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The overarching cultural context of the brain injury survivor, particularly that related to minority peoples with a history of colonisation and discrimination, has rarely been referred to in the research literature, despite profoundly influencing a person’s recovery journey in significant ways, including access to services. This study highlights issues faced by Australian Aboriginal traumatic brain injury (TBI) survivors in terms of real-life consequences of the high incidence of TBI in this population, current treatment and long-term challenges.
A case study approach utilised qualitative interview and file review data related to five male Aboriginal TBI survivors diagnosed with acquired communication disorders. The five TBI survivors were from diverse areas of rural and remote Western Australia, aged between 19 and 48 years at the time of injury, with a range of severity.
Common themes included: significant long-term life changes; short-term and long-term dislocation from family and country as medical intervention and rehabilitation were undertaken away from the person’s rural/remote home; family adjustments to the TBI including permanent re-location to a metropolitan area to be with their family member in residential care; challenges related to lack of formal rehabilitation services in rural areas; poor communication channels; poor cultural security of services; and lack of consistent follow-up.
Discussion and Conclusion:
These case reports represent some of the first documented stories of Aboriginal Australian TBI survivors. They supplement available epidemiological data and highlight different contexts for Aboriginal people after TBI, contributing to an overall profile that is relevant for rehabilitation service planning.
The ventricular assist device is being increasingly used as a “bridge-to-transplant” option in children with heart failure who have failed medical management. Care for this medically complex population must be optimised, including through concomitant pharmacotherapy. Pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic alterations affecting pharmacotherapy are increasingly discovered in children supported with extracorporeal membrane oxygenation, another form of mechanical circulatory support. Similarities between extracorporeal membrane oxygenation and ventricular assist devices support the hypothesis that similar alterations may exist in ventricular assist device-supported patients. We conducted a literature review to assess the current data available on pharmacokinetics/pharmacodynamics in children with ventricular assist devices. We found two adult and no paediatric pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic studies in ventricular assist device-supported patients. While mechanisms may be partially extrapolated from children supported with extracorporeal membrane oxygenation, dedicated investigation of the paediatric ventricular assist device population is crucial given the inherent differences between the two forms of mechanical circulatory support, and pathophysiology that is unique to these patients. Commonly used drugs such as anticoagulants and antibiotics have narrow therapeutic windows with devastating consequences if under-dosed or over-dosed. Clinical studies are urgently needed to improve outcomes and maximise the potential of ventricular assist devices in this vulnerable population.
The Permian is regarded as one of the most crucial intervals during echinoid evolution because crown group echinoids are first widely known from the Permian. New faunas provide important information regarding the diversity of echinoids during this significant interval as well as the morphological characterization of the earliest crown group and latest stem group echinoids. A new fauna from the Capitanian Lamar Member of the Bell Canyon Formation in the Guadalupe Mountains of West Texas comprises at least three new taxa, including Eotiaris guadalupensis Thompson n. sp. an indeterminate archaeocidarid, and Pronechinus? sp. All specimens represented are silicified and known from disarticulated or semiarticulated interambulacral and ambulacral plates and spines. This assemblage is one of the most diverse echinoid assemblages known from the Permian and, as such, informs the paleoecological setting in which the earliest crown group echinoids lived. This new fauna indicates that crown group echinoids occupied the same environments as stem group echinoids of the Archaeocidaridae and Proterocidaridae. Furthermore, the echinoids described herein begin to elucidate the order of character transitions that likely took place between stem group and crown group echinoids. At least one of the morphological innovations once thought to be characteristic of early crown group echinoids, crenulate tubercles, was in fact widespread in a number of stem group taxa from the Permian as well. Crenulate tubercles are reported from two taxa, and putative cidaroid style U-shaped teeth are present in the fauna. The presence of crenulate tubercles in the archaeocidarid indicates that crenulate tubercles were present in stem group echinoids, and thus the evolution of this character likely preceded the evolution of many of the synapomorphies that define the echinoid crown group.
Young children are particularly vulnerable to malnutrition as nutrition transition progresses. The present study aimed to document the prevalence, coexistence and correlates of nutritional status (stunting, overweight/obesity and anaemia) in Samoan children aged 24–59 months.
A cross-sectional community-based survey. Height and weight were used to determine prevalence of stunting (height-for-age Z-score <−2) and overweight/obesity (BMI-for-age Z-score >+2) based on WHO growth standards. Anaemia was determined using an AimStrip Hemoglobin test system (Hb <110 g/l).
Ten villages on the Samoan island of Upolu.
Mother–child pairs (n 305) recruited using convenience sampling.
Moderate or severe stunting was apparent in 20·3 % of children, 16·1 % were overweight/obese and 34·1 % were anaemic. Among the overweight/obese children, 28·6 % were also stunted and 42·9 % anaemic, indicating dual burden of malnutrition. Stunting was significantly less likely among girls (OR=0·41; 95 % CI 0·21, 0·79, P<0·01) than boys. Overweight/obesity was associated with higher family socio-economic status and decreased sugar intake (OR per 10 g/d=0·89, 95 % CI 0·80, 0·99, P=0·032). The odds of anaemia decreased with age and anaemia was more likely in children with an anaemic mother (OR=2·20; 95 % CI 1·22, 3·98, P=0·007). No child, maternal or household characteristic was associated with more than one of the nutritional status outcomes, highlighting the need for condition-specific interventions in this age group.
The observed prevalences of stunting, overweight/obesity and anaemia suggest that it is critical to invest in nutrition and develop health programmes targeting early childhood growth and development in Samoa.
Background: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians experience stroke and traumatic brain injury (TBI) with much greater frequency than non-Aboriginal Australians. Acquired communication disorders (ACD) can result from these conditions and can significantly impact everyday life. Yet few Aboriginal people access rehabilitation services and little is known about Aboriginal peoples’ experiences of ACD. This paper describes the protocol surrounding a study that aims to explore the extent and impact of ACD in Western Australian Aboriginal populations following stroke or TBI and develop a culturally appropriate screening tool for ACD and accessible and culturally appropriate service delivery models.
Method/Design: The 3-year, mixed methods study is being conducted in metropolitan Perth and five regional centres in Western Australia. Situated within an Aboriginal research framework, methods include an analysis of linked routine hospital admission data and retrospective file audits, development of a screening tool for ACD, interviews with people with ACD, their families, and health professionals, and drafting of alternative service delivery models.
Discussion: This study will address the extent of ACD in Aboriginal populations and document challenges for Aboriginal people in accessing speech pathology services. Documenting the burden and impact of ACD within a culturally secure framework is a forerunner to developing better ways to address the problems faced by Aboriginal people with ACD and their families. This will in turn increase the likelihood that Aboriginal people with ACD will be diagnosed and referred to professional support to improve their communication, quality of life and functioning within the family and community context.
Drawing on everyday telephone and video interactions, this book surveys how English speakers use grammar to formulate responses in ordinary conversation. The authors show that speakers build their responses in a variety of ways: the responses can be longer or shorter, repetitive or not, and can be uttered with different intonational 'melodies'. Focusing on four sequence types: responses to questions ('What time are we leaving?' - 'Seven'), responses to informings ('The May Company are sure having a big sale' - 'Are they?'), responses to assessments ('Track walking is so boring. Even with headphones' - 'It is'), and responses to requests ('Please don't tell Adeline' - 'Oh no I won't say anything'), they argue that an interactional approach holds the key to explaining why some types of utterances in English conversation seem to have something 'missing' and others seem overly wordy.