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The “Fast track” protocol is an early extubation strategy to reduce ventilator-associated complications and induce early recovery after open-heart surgery. This study compared clinical outcomes between operating room extubation and ICU extubation after open-heart surgery in patients with CHD.
We retrospectively reviewed 215 patients who underwent open-heart surgery for CHDs under the scheduled “Fast track” protocol between September 2016 and April 2022. The clinical endpoints were post-operative complications, including bleeding, respiratory and neurological complications, and hospital/ICU stays.
The patients were divided into operating room extubation (group O, n = 124) and ICU extubation (group I, n=91) groups. The most frequently performed procedures were patch closures of the atrial septal (107/215, 49.8%) and ventricular septal (89/215, 41.4%) defects. There were no significant differences in major post-operative complications or ICU and hospital stay duration between the two groups; however, patients in group I showed longer mechanical ventilatory support (0.0 min vs. 59.0 min (interquartile range: 17.0–169.0), p < 0.001). Patients in Group O showed higher initial lactate levels (3.2 ± 1.7 mg/dL versus 2.5 ± 2.0 mg/dL, p = 0.007) and more frequently used additional sedatives and opioid analgesics (33.1% versus 19.8%, p = 0.031).
Extubation in the operating room was not beneficial for patients during post-operative ICU or hospital stay. Early extubation in the ICU resulted in more stable hemodynamics in the immediate post-operative period and required less use of sedatives and analgesics.
In this observational study conducted in 2022, 12.3% of patients who shared a room with a patient positive for severe acute respiratory coronavirus virus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) also had a positive polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test, either at initial screening or during a 5-day quarantine. Therefore, screening and quarantine are still necessary within hospitals for close-contact inpatients during the SARS-CoV-2 omicron-variant dominant period.
Blood carotenoid concentration measurement is considered the gold standard for fruit and vegetable (F&V) intake estimation; however, this method is invasive and expensive. Recently, skin carotenoid status (SCS) measured by optical sensors has been evaluated as a promising parameter for F&V intake estimation. In this cross-sectional study, we aimed to validate the utility of resonance Raman spectroscopy (RRS)-assessed SCS as a biomarker of F&V intake in Korean adults. We used data from 108 participants aged 20–69 years who completed SCS measurements, blood collection and 3-d dietary recordings. Serum carotenoid concentrations were quantified using HPLC, and dietary carotenoid and F&V intakes were estimated via 3-d dietary records using a carotenoid database for common Korean foods. The correlations of the SCS with serum carotenoid concentrations, dietary carotenoid intake and F&V intake were examined to assess SCS validity. SCS was positively correlated with total serum carotenoid concentration (r = 0·52, 95 % CI = 0·36, 0·64, P < 0·001), serum β-carotene concentration (r = 0·60, 95 % CI = 0·47, 0·71, P < 0·001), total carotenoid intake (r = 0·20, 95 % CI = 0·01, 0·37, P = 0·04), β-carotene intake (r = 0·30, 95 % CI = 0·11, 0·46, P = 0·002) and F&V intake (r = 0·40, 95 % CI = 0·23, 0·55, P < 0·001). These results suggest that SCS can be a valid biomarker of F&V intake in Korean adults.
In this review, we introduce our recent applications of deep learning to solar and space weather data. We have successfully applied novel deep learning methods to the following applications: (1) generation of solar farside/backside magnetograms and global field extrapolation based on them, (2) generation of solar UV/EUV images from other UV/EUV images and magnetograms, (3) denoising solar magnetograms using supervised learning, (4) generation of UV/EUV images and magnetograms from Galileo sunspot drawings, (5) improvement of global IRI TEC maps using IGS TEC ones, (6) one-day forecasting of global TEC maps through image translation, (7) generation of high-resolution magnetograms from Ca II K images, (8) super-resolution of solar magnetograms, (9) flare classification by CNN and visual explanation by attribution methods, and (10) forecasting GOES solar X-ray profiles. We present major results and discuss them. We also present future plans for integrated space weather models based on deep learning.
It has been suggested that psychosocial factors are related to survival time of inpatients with cancer. However, there are not many studies examining the relationship between spiritual well-being (SWB) and survival time among countries. This study investigated the relationship between SWB and survival time among three East Asian countries.
This international multicenter cohort study is a secondary analysis involving newly admitted inpatients with advanced cancer in palliative care units in Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan. SWB was measured using the Integrated Palliative Outcome Scale (IPOS) at admission. We performed multivariate analysis using the Cox proportional hazards model to identify independent prognostic factors.
A total of 2,638 patients treated at 37 palliative care units from January 2017 to September 2018 were analyzed. The median survival time was 18.0 days (95% confidence interval [CI] 16.5–19.5) in Japan, 23.0 days (95% CI 19.9–26.1) in Korea, and 15.0 days (95% CI 13.0–17.0) in Taiwan. SWB was a significant factor correlated with survival in Taiwan (hazard ratio [HR] 1.27; 95% CI 1.01–1.59; p = 0.04), while it was insignificant in Japan (HR 1.10; 95% CI 1.00–1.22; p = 0.06), and Korea (HR 1.02; 95% CI 0.77–1.35; p = 0.89).
Significance of results
SWB on admission was associated with survival in patients with advanced cancer in Taiwan but not Japan or Korea. The findings suggest the possibility of a positive relationship between spiritual care and survival time in patients with far advanced cancer.
Antisocial behavior can be contagious, spreading from individual to individual and rippling through social networks. Moreover, it can spread not only through third-party influence from observation, just like innovations or individual behavior do, but also through direct experience, via “pay-it-forward” retaliation. Here, we distinguish between the effects of observation and victimization for the contagion of antisocial behavior by analyzing large-scale digital trace data. We study the spread of cheating in more than a million matches of an online multiplayer first-person shooter game, in which up to 100 players compete individually or in teams against strangers. We identify event sequences in which a player who observes or is killed by a certain number of cheaters starts cheating and evaluate the extent to which these sequences would appear if we preserve the team and interaction structure but assume alternative gameplay scenarios. The results reveal that social contagion is only likely to exist for those who both observe and experience cheating, suggesting that third-party influence and “pay-it-forward” reciprocity interact positively. In addition, the effect is present only for those who both observe and experience more than once, suggesting that cheating is more likely to spread after repeated or multi-source exposure. Approaching online games as models of social systems, we use the findings to discuss strategies for targeted interventions to stem the spread of cheating and antisocial behavior more generally in online communities, schools, organizations, and sports.
Background: Recently, healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) in long-term care hospitals (LTCHs) have markedly increased, but no infection control policy has been established in South Korea. We investigated the current HAI surveillance system and executed a point-prevalence pilot study in LTCHs. Methods: HAIs were defined by newly established surveillance manual based on McGeer criteria revised in 2012. Three LTCHs in Seoul and Gyeonggi province were voluntarily recruited, and data were collected from up to 50 patients who were hospitalized on August 1. The medical records from September to November 2018 were retrospectively reviewed by a charge nurse for infection control per each hospitals after 1 day of training specific for LTCH surveillance. All data were reviewed by a senior researcher visiting onsite. Results: The participating hospitals had 272.33 ± 111.01 beds. Only 1 hospital had an onsite microbiological laboratory. In total, 156 patients were enrolled and 5 HAIs were detected, for a prevalence rate of 3.2%. The average patient age was 79.04 ± 9.92 years. The HAIs included 2 urinary tract infections, skin and soft-tissue infection, low respiratory infection, and conjunctivitis. Conclusions: This is the first survey of HAI in LTCHs in South Korea. The 3.2% prevalence rate is lower than those from previous reports from the European Union or the United States. This study supports the development of a national HAI surveillance and infection control system in LTCHs, although implementation may be limited due to the lack of laboratory support and infection control infrastructure in Korea.
We report our experience with an emergency room (ER) shutdown related to an accidental exposure to a patient with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) who had not been isolated.
A 635-bed, tertiary-care hospital in Daegu, South Korea.
To prevent nosocomial transmission of the disease, we subsequently isolated patients with suspected symptoms, relevant radiographic findings, or epidemiology. Severe acute respiratory coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction assays (RT-PCR) were performed for most patients requiring hospitalization. A universal mask policy and comprehensive use of personal protective equipment (PPE) were implemented. We analyzed effects of these interventions.
From the pre-shutdown period (February 10–25, 2020) to the post-shutdown period (February 28 to March 16, 2020), the mean hourly turnaround time decreased from 23:31 ±6:43 hours to 9:27 ±3:41 hours (P < .001). As a result, the proportion of the patients tested increased from 5.8% (N=1,037) to 64.6% (N=690) (P < .001) and the average number of tests per day increased from 3.8±4.3 to 24.7±5.0 (P < .001). All 23 patients with COVID-19 in the post-shutdown period were isolated in the ER without any problematic accidental exposure or nosocomial transmission. After the shutdown, several metrics increased. The median duration of stay in the ER among hospitalized patients increased from 4:30 hours (interquartile range [IQR], 2:17–9:48) to 14:33 hours (IQR, 6:55–24:50) (P < .001). Rates of intensive care unit admissions increased from 1.4% to 2.9% (P = .023), and mortality increased from 0.9% to 3.0% (P = .001).
Problematic accidental exposure and nosocomial transmission of COVID-19 can be successfully prevented through active isolation and surveillance policies and comprehensive PPE use despite longer ER stays and the presence of more severely ill patients during a severe COVID-19 outbreak.
In order to improve research planning it is critical to understand how decision makers have used previous health technology assessment (HTA) results, and what expectations policy makers and health professionals have in HTA programs. In this study, we aimed to examine how HTA results have been used by decision makers, and explore complex relationships between the National Evidence-based Healthcare Collaborating Agency (NECA) and various decision-making bodies in Korea.
Three areas of healthcare decision in which NECA has been extensively involved were selected: prevention programs, single technology reimbursement, and clinical guidelines. We conducted in-depth interviews with two or three key informants from decision making bodies in each selected area. The interview participants included clinicians and government officials. We also conducted interviews with the researchers who participated in the related research to better capture the context. The interviews were analyzed using qualitative content analysis.
Eight interviews with decision makers and five interviews with researchers were conducted and analyzed. Three main themes were revealed in the data. Firstly, it was revealed that NECA was primarily expected to be an intermediary between clinicians and government. Both government and clinicians had referred to NECA's HTA results, which are expected to be scientific and impartial, when they need to reach one another on controversial topics. Secondly, there was a high need for deliberative process to resolve the conflicting interests regarding HTA results. Lastly, they wanted the HTA process to be more responsive to fast changing healthcare environments by introducing a form of rapid review.
Lack of effective communication channels between government and healthcare providers in Korea has made a room for HTA to be a common language for both sides. It is time to give up the ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach to conducting HTA research and tailor the research process to various needs of decision makers.
Since established in 2009, the National Evidence-based healthcare Collaborating Agency (NECA) has been the sole government-funded Health Technology Assessment (HTA) institution in Korea, yet little effort has been made to systematically evaluate the influence of its products. In this study, we aimed to measure the impact of the HTA products of NECA on clinical and policy decisions by introducing a systematic framework.
We included HTA reports published from 2009 to 2015. Among the 141 research reports published during this period, there were 67 HTA reports. We gathered data on the influence by literature and news article search, review of administrative documents and directly listening to the decision makers. The influence was categorized into three decision types: changes in clinical guidelines, administrative decision on investment/disinvestment and healthcare policy making. Whether a research report was used directly in decision making, or followed by subsequent researches or round-table conference, was recorded to examine the knowledge transfer process.
In total, 67.2 percent of the included HTA reports were used to support clinical and policy decisions. Twenty-seven reports had influenced administrative decisions on investment/disinvestment. Ten provided evidence for new health policies or legislation. Eight were reflected in clinical guidelines. The impact of HTA reports published by NECA was more evident when the research was directly requested by decision-making bodies such as government institutions. Although most HTA reports were conducted in collaboration with clinicians, the use of results by clinicians was limited. Definitive results were more likely to be used, but reports with competing interests had fewer impacts.
HTA by NECA had impacts on the rational use of healthcare resources in Korea, and NECA has established its role as an intermediary between governmental decision-making bodies and clinicians. However, more continuous approaches rather than one-time HTA research are needed for HTA on controversial topics to have impacts on decision making.
We investigated potential nosocomial aerosol transmission of severe fever with thrombocytopenia syndrome virus (SFTSV) with droplet precautions. During aerosol generating procedures, SFTSV was be transmitted from person to person through aerosols. Thus, airborne precautions should be added to standard precautions to avoid direct contact and droplet transmission.
87Sr/86Sr ratios and εNd values of detrital particles at International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) Site U1456 in the Laxmi Basin of the Arabian Sea were measured to trace changes in sediment provenance over glacial–interglacial cycles. Based on the correlation of planktonic foraminiferal (Globigerinoides ruber) δ18O fluctuations with the LR04 stack of benthic foraminifera δ18O values, combined with shipboard biostratigraphic and palaeomagnetic data, the studied interval spans ∼1.2 Ma. Over the past 800 ka, 87Sr/86Sr values ranged from 0.711 to 0.726 while εNd values ranged between −12.5 and −7.3 in the detrital particles. By comparing 87Sr/86Sr ratios and εNd values of the possible sources of river sediments with our data, we found that sediments in the Laxmi Basin were influenced to various degrees by proportions of at least three sediment sources (i.e. Tapi River, Narmada River and Indus River). The Indus River might be a more important contributor to glacial sediments. Although 87Sr/86Sr ratios and εNd values varied quasi-cyclically, this pattern did not correspond precisely to the glacial–interglacial cycles. In particular, low-magnetic-susceptibility (low-MS) intervals coinciding with pelagic carbonates were characterized by low 87Sr/86Sr ratios and high εNd values, whereas high-MS intervals matching turbidite deposits showed high 87Sr/86Sr ratios and low εNd values. Thus, this study reveals that differences in the depositional processes between glacial and interglacial periods, governed by changes in sea level and monsoon activity, are an important factor in deciding 87Sr/86Sr ratios and εNd values of the detrital fraction in the Indus Fan of the Arabian Sea.
The present study aimed to estimate heritability of Hwabyung (HB) symptoms in adolescent and young adult twins in South Korea. The sample included 1,601 twins consisting of 143 pairs of monozygotic male (MZM), 67 pairs of dizygotic male (DZM), 295 pairs of monozygotic female (MZF), 114 pairs of dizygotic female (DZF), and 117 pairs of opposite-sex dizygotic (OSDZ) twins and 129 twins with non-participating co-twins (mean age = 19.1 ± 3.1 years; range: 12–29 years). An HB symptom questionnaire was given to twins via a telephone interview. Consistent with the literature of HB, the mean level of HB was significantly higher in females than in males. Maximum likelihood twin correlations for HB were 0.31 (95% CI [0.16, 0.45]) for MZM, 0.19 (95% CI [-0.05, 0.41]) for DZM, 0.50 (95% CI [0.41, 0.58]) for MZF, 0.28 (95% CI [0.11, 0.44]) for DZF, and 0.23 (95% CI [0.05, 0.40]) for OSDZ twins. These patterns of twin correlations suggested the presence of additive genetic influences on HB. Model-fitting analysis showed that additive genetic and individual-specific environmental influences on HB were 44% (95% CI [37, 51]) and 56% (95% CI [49, 63]), respectively. Shared environmental influences were not significant. These parameter estimates were not significantly different between two sexes, and did not change significantly with age in the present sample, suggesting that genetic and environmental influences on HB in both sexes are stable across adolescence and young adulthood.
Objectives: Rotator cuff tear is the leading cause of the decline in quality of life for older adults, but comparative evidence on treatment effectiveness is lacking. This study systematically reviewed the effects of various rotator cuff tear treatments through a Bayesian meta-analysis of the related randomized clinical trials (RCTs).
Methods: We searched nine electronic databases for RCTs evaluating rotator cuff tear treatments from their inception through June 2017. A systematic review was performed following the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) and the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence-Decision Support Unit guidelines (Supplementary Table 1). Outcomes included functional improvement, pain one year after surgical treatment, and tendon structural integrity. The Bayesian network meta-analysis was applied for functional improvement and pain, based on an assumption of consistency and similarity. Tendon integrity was reported descriptively.
Results: Fifteen RCTs were selected. Patients undergoing physiotherapy after open surgery showed statistically significant functional improvements compared with those undergoing physiotherapy only (mean differences, 9.1 [credible interval, 0.9–17.4]). Open surgery with physiotherapy was associated with a decrease in pain 1 year after treatment compared with when physiotherapy was combined with arthroscopic rotator cuff surgery, mini open surgery, platelet-rich plasma therapy, or physiotherapy alone (absolute value of mean difference 1.2 to 1.4). The tendon integrity results were inconsistent.
Conclusions: Some surgical treatments were associated with significant improvement in function and pain, but evidence regarding their comparative effectiveness is still lacking. A well-designed RCT discussing functional and structural treatment outcomes is needed in future.
To evaluate the appropriateness of the screening strategy for healthcare personnel (HCP) during a hospital-associated Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) outbreak, we performed a serologic investigation in 189 rRT-PCR–negative HCP exposed and assigned to MERS patients. Although 20%–25% of HCP experienced MERS-like symptoms, none of them showed seroconversion by plaque reduction neutralization test (PRNT).
Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) are common dietary exposures that cross the human placenta and are classified as a probable human carcinogen. The aim of the present study was to investigate the potential impact of exposure to PAH-containing meat consumed during pregnancy on birth outcomes.
Prospective birth cohort study. Only non-smoking women with singleton pregnancies, who were free from chronic disease such as diabetes and hypertension, were included in the study. Maternal consumption of PAH-rich meat was estimated through FFQ. Multiple linear regression was used to assess factors related to higher intake and the association between dietary PAH and birth outcomes.
Republic of Korea, 2006–2011.
Pregnant women (n 778) at 12–28 weeks of gestation enrolled in the Mothers and Children’s Environmental Health (MOCEH) study.
The multivariable regression model showed a significant reduction in birth weight associated with higher consumption level of foods rich in PAH, such as grilled or roasted meat, during pregnancy (β=−17·48 g, P<0·05 for every 1 point higher in meat score). Further adjusting for biomarkers of airborne PAH did not alter this association. There was no evidence that higher consumption level of PAH-rich meat shortens the duration of gestation (P=0·561). Regression models performed for birth length and head circumference produced negative effects that were not statistically significant.
Consumption of higher levels of barbecued, fried, roasted and smoked meats during pregnancy was associated with reduced birth weight. Dietary risk of PAH exposure in Korean women is of concern.
Background: Dysphagia is a common symptom and an important prognostic factor in Parkinson’s disease (PD). Although cognitive and motor dysfunctions may contribute to dysphagia in patients with PD, any specific association between such problems and swallowing functions is unclear. Here, we examined the potential relationship between cognitive/motor components and swallowing functions in PD. We evaluated the contributions of cognition and motor function to the components of swallowing via video fluoroscopic swallowing (VFS) experiments. Methods: We prospectively enrolled 56 patients without dementia having PD. Parkinson’s disease severity was assessed by the Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS). All participants received neuropsychological tests covering general mental status, visuospatial function, attention, language, learning and memory, and frontal executive function. The well-validated “modified barium swallow impairment profile” scoring system was applied during VFS studies to quantify swallowing impairments. Finally, correlations between neuropsychological or motor functions and impairment in swallowing components were calculated. Results: The most significant correlations were found between the frontal/executive or learning/memory domains and the oral phase of swallowing, though a minor component of the pharyngeal phase correlated with frontal function as well. Bradykinesia and the UPDRS total score were associated with both the pharyngeal and oral phases. Conclusions: Our findings suggest that cognitive dysfunctions are associated with the oral phase of swallowing in patients with early stage PD while the severity of motor symptoms may be associated with overall swallowing function.
Many transgenic domestic animals have been developed to produce therapeutic proteins in the mammary gland, and this approach is one of the most important methods for agricultural and biomedical applications. However, expression and secretion of a protein varies because transgenes are integrated at random sites in the genome. In addition, distal enhancers are very important for transcriptional gene regulation and tissue-specific gene expression. Development of a vector system regulated accurately in the genome is needed to improve production of therapeutic proteins. The objective of this study was to develop a knock-in system for expression of human fibroblast growth factor 2 (FGF2) in the bovine β-casein gene locus. The F2A sequence was fused to the human FGF2 gene and inserted into exon 3 of the β-casein gene. We detected expression of human FGF2 mRNA in the HC11 mouse mammary epithelial cells by RT-PCR and human FGF2 protein in the culture media using western blot analysis when the knock-in vector was introduced. We transfected the knock-in vector into bovine ear fibroblasts and produced knock-in fibroblasts using the clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)/Cas9 system. Moreover, the CRISPR/Cas9 system was more efficient than conventional methods. In addition, we produced knock-in blastocysts by somatic cell nuclear transfer using the knock-in fibroblasts. Our knock-in fibroblasts may help to create cloned embryos for development of transgenic dairy cattle expressing human FGF2 protein in the mammary gland via the expression system of the bovine β-casein gene.
A 31-year-old patient previously underwent a Mustard operation presented with palpitations. Atrial tachycardia and paroxysmal atrial fibrillation were documented on the surface electrocardiogram. Under the guidance of a three-dimensional electroanatomic mapping system, ablation of the isolated left-sided pulmonary vein and a cavo-tricuspid isthmus-dependent intra-atrial macro re-entry circuit eliminated atrial tachycardia and paroxysmal atrial fibrillation without the recurrence of atrial tachyarrhythmia.
This study aimed to investigate the influences of age, education, and gender on the two total scores (TS-I and TS-II) of the Consortium to Establish a Registry for Alzheimer's Disease Neuropsychological assessment battery (CERAD-NP) and to provide normative information based on an analysis for a large number of elderly persons with a wide range of educational levels.
In the study, 1,987 community-dwelling healthy volunteers (620 males and 1,367 females; 50–90 years of age; and zero to 25 years of education) were included. People with serious neurological, medical, and psychiatric disorders (including dementia) were excluded. All participants underwent the CERAD-NP assessment. TS-I was generated by summing raw scores from the CERAD-NP subtests, excluding Mini-Mental State Examination and Constructional Praxis (CP) recall subtests. TS-II was calculated by adding CP recall score to TS-I.
Both TS-I and TS-II were significantly influenced by demographic variables. Education accounted for the greatest proportion of score variance. Interaction effect between age and gender was found. Based on the results obtained, normative data of the CERAD-NP total scores were stratified by age (six overlapping tables), education (four strata), and gender.
The normative information will be very useful for better interpretation of the CERAD-NP total scores in various clinical and research settings and for comparing individuals’ performance of the battery across countries.