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Overweight and obesity may increase risk of disease progression in men with prostate cancer, but there have been few studies of weight loss interventions in this patient group. Based on existing literature and patient preferences we designed a self-help diet and physical activity intervention with telephone-based dietitian support. Men treated for prostate cancer who were overweight or obese were randomised to intervention or wait-list mini-intervention groups. The intervention group had an initial group meeting, a supporting letter from their urological consultant, three telephone dietitian consultations at 4-week intervals, a pedometer and access to web-based diet and physical activity resources. At 12 weeks, men in both groups were given digital scales for providing follow-up weight measurements, and the wait-list group received a mini-intervention of the supporting letter, a pedometer and access to the web-based resources. Sixty-two men were randomised; fifty-four completed baseline and 12-week measurements, and fifty-one and twenty-seven provided measurements at 6 and 12 months, respectively. In a repeated measures model, mean (95 % CI) difference in weight change between groups (wait-list mini-intervention minus intervention) at 12 weeks was −2·13 (−3·44, −0·82) kg (P = 0·002). At 12 months the corresponding value was −2·43 (−4·50, −0·37) kg (P = 0·022). Mean (95 % CI) difference in global QoL score change between groups at 12 weeks was 12·3 (4·93, 19·7) (P = 0·002); at 12 months there were no significant differences between groups. Results suggest the potential of self-help diet and physical activity intervention with trained support for modest but sustained weight loss in this patient group.
Glycaemic index (GI) and glycaemic load (GL) values of some commonly consumed foods in the United Arab Emirates were determined with an aim of adding these values to the existing international table of GI and GL values. In all, eighteen test foods categorised into breads (n 5), entrée dishes (n 3), main dishes (n 5) and sweet dishes (n 5) were tested. For each test food, at least fifteen healthy participants consumed 25 or 50 g available carbohydrate portions of a reference food (glucose), which was tested three times, and a test food after an overnight fast, was tested once, on separate occasions. Capillary blood samples were obtained by finger-prick and blood glucose was measured using clinical chemistry analyser. A fasting blood sample was obtained at baseline and before consumption of test foods. Additional blood samples were obtained at 15, 30, 45, 60, 90 and 120 min after the consumption of each test food. The GI value of each test food was calculated as the percentage of the incremental area under the blood glucose curve (IAUC) for the test food of each participant divided by the average IAUC for the reference food of the same participant. The GI values of tested foods ranged from low (55 or less) to high (70 or more). The GI values of various breads and rice-containing dishes were comparable with previously published values. This study provides GI and GL values of previously untested traditional Emirati foods which could provide a useful guide on dietary recommendations for the Emirati population.
Claims represent the biggest cost within a property and casualty insurance company. Managing the claims process is fundamental to the company's profitability; moreover, an effective claims operation drives customer satisfaction and policyholder retention. Given the importance of the claims management function and the vast amount of information collected on each claim, it is no surprise that analytics have provided substantial return on investment for insurers. Of course, the analytics have to be coupled with a technology platform that can provide seamless delivery to the claims function personnel.
Claims analytics often take two general forms: descriptive and predictive. Descriptive analytics involve robust reporting of trends in key performance indicators. This includes lagging indicators (e.g., payments closure patterns) and leading indicators (e.g., return to work, network penetration). Predictive analytics involve analyzing historical data at each stage in the claims cycle to influence decisions on future claims. Applications of predictive analytics in claims can address any stage of the claims life cycle – from first notice of loss through settlement and recovery.
This chapter discusses a type of predictive modeling application commonly referred to as claims triage. The broad objective of claims triage is to use the characteristics of each individual claim at a specific point in time to predict some future outcome, which then dictates how the claim will be handled. In practice, claims triage might identify simpler claims for fast-track processing or alternatively identify complex claims that require expert handling or intervention. Claims triage models can help assign claims to the right adjuster or inform the adjuster of what actions to take (e.g., when to dispatch an engineer to a claim site or when to assign a nurse case manager to a workers’ compensation claim).
In this chapter, we discuss a specific application that seeks to identify those claims that have a higher likelihood to settle far in excess of early reported loss estimates. This early identification of likely claim escalation should enable the claims department to better manage and potentially mitigate the escalation. Much of our discussion is based on application to workers’ compensation claims, but the methods and issues discussed can be relevant to other long-tailed lines with sufficient claims volume such as general liability.
It is common practice to use head bandages for 7–10 days following pinnaplasty. However, head bandages are often troublesome for patients and can lead to serious complications.
A systematic review was performed to evaluate the use of head bandages after pinnaplasty. A search of Medline, Embase (Ovid) and CINAHL (EBSCO collections), the Cochrane Library, Pubmed (US National Library of Medicine) and Google Scholar identified 34 related articles. Of these, 14 were deemed relevant and 2 randomised controlled trials, 1 cohort study, 3 case series and 1 literature review met the inclusion criteria.
The two randomised controlled trials show no statistically significant difference in complications when a head bandage was used for the standard 7–10 days, for 24 hours or not at all. The three case series show that using a head bandage for 24 hours or not at all are safe alternatives. The review article recommended that when head bandages are applied after pinnaplasty it should be for the shortest duration possible.
Based on the available evidence, not using a head bandage at all or using one for a maximum of 24 hours following pinnaplasty is recommended.
The biomechanical response of tissues serves as a valuable marker in the prediction of disease and in understanding the related behavior of the body under various disease and age states. Alterations in the macroscopic biomechanical response of diseased tissues are well documented; however, a thorough understanding of the microstructural events that lead to these changes is poorly understood. In this article we introduce a novel microbiaxial optomechanical device that allows two-photon imaging techniques to be coupled with macromechanical stimulation in hydrated planar tissue specimens. This allows that the mechanical response of the microstructure can be quantified and related to the macroscopic response of the same tissue sample. This occurs without the need to fix tissue in strain states that could introduce a change in the microstructural configuration. We demonstrate the passive realignment of fibrous proteins under various types of loading, which demonstrates the ability of tissue microstructure to reinforce itself in periods of high stress. In addition, the collagen and elastin response of tissue during viscoelastic behavior is reported showing interstitial fluid movement and fiber realignment potentially responsible for the temporal behavior. We also demonstrate that nonhomogeneities in fiber strain exist over biaxial regions of assumed homogeneity.
This article examines the impacts of monetary policy on agricultural prices in four Asian economies using time series analysis and graph theory. The estimations clearly show that agricultural prices overshoot their long-run equilibrium values for Korea, Philippines, and Thailand, and the overshooting for agricultural prices is larger than for manufactured prices. Impulse-response functions and variance-decomposition analysis based on directed graphs and causal structures highlight the complex interplay among the variables in the model and how those relationships differ by country. Money supply changes clearly affect real variables and relative prices for all countries either through overshooting or non-neutrality of money.
An experiment was carried out to determine the partitioning and accumulation of nitrogen in plant components, nitrogenase activity and their relationships with seed yield of a local cultivar of winged bean (Psophocarpus tetragonolobus (L.) DC.) grown on three support systems of 0, 1, and 2 m height under field conditions. Total nitrogen accumulation and nitrogen partitioning were determined throughout the growing season by measuring nitrogen content and concentration in above-ground plant tissues (leaves, stems, petioles and pods). Support heights of 1 and 2 m significantly increased total nitrogen accumulation in component parts of the plant, nitrogenase activity, nodulation, total dry matter accumulation and seed yield compared with the control. Plants grown on supports accumulated significantly higher leaf nitrogen at the vegetative stages and the contribution of seed nitrogen was also significantly higher compared with unsupported plants. Nitrogenase activity increased with onset of flowering but declined during the pod formation stage in plants grown on a support system. Unsupported plants showed higher nitrogenase activity prior to flowering possibly due to lack of photosynthate and, consequently, early senescence of leaves.
Osteosarcoma is the most common primary malignant tumour of bone and it usually metastasises to the lung. In the nasal cavity metastatic disease is extremely rare. We describe a case of osteosarcoma presenting with recurrent epistaxis, and proptosis due to secondaries in the nasal cavity. To our knowledge such a case has not been reported previously in the available English literature.
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