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There are no definite guidelines regarding the most adequate steroid regimens for acute acoustic trauma.
To elucidate the dose-dependent differing benefits of oral steroids on hearing improvement following acute acoustic trauma.
Twenty-nine patients treated with oral steroids following a diagnosis of unilateral acute acoustic trauma were retrospectively reviewed. Patients were sorted into two groups with an oral steroid regimen. Group 1 received a 14-day course of treatment: 60 mg prednisolone daily for 10 days, tapering off over days 11–14. Group 2 received prednisolone for a total of 10 days: 60 mg for 5 days, tapering down each day for the remainder. Multivariable linear regression analysis was performed to evaluate the factors associated with the hearing gain.
In the multivariable regression (R2 = 0.51, p < 0.001), patients in group 1 showed more significant improvement in the degree of hearing gain compared to group 2 (p = 0.03).
After comparing the differing benefits of oral steroids on hearing improvement by dosage, we recommend a high dose of prednisolone (60 mg per day) for 10 days, tapering over the remaining 4 days, for better hearing recovery following acute acoustic trauma.
The Rietveld profile refinement method is probably the most popular technique used for the crystallographic characterization of materials including crystal structures and phase analysis, but it has been used mostly with ideal powder sample, not with textured polycrystals, because effects of strong and complex textures. Most technological materials are fabricated by using thermo-mechanical forming processes, which inevitably produce strong and complex preferential orientations of the crystallites. Consequently, the diffraction patterns of a given technological material are not unique but vary considerably with the measuring direction, with intensity variations as large as factors of hundreds, depending on the degree of texture. The texture effect on the diffraction pattern of a certain sample direction is directly proportional to the pole density of the corresponding inverse pole figure, which can be obtained from the three-dimensional orientation distribution function (ODF) of the material. The ODFs of materials with high crystal symmetry, such as cubic, hexagonal, tetragonal, and orthorhombic, can be determined quite precisely, using modern texture analysis techniques (for example, Bungel, Wenk, and Kallend et al.). The pole density distributions of the inverse pole figures can be used in the diffraction profile calculation of a highly textured sample.
While studies suggest that nutritional supplementation may reduce aggressive behavior in children, few have examined their effects on specific forms of aggression. This study tests the primary hypothesis that omega-3 (ω-3), both alone and in conjunction with social skills training, will have particular post-treatment efficacy for reducing childhood reactive aggression relative to baseline.
In this randomized, double-blind, stratified, placebo-controlled, factorial trial, a clinical sample of 282 children with externalizing behavior aged 7–16 years was randomized into ω-3 only, social skills only, ω-3 + social skills, and placebo control groups. Treatment duration was 6 months. The primary outcome measure was reactive aggression collected at 0, 3, 6, 9, and 12 months, with antisocial behavior as a secondary outcome.
Children in the ω-3-only group showed a short-term reduction (at 3 and 6 months) in self-report reactive aggression, and also a short-term reduction in overall antisocial behavior. Sensitivity analyses and a robustness check replicated significant interaction effects. Effect sizes (d) were small, ranging from 0.17 to 0.31.
Findings provide some initial support for the efficacy of ω-3 in reducing reactive aggression over and above standard care (medication and parent training), but yield only preliminary and limited support for the efficacy of ω-3 in reducing overall externalizing behavior in children. Future studies could test further whether ω-3 shows promise in reducing more reactive, impulsive forms of aggression.
We report on the astrometric registration of VLBI images of the SiO and H2O masers in OH 231.8+4.2, the iconic Proto-Planetary Nebula also known as the Calabash nebula, using the KVN and Source/Frequency Phase Referencing. This, for the first time, robustly confirms the alignment of the SiO masers, close to the AGB star, which drives the bi-lobe structure with the water masers in the out-flow.
Introduction: Sepsis protocols call for the acquisition of blood cultures in septic emergency department (ED) patients.However, the criteria for blood cultures are vague, they are costly, only positive 8-12% of the time, with up to half of these being false positives. The objective of this study was to establish if positive blood cultures could be excluded in low-risk sepsis patients with levels of CRP below 20 ml/L. Methods: This was a multicenter prospective cohort study of 765 ED patients at St Paul’s and Mount St Joseph’s hospitals in Vancouver with sepsis (2 or more SIRS criteria and infection) and none of: immuncompromised, injection drug use, indwelling vascular device or septic shock (SBP<90 mmhg). Consecutive patients with sepsis had CRP and blood cultures obtained at the same time.OUTCOMES. True positive blood cultures, false positive blood cultures, positive blood cultures that changed patient management. True and false positive blood cultures were based on Infectious Disease Society of America Guidelines, and change in management was defined as change in type or length of antibiotic therapy and was blindly adjudicated by a medical microbiologist. Results: 765 ED patients with sepsis met inclusion criteria. Mean age was 48.3 years and 57% were male. Blood cultures were positive in 99/765 (12.9%) subjects, of which 19 were false positive (19.2%). CRP was >20 mg/L in 595/765 (77.8%) of patients. Of 170 subjects with a CRP<20 mg/L, 3 had a positive blood culture (1.8%; 95% CI 0.1%- 5%). Management was not changed in any patient with a positive blood culture and CRP level<20 mg/L. Of 19 subjects with a false positive blood culture, CRP was <20 mg/L for 6 (31.6%). Conclusion: In this cohort of low-risk sepsis patients, based on a CRP of <20 mg/L, acquisition of blood cultures could be safely avoided in 22.2% of patients, at significant savings to the health care system.
Introduction: Best practice guidelines recommend that at least two sets of blood cultures be sent when blood cultures are required. However, high rates of solitary blood cultures are still common in the emergency department. The aim of this study was to evaluate the efficacy of different quality improvement initiatives aimed at reducing the rate of solitary blood cultures being sent to the lab on patients ultimately discharged from our emergency department. Methods: This was a multi-centre, multi-phase, prospective study evaluating a comprehensive education-based intervention and a second intervention that combined a computerized forcing function along with a brief education-based intervention. The results were analyzed using segmented regression analysis, as well as statistical process control charts. Results: The baseline rate of solitary sets of blood cultures was 41.1%. The education intervention reduced this rate to 30.3%. The introduction of a forcing function with a brief educational intervention further reduced the rate to 11.6%. This represents an absolute reduction of 29.5% from baseline (relative reduction of 71.8%). According to segmental regression analyses, the education intervention alone did not produce a statistically significant change when factoring possible background time-related trends (P=0.071). However, the forcing function produced a statistically significant improvement (P < 0.0005), which was maintained for 6 months. Conclusion: The combination of a brief education-based intervention and a computerized forcing function was more effective than education alone in reducing solitary blood culture collection in our emergency department in this time series study. Forcing functions can be a powerful tool in modifying behaviours and processes in the clinical setting.
A two-phase flow parametric study on an air induction nozzle with water and air as the working fluids is presented. Liquid was supplied at the pre-orifice with various inlet pressures ranging from 3 to 6 bar. The interaction between air and water at the molecular level at the orifice exit leads to formation of a strong shear layer that is intensified with the increase in inlet pressure. Thus, it is vital to regulate the ratio of the intake air to the supplied liquid so that the generated micro bubbles fit the design criteria. CFD analysis was conducted using the commercial software STAR CCM+ from Siemens and validated against experimental data to investigate the design parameters and their effect on the ALR. A volume of fluid (VOF) method of the RANS models was used to undertake the air-water interaction. Parameters such as the throat, air orifice, and air inlet diameter, along with the diffuser angle, were investigated. It was found that certain parameters such as the throat diameter have a more significant effect on the air/liquid entrainment ratio than other parameters.
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.
A new approach is proposed to analyze Bremsstrahlung X-rays that are emitted from laser-produced plasmas (LPP) and are measured by a stack type spectrometer. This new method is based on a spectral tomographic reconstruction concept with the variational principle for optimization, without referring to the electron energy distribution of a plasma. This approach is applied to the analysis of some experimental data obtained at a few major laser facilities to demonstrate the applicability of the method. Slope temperatures of X-rays from LPP are determined with a two-temperature model, showing different spectral characteristics of X-rays depending on laser properties used in the experiments.
Almost nothing is known about the potential negative effects of Internet-based psychological treatments for depression. This study aims at investigating deterioration and its moderators within randomized trials on Internet-based guided self-help for adult depression, using an individual patient data meta-analyses (IPDMA) approach.
Studies were identified through systematic searches (PubMed, PsycINFO, EMBASE, Cochrane Library). Deterioration in participants was defined as a significant symptom increase according to the reliable change index (i.e. 7.68 points in the CES-D; 7.63 points in the BDI). Two-step IPDMA procedures, with a random-effects model were used to pool data.
A total of 18 studies (21 comparisons, 2079 participants) contributed data to the analysis. The risk for a reliable deterioration from baseline to post-treatment was significantly lower in the intervention v. control conditions (3.36 v. 7.60; relative risk 0.47, 95% confidence interval 0.29–0.75). Education moderated effects on deterioration, with patients with low education displaying a higher risk for deterioration than patients with higher education. Deterioration rates for patients with low education did not differ statistically significantly between intervention and control groups. The benefit–risk ratio for patients with low education indicated that 9.38 patients achieve a treatment response for each patient experiencing a symptom deterioration.
Internet-based guided self-help is associated with a mean reduced risk for a symptom deterioration compared to controls. Treatment and symptom progress of patients with low education should be closely monitored, as some patients might face an increased risk for symptom deterioration. Future studies should examine predictors of deterioration in patients with low education.
The popularity of cognitive remediation (CR) interventions for individuals with psychosis is in part based on the well-established link between cognition and functioning and the assumption that by targeting cognition, function can improve. While numerous trials have reported CR's efficacy, it is still not considered an evidence-based treatment. Importantly, little is known about the mechanisms through which it may affect functioning.
In this study, we evaluated CR's proximal and distal effects, and examined potential mechanisms. A total of 75 individuals with psychotic disorders were randomized to a combination of strategy-based and drill-and-practice CR or wait-list control, with assessments of training task performance, neurocognition, functional capacity, symptoms and functioning conducted at baseline, end of the 2-month intervention, and 2-month follow-up.
Compared with treatment as usual, CR was associated with large post-training improvements on training tasks targeting attention, visuospatial memory, and verbal learning and memory, with persisting group differences at the 2-month follow-up. These generalized to mostly large improvements on neuropsychological measures targeting visuospatial memory, verbal learning and memory, delayed verbal memory and verbal working memory. While there were no CR-associated improvements on measures of functional capacity, symptoms, or a self-report measure of independent living skills, there was an effect on an interviewer-rated measure of functioning (Quality of Life Scale), which appeared primarily driven by the Intrapsychic Foundations subscale. Finally, for those randomized to CR, there were significant, medium-sized correlations between training task improvement, neuropsychological improvement and functioning measures.
This suggests a complex, multifactorial relationship between CR, and cognitive and functional change.
Two experiments were conducted to investigate the effects of dietary supplementation of bacteriophage cocktail, probiotics and a combination of these two supplements on performance and gut health of weanling pigs. In Experiment 1, 150 weaned piglets were randomly allotted to three treatments on the basis of BW. The dietary treatments included a basal diet supplemented with 0 (control), 1.0 and 1.5 g/kg bacteriophage cocktail. Pigs fed 1.0 and 1.5 g/kg bacteriophage product had greater (P<0.05) average daily gain (ADG), apparent total tract digestibility of dry matter from day 22 to 35, ileal Lactobacillus spp., villus height (duodenum and jejunum), and fewer coliforms (ileum) and Clostridium spp. (ileum). In Experiment 2, 200 weaned piglets were randomly allotted to four treatments. Dietary treatments included basal diet, basal diet supplemented with 3.0 g/kg fermented probiotic product (P), 1.0 g/kg bacteriophage cocktail (B) and combination of 1.0 g/kg bacteriophage cocktail and 3.0 g/kg fermented probiotic product. Pigs fed bacteriophage cocktail diets had greater (P<0.05) overall ADG, gain to feed ratio (G : F), fecal score from day 8 to day 21, and pigs fed bacteriophage cocktail diets had fewer coliforms (ileum) Clostridium spp. (ileum and cecum). Probiotics significantly increased G : F, colonization of Lactobacillus spp. in ileum. At day 35, bacteriophage treatment group showed greater (P<0.05) villus height of the duodenum, but a deeper crypt in duodenum. The present results indicate that the bacteriophage cocktail had a potential to enhance the performance and gut health of weanling pigs, however their combination with probiotics did not show an interaction.
Δ14C values of leaves of deciduous trees provide a means to map the regional-scale fossil fuel ratio in the atmosphere. We collected a batch of ginkgo (Ginkgo biloba Linnaeus, a deciduous tree) leaf samples from across Korea in the month of July in both 2010 and 2011 to obtain the regional distribution of Δ14C. The Δ14C values of the samples were measured using accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) at the Korea Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources (KIGAM). The average of the Δ14C values from clean air sites in Korea in 2011 measured slightly lower than the average of Δ14C values in 2010. Distribution maps of Δ14C of 2011 and 2010 in Korea were made based on a series of Δ14C values of ginkgo leaf samples from Korea using the Geostatistical and Spatial analyst tools in ESRI's ArcMap software. The distribution maps of Δ14C showed that Δ14C values in the western part of Korea are lower than those in the eastern part of Korea. This is because the western part of Korea is densely populated and contains many industrial complexes, and also because westerly winds from China, containing CO2 from fossil fuel use, blow into Korea. We compared the distribution maps of 2010 and 2011 and tried to find traces of the Fukushima power plant accident in Japan.
In February 2012, an outbreak of gastroenteritis was reported in school A; a successive outbreak was reported at school B. A retrospective cohort study conducted in school A showed that seasoned green seaweed with radishes (relative risk 7·9, 95% confidence interval 1·1–56·2) was significantly associated with illness. Similarly, a case-control study of students at school B showed that cases were 5·1 (95% confidence interval 1·1–24·8) times more likely to have eaten seasoned green seaweed with pears. Multiple norovirus genotypes were detected in samples from students in schools A and B. Norovirus GII.6 isolated from schools A and B were phylogenetically indistinguishable. Green seaweed was supplied by company X, and norovirus GII.4 was isolated from samples of green seaweed. Green seaweed was assumed to be linked to these outbreaks. To our knowledge, this is the first reported norovirus outbreak associated with green seaweed.
Individuals with borderline personality disorder (BPD) frequently display co-morbid mental disorders. These disorders include ‘internalizing’ disorders (such as major depressive disorder and anxiety disorders) and ‘externalizing’ disorders (such as substance use disorders and antisocial personality disorder). It is hypothesized that these disorders may arise from latent ‘internalizing’ and ‘externalizing’ liability factors. Factor analytic studies suggest that internalizing and externalizing factors both contribute to BPD, but the extent to which such contributions are familial is unknown.
Participants were 368 probands (132 with BPD; 134 without BPD; and 102 with major depressive disorder) and 885 siblings and parents of probands. Participants were administered the Diagnostic Interview for DSM-IV Personality Disorders, the Revised Diagnostic Interview for Borderlines, and the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV.
On confirmatory factor analysis of within-person associations of disorders, BPD loaded moderately on internalizing (factor loading 0.53, s.e. = 0.10, p < 0.001) and externalizing latent variables (0.48, s.e. = 0.10, p < 0.001). Within-family associations were assessed using structural equation models of familial and non-familial factors for BPD, internalizing disorders, and externalizing disorders. In a Cholesky decomposition model, 84% (s.e. = 17%, p < 0.001) of the association of BPD with internalizing and externalizing factors was accounted for by familial contributions.
Familial internalizing and externalizing liability factors are both associated with, and therefore may mutually contribute to, BPD. These familial contributions account largely for the pattern of co-morbidity between BPD and internalizing and externalizing disorders.
Liposomal drug delivery products have been already commercialized in tumor therapeutics, which can realize passive tumor targeting via enhanced permeability and retention (EPR) effect resulting from the leaky tumor vasculature. To control drug release out of the liposomes, thermo-sensitive liposomes (TSLs) have been developed so that an abrupt exposure of highly concentrated drugs to tumor tissues was enabled by locally treated thermal stimuli. As interests upon TSL have increased along with ongoing clinical trials, some types of TSLs with different physical properties in pharmacokinetics and the mechanism of drug release have been formulated. However, there are few protocols established with a desirable heat source to maximize the efficacy of different TSLs as treating tumors. In this study, we examined different protocols for the most effective application of different TSLs to tumor therapy. First, we examined if enhancing the accumulation of TSLs within tumor tissues prior to bursting drugs out of TSLs could lead to increasing anti-tumor efficacy. Second, we compared the efficiency of two different heat sources on the use of TSL, a warm water bath (42°C) and high intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU). Our study suggests that the specified protocol be setup for TSLs with different physical properties to optimally function in tumor therapies.