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Post-tonsillectomy bleeding is the most frequent complication of tonsillectomy. Inherited platelet function disorders have an estimated prevalence of 1 per cent. Any association between post-tonsillectomy bleeds and undiagnosed inherited platelet function disorders has not been investigated before.
To assess the prevalence of inherited platelet function disorders in a cohort of post-tonsillectomy bleed patients.
An observational cohort study was conducted using hospital digital records. Platelet function analyser 100 (‘PFA-100’) closure time was tested on post-tonsillectomy bleed patients who presented to hospital.
Between 2013 and 2017, 9 of 91 post-tonsillectomy bleed patients who underwent platelet function analyser 100 testing (9.89 per cent) had positive results. Five patients (5.49 per cent) had undiagnosed inherited platelet function disorders. Four patients had false positive results secondary to a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug effect (specificity of 95.3 per cent) proven by repeat testing six weeks later, off medication. The false negative rate was 0 per cent.
The prevalence of inherited platelet function disorders in our post-tonsillectomy bleed cohort is five-fold higher than in the general population. Platelet function analyser 100 testing when patients present with a post-tonsillectomy bleed allows management of their inherited platelet function disorder.
We review our current understanding of the interior structure and thermal evolution of Saturn, with a focus on recent results in the Cassini era. There has been important progress in understanding physical inputs, including equations of state of planetary materials and their mixtures, physical parameters like the gravity field and rotation rate, and constraints on Saturnian free oscillations. At the same time, new methods of calculation, including work on the gravity field of rotating fluid bodies, and the role of interior composition gradients, should help to better constrain the state of Saturn’s interior, now and earlier in its history. However, a better appreciation of modeling uncertainties and degeneracies, along with a greater exploration of modeling phase space, still leave great uncertainties in our understanding of Saturn’s interior. Further analysis of Cassini data sets, as well as precise gravity field measurements from the Cassini Grand Finale orbits, will further revolutionize our understanding of Saturn’s interior over the next few years.
On 27 April 2015, Washington health authorities identified Escherichia coli O157:H7 infections associated with dairy education school field trips held in a barn 20–24 April. Investigation objectives were to determine the magnitude of the outbreak, identify the source of infection, prevent secondary illness transmission and develop recommendations to prevent future outbreaks. Case-finding, hypothesis generating interviews, environmental site visits and a case–control study were conducted. Parents and children were interviewed regarding event activities. Odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) were computed. Environmental testing was conducted in the barn; isolates were compared to patient isolates using pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE). Sixty people were ill, 11 (18%) were hospitalised and six (10%) developed haemolytic uremic syndrome. Ill people ranged in age from <1 year to 47 years (median: 7), and 20 (33%) were female. Twenty-seven case-patients and 88 controls were enrolled in the case–control study. Among first-grade students, handwashing (i.e. soap and water, or hand sanitiser) before lunch was protective (adjusted OR 0.13; 95% CI 0.02–0.88, P = 0.04). Barn samples yielded E. coli O157:H7 with PFGE patterns indistinguishable from patient isolates. This investigation provided epidemiological, laboratory and environmental evidence for a large outbreak of E. coli O157:H7 infections from exposure to a contaminated barn. The investigation highlights the often overlooked risk of infection through exposure to animal environments as well as the importance of handwashing for disease prevention. Increased education and encouragement of infection prevention measures, such as handwashing, can prevent illness.
Accurate and reproducible patient positioning is a critical step in radiotherapy for breast cancer. This has seen the use of permanent skin markings becoming standard practice in many centres. Permanent skin markings may have a negative impact on long-term cosmetic outcome, which may in turn, have psychological implications in terms of body image. The aim of this study was to investigate the feasibility of using a semi-permanent tattooing device for the administration of skin marks for breast radiotherapy set-up.
Materials and methods
This was designed as a phase II double-blinded randomised-controlled study comparing our standard permanent tattoos with the Precision Plus Micropigmentation (PPMS) device method. Patients referred for radical breast radiotherapy were eligible for the study. Each study participant had three marks applied using a randomised combination of the standard permanent and PPMS methods and was blinded to the type of each mark. Follow up was at routine appointments until 24 months post radiotherapy. Participants and a blind assessor were invited to score the visibility of each tattoo at each follow-up using a Visual Analogue Scale. Tattoo scores at each time point and change in tattoo scores at 24 months were analysed by a general linear model using the patient as a fixed effect and the type of tattoo (standard or research) as covariate. A simple questionnaire was used to assess radiographer feedback on using the PPMS.
In total, 60 patients were recruited to the study, of which 55 were available for follow-up at 24 months. Semi-permanent tattoos were more visible at 24 months than the permanent tattoos. Semi-permanent tattoos demonstrated a greater degree of fade than the permanent tattoos at 24 months (final time point) post completion of radiotherapy. This was not statistically significant, although it was more apparent for the patient scores (p=0·071) than the blind assessor scores (p=0·27). No semi-permanent tattoos required re-marking before the end of radiotherapy and no adverse skin reactions were observed.
The PPMS presents a safe and feasible alternative to our permanent tattooing method. An extended period of follow-up is required to fully assess the extent of semi-permanent tattoo fade.
Infection surveillance definitions for long-term care facilities (ie, the McGeer Criteria) have not been updated since 1991. An expert consensus panel modified these definitions on the basis of a structured review of the literature. Significant changes were made to the criteria defining urinary tract and respiratory tract infections. New definitions were added for norovirus gastroenteritis and Clostridum difficile infections.
To evaluate the use of inpatient pharmacy and administrative data to detect surgical site infections (SSIs) following hysterectomy and colorectal and vascular surgery.
Retrospective cohort study.
Five hospitals affiliated with academic medical centers.
Adults who underwent abdominal or vaginal hysterectomy, colorectal surgery, or vascular surgery procedures between July 1, 2003, and June 30, 2005.
We reviewed the medical records of weighted, random samples drawn from 3,079 abdominal and vaginal hysterectomy, 4,748 colorectal surgery, and 3,332 vascular surgery procedures. We compared routine surveillance with screening of inpatient pharmacy data and diagnosis codes and then performed medical record review to confirm SSI status.
Medical records from 823 hysterectomy, 736 colorectal surgery, and 680 vascular surgery procedures were reviewed. SSI rates determined by antimicrobial- and/or diagnosis code-based screening followed by medical record review (enhanced surveillance) were substantially higher than rates determined by routine surveillance (4.3% [95% confidence interval, 3.6%—5.1%] vs 2.7% for hysterectomies, 7.1% [95% confidence interval, 6.7%–8.2%] vs 2.0% for colorectal procedures, and 2.3% [95% confidence interval, 1.9%–2.9%] vs 1.4% for vascular procedures). Enhanced surveillance had substantially higher sensitivity than did routine surveillance to detect SSI (92% vs 59% for hysterectomies, 88% vs 22% for colorectal procedures, and 72% vs 43% for vascular procedures). A review of medical records confirmed SSI for 31% of hysterectomies, 20% of colorectal procedures, and 31% of vascular procedures that met the enhanced screening criteria.
Antimicrobial- and diagnosis code-based screening may be a useful method for enhancing and streamlining SSI surveillance for a variety of surgical procedures, including those procedures targeted by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
Automated surveillance using electronically available data has been found to be accurate and save time. An automated Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) surveillance algorithm was validated at 4 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Epicenter hospitals. Electronic surveillance was highly sensitive, specific, and showed good to excellent agreement for hospital-onset; community-onset, study facility-associated; indeterminate; and recurrent CDI.
To compare incidence of hospital-onset Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) measured by the use of International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, Clinical Modification (ICD-9-CM) discharge diagnosis codes with rates measured by the use of electronically available C. difficile toxin assay results.
Cases of hospital-onset CDI were identified at 5 US hospitals during the period from July 2000 through June 2006 with the use of 2 surveillance definitions: positive toxin assay results (gold standard) and secondary ICD-9-CM discharge diagnosis codes for CDI. The x2 test was used to compare incidence, linear regression models were used to analyze trends, and the test of equality was used to compare slopes.
Of 8,670 cases of hospital-onset CDI, 38% were identified by the use of both toxin assay results and the ICD-9-CM code, 16% by the use of toxin assay results alone, and 45% by the use of the ICD-9-CM code alone. Nearly half (47%) of cases of CDI identified by the use of a secondary diagnosis code alone were community-onset CDI according to the results of the toxin assay. The rate of hospital-onset CDI found by use of ICD-9-CM codes was significantly higher than the rate found by use of toxin assay results overall (P<.001), as well as individually at 3 of the 5 hospitals (P<.001 for all). The agreement between toxin assay results and the presence of a secondary ICD-9-CM diagnosis code for CDI was moderate, with an overall k value of 0.509 and hospital-specific k values of 0.489–0.570. Overall, the annual increase in CDI incidence was significantly greater for rates determined by the use of ICD-9-CM codes than for rates determined by the use of toxin assay results (P = .006).
Although the ICD-9-CM code for CDI seems to be adequate for measuring the overall CDI burden, use of the ICD-9-CM discharge diagnosis code for CDI, without present-on-admission code assignment, is not an acceptable surrogate for surveillance for hospital-onset CDI.
The incidence of surgical site infection (SSI) after hysterectomy ranges widely from 2% to 21%. A specific risk stratification index could help to predict more accurately the risk of incisional SSI following abdominal hysterectomy and would help determine the reasons for the wide range of reported SSI rates in individual studies. To increase our understanding of the risk factors needed to build a specific risk stratification index, we performed a retrospective multihospital analysis of risk factors for SSI after abdominal hysterectomy.
Retrospective case-control study of 545 abdominal and 275 vaginal hysterectomies from July 1, 2003, to June 30, 2005, at 4 institutions. SSIs were defined by using Centers for Disease Control and Prevention/National Nosocomial Infections Surveillance criteria. Independent risk factors for abdominal hysterectomy were identified by using logistic regression.
There were 13 deep incisional, 53 superficial incisional, and 18 organ-space SSIs after abdominal hysterectomy and 14 organ-space SSIs after vaginal hysterectomy. Because risk factors for organ-space SSI were different according to univariate analysis, we focused further analyses on incisional SSI after abdominal hysterectomy. The maximum serum glucose level within 5 days after operation was highest in patients with deep incisional SSI, lower in patients with superficial incisional SSI, and lowest in uninfected patients (median, 189, 156, and 141 mg/dL, respectively; P = .005). Independent risk factors for incisional SSI included blood transfusion (odds ratio [OR], 2.4) and morbid obesity (body mass index [BMI], >35; OR, 5.7). Duration of operation greater than the 75th percentile (OR, 1.7), obesity (BMI, 30–35; OR, 3.0), and lack of private health insurance (OR, 1.7) were marginally associated with increased odds of SSI.
Incisional SSI after abdominal hysterectomy was associated with increased BMI and blood transfusion. Longer duration of operation and lack of private health insurance were marginally associated with SSI.
To evaluate the impact of cases of community-onset, healthcare facility (HCF)-associated Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) on the incidence and outbreak detection of CDI.
A retrospective multicenter cohort study.
Five university-affiliated, acute care HCFs in the United States.
We collected data (including results of C. difficile toxin assays of stool samples) on all of the adult patients admitted to the 5 hospitals during the period from July I, 2000, through June 30, 2006. CDI cases were classified as HCF-onset if they were diagnosed more than 48 hours after admission or as community-onset, HCF-associated if they were diagnosed within 48 hours after admission and if the patient had recently been discharged from the HCF. Four surveillance definitions were compared: cases of HCF-onset CDI only (hereafter referred to as HCF-onset CDI) and cases of HCF-onset and community-onset, HCF-associated CDI diagnosed within 30, 60, and 90 days after the last discharge from the study hospital (hereafter referred to as 30-day, 60-day, and 90-day CDI, respectively). Monthly CDI rates were compared. Control charts were used to identify potential CDI outbreaks.
The rate of 30-day CDI was significantly higher than the rate of HCF-onset CDI at 2 HCFs (P < .01 ). The rates of 30-day CDI were not statistically significantly different from the rates of 60-day or 90-day CDI at any HCF. The correlations between each HCF's monthly rates of HCF-onset CDI and 30-day CDI were almost perfect (ρ range, 0.94-0.99; P < .001). Overall, 12 time points had a CDI rate that was more than 3 standard deviations above the mean, including 11 time points identified using the definition for HCF-onset CDI and 9 time points identified using the definition for 30-day CDI, with discordant results at 4 time points (k = 0.794; P < .001).
Tracking cases of both community-onset and HCF-onset, HCF-associated CDI captures significantly more CDI cases, but surveillance of HCF-onset, HCF-associated CDI alone is sufficient to detect an outbreak.
Limitations of access have long restricted exploration and investigation of the cavities beneath ice shelves to a small number of drillholes. Studies of sea-ice underwater morphology are limited largely to scientific utilization of submarines. Remotely operated vehicles, tethered to a mother ship by umbilical cable, have been deployed to investigate tidewater-glacier and ice-shelf margins, but their range is often restricted. The development of free-flying autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs) with ranges of tens to hundreds of kilometres enables extensive missions to take place beneath sea ice and floating ice shelves. Autosub2 is a 3600 kg, 6.7 m long AUV, with a 1600 m operating depth and range of 400 km, based on the earlier Autosub1 which had a 500 m depth limit. A single direct-drive d.c. motor and five-bladed propeller produce speeds of 1–2 m s−1. Rear-mounted rudder and stern-plane control yaw, pitch and depth. The vehicle has three sections. The front and rear sections are free-flooding, built around aluminium extrusion space-frames covered with glass-fibre reinforced plastic panels. The central section has a set of carbon-fibre reinforced plastic pressure vessels. Four tubes contain batteries powering the vehicle. The other three house vehicle-control systems and sensors. The rear section houses subsystems for navigation, control actuation and propulsion and scientific sensors (e.g. digital camera, upward-looking 300 kHz acoustic Doppler current profiler, 200 kHz multibeam receiver). The front section contains forward-looking collision sensor, emergency abort, the homing systems, Argos satellite data and location transmitters and flashing lights for relocation as well as science sensors (e.g. twin conductivity–temperature–depth instruments, multibeam transmitter, sub-bottom profiler, AquaLab water sampler). Payload restrictions mean that a subset of scientific instruments is actually in place on any given dive. The scientific instruments carried on Autosub are described and examples of observational data collected from each sensor in Arctic or Antarctic waters are given (e.g. of roughness at the underside of floating ice shelves and sea ice).
When in its life should an individual first attempt to reproduce? How often should it breed thereafter? How much effort should it invest in each attempt? And does this vary between individuals in the same population? These questions are central to the many studies investigating adaptive life-history strategies, across the taxonomic spectrum, yet detailed answers are provided by few, particularly in large, free-ranging species. This is because comprehensive data on the costs and benefits of reproduction throughout life are essential for the task, but are difficult to collect in the wild, especially for males in polygynous species. With Soay sheep, however, we have the detailed information with which to investigate the reproductive benefits and costs for both sexes, and the way these vary with the environment and individual phenotype.
In Soays, the costs and benefits of reproduction take on even greater significance given the domestic roots of the population. A brief examination of the Soay life-history reveals unusual patterns that have led many to question whether these are simply the maladaptive legacy of past domestication. Soays certainly bear the hallmarks of artificial selection for high productivity (Chapter 1). Both sexes, but particularly males, mature early (Fig. 9.1) despite incurring high survival costs; and females continue to display fatally high fecundity at peak population densities (Chapter 2). These costs suggest that Soays are too fecund for their own good. Yet it remains possible that these are not the result of domestication, but are adaptive responses to their environment.