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Introduction: Although use of point of care ultrasound (PoCUS) protocols for patients with undifferentiated hypotension in the Emergency Department (ED) is widespread, our previously reported SHoC-ED study showed no clear survival or length of stay benefit for patients assessed with PoCUS. In this analysis, we examine if the use of PoCUS changed fluid administration and rates of other emergency interventions between patients with different shock types. The primary comparison was between cardiogenic and non-cardiogenic shock types. Methods: A post-hoc analysis was completed on the database from an RCT of 273 patients who presented to the ED with undifferentiated hypotension (SBP <100 or shock index > 1) and who had been randomized to receive standard care with or without PoCUS in 6 centres in Canada and South Africa. PoCUS-trained physicians performed scans after initial assessment. Shock categories and diagnoses recorded at 60 minutes after ED presentation, were used to allocate patients into subcategories of shock for analysis of treatment. We analyzed actual care delivered including initial IV fluid bolus volumes (mL), rates of inotrope use and major procedures. Standard statistical tests were employed. Sample size was powered at 0.80 (α:0.05) for a moderate difference. Results: Although there were expected differences in the mean fluid bolus volume between patients with non-cardiogenic and cardiogenic shock, there was no difference in fluid bolus volume between the control and PoCUS groups (non-cardiogenic control 1878 mL (95% CI 1550 – 2206 mL) vs. non-cardiogenic PoCUS 1687 mL (1458 – 1916 mL); and cardiogenic control 768 mL (194 – 1341 mL) vs. cardiogenic PoCUS 981 mL (341 – 1620 mL). Likewise there were no differences in rates of inotrope administration, or major procedures for any of the subcategories of shock between the control group and PoCUS group patients. The most common subcategory of shock was distributive. Conclusion: Despite differences in care delivered by subcategory of shock, we did not find any significant difference in actual care delivered between patients who were examined using PoCUS and those who were not. This may help to explain the previously reported lack of outcome difference between groups.
Introduction: Point of care ultrasound has been reported to improve diagnosis in non-traumatic hypotensive ED patients. We compared diagnostic performance of physicians with and without PoCUS in undifferentiated hypotensive patients as part of an international prospective randomized controlled study. The primary outcome was diagnostic performance of PoCUS for cardiogenic vs. non-cardiogenic shock. Methods: SHoC-ED recruited hypotensive patients (SBP < 100 mmHg or shock index > 1) in 6 centres in Canada and South Africa. We describe previously unreported secondary outcomes relating to diagnostic accuracy. Patients were randomized to standard clinical assessment (No PoCUS) or PoCUS groups. PoCUS-trained physicians performed scans after initial assessment. Demographics, clinical details and findings were collected prospectively. Initial and secondary diagnoses including shock category were recorded at 0 and 60 minutes. Final diagnosis was determined by independent blinded chart review. Standard statistical tests were employed. Sample size was powered at 0.80 (α:0.05) for a moderate difference. Results: 273 patients were enrolled with follow-up for primary outcome completed for 270. Baseline demographics and perceived category of shock were similar between groups. 11% of patients were determined to have cardiogenic shock. PoCUS had a sensitivity of 80.0% (95% CI 54.8 to 93.0%), specificity 95.5% (90.0 to 98.1%), LR+ve 17.9 (7.34 to 43.8), LR-ve 0.21 (0.08 to 0.58), Diagnostic OR 85.6 (18.2 to 403.6) and accuracy 93.7% (88.0 to 97.2%) for cardiogenic shock. Standard assessment without PoCUS had a sensitivity of 91.7% (64.6 to 98.5%), specificity 93.8% (87.8 to 97.0%), LR+ve 14.8 (7.1 to 30.9), LR- of 0.09 (0.01 to 0.58), Diagnostic OR 166.6 (18.7 to 1481) and accuracy of 93.6% (87.8 to 97.2%). There was no significant difference in sensitivity (-11.7% (-37.8 to 18.3%)) or specificity (1.73% (-4.67 to 8.29%)). Diagnostic performance was also similar between other shock subcategories. Conclusion: As reported in other studies, PoCUS based assessment performed well diagnostically in undifferentiated hypotensive patients, especially as a rule-in test. However performance was similar to standard (non-PoCUS) assessment, which was excellent in this study.
Introduction: Point of care ultrasound (PoCUS) has become an established tool in the initial management of patients with undifferentiated hypotension in the emergency department (ED). Current established protocols (e.g. RUSH and ACES) were developed by expert user opinion, rather than objective, prospective data. Recently the SHoC Protocol was published, recommending 3 core scans; cardiac, lung, and IVC; plus other scans when indicated clinically. We report the abnormal ultrasound findings from our international multicenter randomized controlled trial, to assess if the recommended 3 core SHoC protocol scans were chosen appropriately for this population. Methods: Recruitment occurred at seven centres in North America (4) and South Africa (3). Screening at triage identified patients (SBP<100 or shock index>1) who were randomized to PoCUS or control (standard care with no PoCUS) groups. All scans were performed by PoCUS-trained physicians within one hour of arrival in the ED. Demographics, clinical details and study findings were collected prospectively. A threshold incidence for positive findings of 10% was established as significant for the purposes of assessing the appropriateness of the core recommendations. Results: 138 patients had a PoCUS screen completed. All patients had cardiac, lung, IVC, aorta, abdominal, and pelvic scans. Reported abnormal findings included hyperdynamic LV function (59; 43%); small collapsing IVC (46; 33%); pericardial effusion (24; 17%); pleural fluid (19; 14%); hypodynamic LV function (15; 11%); large poorly collapsing IVC (13; 9%); peritoneal fluid (13; 9%); and aortic aneurysm (5; 4%). Conclusion: The 3 core SHoC Protocol recommendations included appropriate scans to detect all pathologies recorded at a rate of greater than 10 percent. The 3 most frequent findings were cardiac and IVC abnormalities, followed by lung. It is noted that peritoneal fluid was seen at a rate of 9%. Aortic aneurysms were rare. This data from the first RCT to compare PoCUS to standard care for undifferentiated hypotensive ED patients, supports the use of the prioritized SHoC protocol, though a larger study is required to confirm these findings.
Introduction: Point of care ultrasound (PoCUS) is an established tool in the initial management of patients with undifferentiated hypotension in the emergency department (ED). While PoCUS protocols have been shown to improve early diagnostic accuracy, there is little published evidence for any mortality benefit. We report the findings from our international multicenter randomized controlled trial, assessing the impact of a PoCUS protocol on survival and key clinical outcomes. Methods: Recruitment occurred at 7 centres in North America (4) and South Africa (3). Scans were performed by PoCUS-trained physicians. Screening at triage identified patients (SBP<100 or shock index>1), randomized to PoCUS or control (standard care and no PoCUS) groups. Demographics, clinical details and study findings were collected prospectively. Initial and secondary diagnoses were recorded at 0 and 60 minutes, with ultrasound performed in the PoCUS group prior to secondary assessment. The primary outcome measure was 30-day/discharge mortality. Secondary outcome measures included diagnostic accuracy, changes in vital signs, acid-base status, and length of stay. Categorical data was analyzed using Fishers test, and continuous data by Student T test and multi-level log-regression testing. (GraphPad/SPSS) Final chart review was blinded to initial impressions and PoCUS findings. Results: 258 patients were enrolled with follow-up fully completed. Baseline comparisons confirmed effective randomization. There was no difference between groups for the primary outcome of mortality; PoCUS 32/129 (24.8%; 95% CI 14.3-35.3%) vs. Control 32/129 (24.8%; 95% CI 14.3-35.3%); RR 1.00 (95% CI 0.869 to 1.15; p=1.00). There were no differences in the secondary outcomes; ICU and total length of stay. Our sample size has a power of 0.80 (α:0.05) for a moderate effect size. Other secondary outcomes are reported separately. Conclusion: This is the first RCT to compare PoCUS to standard care for undifferentiated hypotensive ED patients. We did not find any mortality or length of stay benefits with the use of a PoCUS protocol, though a larger study is required to confirm these findings. While PoCUS may have diagnostic benefits, these may not translate into a survival benefit effect.
Introduction: We previously reported that a targeted knowledge translation (KT) intervention was associated with a trend towards increased awareness and knowledge of the Choosing Wisely Canada (CWC) emergency medicine (EM) recommendations. We wished to assess if the intervention changed physician practice, specifically looking at the imperative “do not order lumbar XRs for non-traumatic low back pain unless red flags exist”. Methods: A departmental KT initiative was implemented in April 2016 and consisted of a 1-hour seminar reviewing the CWC-EM recommendations, access to a video cast, departmental posters, and a before and after awareness survey. The effectiveness of our intervention was assessed by analyzing the frequency of lumbar XR imaging conducted for low back pain before and after the introduction of our intervention at a tertiary teaching hospital emergency department. All patient visits for the complaint of low back pain were included. The rates of XR imaging from June 2014 to September 2014 for the pre-intervention period and June 2016 to September 2016 for the post-intervention period were collected and analyzed using Fisher exact tests. A sample size of 683 was required to detect a 5% change with an alpha of 0.05 and a power of 80%. Results: Baseline characteristics of patients were similar for the pre- and post-intervention periods. There was a total of 781 patient visits for low back pain in June to September 2014 and 672 in June to September 2016. The XR imaging rate for low back pain increased from 12% (95% CI 9.9-14.5) to 16.2% (95% CI 13.6-19.2) following the intervention (p=0.023). Conclusion: We previously demonstrated a trend towards increased awareness and knowledge of the CWC EM recommendations following a knowledge translation initiative. Baseline XR imaging rates for low back pain were lower than what has been reported. We observed that our intervention was associated with an increased frequency of imaging for low back pain. This may be due to a contrarian effect. We feel this calls into question the role of knowledge translation initiatives where physician practice already closely adheres to pre-established recommendations.
Introduction: Point of Care Ultrasound (PoCUS) protocols are commonly used to guide resuscitation for emergency department (ED) patients with undifferentiated non-traumatic hypotension. While PoCUS has been shown to improve early diagnosis, there is a minimal evidence for any outcome benefit. We completed an international multicenter randomized controlled trial (RCT) to assess the impact of a PoCUS protocol on key resuscitation markers in this group. We report diagnostic impact and mortality elsewhere. Methods: The SHoC-ED1 study compared the addition of PoCUS to standard care within the first hour in the treatment of adult patients presenting with undifferentiated hypotension (SBP<100 mmHg or a Shock Index >1.0) with a control group that did not receive PoCUS. Scans were performed by PoCUS-trained physicians. 4 North American, and 3 South African sites participated in the study. Resuscitation outcomes analyzed included volume of fluid administered in the ED, changes in shock index (SI), modified early warning score (MEWS), venous acid-base balance, and lactate, at one and four hours. Comparisons utilized a T-test as well as stratified binomial log-regression to assess for any significant improvement in resuscitation amount the outcomes. Our sample size was powered at 0.80 (α:0.05) for a moderate effect size. Results: 258 patients were enrolled with follow-up fully completed. Baseline comparisons confirmed effective randomization. There was no significant difference in mean total volume of fluid received between the control (1658 ml; 95%CI 1365-1950) and PoCUS groups (1609 ml; 1385-1832; p=0.79). Significant improvements were seen in SI, MEWS, lactate and bicarbonate with resuscitation in both the PoCUS and control groups, however there was no difference between groups. Conclusion: SHOC-ED1 is the first RCT to compare PoCUS to standard of care in hypotensive ED patients. No significant difference in fluid used, or markers of resuscitation was found when comparing the use of a PoCUS protocol to that of standard of care in the resuscitation of patients with undifferentiated hypotension.
Introduction: Point of care ultrasonography (PoCUS) is an established tool in the initial management of hypotensive patients in the emergency department (ED). It has been shown rule out certain shock etiologies, and improve diagnostic certainty, however evidence on benefit in the management of hypotensive patients is limited. We report the findings from our international multicenter RCT assessing the impact of a PoCUS protocol on diagnostic accuracy, as well as other key outcomes including mortality, which are reported elsewhere. Methods: Recruitment occurred at 4 North American and 3 Southern African sites. Screening at triage identified patients (SBP<100 mmHg or shock index >1) who were randomized to either PoCUS or control groups. Scans were performed by PoCUS-trained physicians. Demographics, clinical details and findings were collected prospectively. Initial and secondary diagnoses were recorded at 0 and 60 minutes, with ultrasound performed in the PoCUS group prior to secondary assessment. Final chart review was blinded to initial impressions and PoCUS findings. Categorical data was analyzed using Fishers two-tailed test. Our sample size was powered at 0.80 (α:0.05) for a moderate effect size. Results: 258 patients were enrolled with follow-up fully completed. Baseline comparisons confirmed effective randomization. The perceived shock category changed more frequently in the PoCUS group 20/127 (15.7%) vs. control 7/125 (5.6%); RR 2.81 (95% CI 1.23 to 6.42; p=0.0134). There was no significant difference in change of diagnostic impression between groups PoCUS 39/123 (31.7%) vs control 34/124 (27.4%); RR 1.16 (95% CI 0.786 to 1.70; p=0.4879). There was no significant difference in the rate of correct category of shock between PoCUS (118/127; 93%) and control (113/122; 93%); RR 1.00 (95% CI 0.936 to 1.08; p=1.00), or for correct diagnosis; PoCUS 90/127 (70%) vs control 86/122 (70%); RR 0.987 (95% CI 0.671 to 1.45; p=1.00). Conclusion: This is the first RCT to compare PoCUS to standard care for undifferentiated hypotensive ED patients. We found that the use of PoCUS did change physicians’ perceived shock category. PoCUS did not improve diagnostic accuracy for category of shock or diagnosis.
Introduction: Choosing Wisely is an innovative approach to address physician and patient attitudes towards low value medical tests; however, a knowledge translation (KT) gap exists. We aimed to quantify the baseline familiarity of emergency medicine (EM) physicians with the Choosing Wisely Canada (CWC) EM recommendations. We then assessed whether a structured KT initiative affected knowledge and awareness. Methods: Physicians working in urban (tertiary teaching hospital, Saint John, NB) and rural (community teaching hospital, Waterville, NB) emergency departments were asked to participate in a survey assessing awareness and knowledge of the first five CWC EM recommendations before an educational intervention. The intervention consisted of a 1-hour seminar reviewing the recommendations, access to a video cast and departmental posters. Knowledge was assessed by asking respondents to identify 80% or more of the recommendations correctly. Physicians were surveyed again at a 6-month follow up period. The Fisher exact test was used for statistical analyses. A sample size of 36 was required to detect a 30% change with an alpha of 0.05 and a power of 80%. Results: At the urban site, 16 of 25 (64%) physicians responded to the pre- and 14 of 26 (53.8%) responded to the post-intervention survey. Awareness of the EM recommendations did not increase significantly (81.3% pre; 95% CI 56.2-94.2 vs. 92.9% post; 66.4-99.9; p=0.60). There was a weak trend towards improved knowledge with 62.5% (38.5-81.6) of physicians responding correctly initially, and 85.7% (58.8-97.2; p=0.23) after the intervention. At the rural site, 8 of 11 (72.7%) physicians responded to the pre- and post-intervention survey. There was a trend towards improved awareness, (25% pre; 6.3-59.9 vs. 75% post; 40.1-93.7; p=0.13), with 50% (21.5-78.5) responding correctly pre, and 87.5% (50.8-99.9; p=0.28) after the intervention. Conclusion: We have described the current awareness and knowledge of the CWC EM recommendations. Limited by our small sample size, we report a trend towards increased awareness and knowledge at 6 months following our KT initiative in a rural setting where there was a low baseline awareness. At the urban site where baseline knowledge was high, changes seen were less significant. Further work will look at the effectiveness of our initiative on physician practice.
Aberrant emotional biases have been reported in bipolar disorder (BD), but results are inconsistent. Despite the clinical relevance of chronic mood variability in BD, there is no previous research investigating how the extent of symptom fluctuations in bipolar disorder might relate to emotional biases. This exploratory study investigated, in a large cohort of bipolar patients, whether instability in weekly mood episode symptoms and other clinical and demographic factors were related to emotional bias as measured in a simple laboratory task.
Participants (N = 271, BDI = 206, BDII = 121) completed an ‘emotional categorization and memory’ task. Weekly self-reported symptoms of depression and mania were collected prospectively. In linear regression analyses, associations between cognitive bias and mood variability were explored together with the influence of demographic and clinical factors, including current medication.
Greater accuracy in the classification of negative words relative to positive words was associated with greater instability in depressive symptoms. Furthermore, greater negative bias in free recall was associated with higher instability in manic symptoms. Participants diagnosed with BDII, compared with BDI, showed overall better word recognition and recall. Current antipsychotic use was associated with reduced instability in manic symptoms but this did not impact on emotional processing performance.
Emotional processing biases in bipolar disorder are related to instability in mood. These findings prompt further investigation into the underpinnings as well as clinical significance of mood instability.
Introduction: Point of care ultrasound has become an established tool in the initial management of patients with undifferentiated hypotension. Current established protocols (RUSH, ACES, etc) were developed by expert user opinion, rather than objective, prospective data. We wished to use reported disease incidence to develop an informed approach to PoCUS in hypotension using a “4 F’s” approach: Fluid; Form; Function; Filling. Methods: We summarized the incidence of PoCUS findings from an international multicentre RCT, and using a modified Delphi approach incorporating this data we obtained the input of 24 international experts associated with five professional organizations led by the International Federation of Emergency Medicine. The modified Delphi tool was developed to reach an international consensus on how to integrate PoCUS for hypotensive emergency department patients. Results: Rates of abnormal PoCUS findings from 151 patients with undifferentiated hypotension included left ventricular dynamic changes (43%), IVC abnormalities (27%), pericardial effusion (16%), and pleural fluid (8%). Abdominal pathology was rare (fluid 5%, AAA 2%). After two rounds of the survey, using majority consensus, agreement was reached on a SHoC-hypotension protocol comprising: A. Core: 1. Cardiac views (Sub-xiphoid and parasternal windows for pericardial fluid, cardiac form and ventricular function); 2. Lung views for pleural fluid and B-lines for filling status; and 3. IVC views for filling status; B. Supplementary: Additional cardiac views; and C. Additional views (when indicated) including peritoneal fluid, aorta, pelvic for IUP, and proximal leg veins for DVT. Conclusion: An international consensus process based on prospectively collected disease incidence has led to a proposed SHoC-hypotension PoCUS protocol comprising a stepwise clinical-indication based approach of Core, Supplementary and Additional PoCUS views.
Introduction: Point of care ultrasound (PoCUS) provides invaluable information during resuscitation efforts in cardiac arrest by determining presence/absence of cardiac activity and identifying reversible causes such as pericardial tamponade. There is no agreed guideline on how to safely and effectively incorporate PoCUS into the advanced cardiac life support (ACLS) algorithm. We consider that a consensus-based priority checklist using a “4 F’s” approach (Fluid; Form; Function; Filling), would provide a better algorithm during ACLS. Methods: The ultrasound subcommittee of the Australasian College for Emergency Medicine (ACEM) drafted a checklist incorporating PoCUS into the ACLS algorithm. This was further developed using the input of 24 international experts associated with five professional organizations led by the International Federation of Emergency Medicine. A modified Delphi tool was developed to reach an international consensus on how to integrate ultrasound into cardiac arrest algorithms for emergency department patients. Results: Consensus was reached following 3 rounds. The agreed protocol focuses on the timing of PoCUS as well as the specific clinical questions. Core cardiac windows performed during the rhythm check pause in chest compressions are the sub-xiphoid and parasternal cardiac views. Either view should be used to detect pericardial fluid, as well as examining ventricular form (e.g. right heart strain) and function, (e.g. asystole versus organized cardiac activity). Supplementary views include lung views (for absent lung sliding in pneumothorax and for pleural fluid), and IVC views for filling. Additional ultrasound applications are for endotracheal tube confirmation, proximal leg veins for DVT, or for sources of blood loss (AAA, peritoneal/pelvic fluid). Conclusion: The authors hope that this process will lead to a consensus-based SHoC-cardiac arrest guideline on incorporating PoCUS into the ACLS algorithm.
The effects of dietary carbohydrate and fat on feline health are not well understood. The effects of feeding diets moderately high in fat (HF; n 10; 30 % fat, 26 % carbohydrate as fed) or carbohydrate (HC; n 10; 11 % fat, 47 % carbohydrate), for 84 d, were investigated in healthy, adult cats (3·5 (sd 0·5) years). Data on indirect calorimetry, blood biomarkers, activity, play and cognition were collected at baseline, and at intervals throughout the study. Body composition was measured by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry at baseline and on day 85. There were no significant main effects of diet on body weight and composition. When data were analysed over study day within diet, cats fed HF diets experienced a significant increase in body fat (P = 0·001) and body weight (P = 0·043) in contrast to cats consuming the HC diet that experienced no change in body fat or body weight (P = 0·762) throughout the study. Overall, energy expenditure was similar between diets (P = 0·356 (fasted), P = 0·086 (postprandial)) and respiratory quotient declined with exposure to the HF diet and increased with exposure to the HC diet (P < 0·001; fasted and postprandial). There was no difference in insulin sensitivity as an overall effect of diet (P = 0·266). Activity declined from baseline with exposure to both diets (HC: P = 0·002; HF: P = 0·01) but was not different between diets (P = 0·247). There was no effect of diet on play (P = 0·387) and cats consuming either the HF or HC diet did not successfully learn the cognitive test. Overall, cats adapt to dietary macronutrient content, and the implications of feeding HC and HF diets on risk for adiposity as driven by metabolic and behavioural mechanisms are discussed.
Myxozoans are a group of diverse, spore-forming metazoan microparasites bound to aquatic environments. Sphaerospora dykovae (previously S. renicola) causes renal sphaerosporosis and acute swim bladder inflammation (SBI) in juvenile Cyprinus carpio carpio, in central Europe. A morphologically similar species with comparably low pathogenicity, S. angulata has been described from C. c. carpio, Carassius auratus auratus and Carassius gibelio. To clarify uncertainties and ambiguities in taxon identification in these hosts we decided to re-investigate differences in spore morphology using a statistical approach, in combination with SSU and LSU rDNA sequence analyses. We found that developing spores of S. angulata and S. dykovae cannot be distinguished morphologically and designed a duplex PCR assay for the cryptic species that demonstrated S. dykovae is specific to C. c. carpio, whereas S. angulata infects C. a. auratus and C. gibelio. The molecular identification of myxozoan blood stages in common carp and goldfish, which had previously been ascribed to Sphaerospora spp. showed that approximately 75% of blood stages were from non-sphaerosporid coelozoic species infecting these cyprinids and more than 10% were from an alien species, Myxobilatus gasterostei, developing in sticklebacks. We hereby report non-selective myxozoan host invasion and multi-species infections, whose role in SBI still requires clarification.
Two-Photon initiated polymerization (TPIP) has shown great promise for fabrication of complex micro- and nano-structures. The method has been used to fabricate such structures over small areas (< 1 mm2) because of slow fabrication speeds and resulting long fabrication times. In order for TPIP to reach practical application in a commercial setting fabrication times need to be reduced by orders of magnitude. We report results on a highly photosensitive initiation system for photoresists based on free radical and cationic polymerization, where photosensitivity is increased 102- to 103-fold compared to previously reported photoinitiation systems. Threshold writing speeds are determined for critical exposure conditions, including laser power, type and concentration of photoinitiation system, and photoresist type. Surface roughness, a critical parameter in applications such as optics and microfluidics, for example, is also used to determine threshold writing speed. The utility of the approach is demonstrated by making a cell phone keypad light guide from a microreplication tool fabricated using the highly photosensitive photoresist.
To characterize the current economic burden of ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP) and to determine which services increase the cost of VAP in North American hospitals.
Design and Setting.
We performed a retrospective, matched cohort analysis of mechanically ventilated patients enrolled in the North American Silver-Coated Endotracheal Tube (NASCENT) study, a prospective, randomized study conducted from 2002 to 2006 in 54 medical centers, including 45 teaching institutions (83.3%).
Case patients with microbiologically confirmed VAP (n = 30) were identified from 542 study participants with claims data and were matched by use of a primary diagnostic code, and subsequently by the Acute Physiology and Chronic Health Evaluation II score, to control patients without VAP (n = 90). Costs were estimated by applying hospital-specific cost-to-charge ratios based on all-payer inpatient costs associated with VAP diagnosis-related groups.
Median total charges per patient were $198,200 for case patients and $96,540 for matched control patients (P <.001); corresponding median hospital costs were $76,730 for case patients and $41,250 for control patients (P = .001). After adjusting for diagnosis-related group payments, median losses to hospitals were $32,140 for case patients and $19,360 for control patients (P = .151). The median duration of intubation was longer for case patients than for control patients (10.1 days vs 4.7 days; P < .001), as were the median duration of intensive care unit stay (18.5 days vs 8.0 days; P < .001) and the median duration of hospitalization (26.5 days vs 14.0 days; P < .001). Examples of services likely to be directly related to VAP and having higher median costs for case patients were hospital care (P < .05) and respiratory therapy (P < .05).
VAP was associated with increased hospital costs, longer duration of hospital stay, and a higher number of hospital services being affected, which underscores the need for bundled measures to prevent VAP.
NASCENT study ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT00148642.
Previous behavioural and neuroimaging studies of emotion processing in autistic spectrum disorder (ASD) have focused on the use of facial stimuli. To date, however, no studies have examined emotion processing in autism across a broad range of social signals.
This study addressed this issue by investigating emotion processing in a group of 23 adults with ASD and 23 age- and gender-matched controls. Recognition of basic emotions (‘happiness’, ‘sadness’, ‘anger’, disgust' and ‘fear’) was assessed from facial, body movement and vocal stimuli. The ability to make social judgements (such as approachability) from facial stimuli was also investigated.
Significant deficits in emotion recognition were found in the ASD group relative to the control group across all stimulus domains (faces, body movements and voices). These deficits were seen across a range of emotions. The ASD group were also impaired in making social judgements compared to the control group and this correlated with impairments in basic emotion recognition.
This study demonstrates that there are significant and broad-ranging deficits in emotion processing in ASD present across a range of stimulus domains and in the auditory and visual modality; they cannot therefore be accounted for simply in terms of impairments in face processing or in the visual modality alone. These results identify a core deficit affecting the processing of a wide range of emotional information in ASD, which contributes to the impairments in social function seen in people with this condition.
Abstract. In a monotonic sequence game, two players alternately choose elements of a sequence from some fixed ordered set. The game ends when the resulting sequence contains either an ascending subsequence of length a or a descending one of length d. We investigate the behaviour of this game when played on finite linear orders or ℚ and provide some general observations for play on arbitrary ordered sets.
Monotonic sequence games were introduced by Harary, Sagan and West in. We paraphrase the description of the rules as follows:
From a deck of cards labelled with the integers from 1 through n, two players take turns choosing a card and adding it to the right hand end of a row of cards. The game ends when there is a subsequence of a cards in the row whose values form an ascending sequence, or of d cards whose values form a descending sequence.
The parameters a, d, and n are set before the game begins. There are two possible methods for determining the winner of the game. In the normal form of the game, the winner is the player who places the last card (which forms an ascending or descending sequence of the required length). In the misère form of the game, that player is the loser. In these are called the achievement and avoidance forms of the game respectively.
Proposals for new mental health legislation make the case for using the ‘least restrictive alternative’ (Scottish Executive, 2001) and the ‘least restrictive environment’ (Department of Health & Home Office, 2000) as guiding principles in deciding the management and treatment of the patient. This appears to be the case made for introducing compulsory treatment in the community. The patient living in the community, while maintained on medication, rather than the hospital would appear to be defined as on the ‘least restrictive alternative’. This, however, takes only a limited approach to what is ‘restrictive’, which should be interpreted more widely, including the patient's view as well as that of clinicians and policy makers. Thus, a patient may see it as less restrictive during an acute phase to be in hospital and not on medication, than in the community but on medication. It is likely, given our knowledge of patients' attitudes to medication (Eastwood & Pugh, 1997), that many patients will prefer to be on oral medication rather than depot, which they see as less restrictive.