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Standards for microprobe analysis can be made to serve two purposes: (a) proposed correction models can be tested with them, and (b) analysis can be performed more accurately in the system which includes the standard. Few microprobe standards presently are available because they must be homogeneous on the micron scale and their composition must be known accurately. A modified Duwez splat cooling method is described which enables the investigator to prepare suitable standards in most cases. The apparatus which is relatively simple and inexpensive is described in detail. The systems Au-Si and Al-Mg were chosen as test cases. Suitable standards were prepared at different concentrations in each system. The analytical results for all compositions in Al-Mg are presented and discussed.
Transcatheter right ventricle decompression in neonates with pulmonary atresia and intact ventricular septum is technically challenging, with risk of cardiac perforation and death. Further, despite successful right ventricle decompression, re-intervention on the pulmonary valve is common. The association between technical factors during right ventricle decompression and the risks of complications and re-intervention are not well described.
This is a multicentre retrospective study among the participating centres of the Congenital Catheterization Research Collaborative. Between 2005 and 2015, all neonates with pulmonary atresia and intact ventricular septum and attempted transcatheter right ventricle decompression were included. Technical factors evaluated included the use and characteristics of radiofrequency energy, maximal balloon-to-pulmonary valve annulus ratio, infundibular diameter, and right ventricle systolic pressure pre- and post-valvuloplasty (BPV). The primary end point was cardiac perforation or death; the secondary end point was re-intervention.
A total of 99 neonates underwent transcatheter right ventricle decompression at a median of 3 days (IQR 2–5) of age, including 63 patients by radiofrequency and 32 by wire perforation of the pulmonary valve. There were 32 complications including 10 (10.5%) cardiac perforations, of which two resulted in death. Cardiac perforation was associated with the use of radiofrequency (p=0.047), longer radiofrequency duration (3.5 versus 2.0 seconds, p=0.02), and higher maximal radiofrequency energy (7.5 versus 5.0 J, p<0.01) but not with patient weight (p=0.09), pulmonary valve diameter (p=0.23), or infundibular diameter (p=0.57). Re-intervention was performed in 36 patients and was associated with higher post-intervention right ventricle pressure (median 60 versus 50 mmHg, p=0.041) and residual valve gradient (median 15 versus 10 mmHg, p=0.046), but not with balloon-to-pulmonary valve annulus ratio, atmospheric pressure used during BPV, or the presence of a residual balloon waist during BPV. Re-intervention was not associated with any right ventricle anatomic characteristics, including pulmonary valve diameter.
Technical factors surrounding transcatheter right ventricle decompression in pulmonary atresia and intact ventricular septum influence the risk of procedural complications but not the risk of future re-intervention. Cardiac perforation is associated with the use of radiofrequency energy, as well as radiofrequency application characteristics. Re-intervention after right ventricle decompression for pulmonary atresia and intact ventricular septum is common and relates to haemodynamic measures surrounding initial BPV.
This study aimed to extend the current understanding of dissociative symptoms experienced by patients with dissociative (psychogenic, non-epileptic) seizures (DS), including psychological and somatoform types of symptomatology. An additional aim was to assess possible relationships between dissociation, traumatic experiences, post-traumatic symptoms and seizure manifestations in this group.
A total of 40 patients with DS were compared with a healthy control group (n = 43), matched on relevant demographic characteristics. Participants completed several self-report questionnaires, including the Multiscale Dissociation Inventory (MDI), Somatoform Dissociation Questionnaire-20, Traumatic Experiences Checklist and the Post-Traumatic Diagnostic Scale. Measures of seizure symptoms and current emotional distress (Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale) were also administered.
The clinical group reported significantly more psychological and somatoform dissociative symptoms, trauma, perceived impact of trauma, and post-traumatic symptoms than controls. Some dissociative symptoms (i.e. MDI disengagement, MDI depersonalization, MDI derealization, MDI memory disturbance, and somatoform dissociation scores) were elevated even after controlling for emotional distress; MDI depersonalization scores correlated positively with trauma scores while seizure symptoms correlated with MDI depersonalization, derealization and identity dissociation scores. Exploratory analyses indicated that somatoform dissociation specifically mediated the relationship between reported sexual abuse and DS diagnosis, along with depressive symptoms.
A range of psychological and somatoform dissociative symptoms, traumatic experiences and post-traumatic symptoms are elevated in patients with DS relative to healthy controls, and seem related to seizure manifestations. Further studies are needed to explore peri-ictal dissociative experiences in more detail.
The aim of this study was to describe previously unrecognised or under-recognised adverse events associated with Melody® valve implantation.
In rare diseases and conditions, it is typically not feasible to conduct large-scale safety trials before drug or device approval. Therefore, post-market surveillance mechanisms are necessary to detect rare but potentially serious adverse events.
We reviewed the United States Food and Drug Administration’s Manufacturer and User Facility Device Experience (MAUDE) database and conducted a structured literature review to evaluate adverse events associated with on- and off-label Melody® valve implantation. Adverse events were compared with those described in the prospective Investigational Device Exemption and Post-Market Approval Melody® transcatheter pulmonary valve trials.
We identified 631 adverse events associated with “on-label” Melody® valve implants and 84 adverse events associated with “off-label” implants. The most frequent “on-label” adverse events were similar to those described in the prospective trials including stent fracture (n=210) and endocarditis (n=104). Previously unrecognised or under-recognised adverse events included stent fragment embolisation (n=5), device erosion (n=4), immediate post-implant severe valvar insufficiency (n=2), and late coronary compression (n=2 cases at 5 days and 3 months after implantation). Under-recognised adverse events associated with off-label implantation included early valve failure due to insufficiency when implanted in the tricuspid position (n=7) and embolisation with percutaneous implantation in the mitral position (n=5).
Post-market passive surveillance does not demonstrate a high frequency of previously unrecognised serious adverse events with “on-label” Melody® valve implantation. Further study is needed to evaluate safety of “off-label” uses.
The Arcminute Cosmology Bolometer Array Receiver (Acbar) is a multifrequency millimeter-wave receiver optimized for observations of the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) and the Sunyaev-Zel'dovich (SZ) effect in clusters of galaxies. Acbar was installed on the 2.1 m Viper telescope at the South Pole in January 2001 and the results presented here incorporate data through July 2002. The power spectrum of the CMB at 150 GHz over the range ℓ = 150 — 3000 measured by Acbar is presented along with estimates for the values of the cosmological parameters within the context of ΛCDM models. The inclusion of ΩΛ greatly improves the fit to the power spectrum. Three-frequency images of the SZ decrement/increment are also presented for the galaxy cluster 1E0657–67.
The Universe is permeated by hot, turbulent, magnetized plasmas. Turbulent plasma is a major constituent of active galactic nuclei, supernova remnants, the intergalactic and interstellar medium, the solar corona, the solar wind and the Earth’s magnetosphere, just to mention a few examples. Energy dissipation of turbulent fluctuations plays a key role in plasma heating and energization, yet we still do not understand the underlying physical mechanisms involved. THOR is a mission designed to answer the questions of how turbulent plasma is heated and particles accelerated, how the dissipated energy is partitioned and how dissipation operates in different regimes of turbulence. THOR is a single-spacecraft mission with an orbit tuned to maximize data return from regions in near-Earth space – magnetosheath, shock, foreshock and pristine solar wind – featuring different kinds of turbulence. Here we summarize the THOR proposal submitted on 15 January 2015 to the ‘Call for a Medium-size mission opportunity in ESAs Science Programme for a launch in 2025 (M4)’. THOR has been selected by European Space Agency (ESA) for the study phase.
Societal aging is expected to impact the use of emergency medical services (EMS). Older adults are known as high users of EMS. Our primary objective was to quantify the rate of EMS use by older adults in a Canadian provincial EMS system. Our secondary objective was to compare those transported to those not transported.
We analysed data from a provincial EMS database for emergency responses between January 1, 2010 and December 31, 2010 and included all older adults (≥65 years) requesting EMS for an emergency call. We described EMS use in relation to age, sex, and resources.
There were 30,653 emergency responses for older adults in 2010, representing close to 50% of the emergency call volume and an overall response rate of 202.8 responses per 1,000 population 65 years and older. The mean age was 79.9±8.5 years for those 57.3% who were female. The median paramedic-determined Canadian Triage and Acuity Scale (CTAS) score was 3 and the mean on-scene time was 24.2 minutes. Non-transported calls (12.3%) for the elderly involved predominantly (54.9%) female patients of similar mean age (78.3 years) but lower acuity (CTAS 5) and longer average on-scene times (32.6 minutes).
We confirmed the increasingly high rate of EMS use with age to be consistent with other industrialized populations. The low-priority and non-transport calls by older adults consumed considerable resources in this provincial system and might be the areas most malleable to meet the challenges facing EMS systems.
We wanted to present our experience with the extended endoscopic approach to clival pathology, focusing on cerebrospinal fluid leak and reconstruction challenges.
We examined a consecutive series of 37 patients undergoing the extended endoscopic approach for skull base tumours, 9 patients with clival pathology. Patients were examined for the incidence of post-operative cerebrospinal fluid leak in relation to tumour pathology, location, size, reconstruction and lumbar drain.
The overall incidence of post-operative cerebrospinal fluid leak was 10.8 per cent. Seventy-five per cent of patients who had a post-operative cerebrospinal fluid leak underwent a transclival approach (p < 0.05). All patients with clival pathology who underwent an intradural dissection had a post-operative cerebrospinal fluid leak (p < 0.05).
Post-operative cerebrospinal fluid leak rates after the extended endoscopic approach have improved significantly after advancements including the vascularised nasoseptal flap. Despite this, transclival approaches continue to pose much difficulty. Further investigation is necessary to develop technical improvements that can meet the unique challenges associated with this region.
Continued monitoring of the seriousness of influenza viruses is a public health priority. We applied time-series regression models to data on cardio-respiratory mortality rates in Hong Kong from 2001 to 2011. We used surveillance data on outpatient consultations for influenza-like illness, and laboratory detections of influenza types/subtypes to construct proxy measures of influenza activity. In the model we allowed the regression coefficients for influenza to drift over time, and adjusted for temperature and humidity. The regression coefficient for influenza A(H3N2) increased significantly in 2005. The regression coefficients for influenza A(H1N1) and B were relatively stable over the period. Our model suggested an increase in seriousness of A(H3N2) in 2005, the year after the appearance of the A/Fujian/411/2002(H3N2)-like virus when the drifted A/California/7/2004(H3N2)-like virus appeared. Ongoing monitoring of mortality and influenza activity could permit identification of future changes in seriousness of influenza virus infections.
This issue of the Journal features collaborative follow-up studies of two unique pregnancy cohorts recruited during 1959–1966 in the United States. Here we introduce the Early Determinants of Adult Health (EDAH) study. EDAH was designed to compare health outcomes in midlife (age 40s) for same-sex siblings discordant on birthweight for gestational age. A sufficient sample of discordant siblings could only be obtained by combining these two cohorts in a single follow-up study. All of the subsequent six papers are either based upon the EDAH sample or are related to it in various ways. For example, three papers report results from studies that significantly extended the ‘core’ EDAH sample to address specific questions.
We first present the overall design of and rationale for the EDAH study. Then we offer a synopsis of past work with the two cohorts to provide a context for both EDAH and the related studies. Next, we describe the recruitment and assessment procedures for the core EDAH sample. This includes the process of sampling and recruitment of potential participants; a comparison of those who were assessed and not assessed based on archived data; the methods used in the adult follow-up assessment; and the characteristics at follow-up of those who were assessed. We provide online supplementary tables with much further detail. Finally, we note further work in progress on EDAH and related studies, and draw attention to the broader implications of this endeavor.
The optical and electrical properties of chrome-doped CdGeAs2 (CGA), an important non-linear optical material, are reported. CGA, a chalcopyrite semiconductor of the pseudo- III-V type, is a close ternary analog to GaAs, possessing significant differences. To date, the electrical and optical properties of as-grown undoped CGA have been controlled by a somewhat shallow dominant residual acceptor which it is the source of significant undesirable optical absorption. Highly transparent semi-insulating CGA should be attainable using compensation and counterdoping schemes similar to those used for GaAs. However, identifying suitable deep and shallow n-type and p-type dopants will require extensive empirical studies. As a starting point of survey to find deep levels, the properties of CGA:Cr have been investigated. Cr is a reasonable choice as it has been used extensively to provide a deep level in GaAs. Thermal Admittance Spectroscopy was used to examine the electrically active levels in this material. These measurements were correlated with temperature dependent Hall effect measurements, and IR absorption measurements. SIMS analysis was utilized to estimate the Cr concentration as the segregation coefficient for Cr in CGA has not been reported.. The results show that there is a p-type level introduced into the band gap at about 0.16 eV above the valence band, a value nominally 50% deeper than that of the native acceptor. The background doping as measured by Capacitance-Voltage measurements was determined to be 8 × 1016 cm−3 near the surface, and 1.0 × 1017 cm−3 in the bulk. These results are compared to similar measurements in undoped material.
We present an investigation of the diffusion and melt doping of Cu in CdGeAs2. Cu was found to be an acceptor, its introduction in the melt allowed the controlled introduction of holes from ∼8·1016 cm-3 to ∼1·1018 cm -3. Introduction of Cu from the melt was also found to improve the homogeneity of the crystal. The saturation solubility of Cu introduced via diffusion doping was found to have an exponential dependence on the diffusion temperature, from 723 K to 873 K, obeying the equation N = N0 exp (- δH / kT) with the parameters N0 = 6.10+19 cm-3, δH = 0.3 eV, and k equal to Boltzman's constant. From 873 K to 923 K, the saturation solubility was found to decrease exponentially with temperature.
Nitrate contamination of surface water resulting from inputs of agricultural drainage water is a widespread problem. To learn whether alternative agricultural practices might ameliorate this problem, we measured NO-3 in water draining from three neighboring fields from 1970 to 1992. Drainage water from two fields fertilized with N exclusively as composted and liquid manure had NO-3 concentrations less than 2 ppm (20% of the Public Health Service recommended limit for drinking water). When these fields were converted to a corn/soybean rotation fertilized with anhydrous ammonia, NO-3 concentration increased about 7- to 10-fold. On a third field, corn was always fertilized with anhydrous ammonia. Changing this field from a rotation of corn, oats and hay to corn/soybean and increasing the rate of N fertilization by about 18% almost doubled the NO-3 concentration in the drainage water. The corn/soybean rotation most prevalent in the Corn Belt today resulted in high NO-3 concentrations in the drainage water, while the alternative system prevented NO-3 problems.
Previous research has generally found that variations in relatives' affective attitudes (expressed emotion; EE) towards a schizophrenic family member could not be accounted for by differences in the severity or form of the patient's symptomatology. These findings have been based on clinicians' ratings of psychopathology in patients.
To approach the question from a different perspective, videotaped interactions between a patient and family members, obtained four to five weeks after hospital discharge, were coded for subclinical signs of psychopathology expressed by the patient. The Behavioral Subclinical Rating Scale (BSRS) was developed to compare subclinical levels of non-verbal and paralinguistic symptoms expressed by patients from both high- and low-EE families.
Highly significant differences were found in the BSRS data. Patients from high-EE families showed more hostile and unusual behaviour with relatives than those from low-EE homes, who, in contrast, showed more anxious behaviour.
These data suggest that a complex transactional model is necessary to understand how family attitudes evolve during the course of a relatives' schizophrenic disorder.