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Through drinking water, humans are commonly exposed to atrazine, a herbicide that acts as an endocrine and metabolic disruptor. It interferes with steroidogenesis, including promoting oestrogen production and altering cell metabolism. However, its precise impact on uterine development remains unknown. This study aimed to determine the effect of prolonged atrazine exposure on the uterus. Pregnant mice (n = 5/group) received 5 mg/kg body weight/day atrazine or DMSO in drinking water from gestational day 9.5 until weaning. Offspring continued to be exposed until 3 or 6 months of age (n = 5–9/group), when uteri were collected for morphological and molecular analyses and steroid quantification. Endometrial hyperplasia and leiomyoma were evident in the uteri of atrazine-exposed mice. Uterine oestrogen concentration, oestrogen receptor expression, and localisation were similar between groups, at both ages (P > 0.1). The expression and localisation of key epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) genes and proteins, critical for tumourigenesis, remained unchanged between treatments, at both ages (P > 0.1). Hence, oestrogen-mediated changes to established EMT markers do not appear to underlie abnormal uterine morphology evident in atrazine exposure mice. This is the first report of abnormal uterine morphology following prolonged atrazine exposure starting in utero, it is likely that the abnormalities identified would negatively affect female fertility, although mechanisms remain unknown and require further study.
Retrospectively apply criteria from Center to Advance Palliative Care to a cohort of children treated in a cardiac ICU and compare children who received a palliative care consultation to those who were eligible for but did not receive one.
Medical records of children admitted to a cardiac ICU between January 2014 and June 2017 were reviewed. Selected criteria include cardiac ICU length of stay >14 days and/or ≥ 3 hospitalisations within a 6-month period.
Measurements and Results:
A consultation occurred in 17% (n = 48) of 288 eligible children. Children who received a consult had longer cardiac ICU (27 days versus 17 days; p < 0.001) and hospital (91 days versus 35 days; p < 0.001) lengths of stay, more complex chronic conditions at the end of first hospitalisation (3 versus1; p < 0.001) and the end of the study (4 vs.2; p < 0.001), and higher mortality (42% versus 7%; p < 0.001) when compared with the non-consulted group. Of the 142 pre-natally diagnosed children, only one received a pre-natal consult and 23 received it post-natally. Children who received a consultation (n = 48) were almost 2 months of age at the time of the consult.
Less than a quarter of eligible children received a consultation. The consultation usually occurred in the context of medical complexity, high risk of mortality, and at an older age, suggesting potential opportunities for more and earlier paediatric palliative care involvement in the cardiac ICU. Screening criteria to identify patients for a consultation may increase the use of palliative care services in the cardiac ICU.
This two-part article examines the global public health (GPH) information system deficits emerging in the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. It surveys past, missed opportunities for public health (PH) information system and operational improvements, examines current megatrend changes to information management, and describes a new multi-disciplinary model for population-based management (PBM) supported by a GPH Database applicable to pandemics and GPH crises.
The catastrophic declines of three species of ‘Critically Endangered’ Gyps vultures in South Asia were caused by unintentional poisoning by the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) diclofenac. Despite a ban on its veterinary use in 2006 (India, Nepal, Pakistan) and 2010 (Bangladesh), residues of diclofenac have continued to be found in cattle carcasses and in dead wild vultures. Another NSAID, meloxicam, has been shown to be safe to vultures. From 2012 to 2018, we undertook covert surveys of pharmacies in India, Nepal and Bangladesh to investigate the availability and prevalence of NSAIDs for the treatment of livestock. The purpose of the study was to establish whether diclofenac continued to be sold for veterinary use, whether the availability of meloxicam had increased and to determine which other veterinary NSAIDs were available. The availability of diclofenac declined in all three countries, virtually disappearing from pharmacies in Nepal and Bangladesh, highlighting the advances made in these two countries to reduce this threat to vultures. In India, diclofenac still accounted for 10–46% of all NSAIDs offered for sale for livestock treatment in 2017, suggesting weak enforcement of existing regulations and a continued high risk to vultures. Availability of meloxicam increased in all countries and was the most common veterinary NSAID in Nepal (89.9% in 2017). Although the most widely available NSAID in India in 2017, meloxicam accounted for only 32% of products offered for sale. In Bangladesh, meloxicam was less commonly available than the vulture-toxic NSAID ketoprofen (28% and 66%, respectively, in 2018), despite the partial government ban on ketoprofen in 2016. Eleven different NSAIDs were recorded, several of which are known or suspected to be toxic to vultures. Conservation priorities should include awareness raising, stricter implementation of current bans, bans on other vulture-toxic veterinary NSAIDs, especially aceclofenac and nimesulide, and safety-testing of other NSAIDs on Gyps vultures to identify safe and toxic drugs.
The Oxford English Dictionary defines psychopharmacology as ‘the scientific study of the effect of drugs on the mind and behaviour’ (Oxford English Dictionary Online, 2018). The earliest reference to the term was in 1548 when Reinhard Lorichius published the prayer book Psychopharmakon, hoc est Medicina Animae (Lehmann, 1993; Wolman, 1977). Lorichius coined the term ‘psychopharmakon’ to refer to spiritual medicine that could reduce human suffering. The word psychopharmacology was first used in a scientific paper in 1920 by a pharmacologist working at Johns Hopkins University who wrote a short paper entitled Contributions to psychopharmacology (Macht, 1920).
Introduction: Paramedics commonly administer intravenous dextrose to severely hypoglycemic patients. Typically, the treatment provided is a 25g ampule of 50% dextrose (D50). This dose of D50 is meant to ensure a return to consciousness. However, this dose may be unnecessary and lead to harm or difficulties regulating blood glucose post treatment. We hypothesize that a lower dose such as dextrose 10% (D10) or titrating the D50 to desired level of consciousness may be optimal and avoid adverse events. Methods: We systematically searched Medline, Embase, CINAHL and Cochrane Central on June 5th 2019. PRISMA guidelines were followed. The GRADE methods and risk of bias assessments were applied to determine the certainty of the evidence. We included primary literature investigating the use of intravenous dextrose in hypoglycemic diabetic patients presenting to paramedics or the emergency department. Outcomes of interest were related to the safe and effective reversal of symptoms and blood glucose levels (BGL). Results: 660 abstracts were screened, 40 full text articles, with eight studies included. Data from three randomized controlled trials and five observational studies were analyzed. A single RCT comparing D10 to D50 was identified. The primary significant finding of the study was an increased post-treatment glycemic profile by 3.2 mmol/L in the D50 group; no other outcomes had significant differences between groups. When comparing pooled data from all the included studies we find higher symptom resolution in the D10 group compared to the D50 group; at 99.8% and 94.9% respectively. However, the mean time to resolution was approximately 4 minutes longer in the D10 group (4.1 minutes (D50) and 8 minutes (D10)). There was more need for subsequent doses in the D10 group at 23.0% versus 16.5% in the D50 group. The post treatment glycemic profile was lower in the D10 group at 5.9 mmol/L versus 8.5 mmol/L in the D50 group. Both treatments had nearly complete resolution of hypoglycemia; 98.7% (D50) and 99.2% (D10). No adverse events were observed in the D10 group (0/871) compared to 12/133 adverse events in the D50 group. Conclusion: D10 may be as effective as D50 at resolving symptoms and correcting hypoglycemia. Although the desired effect can take several minutes longer there appear to be fewer adverse events. The post treatment glycemic profile may facilitate less challenging ongoing glucose management by the patients.
We know from neurological diseases that there is not only one way to hallucinate. This might also be the case in the psychiatric field. During a trial on refractory verbal hallucinations, we rediscovered a subgroup described under several names in France (Délire chronique d’évolution systématique 1882, Psychose Hallucinatoire Chronique 1911-1953), England (Late Paraphrenia, 1954) and Germany (Affective Paraphrenia - AP, 1968). Roughly, AP can be viewed as the core of paranoid schizophrenia.
We compared 10 AP patients with refractory hallucinations to 35 healthy controls with structural and functional MRI (fMRI). We looked for regions that presented with both grey matter deficit relative to controls and with hallucination-related activity. The lateral orbito-frontal cortex (LOF) was bilaterally involved both anatomically and functionally.
Using fMRI, we studied whole brain functional connectivity, both as a trait factor, i.e. hallucinators vs controls, and as a state factor, i.e. ON vs OFF hallucinations in the same patient. As a trait, functional connectivity was significantly increased between left and right LOF in patients relative to controls; however as a state, functional connectivity dropped to zero between left LOF, left and right superior temporal sulcus (STS) when ON relative to OFF hallucination.
In a larger group of AP patients without ongoing hallucinations, the LOF was still disconnected from the cingulate and temporal regions, in comparison not only to controls, but also relative to non AP type schizophrenias, most of whom also hallucinate during episodes.
We will discuss the “LOF-story hypothesis” for AP patients and their hallucinations.
Use of the herbicide atrazine (ATR) is banned in the European Union; yet, it is still widely used in the USA and Australia. ATR is known to alter testosterone and oestrogen production and thus reproductive characteristics in numerous species. In this proof of concept study, we examined the effect of ATR exposure, at a supra-environmental dose (5 mg/kg bw/day), beginning on E9.5 in utero, prior to sexual differentiation of the reproductive tissues, until 26 weeks of age, on the development of the mouse penis. Notably, this is the first study to specifically investigate whether ATR can affect penis characteristics. We show that ATR exposure, beginning in utero, causes a shortening (demasculinisation) of penis structures and increases the incidence of hypospadias in mice. These data indicate the need for further studies of ATR on human reproductive development and fertility, especially considering its continued and widespread use.
Advancements in computer technology have enabled three-dimensional (3D) reconstruction, data-stitching, and manipulation of 3D data obtained on X-ray imaging systems such as micro-computed tomography (μ-CT). Likewise, intuitive evaluation of these 3D datasets can be enhanced by recent advances in virtual reality (VR) hardware and software. Additionally, the generation, viewing, and manipulation of 3D X-ray diffraction datasets, such as pole figures employed for texture analysis, can also benefit from these advanced visualization techniques. We present newly-developed protocols for porting 3D data (as TIFF-stacks) into a Unity gaming software platform so that data may be toured, manipulated, and evaluated within a more-intuitive VR environment through the use of game-like controls and 3D headsets. We demonstrate this capability by rendering μ-CT data of a polymer dogbone test bar at various stages of in situ mechanical strain. An additional experiment is presented showing 3D XRD data collected on an aluminum test block with vias. These 3D XRD data for texture analysis (χ, ϕ, 2θ dimensions) enables the viewer to visually inspect 3D pole figures and detect the presence or absence of in-plane residual macrostrain. These two examples serve to illustrate the benefits of this new methodology for multidimensional analysis.
Introduction: Oxygen is commonly administered to prehospital patients presenting with acute myocardial infarction (AMI). We conducted a systematic review to determine if oxygen administration, in AMI, impacts patient outcomes. Methods: We conducted a systematic search using MeSH terms and keywords in Medline, Embase, Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, Cochrane Central, clinicaltrials.gov and ISRCTN for relevant randomized controlled trials and observational studies comparing oxygen administration and no oxygen administration. The outcomes of interest were: mortality (≤30 days, in-hospital, and intermediate 2-11 months), infarct size, and major adverse cardiac events (MACE). Risk of Bias assessments were performed and GRADE methodology was employed to assess quality and overall confidence in the effect estimate. A meta-analysis was performed using RevMan 5 software. Results: Our search yielded 1192 citations of which 48 studies were reviewed as full texts and a total of 8 studies were included in the analysis. All evidence was considered low or very low quality. Five studies reported on mortality finding low quality evidence of no benefit or harm. Low quality evidence demonstrated no benefit or harm from supplemental oxygen administration. Similarly, no benefit or harm was found in MACE or infarct size (very low quality). Normoxia was defined as oxygen saturation measured via pulse oximetry at ≥90% in one recent study and ≥94% in another. Conclusion: We found low and very low quality evidence that the administration of supplemental oxygen to normoxic patients experiencing AMI, provides no clear harm nor benefit for mortality or MACE. The evidence on infarct size was inconsistent and warrants further prospective examination.
Introduction: Opioids are routinely administered for analgesia to prehospital patients experiencing chest discomfort from acute myocardial infarction (AMI). We conducted a systematic review to determine if opioid administration impacts patient outcomes. Methods: We conducted a systematic search using MeSH terms and keywords in Medline, Embase, Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, Cochrane Central and Clinicaltrials.gov for relevant randomized controlled trials and observational studies comparing opioid administration in AMI patients from 1990 to 2017. The outcomes of interest were: all-cause short-term mortality (≤30 days), major adverse cardiac events (MACE), platelet activity and aggregation, immediate adverse events, infarct size, and analgesia. Included studies were hand searched for additional citations. Risk of Bias assessments were performed and GRADE methodology was employed to assess quality and overall confidence in the effect estimate. Results: Our search yielded 3001 citations of which 19 studies were reviewed as full texts and a total of 9 studies were included in the analysis. The studies predominantly reported on morphine as the opioid. Five studies reported on mortality (≤30 days), seven on MACE, four on platelet activity and aggregation, two on immediate adverse events, two on infarct size and none on analgesic effect. We found low quality evidence suggesting no benefit or harm in terms of mortality or MACE. However, low quality evidence indicates that opioids increase infarct size. Low-quality evidence also shows reduced serum P2Y12 (eg: clopidogrel and ticagrelor) active metabolite levels and increased platelet reactivity in the first several hours post administration following an increase in vomiting. Conclusion: We find low and very low quality evidence that the administration of opioids in STEMI may be adversely related to vomiting and some surrogate outcomes including increased infarct size, reduced serum P2Y12 levels, and increased platelet activity. We found no clear benefit or harm on patient-oriented clinical outcomes including mortality.
Introduction: The Prehospital Evidence-Based Practice (PEP) program is an online, freely accessible, continuously updated Emergency Medical Services (EMS) evidence repository. This summary describes the research evidence for the identification and management of adult patients suffering from sepsis syndrome or septic shock. Methods: PubMed was searched in a systematic manner. One author reviewed titles and abstracts for relevance and two authors appraised each study selected for inclusion. Primary outcomes were extracted. Studies were scored by trained appraisers on a three-point Level of Evidence (LOE) scale (based on study design and quality) and a three-point Direction of Evidence (DOE) scale (supportive, neutral, or opposing findings based on the studies’ primary outcome for each intervention). LOE and DOE of each intervention were plotted on an evidence matrix (DOE x LOE). Results: Eighty-eight studies were included for 15 interventions listed in PEP. The interventions with the most evidence were related to identification tools (ID) (n = 26, 30%) and early goal directed therapy (EGDT) (n = 21, 24%). ID tools included Systematic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (SIRS), quick Sequential Organ Failure Assessment (qSOFA) and other unique measures. The most common primary outcomes were related to diagnosis (n = 30, 34%), mortality (n = 40, 45%) and treatment goals (e.g. time to antibiotic) (n = 14, 16%). The evidence rank for the supported interventions were: supportive-high quality (n = 1, 7%) for crystalloid infusion, supportive-moderate quality (n = 7, 47%) for identification tools, prenotification, point of care lactate, titrated oxygen, temperature monitoring, and supportive-low quality (n = 1, 7%) for vasopressors. The benefit of prehospital antibiotics and EGDT remain inconclusive with a neutral DOE. There is moderate level evidence opposing use of high flow oxygen. Conclusion: EMS sepsis interventions are informed primarily by moderate quality supportive evidence. Several standard treatments are well supported by moderate to high quality evidence, as are identification tools. However, some standard in-hospital therapies are not supported by evidence in the prehospital setting, such as antibiotics, and EGDT. Based on primary outcomes, no identification tool appears superior. This evidence analysis can guide selection of appropriate prehospital therapies.
Introduction: Long-term immobility has detrimental effects for critically ill patients admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU) including ICU-acquired weakness. Early mobilization of patients admitted to ICU has been demonstrated to be a safe, feasible and effective strategy to improve patient outcomes. The optimal mobilization of trauma ICU patients has not been extensively studied. Our objective was to determine the impact of an early mobilization protocol on outcomes among trauma patients admitted to the ICU. Methods: We analyzed all adult trauma patients ( > 18 years old) admitted to ICU over a 2-year period prior to and following implementation of an early mobilization protocol, allowing for a 1-year transition period. Data were collected from the Nova Scotia Trauma Registry. We compared patient characteristics and outcomes (mortality, length of stay [LOS], ventilator days) between the pre- and post-implementation groups. Associations between early mobilization and clinical outcomes were estimated using binary and linear regression models. Results: Overall, there were 526 patients included in the analysis (292 pre-implementation, 234 post-implementation). The study population ranged in age from 18 to 92 years (mean age 49.0 ± 20.4 years) and 74.3% of all patients were male. The pre- and post-implementation groups were similar in age, sex, and injury severity. In-hospital mortality was reduced in the post-implementation group (25.3% vs. 17.5%; p = 0.031). In addition, there was a reduction in ICU mortality in the post-implementation group (21.6% vs. 12.8%; p = 0.009). We did not observe any difference in overall hospital LOS, ICU LOS, or ventilator days between the two groups. Compared to the pre-implementation period, trauma patients admitted to the ICU following protocol implementation were less likely to die in-hospital (OR = 0.52, 95% CI 0.30-0.91; p = 0.021) or in the ICU (OR = 0.40, 95% CI 0.21- 0.76, p = 0.005). Results were similar following a sensitivity analysis limited to patients with blunt or penetrating injuries. There was no difference between the pre- and post-implementation groups with respect to in-hospital LOS, ICU LOS, or the number of ventilator days. Conclusion: We found that trauma patients admitted to ICU during the post-implementation period had decreased odds of in-hospital mortality and ICU mortality. Ours is the first study to demonstrate a significant reduction in trauma mortality following implementation of an ICU mobility protocol.
Introduction: Previous systematic reviews suggest early mobilization in the intensive care unit (ICU) population is feasible, safe, and may improve outcomes. Only one review investigated mobilization specifically in trauma ICU patients and failed to identify any relevant articles. The objective of the present systematic review was to conduct an up-to-date search of the literature to assess the effect of early mobilization in adult trauma ICU patients on mortality, length of stay (LOS) and duration of mechanical ventilation. Methods: We performed a systematic search of four electronic databases (Ovid MEDLINE, Embase, CINAHL, Cochrane Library) and the grey literature. To be included, studies must have compared early mobilization to delayed or no mobilization among trauma patients admitted to the ICU. Meta-analysis was performed to determine the effect of early mobilization on mortality, hospital LOS, ICU LOS, and duration of mechanical ventilation. Results: The search yielded 2,975 records from the 4 databases and 7 records from grey literature and bibliographic searches; of these, 9 articles met all eligibility criteria and were included in the analysis. There were 7 studies performed in the United States, 1 study from China and 1 study from Norway. Study populations included neurotrauma (3 studies), blunt abdominal trauma (2 studies), mixed injury types (2 studies) and burns (1 study). Cohorts ranged in size from 15 to 1,132 patients (median, 63) and varied in inclusion criteria. Most studies used some form of stepwise progressive mobility protocol. Two studies used simple ambulation as the mobilization measure, and 1 study employed upright sitting as their only intervention. Time to commencement of the intervention was variable across studies, and only 2 studies specified the timing of mobilization initiation. We did not detect a difference in mortality with early mobilization, although the pooled risk ratio (RR) was reduced (RR 0.90, 95% CI 0.74 to 1.09). Hospital LOS and ICU LOS were decreased with early mobilization, though this difference did not reach significance. Duration of mechanical ventilation was significantly shorter in the early mobilization group (mean difference −1.18. 95% CI −2.17 to −0.19). Conclusion: Our review identified few studies that examined mobilization of critically ill trauma patients in the ICU. On meta-analysis, early mobilization was found to reduce duration of mechanical ventilation, but the effects on mortality and LOS were not significant.
Despite the significant health benefits of breastfeeding for the mother and the infant, economic class and race disparities in breastfeeding rates persist. Support for breastfeeding from the father of the infant is associated with higher rates of breastfeeding initiation. However, little is known about the factors that may promote or deter father support of breastfeeding, especially in fathers exposed to contextual adversity such as poverty and violence. Using a mixed methods approach, the primary aims of the current work were to (1) elicit, using qualitative methodology, the worries, barriers and promotive factors for breastfeeding that expectant mothers and fathers identify as they prepare to parent a new infant, and (2) to examine factors that influence the parental breastfeeding intentions of both mothers and fathers using quantitative methodology. A sample (N=95) of expectant, third trimester mothers and fathers living in a low-income, urban environment in Midwestern USA, were interviewed from October 2013 to February 2015 about their infant feeding intentions. Compared with fathers, mothers more often identified the benefits of breastfeeding for the infant’s health and the economic advantage of breastfeeding. Mothers also identified more personal and community breastfeeding support resources. Fathers viewed their own support of breastfeeding as important but expressed a lack of knowledge about the breastfeeding process and often excluded themselves from discussions about infant feeding. The results point to important targets for interventions that aim to increase breastfeeding initiation rates in vulnerable populations in the US by increasing father support for breastfeeding.
Legionnaires’ disease (LD) incidence in the USA has quadrupled since 2000. Health departments must detect LD outbreaks quickly to identify and remediate sources. We tested the performance of a system to prospectively detect simulated LD outbreaks in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, USA. We generated three simulated LD outbreaks based on published outbreaks. After verifying no significant clusters existed in surveillance data during 2014–2016, we embedded simulated outbreak-associated cases into 2016, assigning simulated residences and report dates. We mimicked daily analyses in 2016 using the prospective space-time permutation scan statistic to detect clusters of ⩽30 and ⩽180 days using 365-day and 730-day baseline periods, respectively. We used recurrence interval (RI) thresholds of ⩾20, ⩾100 and ⩾365 days to define significant signals. We calculated sensitivity, specificity and positive and negative predictive values for daily analyses, separately for each embedded outbreak. Two large, simulated cooling tower-associated outbreaks were detected. As the RI threshold was increased, sensitivity and negative predictive value decreased, while positive predictive value and specificity increased. A small, simulated potable water-associated outbreak was not detected. Use of a RI threshold of ⩾100 days minimised time-to-detection while maximizing positive predictive value. Health departments should consider using this system to detect community-acquired LD outbreaks.
A cluster of Salmonella Paratyphi B variant L(+) tartrate(+) infections with indistinguishable pulsed-field gel electrophoresis patterns was detected in October 2015. Interviews initially identified nut butters, kale, kombucha, chia seeds and nutrition bars as common exposures. Epidemiologic, environmental and traceback investigations were conducted. Thirteen ill people infected with the outbreak strain were identified in 10 states with illness onset during 18 July–22 November 2015. Eight of 10 (80%) ill people reported eating Brand A raw sprouted nut butters. Brand A conducted a voluntary recall. Raw sprouted nut butters are a novel outbreak vehicle, though contaminated raw nuts, nut butters and sprouted seeds have all caused outbreaks previously. Firms producing raw sprouted products, including nut butters, should consider a kill step to reduce the risk of contamination. People at greater risk for foodborne illness may wish to consider avoiding raw products containing raw sprouted ingredients.
Movement disorders associated with exposure to antipsychotic drugs are common and stigmatising but underdiagnosed.
To develop and evaluate a new clinical procedure, the ScanMove instrument, for the screening of antipsychotic-associated movement disorders for use by mental health nurses.
Item selection and content validity assessment for the ScanMove instrument were conducted by a panel of neurologists, psychiatrists and a mental health nurse, who operationalised a 31-item screening procedure. Interrater reliability was measured on ratings for 30 patients with psychosis from ten mental health nurses evaluating video recordings of the procedure. Criterion and concurrent validity were tested comparing the ScanMove instrument-based rating of 13 mental health nurses for 635 community patients from mental health services with diagnostic judgement of a movement disorder neurologist based on the ScanMove instrument and a reference procedure comprising a selection of commonly used rating scales.
Interreliability analysis showed no systematic difference between raters in their prediction of any antipsychotic-associated movement disorders category. On criterion validity testing, the ScanMove instrument showed good sensitivity for parkinsonism (90%) and hyperkinesia (89%), but not for akathisia (38%), whereas specificity was low for parkinsonism and hyperkinesia, and moderate for akathisia.
The ScanMove instrument demonstrated good feasibility and interrater reliability, and acceptable sensitivity as a mental health nurse-administered screening tool for parkinsonism and hyperkinesia.
During the 2009 influenza pandemic, a rapid assessment of disease severity was a challenge as a significant proportion of cases did not seek medical care; care-seeking behaviour changed and the proportion asymptomatic was unknown. A random-digit-dialling telephone survey was undertaken during the 2011/12 winter season in England and Wales to address the feasibility of answering these questions. A proportional quota sampling strategy was employed based on gender, age group, geographical location, employment status and level of education. Households were recruited pre-season and re-contacted immediately following peak seasonal influenza activity. The pre-peak survey was undertaken in October 2011 with 1061 individuals recruited and the post-peak telephone survey in March 2012. Eight hundred and thirty-four of the 1061 (78.6%) participants were successfully re-contacted. Their demographic characteristics compared well to national census data. In total, 8.4% of participants self-reported an influenza-like illness (ILI) in the previous 2 weeks, with 3.2% conforming to the World Health Organization (WHO) ILI case definition. In total, 29.6% of the cases reported consulting their general practitioner. 54.1% of the 1061 participants agreed to be re-contacted about providing biological samples. A population-based cohort was successfully recruited and followed up. Longitudinal survey methodology provides a practical tool to assess disease severity during future pandemics.