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To evaluate the association between hospital room square footage and acquisition of nosocomial Clostridium difficile infection (CDI).
A case-control study was conducted at a university hospital during the calendar year of 2011. Case patients were adult inpatients with nosocomial CDI. Control patients were hospitalized patients without CDI and were randomly selected and matched to cases in a 2:1 ratio on the basis of hospital length of stay in 3-day strata. A multivariate model was developed using conditional logistic regression to evaluate risk factors for nosocomial CDI.
A total of 75 case patients and 150 control patients were included. On multivariate analyses, greater square footage of the hospital room was associated with a significantly increased risk of acquiring CDI (odds ratio for every 50 ft2 increase, 3.00; 95% CI, 1.75–5.16; P<.001). Other factors associated with an increased risk of CDI were location in a single room (odds ratio, 3.43; 95% CI, 1.31–9.05; P=.01), malignant tumor (4.56; 1.82–11.4; P=.001), and receipt of cefepime (2.48; 1.06–5.82; P=.04) or immunosuppressants (6.90; 2.07–23.0; P=.002) within the previous 30 days.
Greater room square footage increased the risk of acquisition of CDI in the hospital setting, likely owing to increased environmental contamination and/or difficulty in effective disinfection. Future studies are needed to determine feasible and effective cleaning protocols based on patient and room characteristics.
We agree that promoting intergroup harmony “carries insidious, often unacknowledged, ‘system-justifying’ consequences” (sect. 4.1.3, para. 2) and identify several ways in which “benevolent” and “complementary” stereotypes, superordinate identification, intergroup contact, and prejudice reduction techniques can undermine social change motivation by reinforcing system-justifying beliefs. This may “keep the peace,” but it also prevents individuals and groups from tackling serious social problems, including inequality and oppression.
The microwave heatability of a low loss polymer (polypropylene) was enhanced by the addition of a conductive powder (iron). The effects of the amount (5–40% iron by volume) and size of the conductive particles on the microwave heatability were studied. The complex permittivity and complex permeability at microwave frequencies and the dc resistivity were measured. Samples were also heated in a multimode microwave cavity. Results show that microwave heating increased with increasing iron concentration. However, the penetration depth of the microwaves decreased with increasing iron content, and dramatically decreased when the polypropylene-iron composites became electrically conductive at the percolation threshold.
We have used Coherent Bragg Rod Analysis (COBRA) to investigate the atomic structure of a 5.6 nm thick Gd2O3 film epitaxially grown on a (100) GaAs substrate. COBRA is a method to directly obtain the structure of systems periodic in two-dimensions by determining the complex scattering factors along the substrate Bragg rods. The system electron density and atomic structure are obtained by Fourier transforming the complex scattering factors into real space. The results show that the stacking order of the first seven Gd2O3 film layers resembles the stacking order of Ga and As layers in GaAs then changes to the stacking order of cubic bulk Gd2O3. This behavior is distinctly different from the measured stacking order in a 2.7 nm thick Gd2O3 in which the GaAs stacking order persists throughout the entire film.
Hydroxyapatite coatings have been widely recognized for their biocompatibility and utility in promoting biointegration of implants in both osseous and soft tissue. Conventional sputtering techniques have shown some advantages over the commercially available plasma spraying method; however, the as-sputtered coatings are usually non-stoichiometric and amorphous which can cause some serious problems such as poor adhesion and excessive coating dissolution rate. A versatile right-angle radio frequency magnetron sputtering (RAMS) approach has been developed to deposit HA coatings on various substrates at low power levels. Using this alternative magnetron geometry, as-sputtered HA coatings are nearly stoichiometric, highly crystalline, and strongly bound to the substrate, as evidenced by analyses using x-ray diffraction (XRD), atomic force microscopy (AFM), x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). In particular, coatings deposited on oriented substrates show a polycrystalline XRD pattern but with some strongly preferred orientations, indicating that HA crystallization is sensitive to the nature of the substrate. Post deposition heat treatment under high temperature does not result in a marked improvement in the degree of crystallinity of the coatings. To study the biocompatibility of these coatings, murine osteoblast cells were seeded onto various substrates. Cell density counts using fluorescence microscopy show that the best osteoblast proliferation is achieved on an HA RAMS-coated titanium substrate. These experiments demonstrate that RAMS is a promising coating technique for biomedical applications.
The need for more precise image information of samples coming from fields such as materials analysis, semiconductor processing, and life sciences have pushed the boundaries of charged particle microscopy. A key limitation for the microscope maker in rising to these challenges lies in the relative technical maturity of source technology. Very few changes in sources have occurred in the last generations of tools available to the microscopist, while extensive efforts have been put into reducing aberrations that blur the probe—with their concomitant complexity and cost. Such efforts, representing incremental extensions of these technologies, cannot on their own address many of the emerging needs in nanotechnology. In addition, there are many challenges in the imaging of materials such as polymers and biological specimens that cannot be solved through resolution improvements but rather require different beam sample interaction dynamics. The helium ion microscope (HIM) is a breakthrough technology suited to such challenges.
Human variability in temperament allows a unique natural experiment where reactivity, self-regulation, and experience combine in complex ways to produce an individual personality. Personality disorders may result from changes in the way past memories filter new information in situations of emotional involvement with others. According to this view, disorders are specific to their initiating circumstances rather than a general difficulty that might extend to classes of information processing remote from triggers for the disorder. A different view suggests a more general deficit in attentional control mechanisms that might extend to a wide range of situations far from those related to the core abnormality. This paper outlines methods for examining these views and presents data from the study of borderline personality disorder, arguing in favor of high negative emotionality being combined with a deficit in an executive attentional control network. Because this attentional network has already been well described in terms of anatomy, the cognitive operations involved, development, chemical modulators, and effects of lesions and candidate genes, these findings may have implications for understanding the disorder and its treatment. We consider these implications in terms of a general approach to the study of personality development and its disorders.
The effect of visual stimulus significance on saccade
latency and accuracy in gaze shifts was investigated. Stimulus
significance refers to the temporal proximity of an imperative
stimulus. It was hypothesized that stimulus significance
serves as a cue that influences the observer's expectancy
for a forthcoming event. Twenty-one undergraduate students
participated in two experiments involving monitoring of
visual events. Stimuli were a sequence of 1,000 single-digit
integers presented one at a time at 9° of visual angle
to the left or right of a fixation point in random order.
The subject was required to make a manual response after
the presentation of a sequence of two odd integers. The
probability of the subsequent integer being odd, a “target,”
after the presentation of an odd integer was 0.75. The
integer after a target was always an even integer. When
stimulus location was unpredictable (Experiment 1), latency
of visually guided saccades to the target was shorter (p
< .01) than to the nontarget stimuli. Under the condition
of predictable stimulus location (Experiment 2), anticipatory
saccades to the target occurred earlier (p <
.01), more frequently (p < .01), and more accurately
(p < .05). Our results suggest that both timing
and accuracy of gaze shift are affected by the observer's
expectation of future events.
The use of neuropsychological tests in non-English-speaking
populations and among those with less education has been
limited because most tests have been standardized for English-speaking
populations with relatively high levels of education. In
effort to establish norms, a battery of neuropsychological
tests was administered, in either English or Spanish, to
995 normal elders with a wide range of educational attainment,
residing in the community of Washington Heights–Inwood
in northern Manhattan. Results indicate that age, education,
and language all influence test performance and should
be considered when evaluating neuropsychological measures.
(JINS, 1998, 4, 311–318.)