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Higher consumption of ‘ultra-processed’ (UP) foods has been linked to adverse health outcomes. The present paper aims to characterise percentage energy from UP foods by participant socio-economic status (SES), diet quality, self-reported food expenditure and energy-adjusted diet cost. Participants in the population-based Seattle Obesity Study III (n 755) conducted in WA in 2016–2017 completed socio-demographic and food expenditure surveys and the FFQ. Education and residential property values were measures of SES. Retail prices of FFQ component foods (n 378) were used to estimate individual-level diet cost. Healthy Eating Index (HEI-2015) and Nutrient Rich Food Index 9.3 (NRF9.3) were measures of diet quality. UP foods were identified following NOVA classification. Multivariable linear regressions were used to test associations between UP foods energy, socio-demographics, two estimates of food spending and diet quality measures. Higher percentage energy from UP foods was associated with higher energy density, lower HEI-2015 and NRF9.3 scores. The bottom decile of diet cost ($216·4/month) was associated with 67·5 % energy from UP foods; the top decile ($369·9/month) was associated with only 48·7 % energy from UP foods. Percentage energy from UP foods was inversely linked to lower food expenditures and diet cost. In multivariate analysis, percentage energy from UP foods was predicted by lower food expenditures, diet cost and education, adjusting for covariates. Percentage energy from UP foods was linked to lower food spending and lower SES. Efforts to reduce UP foods consumption, an increasingly common policy measure, need to take affordability, food expenditures and diet costs into account.
Post-diagnostic psychosocial interventions could play an important role in supporting people with mild dementia remain independent. The Promoting Independence in Dementia (PRIDE) intervention was developed to address this.
The mixed methods non-randomized, pre-post feasibility study occurred across England. Facilitators were recruited from the voluntary sector and memory services. Participants and their supporters took part in the three-session intervention. Outcome measures were collected at baseline and follow-up. To evaluate acceptability, focus groups and interviews were conducted with a subsample of participants and facilitators.
Contextual challenges to delivery including national research governance changes, affected recruitment of study sites. Thirty-four dyads consented, with 14 facilitators providing the intervention. Dyads took part in at least two sessions (79%), and 73% in all three. Outcome measures were completed by 79% without difficulty, with minimal missing data. No significant changes were found on pre and post assessments. Post hoc analysis found moderate effect size improvements for self-management (SMAS instrument) in people with dementia (d = 0.41) and quality of life (EQ5D measure) in carers (d = 0.40). Qualitative data indicated that dyads found PRIDE acceptable, as did intervention facilitators.
The three-session intervention was well accepted by participant-dyads and intervention facilitators. A randomized controlled trial of PRIDE would need to carefully consider recruitment potential across geographically varied settings and site stratification according to knowledge of contextual factors, such as the diversity of post-diagnostic services across the country. Letting sites themselves be responsible for identifying suitable intervention facilitators was successful. The self-report measures showed potential to be included in the main trial.
Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is an effective and safe therapy for major depressive disorder (MDD). This study assessed quality of life (QOL) and functional status outcomes for depressed patients after an acute course of TMS.
Forty-two, U.S.-based, clinical TMS practice sites treated 307 outpatients with a primary diagnosis of MDD and persistent symptoms despite prior adequate antidepressant pharmacotherapy. Treatment parameters were based on individual clinical considerations and followed the labeled procedures for use of the approved TMS device. Patient self-reported QOL outcomes included change in the Medical Outcomes Study 36-Item Short-Form Health Survey (SF-36) and the EuroQol 5-Dimensions (EQ-5D) ratings from baseline to end of the acute treatment phase.
Statistically significant improvement in functional status on a broad range of mental health and physical health domains was observed on the SF-36 following acute TMS treatment. Similarly, statistically significant improvement in patient-reported QOL was observed on all domains of the EQ-5D and on the General Health Perception and Health Index scores. Improvement on these measures was observed across the entire range of baseline depression symptom severity.
These data confirm that TMS is effective in the acute treatment of MDD in routine clinical practice settings. This symptom benefit is accompanied by statistically and clinically meaningful improvements in patient-reported QOL and functional status outcomes.
To assess the inter-method reliability of the Ovarian Cancer in Alberta (OVAL) survey developed to estimate adult vitamin D exposure from sun and diet for every tenth year, against the longer Geraldton Skin Cancer Prevention Survey (the assumed ‘gold standard’). We also estimated total vitamin D exposure using the OVAL survey.
A randomized crossover design to assess the inter-method reliability of sun exposure (OVAL v. Geraldton survey), using intra-class correlation and estimated total vitamin D exposure from sun and diet.
Calgary, Alberta, Canada.
Randomly selected women (n 90) aged 40–79 years.
The average lifetime sun exposure of 13 913 h (average 411 h/year) from the Geraldton survey was not significantly different from the 13 034 h (average 385 h/year) from the OVAL survey for periods with sufficient UV radiation to stimulate vitamin D production. The intra-class correlation coefficient for average lifetime sun exposure was 0·77 (95 % CI 0·69, 0·86); the annual average was 0·60 (95 % CI 0·47, 0·74). Estimated vitamin D from diet and supplements increased with age.
Our OVAL survey reliably estimated adult sun exposure relative to the Geraldton survey, suggesting that assessing sun exposure every tenth year is a reliable and efficient method for estimating sun contributions to lifetime vitamin D exposure.
Purpose: The aim of this study was to compare associations between generic versus disease-specific functional health status assessments and patient and clinical characteristics for patients with severe congenital heart disease. Methods: This was a cross-sectional observational study involving 325 single ventricle patients, aged 10–18 years, after Fontan procedure. Enrolled patients underwent a medical history review, laboratory testing, and assessment of the functional health status by completion of the generic Child Report Child Health Questionnaire and the disease-specific Congenital Heart Adolescent and Teenage questionnaire. Correlated conceptually equivalent domains from both questionnaires were identified and their associations with patient and clinical variables were compared. Results: From the generic assessment, patients perceived marginally lower physical functioning (p = 0.05) but greater freedom from bodily pain compared with a normal population (p < 0.001). The equivalent physical functioning/limitations domain of the generic instrument, compared with the disease-specific instrument, had similar associations (higher multi-variable model R2) with medical history variables (R2 = 0.14 versus R2 = 0.12, respectively) and stronger associations with exercise testing variables (R2 = 0.22 versus R2 = 0.06). Similarly, the corresponding freedom from bodily pain/symptoms domains from both questionnaires showed a greater association for the generic instrument with medical history variables (R2 = 0.15 versus R2 = 0.09, respectively) and non-cardiac conditions (R2 = 0.13 versus R2 = 0.06). The associations of each questionnaire with echocardiographic results, cardiac magnetic resonance imaging results, and serum brain natriuretic peptide levels were uniformly weak (R2 range <0.01 to 0.04). Conclusions: Assessment of the physical functional health status using generic and disease-specific instruments yields few differences with regard to associations between conceptually similar domains and patient and clinical characteristics for adolescents after Fontan procedure.
Recent Genome-Wide Association Studies (GWAS) have identified four low-penetrance ovarian cancer susceptibility loci. We hypothesized that further moderate- or low-penetrance variants exist among the subset of single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) not well tagged by the genotyping arrays used in the previous studies, which would account for some of the remaining risk. We therefore conducted a time- and cost-effective stage 1 GWAS on 342 invasive serous cases and 643 controls genotyped on pooled DNA using the high-density Illumina 1M-Duo array. We followed up 20 of the most significantly associated SNPs, which are not well tagged by the lower density arrays used by the published GWAS, and genotyping them on individual DNA. Most of the top 20 SNPs were clearly validated by individually genotyping the samples used in the pools. However, none of the 20 SNPs replicated when tested for association in a much larger stage 2 set of 4,651 cases and 6,966 controls from the Ovarian Cancer Association Consortium. Given that most of the top 20 SNPs from pooling were validated in the same samples by individual genotyping, the lack of replication is likely to be due to the relatively small sample size in our stage 1 GWAS rather than due to problems with the pooling approach. We conclude that there are unlikely to be any moderate or large effects on ovarian cancer risk untagged by less dense arrays. However, our study lacked power to make clear statements on the existence of hitherto untagged small-effect variants.
Intake of nutrients may influence the risk of endometrial cancer (EC). We aimed to estimate the association of intake of individual nutrients from food and from food plus supplements with EC occurrence.
A population-based case–control study conducted in Canada (2002–2006).
Nutrient intakes from food and supplements were assessed using an FFQ. Logistic regression was used to estimate EC risk within quartile levels of nutrient intakes.
Incident EC cases (n 506) were identified from the Alberta Cancer Registry, and population controls were frequency- and age-matched to cases (n 981).
There existed little evidence of an association with EC for the majority of macronutrients and micronutrients examined. We observed a statistically significant increased risk associated with the highest, compared with the lowest, quartile of intake of dietary cholesterol (multivariable-adjusted OR = 1·51, 95 % CI 1·08, 2·11; P for trend = 0·02). Age-adjusted risk at the highest level of intake was significantly reduced for Ca from food sources (OR = 0·73, 95 % CI 0·54, 0·99) but was attenuated in the multivariable model (OR = 0·82, 95 % CI 0·59, 1·13). When intake from supplements was included in Ca intake, risk was significantly reduced by 28 % with higher Ca (multivariable-adjusted OR = 0·72, 95 % CI 0·51, 0·99, P for trend = 0·04). We also observed unexpected increased risks at limited levels of intakes of dietary soluble fibre, vitamin C, thiamin, vitamin B6 and lutein/zeaxanthin, with no evidence for linear trend.
The results of our study suggest a positive association between dietary cholesterol and EC risk and an inverse association with Ca intake from food sources and from food plus supplements.
To describe the rates of several key outcomes and healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) among hospitals that participated in the Duke Infection Control Outreach Network (DICON).
Design and Setting.
Prospective, observational cohort study of patients admitted to 24 community hospitals from 2003 through 2009.
The following data were collected and analyzed: incidence of central line-associated bloodstream infections (CLABSIs), ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP), catheter-associated urinary tract infections (CAUTIs), and HAIs caused by methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA); employee exposures to bloodborne pathogens (EBBPs); physician EBBPs; patient-days; central line-days; ventilator-days; and urinary catheter-days. Poisson regression was used to determine whether incidence rates of these HAIs and exposures changed during the first 5 and 7 years of participation in DICON; nonrandom clustering of each outcome was controlled for. Cost saved and lives saved were calculated on the basis of published estimates.
In total, we analyzed 6.5 million patient-days, 4,783 EBPPs, 2,948 HAIs due to MRSA, and 2,076 device-related infections. Rates of employee EBBPs, HAIs due to MRSA, and device-related infections decreased significantly during the first 5 years of participation in DICON (P < .05 for all models; average decrease was approximately 50%); in contrast, physician EBBPs remained unchanged. In aggregate, 210 CLABSIs, 312 cases of VAP, 332 CAUTIs, 1,042 HAIs due to MRSA, and 1,016 employee EBBPs were prevented. Each hospital saved approximately $100,000 per year of participation, and collectively the hospitals may have prevented 52-105 deaths from CLABSI or VAP. The 7-year analysis demonstrated that these trends continued with further participation.
Hospitals with long-term participation in an infection control network decreased rates of significant HAIs by approximately 50%, decreased costs, and saved lives.
To determine (1) the annual costs of implementing and maintaining tuberculin skin test (TST) programs at participating study sites, (2) the cost of the TST program per healthcare worker (HCW), and (3) the outcomes of the TST programs, including the proportion of HCWs with a documented TST conversion and the proportion who accepted and completed treatment for latent TB infection, before and after the implementation of staffTRAK-TB software (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA).
Cost analysis in which costs for salaries, training, supplies, radiography, and data analysis were collected for two 12-month periods (before and after the implementation of staffTRAK-TB).
Four hospitals (two university and two city) and two health departments (one small county and one big city).
The annual cost of implementing and maintaining a TST program ranged from $66,564 to $332,728 for hospitals and $92,886 to $291,248 for health departments. The cost of the TST program per HCW ranged from $41 to $362 for hospitals and $176 to $264 for health departments.
Costs associated with implementing and maintaining a TST program varied widely among the participating study sites, both before and after the implementation of staffTRAK-TB. Compliance with the TB infection control guidelines of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention may require a substantial investment in personnel time, effort, and commitment.
Donepezil has been shown to improve aspects of cognitive functioning in persons with Alzheimer's disease (AD), but its impact on instrumental activities of daily living has received little attention. In a within-subject design, 24 community-dwelling persons with AD were treated with open-label donepezil over a 12-month period. To assess functional abilities, a brief, objective measure of instrumental activities of daily living skills was used (Texas Functional Living Scale; TFLS). Global cognitive abilities were assessed with the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE). Changes in TFLS and MMSE scores were much the same. Improvements on the TFLS and MMSE were seen over a 3-month period. At 12 months, both TFLS and MMSE scores declined slightly below baseline. These results support an effect of donepezil on cognitive measures and day-to-day function and also suggest that the MMSE reflects well the actual functional ability of persons with moderate AD.
The beginning of the new millennium seems a good time to reflect upon issues
in gerontology as many Western countries are experiencing population
ageing and the challenges it entails. In comparison to Europe's 14 per cent
average (Population Reference Bureau 2000), Canada is a relatively young
country with only about 12 per cent of the population over age 65 (Statistics
Canada 1999). Nonetheless, population ageing is a driving force in Canadian
gerontology. In this paper we discuss current thinking in gerontology in
Canada and how it reflects our approaches to research and development of
public policy. We begin with an overview of national policy and research
perspectives. We provide examples of research programmes addressing key
issues: population ageing and the welfare state, rethinking independence, and
quality of life issues from the Canadian perspective. Finally, we discuss the
values that provide the context for the development of approaches to funding
which affect the scope and direction of our research. Information sources
include national policy documents, recent publications by Canadian
gerontologists, and articles from the Canadian Journal on Aging 1998–2000.