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Introduction: Variation in image ordering exists across Alberta emergency departments (EDs). Evidence-based, pocket-sized knowledge dissemination tools were developed for two conditions (acute asthma [AA] and benign headache [BHA]) for which imaging (chest x-ray [CXR] and computed tomography [CT], respectively) has limited utility. This study explored tool acceptability among ED patients and emergency physicians (EPs). Methods: Tool feedback was provided by EPs, via online survey, and adult patients with AA and BHA via in-person survey. EPs qualitative interviews further explored communication tools. Preliminary descriptive analyses of survey responses and content analysis of interview data were conducted. Results: Overall, 55 EPs (55/192; 29%) and 38 consecutive patients participated in the AA study; 73 EPs (73/192; 38%) and 160 patients participated in the BHA study. In both studies, approximately 50% of EPs felt comfortable using the tool; however, they suggested including radiation risk details and imaging indications and removing references to imaging variation and health system cost. In the BHA study, EPs opposed the four Choosing Wisely® campaign questions fearing they would increase imaging expectations. In both conditions, most patients ( >90%) understood the content and 68% felt the information applied to them. Less than half (AA:45%; BHA: 38%) agreed that they now knew more about when a patient should have imaging workup done. Following tool review, 71% of AA and 50% of BHA patients stated they would discuss their imaging needs with their ED care provider today or during a future presentation. Both patient groups suggested including: additional imaging details (i.e., indications, risk, clinical utility), removing imaging overuse references, and including instructions that encourage patients to ask their EP questions. EP interviews (n = 12) identified preferences for personalized and interactive tools. Tensions were perceived around ED time pressure as well as remuneration schemes that fail to prioritize patient conversation. Tool centralization, easy access, and connection with outpatient support were also key themes. Conclusion: Both patients and EPs provided valuable information on how to improve ED knowledge dissemination tools, using two chronic conditions to demonstrate how these changes would improve tool utility. Implementing these recommendations, and considering preferences of EPs and patients, may improve future tool uptake and impact.
Salmonella enterica serovar Wangata (S. Wangata) is an important cause of endemic salmonellosis in Australia, with human infections occurring from undefined sources. This investigation sought to examine possible environmental and zoonotic sources for human infections with S. Wangata in north-eastern New South Wales (NSW), Australia. The investigation adopted a One Health approach and was comprised of three complimentary components: a case–control study examining human risk factors; environmental and animal sampling; and genomic analysis of human, animal and environmental isolates. Forty-eight human S. Wangata cases were interviewed during a 6-month period from November 2016 to April 2017, together with 55 Salmonella Typhimurium (S. Typhimurium) controls and 130 neighbourhood controls. Indirect contact with bats/flying foxes (S. Typhimurium controls (adjusted odds ratio (aOR) 2.63, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.06–6.48)) (neighbourhood controls (aOR 8.33, 95% CI 2.58–26.83)), wild frogs (aOR 3.65, 95% CI 1.32–10.07) and wild birds (aOR 6.93, 95% CI 2.29–21.00) were statistically associated with illness in multivariable analyses. S. Wangata was detected in dog faeces, wildlife scats and a compost specimen collected from the outdoor environments of cases’ residences. In addition, S. Wangata was detected in the faeces of wild birds and sea turtles in the investigation area. Genomic analysis revealed that S. Wangata isolates were relatively clonal. Our findings suggest that S. Wangata is present in the environment and may have a reservoir in wildlife populations in north-eastern NSW. Further investigation is required to better understand the occurrence of Salmonella in wildlife groups and to identify possible transmission pathways for human infections.
Structural modifications occurring in corroded potassium silicate glasses were studied using x-ray amorphous scattering techniques. Pair function distribution curves are compared and the differential method is used to follow the structural changes. The structure appears to approach that of vitreous silica after long leaching times.
Cross-sectional and longitudinal research has shown that race-related stress is associated with increased depressive symptoms among racial/ethnic minorities. Rumination has long been considered a maladaptive self-regulatory response to race-related stress, and growing evidence suggests that it may be an important link in the relation between race-related stress and depression. More adaptive forms of self-regulation, such as active coping, may counteract the negative impact of rumination. We examined the influence of rumination on the relation between race-related stress and depressive symptoms in a sample (N = 69) of young adult (mean age = 20 ± 1.5 years) African American women. We also considered the possible moderating effects of John Henryism, a form of persistent and determined goal striving, and vagally mediated heart rate variability, a purported biomarker of coping. Anticipatory race-related stress was indirectly associated with depressive symptoms through rumination: estimate = 0.07, 95% confidence interval [0.01, 0.16]. Both John Henryism and vagally mediated heart rate variability moderated the relationship between race-related stress and rumination; however, only John Henryism reliably influenced the indirect association between race-related stress and depression through rumination. We discuss these findings in the context of growing research examining the interplay between cultural and biological factors in the risk for poorer mental health.
The objective of this study was to investigate the impact of the most commonly cited factors that may have influenced infants’ gut microbiota profiles at one year of age: mode of delivery, breastfeeding duration and antibiotic exposure. Barcoded V3/V4 amplicons of bacterial 16S-rRNA gene were prepared from the stool samples of 52 healthy 1-year-old Australian children and sequenced using the Illumina MiSeq platform. Following the quality checks, the data were processed using the Quantitative Insights Into Microbial Ecology pipeline and analysed using the Calypso package for microbiome data analysis. The stool microbiota profiles of children still breastfed were significantly different from that of children weaned earlier (P<0.05), independent of the age of solid food introduction. Among children still breastfed, Veillonella spp. abundance was higher. Children no longer breastfed possessed a more ‘mature’ microbiota, with notable increases of Firmicutes. The microbiota profiles of the children could not be differentiated by delivery mode or antibiotic exposure. Further analysis based on children’s feeding patterns found children who were breastfed alongside solid food had significantly different microbiota profiles compared to that of children who were receiving both breastmilk and formula milk alongside solid food. This study provided evidence that breastfeeding continues to influence gut microbial community even at late infancy when these children are also consuming table foods. At this age, any impacts from mode of delivery or antibiotic exposure did not appear to be discernible imprints on the microbial community profiles of these healthy children.
Introduction: The effectiveness of intravenous alteplase is highly time dependent, and very short door-to-needle times (DNT) of 30 minutes or less have been reported in single centre hospitals, but never in an entire population. QuICR (Quality Improvement and Clinical Research) Alberta Stroke Program aimed to reduce DNT to a median of 30 minutes across the Canadian province of Alberta. Methods: We used the Improvement Collaborative Methodology from early 2015 to September 2016 with participation from all 17 Stroke Centres in Alberta. This methodology included 4 face-to-face workshops, site visits, webinars, data collection, data feedback, intensive process mapping, and process improvements. We compared data in the pre-intervention period from 2009-2014 (collected during the Alberta Provincial Stroke Strategy) to data in the post-intervention period from March 2016-February 2017 (collected during the QuICR DTN Collaborative). Data from January 2015-February 2016 were excluded, as improvements were being implemented during this time. Results: There were a total of 2,322 treated cases in the pre- and post-intervention periods. The results show that the median DNT dropped from 68 minutes (n=1846) in the pre-intervention period to 36 minutes (n=476) in the post-intervention period (p<0.001). There were reductions in DNT across all hospital types: median DNT dropped from 63 to 32 minutes in Urban Tertiary Centres (p<0.001), from 73 to 32 minutes in Community with 24/7 neurology (p<0.001), from 85 to 62 minutes in Community with limited/no neurology (p<0.001), and from 74 to 52.5 minutes in rural centres (p<0.001). Conclusion: There were 21.5 to 41 minute reductions in median DNT across all hospital types including smaller rural and community hospitals. A targeted multi-site improvement collaborative can be an effective intervention to reduce DNT across an entire population.
Rates of genetic improvement in dairy cattle breeding programmes have increased substantially in the last decade, not only in Europe where there has been substantial immigration of North American stock. More accurate statistical evaluation procedures, including the use of best linear unbiased prediction (BLUP) with the animal model, have been introduced; higher selection intensities have been achieved, particularly on production traits, through better organized and focused schemes; and developments in multiple ovulation and embryo transfer (MOET) have been both a stimulus and to some extent a cause. Continued rapid improvement can be expected as research and development enables more accurate and timely use to be made of recording data, because there is evidence that heritability values for milk production are rising, perhaps because of better cow management, and as competition among breeders internationally increases. There are a number of consequent challenges to geneticists and breeders. Attention will have to be given to maintaining the fitness of very high producing animals by recording health, fertility, longevity and parlour traits, and using the results of research to give them appropriate weight in selection decisions. Developments in molecular methods and in reproductive technologies present new opportunities, but are unlikely to do more for some time than complement progress from conventional selection on the important production traits.
In this brief report, computed tomography perfusion (CTP) thresholds predicting follow-up infarction in patients presenting <3 hours from stroke onset and achieving ultra-early reperfusion (<45 minutes from CTP) are reported. CTP thresholds that predict follow-up infarction vary based on time to reperfusion: Tmax >20 to 23 seconds and cerebral blood flow <5 to 7 ml/min−1/(100 g)−1 or relative cerebral blood flow <0.14 to 0.20 optimally predicted the final infarct. These thresholds are stricter than published thresholds.
The Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) is caused by a novel coronavirus discovered in 2012. Since then, 1806 cases, including 564 deaths, have been reported by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) and affected countries as of 1 June 2016. Previous literature attributed increases in MERS-CoV transmission to camel breeding season as camels are likely the reservoir for the virus. However, this literature review and subsequent analysis indicate a lack of seasonality. A retrospective, epidemiological cluster analysis was conducted to investigate increases in MERS-CoV transmission and reports of household and nosocomial clusters. Cases were verified and associations between cases were substantiated through an extensive literature review and the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch's Tiered Source Classification System. A total of 51 clusters were identified, primarily nosocomial (80·4%) and most occurred in KSA (45·1%). Clusters corresponded temporally with the majority of periods of greatest incidence, suggesting a strong correlation between nosocomial transmission and notable increases in cases.
Due to their extremely small luminosity compared to the stars they orbit, planets outside our own Solar System are extraordinarily difficult to detect directly in optical light. Careful photometric monitoring of distant stars, however, can reveal the presence of exoplanets via the microlensing or eclipsing effects they induce. The international PLANET collaboration is performing such monitoring using a cadre of semi-dedicated telescopes around the world. Their results constrain the number of gas giants orbiting 1–7 AU from the most typical stars in the Galaxy. Upgrades in the program are opening regions of “exoplanet discovery space” – toward smaller masses and larger orbital radii – that are inaccessible to the Doppler velocity technique.
Time series spectra of the F5IV star Procyon (α CMi) were obtained at the Kitt Peak National Observatory during a 35-night observing run in January-February 1997. The observations were obtained as part of an international collaboration to detect and study acoustic p-mode oscillations in solar-type stars. Spectra covered the wavelength range from 4000 to 5300 Å, with a resolving power of approximately 3500 (1.3 Å resolution). The sampling rate was one observation per minute, and the typical S/N ratio per pixel after averaging along columns is in excess of 1000. We obtained 12,888 spectra. A sample spectrum is shown in Figure 1
This paper briefly describes the principle of operation and science goals of the AMANDA high energy neutrino telescope located at the South Pole, Antarctica. Results from an earlier phase of the telescope, called AMANDA-BIO, demonstrate both reliable operation and the broad astrophysical reach of this device, which includes searches for a variety of sources of ultrahigh energy neutrinos: generic point sources, Gamma-Ray Bursts and diffuse sources. The predicted sensitivity and angular resolution of the telescope were confirmed by studies of atmospheric muon and neutrino backgrounds. We also report on the status of the analysis from AMANDA-II, a larger version with far greater capabilities. At this stage of analysis, details of the ice properties and other systematic uncertainties of the AMANDA-II telescope are under study, but we have made progress toward critical science objectives. In particular, we present the first preliminary flux limits from AMANDA-II on the search for continuous emission from astrophysical point sources, and report on the search for correlated neutrino emission from Gamma Ray Bursts detected by BATSE before decommissioning in May 2000. During the next two years, we expect to exploit the full potential of AMANDA-II with the installation of a new data acquisition system that records full waveforms from the in-ice optical sensors.
We present an analysis of wide-field, far-ultraviolet images of the LMC and SMC obtained by the Ultraviolet Imaging Telescope. The photometric catalog of over 37,000 stars allows us to make large-scale, statistical studies of massive star formation in OB associations and in the field population. Our results show that: (1) the most probable slope for the initial mass function (IMF) of field stars is Γ = −1.80, slightly steeper than the Salpeter slope; and (2) there doesn't seem to be a single, unique IMF slope for stars in OB associations, with a range of values from Γ = −1.0 to −2.0. We also analyze the stellar vs. diffuse UV flux, and the population of OB star candidates in the field.
We have used the MX multifiber spectrometer on the Steward 2.3m measuring redshifts of up to 25 galaxies in each of about 90 Abell cluster fields with richness class R ≥ 1 and mag10 ≤ 16.8 (estimated z ≤ 0.12) and no more than one previously-measured redshift. This work has resulted in a deeper, more complete sample for two-point correlation and other studies of large-scale structure. To date, we have collected such data for 110 clusters (a few not in our sample). For most, we have seven or more cluster members with redshifts, enough to add significantly to the available sample of cluster velocity dispersions for other studies of cluster properties.
This paper is an interim report of our inferences about the hydrostatic structure of the Sun, following the first report of the GONG team in Science (Gough et al., 1996). That work confirms that the spherically averaged structure of the Sun is more or less in agreement with current standard solar models. However, there remain some significant deviations which we regard as important clues to the existence of dynamical phenomena which are not taken into account in standard solar modelling.
More than 250 machine-readable catalogs of stars and extended celestial objects are now available at the NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) as the result of over a decade of catalog acquisition , verification and documentation. Retrieval programs are described which permit the user to obtain from a remote terminal bibliographical listings for stars; to find all celestial objects from a given list that are within a defined angular separation from each object in another list; to plot celestial objects on overlays for sky survey plate areas; and to search selected catalogs for objects by criteria of position , identification number, magnitude or spectral type.