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Studies have shown that Text2Quit and other mobile cessation programs increase quit rates in adult smokers, but the mechanism of effects and user experiences are not well understood.
This study reports on participants' experiences with the program and explores aspects of the program that they liked and disliked.
Self-reported experiences of the program were collected through a follow-up survey conducted 1 month after enrollment (n = 185). Participant responses to open-ended items were dual coded by independent coders.
Overall participants agreed that they liked the program (4.2/5), that the program was helpful (4.1/5) and that they would recommend the program to a friend (4.3/5). Top reasons for liking the program included that it served as a constant reminder of quitting (17.8%), the content (16.7%), the encouragement provided (13.3%), and the on-demand tools (12.2%). Top reasons for disliking the program were message frequency (20.5%), content (7.0%), and the lack of personal interaction (7.0%).
The constancy of messaging was both liked as a reminder and disliked as an annoyance. Future programs might be improved by pre-testing and customizing the content based on user preferences, and by adding in human interactions, while keeping a supportive tone and offering on-demand tools.
This study aimed to evaluate the effect of neck dissection on survival and complication rates in patients with no clinical or radiological evidence of cervical nodal disease (N0) undergoing salvage laryngectomy.
A retrospective study was conducted of patients with squamous cell carcinoma of the larynx following primary radiotherapy that required salvage laryngectomy. Disease-free and overall survival rates were compared over three years using Kaplan–Meier analysis. Pharyngocutaneous fistula rate, hospitalisation length and the requirement for further surgical intervention were also compared across cohorts.
Twenty-three cases met the inclusion criteria (17 neck dissections, 6 undissected). No significant differences in survival outcomes were identified. One patient who underwent neck dissection for advanced, recurrent transglottic squamous cell carcinoma showed evidence of occult lymph node metastases. Fistula rates did not differ significantly between dissected and non-dissected groups; however, two patients required surgical repair of post-operative pharyngocutaneous fistula following neck dissection.
In this study, elective neck dissection did not appear to alter survival outcomes or complication rates during salvage laryngectomy. Given the small but significant risk of occult neck metastases, its true value remains unclear.
Cognitive impairment, dysphagia, communication issues, pain, spasticity, bladder dysfunction, sexual dysfunction and bowel incontinence are but a few problems frequently reported by individuals living with long-term neurological conditions. The management of long-term neurological conditions requires co-ordinated inputs from multiple disciplines, and this practical handbook facilitates this by combining physical, cognitive and psychological strategies to patient management. Featuring contributions from leading experts in neurology, health services and clinical rehabilitation, this book is a comprehensive overview of common neurological impairments and solutions. It adopts an evidence-based approach to both pharmacological and non-pharmacological options for alleviating neurological symptoms. An easy-to-refer to guide, bridging multiple disciplines, aided by current research, to provide effective, and practical management for all aspects and issues arising in the rehabilitation phases of the neurological patient. This unique pocketbook is intended for practitioners at all levels, and is ideally suited as a quick guide during ward rounds, out-patient clinics and therapy sessions.
The role of panendoscopy in the modern investigation of head and neck cancer is changing with the development of improved radiological techniques, in-office biopsy capabilities and the low rate of synchronous primary tumours. This study aimed to review the indications for panendoscopy in the investigation of newly diagnosed head and neck cancer.
A retrospective review was conducted of 186 patients with newly diagnosed head and neck cancer, between January 2014 and December 2015, at two tertiary centres.
Obtaining a tissue diagnosis was the most common indication for panendoscopy (65 per cent), followed by surgical planning including transoral robotic surgery suitability assessment (22.6 per cent), and the investigation of carcinoma of an unknown primary (11.3 per cent). Two synchronous primary tumours were identified, generating a yield of 1.1 per cent.
Panendoscopy remains integral in the assessment of transoral robotic surgery suitability. Refining indications for modern panendoscopy could reduce the need for this procedure in this cohort of patients.
Introduction: Online medical education resources are widely used in emergency medicine (EM), but strategies to assess quality remain elusive. We previously derived the Medical Education Translational Resources: Impact and Quality (METRIQ) 8 instrument to evaluate quality in medical education blog posts. Methods: As part of a subsequent validation study (The METRIQ Blog Study), a mixed-methods usability analysis was performed to obtain user feedback on the quality assessment instrument in order to improve its clarity and reliability. Participants in the METRIQ Study were first asked to rate five blog posts using the METRIQ-8 Score. They then evaluated the METRIQ-8 instruments ease of use and likelihood of being recommended to others using a 7-point Likert scale and free text comments. Participants were also asked to flag and comment on items within the score that they felt were unclear. Global usability ratings were summarized using median scores or percent rated unclear. We used ANOVA to test associations between ease of use and demographic factors. A thematic analysis was performed on the comments. Results: 309 EM medical students, residents, and attendings completed the survey. Global ratings were generally very favorable (median 2 [IQR 2-3], with 7 being the lowest score) for ease of use and likelihood of recommendation, and did not vary by participants country of origin, frequency of blog use, or learner level. Participants stated that the score was structured, systematic, and straightforward. They found it useful for junior learners and for guiding blog creation. Four questions in the score (questions 2, 4, 5, and 7) were identified by 10% of subjects to be unclear. Thematic analysis of comments identified suggested four main themes for improving the score: adding clearer definitions with marking rubrics; shortening the 7-point scale; adding items evaluating blog post presentation and utility; and, rephrasing the wording of certain questions for clarity. Conclusion: A mixed methods usability analysis of the METRIQ-8 instrument for assessing blog quality was globally well received by EM medical students, residents, and attendings. Qualitative analyses revealed multiple areas to improve the instruments clarity and usability. The METRIQ score is a promising instrument for evaluating the quality of blogs; further development and testing is needed to improve its utility.
The discovery of the first electromagnetic counterpart to a gravitational wave signal has generated follow-up observations by over 50 facilities world-wide, ushering in the new era of multi-messenger astronomy. In this paper, we present follow-up observations of the gravitational wave event GW170817 and its electromagnetic counterpart SSS17a/DLT17ck (IAU label AT2017gfo) by 14 Australian telescopes and partner observatories as part of Australian-based and Australian-led research programs. We report early- to late-time multi-wavelength observations, including optical imaging and spectroscopy, mid-infrared imaging, radio imaging, and searches for fast radio bursts. Our optical spectra reveal that the transient source emission cooled from approximately 6 400 K to 2 100 K over a 7-d period and produced no significant optical emission lines. The spectral profiles, cooling rate, and photometric light curves are consistent with the expected outburst and subsequent processes of a binary neutron star merger. Star formation in the host galaxy probably ceased at least a Gyr ago, although there is evidence for a galaxy merger. Binary pulsars with short (100 Myr) decay times are therefore unlikely progenitors, but pulsars like PSR B1534+12 with its 2.7 Gyr coalescence time could produce such a merger. The displacement (~2.2 kpc) of the binary star system from the centre of the main galaxy is not unusual for stars in the host galaxy or stars originating in the merging galaxy, and therefore any constraints on the kick velocity imparted to the progenitor are poor.
Introduction: Smokers with depressive and alcohol use disorders report more severe tobacco abstinence effects (e.g., tobacco withdrawal and craving, mood and sleep disturbance), but less is known about abstinence effects among smokers with subclinical features of these disorders.
Aims: The time-course and severity of acute abstinence effects were evaluated in smokers with and without subclinical depressive symptoms (DEP) and with and without subclinical alcohol consumption (ALC). Methods: Participants (N = 106) received smoking cessation counselling and were contingently compensated for biochemically-verified smoking abstinence. Abstinence effects were assessed pre-quit and daily for eight days post-quit.
Results/Findings: Seventy-four participants (70%) achieved eight-day continuous smoking abstinence. Generalised estimating equations revealed that time and DEP group significantly interacted to predict change in Wisconsin Smoking Withdrawal Scale (WSWS) Anxiety (Wald = 21.18, p < .01) and Questionnaire of Smoking Urges Relief from Negative Affect (Wald = 20.12, p < .01) subscale scores. Time and ALC group significantly interacted to predict change in Profile of Mood States (POMS) Fatigue subscale score (Wald = 19.78, p < .01). Compared to non-DEP smokers, DEP smokers reported higher mean post-quit scores on several measures of abstinence effects, including WSWS Sadness and POMS Total; however, pre-quit differences between DEP groups may have confounded post-quit differences.
Conclusions: Smokers with subclinical depressive symptoms endorsed high levels of abstinence effects, but it was unclear if these were related to the absence of tobacco. Smokers with subclinical alcohol consumption did not endorse high levels of abstinence effects but abstinence-related fatigue took longer to improve.
There is evidence that epigenetic changes occur early in breast carcinogenesis. We hypothesized that early-life exposures associated with breast cancer would be associated with epigenetic alterations in breast tumors. In particular, we examined DNA methylation patterns in breast tumors in association with several early-life exposures in a population-based case–control study. Promoter methylation of E-cadherin, p16 and RAR-β2 genes was assessed in archived tumor blocks from 803 cases with real-time methylation-specific PCR. Unconditional logistic regression was used for case–case comparisons of those with and without promoter methylation. We found no differences in the prevalence of DNA methylation of the individual genes by age at menarche, age at first live birth and weight at age 20. In case–case comparisons of premenopausal breast cancer, lower birth weight was associated with increased likelihood of E-cadherin promoter methylation (OR = 2.79, 95% CI, 1.15–6.82, for ⩽2.5 v. 2.6–2.9 kg); higher adult height with RAR-β2 methylation (OR = 3.34, 95% CI, 1.19–9.39, for ⩾1.65 v. <1.60 m); and not having been breastfed with p16 methylation (OR = 2.75, 95% CI, 1.14–6.62). Among postmenopausal breast cancers, birth order was associated with increased likelihood of p16 promoter methylation. Being other than first in the birth order was inversely associated with likelihood of ⩾1 of the three genes being methylated for premenopausal breast cancers, but positively associated with methylation in postmenopausal women. These results suggest that there may be alterations in methylation associated with early-life exposures that persist into adulthood and affect breast cancer risk.
Rotavirus is a common viral cause of severe diarrhoea. For the underlying cause of rotavirus seasonality, the meteorological factor has been suspected, whereas quantitative correlation between seasonality and meteorological factor has not been fully investigated. In this study, we investigated the correlation of temporal patterns of the isolation rate of rotavirus with meteorological condition (temperature, relative humidity, rainfall) in Kolkata, India. We used time-series analysis combined with spectral analysis and least squares method. A 1-year cycle explained underlying variations of rotavirus and meteorological data. The 1-year cycle for rotavirus data was correlated with an opposite phase to that for meteorological data. Relatively high temperature could be associated with a low value of isolation rate of rotavirus in the monsoon season. Quantifying a correlation of rotavirus infections with meteorological conditions might prove useful in predicting rotavirus epidemics and health services could plan accordingly.
Nonlinear optical effects are revealed when strong light fields interact with matter. It has been shown that nanomaterials exhibit properties which are very different from the bulk, and in many cases, the nonlinear optical (NLO) efficiency of nanomaterials is found to be higher in comparison. Recently there has been substantial interest in developing novel NLO media for various applications. Even though several organic as well as inorganic materials have been studied in this connection, only a limited number of NLO reports exist for oxide nanomaterials. Therefore, in this paper we present results of NLO measurements recently conducted in our laboratory in three different oxide nanosystems. It is found that oxide nanomaterials are generally robust, and exhibit good NLO efficiencies, which make them potential candidates for photonic and optoelectronic applications.
We examine the association of a venture capital (VC) firm’s reputation with the post-initial public offering (IPO) long-run performance of its portfolio firms. We find that VC reputation, measured by the past market share of VC-backed IPOs, has significant positive associations with long-run firm performance measures. While more reputable VCs initially select better-quality firms, more reputable VCs continue to be associated with superior long-run performance, even after controlling for VC selectivity. We find that more reputable VCs exhibit more active post-IPO involvement in the corporate governance of their portfolio firms, and this continued VC involvement positively influences post-IPO firm performance.
Faecal specimens of diarrhoea cases (n=2495, collected between November 2007 and October 2009) from Infectious Diseases and Beliaghata General (ID&BG) Hospital, Kolkata, India, were screened by RT–PCR using specific primers targeting region C of the capsid gene of noroviruses (NoVs) to determine the seasonal distribution and clinical characteristics of NoVs associated with diarrhoea. NoV infection was detected in 78 cases, mostly in children aged <2 years. In 22/78 positive cases, the virus was detected as the sole agent; others were as mixed infections with other enteric pathogens. Sequencing of NVGII strains showed clustering with GII.4 NoVs followed by GII.13 and GII.6 NoVs. Clinical characteristics of the diarrhoeic children and adults in Kolkata indicated that NoV infections were detected throughout the year and were associated with a mild degree of dehydration.
A multiplex polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was developed to detect the presence of the ail, yst, and virF genes of Yersinia enterocolitica simultaneously, quickly and accurately. The amplified fragment sizes were 356 base-pairs (bp) for the ail gene, 134 bp for the yst gene, and 231 bp for the virF gene. The specificity of the amplified products was confirmed by hybridization with digoxigenin-labelled oligonucleotide probes. Amplification was successful whether the template was derived from a single colony of bacteria, aliquots of boiled bacterial suspensions, from DNA extracted from pure or mixed cultures or from stool specimens. Amplification of the virF gene was also achieved from strains of Y. pseudotuberculosis carrying the 70 kb plasmid but not with preparations from other related Yersinia species or from other members of the family Enterobacteriaceae. The detection limit we established was 5–10 colony forming units per millilitre (cfu/ml) and 1·0 pg of DNA.
We report an atypical case of ossicular necrosis affecting the incus, in the absence of any history of chronic serous otitis media. We also discuss the current theories of incus necrosis.
A male patient presented with a history of right unilateral hearing loss and tinnitus. Audiometry confirmed right conductive deafness; tympanometry was normal bilaterally. He underwent a right exploratory tympanotomy, which revealed atypical erosion of the proximal long process of the incus. Middle-ear examination was otherwise normal, with a mobile stapes footplate. The redundant long process of the incus was excised and a partial ossicular replacement prosthesis was inserted, resulting in improved hearing.
Ossicular pathologies most commonly affect the incus. The commonest defect is an absent lenticular and distal long process of the incus, which is most commonly associated with chronic otitis media. This is the first reported case of ossicular necrosis, particularly of the proximal long process of the incus, in the absence of chronic middle-ear pathology.
Direct numerical simulations have been performed to study the dynamics of isolated turbulent spots in compressible isothermal-wall boundary layers. Results of a bypass transition scenario at Mach 2, 4 and 6 are presented. At all Mach numbers the evolved spots have a leading-edge overhang, followed by a turbulent core and a calmed region at the rear interface. The spots have an upstream-pointing arrowhead shape when visualized by near-wall slices, but a downstream-pointing arrowhead in slices away from the wall. The lateral spreading of the spot decreases substantially with the Mach number, consistent with a growth mechanism based on the instability of lateral shear layers. Evidence for a supersonic (Mack) mode substructure is found in the Mach 6 case, where coherent spanwise structures are observed under the spot overhang region.