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Overweight and obesity may increase risk of disease progression in men with prostate cancer, but there have been few studies of weight loss interventions in this patient group. Based on existing literature and patient preferences we designed a self-help diet and physical activity intervention with telephone-based dietitian support. Men treated for prostate cancer who were overweight or obese were randomised to intervention or wait-list mini-intervention groups. The intervention group had an initial group meeting, a supporting letter from their urological consultant, three telephone dietitian consultations at 4-week intervals, a pedometer and access to web-based diet and physical activity resources. At 12 weeks, men in both groups were given digital scales for providing follow-up weight measurements, and the wait-list group received a mini-intervention of the supporting letter, a pedometer and access to the web-based resources. Sixty-two men were randomised; fifty-four completed baseline and 12-week measurements, and fifty-one and twenty-seven provided measurements at 6 and 12 months, respectively. In a repeated measures model, mean (95 % CI) difference in weight change between groups (wait-list mini-intervention minus intervention) at 12 weeks was −2·13 (−3·44, −0·82) kg (P = 0·002). At 12 months the corresponding value was −2·43 (−4·50, −0·37) kg (P = 0·022). Mean (95 % CI) difference in global QoL score change between groups at 12 weeks was 12·3 (4·93, 19·7) (P = 0·002); at 12 months there were no significant differences between groups. Results suggest the potential of self-help diet and physical activity intervention with trained support for modest but sustained weight loss in this patient group.
Background: Buprenorphine/naloxone (bup/nal) is a partial opioid agonist/antagonist and recommended first line treatment for opioid use disorder (OUD). Emergency departments (EDs) are a key point of contact with the healthcare system for patients living with OUD. Aim Statement: We implemented a multi-disciplinary quality improvement project to screen patients for OUD, initiate bup/nal for eligible individuals, and provide rapid next business day walk-in referrals to addiction clinics in the community. Measures & Design: From May to September 2018, our team worked with three ED sites and three addiction clinics to pilot the program. Implementation involved alignment with regulatory requirements, physician education, coordination with pharmacy to ensure in-ED medication access, and nurse education. The project is supported by a full-time project manager, data analyst, operations leaders, physician champions, provincial pharmacy, and the Emergency Strategic Clinical Network leadership team. For our pilot, our evaluation objective was to determine the degree to which our initiation and referral pathway was being utilized. We used administrative data to track the number of patients given bup/nal in ED, their demographics and whether they continued to fill bup/nal prescriptions 30 days after their ED visit. Addiction clinics reported both the number of patients referred to them and the number of patients attending their referral. Evaluation/Results: Administrative data shows 568 opioid-related visits to ED pilot sites during the pilot phase. Bup/nal was given to 60 unique patients in the ED during 66 unique visits. There were 32 (53%) male patients and 28 (47%) female patients. Median patient age was 34 (range: 21 to 79). ED visits where bup/nal was given had a median length of stay of 6 hours 57 minutes (IQR: 6 hours 20 minutes) and Canadian Triage Acuity Scores as follows: Level 1 – 1 (2%), Level 2 – 21 (32%), Level 3 – 32 (48%), Level 4 – 11 (17%), Level 5 – 1 (2%). 51 (77%) of these visits led to discharge. 24 (47%) discharged patients given bup/nal in ED continued to fill bup/nal prescriptions 30 days after their index ED visit. EDs also referred 37 patients with OUD to the 3 community clinics, and 16 of those individuals (43%) attended their first follow-up appointment. Discussion/Impact: Our pilot project demonstrates that with dedicated resources and broad institutional support, ED patients with OUD can be appropriately initiated on bup/nal and referred to community care.
Introduction: Canadian undergraduate medical Emergency Medicine (EM) rotations are often completed at either tertiary care centres or regional community hospitals. While the latter offer students exposure to different practice settings and population needs, many students perceive that teaching at tertiary care EM departments is superior to that in community hospitals. At our institution, third year undergraduate medical students complete three-week EM rotation at either a tertiary centre or a community hospital. We compared academic and clinical performance between students trained in tertiary care centres and students trained in community hospitals. Methods: Academic and clinical performance in EM was evaluated based on the results of an EM-specific multiple choice examination (MCQE) and an annual Objective Structured Clinical Exam (OSCE) assessing competency in a broad range of clinical scenarios commonly addressed in EM. The 40-question MCQE is administered quarterly and a mix of old and new questions are used to ensure consistency. The OSCE is administered annually and relies on the same principal to remain consistent. OSCE scores are binary: pass or fail. We reviewed MCQE and OSCE scores from three consecutive cohorts of students. Students were pooled into two groups, tertiary and community, based on the site of their EM rotation. Mean MCQE and OSCE performance were compared between the two groups of students using two-tailed unpaired T tests. Chi squared tests were used to identify significant differences in scores between cohorts. Results: MCQE and OSCE scores from 312 students over three consecutive cohorts were analyzed. Cohorts included 104, 100, and 108 students with 61% trained in tertiary centres (N = 191). Students trained in tertiary centres had a mean MCQE score of 77%. Students from community centres had a mean score of 78%. There was no significant difference in MCQE scores between tertiary- and community-trained students (p = 0.6099). The OSCE pass rate was 97% for students trained in tertiary centres and 98% for students trained in community centres. OSCE pass rates were not significantly different between the two groups (p = 0.8145). Conclusion: Despite student perceptions that training in tertiary care EM centres was superior, objective analysis showed that academic and clinical performance were similar regardless of training site.
Building on the recent advances in next-generation sequencing, the integration of genomics, proteomics, metabolomics, and other approaches hold tremendous promise for precision medicine. The approval and adoption of these rapidly advancing technologies and methods presents several regulatory science considerations that need to be addressed. To better understand and address these regulatory science issues, a Clinical and Translational Science Award Working Group convened the Regulatory Science to Advance Precision Medicine Forum. The Forum identified an initial set of regulatory science gaps. The final set of key findings and recommendations provided here address issues related to the lack of standardization of complex tests, preclinical issues, establishing clinical validity and utility, pharmacogenomics considerations, and knowledge gaps.
Detecting gastrointestinal (GI) infection transmission among men who have sex with men (MSM) in England is complicated by a lack of routine sexual behavioural data. We investigated whether gender distributions might generate signals for increased transmission of GI pathogens among MSM. We examined the percentage male of laboratory-confirmed patient-episodes for patients with no known travel history for 10 GI infections of public health interest in England between 2003 and 2013, stratified by age and region. An adult male excess was observed for Shigella spp. (annual maximum 71% male); most pronounced for those aged 25–49 years and living in London, Brighton and Manchester. An adult male excess was observed every year for Entamoeba histolytica (range 59.8–76.1% male), Giardia (53.1–57.6%) and Campylobacter (52.1–53.5%) and for a minority of years for hepatitis A (max. 69.8%) and typhoidal salmonella (max. 65.7%). This approach generated a signal for excess male episodes for six GI pathogens, including a characterised outbreak of Shigella among MSM. Stratified analyses by geography and age group were consistent with MSM transmission for Shigella. Optimisation and routine application of this technique by public health authorities elsewhere might help identify potential GI infection outbreaks due to sexual transmission among MSM, for further investigation.
Early career investigators have few opportunities for targeted training in supportive oncology research. To address this need, we developed, implemented, and evaluated an intensive, six-day workshop on methods in supportive oncology research for trainees and junior faculty across multiple disciplines.
A multidisciplinary team of supportive oncology researchers developed a workshop patterned after the clinical trials workshop offered jointly by the American Society of Clinical Oncology and American Association of Cancer Research. The curriculum included lectures and a mentored experience of writing a research protocol. Each year since 2015, the workshop has accepted and trained 36 early career investigators. Over the course of the workshop, participants present sections of their research protocols daily in small groups led by senior researchers, and have dedicated time to write and revise these sections. Primary outcomes for the workshop included the frequency of completed protocols by the end of the workshop, a pre- and posttest assessing participant knowledge, and follow-up surveys of the participants and their primary mentors.
Over three years, the workshop received 195 applications; 109 early career researchers were competitively selected to participate. All participants (109/109, 100%) completed writing a protocol by the end of their workshop. Participants and their primary mentors reported significant improvements in their research knowledge and skills. Each year, participants rated the workshop highly in terms of satisfaction, value, and likelihood of recommending it to a colleague. One year after the first workshop, most respondents (29/30, 96.7%) had either submitted their protocol or written at least one other protocol.
Significance of results
We developed a workshop on research methods in supportive oncology. More early career investigators applied for the workshop than capacity, and the workshop was fully attended each year. Both the workshop participants and their primary mentors reported improvement in research skills and knowledge.
Unusual speleothems, associated with hyperalkaline (pH > 12) groundwaters
have formed within a shallow, abandoned railway tunnel at Peak Dale,
Derbyshire, UK. The hyperalkaline groundwaters are produced by the leaching
of a thin layer (<2 m) of old lime-kiln waste on the soil-bedrock surface
above the tunnel by rainwater. This results in a different reaction and
chemical process to that more commonly associated with the formation of
calcium carbonate speleothems from Ca-HCO3-type groundwaters and
degassing of CO2. Stalagmites within the Peak Daletunnel have
grown rapidly (averaging 33 mm y–1), following the closure of the
tunnel 70 years ago. They have an unusual morphology comprising a central
sub-horizontally-laminated column of micro- to nano-crystalline calcium
carbonate encompassed by an outer sub-vertical assymetricripple-laminated
layer. The stalagmites are composed largely of secondary calcite forming
pseudomorphs (<1 mm) that we believe to be predominantly after the 'cold
climate' calcium carbonate polymorph, ikaite (calcium carbonate hexahydrate:
CaCO3·6H2O), withminor volumes of small (<5 μm)
pseudomorphs after vaterite. The tunnel has a near constant temperature of
8–9°C, which is slightly above the previously published crystallization
temperatures for ikaite (<6°C). Analysis of a stalagmite actively growing
at the time ofsampling, and preserved immediately within a dry nitrogen
cryogenic vessel, indicates that following crystallization of ikaite,
decomposition to calcite occurs rapidly, if not instantaneously. We believe
this is the first occurrence of this calcium carbonate polymorph observed
Fluctuations of glacier termini were studied in two regions in Alaska. In the Wrangell Mountains, 15 glaciers on Mount Wrangell, an active volcano, have been monitored over the past 30 years by surveying, photogrammetry and satellite. Results, which are consistent between different methods of measurement, indicate that the termini of most glaciers were stationary or retreating slightly. However, the termini of the 30 km long Ahtna Glacier and the smaller Center and South MacKeith Glaciers began to advance in the early 1960s and have advanced steadily between 5 and 18 m a−1 since then. These three glaciers flow from the active North Crater, where increased volcanic heating since 1964 has melted over 7 x 107 m3 of ice. We suspect that volcanic meltwater has changed the basal conditions for the three glaciers, resulting in their advance.
The terminus fluctuations of six tide-water and near-tide-water glaciers in College Fjord, Prince William Sound, have been monitored since 1931 by surveying, photogrammetry and, most recently, by satellite imagery. Harvard Glacier, a 40 km long tide-water glacier, has been advancing at an average rate of nearly 20 ma−1 since 1931, while the adjacent Yale Glacier has retreated at approximately 50 ma−1 during the same period though, for short periods, both of these rates have been much higher. The striking contrast between the terminus behavior of Yale and Harvard Glaciers, which parallel each other in the same fiord, and are derived from the same snowfield, supports the hypothesis that their terminus behavior is largely the result of dynamic controls rather than changes in climate.
Patterns of practice for management of cerebral venous thrombosis in Canada are unknown. We surveyed Canadian neurologists and hematologists regarding anticoagulation in cerebral venous thrombosis. The response rate was 28%, with 27 neurologists and 20 hematologists responding. We found that choice of first-line initial anticoagulation differed significantly between neurologists and hematologists, with 89% of neurologists favouring unfractionated heparin and hematologists’ preference split between unfractionated heparin (50%) and low-molecular-weight heparin (50%). Differences in patterns of practice likely reflect clinical equipoise.
This paper analyzes the optimal allocation of a given antipoverty budget consistent with various usual measures of poverty. It is shown that it is generally optimal to give all the budget either to the poorest or to the richest of the poor. It is only with the Sen index of poverty that it is sometimes optimal to combine both types of allocation. This property may be related to the normalization rule used in the derivation of that measure and sheds some new light on the axiomatics of poverty measurement.
The nutrient choline is necessary for membrane synthesis and methyl donation, with increased requirements during lactation. The majority of immune development occurs postnatally, but the importance of choline supply for immune development during this critical period is unknown. The objective of this study was to determine the importance of maternal supply of choline during suckling on immune function in their offspring among rodents. At parturition, Sprague–Dawley dams were randomised to either a choline-devoid (ChD; n 7) or choline-sufficient (ChS, 1 g/kg choline; n 10) diet with their offspring euthanised at 3 weeks of age. In a second experiment, offspring were weaned to a ChS diet until 10 weeks of age (ChD-ChS, n 5 and ChS-ChS, n 9). Splenocytes were isolated, and parameters of immune function were measured. The ChD offspring received less choline in breast milk and had lower final body and organ weight compared with ChS offspring (P<0·05), but this effect disappeared by week 10 with choline supplementation from weaning. ChD offspring had a higher proportion of T cells expressing activation markers (CD71 or CD28) and a lower proportion of total B cells (CD45RA+) and responded less to T cell stimulation (lower stimulation index and less IFN-γ production) ex vivo (P<0·05). ChD-ChS offspring had a lower proportion of total and activated CD4+ T cells, and produced less IL-6 after mitogen stimulation compared with cells from ChS-ChS (P<0·05). Our study suggests that choline is required in the suckling diet to facilitate immune development, and choline deprivation during this critical period has lasting effects on T cell function later in life.
We sought to conduct a major objective of the CAEP Academic Section, an environmental scan of the academic emergency medicine programs across the 17 Canadian medical schools.
We developed an 84-question questionnaire, which was distributed to academic heads. The responses were validated by phone by the lead author to ensure that the questions were answered completely and consistently. Details of pediatric emergency medicine units were excluded from the scan.
At eight of 17 universities, emergency medicine has full departmental status and at two it has no official academic status. Canadian academic emergency medicine is practiced at 46 major teaching hospitals and 13 specialized pediatric hospitals. Another 69 Canadian hospital EDs regularly take clinical clerks and emergency medicine residents. There are 31 full professors of emergency medicine in Canada. Teaching programs are strong with clerkships offered at 16/17 universities, CCFP(EM) programs at 17/17, and RCPSC residency programs at 14/17. Fourteen sites have at least one physician with a Master’s degree in education. There are 55 clinical researchers with salary support at 13 universities. Sixteen sites have published peer-reviewed papers in the past five years, ranging from four to 235 per site. Annual budgets range from $200,000 to $5,900,000.
This comprehensive review of academic activities in emergency medicine across Canada identifies areas of strengths as well as opportunities for improvement. CAEP and the Academic Section hope we can ultimately improve ED patient care by sharing best academic practices and becoming better teachers, educators, and researchers.
Previous research in leeward Kohala, Hawai'i Island, has determined that the Leeward Kohala Field System (LKFS), a vast agricultural zone covering ∼60 km2, developed between the 14th and 18th centuries AD. Additional analyses have documented the establishment of traditional socioeconomic territories, known as ahupua'a, in tandem with the expansion of the field system. This article further refines the chronology of human settlement and socioeconomic development in leeward Kohala through the analysis of deposits associated with prehistoric residences. Based upon survey and excavation, we present a chronology for Hawaiian household transition and economic development in 2 study areas of leeward Kohala, spanning the field system to the coast. Forty-nine radiocarbon dates from short-lived plant materials and 5 230Th dates on corals from residential and ritual features are synthesized into 3 temporal periods, which allow for comparison of residential size, distribution, number, and associated faunal materials from archaeological deposits. Changes in household composition and economy are suggested to have developed in tandem with the establishment of individual ahupua'a and land divisions within them, and the further development of agricultural production.
A reanalysis of the chronology of Pololu Valley, located in the district of Kohala on Hawai'i Island, is presented using standard radiocarbon and accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) dating. Using curated materials from the 1970s, Pololu is reassessed and found to have the earliest coastal occupations in this part of Hawai'i, beginning about AD 1300. Occupations at the dunes and in the valley interior are investigated, as are dryland and wetland field agricultural systems. These data provide a refined model for expansion and intensification of agricultural production in the 15th–17th centuries, and link this remote valley to demographic and sociopolitical trends that were occurring in the rest of Hawai'i.
Hendra virus (HeV) was first described in 1994 in an outbreak of acute and highly lethal disease in horses and humans in Australia. Equine cases continue to be diagnosed periodically, yet the predisposing factors for infection remain unclear. We undertook an analysis of equine submissions tested for HeV by the Queensland government veterinary reference laboratory over a 20-year period to identify and investigate any patterns. We found a marked increase in testing from July 2008, primarily reflecting a broadening of the HeV clinical case definition. Peaks in submissions for testing, and visitations to the Government HeV website, were associated with reported equine incidents. Significantly differing between-year HeV detection rates in north and south Queensland suggest a fundamental difference in risk exposure between the two regions. The statistical association between HeV detection and stockhorse type may suggest that husbandry is a more important risk determinant than breed per se. The detection of HeV in horses with neither neurological nor respiratory signs poses a risk management challenge for attending veterinarians and laboratory staff, reinforcing animal health authority recommendations that appropriate risk management strategies be employed for all sick horses, and by anyone handling sick horses or associated biological samples.
Markarian 273 and Markarian 231 are ultra-luminous IR galaxies which show signs of merger activity. Their radio continuum and spectral line emission has been imaged on scales of tens of parsec using MERLIN. Mrk 273 and Mrk 231 are classed as Seyfert types 2 and 1 respectively. The distribution and velocity gradients shown by OH masers and HI absorption are consistent with material in a rotating disk or ring, with the axis at greater than 45° to the line of sight in Mrk 273, and at less than 45° to the line of sight in Mrk 231. We estimate the amount of mass enclosed and infer its distribution from irregularities in the maser morphologies and comparison with HI and radio continuum data.