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Catheter-associated urinary tract infections in 592 hospitals immediately declined after federal value-based incentive program implementation, but this was fully attributable to a concurrent surveillance case definition revision. Post revision, more hospitals had favorable standardized infection ratios, likely leading to artificial inflation of their performance scores unrelated to changes in patient safety.
To assess the safety of, and subsequent allergy documentation associated with, an antimicrobial stewardship intervention consisting of test-dose challenge procedures prompted by an electronic guideline for hospitalized patients with reported β-lactam allergies.
Retrospective cohort study.
Large healthcare system consisting of 2 academic and 3 community acute-care hospitals between April 2016 and December 2017.
We evaluated β-lactam antibiotic test-dose outcomes, including adverse drug reactions (ADRs), hypersensitivity reactions (HSRs), and electronic health record (EHR) allergy record updates. HSR predictors were examined using a multivariable logistic regression model. Modification of the EHR allergy record after test doses considered relevant allergy entries added, deleted, and/or specified.
We identified 1,046 test-doses: 809 (77%) to cephalosporins, 148 (14%) to penicillins, and 89 (9%) to carbapenems. Overall, 78 patients (7.5%; 95% confidence interval [CI], 5.9%–9.2%) had signs or symptoms of an ADR, and 40 (3.8%; 95% CI, 2.8%–5.2%) had confirmed HSRs. Most HSRs occurred at the second (ie, full-dose) step (68%) and required no treatment beyond drug discontinuation (58%); 3 HSR patients were treated with intramuscular epinephrine. Reported cephalosporin allergy history was associated with an increased odds of HSR (odds ratio [OR], 2.96; 95% CI, 1.34–6.58). Allergies were updated for 474 patients (45%), with records specified (82%), deleted (16%), and added (8%).
This antimicrobial stewardship intervention using β-lactam test-dose procedures was safe. Overall, 3.8% of patients with β-lactam allergy histories had an HSR; cephalosporin allergy histories conferred a 3-fold increased risk. Encouraging EHR documentation might improve this safe, effective, and practical acute-care antibiotic stewardship tool.
National policies target healthcare-associated infections using medical claims and National Healthcare Safety Network surveillance data. We found low concordance between the 2 data sources in rates and rankings for surgical site infection following colon surgery in 155 hospitals, underscoring the limitations in evaluating hospital quality by claims data.
In 2012, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services expanded a 2008 program that eliminated additional Medicare payment for mediastinitis following coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) to include Medicaid. We aimed to evaluate the impact of this Medicaid program on mediastinitis rates reported by the National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN) compared with the rates of a condition not targeted by the program, deep-space surgical site infection (SSI) after knee replacement.
Interrupted time series with comparison group.
We included surveillance data from nonfederal acute-care hospitals participating in the NHSN and reporting CABG or knee replacement outcomes from January 2009 through June 2017. We examined the Medicaid program’s impact on NHSN-reported infection rates, adjusting for secular trends. The data analysis used generalized estimating equations with robust sandwich variance estimators.
During the study period, 196 study hospitals reported 273,984 CABGs to the NHSN, resulting in 970 mediastinitis cases (0.35%), and 294 hospitals reported 555,395 knee replacements, with 1,751 resultant deep-space SSIs (0.32%). There was no significant change in incidence of either condition during the study. Mediastinitis models showed no effect of the 2012 Medicaid program on either secular trend during the postprogram versus preprogram periods (P=.70) or an immediate program effect (P=.83). Results were similar in sensitivity analyses when adjusting for hospital characteristics, restricting to hospitals with consistent NHSN reporting or incorporating a program implementation roll-in period. Knee replacement models also showed no program effect.
The 2012 Medicaid program to eliminate additional payments for mediastinitis following CABG had no impact on reported mediastinitis rates.
M. M. Hedman, University of Idaho Moscow, Idaho, USA,
F. Postberg, University of Heidelberg Heidelberg, GERMANY,
D. P. Hamilton, University of Maryland College Park, Maryland, USA,
S. Renner, University of Lille Lille, FRANCE,
H.-W. Hsu, University of Colorado Boulder, Colorado, USA
All of the giant planets in the outer Solar System possess rings composed primarily of particles less than 100 microns across. Such small particles are conventionally referred to as “dust grains” regardless of their composition, and so these rings are considered “dusty rings” (as opposed to the more famous main rings of Saturn and Uranus, whose particles are more than a millimeter across). Dusty rings are often very tenuous and so can be much more difficult to observe than Saturn's broad, bright, and dense main rings. Nevertheless, dusty rings are extremely interesting because they have very rich dynamics and are extremely sensitive probes of their environment.
The high surface-area-to-volume ratio of dust-sized grains makes them much more responsive to non-gravitational forces like solar radiation pressure, plasma drag, and torques from the planet's electromagnetic field. Furthermore, sub-millimeter particles can be lost from the ring system on relatively short timescales due to erosion via charged-particle and micrometeoroid bombardment or through ejection by the non-gravitational forces listed above. This means that small particles need to be constantly supplied to these rings from larger bodies, and indeed all of the known dusty rings are associated with larger objects that are the likely sources of dusty debris. The most dramatic example of this is Saturn's E ring, which is clearly supplied by material erupting from beneath the surface of the geologically active moon Enceladus. However, this is a special case, and most dusty rings are instead associated with denser rings (which are composed primarily of millimeter-to-metersized particles) or small moons. These objects can serve as dust sources because they are constantly being bombarded by micrometeoroids, and these impacts release fine debris that can escape the weak gravitational fields of these small bodies and go into orbit around the planet. Note that the amount of dust released by this process depends on the size, mass, and regolith properties of the source object, and calculations of the dust production rate based on simple estimates of impact ejecta velocity distributions suggest that source moons that are several kilometers across are the most efficient at producing dusty rings (Burns et al., 1999).
As the consciousness of energy saving and carbon reduction and comfortable environment is paid increasing attention to, the common objective of various countries with decreasing energy is to develop and popularize high efficiency and low running noise blowers. This study uses CFD to calculate the flow field and performance of a blower and compare with the experimental measurement. The characteristic curve of blower shows that the simulated and experimental values are close to each other, the difference between the values is only 0.4%. This analysis result proofs the CFD package is a highly reliable tool for the future blower design improvement. In addition, this study discusses the noise distribution of blower flow field, the periodic pressure output value calculated by CFD is used in the sound source input of sound pressure field, so as to simulate and analyze the aerodynamic noise reading of the flow field around the blower. The result shows that the simulated value of flow field around the fan has as high as 80.5 dB(A) ∼ 81.5 dB(A) noise level and is agree with measurement (82 dB(A)). The noise level is low but has a sharp noise. According to the numerical results, designer of the blower modify the tongue geometry and remove the sharp noise.
Background: Instrumentation failure (IF) such proximal junctional kyphosis/failure or distal junctional failure (PJK/PJF/DJF), rod fracture and screw-loosening can cause morbidity in patients with spinal deformity correction. Factors such as bone mineral density (BMD) or region of deformity correction may play a role in postoperative IF. Methods: We reviewed the relationship between IF and BMD or extent of spinal deformity. IF includes PJK/PJF/DJF, fractured rod, screw-looseing, radiculopathy, and non-union. BMD groups included Normal, osteopenia/osteoporosis, and Unknown. The extent of correction included Lumbar, Short Thoracolumbar (5-8 levels), Long Thoracolumbar (8 to 12 levels), and Cervical-thoracic. Results: 60 patients (41:19 F:M) were included, with average age of 65. Total IF=29 patients (48.3%). Normal BMD in N=14, with half of them (50.0%) developing IF; Low BMD in N=15, with one-third of them (33.3%) developing IF. Lumbar correction was performed in N=19, with IF in 36.8%; Short Thoracolumbar correction was performed in N=28, with IF in 46.4%; Long Thoracolumbar correction was performed in N=11, with IF in 81.8%; and Cervical correction in N=2, with no postoperative IF. Conclusions: Patients that received long-segment thoracolumbar had the highest rates of postoperative morbidity. We did not demonstrate an association between abnormal BMD and postoperative IF. A larger study would be needed for further investigations.
Background: Morbidity can be high in the management of adult spinal deformity patients. Complications include blood loss (EBL), durotomy, radicular pain, and postoperative hardware failure. Utilization of one versus two spinal surgeons in spinal deformity correction reduces overall perioperative morbidity is unclear. Methods: All procedures were performed by surgeons at a single institution between January 2012-2015. Patients were followed for a minimum of one year and maximum of four years. We retrospectively reviewed 60 cases of adult spinal deformity. Our cohort was divided into 1 versus 2 surgeons (12 vs 48 cases). We analyzed these cases for estimated blood loss and peri-operative complications. Results: Cases involving long thoracic to pelvis correction (T3-T6) was 20.8% in the 2 surgeons group and 8.3% in the 1 surgeon group. The EBL >3.0 L for 1 versus 2 surgeon groups were 25% and 41.6% respectively. Major complications in the 1 versus 2 surgeon group were 25% and 47.9% and the revision rates were 25% versus 37.5%. The percentage of minor complications in the 1 versus 2 surgeon group was 33.3% versus 14.6%. Conclusions: Utilizing two surgeons did not reduce complication rates. Procedures performed by two surgeons were more extensive deformity corrections. The extent of correction is the likely explanation for differing complication rates.
Researchers have studied psychological disorders extensively from a common cause perspective, in which symptoms are treated as independent indicators of an underlying disease. In contrast, the causal systems perspective seeks to understand the importance of individual symptoms and symptom-to-symptom relationships. In the current study, we used network analysis to examine the relationships between and among depression and anxiety symptoms from the causal systems perspective.
We utilized data from a large psychiatric sample at admission and discharge from a partial hospital program (N = 1029, mean treatment duration = 8 days). We investigated features of the depression/anxiety network including topology, network centrality, stability of the network at admission and discharge, as well as change in the network over the course of treatment.
Individual symptoms of depression and anxiety were more related to other symptoms within each disorder than to symptoms between disorders. Sad mood and worry were among the most central symptoms in the network. The network structure was stable both at admission and between admission and discharge, although the overall strength of symptom relationships increased as symptom severity decreased over the course of treatment.
Examining depression and anxiety symptoms as dynamic systems may provide novel insights into the maintenance of these mental health problems.
Accurate estimation of food portion size is critical in dietary studies. Hands are potentially useful as portion size estimation aids; however, their accuracy has not been tested. The aim of the present study was to test the accuracy of a novel portion size estimation method using the width of the fingers as a ‘ruler’ to measure the dimensions of foods (‘finger width method’), as well as fists and thumb or finger tips. These hand measures were also compared with household measures (cups and spoons). A total of sixty-seven participants (70 % female; age 32·7 (sd 13·7) years; BMI 23·2 (sd 3·5) kg/m2) attended a 1·5 h session in which they estimated the portion sizes of forty-two pre-weighed foods and liquids. Hand measurements were used in conjunction with geometric formulas to convert estimations to volumes. Volumes determined with hand and household methods were converted to estimated weights using density factors. Estimated weights were compared with true weights, and the percentage difference from the true weight was used to compare accuracy between the hand and household methods. Of geometrically shaped foods and liquids estimated with the finger width method, 80 % were within ±25 % of the true weight of the food, and 13 % were within ±10 %, in contrast to 29 % of those estimated with the household method being within ±25 % of the true weight of the food, and 8 % being within ±10 %. For foods that closely resemble a geometric shape, the finger width method provides a novel and acceptably accurate method of estimating portion size.
Major questions remain regarding the dysfunctional neural circuitry underlying the pathophysiology of bipolar disorder (BD) in both youths and adults. In both age groups, studies implicate abnormal intrinsic functional connectivity among prefrontal, limbic and striatal areas.
We collected resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) data from youths and adults (ages 10–50 years) with BD (n = 39) and healthy volunteers (HV; n = 78). We identified brain regions with aberrant intrinsic functional connectivity in BD by first comparing voxel-wise mean global connectivity and then conducting correlation analyses. We used k-means clustering and multidimensional scaling to organize all detected regions into networks.
Across the brain, we detected areas of dysconnectivity in both youths and adults with BD relative to HV. There were no significant age-group × diagnosis interactions. When organized by interregional connectivity, the areas of dysconnectivity in patients with BD comprised two networks: one of temporal and parietal areas involved in late stages of visual processing, and one of corticostriatal areas involved in attention, cognitive control and response generation.
These data suggest that two networks show abnormal intrinsic functional connectivity in BD. Regions in these networks have been implicated previously in BD. We observed similar dysconnectivity in youths and adults with BD. These findings provide guidance for refining models of network-based dysfunction in BD.
Recent meta-analyses of resting-state networks in major depressive disorder (MDD) implicate network disruptions underlying cognitive and affective features of illness. Heterogeneity of findings to date may stem from the relative lack of data parsing clinical features of MDD such as phase of illness and the burden of multiple episodes.
Resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging data were collected from 17 active MDD and 34 remitted MDD patients, and 26 healthy controls (HCs) across two sites. Participants were medication-free and further subdivided into those with single v. multiple episodes to examine disease burden. Seed-based connectivity using the posterior cingulate cortex (PCC) seed to probe the default mode network as well as the amygdala and subgenual anterior cingulate cortex (sgACC) seeds to probe the salience network (SN) were conducted.
Young adults with remitted MDD demonstrated hyperconnectivity of the left PCC to the left inferior frontal gyrus and of the left sgACC to the right ventromedial prefrontal cortex (PFC) and left hippocampus compared with HCs. Episode-independent effects were observed between the left PCC and the right dorsolateral PFC, as well as between the left amygdala and right insula and caudate, whereas the burden of multiple episodes was associated with hypoconnectivity of the left PCC to multiple cognitive control regions as well as hypoconnectivity of the amygdala to large portions of the SN.
This is the first study of a homogeneous sample of unmedicated young adults with a history of adolescent-onset MDD illustrating brain-based episodic features of illness.
Aerobic exercise training has been shown to attenuate cognitive decline and reduce brain atrophy with advancing age. The extent to which resistance exercise training improves cognition and prevents brain atrophy is less known, and few studies include long-term follow-up cognitive and neuroimaging assessments. We report data from a randomized controlled trial of 155 older women, who engaged in 52 weeks of resistance training (either once- or twice-weekly) or balance-and-toning (twice-weekly). Executive functioning and memory were assessed at baseline, 1-year follow-up (i.e., immediately post-intervention), and 2-year follow-up. A subset underwent structural magnetic resonance imaging scans at those time points. At 2-year follow-up, both frequencies of resistance training promoted executive function compared to balance-and-toning (standardized difference [d]=.31–.48). Additionally, twice-weekly resistance training promoted memory (d=.45), reduced cortical white matter atrophy (d=.45), and increased peak muscle power (d=.27) at 2-year follow-up relative to balance-and-toning. These effects were independent of one another. These findings suggest resistance training may have a long-term impact on cognition and white matter volume in older women. (JINS, 2015, 21, 745–756)
We describe a laboratory plasma physics experiment at Los Alamos National Laboratory that uses two merging supersonic plasma jets formed and launched by pulsed-power-driven railguns. The jets can be formed using any atomic species or mixture available in a compressed-gas bottle and have the following nominal initial parameters at the railgun nozzle exit: ne ≈ ni ~ 1016 cm−3, Te ≈ Ti ≈ 1.4 eV, Vjet ≈ 30–100 km/s, mean charge
≈ 1, sonic Mach number Ms ≡ Vjet/Cs > 10, jet diameter = 5 cm, and jet length ≈20 cm. Experiments to date have focused on the study of merging-jet dynamics and the shocks that form as a result of the interaction, in both collisional and collisionless regimes with respect to the inter-jet classical ion mean free path, and with and without an applied magnetic field. However, many other studies are also possible, as discussed in this paper.
The Helicon-Cathode(HelCat) device is a medium-size linear experiment suitable for a wide range of basic plasma science experiments in areas such as electrostatic turbulence and transport, magnetic relaxation, and high power microwave (HPM)-plasma interactions. The HelCat device is based on dual plasma sources located at opposite ends of the 4 m long vacuum chamber – an RF helicon source at one end and a thermionic cathode at the other. Thirteen coils provide an axial magnetic field B ⩾ 0.220 T that can be configured individually to give various magnetic configurations (e.g. solenoid, mirror, cusp). Additional plasma sources, such as a compact coaxial plasma gun, are also utilized in some experiments, and can be located either along the chamber for perpendicular (to the background magnetic field) plasma injection, or at one of the ends for parallel injection. Using the multiple plasma sources, a wide range of plasma parameters can be obtained. Here, the HelCat device is described in detail and some examples of results from previous and ongoing experiments are given. Additionally, examples of planned experiments and device modifications are also discussed.
In this study, the region-point-matching technique (RPMT) is applied to examine the scattering problem of truncated semi-elliptic canyons under plane SH-wave excitation. The partition of the entire analyzed region into two subregions is carried out via an introduction of the elliptic-arc auxiliary boundary. Taking advantage of appropriate wavefunctions in elliptic coordinates, the expression of antiplane motions for each subregion can be obtained. To accomplish the indispensable coordinate shift, the coordinate-transformed relation, intended as a substitute for the addition theorem involving Mathieu functions, is well utilized. Integration of the coordinate-transformed relation into the RPMT brings about the rapid construction of simultaneous equations. Effects of pertinent parameters on steady-state and transient surface motions are demonstrated. Computed results show that, for horizontal incidence, the potential high level of ground shaking may occur near the illuminated upper corner of the canyon. In such a small localized region, due to the occurrence of constructive interference between the reflected waves from the horizontal ground surface and the scattered waves from the corners of the canyon, the peak amplifaction may be at least two times that of free-field response.