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To investigate the central electrode artefact effect of different ion chambers in the verification phantom using the dose calculation algorithms Analytical Anisotropic Algorithm (AAA) and Acuros XB.
Materials and methods:
The dosimetric study was conducted using an in-house fabricated polymethyl methacrylate head phantom. The treatment planning system (TPS)-calculated doses in the phantom with detectors were compared against the dummy detector fillets using AAA and Acuros XB algorithm. The planned and measured doses were compared for the study.
The mean percentage variation in volumetric-modulated arc therapy plans using Acuros XB and the measurement in the head phantom are statistically significant (p-value = 0.001) for FC65 and CC13 chambers. In small volume chambers (A14SL and CC01), the measured and TPS-calculated dose shows a good agreement.
The study confirmed the CT set of the phantom with detectors (FC65 and CC13) give more artefacts/heterogeneity caused a significant variation in dose calculation using Acuros XB. Therefore, the study suggests a method of using phantom CT set with the dummy detector for mean dose calculation for the Acuros XB algorithm.
Social capital is emerging as an important component of mental well-being. Our aim was to assess the relationship between social capital and common mental disorders and to explore the role of social capital in the relationship between deprivation and common mental disorders.
This study used data collected from 7023 adults in England who completed the Adult Psychiatric Morbidity Survey (2007). Common mental disorders (CMD) were measured using CIS-R. Questions on both cognitive (CSC) and structural social capital were included, as well as data on area level deprivation.
We found a strong association between higher CSC and lower levels of CMD, depression and anxiety. Structural social capital was associated with lower levels of CMD and depression but was not conclusively associated with lower levels of anxiety. While there is a relationship between low social capital and deprivation, we found that higher CSC was still associated with lower CMD in participants living in deprived areas. Results for structural social capital were less conclusive although an association with lower overall CMD was still found in the most deprived communities.
In a nationally representative sample, higher social capital is associated with lower levels of CMD. There appears to be a relationship between low social capital and deprivation and this may have implications for the mental wellbeing of individuals living in deprived communities.
Quitlines are standard care for smoking cessation; however, retaining clients in services is a problem. Little is known about factors that may predict dropout.
To examine predictors of retention while in-program and at follow-up for clients enrolling in a state quitline.
This was a retrospective analysis of quitline enrolled clients from 2011 to 2017 (N = 49,347). Client retention in-program was categorized as (a) low adherence to treatment (receiving zero coaching calls), moderate (1–2 calls), and high adherence (3+ calls). Dropout at follow-up included participants who were not reached for the 7-month follow-up.
More than half the sample dropped out during treatment; 61% were not reached for follow-up. Women (odds ratio (OR) = 1.21; 95% confidence interval (CI) = [1.16, 127]) and those with high levels of nicotine dependence (OR = 1.03; 95% CI = [1.02, 1.04]) were more likely to have moderate adherence to treatment (1–2 coaching calls). Dropout at follow-up was more likely among clients who used nicotine replacement therapy (OR = 1.14; 95% CI = [1.09, 1.19]) and less likely among those who had high treatment adherence (OR = 0.41; 95% CI = [0.39, 0.42]).
Given the relapsing nature of tobacco use and the harms related to tobacco use, quitlines can improve their impact by offering tailored services to enhance client engagement and retention in-treatment and at follow-up.
The eastern Arabian Sea is influenced by both the advection of upwelled water from the western Arabian Sea and winter convective mixing. Therefore, sediments collected from the eastern Arabian Sea can help to understand the long-term seasonal hydrographic changes. We used the planktonic foraminifera census and stable isotopic ratio (δ18O) from sediments drilled during the International Ocean Discovery Program Expedition 355 to reconstruct surface hydrographic changes in the eastern Arabian Sea during the last 350 kyr. The increased abundance of Globigerina bulloides suggests enhanced advection of upwelled water during the latter half of MIS7 and the beginning of MIS6, as a result of a strengthened summer monsoon. A large drop in upwelling and/or advection of upwelled water from the western Arabian Sea is inferred during the subsequent interval of MIS6, based on the rare presence of G. bulloides. The comparable relative abundance of Neogloboquadrina dutertrei, G. bulloides and Globigerinoides ruber suggests that during the early part of MIS5, hydrographic conditions were similar to today. The upwelling decreased and winter convection increased with the progress of the glacial interval. A good coherence between planktonic foraminiferal assemblage-based monsoon stacks from both the eastern and western Arabian Sea suggests a coeval response of the entire northern Arabian Sea to the glacial–interglacial changes. The glacial–interglacial difference in δ18Osw-ivc was at a maximum with 4–5 psu change in salinity during Termination 2 and 3, and a minimum during Termination 4. The significantly reduced regional contribution to the glacial–interglacial change in δ18Osw-ivc during Termination 4 suggests a lesser change in the monsoon.
Evidence is mixed on e-cigarette's effectiveness as a tobacco cessation aid. Research suggests that e-cigarette users face greater barriers to quitting tobacco.
To examine the association between e-cigarette use and tobacco cessation outcomes among quitline callers.
We examined 2,204 callers who enrolled and completed 7-month follow-up surveys between April 2014 and January 2017. We examined the association between any e-cigarette use and tobacco cessation. We also evaluated these relationships by e-cigarette use patterns between enrollment and 7-month follow-up: sustained, adopted, discontinued, and non-use. We used multivariable logistic regression to control for caller characteristics, tobacco history, and program utilization.
Overall, 18% of callers reported using e-cigarettes at enrollment, follow-up, or both. Compared to non-users, e-cigarette users were more likely to be younger, non-Hispanic, and report a mental health condition. The adjusted odds of tobacco cessation were not statistically different for callers who used e-cigarettes compared to those who did not (adjusted odds ratios = 1.02, 95% confidence interval 0.79–1.32). Results were similar when examining cessation by patterns of e-cigarette use.
E-cigarette use was not associated with tobacco cessation. This suggests that e-cigarette use may neither facilitate nor deter tobacco cessation among quitline callers. Future research should continue exploring how e-cigarette use affects quitting.
Previous research suggests that persistence, an individual difference characteristic representing the ability and willingness to maintain engagement in challenging or aversive contexts, may relate to smoking relapse. Improving understanding of the persistence-relapse risk association could guide improvements in behavioural interventions. We explored whether persistence and gender related to change in smoking urges across multiple cue exposure trials (an analogue of extinction learning and relapse risk). Participants included abstinent smokers who completed 12 massed, 5-minute smoking cue exposure trials using guided imagery as well as olfactory, tactile, visual and motor cues associated with smoking. We used multilevel logistic growth curve modelling to explore predictor associations with change in urge. Results suggested that gender related to urge whereby males showed greater initial and sustained reactivity than females. Persistence was not associated with female urge trajectories. However, compared to males with high persistence, males with low persistence evidenced sustained urge reactivity over time. Results suggest that greater persistence relates to reduction of conditioned responding (e.g., urges) among abstinent male smokers when exposure trials include complex cues most closely related to nicotine self-administration. Because persistence is modifiable, males with low persistence may benefit from interventions that include elements designed to increase persistence in urge eliciting situations.
A total of 45 strains of Vibrio cholerae O1 isolated from 10 different places in India where they were associated with cases of cholera between the years 2007 and 2008 were examined by molecular methods. With the help of phenotypic and genotypic tests the strains were confirmed to be O1 El Tor biotype strains with classical ctxB gene. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) analysis by double – mismatch amplification mutation assay PCR showed 16 of these strains carried the ctxB-7 allele reported in Haitian strains. Sequencing of the ctxB gene in all the 45 strains revealed that in 16 strains the histidine at the 20th amino acid position had been replaced by asparagine and this single nucleotide polymorphism did not affect cholera toxin production as revealed by beads enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. This study shows that the new ctxB gene sequence was circulating in different places in India. Seven representatives of these 45 strains analysed by pulsed – field gel electrophoresis showed four distinct Not I digested profiles showing that multiple clones were causing cholera in 2007 and 2008.
Gender-based violence (GBV) is both a global public health problem and violation of human rights. Refugees and internally displaced persons experience an increased risk of GBV and health outcomes associated with GBV are often exacerbated in conflict settings.
A mixed methods study to examine the feasibility and acceptability of universal screening for GBV in a refugee population in the Dadaab refugee camp of Kenya, using the ASIST-GBV from January to July 2015.
Of 9366 women offered screening at International Rescue Committee health clinics, about 89% (n = 8369) female refugees consented to participate. Only 15% of the potentially eligible population could participate in GBV screening because of the ongoing struggle to identify private space in the clinics. Over 85% of women reported being ‘willing’ or ‘very willing’ to participate in GBV screening; 96% felt they had a good or very good experience with the screening protocol. Qualitative findings stressed the importance of securing a room/space in the busy clinic is critical to universal screening with referral to safe and confidential services for survivors.
The findings suggest that the evidence-based ASIST-GBV is both feasible to implement and acceptable to both providers and women seeking care. Universal GBV screening and referral is an effective way for health care and service providers in humanitarian settings to assist survivors of GBV.
The Fontan connection, originally described in 1971, is used to provide palliation for patients with many forms of CHDs that cannot support a biventricular circulation. An increasing number of females who have undergone these connections in childhood are now surviving into adulthood and some are becoming pregnant. We report a case of a 29-year-old woman who presented with a twin pregnancy at 33 weeks of gestation. She had significant deterioration of her cardiovascular status before the twin babies were delivered by emergency caesarean section owing to associated obstetric complications. This report also highlights the various maternal and fetal complications occurring in pregnancy of Fontan-palliated patients and suggests the need for meticulous pre-conception counselling and strict perinatal care.
In this study, we present the case of a neonate with obstructed infracardiac total anomalous pulmonary venous connection with severe pulmonary hypertension and a patent ductus arteriosus with right-to-left shunting. The patient had an unusual finding of pandiastolic flow reversal in the upper descending thoracic aorta. He underwent emergency surgical re-routing of the pulmonary veins to the left atrium, and postoperative echocardiography showed disappearance of the descending aortic flow reversal. We hypothesise that in severely obstructed total anomalous pulmonary venous connection the left ventricular output may be extremely low, resulting in flow reversal in the descending aorta.
To report the International Nosocomial Infection Control Consortium surveillance data from 40 hospitals (20 cities) in India 2004–2013.
Surveillance using US National Healthcare Safety Network’s criteria and definitions, and International Nosocomial Infection Control Consortium methodology.
We collected data from 236,700 ICU patients for 970,713 bed-days
Pooled device-associated healthcare-associated infection rates for adult and pediatric ICUs were 5.1 central line–associated bloodstream infections (CLABSIs)/1,000 central line–days, 9.4 cases of ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAPs)/1,000 mechanical ventilator–days, and 2.1 catheter-associated urinary tract infections/1,000 urinary catheter–days
In neonatal ICUs (NICUs) pooled rates were 36.2 CLABSIs/1,000 central line–days and 1.9 VAPs/1,000 mechanical ventilator–days
Extra length of stay in adult and pediatric ICUs was 9.5 for CLABSI, 9.1 for VAP, and 10.0 for catheter-associated urinary tract infections. Extra length of stay in NICUs was 14.7 for CLABSI and 38.7 for VAP
Crude extra mortality was 16.3% for CLABSI, 22.7% for VAP, and 6.6% for catheter-associated urinary tract infections in adult and pediatric ICUs, and 1.2% for CLABSI and 8.3% for VAP in NICUs
Pooled device use ratios were 0.21 for mechanical ventilator, 0.39 for central line, and 0.53 for urinary catheter in adult and pediatric ICUs; and 0.07 for mechanical ventilator and 0.06 for central line in NICUs.
Despite a lower device use ratio in our ICUs, our device-associated healthcare-associated infection rates are higher than National Healthcare Safety Network, but lower than International Nosocomial Infection Control Consortium Report.
Infect. Control Hosp. Epidemiol. 2016;37(2):172–181
We consider a viscous drop, loaded with an insoluble surfactant, spreading over an inclined plane that is covered initially with a thin surfactant-free liquid film. Lubrication theory is employed to model the flow using coupled nonlinear evolution equations for the film thickness and surfactant concentration. Exploiting high-resolution numerical simulations, we describe the late-time multi-region asymptotic structure of the spatially one-dimensional spreading flow. A simplified differential–algebraic equation model is derived for key variables characterising the spreading process, using which the late-time spreading and thinning rates are determined. Focusing on the neighbourhood of the drop’s leading-edge effective contact line, we then examine the stability of this region to small-amplitude disturbances with transverse variation. A dispersion relationship is described using long-wavelength asymptotics and numerical simulations, which reveals physical mechanisms and new scaling properties of the instability.
Photovoltaic (PV) systems are progressively used for decentralized electricity generation. To obtain the maximum yield from such systems, optimisation of all components is essential. In this contribution, we provide a comprehensive modelling and sizing of PV systems for any location. Three applications are here presented providing real time monitoring of PV potential, accurate prediction of yield taking into account thermodynamic temperature effects, optimization of modules orientation addressing the effects of shading and efficient sizing of inverter for a higher yield output. When combined, these models can accurately predict the real time performance of any PV system.
A high gain ZnO nanowire (NW) based photodetector was fabricated, which was sensitive to photoexcitation at or below 370 nm corresponding to the band-edge of ZnO. At an incident wavelength of 370 nm and a bias field of 5 kV/cm, the maximum responsivity was over 105 A/W corresponding to an extremely high photoconductive gain of the order of 106. Through this work we provide experimental evidence of the role of surface and defects in carrier dynamics, resulting in enhanced photoresponse. Using intensity and temperature dependence of the rise and decay rates of photocurrent, we present a detailed analysis that provides an estimate of the activation energies of carrier trapping mechanisms.
To determine the prognostic value of laryngoscopy in predicting the recovery of unilateral vocal fold paralysis.
A prospective study was carried out of all patients with unilateral vocal fold paralysis without a progressive lesion or arytenoid dislocation.
Among the 66 candidates, 15 recovered. Patients with interarytenoid paralysis (p < 0.001) or posterolateral tilt of the arytenoid (p = 0.028) had less chance of recovery. Among 51 patients who did not recover, 25.49 per cent regained phonatory function by compensatory movement of the normal side; the rest required an intervention. Intervention requirement was significantly less for those patients who had isolated glottic level compensation. The paralysed vocal fold was at the same level in 32.35 per cent of patients, higher in 38.23 per cent and lower in 29.42 per cent. In those in whom vocal folds were in the abducted position (46.67 per cent), the affected vocal fold was at a lower position on phonation. Inter-observer reliability assessment revealed excellent to good agreement for all criteria.
Interarytenoid paralysis and posterolateral tilt of the arytenoid were predictors of poor recovery.
The Midnight Snapper Macolor macularis, is reported for the first time from the Indian exclusive economic zone based on the two specimens collected from Cochin Fisheries Harbour, Kerala on the south-west coast of India on December 2012 and October 2013. Morphometric and meristic data of the specimens are presented and discussed.
We report a stable CdS/Sb2S3/SnSe heterojunction thin film solar cell deposited on SnO2:F (FTO) – coated glass substrates. Thermal evaporation at 10-5 Torr with substrate temperature of 400 °C was used to deposit Sb2S3 and SnSe thin films of 450 nm and 160 nm, respectively. Thin film Sb2S3 has an optical band gap (Eg) of 1.48 eV and photoconductivity (σp) of 4x10-7 Ω-1 cm-1 and thin film SnSe has an Eg of 1.28 eV and σp of 2 Ω-1 cm-1. The chemically deposited CdS thin film heated at 400 °C shows an Eg of 2.34 eV and σp of 0.1 Ω-1 cm-1. Stabilized solar cell structures with these thin films, FTO/CdS/Sb2S3/SnSe/C-Ag, showed open circuit voltage (Voc) of 0.60 V, short circuit current density (Jsc) of 5.51 mA/cm2 and power conversion efficiency (η) of 0.96% with a fill factor FF of 0.29. In the absence of the SnSe layer, Jsc decreases to 4.77 mA/cm2.
The thyroid gland is removed en bloc during laryngectomy. There are no objective criteria for deciding the extent of thyroid gland resection in primary hypopharyngeal cancer cases. The present study aimed to determine the incidence of thyroid gland involvement in hypopharyngeal cancer and identify the various predictors of this involvement.
This paper reports a retrospective analysis of 358 patients with hypopharyngeal cancer, who underwent total laryngectomy with partial or total pharyngectomy at Tata Memorial Hospital, Mumbai between 2004 and 2010.
The mean age of this population was 61 years. The pyriform sinus was the most common hypopharyngeal subsite involved (in 89 per cent of cases). Most patients underwent hemi-thyroidectomy as part of their surgery. The thyroid gland was involved in only 13 per cent of cases.
Thyroid gland involvement is not common in hypopharyngeal cancer. Cases that involved the post-cricoid area, subglottic extension, extralaryngeal spread or prior tracheostomy were associated with a higher risk of thyroid gland involvement. Ipsilateral thyroidectomy is sufficient in most patients undergoing surgery (laryngectomy with partial or total pharyngectomy) for hypopharyngeal cancers.
Chemically deposited thin film stack of SnSe-ZnSe-Cu2-xSe was heated in nitrogen with Se vapor at 350-400 oC to produce Cu2ZnSnSe4 (CZTSe) thin films. For this, a thin film of SnSe with 180 nm thickness was deposited at 26 °C from a chemical bath containing tin(II) chloride, triethanolamine, sodium hydroxide, sodium selenosulfate, and a small quantity of polyvinylpyrrolidone. Thin films of ZnSe and Cu2-xSe were subsequently deposited on this SnSe film, also from chemical bath. The CZTSe thin film produced this way shows X-ray diffraction pattern matching that of Cu2ZnSnSe4 (kesterite/stannite) and have a Zn-rich composition. The film has an optical band gap of 0.9-1.0 eV and p-type electrical conductivity, 0.2-0.06 Ω-1 cm-1.