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To investigate the timing and routes of contamination of the rooms of patients newly admitted to the hospital.
Observational cohort study and simulations of pathogen transfer.
A Veterans’ Affairs hospital.
Patients newly admitted to the hospital with no known carriage of healthcare-associated pathogens.
Interactions between the participants and personnel or portable equipment were observed, and cultures of high-touch surfaces, floors, bedding, and patients’ socks and skin were collected for up to 4 days. Cultures were processed for Clostridioides difﬁcile, methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), and vancomycin-resistant enterococci (VRE). Simulations were conducted with bacteriophage MS2 to assess plausibility of transfer from contaminated floors to high-touch surfaces and to assess the effectiveness of wearing slippers in reducing transfer.
Environmental cultures became positive for at least 1 pathogen in 10 (59%) of the 17 rooms, with cultures positive for MRSA, C. difficile, and VRE in the rooms of 10 (59%), 2 (12%), and 2 (12%) participants, respectively. For all 14 instances of pathogen detection, the initial site of recovery was the floor followed in a subset of patients by detection on sock bottoms, bedding, and high-touch surfaces. In simulations, wearing slippers over hospital socks dramatically reduced transfer of bacteriophage MS2 from the floor to hands and to high-touch surfaces.
Floors may be an underappreciated source of pathogen dissemination in healthcare facilities. Simple interventions such as having patients wear slippers could potentially reduce the risk for transfer of pathogens from floors to hands and high-touch surfaces.
Aggressive behavior in middle childhood can contribute to peer rejection, subsequently increasing risk for substance use in adolescence. However, the quality of peer relationships a child experiences can be associated with his or her genetic predisposition, a genotype–environment correlation (rGE). In addition, recent evidence indicates that psychosocial preventive interventions can buffer genetic predispositions for negative behavior. The current study examined associations between polygenic risk for aggression, aggressive behavior, and peer rejection from 8.5 to 10.5 years, and the subsequent influence of peer rejection on marijuana use in adolescence (n = 515; 256 control, 259 intervention). Associations were examined separately in control and intervention groups for children of families who participated in a randomized controlled trial of the family-based preventive intervention, the Family Check-Up . Using time-varying effect modeling (TVEM), polygenic risk for aggression was associated with peer rejection from approximately age 8.50 to 9.50 in the control group but no associations were present in the intervention group. Subsequent analyses showed peer rejection mediated the association between polygenic risk for aggression and adolescent marijuana use in the control group. The role of rGEs in middle childhood peer processes and implications for preventive intervention programs for adolescent substance use are discussed.
This is an epidemiological study of carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE) in Veterans’ Affairs medical centers (VAMCs). In 2017, almost 75% of VAMCs had at least 1 CRE case. We observed substantial geographic variability, with more cases in urban, complex facilities. This supports the benefit of tailoring infection control strategies to facility characteristics.
Synchrotron x-rays are a powerful tool to probe real-time changes in the microstructure of materials as they respond to an external stimulus, such as phase transformations that take place in response to a change in temperature. X-ray imaging techniques include radiography and tomography, and have been steadily improved over the last decades so that they can now resolve micrometer-scale or even finer structural changes in bulk specimens over time scales of a second or less. Under certain conditions, these imaging approaches can also give spatially resolved chemical information. In this article, we focus on the liquid to solid transformation of metallic alloys and the temporal and spatial resolution of the accompanying segregation of alloying elements. The solidification of alloys provides an excellent case study for x-ray imaging because it is usually accompanied by the progressive, preferential segregation of one or more of the alloying elements to either the solid or the liquid, and gives rise to surprisingly complex chemical segregation patterns. We describe chemical mapping investigations of binary and quasi-binary alloys using radiography and tomography, and recent developments in x-ray fluorescence imaging that offer the prospect of a more general, multielement mapping technique. Future developments for synchrotron-based chemical mapping are also considered.
Background: With the emergence of antibiotic resistant threats and the need for appropriate antibiotic use, laboratory microbiology information is important to guide clinical decision making in nursing homes, where access to such data can be limited. Susceptibility data are necessary to inform antibiotic selection and to monitor changes in resistance patterns over time. To contribute to existing data that describe antibiotic resistance among nursing home residents, we summarized antibiotic susceptibility data from organisms commonly isolated from urine cultures collected as part of the CDC multistate, Emerging Infections Program (EIP) nursing home prevalence survey. Methods: In 2017, urine culture and antibiotic susceptibility data for selected organisms were retrospectively collected from nursing home residents’ medical records by trained EIP staff. Urine culture results reported as negative (no growth) or contaminated were excluded. Susceptibility results were recorded as susceptible, non-susceptible (resistant or intermediate), or not tested. The pooled mean percentage tested and percentage non-susceptible were calculated for selected antibiotic agents and classes using available data. Susceptibility data were analyzed for organisms with ≥20 isolates. The definition for multidrug-resistance (MDR) was based on the CDC and European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control’s interim standard definitions. Data were analyzed using SAS v 9.4 software. Results: Among 161 participating nursing homes and 15,276 residents, 300 residents (2.0%) had documentation of a urine culture at the time of the survey, and 229 (76.3%) were positive. Escherichia coli, Proteus mirabilis, Klebsiella spp, and Enterococcus spp represented 73.0% of all urine isolates (N = 278). There were 215 (77.3%) isolates with reported susceptibility data (Fig. 1). Of these, data were analyzed for 187 (87.0%) (Fig. 2). All isolates tested for carbapenems were susceptible. Fluoroquinolone non-susceptibility was most prevalent among E. coli (42.9%) and P. mirabilis (55.9%). Among Klebsiella spp, the highest percentages of non-susceptibility were observed for extended-spectrum cephalosporins and folate pathway inhibitors (25.0% each). Glycopeptide non-susceptibility was 10.0% for Enterococcus spp. The percentage of isolates classified as MDR ranged from 10.1% for E. coli to 14.7% for P. mirabilis. Conclusions: Substantial levels of non-susceptibility were observed for nursing home residents’ urine isolates, with 10% to 56% reported as non-susceptible to the antibiotics assessed. Non-susceptibility was highest for fluoroquinolones, an antibiotic class commonly used in nursing homes, and ≥ 10% of selected isolates were MDR. Our findings reinforce the importance of nursing homes using susceptibility data from laboratory service providers to guide antibiotic prescribing and to monitor levels of resistance.
Background: Automated testing instruments (ATIs) are commonly used by clinical microbiology laboratories to perform antimicrobial susceptibility testing (AST), whereas public health laboratories may use established reference methods such as broth microdilution (BMD). We investigated discrepancies in carbapenem minimum inhibitory concentrations (MICs) among Enterobacteriaceae tested by clinical laboratory ATIs and by reference BMD at the CDC. Methods: During 2016–2018, we conducted laboratory- and population-based surveillance for carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE) through the CDC Emerging Infections Program (EIP) sites (10 sites by 2018). We defined an incident case as the first isolation of Enterobacter spp (E. cloacae complex or E. aerogenes), Escherichia coli, Klebsiella pneumoniae, K. oxytoca, or K. variicola resistant to doripenem, ertapenem, imipenem, or meropenem from normally sterile sites or urine identified from a resident of the EIP catchment area in a 30-day period. Cases had isolates that were determined to be carbapenem-resistant by clinical laboratory ATI MICs (MicroScan, BD Phoenix, or VITEK 2) or by other methods, using current Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute (CLSI) criteria. A convenience sample of these isolates was tested by reference BMD at the CDC according to CLSI guidelines. Results: Overall, 1,787 isolates from 112 clinical laboratories were tested by BMD at the CDC. Of these, clinical laboratory ATI MIC results were available for 1,638 (91.7%); 855 (52.2%) from 71 clinical laboratories did not confirm as CRE at the CDC. Nonconfirming isolates were tested on either a MicroScan (235 of 462; 50.9%), BD Phoenix (249 of 411; 60.6%), or VITEK 2 (371 of 765; 48.5%). Lack of confirmation was most common among E. coli (62.2% of E. coli isolates tested) and Enterobacter spp (61.4% of Enterobacter isolates tested) (Fig. 1A), and among isolates testing resistant to ertapenem by the clinical laboratory ATI (52.1%, Fig. 1B). Of the 1,388 isolates resistant to ertapenem in the clinical laboratory, 1,006 (72.5%) were resistant only to ertapenem. Of the 855 nonconfirming isolates, 638 (74.6%) were resistant only to ertapenem based on clinical laboratory ATI MICs. Conclusions: Nonconfirming isolates were widespread across laboratories and ATIs. Lack of confirmation was most common among E. coli and Enterobacter spp. Among nonconfirming isolates, most were resistant only to ertapenem. These findings may suggest that ATIs overcall resistance to ertapenem or that isolate transport and storage conditions affect ertapenem resistance. Further investigation into this lack of confirmation is needed, and CRE case identification in public health surveillance may need to account for this phenomenon.
Background: Antibiotics are among the most commonly prescribed drugs in nursing homes; urinary tract infections (UTIs) are a frequent indication. Although there is no gold standard for the diagnosis of UTIs, various criteria have been developed to inform and standardize nursing home prescribing decisions, with the goal of reducing unnecessary antibiotic prescribing. Using different published criteria designed to guide decisions on initiating treatment of UTIs (ie, symptomatic, catheter-associated, and uncomplicated cystitis), our objective was to assess the appropriateness of antibiotic prescribing among NH residents. Methods: In 2017, the CDC Emerging Infections Program (EIP) performed a prevalence survey of healthcare-associated infections and antibiotic use in 161 nursing homes from 10 states: California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Maryland, Minnesota, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, and Tennessee. EIP staff reviewed resident medical records to collect demographic and clinical information, infection signs, symptoms, and diagnostic testing documented on the day an antibiotic was initiated and 6 days prior. We applied 4 criteria to determine whether initiation of treatment for UTI was supported: (1) the Loeb minimum clinical criteria (Loeb); (2) the Suspected UTI Situation, Background, Assessment, and Recommendation tool (UTI SBAR tool); (3) adaptation of Infectious Diseases Society of America UTI treatment guidelines for nursing home residents (Crnich & Drinka); and (4) diagnostic criteria for uncomplicated cystitis (cystitis consensus) (Fig. 1). We calculated the percentage of residents for whom initiating UTI treatment was appropriate by these criteria. Results: Of 248 residents for whom UTI treatment was initiated in the nursing home, the median age was 79 years [IQR, 19], 63% were female, and 35% were admitted for postacute care. There was substantial variability in the percentage of residents with antibiotic initiation classified as appropriate by each of the criteria, ranging from 8% for the cystitis consensus, to 27% for Loeb, to 33% for the UTI SBAR tool, to 51% for Crnich and Drinka (Fig. 2). Conclusions: Appropriate initiation of UTI treatment among nursing home residents remained low regardless of criteria used. At best only half of antibiotic treatment met published prescribing criteria. Although insufficient documentation of infection signs, symptoms and testing may have contributed to the low percentages observed, adequate documentation in the medical record to support prescribing should be standard practice, as outlined in the CDC Core Elements of Antibiotic Stewardship for nursing homes. Standardized UTI prescribing criteria should be incorporated into nursing home stewardship activities to improve the assessment and documentation of symptomatic UTI and to reduce inappropriate antibiotic use.
La pandémie de la COVID-19 et l’état d’urgence publique qui en a découlé ont eu des répercussions significatives sur les personnes âgées au Canada et à travers le monde. Il est impératif que le domaine de la gérontologie réponde efficacement à cette situation. Dans la présente déclaration, les membres du conseil d’administration de l’Association canadienne de gérontologie/Canadian Association on Gerontology (ACG/CAG) et ceux du comité de rédaction de La Revue canadienne du vieillissement/Canadian Journal on Aging (RCV/CJA) reconnaissent la contribution des membres de l’ACG/CAG et des lecteurs de la RCV/CJA. Les auteurs exposent les voies complexes par lesquelles la COVID-19 affecte les personnes âgées, allant du niveau individuel au niveau populationnel. Ils préconisent une approche impliquant des équipes collaboratives pluridisciplinaires, regroupant divers champs de compétences, et différentes perspectives et méthodes d’évaluation de l’impact de la COVID-19.
The COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent state of public emergency have significantly affected older adults in Canada and worldwide. It is imperative that the gerontological response be efficient and effective. In this statement, the board members of the Canadian Association on Gerontology/L’Association canadienne de gérontologie (CAG/ACG) and the Canadian Journal on Aging/La revue canadienne du vieillissement (CJA/RCV) acknowledge the contributions of CAG/ACG members and CJA/RCV readers. We also profile the complex ways that COVID-19 is affecting older adults, from individual to population levels, and advocate for the adoption of multidisciplinary collaborative teams to bring together different perspectives, areas of expertise, and methods of evaluation in the COVID-19 response.
It is known that there exists a first-order sentence that holds in a finite group if and only if the group is soluble. Here it is shown that the corresponding statements with ‘solubility’ replaced by ‘nilpotence’ and ‘perfectness’, among others, are false.
These facts present difficulties for the study of pseudofinite groups. However, a very weak form of Frattini’s theorem on the nilpotence of the Frattini subgroup of a finite group is proved for pseudofinite groups.
There is a requirement in some beef markets to slaughter bulls at under 16 months of age. This requires high levels of concentrate feeding. Increasing the slaughter age of bulls to 19 months facilitates the inclusion of a grazing period, thereby decreasing the cost of production. Recent data indicate few quality differences in longissimus thoracis (LT) muscle from conventionally reared 16-month bulls and 19-month-old bulls that had a grazing period prior to finishing on concentrates. The aim of the present study was to expand this observation to additional commercially important muscles/cuts. The production systems selected were concentrates offered ad libitum and slaughter at under 16 months of age (16-C) or at 19 months of age (19-CC) to examine the effect of age per se, and the cheaper alternative for 19-month bulls described above (19-GC). The results indicate that muscles from 19-CC were more red, had more intramuscular fat and higher cook loss than those from 16-C. No differences in muscle objective texture or sensory texture and acceptability were found between treatments. The expected differences in composition and quality between the muscles were generally consistent across the production systems examined. Therefore, for the type of animal and range of ages investigated, the effect of the production system on LT quality was generally representative of the effect on the other muscles analysed. In addition, the data do not support the under 16- month age restriction, based on meat acceptability, in commercial suckler bull production.
Acute change in mental status (ACMS), defined by the Confusion Assessment Method, is used to identify infections in nursing home residents. A medical record review revealed that none of 15,276 residents had an ACMS documented. Using the revised McGeer criteria with a possible ACMS definition, we identified 296 residents and 21 additional infections. The use of a possible ACMS definition should be considered for retrospective nursing home infection surveillance.
It is now well established that CBT for chronic insomnia is as efficacious as hypnotic medication and is also likely to be better at maintaining improved sleep. Most studies have looked at the use of individual CBT; there have been only a few studies looking at CBT for insomnia given in a group format.
For nearly ten years the Bristol Insomnia Group has offered cognitive behavioural management and support for people with chronic insomnia.
The seven group sessions are led by up to three members of a team consisting of a doctor (sleep specialist), an occupational therapist and a research sleep scientist. Components of the group intervention include education about sleep science, information on insomnia medication, sleep hygiene, relaxation, and cognitive therapy. To assess efficacy participants complete sleep diaries, a quality of life scale (SF36) and the dysfunctional beliefs and attitudes scale (DBAS) pre and post group.
Sleep diaries (n=68) showed significant differences in Total Sleep Time (TST), Sleep Onset Latency (SOL) and Sleep Quality (SQ). Approximately half of the participants had clinically significant improvements in their TST (increased by 30 minutes) and about a third had a clinically significant decrease (by 30 minutes) in their SOL. SF36 scores showed statistically improved scores in all nine domains, DBAS scores showed statistically significant decreased scores post group.
These results demonstrate promising sleep parameter and quality of life improvements after attendance at the group. CBT for insomnia is a clinically and cost effective approach for the treatment of chronic insomnia.
The aim of this study was to audit the practise of Lithium monitoring on all patients over the age of 65 years, over a one-year period in North Tyneside General Hospital, against the recommended standards, and re-auditing the following year.
During the audit; data was collected from the medical notes of all patients prescribed Lithium, over 65 years in North Tyneside General Hospital. This was from January 2004 - January 2005. The standards used were the recommendations of The British National Formulary. The monitoring of urea, electrolytes, TSH and Lithium were recorded. The presence of an ECG, documentation of side effects, information leaflets’ distribution and patients lost to follow up were noted. Following the audit, recommendations were made and prescribing Consultants were informed. A re-audit was conducted on all patients on Lithium the next year from January 2006 - June 2006, using the same designed tool.
22 patient's notes were audited and 29 notes re-audited. 41% were males and 59% females in the audit, with similar distribution in the re-audit. 54% were between 65-75 years and 45% over the age of 75years in the audit. 41% and 59% respectively in the re-audit. Blood monitoring followed the standards in 86% in the audit and 95% in the re-audit. 32% had documentation of side effects in the audit, increasing to 72% in the re-audit. While 23% patients were lost to follow up in the audit, all were followed up in the re-audit.
The re-audit encouragingly showed significant improvement in practise.
Ecstasy (3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine, MDMA) is an amphetamine derivative that is used recreationally and is now being tested in clinical trials for treatment of posttraumatic stress disorder. Ecstasy can damage serotonin neurones in brain of experimental animals; however, relevance of these findings to the human is debated.
To measure by positron emission tomography (PET) levels of binding to the serotonin transporter (SERT), a marker of serotonin neurones, in brain of chronic ecstasy users and in matched controls.
An estimate of brain SERT levels was obtained, using the PET tracer 11C-DASB, in 50 chronic (confirmed by drug hair testing) ecstasy users (mean age, 26 years; mean duration of drug use, 3.9 years; median drug withdrawal time, 38 days) and 50 (drug-hair negative) control subjects (mean age 26 years).
SERT binding levels in the ecstasy group were significantly decreased by 22 to 46% in frontal, temporal, cingulate, insular and occipital cortices, and by 23% in hippocampus. However, concentrations were distinctly normal in the SERT-rich caudate, putamen, ventral striatum and thalamus.
Our imaging data suggest that cerebral cortical SERT concentration is below normal in some ecstasy users for at least one month after last use of the drug. However, it remains to be established whether low SERT might have preceded drug use, reflects actual loss of brain serotonin neurones, or is causally related to any functional impairment in the ecstasy users. (Supported by US NIH NIDA DA017301).
Pregabalin is indicated for the treatment of GAD in adults in Europe. The efficacy and safety of pregabalin for the treatment of adults and elderly patients with GAD has been demonstrated in 6 of 7 short-term clinical trials of 4 to 8 weeks.
To characterise the long-term efficacy and safety of pregabalin in subjects with GAD.
Subjects were randomised to double-blind treatment with either high-dose pregabalin (450-600 mg/d), low-dose pregabalin (150-300 mg/d), or lorazepam (3-4 mg/d) for 3 months. Treatment was extended with drug or blinded placebo for a further 3 months.
At 3 months, mean change from baseline Hamilton Anxiety Rating Scale (HAM-A) for pregabalin high- and low-dose, and for lorazepam ranged from -16.0 to -17.4. Mean change from baseline Clinical Global Impression-Severity (CGI-S) scores ranged from -2.1 to -2.3 and mean CGI-Improvement (CGI-I) scores were 1.9 for each active treatment group. At 6 months, improvement was retained for all 3 active drug groups, even when switched to placebo. HAM-A and CGI-S change from baseline scores ranged from -14.9 to -19.0 and -2.0 to -2.5, respectively. Mean CGI-I scores ranged from 1.5 to 2.3. The most frequently reported adverse events were insomnia, fatigue, dizziness, headache, and somnolence.
Efficacy was observed at 3 months, with maintained improvement in anxiety symptoms over 6 months of treatment. These results are consistent with previously reported efficacy and safety trials of shorter duration with pregabalin and lorazepam in subjects with GAD.
Psychiatry in the UK has longstanding recruitment problems (1). Evidence suggests the positive effects of clinical attachments on attitudes towards psychiatry are often transient (2). We therefore created the Psychiatry Early Experience Programme (PEEP) where year 1 medical students are paired with psychiatry trainees and shadow them at work. Students will ideally remain in PEEP throughout medical school, providing consistent exposure to psychiatry and a broad experience of its subspecialties.
1. To present PEEP
2. To assess:
a. Students’ baseline attitudes to psychiatry
b. PEEPs’ impact on students’ attitudes to psychiatry
A prospective survey based cohort study of King’s College London medical students.
PEEP started in 2013. In this cohort all students that signed up were accepted.
Students’ attitudes towards psychiatry were assessed on recruitment using the ATP-30 questionnaire (3), and will be re-assessed annually.
127 students were recruited. Attitudes were positive overall. 73% listed psychiatry in their top three specialities. 95.3% agreed or strongly agreed that ‘psychiatric illness deserves at least as much attention as physical illness.’ 84.3% disagreed or strongly disagreed that ‘at times it is hard to think of psychiatrists as equal to other doctors.’
Baseline attitudes to psychiatry were positive. By March 2015 we aim to collect and analyse data on students’ attitudes after one year in PEEP. Through on-ongoing analysis of this and future cohorts, we aim to assess the impact of PEEP on improving attitudes to psychiatry and whether this will ultimately improve recruitment.