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Introduction: Abdominal pain is one of the most frequent reasons for an emergency department (ED) visit. Most cases are functional and no therapy has proven effective. Our objective was to determine if hyoscine butylbromide (HBB) (BuscopanTM) is effective for children who present to the ED with functional abdominal pain. Methods: We conducted a randomized, blinded, superiority trial comparing HBB 10 mg plus acetaminophen placebo to oral acetaminophen 15 mg/kg (max 975 mg) plus HBB placebo using a double-dummy approach. We included children 8-17 years presenting to the ED at London Health Sciences Centre with colicky abdominal pain rated >40 mm on a 100 mm visual analog scale (VAS). The primary outcome was VAS pain score at 80 minutes post-administration. Secondary outcomes included adverse effects; caregiver satisfaction with pain management using a five-item Likert scale; recidivism and missed surgical diagnoses within 24-hours of discharge. Analysis was based on intention to treat. Results: We analyzed 225 participants (112 acetaminophen; 113 HBB). The mean (SD) age was 12.4 (3.0) years and 148/225 (65.8%) were females. Prior to enrollment, the median (IQR) duration of pain prior was 2 (4.5) hours and analgesia was provided to 101/225 (44.9%) of participants. The mean (SD) pre-intervention pain scores in the acetaminophen and HBB groups were 62.7 (15.9) mm and 60.3 (17.3) mm, respectively. At 80 minutes, the mean (SD) pain scores in the acetaminophen and HBB groups were 30.1 (28.8) mm and 29.4 (26.4) mm, respectively and there were no significant differences adjusting for pre-intervention scores (p = 0.96). The median (IQR) caregiver satisfaction was high in the acetaminophen [5 (2)] and HBB [5 (1)] groups (p = 0.79). The median (IQR) length of stay between acetaminophen [235 (101)] and HBB [234 (103)] was not significantly different (p = 0.53). The proportion of participants with a return visit for abdominal pain was 4/112 (3.5%) in the acetaminophen group and 6/113 (5.3%) in the HBB group. The most common adverse effect was nausea (9% in each group) and there were no significant differences in adverse effects between acetaminophen (26/112, 23.2%) and HBB (31/113, 27.4%) (p = 0.52). There were no missed surgical diagnoses. Conclusion: For children with presumed functional abdominal pain who present to the ED, both acetaminophen and HBB produce a clinically important (VAS < 30 mm) reduction in pain and should be routinely considered in this clinical setting.
Externalizing disorders are known to be partly heritable, but the biological pathways linking genetic risk to the manifestation of these costly behaviors remain under investigation. This study sought to identify neural phenotypes associated with genomic vulnerability for externalizing disorders.
One-hundred fifty-five White, non-Hispanic veterans were genotyped using a genome-wide array and underwent resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging. Genetic susceptibility was assessed using an independently developed polygenic score (PS) for externalizing, and functional neural networks were identified using graph theory based network analysis. Tasks of inhibitory control and psychiatric diagnosis (alcohol/substance use disorders) were used to measure externalizing phenotypes.
A polygenic externalizing disorder score (PS) predicted connectivity in a brain circuit (10 nodes, nine links) centered on left amygdala that included several cortical [bilateral inferior frontal gyrus (IFG) pars triangularis, left rostral anterior cingulate cortex (rACC)] and subcortical (bilateral amygdala, hippocampus, and striatum) regions. Directional analyses revealed that bilateral amygdala influenced left prefrontal cortex (IFG) in participants scoring higher on the externalizing PS, whereas the opposite direction of influence was observed for those scoring lower on the PS. Polygenic variation was also associated with higher Participation Coefficient for bilateral amygdala and left rACC, suggesting that genes related to externalizing modulated the extent to which these nodes functioned as communication hubs.
Findings suggest that externalizing polygenic risk is associated with disrupted connectivity in a neural network implicated in emotion regulation, impulse control, and reinforcement learning. Results provide evidence that this network represents a genetically associated neurobiological vulnerability for externalizing disorders.
Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and stress/trauma exposure are cross-sectionally associated with advanced DNA methylation age relative to chronological age. However, longitudinal inquiry and examination of associations between advanced DNA methylation age and a broader range of psychiatric disorders is lacking. The aim of this study was to examine if PTSD, depression, generalized anxiety, and alcohol-use disorders predicted acceleration of DNA methylation age over time (i.e. an increasing pace, or rate of advancement, of the epigenetic clock).
Genome-wide DNA methylation and a comprehensive set of psychiatric symptoms and diagnoses were assessed in 179 Iraq/Afghanistan war veterans who completed two assessments over the course of approximately 2 years. Two DNA methylation age indices (Horvath and Hannum), each a weighted index of an array of genome-wide DNA methylation probes, were quantified. The pace of the epigenetic clock was operationalized as change in DNA methylation age as a function of time between assessments.
Analyses revealed that alcohol-use disorders (p = 0.001) and PTSD avoidance and numbing symptoms (p = 0.02) at Time 1 were associated with an increasing pace of the epigenetic clock over time, per the Horvath (but not the Hannum) index of cellular aging.
This is the first study to suggest that posttraumatic psychopathology is longitudinally associated with a quickened pace of the epigenetic clock. Results raise the possibility that accelerated cellular aging is a common biological consequence of stress-related psychopathology, which carries implications for identifying mechanisms of stress-related cellular aging and developing interventions to slow its pace.
Previous studies have identified a close relationship between the monospecific Masonhalea richardsonii and Tuckermannopsis inermis. However, formal taxonomic changes were postponed until existing sequence data could be confirmed. Here we validate these data and discuss the transfer of T. inermis to Masonhalea (made by Lumbsch et al. in Thell & Moberg 2011), consider the morphological, anatomical and biogeographic similarities and differences between these two taxa. The two Masonhalea species both produce lateral apothecia, marginal pycnidia, a layer of cortical tissue beneath the pycnidial wall and bacillariform conidia.
To determine whether an educational strategy using a handheld, multimedia computer (iPod™) is practical and sustainable for routine office-based patient educational tasks.
With the limited amount of time allotted to the office encounter and the growing number of patient educational tasks, new strategies are needed to improve the efficiency of patient education. Education of patients anticoagulated with warfarin is considered critical to preventing complications. Despite the dangers associated with the use of warfarin, educational practices are variable and often haphazard
During a four-month period, we examined the implementation of a three-part series of iPod™-based patient educational modules delivered to anticoagulated patients at the time of routine INR (International Normalized Ratio) blood tests for outpatients on the anticoagulation registry at an urban community health center.
A total of 141 computer module presentations were delivered to 91 patients during the four-month period. In all, 44 patients on the registry had no INR checkups, and thus no opportunity to view the modules, and 32 patients had at least three INR checkups but no modules were documented. Of the 130 patients with at least one INR performed during the study period, 22 (16.9%) patients completed all three modules, 91 (70.0%) patients received at least one module, and nine (7.6%) patients refused to view at least one module. Neither of the two handheld computers was lost or stolen, and no physician time was used in this routine educational activity. Patients reported that the audio and visual quality was very good, (9.0/10); the educational experience of the patient was helpful (7.4/10) compared with the patient's previous warfarin education (6.3/10), and the computer strategy extended the INR visit duration by 1–5 min at most.
The computer-assisted patient educational strategy was well received by patients, and uptake of the intervention by the clinic was successful and durable. The iPod™strategy standardized the educational message, improved clinic efficiency, and helped this busy clinic meet its educational goals for patient education.
More than 60% of newborns with severe congenital cardiac disease develop perioperative brain injuries. Known risk factors include: pre-operative hypoxemia, cardiopulmonary bypass characteristics, and post-operative hypotension. Infection is an established risk factor for white matter injury in premature newborns. In this study, we examined term infants with congenital cardiac disease requiring surgical repair to determine whether infection is associated with white matter injury. Acquired infection was specified by site – bloodstream, pneumonia, or surgical site infection – according to strict definitions. Infection was present in 23 of 127 infants. Pre- and post-operative imaging was evaluated for acquired injury by a paediatric neuroradiologist. Overall, there was no difference in newly acquired post-operative white matter injury in infants with infection (30%), compared to those without (31%). When stratified by anatomy, infants with transposition of the great arteries, and bloodstream infection had an estimated doubling of risk of white matter injury that was not significant, whereas those with single ventricle anatomy had no apparent added risk. When considering only infants without stroke, the estimated association was higher, and became significant after adjusting for duration of inotrope therapy. In this study, nosocomial infection was not associated with white matter injury. Nonetheless, when controlling for risk factors, there was an association between bloodstream infection and white matter injury in selected sub-populations. Infection prevention may have the potential to mitigate long-term neurologic impairment as a consequence of white matter injury, which underscores the importance of attention to infection control for these patients.
n-3 PUFA have well-recognised cardio-beneficial effects. In contrast, premature coronary deaths are associated with consumption of high levels of trans-fatty acids (TFA). The present study determined the effects of n-3 PUFA and TFA on sudden cardiac death and vascular inflammation. A rat coronary ligation model was used to study the effect of fatty acids on sudden cardiac death, whereas a mouse femoral artery ligation model was used to study compensatory vascular remodelling. Human aortic endothelial cells (HAEC) were utilised for the in vitro studies to investigate expression of inflammatory molecules. Feeding animals an n-3 PUFA-enriched diet caused a sevenfold increase in plasma n-3 PUFA compared with that of the TFA-fed group, whereas a TFA-enriched diet caused a 2·5-fold increase in plasma TFA compared with the n-3 PUFA group. Animals on a TFA diet had a lower survival rate due to sudden cardiac death and exhibited variable degrees of aortic atherosclerotic lesions. Animals on a TFA diet had diminished hindlimb collateral growth, whereas animals on the n-3 PUFA diet exhibited extensive collateral growth about ligated regions. HAEC treated with TFA (trans-18 : 2) showed significantly increased expression of intracellular adhesion molecule-1 and nitrosylation of cellular proteins than those treated with DHA (n-3 PUFA, 22 : 6). The in vivo study demonstrates that, in contrast to TFA, n-3 PUFA improve animal survival after myocardial infarction, prevent development of atherosclerotic lesions and stimulate compensatory vascular remodelling. The in vitro study demonstrates that TFA induce, while n-3 PUFA prevent, vascular inflammation.