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Background: The purpose of this study is to compare 1-year postoperative clinical outcomes between posterior instrumented fusion with (P/TLIF) and without (PLF) interbody fusion in patients with isthmic spondylolisthesis. Methods: This is a multi-centre retrospective study using the Canadian Spine Outcomes and Research Network. Adult patients who received surgical management for isthmic spondylolisthesis were included in this study. The primary outcome was change in Oswestry Disability Index at 1-year. Secondary outcomes were change in EQ-5D, SF-12 PCS, back pain, leg pain, estimated blood loss, length of surgery, length of stay, rate of transfusions and adverse events. Descriptive statistics, Student t-test, Chi-Squared test, and stepwise multivariable regression were used for analysis. Results: A total of 300 patients (252 P/TLIF, 48 PLF) were included in this study. The mean age was 50 years. The P/TLIF group had poorer baseline leg pain scores (t=2.02, p=0.01). There were no significant differences in primary and secondary outcomes between the two groups. Addition of interbody fusion was not a significant variable in the stepwise multivariable regression analysis. Conclusions: There were no significant differences in clinical outcomes at 1 year. Addition of interbody fusion was not associated with higher complication rates or length of stay.
Background: Cervical spondylotic myelopathy is a degenerative condition with a variable clinical course. We aim to quantify the sources of potential delay in management and understand how the timing of these events may affect quality of life measures. Methods: The Canadian Spine Outcomes Research Network Registry was used to identify patients older than 18 years of age and have received cervical decompression surgery from January 1, 2013 to March 1, 2016. The primary outcome was the Short Form-12 Physical Component Score at 12-month follow-up. Four time groups were identified: 1) duration of symptoms, 2) time awaiting surgical consult, 3) time spent monitoring symptoms, and 4) time awaiting surgery. -Multivariate regression was used for analysis. Results: A total of 208 patients were identified. The mean age was 59.5 years. 61.53% of patients had symptoms for >12 months at initial consult. Mean time awaiting surgical consult, monitoring symptoms, and awaiting surgery was 77.2, 60.9, and 46.9 days, respectively. Time awaiting surgery (β=-0.032, p=0.04) was a significant factor for change in Physical Component Score. Conclusions: We found time awaiting surgery to be a significant factor on PSC score at 12-month follow-up. Increased time awaiting surgery may result in negative impacts on quality of life outcomes.
In Hong Kong, universal varicella vaccination started in July 2014. Before this, children could receive varicella vaccine via the private market. We analysed the epidemiology of varicella and zoster before universal vaccination. We estimated varicella vaccination coverage through surveys in preschool children. We estimated the burden of varicella and zoster with varicella notifications from 1999/00 to 2013/14, Accident and Emergency Department (A&E) attendance and inpatient admissions to public hospitals from 2004/05 to 2013/14. We fitted a catalytic model to serological data on antibodies against varicella-zoster virus to estimate the force of infection. We found that varicella vaccination coverage gradually increased to about 50% before programme inception. In children younger than 5 years, the annual rate of varicella notifications, varicella admission and zoster A&E attendance generally declined. The annual notification, A&E attendance and hospitalisation rate of varicella and zoster generally increased for individuals between 10 and 59 years old. Varicella serology indicated an age shift during the study period towards a higher proportion of infections in slightly older individuals, but the change was most notable before vaccine licensure. In conclusion, we observed a shift in the burden of varicella to slightly older age groups with a corresponding increase in incidence but it cannot necessarily be attributed to private market vaccine coverage alone. Increasing varicella vaccination uptake in the private market might affect varicella transmission and epidemiology, but not to the level of interrupting transmission.
To characterize the major components of the contemporary Inuit diet and identify the primary sources of energy and essential nutrients.
Dietary data were derived from the 24 h recall collected by the Inuit Health Survey (IHS) from 2007 to 2008. The population proportion method was used to determine the percentage contribution of each group. Unique food items/preparations (ninety-three country foods and 1591 market foods) were classified into eight country food groups and forty-one market food groups. Nutrient composition of each food item was obtained from the Canadian Nutrient File.
Thirty-six communities across three Inuit regions of northern Canada.
A representative sample (n 2095) of non-pregnant Inuit adults (≥18 years), selected through stratified random sampling.
Despite their modest contribution to total energy intake (6·4–19·6 %, by region) country foods represented a major source of protein (23–52 %), Fe (28–54 %), niacin (24–52 %) and vitamins D (up to 73 %), B6 (18–55 %) and B12 (50–82 %). By contrast, the three most popular energy-yielding market foods (i.e. sweetened beverages, added sugar and bread) collectively contributed approximately 20 % of total energy, while contributing minimally to most micronutrients. A notable exception was the contribution of these foods to Ca (13–21 %) and vitamins E (17–35 %) and C (as much as 50 %). Solid fruits were consumed by less than 25 % of participants while vegetables were reported by 38–59 % of respondents.
Country foods remain a critical dimension of the contemporary Inuit diet.
Schizotypal traits are considered a phenotypic-indicator of schizotypy, a latent personality organization reflecting a putative liability for psychosis. To date, no previous study has examined the comparability of factorial structures across samples originating from different countries and cultures. The main goal was to evaluate the factorial structure and reliability of the Schizotypal Personality Questionnaire (SPQ) scores by amalgamating data from studies conducted in 12 countries and across 21 sites.
The overall sample consisted of 27 001 participants (37.5% males, n = 4251 drawn from the general population). The mean age was 22.12 years (s.d. = 6.28, range 16–55 years). The SPQ was used. Confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) and Multilevel CFA (ML-CFA) were used to evaluate the factor structure underlying the SPQ scores.
At the SPQ item level, the nine factor and second-order factor models showed adequate goodness-of-fit. At the SPQ subscale level, three- and four-factor models displayed better goodness-of-fit indices than other CFA models. ML-CFA showed that the intraclass correlation coefficients values were lower than 0.106. The three-factor model showed adequate goodness of fit indices in multilevel analysis. The ordinal α coefficients were high, ranging from 0.73 to 0.94 across individual samples, and from 0.84 to 0.91 for the combined sample.
The results are consistent with the conceptual notion that schizotypal personality is a multifaceted construct and support the validity and utility of SPQ in cross-cultural research. We discuss theoretical and clinical implications of our results for diagnostic systems, psychosis models and cross-national mental health strategies.
Background: Oligodendroglioma (ODG), a molecularly defined subtype of glioma, is a treatment responsive, slow growing tumour strongly associated with IDH mutation and 1p19q co-deletion. Mutations in Capicua (CIC), located on chromosome 19q, have been found in up to 70% of IDH mutated, 1p19q co-deleted ODGs; suggesting that loss or altered function of CIC may be crucially associated with ODG’s unique biology. CIC and ATXN1L have previously been implicated in neurodegeneration, however, this interaction has not been studied in cancer. Methods: Transcriptome profiling of CIC knockout HEK293 cell lines generated using CRISPR was performed using microarray. CIC and ATXN1L interaction was confirmed using immunoprecipitation and immunofluorescence. Transcript and protein changes of CIC targets were tested using RT-qPCR and Western blot following ATXN1L siRNA knockdown. Results: Transcriptomic profiling of CIC knockout cell lines resulted in a list of candidate CIC target genes validated against clinical samples. Immunoprecipitation and immunofluorescence confirmed CIC and ATXN1L interaction. Derepression of candidate CIC targets at transcript and protein levels was seen upon siRNA knockdown of ATXN1L. Conclusions: The interaction between CIC and ATXN1L is necessary for the repression of CIC target genes, including known oncogenes. Further research into the relationship between CIC and ATXN1L may lead potentially novel avenues of therapeutic approaches for less favorable gliomas.
Introduction: Developing structured online educational curricula that meet learner needs is challenging. Thrombosis and bleeding are areas of innovation and change in emergency medicine. We aimed to determine the learning needs of the Free Open Access Medical education (FOAM) community with the subsequent goal of developing structured curricula to meet them. Methods: A Massive Online Needs Assessment (MONA) was conducted to determine the perceived and unperceived educational needs in thrombosis and bleeding. The survey was designed by a multidisciplinary team of experts and was open from September 20 to December 10, 2016. The survey requested limited demographic information and contained questions to identify topics of interest. Respondents’ baseline knowledge and unperceived needs were assessed using 5 case scenarios containing 3 questions each. Knowledge gaps were defined a priori as topics where <50% of participants answered correctly. Results: We received 198 complete responses by staff physicians (n=109), residents (n=46), medical students (n=29) and allied health professionals (n=14) from 20 countries. 116/198 responses were from people working in emergency medicine. Topics of interest to participants included choice of anticoagulants, interruption of anticoagulation, management of bleeding and monitoring anticoagulation. Knowledge gaps were identified in 4 main areas including interruption of anticoagulation, management of bleeding (including reversal of anticoagulation and massive transfusion), inherited thrombophilia, and screening for malignancy in acute thrombosis. Conclusion: We have identified six priority topics to cover in our future online Thrombosis and Bleeding curriculum by surveying the online medical community. Although perceived and unperceived needs showed high congruence, two priority topics were only identified by assessing unperceived needs.
Introduction/Innovation Concept: The boom in online educational resources for medical education over the past decade has changed how physicians learn and keep up to date with new literature. While nearly all emergency medicine residents use online resources, few of these resources were designed to target knowledge gaps. Novel methods are required to identify learning needs to allow the targeted development of learner-centered curricula. Methods: A multidisciplinary team attempted to determine the feasibility of conducting a Massive Online Needs Assessment (MONA) to assess the perceived and unperceived educational needs in thrombosis and bleeding. An open, online survey was launched via Google Forms and disseminated using the online educational resource CanadiEM.org and social media platforms Twitter and Facebook with the goal of reaching participants of the Free Open Access Medical education (FOAM) community. Curriculum, Tool, or Material: The survey was designed to identify knowledge gaps and contained demographic, free text, and multiple choice questions. It took individuals approximately 30 minutes to complete and was incentivized with entry into a draw for one of four $250 Amazon Gift cards. Feasibility was defined a priori as 150 responses from at least 4 specialties in 4 or more countries. This sample was deemed the minimum number required to identify knowledge gaps (defined as <50% correct answers). The survey was open from September 20 to December 10, 2016. We received 198 complete responses from 20 countries. Respondents included staff physicians (n=109), residents (n=46), medical students (n=29), nurses (n=8), paramedics (n=4), a pharmacist (n=1) and a physician assistant (n=1). The survey entry page hosted on CanadiEM.org received page views from 866 unique IP addresses. As such, a conservative approximation of the completion rate per unique viewer was 22% (198/866). Conclusion: It is feasible to use a MONA to collect data on the perceived and unperceived needs of an online community. Such needs assessments could be used to make online resources more learner-centered.
Faster eating rates are associated with increased energy intake, but little is known about the relationship between children’s eating rate, food intake and adiposity. We examined whether children who eat faster consume more energy and whether this is associated with higher weight status and adiposity. We hypothesised that eating rate mediates the relationship between child weight and ad libitum energy intake. Children (n 386) from the Growing Up in Singapore Towards Healthy Outcomes cohort participated in a video-recorded ad libitum lunch at 4·5 years to measure acute energy intake. Videos were coded for three eating-behaviours (bites, chews and swallows) to derive a measure of eating rate (g/min). BMI and anthropometric indices of adiposity were measured. A subset of children underwent MRI scanning (n 153) to measure abdominal subcutaneous and visceral adiposity. Children above/below the median eating rate were categorised as slower and faster eaters, and compared across body composition measures. There was a strong positive relationship between eating rate and energy intake (r 0·61, P<0·001) and a positive linear relationship between eating rate and children’s BMI status. Faster eaters consumed 75 % more energy content than slower eating children (Δ548 kJ (Δ131 kcal); 95 % CI 107·6, 154·4, P<0·001), and had higher whole-body (P<0·05) and subcutaneous abdominal adiposity (Δ118·3 cc; 95 % CI 24·0, 212·7, P=0·014). Mediation analysis showed that eating rate mediates the link between child weight and energy intake during a meal (b 13·59; 95 % CI 7·48, 21·83). Children who ate faster had higher energy intake, and this was associated with increased BMI z-score and adiposity.
Better understanding of the complex interplay among key determinants of functional outcome is crucial to promoting recovery in psychotic disorders. However, this is understudied in the early course of illness. We aimed to examine the relationships among negative symptoms, neurocognition, general self-efficacy and global functioning in first-episode psychosis (FEP) patients using structural equation modeling (SEM).
Three hundred and twenty-one Chinese patients aged 26–55 years presenting with FEP to an early intervention program in Hong Kong were recruited. Assessments encompassing symptom profiles, functioning, perceived general self-efficacy and a battery of neurocognitive tests were conducted. Negative symptom measurement was subdivided into amotivation and diminished expression (DE) domain scores based on the ratings in the Scale for the Assessment of Negative Symptoms.
An initial SEM model showed no significant association between functioning and DE which was removed from further analysis. A final trimmed model yielded very good model fit (χ2 = 15.48, p = 0.63; comparative fit index = 1.00; root mean square error of approximation <0.001) and demonstrated that amotivation, neurocognition and general self-efficacy had a direct effect on global functioning. Amotivation was also found to mediate a significant indirect effect of neurocognition and general self-efficacy on functioning. Neurocognition was not significantly related to general self-efficacy.
Our results indicate a critical intermediary role of amotivation in linking neurocognitive impairment to functioning in FEP. General self-efficacy may represent a promising treatment target for improvement of motivational deficits and functional outcome in the early illness stage.
Background: The ketogenic diet (KD) is used to treat severe childhood-onset epileptic encephalopathies, such as Infantile Spasms (IS). Unfortunately, limited resources for KD initiation result in treatment delays. We ask if earlier KD treatment of early-onset drug-resistant epilepsy results in better seizure outcomes. Methods: Children who started KD before age 4 years between 2000-present at SickKids Hospital were identified. Six-month seizure outcome was calculated as percent of pre-diet baseline seizure frequency (BSF). Results: 67 children were identified. 30 (44.8%) started KD <2 years old, 37 (55.2%) started KD 2-4 years old. Among <2 years old group, 83.3% achieved 50% reduction in BSF and 36.7% achieved 90% reduction. Among 2-4 year old group, 62.2% achieved 50% reduction in BSF and 24.3% achieved 90% reduction. 38 children had a history of IS; 17 with IS at diet initiation and 21 with past history of IS. 41.2% of the spasms cohort achieved 90% reduction in BSF, compared to 23.8% of the post-spasms cohort. Conclusions: KD was more effective when started before age 2 years than 2-4 years, and more effective in children with IS than in children with past history of IS. A rapid protocol for KD initiation in young infants and children may improve long-term outcomes
During 1990 we surveyed the southern sky using a multi-beam receiver at frequencies of 4850 and 843 MHz. The half-power beamwidths were 4 and 25 arcmin respectively. The finished surveys cover the declination range between +10 and −90 degrees declination, essentially complete in right ascension, an area of 7.30 steradians. Preliminary analysis of the 4850 MHz data indicates that we will achieve a five sigma flux density limit of about 30 mJy. We estimate that we will find between 80 000 and 90 000 new sources above this limit. This is a revised version of the paper presented at the Regional Meeting by the first four authors; the surveys now have been completed.
To examine the unique neuropsychological presentation in adults with high functioning autism spectrum disorders (HF-ASD) by comparison with adults with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
Adults with ASD referred to a specialty clinic (n=26) were compared to two non-ASD groups with (n=52) and without (n=52) ADHD of similar age and sex.
No differences in IQ were found. Subjects with HF-ASD were significantly more impaired than both comparison groups in processing speed, cognitive flexibility and sight words. Subjects with HF-ASD were more impaired than controls in working memory, but not the ADHD group.
These findings suggest that there may be specific neuropsychological correlates of HF-ASD differing from ADHD that could have significant implications for identifying individuals at risk for ASD.
Currently the improvement of stand-alone PV power systems characteristics, including increase of their service life is the actual direction of ground solar power development. The analysis of stand-alone PV power systems efficiency with the use of ultra capacitors is carried out by the means of mathematical modeling. The obtained data shows that the use of ultra capacitors as additional short-term energy storage devices in stand-alone PV power systems contributes to considerable increase of storage batteries lifetime and the total system operating time.
3D integration enabled by through-silicon-via (TSV) allows continued performance enhancement and power reduction for semiconductor devices, even without further scaling. For TSV wafers with all Applied Materials unit processes, we evaluate the integrity of oxide liner and copper barrier by capacitance-voltage (C-V) and current-voltage (I-V) measurements, from which oxide capacitance, minimum TSV capacitance, and leakage current are extracted. The capacitance values match well with model predictions. The leakage data also demonstrate good wafer-scale uniformity. The liner and barrier quality are further verified with microanalysis techniques.