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Objectives: Central-line–associated bloodstream infection (CLABSI) has been the leading cause of healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) in the intensive care unit (ICU) setting. Previous studies have shown that a care bundle is effective in reducing CLABSI rates; however, the data on long-term sustainability and cost savings of bundled care are limited. Methods: From January 2011 to December 2020, a prospective surveillance was performed to monitor CLABSI at a university hospital in northern Taiwan. To reduce the CLABSI rate, a hospital-wide bundled care program for CLABSI prevention was implemented in 2013. We evaluated the long-term effect of the care bundle on CLABSI incidence and length of stay in the ICU. Results: During the study period, the overall CLABSI incidence decreased from 8.22 per 1,000 catheter days before the care bundle was implemented to 6.33 per 1,000 catheter days in 2020 (P for trend <.01). The most common pathogens causing CLABSI were gut organisms (1,420 of 2,363, 60.1%), followed by environmental organisms (734 of 2,363, 31.1%) and skin organisms (177 of 2,363, 7.5%). The decreasing trend was statistically significant in the incidence of CLABSI caused by skin organisms (P for trend < .01), but not in the incidence of CLABSI caused by environmental organisms (P for trend = .86) or gut organisms (P for trend = .06). In the multivariable analysis, implementation of this care bundle was independently associated with a decrease in the CLABSI rate (RR, 0.77; 95% CI, 0.66–0.88). Compared with patients without CLABSI, patients with CLABSI had a longer average ICU length of stay (27 vs 17 days). Conclusions: A sustainable reduction in the incidence of CLABSI caused by common commensals could be achieved through a cost-saving bundled care program.
Based on a real-world collaboration with innovators in applying early health economic modeling, we aimed to offer practical steps that health technology assessment (HTA) researchers and innovators can follow and promote the usage of early HTA among research and development (R&D) communities.
The HTA researcher was approached by the innovator to carry out an early HTA ahead of the first clinical trial of the technology, a soft robotic sock for poststroke patients. Early health economic modeling was selected to understand the potential value of the technology and to help uncover the information gap. Threshold analysis was used to identify the target product profiles. Value-of-information analysis was conducted to understand the uncertainties and the need for further research.
Based on the expected price and clinical effectiveness by the innovator, the new technology was found to be cost-saving compared to the current practice. Risk reduction in deep vein thrombosis and ankle contracture, the incidence rate of ankle contracture, the compliance rate of the new technology, and utility scores were found to have high impacts on the value-for-money of the new technology. The value of information was low if the new technology can achieve the expected clinical effectiveness. A list of parameters was recommended for data collection in the impending clinical trial.
This work, based on a real-world collaboration, has illustrated that early health economic modeling can inform medical innovation development. We provided practical steps in order to achieve more efficient R&D investment in medical innovation moving forward.
We study how channel width variations influence the dynamics of free-surface granular flows. For this purpose, we extend a continuum model framework to granular flows passing through channels that narrow or widen. Our theory uses a linearized approximation to an established dense granular flow rheology and a Coulomb friction law to model interaction between flow and sidewalls. We test the theoretical predictions using two novel 40 cm-diameter drums (convex and concave) filled halfway with 2 mm diameter particles rotated at rates in which the shear layer remains shallow and dense. We apply particle tracking velocimetry to enable quantitative comparisons between experimental data and theoretical predictions. We find that our experimental kinematics and energy profiles largely agree with the theoretical predictions. In general, flows through narrowing channels are faster and deeper than flows through widening channels. The influence of width variations grows with increasing flow speed, and the form of the rate dependence changes fundamentally as the regime changes from one in which kinetic energy is dissipated locally to one in which it is advected downstream. For both regimes, theoretical scaling analysis leads us to experimentally validated power laws, in which the exponent depends on the flow regime, and the multiplicative coefficient depends on channel geometry alone. Finally, we discuss how the differences between theoretical predictions and experimental data may be useful for improving our understanding of flows through non-uniform channels.
Bipolar disorder is a chronic mental disorder related to cognitive deficits. Low serum vitamin D levels are significantly associated with compromised cognition in neuropsychiatric disorders. Although patients with bipolar disorder frequently exhibit hypovitaminosis D, the association between vitamin D and cognition in bipolar disorder, and their neuroaxonal integrity, is unclear.
To investigate the interaction effects between vitamin D and neurofilament light chain (NfL) levels on cognitive domains in bipolar disorder.
Serum vitamin D and NfL levels were determined in 100 euthymic patients with bipolar disorder in a cross-sectional study. Cognitive function was measured with the Brief Assessment of Cognition in Affective Disorders. We stratified by age groups and used general linear models to identify associations between vitamin D and NfL levels and their interaction effects on cognitive domains.
The mean vitamin D and NfL levels were 16.46 ng/nL and 11.10 pg/mL, respectively; 72% of patients were vitamin D deficient. In the older group, more frequent hospital admissions and lower physical activity were identified in the group with versus without vitamin D deficiency. The age-modified interaction effect of vitamin D and NfL was associated with composite neurocognitive scores and verbal fluency in both age groups, and with processing speed domain in the younger group.
We observed a high vitamin D deficiency prevalence in bipolar disorder. We identified the interaction of vitamin D and NfL on cognitive domains, and the effect was modified by age. Longitudinal or randomised controlled studies enrolling patients with various illness durations and mood statuses are required to validate our findings.
Pharmacological treatment of major depressive disorder is often inefficient, and multiple strategies are used for inadequate response to antidepressants. Second-generation antipsychotics are used as augmentation measures in clinical practice; evidence of their efficacy and acceptability is insufficient, and it remains confusing as to which drug should be selected first. In this systematic review and network meta-analysis, we included randomised controlled trials of second-generation antipsychotics used as adjunctive treatment in patients with suboptimal responses. Outcome measures were efficacy (response and remission) and acceptability (dropout due to any reason and adverse events). Thirty-three trials comprising 10 602 participants were included. Regarding efficacy, response rates indicated that all antipsychotics except for ziprasidone were more efficacious than the placebo, with the odds ratios (ORs) ranging from 1.34 for olanzapine and cariprazine [95% credible interval (CrI) 1.04–1.73 and 1.07–1.67, respectively] to 2.17 for risperidone (95% CrI 1.38–3.42). When considering remission, cariprazine was not effective (OR 1.21, 95% CrI 0.96–1.54). For acceptability, quetiapine (OR 0.68, 95% CrI 0.50–0.91), brexpiprazole (OR 0.69, 95% CrI 0.55–0.86), and cariprazine (OR 0.61, 95% CrI 0.46–0.82) were worse than the placebo. With regards to tolerability, only olanzapine (OR 0.51, 95% CrI 0.25–1.07) and risperidone (OR 0.48, 95% CrI 0.10–2.21) showed no significant differences compared with placebo. The administration of adjunctive antipsychotics is associated with high effectiveness and low acceptability. Risperidone and aripiprazole are more efficacious and accepted than other atypical antipsychotics.
The linguistic study of Chinese, with its rich morphological, syntactic and prosodic/tonal structures, its complex writing system, and its diverse socio-historical background, is already a long-established and vast research area. With contributions from internationally renowned experts in the field, this Handbook provides a state-of-the-art survey of the central issues in Chinese linguistics. Chapters are divided into four thematic areas: writing systems and the neuro-cognitive processing of Chinese, morpho-lexical structures, phonetic and phonological characteristics, and issues in syntax, semantics, pragmatics, and discourse. By following a context-driven approach, it shows how theoretical issues in Chinese linguistics can be resolved with empirical evidence and argumentation, and provides a range of different perspectives. Its dialectical design sets a state-of-the-art benchmark for research in a wide range of interdisciplinary and cross-lingual studies involving the Chinese language. It is an essential resource for students and researchers wishing to explore the fascinating field of Chinese linguistics.