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Cellulitis is a common infection of the skin and soft tissue. Susceptibility to cellulitis is related to microorganism virulence, the host immunity status and environmental factors. This retrospective study from 2001 to 2013 investigated relationships between the monthly incidence rate of cellulitis and meteorological factors using data from the Taiwanese Health Insurance Dataset and the Taiwanese Central Weather Bureau. Meteorological data included temperature, hours of sunshine, relative humidity, total rainfall and total number of rainy days. In otal, 195 841 patients were diagnosed with cellulitis and the incidence rate was strongly correlated with temperature (γS = 0.84, P < 0.001), total sunshine hours (γS = 0.65, P < 0.001) and total rainfall (γS = 0.53, P < 0.001). The incidence rate of cellulitis increased by 3.47/100 000 cases for every 1° elevation in environmental temperature. Our results may assist clinicians in educating the public of the increased risk of cellulitis during warm seasons and possible predisposing environmental factors for infection.
Voriconazole is a broad-spectrum azole exhibiting strong anti-Aspergillus activity and good long-term tolerance. However, the evidence for voriconazole efficacy against refractory Aspergillus otomycosis is weak.
We reviewed the medical records of patients with Aspergillus otomycosis treated with voriconazole from January 2008 to June 2012 in a Taiwanese regional hospital. Demographic data and information regarding underlying diseases, clinical features, treatment and outcome were assessed.
In total, 14 cases of Aspergillus otomycosis were treated with voriconazole, including 5 patients with Aspergillus invasive otitis externa. All patients had failed to respond to local treatment, antibiotics or topical agents. One case was lost to follow up. The symptoms of two patients recurred after voriconazole treatment: one patient received a second 12-week course of voriconazole and was cured; and symptoms of the other patient recurred after a second 12-week course of voriconazole, leading to surgical debridement. The remaining 11 patients were cured by voriconazole treatment without extensive surgical debridement.
This study demonstrates that voriconazole can be a very effective and convenient therapeutic option for the management of refractory Aspergillus otomycosis.
In this work, we examined the Ge incorporation and the accompanied defect formation during PECVD deposition of hydrogenated amorphous silicon-germanium alloys (a-Si1-xGex:H). In particular, we studied the effect of hydrogen on film growth, defect formation, Ge and Si incorporation efficiencies, and the H-bonding configuration. Our results indicate that hydrogen has a strong effect on improving the a-Si1-xGex:H film quality and the Ge incorporation in a-Si1-xGex:H. With adequate hydrogen dilution, the a-Si1-xGex:H thin-film quality significantly improved. However, excessive hydrogen dilution degraded the film properties. A number of analytical tools were employed, including FTIR, XPS, UV-Visible spectroscopy, photoconductivity, etc. The a-Si1-xGex:H material having 24% Ge content and a bangap of 1.61ev produced the solar cell with a conversion efficiency of 7.07%.
The crystallinity of the hydrogenated microcrystalline silicon (μc-Si:H) film was known to influence the solar cell efficiency greatly. Also hydrogen was found to play a critical role in controlling the crystallinity. Instead of employing conventional plasma deposition techniques, this work focused on using catalytic chemical vapor deposition (Cat-CVD) to study the effect of hydrogen dilution and the filament-to-substrate distance on the crystallinity, deposition rate, microstructure factor and electrical property of the μc-Si:H film. We found that the substrate material and structure can affect the crystallinity of the μc-Si:H film and the incubation effect. Comparing bare glass, TCO-coated glass, a-Si:H-coated glass and μc-Si:H-coated glass, the microcrystalline phase grows the fastest onto μc-Si:H surface, but the slowest onto a-Si:H surface. Surprisingly, the template effect lasted for more than a thousand atomic layers of silicon.
In this study, the mechanical properties of human dental structures have been investigated by using instrumented nanoindentation. Immersion in solutions containing Streptococcus mutans, which is the principal cause of dental caries, was applied to tooth specimens to clarify its effect on the microstructure and mechanical properties of the dental structures. With an extended time of up to 16 h, the pH value of the S. mutans solutions dropped from 7.3 to 5.8. Therefore, after immersion in the S. mutans solutions for 16 h, slight erosions of the dental structures began; after 64 h, severe tooth decay occurred with obviously etched dental features. After 128 h, the elastic modulus of enamel and dentine dropped to 85 and 67%, respectively, of the original values of untreated specimens, and the hardness dropped to 88 and 55%, respectively.
The Instability modal behavior of coherent structures in a jet-small cylinder impinging flow field is extensively studied by hot-wire anemometry measurements. The free jet is employed with a small cylinder of 3 mm in diameter located in the potential core region at the impinging length of L/H = 1.5 for the near field impingement and L/H = 4 for the far field impingement. The jet exit velocity is operated at 10 m/sec with the Reynolds number of 1.03 × 104 based on the nozzle exit width H = 15mm. The impinging jet is locally excited at the nozzle exit with varicose mode (m =0) and sinuous mode (m = 1) disturbances at the fundamental frequency of the natural jet flow. Data indicate that the jet flow is greatly altered and significantly enhanced by strengthening the coherent structures of the flow due to resonance according to the feedback mechanism. Although the original natural jet preferably exhibits the varicose mode, the strong sinuous mode is dominant in the flow field owing to the presence of the small cylinder in the potential core region. In the near field impingement, the wake region behind the cylinder preserves the pure sinuous mode to where the jet vortices merge and then mildly fades out. Whereas in the jet shear layer, the sinuous mode exists in the initial portion and gradually transforms to the varicose mode. In the far field impingement, the alternate mode dominates in each frequency stage in pure impinging case and the modal behavior follows the selected mode with the introducing acoustic waves in the acoustic excitation cases.
To determine the susceptibilities of Candida species isolated from Taiwan to amphotericin B and fluconazole.
Prospective surveillance study.
Each hospital was asked to submit up to 10 C. albicans and 40 non-albicans Candida species during the collection period, from April 15 to June 15, 1999. One isolate was accepted from each episode of infection. The broth microdilution method was used to determine susceptibilities to amphotericin B and fluconazole.
Only 3 of 632 isolates, one each of C. famata, C. krusei, and C. tropicalis, were resistant to amphotericin B. A total of 53 (8.4%) of 632 clinical yeast isolates, consisting of 4% C. albicans, 8% C. glabrata, 15% C. tropicalis, and 70% C. krusei, were resistant to fluconazole. In contrast, no C. parapsilosis isolate was resistant to fluconazole. Isolates from tertiary-care medical centers had higher rates of resistance to fluconazole than did those from regional and local hospitals (11.4% vs 6.6%). Isolates from different sources showed different levels of susceptibility to fluconazole. All of the isolates with the exception of C. tropicalis and C. krusei isolated from blood were susceptible to fluconazole. A pattern of co-resistance to both amphotericin B and fluconazole was observed.
Non-albicans Candida species had higher rates of resistance to fluconazole than did C. albicans (44 of 395 [11.2%] vs 9 of 237 [3.8%]; P = .002). The increasing rate of fluconazole resistance in C. tropicalis (15%) is important because C. tropicalis is one of the most commonly isolated non-albicans Candida species.
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