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The aim of the present cross-sectional study was to investigate the associations between caregivers’ attachment styles, family functioning, the care setting and pre-loss grief symptoms, the burden, and the caregivers’ belief of patients’ awareness of the terminal cancer diagnosis.
A total of 101 caregivers of patients with terminal cancer in residential hospice care and home care were interviewed and completed self-report questionnaires.
Insecure attachment style and home care setting were associated with worse psychological effects in caregivers of patients with terminal cancer. Moreover, family cohesion can promote low social burden and the patient’s awareness of their terminal condition.
Significance of results
This study highlighted the importance of evaluating the caregiver’s attachment style, family functioning, and the setting of care during the terminal phase of the patient’s life. These findings will be useful to planning interventions to prevent burden and the pre-loss grief symptoms in the caregivers.
The ability to noninvasively image the cone photoreceptor mosaic holds significant potential as a diagnostic for retinal disease. Central to the realization of this potential is the development of sensitive metrics for characterizing the organization of the mosaic. Here we evaluated previously-described and newly-developed (Fourier- and Radon-based) methods of measuring cone orientation in simulated and real images of the parafoveal cone mosaic. The proposed algorithms correlated well across both simulated and real mosaics, suggesting that each algorithm provides an accurate description of photoreceptor orientation. Despite high agreement between algorithms, each performed differently in response to image intensity variation and cone coordinate jitter. The integration property of the Fourier transform allowed the Fourier-based method to be resistant to cone coordinate jitter and perform the most robustly of all three algorithms. Conversely, when there is good image quality but unreliable cone identification, the Radon algorithm performed best. Finally, in cases where the cone coordinate reliability was excellent, the method previously described by Pum and colleagues performed best. These descriptors are complementary to conventional descriptive metrics of the cone mosaic, such as cell density and spacing, and have the potential to aid in the detection of photoreceptor pathology.
Though much is known about freshwater snail ecology, their circadian rhythms remain poorly investigated. Well-fed, stress-free, mid-size adults of six species common in central Italian lakes were exposed to natural sunlight and photoperiod, and their activity status was recorded at 3-h intervals during a 9-d indoor experiment. All species exhibited evident diurnal habits despite high individual variability, with midday-to-early-afternoon activity peaks. Activity was correlated with diel light conditions but not with short-term changes in albedo. The prosobranch Bithynia (=Codiella) leachii and the pulmonates Physa (=Physella) acuta and Planorbis planorbis were the most active species and exhibited the longest-lasting response to daytime food addition. The prosobranch Valvata piscinalis exhibited long periods retracted in its shell with the operculum shut, and the remaining taxa (the pulmonates Galba (=Lymnaea) truncatula and Radix (=Lymnaea) auricularia) exhibited an intermediate degree of activity. P. acuta was the most active species at night and exhibited the quicker response to nighttime food addition. Alertedness to (diurnal) predators may be highest for the highly active P. acuta and P. planorbis, whose antipredator defenses are mainly behavioral. Diel activity patterns and other ecological characteristics suggest that P. acuta may be favored in food-rich habitats, while V. piscinalis may not be able to fully exploit food resources, especially if in limiting quantities. All snail species – and P. acuta in particular – may stimulate periphyton metabolism while keeping its biomass low by grazing mainly during the time of maximum photosynthesis.
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