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Loeys–Dietz syndrome is a connective tissue disorder known to cause aggressive aortopathy in paediatric patients, but it is extremely rare for cardiovascular events to present during infancy. We report the first successful aortic repair in a neonate with LDS presenting in extremis with an early onset, massive aortic aneurysm.
A full-term, female presented on her date of birth with severe pulmonary hypertension (PH) and mitral regurgitation (MR), requiring veno-arterial extracorporeal membrane oxygenation. After the treatment, her PH and MR were resolved with no anatomic abnormality present. We propose a positive feedback loop of PH causing right ventricular dilation and interventricular septal shifts, worsening MR, and elevated left atrial, and potentially pulmonary, pressures.
Background: Carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE) are endemic in the Chicago region. We assessed the regional impact of a CRE control intervention targeting high-prevalence facilities; that is, long-term acute-care hospitals (LTACHs) and ventilator-capable skilled nursing facilities (vSNFs). Methods: In July 2017, an academic–public health partnership launched a regional CRE prevention bundle: (1) identifying patient CRE status by querying Illinois’ XDRO registry and periodic point-prevalence surveys reported to public health, (2) cohorting or private rooms with contact precautions for CRE patients, (3) combining hand hygiene adherence, monitoring with general infection control education, and guidance by project coordinators and public health, and (4) daily chlorhexidine gluconate (CHG) bathing. Informed by epidemiology and modeling, we targeted LTACHs and vSNFs in a 13-mile radius from the coordinating center. Illinois mandates CRE reporting to the XDRO registry, which can also be manually queried or generate automated alerts to facilitate interfacility communication. The regional intervention promoted increased automation of alerts to hospitals. The prespecified primary outcome was incident clinical CRE culture reported to the XDRO registry in Cook County by month, analyzed by segmented regression modeling. A secondary outcome was colonization prevalence measured by serial point-prevalence surveys for carbapenemase-producing organism colonization in LTACHs and vSNFs. Results: All eligible LTACHs (n = 6) and vSNFs (n = 9) participated in the intervention. One vSNF declined CHG bathing. vSNFs that implemented CHG bathing typically bathed residents 2–3 times per week instead of daily. Overall, there were significant gaps in infection control practices, especially in vSNFs. Also, 75 Illinois hospitals adopted automated alerts (56 during the intervention period). Mean CRE incidence in Cook County decreased from 59.0 cases per month during baseline to 40.6 cases per month during intervention (P < .001). In a segmented regression model, there was an average reduction of 10.56 cases per month during the 24-month intervention period (P = .02) (Fig. 1), and an estimated 253 incident CRE cases were averted. Mean CRE incidence also decreased among the stratum of vSNF/LTACH intervention facilities (P = .03). However, evidence of ongoing CRE transmission, particularly in vSNFs, persisted, and CRE colonization prevalence remained high at intervention facilities (Table 1). Conclusions: A resource-intensive public health regional CRE intervention was implemented that included enhanced interfacility communication and targeted infection prevention. There was a significant decline in incident CRE clinical cases in Cook County, despite high persistent CRE colonization prevalence in intervention facilities. vSNFs, where understaffing or underresourcing were common and lengths of stay range from months to years, had a major prevalence challenge, underscoring the need for aggressive infection control improvements in these facilities.
Funding: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (SHEPheRD Contract No. 200-2011-42037)
Disclosures: M.Y.L. has received research support in the form of contributed product from OpGen and Sage Products (now part of Stryker Corporation), and has received an investigator-initiated grant from CareFusion Foundation (now part of BD).
CHD remains one of the leading causes of mortality of children in the United States. There is limited research about the experience of parents from the diagnosis of their child with CHD through the death of their child. A prior study has shown that adults with heart failure go through a series of four transitions: 1) learning the diagnosis, 2) reframing the new normal, 3) taking control of the illness, and 4) understanding death is inevitable. In our qualitative study, we performed semi-structured interviews with parents who have a child die of CHD to determine whether the four transitions in adults apply to parents of children with CHD. We found that these four transitions were present in the parents we interviewed and that there were two novel transitions, one that proceeded the first Jones et al transition (“Prenatal diagnosis”) and one that occurred after the final Jones et al transition (“Adjustment after death”). It is our hope that identification of these six transitions will help better support families of children with CHD.
Over half of pregnant women in India are affected by anaemia, which can lead to premature birth, low birth weight and maternal and child mortality. Using formative research, we aimed to understand social and cultural factors around iron and folic acid (IFA) supplement provision and adherence to identify potential strategies for improving adherence and behaviours to prevent and treat anaemia among pregnant and lactating Indian women.
In-depth interviews and focus group discussions with women and key informant interviews with health officials and workers.
Four districts in two Indian states: Allahabad and Bara Banki districts in Uttar Pradesh and Chikkballapura and Mandya districts in Karnataka.
Pregnant and lactating women (n 65) and district officials and community health workers (n 14).
Most women were aware of anaemia but did not understand its seriousness and consequences. All women received IFA supplements (predominantly for free), but many were not adherent because of side effects; lack of information from healthcare providers on the causes of anaemia, its seriousness and solutions and low social support. To address anaemia, women were most confident in their ability to prepare and eat healthier foods but lacked control over resources such as appropriate food availability.
Based on the findings, we recommend multicomponent interventions to train healthcare providers, address systemic barriers and involve family members to support IFA supplement adherence and dietary changes. Future research will determine which strategies are most effective to reduce the burden of anaemia in India among pregnant and lactating women.
Evidence from observational studies indicates that seaweed consumption may reduce the risk of non-communicable diseases such as cardiovascular disease, type two diabetes, and obesity. Accumulating evidence from in vitro and animal studies suggest seaweed have antihyperlipidemic, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties which may in part be attributed to the high content of soluble dietary fibre in seaweeds. The viscosity of seaweed fibres is suggested to mediate antihyperlipdiemic effects via the alteration of lipid/bile acid absorption kinetics to decrease low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL). Thus, there is a need to evaluate the efficacy of seaweed derived dietary fibre in the management of dyslipidemia. Therefore, the aim of this study was to determine the effect of a fibre rich extract from Palmaria palmata on the lipid profile as well as markers of inflammation and oxidative stress in healthy adults. A total of 60 healthy participants (30 male and 30 female) aged 20 to 58 years, were assigned to consume the Palmaria palmata fibre extract (5g/day), Synergy-1 and the placebo (maltodextrin) for a duration of 4 weeks with a minimum 4 week washout between each treatment in a double blind, randomised crossover study conducted over 5 months. Fasting concentrations of cholesterol, triglycerides and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL) were analysed and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL) and LDL: HDL ratio was calculated. C-reactive protein (CRP) and Ferric Reducing Ability of Plasma (FRAP) were analysed as markers of inflammation and oxidative stress, respectively. Supplementation for 4 weeks with Palmaria palmata resulted in favourable changes to lipid profiles with a reduced LDL:HDL ratio; however intention-to-treat univariate ANCOVA identified no significant difference between the treatment groups over time on any of the lipid profile markers. A non-significant increase in CRP and triglyceride concentration along with lower FRAP was also observed with Palmaria palmata supplementation. Evidence from this study suggests that Palmaria palmata may have effects on lipid metabolism and appears to mobilise triglycerides. More research is needed in individuals with dyslipidaemia to fully elucidate these effects.
Sleep disturbances are prevalent in cancer patients, especially those with advanced disease. There are few published intervention studies that address sleep issues in advanced cancer patients during the course of treatment. This study assesses the impact of a multidisciplinary quality of life (QOL) intervention on subjective sleep difficulties in patients with advanced cancer.
This randomized trial investigated the comparative effects of a multidisciplinary QOL intervention (n = 54) vs. standard care (n = 63) on sleep quality in patients with advanced cancer receiving radiation therapy as a secondary endpoint. The intervention group attended six intervention sessions, while the standard care group received informational material only. Sleep quality was assessed using the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI) and Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS), administered at baseline and weeks 4 (post-intervention), 27, and 52.
The intervention group had a statistically significant improvement in the PSQI total score and two components of sleep quality and daytime dysfunction than the control group at week 4. At week 27, although both groups showed improvements in sleep measures from baseline, there were no statistically significant differences between groups in any of the PSQI total and component scores, or ESS. At week 52, the intervention group used less sleep medication than control patients compared to baseline (p = 0.04) and had a lower ESS score (7.6 vs. 9.3, p = 0.03).
Significance of results
A multidisciplinary intervention to improve QOL can also improve sleep quality of advanced cancer patients undergoing radiation therapy. Those patients who completed the intervention also reported the use of less sleep medication.
Low- and middle-income countries (LMIC) are increasingly experiencing the double burden of malnutrition. Studies to identify ‘double-duty’ actions that address both undernutrition and overweight in sub-Saharan Africa are needed. We aimed to identify acceptable behaviours to achieve more optimal feeding and physical activity practices among both under- and overweight children in Rwanda, a sub-Saharan LMIC with one of the largest recent increases in child overweight.
We used the Trials of Improved Practices (TIPs) method. During three household visits over 1·5 weeks, we used structured interviews and unstructured observations to collect data on infant and young child feeding practices and caregivers’ experiences with testing recommended practices.
An urban district and a rural district in Rwanda.
Caregivers with an under- or overweight child from 6 to 59 months of age (n 136).
We identified twenty-five specific recommended practices that caregivers of both under- and overweight children agreed to try. The most frequently recommended practices were related to dietary diversity, food quantity, and hygiene and food handling. The most commonly cited reason for trying a new practice was its benefits to the child’s health and growth. Financial constraints and limited food availability were common barriers. Nearly all caregivers said they were willing to continue the practices and recommend them to others.
These practices show potential for addressing the double burden as part of a broader intervention. Still, further research is needed to determine whether caregivers can maintain the behaviours and their direct impact on both under- and overweight.
Obesity and hyperglycaemia contribute to the atherosclerotic process in part through oxidative modifications to lipoprotein particles. The present study aimed to evaluate the effects of a lifestyle intervention on markers of oxidized lipoproteins in obese Latino adolescents with prediabetes.
Participants were enrolled into a 12-week lifestyle intervention. Measurements pre- and post-intervention included anthropometrics and body composition, lipid panel, oxidized LDL (oxLDL), oxidized HDL (oxHDL), intake of fresh fruits and vegetables, and cardiorespiratory fitness.
Thirty-five obese Latino adolescents (seventeen females, eighteen males; mean age 15·5 (sd 1·0) years; mean BMI percentile 98·5 (sd 1·2)) with prediabetes.
Intervention participation resulted in significant reductions in weight (−1·2 %, P = 0·042), BMI and BMI percentile (−2·0 and −0·4 %, respectively, P < 0·001), body fat (−7·0 %, P = 0·025), TAG (−11·8 %, P = 0·032), total cholesterol (−5·0 %, P = 0·002), VLDL-cholesterol (−12·5 %, P = 0·029), and non-HDL-cholesterol (−6·7 %, P = 0·007). Additionally, fitness (6·4 %, P < 0·001) and intake of fruits and vegetables (42·4 %, P = 0·025) increased significantly. OxLDL decreased significantly after the intervention (51·0 (sd 14·0) v. 48·7 (sd 12·8) U/l, P = 0·022), while oxHDL trended towards a significant increase (395·2 (sd 94·6) v. 416·1 (sd 98·4) ng/ml, P = 0·056).
These data support the utility of lifestyle intervention to improve the atherogenic phenotype of Latino adolescents who are at high risk for developing premature CVD and type 2 diabetes.
Critical heart disease in the pediatric population is associated with high morbidity and mortality. Research around the most effective communication and decision-making strategies is lacking. This systematic review aims to summarise what is known about parent preference for communication and decision-making in children with critical heart disease. Database searches included key words such as family, pediatric heart disease, communication, and decision-making. A total of 10 studies fit our inclusion criteria: nine were qualitative studies with parent interviews and one study was quantitative with a parent survey. We found three main themes regarding physician–parent communication and decision-making in the context of paediatric heart disease: (1) amount, timing, and content of information provided to parents; (2) helpful physician characteristics and communication styles; and (3) reinforcing the support circle for families.
Hill (Twin Research and Human Genetics, Vol. 21, 2018, 84–88) presented a critique of our recently published paper in Cell Reports entitled ‘Large-Scale Cognitive GWAS Meta-Analysis Reveals Tissue-Specific Neural Expression and Potential Nootropic Drug Targets’ (Lam et al., Cell Reports, Vol. 21, 2017, 2597–2613). Specifically, Hill offered several interrelated comments suggesting potential problems with our use of a new analytic method called Multi-Trait Analysis of GWAS (MTAG) (Turley et al., Nature Genetics, Vol. 50, 2018, 229–237). In this brief article, we respond to each of these concerns. Using empirical data, we conclude that our MTAG results do not suffer from ‘inflation in the FDR [false discovery rate]’, as suggested by Hill (Twin Research and Human Genetics, Vol. 21, 2018, 84–88), and are not ‘more relevant to the genetic contributions to education than they are to the genetic contributions to intelligence’.
Medieval English Theatre is the premier journal in early theatre studies. Its name belies its wide range of interest: it publishes articles on theatre and pageantry from across the British Isles up to the opening of the London playhouses and the suppression of the civic mystery cycles, and also includes contributions on European and Latin drama, together with analyses of modern survivals or equivalents, and of research productions of medieval plays. This volume includes essays on spectatorship, audience reception and records of early drama, especially in Scotland, besides engaging with the current interest in the Towneley Plays and the history of its manuscript.Editors: Sarah Carpenter, Pamela M. King, Meg Twycross, Greg Walker.
Medieval English Theatre Meeting 2015 Change of publication details
The 2015 METh meeting was held at the University of Southampton, hosted by John McGavin. His carefully timetabled proceedings were interrupted by the unscheduled (by him) presentation of a Festschrift in his honour. He holds the unique composite volume, but the articles it contains will be divided between this volume of METh (Part One), and Volume 38 (Part Two).
The rest of the day lived up to its festive beginning. A range of papers on the topic of ‘Paradigms Lost’ highlighted those once entrenched scholarly positions about which we have changed our minds. Pamela M. King, in ‘Medieval Drama Criticism before METh’, introduced the late nineteenth-century work of Adolphus William Ward; Garrett Epp, on ‘Things we can no longer say about the Towneley Plays’, gave an impressive PowerPoint show of deletions of accepted ‘facts’; while Meg Twycross summarised new evidence on the provenance of the manuscript (see this volume). Other speakers introduced new material which extends or changes our approach to well-worn topics: Lindsey Cox showed us the visual evidence for the portrait miniature in Wit and Science, and how the different parts of the audience might have perceived it, and Jason Burg sketched the changing patterns of performance in Lincoln Cathedral between 1309 and 1642. Nadia van Pelt reminded us of the necessity of looking at original manuscript sources rather than their calendared summaries by discussing the enigmatic detail of a letter from Chapuys which reports Henry VIII's visit to a St John's Day pageant showing him ‘cutting off the heads of the clergy’; while Greg Walker rounded off the day with a masterly summation of recent critical approaches to spectatorship, and where they fell short.
Elisabeth Dutton gave us our own spectatorly experience. Before lunch, James McBain and Stephanie Allen of the EDOX (Early Drama at Oxford University) project spoke about ‘Rehabilitating Academic Drama’, and just after lunch this was put to the test by an enthusiastic reading of the play of Narcissus originally mounted by the undergraduates of St John's College, Oxford, as a Christmas entertainment in 1602.
Volumes 37 and 38 of Medieval English Theatre offer a collection of essays to honour John McGavin. Written by his friends and colleagues, students and admirers, these all testify to the deep affection as well as the academic esteem in which John himself and his work across the discipline of early theatre are held. Many reflect his own particular interests in the early drama of England and, especially, of Scotland: its records and narratives, its spectators, its intellectual and affective strategies, and its cultural work. There are papers on many aspects of Scottish theatrical culture, from ceremonial (Williamson) to Sir David Lyndsay (Hadley Williams, Happé, and Walker); from foolery (Carpenter) to Dunbar's dramatic voice (Jack). John's abiding interest in spectatorship and audience reception is approached from different angles, in morality drama (Steenbrugge), dialogue (Bose), in the York Play (King), academic drama (Dutton), and theory (van Pelt). His authoritative work in the creative interpretation of records and narratives, of both dramatic and para-dramatic performance, is reflected in essays on coronation ceremony (Hunt), libel (Egan), and monastic crucifixion games (Klausner). His steering role in the project on Early Modern London Theatres is commemorated in the online Bear Hunt (MacLean and Hagen). Three essays engage with one of the central current concerns of early theatre study, the Towneley manuscript and its plays (Epp, Johnston, and Twycross), while two more address uniquely revealing single plays: the Digby Mary Magdalen (Godfrey), and the Welsh Troelus a Chresyd (Niebrzydowski).
John's work has indeed come to epitomise ‘the best pairt of our play’. The number of essays contributed to the collection, by scholars young and old across the whole field of early drama studies, shows the range of his influence on the discipline itself and on generations of those working within it. This collection is offered as a tribute both to his creative scholarship and his collegiality. There is no space here for all the many friends and colleagues who would like to salute him on this occasion; but we hope that the recollections of three voices, offering memories and appreciation from John's student days to the present, may speak for us all.