1,496 research outputs found

    Opioid-induced or pain relief-reduced symptoms in advanced cancer patients?

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    Background: While opioids in increasing doses may produce adverse effects, the same adverse effects may be associated with poor pain control. Moreover, in the clinical setting symptomatic treatment and illness may balance the outcome of opioid titration. Some adverse effects may tend to disappear continuing the treatment in a long-term period. Aims: The aim of this study was to monitor the effects of a rapid opioid titration combined with symptomatic treatment in patients with poor relief and to monitor these changes in the following period of 20 days. Methods: A consecutive sample of 35 patients admitted to an acute Pain Relief and Palliative Care Unit were titrated with opioids, according to a department policy, allowing administration of parenteral opioids to assist opioid titration with oral or transdermal opioids. Results: Thirty-three patients were followed up for the period of the study. Pain was adequately controlled and doses were opioid doses were stable after a mean of 40 h. Opioid escalation index (OEI) was extremely high initially, and then progressively declined at the following study intervals. Weakness and nausea and vomiting did not change, as well as confusion and appetite. Drowsiness, constipation and dry mouth significantly increased and then did not change, although a significant decrease in drowsiness was subsequently observed. Well-being improved some weeks after opioid stabilization. In multivariate analysis, drowsiness and dry mouth were correlated to opioid doses. Conclusion: The effects reported were often due to multiple causes. A rapid decrease in pain intensity induced by rapid opioid titration does not produce changes in weakness, nausea and vomiting, appetite. While constipation appears the most relevant problem,resistant to common symptomatic treatment, drowsiness initially produced by acute opioid dose increase and the achievement of pain relief, tends to spontaneously decrease, probably as the result of late tolerance. Improved well-being may be the late positive effect of pain relief, also influenced by the setting of home care

    Factors affecting the vaccination choices of pregnant women for their children. A systematic review of the literature

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    In recent years, an increase in vaccine hesitancy has led to a decrease in vaccination coverage in several countries. We conducted a systematic review of studies that assessed knowledge of and attitudes toward pediatric vaccinations, and the vaccination choices and their determinants among pregnant women. A total of 6,277 records were retrieved, and 16 full texts were included in the narrative synthesis. The published literature on the topic shows that, overall, pregnant women believe that vaccines are important for the protection of their children and the community, but various concerns and misunderstandings persist around vaccine safety and efficacy, which reduce the trust of expectant mothers in immunization. Nevertheless, such attitudes and choices vary depending on the vaccine being considered and the corresponding determinants should therefore be studied in the context of each specific vaccination. Further research on this topic is needed, particularly in non-western countries

    Healthcare personnel and hand decontamination in intensive care units: Knowledge, attitudes, and behaviour in Italy

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    The purpose of this study was to evaluate knowledge, attitudes, and behaviour regarding hand decontamination in personnel of intensive care units (ICUs) in Italy. All ICU physicians and nurses in 19 and five randomly selected hospitals in Campania and Calabria (Italy) were mailed a questionnaire focusing on demographics and practice characteristics; knowledge about prevention of hospital acquired infection; attitudes and behaviour with respect to hand decontamination; and use of gloves. A total of 413 questionnaires were returned giving a response rate of 66.6%. Overall, 53.2% agreed with the correct responses on knowledge related to infection control, and this knowledge was significantly higher in neonatal and medicine-surgery wards and in larger ICUs. A positive attitude was reported by the large majority who agreed that hand decontamination reduces the risk of infection in patients (96.8%) and personnel (86.2%), and the positive attitude was significantly higher among older and female personnel and in those with a higher level of knowledge. Only 60% always decontaminate hands at the start of a shift, and 72.5% before and after a patient contact. Higher compliance is reported for invasive manoeuvres, such as urinary catheters (96.5%) and intravenous lines (77.1%). Routine hand decontamination between each patient was significantly higher in females, and in neonatal and medicine-surgery ICUs. Our results suggest that interventions should not only be focused on predisposing factors (knowledge), but also on enabling (facilitating) and reinforcing (gratifying) factors

    The use of opioids for breakthrough pain in acute palliative care unit by using doses proportional to opioid basal regimen.

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    OBJECTIVES: To determine the efficacy and safety of different opioids used in doses proportional to the basal opioid regimen for the management of breakthrough pain (BP). METHODS: In 66 patients consecutive patients admitted to a pain relief and palliative care unit, the efficacy and safety of different opioids used in doses proportional to the basal opioid regimen for the management of breakthrough pain (BP) were assessed. The choice of the opioid to be administered as rescue medication was based on the characteristics of patients, clinical stability, compliance, preference, and so on. For each episode, nurses were instructed to routinely collect changes in pain intensity and emerging problems when pain became severe (T0), and to re-assess the patient 15 minutes after the opioid given as a rescue medication (T15). RESULTS: Six hundred twenty four episodes of BP were recorded during admission. Intravenous morphine (IV-MO) and oral transmucosal fentanyl (OTFC) were most frequently administered. Of 503 events available, 427 episodes were defined as successfully treated, while 76 episodes required a further administration of opioids. Pain intensity significantly decreased at T15 in all the groups (P<0.001). In 97.2% and 90.7% of cases treated with IV-MO, BP events had a reduction in pain intensity of more than 33% and 50%, respectively. In 99.2% and 97.6% patients receiving OTFC, BP events had a reduction in pain intensity of more than 33% and 50%, respectively. DISCUSSION: This survey suggests that doses of opioids for BP proportional to the basal opioid regimen, are very effective and safe in clinical practice, regardless the opioid and modality used

    Disinvestment in healthcare: An overview of HTA agencies and organizations activities at European level

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    Background: In an era of a growing economic pressure for all health systems, the interest for "disinvestment" in healthcare increased. In this context, evidence based approaches such as Health Technology Assessment (HTA) are needed both to invest and to disinvest in health technologies. In order to investigate the extent of application of HTA in this field, methodological projects/frameworks, case studies, dissemination initiatives on disinvestment released by HTA agencies and organizations located in Europe were searched. Methods: In July 2015, the websites of HTA agencies and organizations belonging to the European network for HTA (EUnetHTA) and the International Network of Agencies for HTA (INAHTA) were accessed and searched through the use of the term "disinvestment". Retrieved deliverables were considered eligible if they reported methodological projects/frameworks, case studies and dissemination initiatives focused on disinvestment in healthcare. Results: 62 HTA agencies/organizations were accessed and eight methodological projects/frameworks, one case study and one dissemination initiative were found starting from 2007. With respect to methodological projects/frameworks, two were delivered in Austria, one in Italy, two in Spain and three in U.K. As for the case study and the dissemination initiative, both came from U.K. The majority of deliverables were aimed at making an overview of existing disinvestment approaches and at identifying challenges in their introduction. Conclusions: Today, in a healthcare context characterized by resource scarcity and increasing service demand, "disinvestment" from low-value services and reinvestment in high-value ones is a key strategy that may be supported by HTA. The lack of evaluation of technologies in use, in particular at the end of their lifecycle, may be due to the scant availability of frameworks and guidelines for identification and assessment of obsolete technologies that was shown by our work. Although several projects were carried out in different countries, most remain constrained to the field of research. Disinvestment is a relatively new concept in HTA that could pose challenges also from a methodological point of view. To tackle these challenges, it is necessary to construct experiences at international level with the aim to develop new methodological approaches to produce and grow evidence on disinvestment policies and practices

    Transmucosal fentanyl vs intravenous morphine in doses proportional to basal opioid regimen for episodic-breakthrough pain

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    The use of supplemental doses of opioids is commonly suggested to manage breakthrough pain. A comparative study of intravenous morphine (IV-MO) and oral transmucosal fentanyl citrate (OTFC) given in doses proportional to the basal opioid regimen was performed in 25 cancer patients receiving stable opioid doses. For each episode, when it occurred and 15 and 30 min after the treatment, pain intensity and opioid-related symptoms were recorded. Fifty-three couples of breakthrough events, each treated with IV-MO and OTFC, were recorded. In episodes treated with IV-MO, pain intensity decreased from a mean of 6.9 to 3.3 and to 1.7 at T1 and T2, respectively. In episodes treated with OTFC, pain intensity decreased from a mean of 6.9 to 4.1 and to 2.4 at T1 and T2, respectively. Statistical differences between the two treatments were found at T1 (P=0.013), but not at T2 (P=0.059). Adverse effects were comparable and were not significantly related with the IV-MO and OTFC doses. Intravenous morphine and OTFC in doses proportional to the scheduled daily dose of opioids were both safe and effective, IV-MO having a shorter onset than OTFC. Future comparative studies with appropriate design should compare titration methods and proportional methods of OTFC dosing

    Measles among healthcare workers in Italy. Is it time to act?

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    Vaccination of healthcare workers (HCWs) against measles is strongly recommended in Europe. In this study, we examined the impact of measles on Italian HCWs by systematically and quantitatively analyzing measles cases involving HCWs over time and by identifying the epidemiological characteristics of the respective measles outbreaks. We retrieved data on measles cases from the Italian national integrated measles and rubella surveillance system from January 2013 to May 2019. Additionally, we performed a systematic review of the literature and an analysis of the measles and rubella aggregate outbreaks reporting forms from 2014 to 2018. Our review suggests that preventing measles infection among HCWs in disease outbreaks may be crucial for the elimination of measles in Italy. National policies aiming to increase HCW immunization rates are fundamental to the protection of HCWs and patients, will limit the economic impact of outbreaks on the institutions affected and will help achieve the elimination goal

    Genomics knowledge and attitudes among European public health professionals. Results of a cross-sectional survey

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    Background The international public health (PH) community is debating the opportunity to incorporate genomic technologies into PH practice. A survey was conducted to assess attitudes of the European Public Health Association (EUPHA) members towards their role in the implementation of public health genomics (PHG), and their knowledge and attitudes towards genetic testing and the delivery of genetic services. Methods EUPHA members were invited via monthly newsletter and e-mail to take part in an online survey from February 2017 to January 2018. A descriptive analysis of knowledge and attitudes was conducted, along with a univariate and multivariate analysis of their determinants. Results Five hundred and two people completed the questionnaire, 17.9% were involved in PHG activities. Only 28.9% correctly identified all medical conditions for which there is (or not) evidence for implementing genetic testing; over 60% thought that investing in genomics may divert economic resources from social and environmental determinants of health. The majority agreed that PH professionals may play different roles in incorporating genomics into their activities. Better knowledge was associated with positive attitudes towards the use of genetic testing and the delivery of genetic services in PH (OR = 1.48; 95% CI 1.01–2.18). Conclusions Our study revealed quite positive attitudes, but also a need to increase awareness on genomics among European PH professionals. Those directly involved in PHG activities tend to have a more positive attitude and better knowledge; however, gaps are also evident in this group, suggesting the need to harmonize practice and encourage greater exchange of knowledge among professionals
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