2,551 research outputs found

    Tobacco dependence treatment for special populations: challenges and opportunities

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    Although smoking rates have declined in most of the countries in the world, there are population groups within these countries whose smoking rates remain significantly higher than the general population. These ‘‘forgotten groups’’ who have not been receiving the needed attention in tobacco control policies and tobacco cessation efforts include people with serious mental illness, substance use disorders, tuberculosis, people living with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), lesbian-gaybisexual-transgender-queer people, and pregnant women. A number of steps are needed at the national level in countries where these disparities exist, including modifications to national smoking cessation treatment guidelines that address the special needs of these populations, as well as targeted smoking cessation research, since these populations are often not included in clinical trials. Because of the higher smoking prevalence in these populations, as well as their lower smoking cessation treatment success rates than the general population, more resources are needed if we are to reduce health disparities in these vulnerable populations. Additionally, we believe that more effort should be focused on integrating smoking cessation treatment in the specialized care settings frequented by these subpopulations

    Does oral sodium bicarbonate therapy improve function and quality of life in older patients with chronic kidney disease and low-grade acidosis (the BiCARB trial)? Study protocol for a randomized controlled trial

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    Date of acceptance: 01/07/2015 © 2015 Witham et al. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly credited. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated. Acknowledgements UK NIHR HTA grant 10/71/01. We acknowledge the financial support of NHS Research Scotland in conducting this trial.Peer reviewedPublisher PD

    Development of physical and mental health summary scores from the patient-reported outcomes measurement information system (PROMIS) global items

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    The use of global health items permits an efficient way of gathering general perceptions of health. These items provide useful summary information about health and are predictive of health care utilization and subsequent mortality. Analyses of 10 self-reported global health items obtained from an internet survey as part of the Patient-Reported Outcome Measurement Information System (PROMIS) project. We derived summary scores from the global health items. We estimated the associations of the summary scores with the EQ-5D index score and the PROMIS physical function, pain, fatigue, emotional distress, and social health domain scores. Exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses supported a two-factor model. Global physical health (GPH; 4 items on overall physical health, physical function, pain, and fatigue) and global mental health (GMH; 4 items on quality of life, mental health, satisfaction with social activities, and emotional problems) scales were created. The scales had internal consistency reliability coefficients of 0.81 and 0.86, respectively. GPH correlated more strongly with the EQ-5D than did GMH (r = 0.76 vs. 0.59). GPH correlated most strongly with pain impact (r = −0.75) whereas GMH correlated most strongly with depressive symptoms (r = −0.71). Two dimensions representing physical and mental health underlie the global health items in PROMIS. These global health scales can be used to efficiently summarize physical and mental health in patient-reported outcome studies

    Induction of labour versus expectant management in women with preterm prelabour rupture of membranes between 34 and 37 weeks (the PPROMEXIL-trial)

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    Contains fulltext : 53155.pdf ( ) (Open Access)BACKGROUND: Preterm prelabour rupture of the membranes (PPROM) is an important clinical problem and a dilemma for the gynaecologist. On the one hand, awaiting spontaneous labour increases the probability of infectious disease for both mother and child, whereas on the other hand induction of labour leads to preterm birth with an increase in neonatal morbidity (e.g., respiratory distress syndrome (RDS)) and a possible rise in the number of instrumental deliveries. METHODS/DESIGN: We aim to determine the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of immediate delivery after PPROM in near term gestation compared to expectant management. Pregnant women with preterm prelabour rupture of the membranes at a gestational age from 34+0 weeks until 37+0 weeks will be included in a multicentre prospective randomised controlled trial. We will compare early delivery with expectant monitoring.The primary outcome of this study is neonatal sepsis. Secondary outcome measures are maternal morbidity (chorioamnionitis, puerperal sepsis) and neonatal disease, instrumental delivery rate, maternal quality of life, maternal preferences and costs. We anticipate that a reduction of neonatal infection from 7.5% to 2.5% after induction will outweigh an increase in RDS and additional costs due to admission of the child due to prematurity. Under these assumptions, we aim to randomly allocate 520 women to two groups of 260 women each. Analysis will be by intention to treat. Additionally a cost-effectiveness analysis will be performed to evaluate if the cost related to early delivery will outweigh those of expectant management. Long term outcomes will be evaluated using modelling. DISCUSSION: This trial will provide evidence as to whether induction of labour after preterm prelabour rupture of membranes is an effective and cost-effective strategy to reduce the risk of neonatal sepsis. CONTROLLED CLINICAL TRIAL REGISTER: ISRCTN29313500

    Minimal changes in health status questionnaires: distinction between minimally detectable change and minimally important change

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    Changes in scores on health status questionnaires are difficult to interpret. Several methods to determine minimally important changes (MICs) have been proposed which can broadly be divided in distribution-based and anchor-based methods. Comparisons of these methods have led to insight into essential differences between these approaches. Some authors have tried to come to a uniform measure for the MIC, such as 0.5 standard deviation and the value of one standard error of measurement (SEM). Others have emphasized the diversity of MIC values, depending on the type of anchor, the definition of minimal importance on the anchor, and characteristics of the disease under study. A closer look makes clear that some distribution-based methods have been merely focused on minimally detectable changes. For assessing minimally important changes, anchor-based methods are preferred, as they include a definition of what is minimally important. Acknowledging the distinction between minimally detectable and minimally important changes is useful, not only to avoid confusion among MIC methods, but also to gain information on two important benchmarks on the scale of a health status measurement instrument. Appreciating the distinction, it becomes possible to judge whether the minimally detectable change of a measurement instrument is sufficiently small to detect minimally important changes

    General and Specific Self-efficacy Reports of Patients with Chronic Low Back Pain: Are They Related to Performances in a Functional Capacity Evaluation?

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    Introduction The objective of this study was to analyze the relationship of general and specific self-efficacy (SE) beliefs with functional capacity evaluation (FCE) performances in patients with chronic non-specific low back pain (CLBP), while controlling for influence of gender, age, and self-reported pain intensity, self-esteem, disability, psychosocial distress and health status. Methods Included were 92 patients with CLBP referred to an outpatient university based multidisciplinary pain rehabilitation program in The Netherlands. All patients underwent an FCE. General SE was measured with the ALCOS questionnaire prior to the FCE, specific SE was measured with a self-constructed standardized question during the FCE. Paired samples t-tests were used to tests differences between predicted and actual performances. Pearson and Spearman rank correlation coefficients were used to express the strength of the relationships between SE and performances. Multivariate analyses were used to test the influence of control variables on the relationships between SE (general or specific) and performances. Results Performances were consistently higher than patients’ self-predictions. Differences between predictions and performances were significant in male lifting low, male carrying, and female carrying. With exception of the association between specific SE and lifting in males (r = 0.55, P < 0.05), all other correlations between general and specific SE and FCE performances were non-significant. Multivariable regression analyses showed that the relative contribution of SE measures over gender was little or none. Conclusions The contribution of specific SE to the prediction of FCE performances is moderate in one instance, and insignificant in most instances (both specific and general SE). Because of the consistency of the differences between prediction (specific SE) and performances, and depending on the level of accuracy needed, future research may deliberate the use of predicted material handling capacities at group level and correct for a systematic underprediction

    Green and hawksbill turtles in the Lesser Antilles demonstrate behavioural plasticity in inter-nesting behaviour and post-nesting migration

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    Satellite transmitters were deployed on three green turtles, Chelonia mydas, and two hawksbill turtles, Eretmochelys imbricata, nesting in the Lesser Antilles islands, Caribbean, between 2005-2007 to obtain preliminary information about the inter-nesting, migratory and foraging habitats in the region. Despite the extremely small dataset, both year-round residents and migrants were identified; specifically (1) two green turtles used local shallow coastal sites within 50 km of the nesting beach during all of their inter-nesting periods and then settled at these sites on completion of their breeding seasons, (2) one hawksbill turtle travelled 200 km westward before reversing direction and settling within 50 km of the original nesting beach and (3) one green and one hawksbill turtle initially nested at the proximate site, before permanently relocating to an alternative nesting site over 190 km distant. A lack of nesting beach fidelity was supported by flipper tag datasets for the region. Tagging datasets from 2002-2012 supported that some green and hawksbill individuals exhibit low fidelity to nesting beaches, whereas other females exhibited a high degree of fidelity (26 turtles tagged, 40.0km maximum distance recorded from original nesting beach). Individual turtles nesting on St Eustatius and St Maarten appear to exhibit behavioural plasticity in their inter-nesting behaviour and post-nesting migration routes in the Eastern Caribbean. The tracking and tagging data combined indicate that some of the green and hawksbill females that nest in the Lesser Antilles Islands are year-round residents, while others may nest and forage at alternative sites. Thus, continued year-round protection of these islands and implementation of protection programmes in nearby islands could contribute towards safeguarding the green and hawksbill populations of the region

    Multi-dimensionality and variability in folk classification of stingless bees (Apidae: Meliponini)

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    Background: Not long ago Eugene Hunn suggested using a combination of cognitive, linguistic, ecological and evolutionary theories in order to account for the dynamic character of ethnoecology in the study of folk classification systems. In this way he intended to question certain homogeneity in folk classifications models and deepen in the analysis and interpretation of variability in folk classifications. This paper studies how a rural culturally mixed population of the Atlantic Forest of Misiones (Argentina) classified honey-producing stingless bees according to the linguistic, cognitive and ecological dimensions of folk classification. We also analyze the socio-ecological meaning of binomialization in naming and the meaning of general local variability in the appointment of stingless bees. Methods: We used three different approaches: the classical approach developed by Brent Berlin which relies heavily on linguistic criteria, the approach developed by Eleonor Rosch which relies on psychological (cognitive) principles of categorization and finally we have captured the ecological dimension of folk classification in local narratives. For the second approximation, we developed ways of measuring the degree of prototypicality based on a total of 107 comparisons of the type "X is similar to Y" identified in personal narratives. Results: Various logical and grouping strategies coexist and were identified as: graded of lateral linkage, hierarchical and functional. Similarity judgments among folk taxa resulted in an implicit logic of classification graded according to taxa's prototypicality. While there is a high agreement on naming stingless bees with monomial names, a considerable number of underrepresented binomial names and lack of names were observed. Two possible explanations about reported local naming variability are presented. Conclusions: We support the multidimensionality of folk classification systems. This confirms the specificity of local classification systems but also reflects the use of grouping strategies and mechanisms commonly observed in other cultural groups, such as the use of similarity judgments between more or less prototypical organisms. Also we support the idea that alternative naming results from a process of fragmentation of knowledge or incomplete transmission of knowledge. These processes lean on the facts that culturally based knowledge, on the one hand, and biologic knowledge of nature on the other, can be acquired through different learning pathways.Fil: Zamudio, Fernando. Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas. Centro Científico Tecnológico Córdoba. Instituto Multidisciplinario de Biología Vegetal (p); ArgentinaFil: Hilgert, Norma Ines. Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Cientiâ­ficas y Tecnicas. Centro Cientifico Tecnologico Nordeste. Instituto de Biologia Subtropical. Instituto de Biologia Subtropical - Nodo Puerto Iguazu; Argentin
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