85 research outputs found

    Intravitreal Injection Planning during COVID-19 Pandemic: A Retrospective Study of Two Tertiary University Centers in Italy

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    The COVID-19 pandemic has hampered the optimum management of retinal diseases. This study examined the impact of the pandemic on the intravitreal-injection practice in two academic centers in Italy along with the related medico-legal implications. A retrospective analysis of electronic medical records from 16 March 2020 to 14 March 2021 at the ophthalmological departments of University of Cagliari (SGD) and University Magna Græcia of Catanzaro (UMG) was conducted. The data collected between 16 March 2020 and 14 June 2020 (lockdown), 15 June 2020 and 13 September 2020 (unlock), and 14 September 2020 and 14 March 2021 (second wave) were compared with those of the same period of the previous year. Weekly data on the administered drug and the number and type of treated disease were collected and analyzed. During the lockdown, a drop of 59% at SGD (p < 0.00001) and 77% at UMG (p < 0.00001) in intravitreal injections was found. In the first year of the pandemic, the reduction in injections was approximately of 27% (p < 0.0008) and 38% (p < 0.0001) at SGD and UMG, respectively. The COVID-19-related containment measures and the health resources redistribution have led to a delay in the treatment of chronic diseases of the retina, prioritizing the undeferrable ones. The lack of management guidelines has conceived relevant ethical and medico-legal issues that need to be considered in future measures planning

    Informed Consent: Legal Obligation or Cornerstone of the Care Relationship?

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    The topic of informed consent has become increasingly important in recent decades, both in the ethical-deontological field and as a duty of law. The review covered all sentences issued by the 13th section of the Civil Court of Rome during the period January 2016–December 2020. During this period, 156 judgments were found in which a breach of consent was required; in 24 of these, specific liability was proven, and the corresponding compensation liquidated. Moreover, 80% of the cases concerned the lack of information provided. The most involved branches were those related to surgical areas: general surgery, plastic surgery and aesthetic medicine and orthopaedics. The total amount of compensation paid was EUR 287,144.59. The research carried out has highlighted how, in a broad jurisprudential context, the damage caused by the violation of the right related to informed consent is considered, and how it impacts on the economic compensation of damages. Additionally, it showed that the areas most affected by the information deficit are those related to the performance of surgical activities, which are characterized by greater invasiveness and a higher risk of adverse events. The data reported underline the exigency to consider informed consent not as a mere documentary allegation but as an essential moment in the construction of a valid therapeutic alliance, which is also useful for avoiding unnecessary litigation that is becoming increasingly burdensome for healthcare systems all over the world

    Informed consent. Legal obligation or cornerstone of the care relationship?

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    : The topic of informed consent has become increasingly important in recent decades, both in the ethical-deontological field and as a duty of law. The review covered all sentences issued by the 13th section of the Civil Court of Rome during the period January 2016-December 2020. During this period, 156 judgments were found in which a breach of consent was required; in 24 of these, specific liability was proven, and the corresponding compensation liquidated. Moreover, 80% of the cases concerned the lack of information provided. The most involved branches were those related to surgical areas: general surgery, plastic surgery and aesthetic medicine and orthopaedics. The total amount of compensation paid was EUR 287,144.59. The research carried out has highlighted how, in a broad jurisprudential context, the damage caused by the violation of the right related to informed consent is considered, and how it impacts on the economic compensation of damages. Additionally, it showed that the areas most affected by the information deficit are those related to the performance of surgical activities, which are characterized by greater invasiveness and a higher risk of adverse events. The data reported underline the exigency to consider informed consent not as a mere documentary allegation but as an essential moment in the construction of a valid therapeutic alliance, which is also useful for avoiding unnecessary litigation that is becoming increasingly burdensome for healthcare systems all over the world

    Trends in Illicit Cannabis Potency based on the Analysis of Law Enforcement Seizures in the Southern Area of Rome

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    Cannabis remains the most illicitly produced and consumed substance worldwide, and the average trans-Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) content in cannabis products (marijuana, hashish) has increased over time. This paper presents data about THC concentration in cannabis resin samples seized by law enforcement from 2015 to 2022 in the southern area of Rome (Italy). From 2015 to 2022, more than 1000 hashish samples were analyzed; the average THC content was 18.0% and dramatically increased from 13.7% (2015) to 27.1% (2022). The potency of THC in some samples characterized by unusual shape and color was higher than 24% and, in a few cases, higher than 40%. The age group most involved in seizures of cannabis resin concerned males aged between 15 and 36 years old. The spread of this phenomenon increases the risk of adverse health outcomes. Many observational studies compare the increased cannabis potency with the onset of psychosis, depression, anxiety and cannabis use disorders (CUDs), mainly in young adults. THC-potency monitoring provides data that can be helpful to create a network of communication and interaction between universities, and legislative and public health institutions to support education, awareness and surveillance related to cannabis abuse

    Carbohydrate-Deficient Transferrin (CDT) as a Biomarker of Alcohol Abuse: A Retrospective Study of the Italian Drinking Trend among Drivers from 2016 to 2022

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    Alcohol abuse is still one of the leading causes of death worldwide. Early diagnosis of alcohol abuse enables preventive intervention on the effects and risks associated with its consumption. Carbohydrate-deficient transferrin (CDT) is one of the most reliable biomarkers of chronic alcohol misuse. We retrospectively studied a population of 12,624 subjects who had their driving license suspended for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs from 2016 to 2022. The analytical determination of CDT was performed following a certified high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) method. Data were split by year, age and gender. The majority of subjects with positive %CDT were male, although the trend of positivity was similar between males and females. A steady increase in both the number of tests performed and the number of positives was observed over the years. Patients aged 41–50 years had the highest prevalence, followed by 51–60, 31–40 and 18–30 years. CDT continues to be a steady marker for diagnosis of alcohol abuse in the majority of cases. Data emerging from our study are in line with the increasing national trends on traffic accidents, injuries and deaths related to alcohol and drug DUI (driving under the influence), requiring the implementation of preventive measures to limit this ever-growing phenomenon

    When the Helmet Is Not Enough: Forensic Multidisciplinary Reconstruction of a Deadly Motorcycle Accident

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    We report the case of a 54-year-old man who died in a motorcycle accident due to loss of control of the vehicle on a viaduct. No other vehicles were apparently involved, except for a car hit by the motorcycle after it fell. A post-mortem CT scan (computed tomography scan) was performed showing complex head trauma with a subarachnoid hemorrhage and multiple skull and facial bone fractures. A forensic cinematic reconstruction performed by an engineer was needed to exclude other incident causes other than the loss of control. The multidisciplinary approach that included autopsy findings, a cinematic reconstruction, a helmet test and an examination played a key role in clarifying the dynamics of the accident, allowing us to explain how the death occurred despite the motorcyclist’s helmet use. The cause of death was identified as a penetrating head trauma with cerebral material exposure, produced by the impact of the head against a fixed bolt in the guardrail base. Despite the use of the helmet, the impact force was enough to render the protection ineffective and allowed the bolt to penetrate through the helmet and the skull

    Legionella and Air Transport: A Study of Environmental Contamination

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    Introduction: There is growing interest in the public health and transport sectors in research into exposure to biological hazards, considering not only the risks arising from inter-human contagion, but also those related to exposure to the flight environment itself. The aim of this paper is to report data from an investigation into the water and air-conditioning systems of commercial aircraft for the presence of Legionella contamination, with a total of 645 water samples taken during the period 2007–2021. Methods: The investigation involved 126 aircraft of six different commercial aircraft types: MD80, Airbus A320 F, Embraer 175/190, AIRBUS A330, Boeing 767 and Boeing 777. Water samples were taken from the water systems (toilet taps, galley and boilers). Each sample was preliminarily subjected to an evaluation of the following parameters: temperature, pH and residual chlorine. The ScanVit® Legionella kit was used for bacteria detection and enumeration. Results: Samples were considered positive if the number of colony-forming units/liter (CFU/L) was >100. For the entire observation period, 45% of the investigated aircraft tested positive. Regarding the overall number of samples analyzed, 68.4% (441/645) were below 100 CFU/L, and thus within the limits allowed by the Italian Guidelines. Conclusions: Water system contamination with Legionella in the air transport field is a real public health issue that should not be underestimated given the heavy passenger traffic. Infection should be considered an occupational risk to which crew members are exposed
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