ResearchPad - evidence-based-medicine https://www.researchpad.co Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[A low caffeine dose improves maximal strength, but not relative muscular endurance in either heavier-or lighter-loads, or perceptions of effort or discomfort at task failure in females]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_8324 The body of literature considering caffeine as an ergogenic aid has primarily considered typically aerobic based exercise, male participants and moderate-to large-caffeine doses. With this in mind the aim of this project was to explore the effects of a low-caffeine dose upon maximal voluntary contraction (MVC) and muscular endurance (time to task failure, TTF) at heavier-and lighter-loads.MethodsNineteen physically active, habitual caffeine consuming females randomly performed four testing conditions; two with a low-dose of caffeine (100 mg equating to mean = 1.5 ± 0.18 mg·kg−1) and two placebo conditions, where they performed a maximal strength test (MVC) knee extension at 45° followed by a task of relative muscular endurance (sustained isometric contraction for TTF) using either heavier-(70% MVC) and lighter-(30% MVC) loads. Each participant performed each load condition following both caffeine and placebo consumption. Immediately following cessation of the muscular endurance test participants were asked to report their rating of perceived effort (RPE) and rating of perceived discomfort (RPD).ResultsAnalyses revealed a significant effect for caffeine upon MVC compared to placebo (p = 0.007). We also found a significantly greater TTF for the lighter-compared to the heavier-load condition (p < 0.0001); however, there was no significant effect comparing caffeine to placebo (p = 0.2368), but insufficient precision of estimates to infer equivalence in either lighter-(p = 0.750) or heavier-load (p = 0.262) conditions. There were no statistically significant effects for caffeine compared with placebo, or lighter-compared with heavier-loads, for RPE and RPD (all p > 0.05). RPE was statistically equivalent between caffeine and placebo for both lighter-(p = 0.007) and heavier-load (p = 0.002) conditions and RPD for heavier-(p = 0.006) but not lighter-load (p = 0.136).DiscussionThis is the first study to demonstrate a positive effect on strength from a low caffeine dose in female participants. However, it is unclear whether caffeine positively impacts upon relative muscular endurance in either heavier-or lighter-loads. Further, both RPE and RPD appear to be relatively similar during isometric tasks performed to task failure independently of caffeine supplementation or load. These findings may have implications for persons wishing to avoid side-effects or withdrawal symptoms associated with larger caffeine doses whilst still attaining the positive strength responses. ]]> <![CDATA[Seroprevalence and Risk Factors For Infection With Equine Coronavirus in Healthy Horses in the USA]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/N3d4ca578-e0c3-42ef-a9df-70a89cc95b5a ]]> <![CDATA[Assessment methods and services for older people with cancer in the United Kingdom]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/N07dbc666-a3cb-4476-8392-7928b203128f

BACKGROUND

National cancer strategy calls for comprehensive assessments for older people but current practice across the United Kingdom is not well described.

AIM

To identify current assessment methods and access to relevant supporting services for older people with cancer.

METHODS

A web-based survey (SurveyMonkey) targeting health professionals (oncologists, cancer surgeons, geriatricians, nurses and allied health professionals) was distributed January-April 2016 via United Kingdom nationally recognised professional societies. Responses were analysed in frequencies and percentages. Chi Square was used to compare differences in responses between different groups.

RESULTS

640 health care professionals responded. Only 14.1% often/always involved geriatricians and 52.0% often/always involved general practitioners in assessments. When wider assessments were used, they always/often influenced decision-making (40.5%) or at least sometimes (34.1%). But 30.5%-44.3% did not use structured assessment methods. Most clinicians favoured clinical history taking. Few used scoring tools and few wished to use them in the future. Most had urgent access to palliative care but only a minority had urgent access to other key supporting professionals (e.g. geriatricians, social workers, psychiatry). 69.6% were interested in developing Geriatric Oncology services with geriatricians.

CONCLUSION

There is variability in assessment methods for older people with cancer across the United Kingdom and variation in perceived access to supporting services. Clinical history taking was preferred to scoring systems. Fostering closer links with geriatricians appears supported.

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<![CDATA[Let’s talk about pain catastrophizing measures: an item content analysis]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/N0761d7d6-f628-497b-9302-933eb994db6c

Background

Concerns have been raised about whether self-report measures of pain catastrophizing reflect the construct as defined in the cognitive-behavioral literature. We investigated the content of these self-report measures; that is, whether items assess the construct ‘pain catastrophizing’ and not other theoretical constructs (i.e., related constructs or pain outcomes) using the discriminant content validity method.

Method

Items (n = 58) of six pain catastrophizing measures were complemented with items (n = 34) from questionnaires measuring pain-related worrying, vigilance, pain severity, distress, and disability. Via an online survey, 94 participants rated to what extent each item was relevant for assessing pain catastrophizing, defined as “to view or present pain or pain-related problems as considerably worse than they actually are” and other relevant constructs (pain-related worrying, vigilance, pain severity, distress, and disability).

Results

Data were analyzed using Bayesian hierarchical models. The results revealed that the items from pain-related worrying, vigilance, pain severity, distress, and disability questionnaires were distinctively related to their respective constructs. This was not observed for the items from the pain catastrophizing questionnaires. The content of the pain catastrophizing measures was equally well, or even better, captured by pain-related worrying or pain-related distress.

Conclusion

Based upon current findings, a recommendation may be to develop a novel pain catastrophizing questionnaire. However, we argue that pain catastrophizing cannot be assessed by self-report questionnaires. Pain catastrophizing requires contextual information, and expert judgment, which cannot be provided by self-report questionnaires. We argue for a person-centered approach, and propose to rename ‘pain catastrophizing’ measures in line with what is better measured: ‘pain-related worrying’.

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<![CDATA[Validity of studies suggesting preoperative chemotherapy for resectable thoracic esophageal cancer: A critical appraisal of randomized trials]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/Nb8205cba-c672-478e-8f84-510bc2fc04fb

BACKGROUND

In 2015, Kidane published a Cochrane review and meta-analysis to summarise the impact of preoperative chemotherapy versus surgery alone on survival for resectable thoracic esophageal cancer. The authors concluded that preoperative chemotherapy improved overall survival (OS).

AIM

The aim of this article was to assess the validity of the three most powerful studies included in the Cochrane review and the meta-analysis supporting the advantage of preoperative chemotherapy and to investigate the impact of an exclusion of these three studies on the result of the meta-analysis.

METHODS

OS was selected as the endpoint of interest. Among the ten included papers which analysed this endpoint, we identified the three publications with the highest weights influencing the final result. The validity of these papers was analysed using the CONSORT checklist for randomized controlled trials. We performed a new meta-analysis without the three studies to assess their impact on the general result of the original meta-analysis.

RESULTS

The three analysed studies revealed several inconsistencies. Inappropriate answers were found in up to one third of the items of the CONSORT checklist. Missing information about sample-size calculation and power, unclear or inadequate randomisation, and missing blinded set-up were the most common findings. When the three criticized studies were excluded in the meta-analysis, preoperative chemotherapy showed no benefit in OS.

CONCLUSION

The three most powerful publications in the Cochrane review show substantial deficits. After the exclusion of these studies from the meta-analysis, preoperative chemotherapy does not seem to result in an advantage in survival. We suggest a more critical appraisal regarding the validity of single studies.

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<![CDATA[Physician characteristics associated with proper assessment of overstated conclusions in research abstracts: A secondary analysis of a randomized controlled trial]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c6448e6d5eed0c484c2f14b

Objectives

Little is known about the physician characteristics associated with appraisal skills of research evidence, especially the assessment of the validity of study methodology. This study aims to explore physician characteristics associated with proper assessment of overstated conclusions in research abstracts.

Design

A secondary analysis of a randomized controlled trial.

Setting and participants

We recruited 567 volunteers from the Japan Primary Care Association.

Methods

Participants were randomly assigned to read the abstract of a research paper, with or without an overstatement, and to rate its validity. Our primary outcome was proper assessment of the validity of its conclusions. We investigated the association of physician characteristics and proper assessment using logistic regression models and evaluated the interaction between the associated characteristics and overstatement.

Results

We found significant associations between proper assessment and post-graduate year (odds ratio [OR] = 0.67, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.49 to 0.91, for every 10-year increase) and research experience as a primary investigator (PI; OR = 2.97, 95% CI 1.65 to 5.34). Post-graduate year and PI had significant interaction with overstatement (P = 0.015 and < 0.001, respectively). Among participants who read abstracts without an overstatement, post-graduate year was not associated with proper assessment (OR = 1.04, 95% CI 0.82 to 1.33), and PI experience was associated with lower scores of the validity (OR = 0.58, 95% CI 0.35 to 0.96).

Conclusion

Physicians who have been in practice longer should be trained in distinguishing overstatements in abstract conclusions. Physicians with research experience might be informed that they tend to rate the validity of research lower regardless of the presence or absence of overstatements.

Trial registration

UMIN000026269.

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<![CDATA[Individualized Cost-Effectiveness Analysis]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da1cab0ee8fa60b7d66d

John Ioannidis and Alan Garber discuss how to use incremental cost-effectiveness ratios (ICER) and related metrics so they can be useful for decision-making at the individual level, whether used by clinicians or individual patients.

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<![CDATA[Inclusion of Ethical Issues in Dementia Guidelines: A Thematic Text Analysis]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9f0ab0ee8fa60b6e279

Background

Clinical practice guidelines (CPGs) aim to improve professionalism in health care. However, current CPG development manuals fail to address how to include ethical issues in a systematic and transparent manner. The objective of this study was to assess the representation of ethical issues in general CPGs on dementia care.

Methods and Findings

To identify national CPGs on dementia care, five databases of guidelines were searched and national psychiatric associations were contacted in August 2011 and in June 2013. A framework for the assessment of the identified CPGs' ethical content was developed on the basis of a prior systematic review of ethical issues in dementia care. Thematic text analysis and a 4-point rating score were employed to assess how ethical issues were addressed in the identified CPGs. Twelve national CPGs were included. Thirty-one ethical issues in dementia care were identified by the prior systematic review. The proportion of these 31 ethical issues that were explicitly addressed by each CPG ranged from 22% to 77%, with a median of 49.5%. National guidelines differed substantially with respect to (a) which ethical issues were represented, (b) whether ethical recommendations were included, (c) whether justifications or citations were provided to support recommendations, and (d) to what extent the ethical issues were explained.

Conclusions

Ethical issues were inconsistently addressed in national dementia guidelines, with some guidelines including most and some including few ethical issues. Guidelines should address ethical issues and how to deal with them to help the medical profession understand how to approach care of patients with dementia, and for patients, their relatives, and the general public, all of whom might seek information and advice in national guidelines. There is a need for further research to specify how detailed ethical issues and their respective recommendations can and should be addressed in dementia guidelines.

Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary

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<![CDATA[Validating a Shortened Depression Scale (10 Item CES-D) among HIV-Positive People in British Columbia, Canada]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da5aab0ee8fa60b8fbdf

Objective

To establish the reliability and validity of a shortened (10-item) depression scale used among HIV-positive patients enrolled in the Drug Treatment Program in British Columbia, Canada.

Methods

The 10-item CES-D (Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale) was examined among 563 participants who initiated antiretroviral therapy (ART) between August 1, 1996 and June 30, 2002. Internal consistency of the scale was measured by Cronbach’s alpha. Using the original CES-D 20 as primary criteria, comparisons were made using the Kappa statistic. Predictive accuracy of CES-D 10 was assessed by calculating sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive values and negative predictive values. Factor analysis was also performed to determine if the CES-D 10 contained the same factors of positive and negative affect found in the original development of the CES-D.

Results

The correlation between the original and the shortened scale is very high (Spearman correlation coefficient  = 0.97 (P<0.001). Internal consistency reliability coefficients of the CES-D 10 were satisfactory (Cronbach α = 0.88). The CES-D 10 showed comparable accuracy to the original CES-D 20 in classifying participants with depressive symptoms (Kappa = 0.82, P<0.001). Sensitivity of CES-D 10 was 91%; specificity was 92%; and positive predictive value was 92%. Factor analysis demonstrates that CES-D 10 contains the same underlying factors of positive and negative affect found in the original development of the CES-D 20.

Conclusion

The 10-item CES-D is a comparable tool to measure depressive symptoms among HIV-positive research participants.

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<![CDATA[Social Network Analysis in Healthcare Settings: A Systematic Scoping Review]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da34ab0ee8fa60b85c77

Background

Social network analysis (SNA) has been widely used across a range of disciplines but is most commonly applied to help improve the effectiveness and efficiency of decision making processes in commercial organisations. We are utilising SNA to inform the development and implementation of tailored behaviour-change interventions to improve the uptake of evidence into practice in the English National Health Service. To inform this work, we conducted a systematic scoping review to identify and evaluate the use of SNA as part of an intervention to support the implementation of change in healthcare settings.

Methods and Findings

We searched ten bibliographic databases to October 2011. We also searched reference lists, hand searched selected journals and websites, and contacted experts in the field. To be eligible for the review, studies had to describe and report the results of an SNA performed with healthcare professionals (e.g. doctors, nurses, pharmacists, radiographers etc.) and others involved in their professional social networks. We included 52 completed studies, reported in 62 publications. Almost all of the studies were limited to cross sectional descriptions of networks; only one involved using the results of the SNA as part of an intervention to change practice.

Conclusions

We found very little evidence for the potential of SNA being realised in healthcare settings. However, it seems unlikely that networks are less important in healthcare than other settings. Future research should seek to go beyond the merely descriptive to implement and evaluate SNA-based interventions.

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<![CDATA[Effect of 8-hydroxyquinoline and derivatives on human neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cells under high glucose]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db06ab0ee8fa60bc8709

8-Hydroxyquinoline and derivatives exhibit multifunctional properties, including antioxidant, antineurodegenerative, anticancer, anti-inflammatory and antidiabetic activities. In biological systems, elevation of intracellular calcium can cause calpain activation, leading to cell death. Here, the effect of 8-hydroxyquinoline and derivatives (5-chloro-7-iodo-8-hydroxyquinoline or clioquinol and 8-hydroxy-5-nitroquinoline or nitroxoline) on calpain-dependent (calpain-calpastatin) pathways in human neuroblastoma (SH-SY5Y) cells was investigated. 8-Hydroxyquinoline and derivatives ameliorated high glucose toxicity in SH-SY5Y cells. The investigated compounds, particularly clioquinol, attenuated the increased expression of calpain, even under high-glucose conditions. 8-Hydroxyquinoline and derivatives thus adversely affected the promotion of neuronal cell death by high glucose via the calpain-calpastatin signaling pathways. These findings support the beneficial effects of 8-hydroxyquinolines for further therapeutic development.

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<![CDATA[The Forgotten Role of Alcohol: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of the Clinical Efficacy and Perceived Role of Chlorhexidine in Skin Antisepsis]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da8aab0ee8fa60b9d85a

Background

Skin antisepsis is a simple and effective measure to prevent infections. The efficacy of chlorhexidine is actively discussed in the literature on skin antisepsis. However, study outcomes due to chlorhexidine-alcohol combinations are often attributed to chlorhexidine alone. Thus, we sought to review the efficacy of chlorhexidine for skin antisepsis and the extent of a possible misinterpretation of evidence.

Methods

We performed a systematic literature review of clinical trials and systematic reviews investigating chlorhexidine compounds for blood culture collection, vascular catheter insertion and surgical skin preparation. We searched PubMed, CINAHL, the Cochrane Library, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality website, several clinical trials registries and a manufacturer website. We extracted data on study design, antiseptic composition, and the following outcomes: blood culture contamination, catheter colonisation, catheter-related bloodstream infection and surgical site infection. We conducted meta-analyses of the clinical efficacy of chlorhexidine compounds and reviewed the appropriateness of the authors′ attribution.

Results

In all three application areas and for all outcomes, we found good evidence favouring chlorhexidine-alcohol over aqueous competitors, but not over competitors combined with alcohols. For blood cultures and surgery, we found no evidence supporting chlorhexidine alone. For catheters, we found evidence in support of chlorhexidine alone for preventing catheter colonisation, but not for preventing bloodstream infection. A range of 29 to 43% of articles attributed outcomes solely to chlorhexidine when the combination with alcohol was in fact used. Articles with ambiguous attribution were common (8–35%). Unsubstantiated recommendations for chlorhexidine alone instead of chlorhexidine-alcohol were identified in several practice recommendations and evidence-based guidelines.

Conclusions

Perceived efficacy of chlorhexidine is often in fact based on evidence for the efficacy of the chlorhexidine-alcohol combination. The role of alcohol has frequently been overlooked in evidence assessments. This has broader implications for knowledge translation as well as potential implications for patient safety.

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<![CDATA[MAPPIN'SDM – The Multifocal Approach to Sharing in Shared Decision Making]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db0cab0ee8fa60bca95a

Background

The wide scale permeation of health care by the shared decision making concept (SDM) reflects its relevance and advanced stage of development. An increasing number of studies evaluating the efficacy of SDM use instruments based on various sub-constructs administered from different viewpoints. However, as the concept has never been captured in operable core definition it is quite difficult to link these parts of evidence.

This study aims at investigating interrelations of SDM indicators administered from different perspectives.

Method

A comprehensive inventory was developed mapping judgements from different perspectives (observer, doctor, patient) and constructs (behavior, perception) referring to three units (doctor, patient, doctor-patient-dyad) and an identical set of SDM-indicators. The inventory adopted the existing approaches, but added additional observer foci (patient and doctor-patient-dyad) and relevant indicators hitherto neglected by existing instruments. The complete inventory comprising a doctor-patient-questionnaire and an observer-instrument was applied to 40 decision consultations from 10 physicians from different medical fields. Convergent validities were calculated on the basis of Pearson correlation coefficients.

Results

Reliabilities for all scales were high to excellent. No correlations were found between observer and patients or physicians neither for means nor for single items. Judgements of doctors and patients were moderately related. Correlations between the observer scales and within the subjective perspectives were high. Inter-perspective agreement was not related to SDM performance or patient activity.

Conclusion

The study demonstrates the contribution to involvement made by each of the relevant perspectives and emphasizes the need for an inter-subjective approach regarding SDM measurement.

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<![CDATA[Quality of Reporting of Bioequivalence Trials Comparing Generic to Brand Name Drugs: A Methodological Systematic Review]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da7aab0ee8fa60b983ac

Background

Generic drugs are used by millions of patients for economic reasons, so their evaluation must be highly transparent.

Objective

To assess the quality of reporting of bioequivalence trials comparing generic to brand-name drugs.

Methodology/Principal Findings

PubMed was searched for reports of bioequivalence trials comparing generic to brand-name drugs between January 2005 and December 2008. Articles were included if the aim of the study was to assess the bioequivalency of generic and brand-name drugs. We excluded case studies, pharmaco-economic evaluations, and validation dosage assays of drugs. We evaluated whether important information about funding, methodology, location of trials, and participants were reported. We also assessed whether the criteria required by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the European Medicine Agency (EMA) to conclude bioequivalence were reported and that the conclusions were in agreement with the results. We identified 134 potentially relevant articles but eliminated 55 because the brand-name or generic drug status of the reference drug was unknown. Thus, we evaluated 79 articles. The funding source and location of the trial were reported in 41% and 56% of articles, respectively. The type of statistical analysis was reported in 94% of articles, but the methods to generate the randomization sequence and to conceal allocation were reported in only 15% and 5%, respectively. In total, 65 articles of single-dose trials (89%) concluded bioequivalence. Of these, 20 (31%) did not report the 3 criteria within the limits required by the FDA and 11 (17%) did not report the 2 criteria within the limits required by the EMA.

Conclusions/Significance

Important information to judge the validity and relevance of results are frequently missing in published reports of trials assessing generic drugs. The quality of reporting of such trials is in need of improvement.

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<![CDATA[Rural Doctors’ Views on and Experiences with Evidence-Based Medicine: The FrEEDoM Qualitative Study]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da77ab0ee8fa60b97431

Background

Evidence-based medicine is the integration of individual clinical expertise, best external evidence and patient values which was introduced more than two decades ago. Yet, primary care physicians in Malaysia face unique barriers in accessing scientific literature and applying it to their clinical practice.

Aim

This study aimed to explore the views and experiences of rural doctors’ about evidence-based medicine in their daily clinical practice in a rural primary care setting.

Methods

Qualitative methodology was used. The interviews were conducted in June 2013 in two rural health clinics in Malaysia. The participants were recruited using purposive sampling. Four focus group discussions with 15 medical officers and three individual in-depth interviews with family medicine specialists were carried out. All interviews were conducted using a topic guide and were audio-recorded, transcribed verbatim, checked and analyzed using a thematic approach.

Results

Key themes identified were: (1) doctors viewed evidence-based medicine mainly as statistics, research and guidelines, (2) reactions to evidence-based medicine were largely negative, (3) doctors relied on specialists, peers, guidelines and non-evidence based internet sources for information, (4) information sources were accessed using novel methods such as mobile applications and (5) there are several barriers to evidence-based practice, including doctor-, evidence-based medicine-, patient- and system-related factors. These included inadequacies in knowledge, attitude, management support, time and access to evidence-based information sources. Participants recommended the use of online services to support evidence-based practice in the rural settings.

Conclusion

The level of evidence-based practice is low in the rural setting due to poor awareness, knowledge, attitude and resources. Doctors use non-evidence based sources and access them through new methods such as messaging applications. Further research is recommended to develop and evaluate interventions to overcome the identified barriers.

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<![CDATA[Impact of Increasing Capacity for Generating and Using Research on Maternal and Perinatal Health Practices in South East Asia (SEA-ORCHID Project)]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da1aab0ee8fa60b7c63d

Background

Maternal and neonatal mortality and morbidity remain unacceptably high in many low and middle income countries. SEA-ORCHID was a five year international collaborative project in South East Asia which aimed to determine whether health care and health outcomes for mothers and babies could be improved by developing capacity for research generation, synthesis and use.

Methods

Nine hospitals in Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines and Thailand participated in SEA-ORCHID. These hospitals were supported by researchers from three Australian centres. Health care practices and outcomes were assessed for 1000 women at each hospital both before and after the intervention. The capacity development intervention was tailored to the needs and context of each hospital and delivered over an 18 month period. Main outcomes included adherence to forms of care likely to be beneficial and avoidance of forms of care likely to be ineffective or harmful.

Results

We observed substantial variation in clinical practice change between sites. The capacity development intervention had a positive impact on some care practices across all countries, including increased family support during labour and decreased perineal shaving before birth, but in some areas there was no significant change in practice and a few beneficial practices were followed less often.

Conclusion

The results of SEA-ORCHID demonstrate that investing in developing capacity for research use, synthesis and generation can lead to improvements in maternal and neonatal health practice and highlight the difficulty of implementing evidence-based practice change.

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<![CDATA[Performance of interferon-γ release assay in the diagnosis of tuberculous lymphadenitis: a meta-analysis]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db58ab0ee8fa60bdeb62

Background

The diagnostic values of interferon-gamma release assays (IGRA) in tuberculosis (TB) vary a lot with different site of infections, with especially higher sensitivities in chronic forms of TB such as tuberculosis of the lymph node. We conducted a meta-analysis to comprehensively evaluate the overall accuracy of diagnostic IGRA for tuberculous lymphadenitis.

Methods

Pubmed, Web of Science, EMBASE, Wanfang and CNKI databases up to February 17, 2017 were searched to identify published studies. The study quality was evaluated using the QUADAS-2 checklist. The pooled estimates of diagnostic parameters were generated using a bivariate random-effects model and summary receiver operating characteristic (SROC) curves were used to summarize global performance.

Results

A total of ten qualified studies, performed in Korea or China, including 1,084 patients, were enrolled in this meta-analysis. The pooled estimates of diagnostic accuracy were as follows: sensitivity, 0.89 (95% CI [0.85–0.92]); specificity, 0.81 (95% CI [0.77–0.83]); positive likelihood ratio (PLR), 4.25 (95% CI [2.79–6.47]); negative likelihood ratio (NLR), 0.16 (95% CI [0.12–0.22]); and area under the curve (AUC) was 0.93. According to subgroup analyses, studies conducted using QuantiFERON-TB, in Korean population and focusing on cervical lymphadenitis exhibited relative higher specificity while lower sensitivity. No evidence of publication bias was identified.

Conclusions

IGRA exhibits high diagnostic accuracy in tuberculous lymphadenitis. The diagnostic value of IGRA differed by different IGRA methods, ethnicity and lymphadenitis location. Our conclusion may be more applicable to population from TB prevalent areas.

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<![CDATA[A Cluster-Randomised Trial of Staff Education to Improve the Quality of Life of People with Dementia Living in Residential Care: The DIRECT Study]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db4cab0ee8fa60bdaa3c

Background

The Dementia In Residential care: EduCation intervention Trial (DIRECT) was conducted to determine if delivery of education designed to meet the perceived need of GPs and care staff improves the quality of life of participants with dementia living in residential care.

Methodology/Principal Findings

This cluster-randomised controlled trial was conducted in 39 residential aged care facilities in the metropolitan area of Perth, Western Australia. 351 care facility residents aged 65 years and older with Mini-Mental State Examination ≤24, their GPs and facility staff participated. Flexible education designed to meet the perceived needs of learners was delivered to GPs and care facility staff in intervention groups. The primary outcome of the study was self-rated quality of life of participants with dementia, measured using the QOL-Alzheimer's Disease Scale (QOL-AD) at 4 weeks and 6 months after the conclusion of the intervention. Analysis accounted for the effect of clustering by using multi-level regression analysis. Education of GPs or care facility staff did not affect the primary outcome at either 4 weeks or 6 months. In a post hoc analysis excluding facilities in which fewer than 50% of staff attended an education session, self-rated QOL-AD scores were 6.14 points (adjusted 95%CI 1.14, 11.15) higher at four-week follow-up among residents in facilities randomly assigned to the education intervention.

Conclusion

The education intervention directed at care facilities or GPs did not improve the quality of life ratings of participants with dementia as a group. This may be explained by the poor adherence to the intervention programme, as participants with dementia living in facilities where staff participated at least minimally seemed to benefit.

Trial Registration

ANZCTR.org.au ACTRN12607000417482

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<![CDATA[Defining Research to Improve Health Systems]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9dbab0ee8fa60b67b7b

Robert Terry and colleagues present working definitions of operational research, implementation research, and health systems research within the context of research to strengthen health systems.

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<![CDATA[Bias in Amputation Research; Impact of Subjects Missed from a Prospective Study]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989daeeab0ee8fa60bc0693

For research findings to be generalized, a sample must be representative of the actual population of interest. Lower limb amputation is most frequently performed in older patients with vascular disease, a population that is often under-represented in research. The aim of this study was to explore the impact of selection bias by comparing characteristics from a sample included in a prospective study of phantom pain with the actual population who underwent amputation. Only 27% of all potential patients were referred during the first year of the prospective study. The referred patients were 8 years younger (p<0.001) and less likely to have had amputation because of a vascular condition, diabetes or infection (p = 0.003) than those not referred. There was also a significant difference in one year survival between the groups; 67% of referred patients survived compared with just 40% of non-referred patients (p = 0.004). The biased population in the phantom pain study may have resulted in an underestimation of phantom pain in the original study and subsequent protective factors should be considered within the context of the younger population reported. Selection bias is common in amputation research, and research methods to minimize its impact must be given greater attention.

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