ResearchPad - patients Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[Investigating barriers and challenges to the integrated management of neglected tropical skin diseases in an endemic setting in Nigeria]]> Community perceptions of causation of neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) of the skin may play an important role in access to or utilization of health services. The World Health Organization (WHO) has recommended empowerment of populations affected by or at risk of NTDs in control interventions. Furthermore, the WHO recommends that social mobilisation needs to be maintained in order to create demand for integrated management of skin NTDs and to address specific community aspects and concerns related to the diseases. There are no studies on community knowledge, attitudes and practices (KAP) on skin NTDs co-occurring in the same community in Nigeria. We surveyed community members and health workers and also held group discussions with community members, health workers and individuals with lymphatic filariasis and Buruli ulcer in order to assess their understanding of the causes, treatment and effects of the skin NTDs (leprosy, Buruli ulcer and lymphatic filariasis) which were all occurring in the study communities. There was a shared understanding that these NTDs were caused by germ/infection or through witchcraft/curse/poison. Also, a substantial proportion of the community believed that these conditions are not amenable to treatment. The focus group discussions reinforced these findings.

<![CDATA[Retrospectively ECG-gated helical vs. non-ECG-synchronized high-pitch CTA of the aortic root for TAVI planning]]> Multidetector computed tomography (MDCT) plays a key role in patient assessment prior to transcatheter aortic valve implantation (TAVI). However, to date no consensus has been established on what is the optimal pre-procedural imaging protocol. Variability in pre-TAVI acquisition protocols may lead to discrepancies in aortic annulus measurements and may potentially influence prosthesis size selection.PurposeThe current study evaluates the magnitude of differences in aortic annulus measurements using max-systolic, end-diastolic, and non-ECG-synchronized imaging, as well as the impact of method on prosthesis size selection.Material and methodsFifty consecutive TAVI-candidates, who underwent retrospectively-ECG-gated CT angiography (CTA) of the aortic root, directly followed by non-ECG-synchronized high-pitch CT of the entire aorta, were retrospectively included. Aortic root dimensions were assessed at each 10% increment of the R-R interval (0–100%) and on the non-ECG-synchronized scan. Dimensional changes within the cardiac cycle were evaluated using a 1-way repeated ANOVA. Agreement in measurements between max-systole, end-diastole and non-ECG-synchronized scans was assessed with Bland-Altman analysis.ResultsMaximal dimensions of the aortic root structures and minimum annulus-coronary ostia distances were measured during systole. Max-systolic measurements were significantly and substantially larger than end-diastolic (p<0.001) and non-ECG-synchronized measurements (p<0.001). Due to these discrepancies, the three methods resulted in the same prosthesis size selection in only 48–62% of patients.ConclusionsThe systematic differences between max-systolic, end-diastolic and non-ECG-synchronized measurements for relevant aortic annular dimensions are both statistically significant and clinically relevant. Imaging strategy impacts prosthesis size selection in nearly half the TAVI-candidates. End-diastolic and non-ECG-synchronized imaging does not provide optimal information for prosthesis size selection. Systolic image acquisition is necessary for assessment of maximal annular dimensions and minimum annulus-coronary ostia distances. ]]> <![CDATA[Association between attending exercise-based cardiac rehabilitation and cardiovascular risk factors at one-year post myocardial infarction]]> Randomized trials confirm the benefits of exercise-based cardiac rehabilitation on cardiovascular risk factors. Whether exercise-based cardiac rehabilitation provides the same favourable effects in real-life cardiac rehabilitation settings, in the modern era of myocardial infarction treatment, is less well known. We examined the association between attending exercise-based cardiac rehabilitation and improvements in cardiovascular risk factors at one-year post myocardial infarction in patients included in the Swedish heart disease registry, SWEDEHEART.MethodsIn this retrospective registry-based cohort study, we included 19 136 patients post myocardial infarction (75% men, 62.8±8.7 years) who were registered in SWEDEHEART between 2011 and 2013. The association between attending exercise-based cardiac rehabilitation (43% participation rate) and changes in cardiovascular risk profile between baseline and one-year follow-up was assessed using multivariable regression analysis adjusting for age, comorbidities and medication.ResultsAttenders more often reported to have stopped smoking (men 64% vs 50%; women 64% vs 53%, p<0.001 for both, only smokers at baseline considered), be more physically active (men 3.9±2.5 vs 3.4±2.7 days/week; women 3.8±2.6 vs 3.0±2.8 days/week, p<0.001 for both) and achieved a slightly larger reduction in triglycerides (men -0.2±0.8 vs -0.1±0.9 mmol/L, p = 0.001; women -0.1±0.6 vs 0.0±0.8 mmol/L, p = 0.01) at one-year compared to non-attenders. Male attenders gained less weight (+0.0±5.7 vs +0.3±5.7 kg, p = 0.01) while female attenders achieved better lipid control (total cholesterol -1.2±1.4 vs -0.9±1.4 mmol/L, p<0.001; low-density lipoprotein -1.2±1.2 vs -0.9 ±1.2 mmol/L, p<0.001) compared to non-attenders.ConclusionsIn an unselected registry cohort of patients post myocardial infarction, compared to non-attenders those attending exercise-based cardiac rehabilitation achieved significantly larger improvements in cardiovascular risk factors at one-year after the acute event. ]]> <![CDATA[Managing possible serious bacterial infection of young infants where referral is not possible: Lessons from the early implementation experience in Kushtia District learning laboratory, Bangladesh]]> Serious infections account for 25% of global newborn deaths annually, most in low-resource settings where hospital-based treatment is not accessible or feasible. In Bangladesh, one-third of neonatal deaths are attributable to serious infection; in 2014, the government adopted new policy for outpatient management of danger signs indicating possible serious bacterial infections (PSBI) when referral was not possible. We conducted implementation research to understand what it takes for a district health team to implement quality outpatient PSBI management per national guidelines.MethodsPSBI management was introduced as part of the Comprehensive Newborn Care Package in 2015. The study piloted this package through government health systems with limited partner support to inform scale-up efforts. Data collection included facility register reviews for cases seen at primary level facilities; facility readiness and provider knowledge and skills assessments; household surveys capturing caregiver knowledge of newborn danger signs and care-seeking for newborn illness; and follow-up case tracking, capturing treatment adherence and outcomes. Analysis consisted of descriptive statistics.ResultsOver the 15-month implementation period, 1432 young infants received care, of which 649 (45%) were classified as PSBI. Estimated coverage of care-seeking increased from 22% to 42% during the implementation period. Although facility readiness and providers’ skills increased, providers’ adherence to guidelines was not optimal. Among locally managed PSBI cases, 75% completed the oral antibiotic course and 15% received the fourth day follow-up. Care-seeking remained high among private providers (95%), predominantly village health doctors (over 80%).ConclusionsFacility readiness, including health care provider knowledge and skills were strengthened; future efforts should focus on improving provider adherence to guidelines. Social and behavior change strategies targeting families and communities should explore shifting care-seeking from private, possibly less-qualified providers. Strategies to improve private sector management of PSBI cases and improved linkages between private and public sector providers could be explored. ]]> <![CDATA[Toward Precision Delivery of Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation in Coronavirus Disease 2019 Cardiorespiratory Failure]]> <![CDATA[Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation in the Treatment of Severe Pulmonary and Cardiac Compromise in Coronavirus Disease 2019: Experience with 32 Patients]]> As coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases surge worldwide, an urgent need exists to enhance our understanding of the role of extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) in the management of severely ill patients with COVID-19 who develop acute respiratory and cardiac compromise refractory to conventional therapy. The purpose of this manuscript is to review our initial clinical experience in 32 patients with confirmed COVID-19 treated with ECMO. A multi-institutional registry and database was created and utilized to assess all patients who were supported with ECMO provided by SpecialtyCare. Data captured included patient characteristics, pre-COVID-19 risk factors and comorbidities, confirmation of COVID-19 diagnosis, features of ECMO support, specific medications utilized to treat COVID-19, and short-term outcomes through hospital discharge. This analysis includes all of our patients with COVID-19 supported with ECMO, with an analytic window starting March 17, 2020, when our first COVID-19 patient was placed on ECMO, and ending April 9, 2020. During the 24 days of this study, 32 consecutive patients with COVID-19 were placed on ECMO at nine different hospitals. As of the time of analysis, 17 remain on ECMO, 10 died before or shortly after decannulation, and five are alive and extubated after removal from ECMO, with one of these five discharged from the hospital. Adjunctive medication in the surviving patients while on ECMO was as follows: four of five survivors received intravenous steroids, three of five survivors received antiviral medications (Remdesivir), two of five survivors were treated with anti-interleukin-6-receptor monoclonal antibodies (Tocilizumab or Sarilumab), and one of five survivors received hydroxychloroquine. An analysis of 32 COVID-19 patients with severe pulmonary compromise supported with ECMO suggests that ECMO may play a useful role in salvaging select critically ill patients with COVID-19. Additional patient experience and associated clinical and laboratory data must be obtained to further define the optimal role of ECMO in patients with COVID-19 and acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). These initial data may provide useful information to help define the best strategies to care for these challenging patients and may also provide a framework for much-needed future research about the use of ECMO to treat patients with COVID-19.

<![CDATA[Tablet-Based Limited Echocardiography to Reduce Sonographer Scan and Decontamination Time during the COVID-19 Pandemic]]> •Handheld ultrasound is an effective alternative in patients with COVID-19.•A majority of handheld studies are sufficient to guide management in these patients.•Study time is markedly reduced (79% less), thereby reducing sonographer exposure.•A contrast agent can be used to enhance image fidelity when necessary.

<![CDATA[Pretreatment Out-of-Pocket Expenses for Presumptive Multidrug-Resistant Tuberculosis Patients, India, 2016–2017]]>

In India, under the National Tuberculosis Elimination Programme, the government provides free treatment for multidrug-resistant tuberculosis; however, many patients seek care elsewhere, which is costly. To determine those out-of-pocket expenses, we interviewed 40 presumptive patients and found that they spent more than their median annual income before registering for the government program.

<![CDATA[Investigating discharge communication for chronic disease patients in three hospitals in India]]>


Poor discharge communication is associated with negative health outcomes in high-income countries. However, quality of discharge communication has received little attention in India and many other low and middle-income countries.

Primary objective

To investigate verbal and documented discharge communication for chronic non-communicable disease (NCD) patients.

Secondary objective

To explore the relationship between quality of discharge communication and health outcomes.



Prospective study.


Three public hospitals in Himachal Pradesh and Kerala states, India.


546 chronic NCD (chronic respiratory disease, cardiovascular disease or diabetes) patients. Piloted questionnaires were completed at admission, discharge and five and eighteen-week follow-up covering health status, discharge communication practices and health-seeking behaviour. Logistic regression was used to explore the relationship between quality of discharge communication and health outcomes.

Outcome measures


Patient recall and experiences of verbal and documented discharge communication.


Death, hospital readmission and self-reported deterioration of NCD/s.


All patients received discharge notes, predominantly on sheets of paper with basic pre-printed headings (71%) or no structure (19%); 31% of notes contained all the following information required for facilitating continuity of care: diagnosis, medication information, lifestyle advice, and follow-up instructions. Patient reports indicated notable variations in verbal information provided during discharge consultations; 50% received ongoing treatment/management information and 23% received lifestyle advice. Within 18 weeks of follow-up, 25 (5%) patients had died, 69 (13%) had been readmitted and 62 (11%) reported that their chronic NCD/s had deteriorated. Significant associations were found between low-quality documented discharge communication and death (AOR = 3.00; 95% CI 1.27,7.06) and low-quality verbal discharge communication and self-reported deterioration of chronic NCD/s (AOR = 0.46; 95% CI 0.25,0.83) within 18-weeks of follow-up.


Sub-optimal discharge practices may be compromising continuity and safety of chronic NCD patient care. Structured protocols, documents and training are required to improve discharge communication, healthcare integration and NCD management.

<![CDATA[Serum levels of bone sialoprotein correlate with portal pressure in patients with liver cirrhosis]]>

Liver cirrhosis represents the common end-stage of chronic liver diseases regardless of its etiology. Patients with compensated disease are mostly asymptomatic, however, progression to a decompensated disease stage is common. The available stratification strategies are often unsuitable to identify patients with a higher risk for disease progression and a limited prognosis. SIBLINGs, soluble glycophosphoproteins, are secreted into the blood by immune-cells. While osteopontin, the most prominent member of the SIBLINGs family, has been repeatedly associated with liver cirrhosis, data on the diagnostic and/or prognostic value of bone sialoprotein (BSP) are scarce and partly inconclusive. In this study, we analyzed the diagnostic and prognostic potential of circulating BSP in comparison to other standard laboratory markers in a large cohort of patients with liver cirrhosis receiving transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt (TIPS). Serum levels of BSP were similar in patients with different disease stages and were not indicative for prognosis. Interestingly, BSP serum levels did correlate inversely with portal pressure, as well as its surrogates such as platelet count, the portal vein cross-sectional area and correlated positively with the portal venous velocity. In summary, our data highlight that BSP might represent a previously unrecognized marker for portal hypertension in patients with liver cirrhosis.

<![CDATA[Association between boarding in the emergency department and in-hospital mortality: A systematic review]]>


Boarding in the emergency department (ED) is a critical indicator of quality of care for hospitals. It is defined as the time between the admission decision and departure from the ED. As a result of boarding, patients stay in the ED until inpatient beds are available; moreover, boarding is associated with various adverse events.

Study objective

The objective of our systematic review was to determine whether ED boarding (EDB) time is associated with in-hospital mortality (IHM).


A systematic search was conducted in academic databases to identify relevant studies. Medline, PubMed, Scopus, Embase, Cochrane, Web of Science, Cochrane, CINAHL and PsychInfo were searched. We included all peer-reviewed published studies from all previous years until November 2018. Studies performed in the ED and focused on the association between EDB and IHM as the primary objective were included. Extracted data included study characteristics, prognostic factors, outcomes, and IHM. A search update in PubMed was performed in May 2019 to ensure the inclusion of recent studies before publishing.


From the initial 4,321 references found through the systematic search, the manual screening of reference lists and the updated search in PubMed, a total of 12 studies were identified as eligible for a descriptive analysis. Overall, six studies found an association between EDB and IHM, while five studies showed no association. The last remaining study included both ICU and non-ICU subgroups and showed conflicting results, with a positive association for non-ICU patients but no association for ICU patients. Overall, a tendency toward an association between EDB and IHM using the pool random effect was observed.


Our systematic review did not find a strong evidence for the association between ED boarding and IHM but there is a tendency toward this association. Further well-controlled, international multicenter studies are needed to demonstrate whether this association exists and whether there is a specific EDB time cut-off that results in increased IHM.

<![CDATA[Regional variations in geographic access to inpatient hospices and Place of death: A Population-based study in England, UK]]>


There is much variation in hospice use with respect to geographic factors such as area-based deprivation, location of patient’s residence and proximity to services location. However, little is known about how the association between geographic access to inpatient hospice and hospice deaths varies by patients’ region of settlement.

Study aim

To examine regional differences in the association between geographic access to inpatient hospice and hospice deaths.


A regional population-based observational study in England, UK. Records of patients aged ≥ 25 years (n = 123088) who died from non-accidental causes in 2014, were extracted from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) death registry. Our cohort comprised of patients who died at home and in inpatient hospice. Decedents were allocated to each of the nine government office regions of England (London, East Midlands, West Midlands, East, Yorkshire and The Humber, South West, South East, North West and North East) through record linkage with their postcode of usual residence. We defined geographic access as a measure of drive times from patients’ residential location to the nearest inpatient hospice. A modified Poisson regression estimated the association between geographic access to hospice, comparing hospice deaths (1) versus home deaths (0). We developed nine regional specific models and adjusted for regional differences in patient’s clinical & socio-demographic characteristics. The strength of the association was estimated with adjusted Proportional Ratios (aPRs).


The percentage of deaths varied across regions (home: 86.7% in the North East to 73.0% in the South East; hospice: 13.3% in the North East to 27.0% in the South East). We found wide differences in geographic access to inpatient hospices across regions. Median drive times to hospice varied from 4.6 minutes in London to 25.9 minutes in the North East. We found a dose-response association in the East: (aPRs: 0.22–0.78); East Midlands: (aPRs: 0.33–0.63); North East (aPRs: 0.19–0.87); North West (aPRs: 0.69–0.88); South West (aPRs: 0.56–0.89) and West Midlands (aPRs: 0.28–0.92) indicating that decedents who lived further away from hospices locations (≥ 10 minutes) were less likely to die in a hospice.


The clear dose-response associations in six regions underscore the importance of regional specific initiatives to improve and optimise access to hospices. Commissioners and policymakers need to do more to ensure that home death is not due to limited geographic access to inpatient hospice care.

<![CDATA[Illness Severity in Hospitalized Influenza Patients by Virus Type and Subtype, Spain, 2010–2017]]>

Influenza A(H1N1)pdm09 caused more hospitalizations, intensive care unit admissions, and deaths than influenza A(H3N2) or B.

<![CDATA[Characteristics of Patients with Acute Flaccid Myelitis, United States, 2015–2018]]>

Differences between years with and without increased activity suggest differences in viral etiologies.

<![CDATA[Neutralizing Antibodies against Enteroviruses in Patients with Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease ]]>

Hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD) is an emerging infection with pandemic potential. Knowledge of neutralizing antibody responses among its pathogens is essential to inform vaccine development and epidemiologic research. We used 120 paired-plasma samples collected at enrollment and >7 days after the onset of illness from HFMD patients infected with enterovirus A71 (EV-A71), coxsackievirus A (CVA) 6, CVA10, and CVA16 to study cross neutralization. For homotypic viruses, seropositivity increased from <60% at enrollment to 97%–100% at follow-up, corresponding to seroconversion rates of 57%–93%. Seroconversion for heterotypic viruses was recorded in only 3%–23% of patients. All plasma samples from patients infected with EV-A71 subgenogroup B5 could neutralize the emerging EV-A71 subgenogroup C4. Collectively, our results support previous reports about the potential benefit of EV-A71 vaccine but highlight the necessity of multivalent vaccines to control HFMD.

<![CDATA[Readiness to prescribe: Using educational design to untie the Gordian Knot]]>


Junior residents routinely prescribe medications for hospitalised patients with only arms-length supervision, which compromises patient safety. A cardinal example is insulin prescribing, which is commonplace, routinely delegated to very junior doctors, difficult, potentially very dangerous, and getting no better. Our aim was to operationalise the concept of ‘readiness to prescribe’ by validating an instrument to quality-improve residents’ workplace prescribing education.


Guided by theories of behaviour change, implementation, and error, and by empirical evidence, we developed and refined a mixed-methods 24-item evaluation instrument, and analysed numerical responses from Foundation Trainees (junior residents) in Northern Ireland, UK using principal axis factoring, and conducted a framework analysis of participants’ free-text responses.


255 trainees participated, 54% women and 46% men, 80% of whom were in the second foundation year. The analysis converged on a 4-factor solution explaining 57% of the variance. Participants rated their capability to prescribe higher (79%) than their capability to learn to prescribe (69%; p<0.001) and rated the support to their prescribing education lower still (43%; p<0.001). The findings were similar in men and women, first and second year trainees, and in different hospitals. Free text responses described an unreflective type of learning from experience in which participants tended to 'get by' when faced with complex problems.


Operationalising readiness to prescribe as a duality, comprising residents’ capability and the fitness of their educational environments, demonstrated room for improvement in both. We offer the instrument to help clinical educators improve the two in tandem.

<![CDATA[Diabetes Mellitus, Hypertension, and Death among 32 Patients with MERS-CoV Infection, Saudi Arabia]]>

Diabetes mellitus and hypertension are recognized risk factors for severe clinical outcomes, including death, associated with Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus infection. Among 32 virus-infected patients in Saudi Arabia, severity of illness and frequency of death corresponded closely with presence of multiple and more severe underlying conditions.

<![CDATA[Evaluation the oral hygiene conditions, oral Candida colonization and salivary Streptococcus mutans and Lactobacilli density in a group of β-thalassemic children and adolescence]]>


In this study, the prevalence and distribution of dental caries and oral hygiene conditions in a group of patients with β-TM are evaluated and the results compared to age-and gender-matched healthy patients. In addition, oral candida colonization and the density of Streptococcus mutans (S.mutans) and Lactobacilli in the total saliva are assessed.

Material and Methods

This study involved 59 β-TM patients between 6-16 years old (mean:11.59±3.22), who applied to the Department of Pedodontics, Faculty of Dentistry, Akdeniz University, with ongoing follow-up, treatment and regular blood transfusions. All enrolled patients were diagnosed with β-TM by the Department of Pediatric Hematology and Oncology, Faculty of Medicine, Akdeniz University. As a control group, age-and gender-matched healthy 50 patients were included to the study.


Plaque (p=0.001), DMFT (p=0.009) and DMFS (p=0.039) indices were significantly higher in the β-TM patients, whereas, the oral hygiene status was significantly lower (p=0.004). Saliva buffering capacity average was insignificantly but slightly more in β-TM patients(p=0.131). While S.mutans values were significantly higher in the β-TM patients (p=0.002), no significant difference was found in the Lactobacillus (p=0.131) and Candida values (p=0.33).


DMFT, DMFS, Plaque and oral hygiene indices and S.mutans values were found significantly different in β-TM patients than healthy, control group patients, in this study.

Key words:Thalassemia major, DMFT, S.mutans, Lactobacilli, Candida.

<![CDATA[Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus Infection Dynamics and Antibody Responses among Clinically Diverse Patients, Saudi Arabia]]>

Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) shedding and antibody responses are not fully understood, particularly in relation to underlying medical conditions, clinical manifestations, and mortality. We enrolled MERS-CoV–positive patients at a hospital in Saudi Arabia and periodically collected specimens from multiple sites for real-time reverse transcription PCR and serologic testing. We conducted interviews and chart abstractions to collect clinical, epidemiologic, and laboratory information. We found that diabetes mellitus among survivors was associated with prolonged MERS-CoV RNA detection in the respiratory tract. Among case-patients who died, development of robust neutralizing serum antibody responses during the second and third week of illness was not sufficient for patient recovery or virus clearance. Fever and cough among mildly ill patients typically aligned with RNA detection in the upper respiratory tract; RNA levels peaked during the first week of illness. These findings should be considered in the development of infection control policies, vaccines, and antibody therapeutics.

<![CDATA[β-blockers after acute myocardial infarction in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease: A nationwide population-based observational study]]>


Patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) less often receive β-blockers after acute myocardial infarction (AMI). This may influence their outcomes after AMI. This study evaluated the efficacy of β-blockers after AMI in patients with COPD, compared with non-dihydropyridine calcium channel blockers (NDCCBs) and absence of these two kinds of treatment.

Methods and results

We conducted a nationwide population-based cohort study using data retrieved from Taiwan National Health Insurance Research Database. We collected 28,097 patients with COPD who were hospitalized for AMI between January 2004 and December 2013. After hospital discharge, 24,056 patients returned to outpatient clinics within 14 days (the exposure window). Those who received both β-blockers and NDCCBs (n = 302) were excluded, leaving 23,754 patients for analysis. Patients were classified into the β-blocker group (n = 10,638, 44.8%), the NDCCB group, (n = 1,747, 7.4%) and the control group (n = 11,369, 47.9%) based on their outpatient prescription within the exposure window. The β-blockers group of patients had lower overall mortality risks (adjusted hazard ratio [95% confidence interval]: 0.91 [0.83–0.99] versus the NDCCB group; 0.88 [0.84–0.93] versus the control group), but the risk of major adverse cardiac events within 1 year was not statistically different. β-blockers decreased risks of re-hospitalization for COPD and other respiratory diseases by 12–32%.


The use of β-blockers after AMI was associated with a reduced mortality risk in patients with COPD. β-blockers did not increase the risk of COPD exacerbations.