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Current Epidemiology Reports

Aubree Gordon, Arthur Reingold
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
2018: Current Epidemiology Reports
Anurag Verma, Marylyn D Ritchie
Purpose of Review: Over many decades, researchers have been designing studies to investigate the relationship between genotypes and phenotypes to gain an understanding about the effect of genetics on disease. Recently, a high-throughput approach called phenome-wide associations studies (PheWAS) have been extensively used to identify associations between genetic variants and many diseases and traits simultaneously. In this review, we describe the value of PheWAS along with methodological issues and challenges in interpretation for current applications of PheWAS...
December 2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
Lori C Sakoda, Louise M Henderson, Tanner J Caverly, Karen J Wernli, Hormuzd A Katki
Purpose of review: Risk prediction models may be useful for facilitating effective and high-quality decision-making at critical steps in the lung cancer screening process. This review provides a current overview of published lung cancer risk prediction models and their applications to lung cancer screening and highlights both challenges and strategies for improving their predictive performance and use in clinical practice. Recent findings: Since the 2011 publication of the National Lung Screening Trial results, numerous prediction models have been proposed to estimate the probability of developing or dying from lung cancer or the probability that a pulmonary nodule is malignant...
December 2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
John W Jackson, Ian Schmid, Elizabeth A Stuart
Purpose of review: Propensity score methods have become commonplace in pharmacoepidemiology over the past decade. Their adoption has confronted formidable obstacles that arise from pharmacoepidemiology's reliance on large healthcare databases of considerable heterogeneity and complexity. These include identifying clinically meaningful samples, defining treatment comparisons, and measuring covariates in ways that respect sound epidemiologic study design. Additional complexities involve correctly modeling treatment decisions in the face of variation in healthcare practice, and dealing with missing information and unmeasured confounding...
December 2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
Andrew F Olshan
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
December 2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
John G Connolly, Shirley V Wang, Candace C Fuller, Sengwee Toh, Catherine A Panozzo, Noelle Cocoros, Meijia Zhou, Joshua J Gagne, Judith C Maro
Purpose of Review: An important component of the Food and Drug Administration's Sentinel Initiative is the active post-market risk identification and analysis (ARIA) system, which utilizes semi-automated, parameterized computer programs to implement propensity-score adjusted and self-controlled risk interval designs to conduct targeted surveillance of medical products in the Sentinel Distributed Database. In this manuscript, we review literature relevant to the development of these programs and describe their application within the Sentinel Initiative...
December 2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
Xiaojuan Li, Jessica G Young, Sengwee Toh
Purpose of review: Pharmacoepidemiologists are often interested in estimating the effects of dynamic treatment strategies, where treatments are modified based on patients' evolving characteristics. For such problems, appropriate control of both baseline and time-varying confounders is critical. Conventional methods that control confounding by including time-varying treatments and confounders in an outcome regression model may not have a causal interpretation, even when all baseline and time-varying confounders are measured...
December 2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
Sengwee Toh
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
December 2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
Jennifer Anne Doherty, Lauren Cole Peres, Chen Wang, Gregory P Way, Casey S Greene, Joellen M Schildkraut
Purpose of review: Only recently has it become clear that epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) is comprised of such distinct histotypes--with different cells of origin, morphology, molecular features, epidemiologic factors, clinical features, and survival patterns-that they can be thought of as different diseases sharing an anatomical location. Herein, we review opportunities and challenges in studying EOC heterogeneity. Recent findings: The 2014 World Health Organization diagnostic guidelines incorporate accumulated evidence that high- and low-grade serous tumors have different underlying pathogenesis, and that, on the basis of shared molecular features, most high grade tumors, including some previously classified as endometrioid, are now considered to be high-grade serous...
September 2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
Carmen Messerlian, Audrey J Gaskins
PURPOSE: While considerable progress has been made since the advent of assisted reproductive technology (ART), the field remains a complex and challenging one for clinicians and researchers alike. This review discusses some of the most salient issues pertaining to the study of ART and whenever possible suggestions on how to address them. RECENT FINDINGS: More than 5 million babies have been born through ART to date, representing up to 4% of all births worldwide...
June 2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
Anissa I Vines, Julia B Ward, Evette Cordoba, Kristin Z Black
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Recent literature on racial or ethnic discrimination and mental health was reviewed to assess the current science and identify key areas of emphasis for social epidemiology. Objectives of this review were to: 1) Determine whether there have been advancements in the measurement and analysis of perceived discrimination; 2) Identify the use of theories and/or frameworks in perceived discrimination and mental health research; and 3) Assess the extent to which stress buffers are being considered and evaluated in the existing literature...
June 2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
Alexander J Millman, Noele P Nelson, Claudia Vellozzi
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: This review highlights key studies and recently published data, policies, and recommendations related to hepatitis C virus (HCV) epidemiology, transmission, and treatment. RECENT FINDINGS: HCV is a leading cause of liver-related deaths, cirrhosis, and hepatocellular carcinoma. Since 2011 and accelerating since 2013, new, safe, tolerable, and curative therapies have considerably altered clinical and public health frameworks related to the prevention, control and clinical management of HCV...
June 2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
Kelly K Ferguson, Helen B Chin
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Preterm birth is a significant worldwide health problem of uncertain origins. The extant body of literature examining environmental contaminant exposures in relation to preterm birth is extensive but results remain ambiguous for most organic pollutants, metals and metalloids, and air pollutants. In the present review we examine recent epidemiologic studies investigating these associations, and identify recent advances and the state of the science. Additionally, we highlight biological mechanisms of action in the pathway between chemical exposures and preterm birth, including inflammation, oxidative stress, and endocrine disruption, that deserve more attention in this context...
March 2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
Joseph M Braun, Carmen Messerlian, Russ Hauser
PURPOSE: Despite accumulating evidence from experimental animal studies showing that paternal environmental exposures induce genetic and epigenetic alterations in sperm which in turn increase the risk of adverse health outcomes in offspring, there is limited epidemiological data on the effects of human paternal preconception exposures on children's health. We summarize animal and human studies showing that paternal preconception environmental exposures influence offspring health. We discuss specific approaches and designs for human studies to investigate the health effects of paternal preconception exposures, the specific challenges these studies may face, and how we might address them...
March 2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
Alexis D Vick, Heather H Burris
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: African Americans disproportionately suffer from leading causes of morbidity and mortality including cardiovascular disease (CVD), cancer, and preterm birth. Disparities can arise from multiple social and environmental exposures, but how the human body responds to these exposures to result in pathophysiologic states is incompletely understood. RECENT FINDINGS: Epigenetic mechanisms, particularly DNA methylation, can be altered in response to exposures such as air pollution, psychosocial stress, and smoking...
March 2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
Susan E Andrade, Anick BĂ©rard, Hedvig M E Nordeng, Mollie E Wood, Marleen M H J van Gelder, Sengwee Toh
Purpose of Review: Administrative claims databases, which collect reimbursement-related information generated from healthcare encounters, are increasingly used to evaluate medication safety in pregnancy. We reviewed the strengths and limitations of claims-only databases and how other data sources may be used to improve the accuracy and completeness of information critical for studying medication safety in pregnancy. Recent Findings: Research on medication safety in pregnancy requires information on pregnancy episodes, mother-infant linkage, medication exposure, gestational age, maternal and birth outcomes, confounding factors, and (in some studies) long-term follow-up data...
2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
Jie Zheng, Denis Baird, Maria-Carolina Borges, Jack Bowden, Gibran Hemani, Philip Haycock, David M Evans, George Davey Smith
Purpose of Review: Mendelian randomization (MR) is a strategy for evaluating causality in observational epidemiological studies. MR exploits the fact that genotypes are not generally susceptible to reverse causation and confounding, due to their fixed nature and Mendel's First and Second Laws of Inheritance. MR has the potential to provide information on causality in many situations where randomized controlled trials are not possible, but the results of MR studies must be interpreted carefully to avoid drawing erroneous conclusions...
2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
Sonja A Swanson
Purpose of review: When leveraging observational data to estimate treatment effects, it is useful to explicitly specify the "target trial" the investigators aspire to emulate. One concern is whether a proposed analysis plan can address the realities of the differences between the available non-randomized observational study and the target trial. When large or unknown sources of unmeasured confounding are suspected, investigators might consider turning to instrumental variable (IV) methods...
2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
Joanna Maselko
PURPOSE OF THE REVIEW: The vast majority of research on the social determinants of mental health has been generated from high-income country (HIC) populations, even as the greatest health disparities, and greatest disease burden, is observed in lower- and middle-income countries (LMICs). The goal of this review is to examine the evidence base on how key social epidemiology constructs relate to mental health in LMIC contexts. A special focus is on points of departure from the HIC knowledge base, gaps in overall understanding, and opportunities for social epidemiology to make a significant contribution...
2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
K S Joseph, Neda Razaz, Giulia M Muraca, Sarka Lisonkova
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Several prestigious agencies routinely rank countries based on crude perinatal and infant mortality rates, while more recently, international neonatal networks have begun comparing neonatal mortality and morbidity rates among very preterm and very low-birth-weight infants. We discuss the methodologic challenges that compromise such comparisons and potential remedies. RECENT FINDINGS: Crude perinatal mortality rates are biased by international variations in birth registration, especially at the borderline of viability...
2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
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