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Wendy Ming, Dimitrios J Palidis, Miriam Spering, Martin J McKeown
Purpose: Visual impairments are frequent in Parkinson's disease (PD) and impact normal functioning in daily activities. Visual contrast sensitivity is a powerful nonmotor sign for discriminating PD patients from controls. However, it is usually assessed with static visual stimuli. Here we examined the interaction between perception and eye movements in static and dynamic contrast sensitivity tasks in a cohort of mildly impaired, early-stage PD patients. Methods: Patients (n = 13) and healthy age-matched controls (n = 12) viewed stimuli of various spatial frequencies (0-8 cyc/deg) and speeds (0°/s, 10°/s, 30°/s) on a computer monitor...
October 1, 2016: Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science
Daniel S Joyce, Beatrix Feigl, Andrew J Zele
Purpose: We determine the effect of short-term light adaptation on the pupil light reflex and the melanopsin mediated post-illumination pupil response (PIPR). Inner and outer retinal photoreceptor contributions to the dark-adapted pupil response were estimated. Methods: In Experiment A, light adaptation was studied using short wavelength lights ranging from subthreshold to suprathreshold irradiances for melanopsin signaling that were presented before (5-60 seconds) and after (30 seconds) a melanopsin-exciting stimulus pulse...
October 1, 2016: Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science
Tatiana Vasconcelos Dos Santos, Martha Cristina Nunes Moreira, Romeu Gomes
This article analyzes the approach to children and adolescent participation in disability studies. Methodologically, it combines a literature review and a theme-based content analysis to look at which dimensions of participation are explored in the literature. As the result of this study we highlight four areas: Sports, Quality of Life/Well-Being, School and Participation Metrics. We find that the focus is on participation as performing activities within a given context, with very few broader discussions about the domain as a human value related to socialization and the development of a support network, the management of independence and levels of dependence...
October 2016: Ciência & Saúde Coletiva
Corey A Lester, Kevin A Look, Michelle A Chui
BACKGROUND: The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) adopted the proportion of days covered (PDC) calculation for use in their Five-Star Quality Rating System for Medicare Advantage and Prescription Drug Plans. This calculation uses the prescription adjudication date (i.e., date the prescription is billed to the benefits manager by a pharmacy) as a proxy for medication adherence. Adherence programs, such as automatic refill programs, have become commonplace in community pharmacy and have been identified by industry leaders as interfering with the ability to accurately measure adherence using PDC...
November 2016: Journal of Managed Care & Specialty Pharmacy
Alex Peaslee, Marleen Wickizer, Julie Olson, Robert Topp
BACKGROUND: Value-based insurance design (VBID) waives or reduces prescription copayments in order to decrease member cost barriers to refilling medications. Medication therapy management (MTM) is a member clinical intervention designed to reinforce members' knowledge of their medications, which addresses barriers to medication adherence. Both methods have been shown to increase adherence in members, particularly when used in combination. To date, studies of such combined programs have often been completed within integrated health systems but have rarely included control populations...
November 2016: Journal of Managed Care & Specialty Pharmacy
Joanna P MacEwan, Felicia M Forma, Jason Shafrin, Ainslie Hatch, Darius N Lakdawalla, Jean-Pierre Lindenmayer
BACKGROUND: Poor medication adherence contributes to negative treatment response, symptom relapse, and hospitalizations in schizophrenia. Many health plans use claims-based measures like medication possession ratios or proportion of days covered (PDC) to measure patient adherence to antipsychotics. Classifying patients solely on the basis of a single average PDC measure, however, may mask clinically meaningful variations over time in how patients arrive at an average PDC level. OBJECTIVE: To model patterns of medication adherence evolving over time for patients with schizophrenia who initiated treatment with an oral atypical antipsychotic and, based on these patterns, to identify groups of patients with different adherence behaviors...
November 2016: Journal of Managed Care & Specialty Pharmacy
Xin Chen, Zelan Ma, Yanqi Huang, Lan He, Cuishan Liang, Changzheng Shi, Zhongping Zhang, Changhong Liang, Zaiyi Liu
PURPOSE: To investigate the value of multiparametric magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) for monitoring the ultra-early (within 24 hours) treatment effect of sorafenib in human hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) xenografts. MATERIALS AND METHODS: With institutional Animal Care and Use Committee approval, 16 BALB/c nude mice bearing subcutaneous HCC xenografts underwent serial Gaussian and non-Gaussian DWI at baseline and 1, 3, 6, 12, and 24 hours posttreatment using a 1...
October 26, 2016: Journal of Magnetic Resonance Imaging: JMRI
Daniel Summer Gareau, Joel Correa da Rosa, Sarah Yagerman, John A Carucci, Nicholas Gulati, Ferran Hueto, Jennifer L DeFazio, Mayte Suárez-Farinas, Ashfaq Marghoob, James G Krueger
We developed an automated approach for generating quantitative image analysis metrics (imaging biomarkers) that are then analyzed with a set of thirteen machine-learning algorithms to generate an overall risk score that is called a Q-score. These methods were applied to a set of 120 "difficult" dermoscopy images of dysplastic nevi and melanomas that were subsequently excised/classified. This approach yielded 98% sensitivity and 36% specificity for melanoma detection, approaching sensitivity/specificity of expert lesion evaluation...
October 26, 2016: Experimental Dermatology
Qing-Ju Jiao, Yan Huang, Hong-Bin Shen
Biological networks are effective tools for studying molecular interactions. Modular structure, in which genes or proteins may tend to be associated with functional modules or protein complexes, is a remarkable feature of biological networks. Mining modular structure from biological networks enables us to focus on a set of potentially important nodes, which provides a reliable guide to future biological experiments. The first fundamental challenge in mining modular structure from biological networks is that the quality of the observed network data is usually low owing to noise and incompleteness in the obtained networks...
October 26, 2016: Molecular BioSystems
Robert Weech-Maldonado, Janice L Dreachslin, Josué Patien Epané, Judith Gail, Shivani Gupta, Joyce Anne Wainio
BACKGROUND: Cultural competency or the ongoing capacity of health care systems to provide for high-quality care to diverse patient populations (National Quality Forum, 2008) has been proposed as an organizational strategy to address disparities in quality of care, patient experience, and workforce representation. But far too many health care organizations still do not treat cultural competency as a business imperative and driver of strategy. PURPOSES: The aim of the study was to examine the impact of a systematic, multifaceted, and organizational level cultural competency initiative on hospital performance metrics at the organizational and individual levels...
October 25, 2016: Health Care Management Review
A Neubert, Z Yang, C Engstrom, Y Xia, M W Strudwick, S S Chandra, J Fripp, S Crozier
PURPOSE: Magnetic resonance (MR) imaging plays a key role in investigating early degenerative disorders and traumatic injuries of the glenohumeral cartilages. Subtle morphometric and biochemical changes of potential relevance to clinical diagnosis, treatment planning, and evaluation can be assessed from measurements derived from in vivo MR segmentation of the cartilages. However, segmentation of the glenohumeral cartilages, using approaches spanning manual to automated methods, is technically challenging, due to their thin, curved structure and overlapping intensities of surrounding tissues...
October 2016: Medical Physics
Jeremiah Sanders, Lynne Hurwitz, Ehsan Samei
PURPOSE: To develop and validate an automated technique for evaluating the spatial resolution characteristics of clinical computed tomography (CT) images. METHODS: Twenty one chest and abdominopelvic clinical CT datasets were examined in this study. An algorithm was developed to extract a CT resolution index (RI) analogous to the modulation transfer function from clinical CT images by measuring the edge-spread function (ESF) across the patient's skin. A polygon mesh of the air-skin boundary was created...
October 2016: Medical Physics
Michael Dayan, G Olivito, M Molinari, Mara Cercignani, Marco Bozzali, M Leggio
In recent years the cerebellum has been attributed amore important role in higher-level functions than previously believed. We examined a cohort of patients suffering from cerebellar atrophy resulting in ataxia, with two main objectives: first to investigate which regions of the cerebrum were affected by the cerebellar degeneration, and second to assess whether diffusion magnetic resonance imaging (dMRI) metrics within the medial (MCP) and superior cerebellar peduncle (SCP) - namely fractional anisotropy (FA) and radial diffusivity (RD) - could be used as a biomarker in patients with this condition...
October 26, 2016: Functional Neurology
Lin Wang, Guanrong Chen
A hybrid multi-agent systems model integrating the advantages of both metric interaction and topological interaction rules, called the metric-topological model, is developed. This model describes planar motions of mobile agents, where each agent can interact with all the agents within a circle of a constant radius, and can furthermore interact with some distant agents to reach a pre-assigned number of neighbors, if needed. Some sufficient conditions imposed only on system parameters and agent initial states are presented, which ensure achieving synchronization of the whole group of agents...
September 2016: Chaos
J A Tix, C T Hasler, C Sullivan, J D Jeffrey, C D Suski
The current study investigated the behavioural response of Lepomis macrochirus following exposures to elevated carbon dioxide (CO2 ). For this, L. macrochirus were held at ambient pCO2 (160 μatm pCO2 ) for 7 days, then exposed to elevated pCO2 (8300 μatm pCO2 ) for 5 days, and then returned to ambient conditions for a further 5 days to recover. At the end of each exposure period, several behavioural metrics were quantified (boldness, lateralization and activity). Data showed no change in lateralization and most metrics associated with performance and boldness...
October 25, 2016: Journal of Fish Biology
Thomas Peach, Katerina Spranger, Yiannis Ventikos
Bifurcation aneurysms account for a large fraction of cerebral aneurysms and often present morphologies that render traditional endovascular treatments, such as coiling, challenging and problematic. Flow-diverter stents offer a potentially elegant treatment option for such aneurysms, but clinical use of these devices remains controversial. Specifically, the deployment of a flow-diverter device in a bifurcation entails jailing one or more potentially vital vessels with a low-porosity mesh designed to restrict the flow...
October 25, 2016: Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers. Part H, Journal of Engineering in Medicine
T Doshi, C Wilson, C Paterson, C Lamb, A James, K MacKenzie, J Soraghan, L Petropoulakis, G Di Caterina, D Grose
AIMS: To carry out statistical validation of a newly developed magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) auto-contouring software tool for gross tumour volume (GTV) delineation in head and neck tumours to assist in radiotherapy planning. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Axial MRI baseline scans were obtained for 10 oropharyngeal and laryngeal cancer patients. GTV was present on 102 axial slices and auto-contoured using the modified fuzzy c-means clustering integrated with the level set method (FCLSM)...
October 22, 2016: Clinical Oncology: a Journal of the Royal College of Radiologists
Jonathan M Behar, Simon Claridge, Tom Jackson, Ben Sieniewicz, Bradley Porter, Jessica Webb, Ronak Rajani, Stamatis Kapetanakis, Gerald Carr-White, Christopher A Rinaldi
Cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT) is an effective pacemaker delivered treatment for selected patients with heart failure with the target of restoring electro-mechanical synchrony. Imaging techniques using echocardiography have as yet failed to find a metric of dyssynchrony to predict CRT response. Current guidelines are thus unchanged in recommending prolonged QRS duration, severe systolic function and refractory heart failure symptoms as criteria for CRT implantation. Evolving strain imaging techniques in 3D echocardiography, cardiac MRI and CT may however, overcome limitations of older methods and yield more powerful CRT response predictors...
October 26, 2016: Expert Review of Cardiovascular Therapy
Paula Ribeiro Prist, Maria Uriarte, Leandro Reverberi Tambosi, Amanda Prado, Renata Pardini, Paulo Sérgio D Andrea, Jean Paul Metzger
Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome (HPS) is a disease caused by Hantavirus, which are negative-sense RNA viruses in the family Bunyaviridae that are highly virulent to humans. Numerous factors modify risk of Hantavirus transmission and consequent HPS risk. Human-driven landscape change can foster transmission risk by increasing numbers of habitat generalist rodent species that serve as the principal reservoir host. Climate can also affect rodent population dynamics and Hantavirus survival, and a number of social factors can influence probability of HPS transmission to humans...
2016: PloS One
Kathryn H Hrinkevich, Robert A Progar, David C Shaw
The balsam woolly adelgid (Adelges piceae (Ratzeburg) (Homoptera: Adelgidae)) (BWA) is a nonnative, invasive insect that threatens Abies species throughout North America. It is well established in the Pacific Northwest, but continues to move eastward through Idaho and into Montana and potentially threatens subalpine fir to the south in the central and southern Rocky Mountains. We developed a climatic risk model and map that predicts BWA impacts to subalpine fir using a two-step process. Using 30-year monthly climate normals from sites with quantitatively derived BWA damage severity index values, we built a regression model that significantly explained insect damage...
2016: PloS One
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