Consensus is the holy grail of bioethics, the lynch pin of the assumption that well informed, well intentioned people may reach generally acceptable positions on ethically contentious issues. It has been especially important in bioethics, where advancing technology has assured an increasing field of complex medical dilemmas. This paper results on the use of a multicriterion decision making system (MCDM) analyzing group process in an attempt to better define hospital policy. In a pilot program at The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, a series of small scale focus groups was constituted to examine criteria defining organ transplant eligibility. Criteria were organized hierarchically using the Analytic Hierarchy Process, an MCDM approach, and the resulting data was analyzed using Expert Choice 9.0, software designed to facilitate AHP analysis. Qualitative and quantitative analysis map barriers to practical consensus in a way not previously possible.
The aim of the study was to evaluate whether the "Quantitative Blush Evaluator" (QuBE) score is associated with measures of myocardial reperfusion in patients with ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) treated in two hospitals with 24/7 coronary intervention facilities.
QuBE is an open source computer program to quantify myocardial perfusion. Although QuBE has shown to be practical and feasible in the patients enrolled in the Thrombus Aspiration during Percutaneous Coronary Intervention in Acute Myocardial Infarction Study (TAPAS), QuBE has not yet been verified on reperfusion outcomes of primary percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) patients treated in other catheterization laboratories.
Core lab adjudicated angiographic outcomes and QuBE values were assessed on angiograms of patients who were enrolled in the PRoximal Embolic Protection in Acute myocardial infarction and Resolution of ST-Elevation (PREPARE) trial. ST-segment resolution immediately after PCI measured by continuous ST Holter monitoring was calculated by a blinded core lab.
The QuBE score could be assessed on 229 of the 284 angiograms (81%) and was significantly associated with visually assessed myocardial blush grade (P
Department of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine, Monash University, Central and Eastern Clinical School, The Alfred Hospital, Commercial Road, Melbourne, VIC 3004, Australia. Charmian.Bennett@med.monash.edu.au
The adverse public health impacts of anthropogenically derived particulate matter have been well documented, with measurable increases in both morbidity and mortality rates associated with high particulate matter pollution events. Most current research has focussed on the health impacts of anthropogenically derived particulate matter, and there is a distinct scarcity of literature that examines the role of naturally derived particulate matter and adverse health impacts in the urban context. This study of a Gobi desert dust event in the Greater Vancouver region of British Columbia, Canada, in spring of 1998 provided a unique opportunity to identify the adverse health effects related to naturally derived particulate matter in a large urban setting. Respiratory and cardiac hospitalizations were examined for a three-year period (January 1997 to December 1999), with the Gobi dust event occurring in late April 1998. A meteorological analogue was identified for spring 1997 in order to identify the public health impacts associated with anthropogenically derived particulate matter and those impacts associated with the presence of the Gobi desert dust. Results indicate that this Gobi dust event was not associated with an excess of hospitalizations in the Greater Vancouver region. Peak particulate matter concentrations of Gobi desert dust in the airshed were only associated with an additional one or two hospitalizations per 100,000 population for respiratory and cardiac illnesses, and these increases were not distinguishable from the 'normal' variability in hospitalization rates. Despite high particulate matter concentrations, fine particle size, presence of heavy metals in the dust and extended exposure periods, it appears that the Gobi desert dust event was not associated with significant risk to public health in Greater Vancouver, British Columbia. Therefore it is concluded that naturally derived particulate matter is more benign than particulate matter of anthropogenic origin, and thus poses a low risk to health for the general public.
One hundred and twenty (120) women, taking contraceptive pills, underwent a structured interview with a view elucidating their knowledge of the physiology of menstruation, the action and side effects of contraceptive pills and their compliance in the taking of contraceptive pills. The most important sources of information were the medical letters in magazines and the women's own doctors, while the teaching in the Folkeskole (primary and lower secondary school) had not had any major influence on the level of information. Well over one third of the interviewed women knew the most important action mechanism of the contraceptive pill, and half of the women could give a satisfactory explanation of the physiology of menstruation. Twenty-four percent (24%) thought that pregnancy could not occur until 1-2 months after the woman had ceased taking the pill. There was high compliance among the women i.e. that their behavior was correct when they had forgotten to take one or two contraceptive pills, when bleeding was irregular, and when beginning on a new package of pills. Eighty-three percent (83%) had experienced side effects that could be related to contraceptive pills. The investigation shows that there is a need for more efficient information about the effects of the Pill and about the physiology of menstruation.
Randomized comparison of primary percutaneous coronary intervention with combined proximal embolic protection and thrombus aspiration versus primary percutaneous coronary intervention alone in ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction: the PREPARE (PRoximal Embolic Protection in Acute myocardial infarction and Resolution of ST-Elevation) study.
The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of combined proximal embolic protection with thrombus aspiration (Proxis Embolic Protection System [St. Jude Medical, St. Paul, Minnesota]) in ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction patients.
Embolization during primary percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) may result in microvascular obstruction, reduced myocardial perfusion, and impaired prognosis.
Two hundred eight-four patients were randomized to primary PCI with the Proxis system versus primary PCI alone after angiography. The primary end point was the occurrence of complete (> or =70%) ST-segment resolution (STR) at 60 min measured by continuous ST-segment Holter.
There was no significant difference in the occurrence of the primary end point (80% vs. 72%, p = 0.14). However, immediate complete STR (at time of last contrast) occurred in 66% of Proxis-treated patients and 50% in control patients (absolute difference, 16.3%; 95% confidence interval: 4.3% to 28.2%; p = 0.009). A significant lower ST-segment curve area (0 to 3 h after primary PCI) was observed in the Proxis arm (5,192 microV/min vs. 6,250 microV/min, p = 0.037). Major adverse cardiac and cerebral events at 30 days occurred with similar frequency in both groups (6 vs. 10).
There was no significant difference in complete STR at 60 min in this proof-of-concept study. However, we observed a significant difference in immediate complete STR in Proxis-treated patients, better STR at later time points, and a reduction of electrocardiogram injury current over time, compared with control patients. The results suggest that primary PCI with the Proxis system may lead to better immediate microvascular flow in ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction patients. (The PREPARE Study; ISRCTN71104460).