The effect of the total amount of work hours and the benefits of a shortening is frequently debated, but very little data is available. The present study compared a group (N = 41) that obtained a 9 h reduction of the working week (to a 6 h day) with a comparison group (N = 22) that retained normal work hours. Both groups were constituted of mainly female health care and day care nursery personnel. The experimental group retained full pay and extra personnel were employed to compensate for loss of hours. Questionnaire data were obtained before and 1 year after the change. The data were analyzed using a two-factor ANOVA with the interaction term year*group as the main focus. The results showed a significant interaction of year*group for social factors, sleep quality, mental fatigue, and heart/respiratory complaints, and attitude to work hours. In all cases the experimental group improved whereas the control group did not change. It was concluded that shortened work hours have clear social effects and moderate effects on well-being.
Streptococcus pneumoniae infections belong to the leading worldwide causes of illness and death among young children, people with underlying debilitating medical conditions, and the elderly. Following early documentation of infections due to pneumococcal strains with reduced penicillin susceptibility in Australia in 1967, and of infections due to penicillin-resistant strains in South Africa in 1978, pneumococcal resistance to penicillin and other antibiotics has progressed rapidly and is now a global problem. In Sweden, notification of the occurrence of pneumococci with a minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) > or = 0.5 mg/L for penicillin G (PcG) has been mandatory for general practitioners (GPs) and clinical microbiological laboratories since 1 January 1996. In 1996, 1,057 cases of infection by such pneumococci were reported by microbiological laboratories, but only 262 cases by GPs. With a view to minimising the impact of pneumococci with reduced penicillin susceptibility in Sweden, the National Board of Health and Welfare set up a working group of experts in November 1994. To reduce the transmission of such bacteria in the community, the working group introduced a control programme which includes the isolation of day-care children under six years of age carrying pneumococci with PcG-MICs > or = 0.5 mg/L. An enquiry among the 25 regional centres for infectious disease control in the country to ascertain compliance in the different counties of Sweden showed the programme to have been adhered to in a majority of counties, although many had chosen alternative measures to deal with the problem.
The total number of persons infected or colonised with vancomycin-resistant enterococci mandatorily reported to the Swedish Institute for Infectious Disease Control increased dramatically during 2007 and 2008. During a period of twenty months from 1 July 2007 to 28 February 2009, a total of 760 cases were reported compared with 194 cases reported during the entire period from 2000 to 2006. This rise was mainly attributed to a wide dissemination of vancomycin resistant enterococci which started in a number of hospitals in Stockholm in the autumn of 2007 and was followed by dissemination in various healthcare facilities (hospitals and homes for the elderly) in a further two Swedish counties in 2008. The majority of the cases (97%) were acquired in Sweden and among these, healthcare-acquired E. faecium vanB dominated (n=634). The majority of these isolates had identical or closely related pulsed-field gel electrophoresis patterns indicating clonal dissemination in the affected counties. The median minimum inhibitory concentration of vancomycin was 32 mg/L (ranging from 4 to >128 mg/L) and of teichoplanin 0.12 mg/L (ranging from 0.06 to 0.25 mg/L). Particular emphasis was placed on countermeasures such as screening, contact tracing, cleaning procedures, education in accurate use of infection control practices as well as increasing awareness of hygiene among patients and visitors. With these measures the dissemination rate decreased substantially, but new infections with the E. faecium vanB strain were still detected.
The purpose of this work was to study usage of antibiotics, its possible determinants, and patterns of bacterial resistance in Swedish intensive care units (ICUs).
Prospectively collected data on species and antibiotic resistance of clinical isolates and antibiotic consumption specific to each ICU in 1999 were analyzed together with answers to a questionnaire. Antibiotic usage was measured as defined daily doses per 1000 occupied bed days (DDD1000).
Data were obtained for 38 ICUs providing services to a population of approximately 6 million. The median antibiotic consumption was 1257 DDD1000 (range 584-2415) and correlated with the length of stay but not with the illness severity score or the ICU category. Antibiotic consumption was higher in the ICUs lacking bedside devices for hand disinfection (2193 vs. 1214 DDD1000, p=0.05). In the ICUs with a specialist in infectious diseases responsible for antibiotic treatment the consumption pattern was different only for use of glycopeptides (58% lower usage than in other ICUs: 26 vs. 11 DDD1000,P=0.02). Only 21% of the ICUs had a written guideline on the use of antibiotics, 57% received information on antibiotic usage at least every 3 months and 22% received aggregated resistance data annually. Clinically significant antimicrobial resistance was found among Enterbacter spp. to cephalosporins and among Enterococcus spp. to ampicillin.
Availability of hand disinfection equipment at each bed and a specialist in infectious diseases responsible for antibiotic treatment were factors that correlated with lower antibiotic consumption in Swedish ICUs, whereas patient-related factors were not associated with antibiotic usage.
Blood and CSF isolates (n = 629) from Swedish infants up to one year of age were tested in vitro against 13 antimicrobial agents in order to update the guidelines for empiric therapy of septicaemia and meningitis. Ampicillin plus gentamicin provided inadequate empiric therapy for meningitis, due to the poor CSF penetration of the aminoglycoside and the frequent occurrence of bacterial resistance to ampicillin. Ceftazidime and cefuroxime were moderately active, particularly against isolates from small infants. Cefotaxime today seemed to provide the best empiric therapy of septicaemia and meningitis in infants. Because of the occurrence of Listeria and enterococcal infections, ampicillin should initially be added and other combinations are also advisable for the occasional cases of Enterobacter, Citrobacter, Serratia, and Pseudomonas infections. For coagulase-negative staphylococci only vancomycin offered a broad activity (100% at achievable serum levels).
The antibiotic susceptibility of Haemophilus influenzae, Moraxella catarrhalis, Streptococcus pyogenes and Streptococcus pneumoniae was investigated in five different geographical areas of Sweden in 1990 and compared with results from similar investigations performed in 1983 and 1986. Tests on 100 isolates per species and laboratory were performed by the disk diffusion method, and 10% of the strains plus all resistant ones were sent to the central laboratory for determination of MICs of ampicillin, phenoxymethylpenicillin, cefaclor, loracarbef, erythromycin, tetracycline and trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole. Beta-lactamase production was found in 7% of H. influenzae and 71% of M. catarrhalis, and reduced susceptibility to penicillin in 3% of S. pneumoniae. Low frequencies (1-3%) of tetracycline resistance were found in H. influenzae and in the 2 streptococcal species, in which also less than 1% of the strains were resistant to erythromycin. Resistance to trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole occurred in 7% (range 3-14%) of H. influenzae and in 3% of S. pneumoniae. Cefaclor was active against all streptococci except against S. pneumoniae with reduced susceptibility to penicillin. It was active against beta-lactamase negative strains of M. catarrhalis but had, according to the SIR-system, intermediate activity against H. influenzae. Loracarbef was twice as active as cefaclor against H. influenzae but equally active against the 3 other species tested.
PURPOSE: The aim of this study was to investigate the outcome of aortic valve replacement (AVR) and the effect on quality of life in patients aged over 85 who had symptomatic aortic stenosis. METHODS: We performed a retrospective analysis of 21 patients, aged 85-91 years (mean age 86.5), who underwent AVR, 10 of whom underwent concomitant coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) between 1989 and 1995. All patients were categorized as New York Heart Association (NYHA) functional class III and IV. A questionnaire was used to evaluate heart symptoms and quality of life among the 13 patients who were alive at follow-up (9-83 months). RESULTS: Eighteen patients were categorized as NYHA functional class I and II for 1 year (9 months for one patient) after AVR. Three patients, all undergoing concomitant CABG, died early. The overall 1-, 2- and 3-year actuarial survival rate was 85%, 64% and 53% (among the patients undergoing only AVR the figures were 100%, 100% and 85%). Follow-up questionnaire results showed an improvement in the patients' symptoms of heart disease, dyspnea (P = 0.017) and angina (P = 0.03). An improvement in the patients' physical functioning (P = 0.025), satisfaction with physical ability (P = 0.005), sleep (P = 0.025), health status (P = 0.025) and perception of general health (P = 0.005) was also observed. CONCLUSIONS: Our results show that AVR can be performed on patients > or = 85 years of age or older, with an improvement in heart symptoms and quality of life.
To explore the association between disability and sick leave due to lumbopelvic pain in pregnant women in 3 cohorts in Sweden and Norway and to explore possible factors of importance to sick leave. A further aim was to compare the prevalence of sick leave due to lumbopelvic pain.
Pregnant women (n = 898) from two cohorts in Sweden and one in Norway answered to questionnaires in gestational weeks 10–24; two of the cohorts additionally in weeks 28–38.
Logistic regression models were performed with sick leave due to lumbopelvic pain as dependent factor. Disability, pain, age, parity, cohort, civilian status, and occupational classification were independents factors.
In gestational weeks 10–24 the regression model included 895 cases; 38 on sick leave due to lumbopelvic pain. Disability, pain and cohort affiliation were associated with sick leave. In weeks 28–38, disability, pain and occupation classification were the significant factors. The prevalence of lumbopelvic pain was higher in Norway than in Sweden (65%, vs 58% and 44%; p