The acceptable noise level (ANL) test is used for quantification of the amount of background noise subjects accept when listening to speech. This study investigates Danish hearing-aid users' ANL performance using Danish and non-semantic speech signals, the repeatability of ANL, and the association between ANL and outcome of the international outcome inventory for hearing aids (IOI-HA).
ANL was measured in three conditions in both ears at two test sessions. Subjects completed the IOI-HA and the ANL questionnaire.
Sixty-three Danish hearing-aid users; fifty-seven subjects were full time users and 6 were part time/non users of hearing aids according to the ANL questionnaire.
ANLs were similar to results with American English speech material. The coefficient of repeatability (CR) was 6.5-8.8 dB. IOI-HA scores were not associated to ANL.
Danish and non-semantic ANL versions yield results similar to the American English version. The magnitude of the CR indicates that ANL with Danish and non-semantic speech materials is not suitable for prediction of individual patterns of future hearing-aid use or evaluation of individual benefit from hearing-aid features. The ANL with Danish and non-semantic speech materials is not related to IOI-HA outcome.
The acceptable noise level (ANL) is used to quantify the amount of background noise that subjects can accept while listening to speech, and is suggested for prediction of individual hearing-aid use. The aim of this study was to assess the repeatability of the ANL measured in normal-hearing subjects using running Danish and non-semantic speech materials as stimuli and modulated speech-spectrum and multi-talker babble noises as competing stimuli.
ANL was measured in both ears at two test sessions separated by a period ranging from 12 to 77 days. At each session the measurements at the first and the second ear were separated in time by 15-30 minutes. Bland-Altman plots and calculation of the coefficient of repeatability (CR) were used to estimate the repeatability.
Thirty nine normal-hearing subjects.
The ANL CR was 6.0-8.9 dB for repeated tests separated by about 15-30 minutes and 7.2-10.2 dB for repeated tests separated by 12 days or more.
The ANL test has poor repeatability when assessed with Danish and non-semantic speech materials on normal-hearing subjects. The same CR among hearing-impaired subjects would imply too poor repeatability to predict individual patterns of future hearing-aid use.
Health anxiety (or hypochondriasis) is prevalent, may be persistent and disabling for the sufferers and associated with high societal costs. Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) is a new third-wave behavioral cognitive therapy that has not yet been tested in health anxiety. 34 consecutive Danish patients with severe health anxiety were referred from general practitioners or hospital departments and received a ten-session ACT group therapy. Patients were followed up by questionnaires for 6 months. There were significant reductions in health anxiety, somatic symptoms and emotional distress at 6 months compared to baseline: a 49% reduction in health anxiety (Whiteley-7 Index), a 47% decrease in emotional distress (SCL-8), and a 40% decrease in somatic symptoms (SCL-90R Somatization Subscale). The patients' emotional representations and perception of the consequences of their illness (IPQ) improved significantly, and 87% of the patients were very or extremely satisfied with the treatment.
This study aimed to (1) explore whether quality of life (QOL) is more associated with satisfaction with social participation (SP) than with level of accomplishment in SP and (2) examine respective correlates of accomplishment level and satisfaction with SP.
A cross-sectional design was used with a convenience sample of 155 older adults (mean age=73.7; 60% women) having various levels of activity limitations. Accomplishment level and satisfaction with SP (dependent variables) were estimated with the social roles items of the assessment of life habits. Potential correlates were human functioning components.
Correlations between QOL and accomplishment level and satisfaction with SP did not differ (P=0.71). However, best correlates of accomplishment level and satisfaction with SP were different. Higher accomplishment level of SP was best explained by younger age, activity level perceived as stable, no recent stressing event, better well-being, higher activity level, and fewer obstacles in "Physical environment and accessibility" (R2=0.79). Greater satisfaction with SP was best explained by activity level perceived as stable, better self-perceived health, better well-being, higher activity level, and more facilitators in "Social support and attitudes" (R2=0.51).
With some exceptions, these best correlates may be positively modified and thus warrant special attention in rehabilitation interventions.
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The aims of the study were to describe the stability of active commuting (AC) behavior (i.e., walking and cycling) over 27years and examine the relationship between AC and physical activity (PA) from youth to early midlife.
The mode and distance of travel were assessed using a self-reported questionnaire at five consecutive measurements between 1980 and 2007, when 2072 individuals were followed up from youth (9-18years) to adulthood (30-45years). PA was also measured using a questionnaire.
The prevalence of AC declined sharply with age, particularly after 12years, while AC distances to work or place of study increased substantially. AC was concurrently and prospectively associated with PA in both men and women. Maintained AC, whether walking or cycling and short or long distances, positively predicted adult PA over time. Compared with persistently passive commuters, persistently active commuters had higher adult PA after adjustment for potential covariates. Increasing AC was independently associated with high adult PA, particularly in young adulthood.
Walking and cycling to school/work should be encouraged, as regular AC is associated with higher levels of PA over 27years of follow-up, and thus, may contribute to a healthy and active lifestyle through the various stages of life-course.
The aim of this study was to describe the activity profile of top-class female soccer referees during competition and to relate it to the position of the ball. Ten matches from the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) under-20 female World Championships held in Russia in 2006 were filmed and the kinematical parameters of the female referees (n=10) and the ball were determined using a two-dimensional photogrammetric video system based on direct linear transformation (DLT) algorithms. Total distance covered during a match was 10 km, of which 1.3 km represented high-intensity activities (>13 km/h). The referees' highest mobility was achieved in the initial 15 min of the match, covering greater distance and performing more intense exercise (P
Cigarettes and Swedish snuff contain nicotine, which influence the cardiovascular system. Cigarette smoke has been shown to give an acute impairment in diastolic heart parameters. The systolic and diastolic heart function in snuff users is not thoroughly enough investigated. The aim of this study was to investigate if Swedish snuff will give an acute decrease in systolic and diastolic heart parameters in the left and right ventricles in healthy Swedish snuffers.
Thirty healthy volunteers were examined with echocardiography. The study involved recordings from four different times: before snuff intake, 5 and 30 min after intake and finally 30 min after snuff withdrawal. The systolic and diastolic heart parameters were collected with conventional echocardiographic methods. In addition, the heart frequency and blood pressure response were measured. The pulse and blood pressure response were significantly altered (P
Diabetic retinopathy is accompanied by disturbances in retinal blood flow, which is assumed to be related to the diabetic metabolic dysregulation. It has previously been shown that normoinsulinemic hyperglycemia has no effect on the diameter of retinal arterioles at rest and during an increase in the arterial blood pressure induced by isometric exercise. However, the influence of hyperinsulinemia on this response has not been studied in detail. In seven normal persons, the diameter response of retinal arterioles to an increased blood pressure induced by isometric exercise, to stimulation with flickering light, and to the combination of these stimuli was studied during euglycemic normoinsulinemia (protocol N) on one examination day, and euglycemic hyperinsulinemia (protocol H) on another examination day. Isometric exercise induced significant contraction of retinal arterioles at all examinations, but during a repeated examination the diameter response was significantly reduced in the test persons following the N protocol and increased in the persons following the H protocol. Flicker stimulation induced a significant dilatation of retinal arterioles at all examinations, and the response was significantly higher during a repeated examination, irrespective of the insulin level. Repeated exposure to isometric exercise reduces contraction, whereas repeated exposure to flickering light increases dilatation of retinal arterioles in vivo. Hyperinsulinemia increases contraction of retinal arterioles induced by isometric exercise.
Although making explicit links between procedures and concepts during instruction in mathematics is important, it is still unclear the precise moments during instruction when such links are best made.
The objective was to test the effectiveness of a 3-week classroom intervention on the fractions knowledge of grade 5/6 students. The instruction was based on a theory that specifies three sites during the learning process where concepts and symbols can be connected (Hiebert, 1984): symbol interpretation, procedural execution, and solution evaluation. Sample. Seventy students from one grade 5/6 split and two grade 6 classrooms in two public elementary schools participated.
The students were randomly assigned to treatment and control. The treatment (Sites group) received instruction that incorporated specific connections between fractions concepts and procedures at each of the three sites specified by the Sites theory. Before and after the intervention, the students' knowledge of concepts and procedures was assessed, and a random subsample of 30 students from both conditions were individually interviewed to measure their ability to make specific connections between concepts and symbols at each of the three sites.
a-Defensins are part of the innate immune system. Low-grade inflammation seems to play a crucial role in development and progression of chronic heart failure (CHF). The aims of the present study were to compare plasma levels of a-defensins in CHF patients and healthy controls and to examine the predictive ability of a-defensins, alone and combined with N-terminal pro brain natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP), with respect to all-cause mortality.
In a prospective observational study lasting 2.6 years we examined the prognostic value of plasma a-defensins with respect to mortality in 194 CHF patients, and compared plasma levels with those of 98 age-matched healthy controls. a-Defensin levels were twice as high among CHF patients in New York Heart Association (NYHA) functional class III-IV than in patients in NYHA class I-II and healthy controls (P = 0.001). The absolute increase in risk of mortality for patients with a-defensin levels in the upper tertile vs. the lowest tertile was 30% (P = 0.002). After adjusting for potential confounders including NT-proBNP, plasma a-defensins remained independently associated with an increased risk of all-cause mortality (hazard ratio 1.65, 95% confidence interval 1.19-2.28, P = 0.002) per 1 standard deviation increment in Ln (natural logarithm)-transformed a-defensin values. The combination of high a-defensins and NT-proBNP levels provided incremental prognostic information independent of well-known prognostic biomarkers in heart failure.
Plasma a-defensins appear to have prognostic information regarding mortality among patients with CHF and seem to provide incremental information to established clinical risk markers.