Cognitive and receptive language development were examined in 135 60-month-old and 137 72-month-old children for whom prenatal exposure to marijuana, cigarettes, and alcohol had been ascertained. Discriminant Function analysis revealed an association between prenatal cigarette exposure and lower cognitive and receptive language scores at 60 and 72 months. This paralleled and extended observations made with this sample at annual assessments at 12 to 48 months of age. Unlike observations made at 48 months, prenatal exposure to marijuana was not associated with the cognitive and verbal outcomes. Relatively low levels of maternal alcohol consumption did not have significant relationships with the outcome variables. The importance of assessing subtle components rather than global cognitive and language skills to detect potential behavioral teratogenic effects of the drugs being examined is discussed.
Comment In: J Dev Behav Pediatr. 1992 Dec;13(6):425-81469111
Recent studies regarding the effects of above average intelligence and neuropsychological performance have been mixed with Dodrill (1977) suggesting that above-average performances on neuropsychological test scores should not be expected when intellectual abilities are above average and Tremont, Hoffman, Scott and Adams (in press) clearly suggesting better neuropsychological skills in the higher IQ group. This paper described a reanalysis of a previously presented Canadian data-set assembled by Pauker (1980) of three hundred and sixty-three persons (152 males, 211 females) who were administered the core tests of the Halstead-Reitan Neuropsychological Test Battery (HRNTB) and the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS). The results were that subjects with higher intelligence had better neuropsychological test score performances except for the Finger Tapping with the dominant hand test.
Two large prospective cohort studies of childhood epilepsy (Nova Scotia and the Netherlands) each developed a statistical model to predict long-term outcome. We sought to evaluate the accuracy of a prognostic model based on the two studies combined.
Analyses with classification tree models and stepwise logistic regression produced predictive models for the combined dataset and the two separate cohorts. The resulting models were then externally validated on the opposite cohort. Remission was defined as no longer receiving daily medication for any length of time at the end of follow-up.
The combined cohorts yielded 1,055 evaluable patients. At the end of follow-up (>or=5 years in >96%), 622 (59%) were in remission. By using the combined data, the classification tree model and the logistic regression model predicted the outcome correctly in approximately 70%. The classification tree model split the data on epilepsy type and age at first seizure. Predictors in the logistic regression model were: seizure number before treatment, age at first seizure, absence seizures, epilepsy types of symptomatic generalized and symptomatic partial, preexisting neurologic signs, intelligence, and the combination of febrile seizures and cryptogenic partial epilepsy. When the prediction models from each cohort were cross-validated on the opposite cohort, the outcome was predicted slightly less accurately than did the model from the combined data.
Based on currently available clinical and EEG variables, predicting the outcome of childhood epilepsy may be difficult and appears to be incorrect in about one of every three patients.
The results from achievement and mental ability testing in grades 3, 5, and 6 (ages 10, 12 and 13) of about 150 Swedish urban schoolchildren (boys and girls) were analysed according to the children's physical maturity (defined by late and early peak height velocity ages) and social background (defined by father's occupation). Social background played the main role in performance on both the achievement and most of the mental ability tests. Early maturers were, in general, superior to late maturers on the mental ability tests in grade 5. On verbally loaded tests and interaction between physical maturity and social background was found--early maturers scored higher than late maturers in the "lowest" social group, while a slight trend or no difference between early and late maturers was noticed for the 'upper' social groups.
OBJECTIVE: To compare voice and speech function in patients who underwent laryngectomy with that of 2 control groups. DESIGN: A cross-sectional study comparing acoustic and temporal variables with perceptual evaluations in 3 subject groups. SETTING: University hospital in Göteborg, Sweden. SUBJECTS: Two groups of patients with laryngeal carcinoma were examined: 12 male patients who had laryngectomy and were using a tracheoesophageal prosthesis and 12 male patients treated with radical radiotherapy who had a preserved larynx. The third group consisted of 10 normal controls without laryngeal disease. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Acoustic variables were fundamental frequency, absolute fundamental frequency perturbation, speech rate, and maximum phonation time. Perceptual evaluation included 15 listeners' perceptual evaluation and the patients' self-assessment of speech intelligibility, voice quality, and speech acceptability. RESULTS: No significant acoustic or temporal differences were found between the laryngectomy and radical radiotherapy groups. There was a significant difference between the patient groups in perceptual evaluation. Both groups of patients differed from normal controls in acoustic and temporal measures, where the laryngectomy group generally deviated more from the normal controls than the patient group treated with radiotherapy. There was a weak, but significant, correlation between absolute fundamental frequency perturbation and perceived voice quality. CONCLUSIONS: Perceptual evaluations could indicate significant differences between the patients who underwent laryngectomy and irradiated patients, where the acoustic analysis failed to reflect these differences. Both patient groups could be distinguished according to acoustic and temporal measures when compared with normal controls. The acoustic analyses were more sufficient in voices without severe dysfunction.
BACKGROUND: Stress, strain, and fatigue at the workplace have previously not been studied in relation to acoustic conditions. AIMS: To examine the influence of different acoustic conditions on the work environment and the staff in a coronary critical care unit (CCU). METHOD: Psychosocial work environment data from start and end of each individual shift were obtained from three shifts (morning, afternoon, and night) for a one-week baseline period and for two four-week periods during which either sound reflecting or sound absorbing tiles were installed. RESULTS: Reverberation times and speech intelligibility improved during the study period when the ceiling tiles were changed from sound reflecting tiles to sound absorbing ones of identical appearance. Improved acoustics positively affected the work environment; the afternoon shift staff experienced significantly lower work demands and reported less pressure and strain. CONCLUSIONS: Important gains in the psychosocial work environment of healthcare can be achieved by improving room acoustics. The study points to the importance of further research on possible effects of acoustics in healthcare on staff turnover, quality of patient care, and medical errors.
The HINT provides an efficient and reliable method of assessing speech intelligibility in quiet and in noise by using an adaptive strategy to measure speech reception thresholds for sentences, thus avoiding ceiling and floor effects that plague traditional measures performed at fixed presentation levels A strong need for such a test within the Canadian Francophone population, led us to develop a French version of the HINT. Here we describe the development of this test. The Canadian French version is composed of 240-recorded sentences, equated for intelligibility, and cast into 12 phonemically balanced 20-sentence lists. Average headphone SRTs, measured with 36 adult Canadian Francophone native speakers with normal hearing, were 16.4 dBA in quiet, -3.0 dBA SNR in a 65 dBA noise front condition and -11.4 dBA SNR in a 65 dBA noise side condition. Reliability was established by means of within-subjects standard deviation of repeated SRT measurements over different lists and yielded values of 2.2 and 1.1 dB for the quiet and noise conditions, respectively.
The result of a previous study showing an association between mental development and fragile X activity in heterozygous females is given further support by similar investigations of three additional kindreds. The increased frequency of demonstrable fragile X chromosomes in mentally retarded females appears to be due to an increase in the active fragile X while the inactive marker X remains at a similar low frequency in all heterozygotes whether retarded or not. The frequencies of the active fragile X separated the normal and abnormal subjects into two distinct populations. The suggested inverse correlation between the number of lymphocytes with detectable fragile X chromosomes and advancing age can be attributed to ascertainment biases.
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