Quadripolar left ventricular (LV) leads allow for several pacing configurations in candidates for cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT). Whether different pacing configurations may affect LV dyssynchrony and systolic function is not completely known. We aimed to evaluate the acute effects of different pacing vectors on LV electromechanical parameters in patients implanted with a quadripolar LV lead.
In this two-centre study, within 1 month of implantation 21 CRT patients (65 ± 8 years, 76 % men, 38 % ischemic) receiving a quadripolar LV lead (Quartet 1458Q, St Jude Medical) underwent LV capture threshold assessment, intracardiac electrogram optimization, and two-dimensional echocardiography during four pacing configurations: D1-P4, P4-RV coil, D1-RV coil, and P4-M2. LV dyssynchrony and contractile function were expressed by septal-to-lateral delay and global longitudinal strain (GLS).
LV capture threshold varied between the configurations (P
The APHEA 2 project investigated short-term health effects of particles in eight European cities. In each city associations between particles with an aerodynamic diameter of less than 10 microm (PM(10)) and black smoke and daily counts of emergency hospital admissions for asthma (0-14 and 15-64 yr), chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and all-respiratory disease (65+ yr) controlling for environmental factors and temporal patterns were investigated. Summary PM(10) effect estimates (percentage change in mean number of daily admissions per 10 microg/m(3) increase) were asthma (0-14 yr) 1.2% (95% CI: 0.2, 2.3), asthma (15-64 yr) 1.1% (0.3, 1.8), and COPD plus asthma and all-respiratory (65+ yr) 1.0% (0.4, 1.5) and 0.9% (0.6, 1.3). The combined estimates for Black Smoke tended to be smaller and less precisely estimated than for PM(10). Variability in the sizes of the PM(10) effect estimates between cities was also investigated. In the 65+ groups PM(10) estimates were positively associated with annual mean concentrations of ozone in the cities. For asthma admissions (0-14 yr) a number of city-specific factors, including smoking prevalence, explained some of their variability. This study confirms that particle concentrations in European cities are positively associated with increased numbers of admissions for respiratory diseases and that some of the variation in PM(10) effect estimates between cities can be explained by city characteristics.
The hypothesis of a genetic component in the etiology of migraine is getting a foothold. However, to explore genetic associations, precision in clinical phenotypization is crucial. For this reason, migraine-specific questionnaires, well discriminating between primary headaches, are required when large numbers of individuals need to be assessed.
We adapted and translated in two languages, German and Italian, the Finnish Migraine-Specific Questionnaire for use in family studies.
This adaptation proved to be reliable when differentiating from primary headaches, and to be in very good agreement with the standard for comparison. However, discriminating between migraine with and without aura still relays on a specialist evaluation. This article describes the validation of this questionnaire.
The Asthma Life Impact Scale (ALIS) is a disease-specific measure used to assess the quality-of-life of people with asthma. It was developed in the UK and US and has proven to be acceptable to patients, to have good psychometric properties, and to be unidimensional.
This paper reports on the adaptation and validation of the ALIS for use in representative Southern European (Italian) and Eastern European (Russian) languages.
The ALIS was translated for both cultures using the dual-panel process. The newly translated versions were then tested with asthma patients to ensure face and content validity. Psychometric properties of the new language versions were assessed via a test?re-test postal survey conducted in both countries.
It is possible that some cultural or language differences still exist between the different language versions. Further research should be undertaken to determine responsiveness. Further studies designed to determine the clinical validity of the Italian ALIS would be valuable.
Linguistic nuances were easily resolved during the translation process for both language adaptations. Cognitive debriefing interviews (Russia n=9, male=11.1%, age mean (SD)=55.4 (13.2); Italy n=15, male=66.7%, age mean (SD)=63.5 (11.2)) indicated that the ALIS was easy to read and acceptable to patients. Psychometric testing was conducted on the data (Russia n=61, age mean (SD)=40.7 (15.4); Italy n=71, male=42.6%, age mean (SD)=49.5 (14.1)). The results showed that the new versions of the ALIS were consistent (Russian and Italian Cronbach's alpha=0.92) and reproducible (Russian test-re-test=0.86; Italian test-re-test=0.94). The Italian adaptation showed the expected correlations with the NHP and the Russian adaptation showed strong correlations with the CASIS and CAFS and weak-to-moderate correlations with %FEV1 and %PEF. In both adaptations the ALIS was able to distinguish between participants based on self-reported general health, self-reported severity, and whether or not they were hospitalized in the previous week.
Authors investigated, cross-nationally, the factors, including demographic, psychiatric (including cognitive), physical, and behavioral, determining whether older people take their prescribed medication. Older adults are prescribed more medication than any other group, and poor adherence is a common reason for non-response to medication.
Researchers interviewed 3,881 people over age 65 who receive home care services in 11 countries, administering a structured interview in participants' homes. The main outcome measure was the percentage of participants not adherent to medication.
In all, 12.5% of people (N=456) reported that they were not fully adherent to medication. Non-adherence was predicted by problem drinking (OR=3.6), not having a doctor review their medication (OR=3.3), greater cognitive impairment (OR=1.4 for every one-point increase in impairment), good physical health (OR=1.2), resisting care (OR=2.1), being unmarried (OR=2.3), and living in the Czech Republic (OR=4.7) or Germany (OR=1.4).
People who screen positive for problem drinking and who have dementia (often undiagnosed) are less likely to adhere to medication. Therefore, doctors should consider dementia and problem drinking when prescribing for older adults. Interventions to improve adherence in older adults might be more effective if targeted at these groups. It is possible that medication-review enhances adherence by improving the doctor-patient relationship or by emphasizing the need for medications.
The aims were (1) to compare all cause mortality in population samples of different cultures; and (2) to cross predict fatal event by risk functions involving risk factors usually measured in cardiovascular epidemiology.
The study was a 25 year prospective cohort study. The prediction of all cause mortality was made using the multiple logistic equation as a function of 12 risk factors; the prediction of months lived after entry examination was made by the multiple linear regression using the same factors. POPULATION SAMPLES: There were five cohorts of men aged 40-59 years, from Finland (two cohorts, 1677 men), from The Netherlands (one cohort, 878 men), and from Italy (two cohorts, 1712 men).
The Finnish cohorts came from geographically defined rural areas, the Dutch cohort from a small town in central Holland, and the Italian cohorts from rural villages in northern and central Italy.
All cause mortality was highest in Finland (557 per 1000), and lower in The Netherlands (477) and in Italy (475). The solutions of the multiple logistic function showed the significant and almost universal predictive role of certain factors, with rare exceptions. These were age, blood pressure, cigarette smoking, and arm circumference (the latter with a negative relationship). Similar results were obtained when solving a multiple linear regression equation predicting the number of months lived after entry examination as a function of the same factors. The prediction of fatal events in each country, using the risk functions of the others, produced limited errors, the smallest one being -2% and the largest +11%. When solving the logistic model in the pool of all the cohorts with the addition of dummy variables for the identification of nationality, it also appeared that only a small part of the mortality differences between countries is not explained by 12 available risk factors.
A small set of risk factors seems to explain the intercohort differences of 25 year all cause mortality in population samples of three rather different cultures.
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Tobacco smoke exposure increases the risk of cancer in the liver, but little is known about the possible risk associated with exposure to ambient air pollution.
We evaluated the association between residential exposure to air pollution and primary liver cancer incidence.
We obtained data from four cohorts with enrolment during 1985-2005 in Denmark, Austria and Italy. Exposure to nitrogen oxides (NO2 and NOX), particulate matter (PM) with diameter of less than 10µm (PM10), less than 2.5µm (PM2.5), between 2.5 and 10µm (PM2.5-10) and PM2.5 absorbance (soot) at baseline home addresses were estimated using land-use regression models from the ESCAPE project. We also investigated traffic density on the nearest road. We used Cox proportional-hazards models with adjustment for potential confounders for cohort-specific analyses and random-effects meta-analyses to estimate summary hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs).
Out of 174,770 included participants, 279 liver cancer cases were diagnosed during a mean follow-up of 17 years. In each cohort, HRs above one were observed for all exposures with exception of PM2.5 absorbance and traffic density. In the meta-analysis, all exposures were associated with elevated HRs, but none of the associations reached statistical significance. The summary HR associated with a 10-µg/m(3) increase in NO2 was 1.10 (95% confidence interval (CI): 0.93, 1.30) and 1.34 (95% CI: 0.76, 2.35) for a 5-µg/m(3) increase in PM2.5.
The results provide suggestive evidence that ambient air pollution may increase the risk of liver cancer. Confidence intervals for associations with NO2 and NOX were narrower than for the other exposures.
Information about physician anaesthesiologist manpower in the countries of the European Union was collected from questionnaires sent to the delegates representing their respective countries on the European Board of Anaesthesiology. In the countries of the European Union and Switzerland and Norway 40,259 specialist anaesthesiologists are recorded. The number of anaesthesiologists in relation to population varies between as little as 4.4 and 4.6 (Ireland and UK) and as many as 15.6 (Italy), with a mean of 10.8/100,000 inhabitants. There are 11,610 physicians recorded in training in anaesthesiology. The ratio of trainees to specialists in the European Union countries was 28.8/100, varying from as low as 6.5 in France, to as high as 96.7 and 98/100 in Ireland and the UK respectively. These figures indicate a wide difference in the numbers of specialists and trainees between the European countries studied. However, the overall mean figure is close to that reported in the USA (9.2/100,000).