BACKGROUND: To date only a few studies have evaluated the long-term influence of smoking and smoking cessation on periodontal health. The present study, therefore, was undertaken with the aim to prospectively investigate the influence of smoking exposure over time on the periodontal health condition in a targeted population before and after a follow-up interval of 10 years. METHODS: The primary study base consisted of a population of occupational musicians that was investigated the first time in 1982 and scheduled for reinvestigation in 1992 and 2002. The 1992 investigation included 101 individuals from the baseline study constituting a prospective cohort including 16 smokers, who had continued to smoke throughout the entire length of the 10-year period; 28 former smokers who had ceased smoking an average of approximately 9 years before the commencement of the baseline study; 40 non-smokers, who denied ever having smoked tobacco; and 17 individuals whose smoking pattern changed or for whom incomplete data were available. The clinical and radiographic variables used for the assessment of the periodontal health condition of the individual were frequency of periodontally diseased sites (probing depth > or =4 mm), gingival bleeding (%), and periodontal bone height (%). The oral hygiene standard was evaluated by means of a standard plaque index. RESULTS: The changes over the 10 years with respect to frequency of diseased sites indicated an increased frequency in continuous smokers versus decreased frequencies in former smokers and non-smokers. Controlling for age and frequency of diseased sites at baseline, the 10-year change was significantly associated with smoking (P
Epidemiological data reveal that the prevalence of dental caries in western countries has decreased in recent decades. The aim of this study was to investigate how dentists and dental hygienists assess dental caries lesions in bite-wing radiographs between 1983 and 2003. All dentists and dental hygienists in Public Dental Health in Uppsala County were offered to take part in the study. The participants assessed manifest and initial caries lesions in eight bite-wing radiographs from three patients individually. An X-ray viewer and binoculars were used. The assessments were repeated in the same radiographs every five years, a total of five times, between 1983 and 2003. In the different test occasions 80-103 dentists and 11-48 dental hygienists participated. The registration of dental caries changed between 1983 and 2003. The number of manifest lesions registered by dentists decreased between 1983 and 1988, but were stable after 1988. Dental hygienists showed no changes in the registration of manifest lesions during the study. Initial lesions registered by dentists and dental hygienists increased between 1988 and 1998. Assessments of initial caries lesions displayed a wider range than manifest lesions. Increasing age and more years in the profession resulted in fewer registered initial caries lesions. Dental hygienists had a tendency to register less caries than dentists. In conclusion, the result of the study indicate that inclusion of initial caries lesions in epidemiological reports should lead to a reduction in reliability. The changes in assessments of manifest caries lesions that took place in the 19805s should be considered when epidemiological data are evaluated.
The aim of this study was to compare the estimation ability of a dental hygienist to that of a dentist when, independently, recording the oral health status and treatment need in a population of elderly, receiving home nursing. Seventy-three persons, enrolled in a home nursing long-time care programme, were recruited. For the oral examination a newly developed protocol with comparatively blunt measurement variables was used. The oral examination protocol was tested for construct validity and for internal consistency reliability. Statistical analyses were performed using Wilcoxon matched pairs signed rank sum test for testing differences, while inter-examiner agreement was estimated by calculating the kappa-values. Comparing the two examiners, good agreement was demonstrated for all mucosal recordings, colour, form, wounds, blisters, mucosal index, and for the palatal but not the lingual mucosa. For the latter, the dental hygienist recorded significantly more changes. The dental hygienist also recorded significantly higher plaque index values. Also regarding treatment intention and treatment need, the dental hygienist's estimation was somewhat higher. In conclusion, when comparing the dental hygienist's and the dentist's ability to estimate oral health status, treatment intention, and treatment need, some differences were observed, the dental hygienist tending to register "on the safe side", calling attention to the importance of inter-examiner calibration. However, for practical purpose the inter-examiner agreement was acceptable, constituting a promising basis for future out-reach activities.
The objective of the study was to compare the acceptability of occlusion among orthodontically treated and untreated adolescents in eight Finnish municipal health centres applying different timing of treatment. A random sample of 16- and 18-year olds (n = 2325) living in these municipalities was invited for a clinical examination, and 1109 adolescents participated. Two calibrated orthodontists blindly examined the participants for the acceptability of occlusion with the Occlusal Morphology and Function Index. The history of orthodontic treatment was elicited by questionnaire. The impact of the history and timing of treatment on the acceptability of occlusion was analysed with logistic regression analysis. The history of orthodontic treatment decreased the odds for acceptability of morphology [odds ratio (OR) = 0.719, 95 per cent confidence limit (CL), P = 0.016] and acceptability of function (OR = 0.724, 95 per cent CL, P = 0.018). The early timing of treatment increased the odds for acceptability of morphology (OR = 1.370, 95 per cent CL, P = 0.042) and of function (OR = 1.420, 95 per cent CL, P = 0.023). No substantial differences were observed in the acceptability of occlusion between the early and late timing health centres. However, the proportion of subjects with acceptable occlusion was slightly higher in the early than in the late timing group. These findings suggest that when examining the effect of timing on treatment outcome, factors other than acceptability of occlusion should be concomitantly evaluated. Consequently, in this context, the duration and cost of treatment need to be investigated.
The aim of this study was to investigate the accuracy of 17 forensic odontologists identifying individuals from two sets of radiographs, one regarded as ante- and the other as postmortem. Each case was observed twice and only one pair out of 31 did not match. The observers were asked to comment about each case, classifying it as easy, moderate or difficult. The results show that one observer was totally correct in the first analysis while four observers made no errors the second time. In the first evaluation 14 observers made between one and seven errors and two observers made 11 errors each. In the second evaluation 12 observers made between one and seven errors and one observer made 13 errors. At the first evaluation, the observers judged 18 of the cases as easy, eight as medium and five as difficult. At the second evaluation, the observers pronounced 13 of the cases as easy, 13 as medium and five as difficult. The corresponding values for the authors were 6, 12 and 13. Most of the mistakes were made on the cases with no restorations and the incorrect answers were found mostly among the difficult cases. In practical forensic work however additional dental chart information is usually available to the forensic odontologist.
In the emergency department (ED) Registered Nurses (RNs) often perform triage, i.e. the sorting and prioritizing of patients. The allocation of acuity ratings is commonly based on a triage scale. To date, three reliable 5-level triage scales exist, of which the Canadian Triage and Acuity Scale (CTAS) is one. In Sweden, few studies on ED triage have been conducted and the organization of triage has been found to vary considerably with no common triage scale. The aim of this study was to investigate the accuracy and concordance of emergency nurses acuity ratings of patient scenarios in the ED setting. Totally, 423 RNs from 48 (62%) Swedish EDs each triaged 18 patient scenarios using the CTAS. Of the 7,550 triage ratings, 57.6% were triaged in concordance with the expected outcome and no scenario was triaged into the same triage level by all RNs. Inter-rater agreement for all RNs was kappa = 0.46 (unweighted) and kappa = 0.71 (weighted). The fact that the kappa-values are only moderate to good and the low concordance between the RNs call for further studies, especially from a patient safety perspective.
OBJECTIVE: To determine the accuracy and describe the quality of nursing documentation of pressure ulcers in a hospital care setting. DESIGN: A cross-sectional survey was used comparing retrospective audits of nursing documentation of pressure ulcers to previous physical examinations of patients. SETTING AND SUBJECTS: All inpatient records (n = 413) from February 5, 2002, at the surgical/orthopedic (n = 144), medical (n = 182), and geriatric (n = 87) departments of one Swedish University hospital. INSTRUMENTS: The European Pressure Ulcer Advisory Panel data collection form and the Comprehensiveness In Nursing Documentation. METHODS: All 413 records were reviewed for presence of notes on pressure ulcers; the findings were compared with the previous examination of patients' skin condition. Records with notes on pressure ulcers (n = 59) were audited using the European Pressure Ulcer Advisory Panel and Comprehensiveness In Nursing Documentation instruments. RESULTS: The overall prevalence of pressure ulcers obtained by audit of patient records was 14.3% compared to 33.3% when the patients' skin was examined. The lack of accuracy was most evident in the documentation of grade 1 pressure ulcers. The quality of the nursing documentation of pressure ulcer (n = 59) was generally poor. CONCLUSIONS: Patient records did not present valid and reliable data about pressure ulcers. There is a need for guidelines to support the care planning process and facilitate the use of research-based knowledge in clinical practice. More attention must be focused on the quality of clinical data to make proper use of electronic patient records in the future.
BACKGROUND: As staff members prioritize medical resources for patients, it is imperative to find out whether their assessments of patients' health status agree with patients' assessments. The degree to which physicians and nurses can identify the distress, anxiety, and depression experienced by adolescents recently diagnosed with cancer was examined here. PROCEDURE: Adolescents undergoing chemotherapy (13-19 years, n = 53), physicians (n = 48), and nurses (n = 53) completed a structured telephone interview, 4-8 weeks after diagnosis or relapse, investigating disease and treatment-related distress, anxiety, and depression. RESULTS: The accuracy of staff ratings of physical distress could be considered acceptable. However, problems of a psychosocial nature, which were frequently overestimated, were difficult for staff to identify. Staff underestimated the distress caused by mucositis and worry about missing school more than they overestimated distress. These aspects were some of the most prevalent and overall worst according to the adolescents. Both physicians and nurses overestimated levels of anxiety and depression. Nurses tended to show higher sensitivity than physicians for distress related to psychosocial aspects of distress, while physicians tended to show higher accuracy than nurses for physical distress. CONCLUSIONS: Staff was reasonably accurate at identifying physical distress in adolescents recently diagnosed with cancer whereas psychosocial problems were generally poorly identified. Thus, the use of staff ratings as a "test" to guide specific support seems problematic. Considering that the accuracy of staff ratings outside a research study is probably lower, identification of and action taken on adolescent problems in relation to cancer diagnosis and treatment need to rely on direct communication.
Clinical databases are increasingly being employed to evaluate the quality of treatments, including patients with peripheral vascular disease. Valid data is vital to the value of these analyses.
To assess the validity of clinical data in a population-based national vascular registry.
Traditional reproducibility study was supplemented by refilling of data by an independent observer, thereby creating three data sets for comparison.
Twenty prospectively recorded electronic forms from each department were selected randomly from the Danish National Vascular Registry. Data forms were refilled by the surgeons of the department concerned, and by an independent member of the board of the Danish National Vascular Registry. Refilling was performed blinded to the original forms.
A high degree of accuracy of clinical data can be achieved. An independent observer makes it possible to evaluate the classification of observer dependent parameters and explain differences in the reproducibility of data.
BACKGROUND: Atrophy of the medial part of the temporal lobe is seen in Alzheimer's disease (AD). We studied the usefulness of CT scan measurements of the medial temporal lobe (MTL) in elderly with suspected dementia. METHODS: MTL measurements were done with callipers by three raters, blinded to the diagnosis and to each other, on scans from 110 subjects with suspected dementia from a memory clinic in Oslo, Norway and 36 participants included in the OPTIMA study, Oxford, England. RESULTS: The correlation between the MTL and the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) was very low, and there was a marked overlap between Alzheimer and cognitively unimpaired subjects. The inter-rater reliability was lower on the Norwegian than on the OPTIMA scans (R = 0.48 vs R = 0.68), but this was partly explained by larger MTL readings (4.5 mm after adjustment for age, gender and MMSE sumscore) on the OPTIMA scans as the reliability was confounded by MTL width and was higher at larger MTLs. A wider scan width (3 mm vs 2 mm in the OPTIMA scans) can also contribute to differences in reliability. CONCLUSIONS: The published threshold values regarding the CT scan MTL measurements for the diagnosis of AD may be invalid when applied by other radiology departments without a local standardisation and validation.