We conducted a longitudinal study to determine the annual rate decline in pulmonary function measurements in male swine confinement workers. For comparison, a grain farming group and a nonfarming rural-dwelling control group were also chosen for the longitudinal study. Two hundred seventeen swine confinement workers, 218 grain farmers, and 179 nonfarming control subjects had valid pulmonary function measurements at the baseline observation conducted in 1990 to 1991 and at the second observation conducted in 1994 to 1995. The swine confinement workers were younger (mean age=38.3+/-11.7 [SD] years) than the nonfarming control subjects (42.6+/-10.4 years) and the grain farmers (44.5+/-11.9 years). When stratified by age, nonfarming control subjects had the lowest mean annual rate decline in FEV1 and FVC in all age categories. The swine confinement workers had the largest annual rate decline in FEV1 and FVC, and this was most obvious in the middle age categories. After controlling for age, height, smoking, and baseline pulmonary function, swine confinement workers had excess annual decline of 26.1 mL in FEV1 (p=0.0005), 33.5 mL in FVC (p=0.0002), and 42.0 mL/s in forced expiratory flow between 25% and 75% of FVC (FEF[25-75%]) (p=0.02) over nonfarming control subjects. Grain farmers had excess annual decline of 16.4 mL in FEV1 (p=0.03), 26.7 mL in FVC (p=0.002), and 11.2 mL/s in FEF(25-75%) (p=0.38) over control subjects. These findings suggest that workers engaged in the swine industry and grain farmers appear prone to accelerated yearly losses in lung function and may therefore be at risk for the future development of chronic airflow limitation.
This study investigated the accuracy and inter-rater reliability of 'specialized' physical therapists in the auscultation of tape-recorded lung sounds. In addition, a correlation was investigated between accuracy of interpretation and the number of years of specialization in the field of cardiorespiratory physical therapy. This research follows an earlier study which investigated the accuracy and inter-rater reliability of auscultating tape-recorded lung sounds in a 'non-specialized' cohort of physical therapists. The subjects were 26 'specialized' cardiorespiratory physical therapists working in acute urban teaching hospitals. These individuals were required to have been practising currently and exclusively for at least one year in the area of cardiorespiratory physical therapy. Participants listened with a stethoscope to five different sounds and identified them from a standardized list of terms. One of three tapes with the same lung sounds in different order was randomly selected for each physical therapist. The percentage of correct answers for all subjects was calculated. An accurate response in the detection of lung sounds was arbitrarily defined as a percentage of correct answers of 70% or greater. The difference between the pooled correct response rate of 50% and the arbitrarily set value of 70% was statistically significant (z = 2.23, p
The study population comprised 52 male printers and 52 controls. Each person was interviewed about job history, general health, and work-related symptoms. Symptoms from eyes and airways, neurological symptoms, and general symptoms were recorded. A lung function test and a measurement of the sense of smell were also carried out. The printers had significantly more eye, airway, and neurological symptoms than the controls; the main complaints being irritation of eyes, nose, throat, and a reduced sense of taste. The neurological symptoms were disorders of vision, vertigo, feeling of intoxication, and headache. Furthermore, abdominal pain and flatulence occurred more often among the printers. The symptoms showed no relation to age or job seniority, but neurological and general symptoms were related to shift work. No difference in lung function was found between the two groups. The printers had a slightly lower threshold of smell than the controls. Although the total load due to organic solvents and dust in the air was far below legal limits, the number of magnitude of symptoms experienced by the printers exceeded what is supposed when norms for workroom exposure are set. It is suggested that either the irritative effects of solvents are underestimated or the assumption of additive effects when great numbers of solvents are found does not hold true. A reduction of the number of solvents by eliminating the most toxic solvents or by using dyes without solvents is suggested.
We wanted to study the effects of a 600 micrograms inhaled salbutamol dose on the cardiovascular and respiratory autonomic nervous regulation in eight children suffering from bronchial asthma.
In this randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover study we continuously measured electrocardiogram, finger systolic arterial pressure (SAP) and flow-volume spirometry at baseline as well as 20 min and 2 h after the drug inhalation. The R-R interval (the time between successive heart beats) and SAP variabilities were assessed by using spectral analysis. Baroreflex sensitivity was assessed by using cross-spectral analysis.
Salbutamol significantly decreased the total and low frequency (LF) variability of R-R intervals as well as the high frequency (HF) variability of R-R intervals and of SAP. Salbutamol significantly increased the LF/HF ratio of R-R intervals and of SAP, minute ventilation, heart rate and forced pulmonary function in comparison with placebo. The weight of the subjects significantly correlated positively with baroreflex sensitivity and negatively with heart rate after the salbutamol inhalation.
We conclude that the acute salbutamol inhalation decreases cardiovagal nervous responsiveness, increases sympathetic dominance in the cardiovascular autonomic balance, and has a tendency to decrease baroreflex sensitivity in addition to improved pulmonary function.
The James iCAPTURE Centre for Cardiovascular and pulmonary Research, Heart and Lung Institute, St Paul's Hospital, Providence Healthcare, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.
Acute exacerbation of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (AECOPD) is the leading reason for hospitalization in Canada and a significant financial burden on hospital resources. Identifying factors that influence the time a patient spends in the hospital and readmission rates will allow for better use of scarce hospital resources.
To determine the factors that influence length of stay (LOS) in the hospital and readmission for patients with AECOPD in an inner-city hospital.
Using the Providence Health Records, a retrospective review of patients admitted to St Paul's Hospital (Vancouver, British Columbia) during the winter of 2006 to 2007 (six months) with a diagnosis of AECOPD, was conducted. Exacerbations were classified according to Anthonisen criteria to determine the severity of exacerbation on admission. Severity of COPD was scored using the Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease (GOLD) criteria. For comparative analysis, severity of disease (GOLD criteria), age, sex and smoking history were matched.
Of 109 admissions reviewed, 66 were single admissions (61%) and 43 were readmissions (39%). The number of readmissions ranged from two to nine (mean of 3.3 readmissions). More than 85% of admissions had the severity of COPD equal to or greater than GOLD stage 3. The significant indicators for readmission were GOLD status (P
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The aim of this study was to assess population-based changes in incidence, treatment, and in short- and long-term survival of patients with acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) over 23 years.
Analysis of all patients in Iceland who fulfilled the consensus criteria for ARDS in 1988-2010. Demographic variables, Acute Physiology and Chronic Health Evaluation II (APACHE II) scores and ventilation parameters were collected from hospital charts.
The age-standardised incidence of ARDS during the study period was 7.2 cases per 100,000 person-years and was increased by 0.2 cases per year (P?
Welders are exposed to airborne particles from the welding environment and often develop symptoms work-related from the airways. A large fraction of the particles from welding are in the nano-size range. In this study we investigate if the welders' airways are affected by exposure to particles derived from gas metal arc welding in mild steel in levels corresponding to a normal welding day.
In an exposure chamber, 11 welders with and 10 welders without work-related symptoms from the lower airways and 11 non-welders without symptoms, were exposed to welding fumes (1 mg/m3) and to filtered air, respectively, in a double-blind manner. Symptoms from eyes and upper and lower airways and lung function were registered. Blood and nasal lavage (NL) were sampled before, immediately after and the morning after exposure for analysis of markers of oxidative stress. Exhaled breath condensate (EBC) for analysis of leukotriene B4 (LT-B4) was sampled before, during and immediately after exposure.
No adverse effects of welding exposure were found regarding symptoms and lung function. However, EBC LT-B4 decreased significantly in all participants after welding exposure compared to filtered air. NL IL-6 increased immediately after exposure in the two non-symptomatic groups and blood neutrophils tended to increase in the symptomatic welder group. The morning after, neutrophils and serum IL-8 had decreased in all three groups after welding exposure. Remarkably, the symptomatic welder group had a tenfold higher level of EBC LT-B4 compared to the two groups without symptoms.
Despite no clinical adverse effects at welding, changes in inflammatory markers may indicate subclinical effects even at exposure below the present Swedish threshold limit (8 h TWA respirable dust).
Cites: Int Arch Allergy Appl Immunol. 1973;45(1):57-604580380
History of acute symptoms (cough, wheezing, shortness of breath, fever, stuffy nose, and skin itching/rash) following exposure to grain dust was obtained from 661 male and 535 female current and former farmers. These symptoms were relatively common: 60% of male and 25% of female farmers reported at least one such symptom on exposure to grain dust. Association of cough, wheezing, shortness of breath, and stuffy nose with skin reactivity and capacity to form IgE is consistent with an allergic nature of these symptoms. Barley and oats dust were perceived as dust most often producing symptoms. On the other hand, grain fever showed a different pattern, i.e., it was not associated with either skin reactivity or total IgE. Smoking might modify the susceptibility to react to grain dust with symptoms. Only those who reported wheezing on exposure to grain dust may have an increased risk to develop chronic airflow obstruction.
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.