The latest medical research on Medical Administration

The research magnet gathers the latest research from around the web, based on your specialty area. Below you will find a sample of some of the most recent articles from reputable medical journals about medical administration gathered by our medical AI research bot.

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Establishing a taxonomy of potential hazards associated with communicating medical science in the age of disinformation.

BMJ Open

Disinformation on medical matters has become an increasing public health concern. Public engagement by scientists, clinicians and patient advocates can contribute towards public understanding of medicine. However, depth of feeling on many issues (notably vaccination and cancer) can lead to adverse reactions for those communicating medical science, including vexatious interactions and targeted campaigns. Our objective in this work is to establish a taxonomy of common negative experiences encountered by those communicating medical science, and suggest guidelines so that they may be circumvented.

142 prominent medical science communicators (defined as having >1000 Twitter followers and experience communicating medical science on social and traditional media platforms) were invited to take part in a survey, with 101 responses.

101 responses were analysed. Most participants experienced abusive behaviour (91.9%), including persistent harassment (69.3%) and physical violence and intimidation (5.9%). A substantial number (38.6%) received vexatious complaints to their employers, professional bodies or legal intimidation. The majority (62.4%) reported negative mental health sequelae due to public outreach, including depression, anxiety and stress. A significant minority (19.8%) were obligated to seek police advice or legal counsel due to actions associated with their outreach work. While the majority targeted with vexatious complaints felt supported by their employer/professional body, 32.4% reported neutral, poor or non-existent support.

Those engaging in public outreach of medical science are vulnerable to negative repercussions, and we suggest guidelines for professional bodies and organisations to remedy some of these impacts on front-line members.

Google Trends-based non-English language query data and epidemic diseases: a cross-sectional study of the popular search behaviour in Taiwan.

BMJ Open

This study developed a surveillance system suitable for monitoring epidemic outbreaks and assessing public opinion in non-English-speaking countries. We evaluated whether social media reflects social uneasiness and fear during epidemic outbreaks and natural catastrophes.

We used weekly epidemic incidence data obtained from the Taiwan Centers for Disease Control and online search query data obtained from Google Trends between 4 October 2015 and 2 April 2016. To validate whether non-English query keywords were useful surveillance tools, we estimated the correlation between online query data and epidemic incidence in Taiwan.

With our approach, we noted that keywords ('common cold'), ('fever') and ('cough') exhibited good to excellent correlation between Google Trends query data and influenza incidence (r=0.898, p<0.001; r=0.773, p<0.001; r=0.796, p<0.001, respectively). They also displayed high correlation with influenza-like illness emergencies (r=0.900, p<0.001; r=0.802, p<0.001; r=0.886, p<0.001, respectively) and outpatient visits (r=0.889, p<0.001; r=0.791, p<0.001; r=0.870, p<0.001, respectively). We noted that the query ('enterovirus') exhibited excellent correlation with the number of enterovirus-infected patients in emergency departments (r=0.914, p<0.001).

These results suggested that Google Trends can be a good surveillance tool for epidemic outbreaks, even in Taiwan, the non-English-speaking country. Online search activity indicates that people are concerned about epidemic diseases, even if they do not visit hospitals. This prompted us to develop useful tools to monitor social media during an epidemic because such media usage reflects infectious disease trends more quickly than does traditional reporting.

Breast cancer application protocol: a randomised controlled trial to evaluate a self-management app for breast cancer survivors.

BMJ Open

ChiCTR1900026244.

This is a randomised controlled study. Eligible participants will be allocated randomly into either an intervention group or a control group at a 1:1 ratio. The intervention group will be assigned to the self-management app ('Be-with-You'), while the control group will use a general health app ('Sham' app). The primary outcomes will include the differences between the two groups in their health literacy, problem-solving skills and self-management skills. The secondary outcomes will include group differences in self-efficacy, readiness for change and health-related quality of life. All of these outcomes will be measured at baseline and at 4 weeks and 12 weeks after intervention. In addition, usability of these two mobile apps will be measured at 4 weeks and 12 weeks after intervention. The planned sample size is 476.

The Human Subjects Ethics Sub-committee of The Hong Kong Polytechnic University approved the study (HSEARS20190922001, 24 September 2019). Dissemination of findings will occur at the local, national and international levels.

Work-related psychosocial risk factors for stress-related mental disorders: an updated systematic review and meta-analysis.

BMJ Open

The objective was to conduct an update of a previously published review and meta-analysis on the association between work-related psychosocial risk factors and stress-related mental disorders (SRD).

Medline, Embase and PsycINFO were searched for articles published between 2008 and 12 August 2019 and references of a systematic review performed for the period before 2008 were included. Primary prospective studies were included when outcome data were described in terms of SRD assessment or a dichotomous outcome, based on a validated questionnaire, and at least two levels of work-related exposure were reported (exposed vs less or non-exposed). We used GRADE to assess the evidence for the associations between risk factors and the onset of SRD.

Seventeen studies met the inclusion criteria. In total, a population of 73 874 workers from Belgium, Denmark, England, Finland, Japan, the Netherlands and Sweden were included in the meta-analysis of 14 prospective cohort studies. This meta-analysis revealed moderate evidence for associations between SRD and effort reward imbalance (OR=1.9, 95% CI 1.70 to 2.15), high job demands (OR=1.6, 95% CI 1.41 to 1.72), organisational justice (ORs=1.6 to 1.7, CIs 1.44 to 1.86), social support (ORs=1.3 to 1.4, CIs 1.16 to 1.69), high emotional demands (OR=1.6, 95% CI 1.35 to 1.84) and decision authority (OR=1.3, CI 1.20 to 1.49). No significant or inconsistent associations were found for job insecurity, decision latitude, skill discretion and bullying.

Moderate evidence was found that work-related psychosocial risk factors are associated with a higher risk of SRD. Effort-reward imbalance, low organisational justice and high job demands exhibited the largest increased risk of SRD, varying from 60% to 90%.

Nurses' decision-making about cancer patients' end-of-life skin care in Wales: an exploratory mixed-method vignette study protocol.

BMJ Open

Patients with cancer are at high risk of developing pressure ulcers at the end of life as a result of their underlying condition or cancer treatment. There are many guidelines which set out best practice with regard to end-of-life skin care. However, the complexity of palliative cancer care often means that it is challenging for nurses to make the appropriate person-centred decisions about end-of-life skin care. This study seeks to explore the perceived importance that nurses place on different factors in their end-of-life skin care for patients with cancer. The utility, face validity and content validity of a prototype decision-making tool for end-of-life skin care will also be evaluated.

A mixed-method design will be used to gather data from primary and secondary care nurses working in different hospitals and local authority areas across Wales. Clinical vignettes will be used to gather qualitative and quantitative data from nurses in individual interviews. Qualitative data will be subject to thematic analysis and quantitative data will be subject to descriptive statistical analysis. Qualitative and quantitative data will then be synthesised, which will enhance the rigour of this study, and pertinently inform the further development of an end-of-life skin care decision-making tool for patients with cancer.

Ethical approval to undertake the study has been granted by Cardiff University School of Healthcare Sciences Research Governance and Ethics Screening Committee. Informed consent will be obtained in writing from all the participants in this study. The results of this study will be disseminated through journal articles, as well as presentations at national and international conferences. We will also report our findings to patient and public involvement groups with an interest in improving cancer care, palliative care as well as skin care.

Treatment strategies for asymptomatic carotid artery stenosis in the era of lipid-lowering drugs: protocol for a systematic review and network meta-analysis.

BMJ Open

Carotid endarterectomy (CEA), carotid artery stenting (CAS) and best medical therapy (BMT) are the major treatments used for significant asymptomatic carotid artery stenosis (ACAS, ≥50%). However, the widespread use of lipid-lowering drugs in this century has improved BMT outcomes. This study aims to compare the treatment efficacy of current BMT, CEA+BMT and CAS+BMT in patients with significant ACAS.

This protocol was designed based on the guidelines of the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis Protocols. Publication time for studies will be set from 1 January 2000 to 1 June 2020. We will search three databases: PubMed, EMBASE and The Cochrane Library. Suitable randomised controlled studies will be screened. The primary outcomes will include short-term and long-term mortality, stroke and myocardial infarction. OR and HR for dichotomous data and time-to-event data with 95% CIs will be calculated. Treatment effects among different therapies will be ranked according to the surface under the cumulative ranking curve and mean rank. A comprehensive evaluation of the risk of bias, heterogeneity and transitivity will be performed before data synthesis. Consistency and evidence quality will also be assessed.

There will be no need for ethics approval as this systematic review is a summary and analysis of existing literature. Final results may be presented in international conferences or a peer-reviewed journal.

CRD42019138942.

Is reduction of routine radiograph use in patients with distal radius fractures cost effective? Analysis of data from the multicentre, randomised controlled WARRIOR trial.

BMJ Open

To assess the cost effectiveness of a reduced imaging follow-up protocol of distal radius fractures compared with usual care.

Functional outcome was assessed using the Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand (DASH) questionnaire and quality-adjusted life years (QALYs) using the EuroQol-5Dimensions-3 Levels (EQ-5D-3L). Costs were measured using self-reported questionnaires and medical records, and analysed from a societal perspective. Multiple imputation, seemingly unrelated regression analysis and bootstrapping were used to analyse the data.

Clinical overall outcomes of both groups were comparable. The difference in DASH was -2.03 (95% CI -4.83 to 0.77) and the difference in QALYs was 0.025 (95% CI -0.01 to 0.06). Patients in the reduced imaging group received on average 3.3 radiographs (SD: 1.9) compared with 4.2 (SD: 1.9) in the usual care group. Costs for radiographic imaging were significantly lower in the reduced imaging group than in the usual care group (€-48 per patient, 95% CI -68 to -27). There was no difference in total costs between groups (€-401 per patient, 95% CI -2453 to 1251). The incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER) for QALYs was -15 872; the ICER for the DASH was 198. The probability of reduced imaging being cost effective compared with usual care ranged from 0.8 to 0.9 at a willingness to pay of €20 000/QALY to €80 000/QALY.

Implementing a reduced imaging strategy in the follow-up of distal radius fractures has a high probability of being cost effective for QALYs, without decreasing functional outcome. We, therefore, recommend imaging only when clinically indicated.

The Netherlands trial register (NL4477).

Safety and effectiveness of a Tai Chi-based cardiac rehabilitation programme for chronic coronary syndrom patients: study protocol for a randomised controlled trial.

BMJ Open

NCT03936504.

We propose to conduct a multicentre randomised controlled clinical trial comprising of 150 participants with CCS. The patients will be randomly assigned in a 1:1 ratio into two groups. The intervention group will participate in a supervised TCCRP held three times a week for 3 months. The control group will receive supervised conventional exercise rehabilitation held three times a week for 3 months. The primary and secondary outcomes will be assessed at baseline, 1 month, 3 months after intervention and after an additional 3-month follow-up period. Primary outcome measures will include a score of 36-Item Short Form Survey and Chinese Perceived Stress Scale. The secondary outcome measures will include body composition, cardiopulmonary exercise test, respiratory muscle function, locomotor skills, echocardiogram, New York Heart Association classification, heart rate recovery time and laboratory examination. Other measures also include Seattle Angina Scale, Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index, Patient Health Questionnaire-9, Generalized Anxiety Disorder-7 and Berg Balance Scale. All adverse events will be recorded and analysed.

This study conforms to the principles of the Declaration of Helsinki and relevant ethical guidelines. Ethical approval has been obtained from the Ethics Committee of Chinese People's Libration Army General Hospital (approval number: S2019-060-02). Findings from this study will be published and presented at conferences for widespread dissemination of the results.

Heparin-binding protein as a biomarker of gastrointestinal dysfunction in critically ill patients: a retrospective cross-sectional study in China.

BMJ Open

To investigate the association of plasma heparin-binding protein (HBP) with the development of acute gastrointestinal injury (AGI) in critically ill patients.

HBP levels were recorded twice or more within 5 days after admission. The initial AGI grades and the worst AGI grades within 5 days after admission, the number of patients receiving total enteral nutrition (TEN) and the number of patients with feeding intolerance (FI) and with sepsis were also recorded, along with some clinical severity and outcome variables.

From June 2018 to May 2019, 221 patients were enrolled in this study. We divided patients into four groups based on the HBP values: HBP ≤20 ng/mL, 20<HBP ≤50 ng/mL, 50<HBP ≤100 ng/mL and HBP >100 ng/mL. Significant differences were found in the ratios of AGI deterioration and TEN and the incidence rates of FI and sepsis among the four groups. Differences were also found among the groups regarding the worst AGI grades. The area under receiver operating characteristic curves for AGI deterioration, severe AGI (grades II or above), TEN and FI were 0.738 (p=0.001), 0.774 (p<0.001), 0.810 (p<0.001) and 0.729 (p=0.001), respectively. The optimal HBP cut-off values for AGI deterioration and severe AGI were 53.27 ng/mL and 41.26 ng/mL, respectively. However, no differences in ICU duration or 28-day mortality were found.

HBP levels were associated with gastrointestinal dysfunction in critically ill patients. Increased HBP was positively correlated with sepsis but it was not correlated with 28-day mortality.

How good is online information on fibromyalgia? An analysis of quality and readability of websites on fibromyalgia in Spanish.

BMJ Open

To assess the content, quality and readability of websites with information on fibromyalgia in Spanish.

Websites were retrieved entering the keyword 'fibromyalgia' in Google, Yahoo! and Bing, and by searching records of patients associations in Spain and Latin America. The Bermúdez-Tamayo and DISCERN questionnaires were employed for evaluating quality and content, and INFLESZ for readability. Statistical analysis was conducted using IBM SPSSV.24 (Chicago, USA).

Three hundred and five websites were found. After applying the exclusion criteria, 73 websites were analysed. Websites retrieved by search engines obtained median scores of 27.0 (interquartile interval (IQI): 24.5-32.0) with DISCERN, 35.0 (IQI: 31.0-40.5) with Bermúdez-Tamayo and 53.7 (IQI: 47.4-56.2) with INFLESZ, whereas those from patients associations scored 21.0 (IQI: 19.2-23.8), 26.0 (IQI: 25.0-31.0) and 51.7 (IQI: 47.9-55.1), respectively. In general, content was not up-to-date.

Overall quality was medium-low, content quality was very low and readability was poor. Further effort is needed to guarantee meeting quality criteria and accessing updated, relevant, and legible information.This study exposes the quality and readability of websites on fibromyalgia in Spanish, which can help healthcare workers to better appraise this resource and its potential influence on the development of the pathology.

Artificial intelligence method to classify ophthalmic emergency severity based on symptoms: a validation study.

BMJ Open

We investigated the usefulness of machine learning artificial intelligence (AI) in classifying the severity of ophthalmic emergency for timely hospital visits.

A total of 1681 patients were included.

Model performance was evaluated using accuracy, precision, recall and F1 scores.

The accuracy of the model was 99.05%. The precision of each class (red, orange, yellow and green) was 100%, 98.10%, 92.73% and 100%. The recalls of each class were 100%, 100%, 98.08% and 95.33%. The F1 scores of each class were 100%, 99.04%, 95.33% and 96.00%.

We provided support for an AI method to classify ophthalmic emergency severity based on symptoms.

Exploring the multiple policy objectives for primary care networks: a qualitative interview study with national policy stakeholders.

BMJ Open

English general practice is suffering a workforce crisis, with general practitioners retiring early and trainees reluctant to enter the profession. To address this, additional funding has been offered, but only through participation in collaborations known as primary care networks (PCNs). This study explored national policy objectives underpinning PCNs and the mechanisms expected to help achieve these, from the perspective of those driving the policy.

Interviews were transcribed, coded and organised thematically according to policy objectives and mechanisms. Thematic data were organised into a matrix so prominent elements can be identified and emphasised accordingly. Themes were considered alongside objectives embedded in PCN draft service delivery requirements.

Three themes of policy objectives and associated mechanisms were identified: (1) supporting general practice, (2) place-based interorganisational collaboration and (3) primary care 'voice'. Interviewees emphasised and sequenced themes differently, suggesting meeting objectives for one was necessary to realise another. Interviewees most closely linked to primary care emphasised the importance of theme 1. The objectives embedded in draft service delivery requirements primarily emphasised theme 2.

These policy objectives are not mutually exclusive but may imply different approaches to prioritising investment or necessitate more explicit temporal sequencing, with the stabilisation of a struggling primary care sector probably needing to occur before meaningful engagement with other community service providers can be achieved or a 'collective voice' is agreed. Multiple objectives create space for stakeholders to feel dissatisfied when implementation details do not match expectations, as the negative reaction to draft service delivery requirements illustrates. Our study offers policy makers suggestions about how confidence in the policy might be restored by crafting delivery requirements so all groups see opportunities to meet favoured objectives.