• Improving Endoscopic Retrograde Cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) Performance and Complication Rates: A Single Operator Retrospective Review from 2004‐2011

      Choi, Joshua; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Nadir, Abdul (The University of Arizona., 2014-04)
      Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) is a technically difficult procedure that requires extensive training to achieve competency. The study was undertaken to assess retrospectively whether advanced ERCP training made a difference in the competency of a physician who was performing ERCPs for eleven years before taking an extra year of advanced training in ERCP. The physician did not get any ERCP experience during the two-year formal fellowship between 1995-97, and learned ERCPs from colleagues post formal GIfellowship for four years after which he was given privileges to independently perform ERCPs. Data were collected on 172 and 213 patients who underwent ERCP before and after the training year respectively. Chi-square test was utilized to analyze the data. Baseline characteristics including height, weight, race and indications for ERCP were similar in the two groups. The results of the study showed that rates of biliary cannulation increased from the Pre-ERCP fellowship rate of 83% to 93% (Chi- Square = 9.06, p = 0.0026) and a reduction in postprocedure pancreatitis from 8.1% to 2.7% (Chi- Square = 4.56, p = 0.0327). Data in this study indicate that extra training in ERCP improves outcomes of ERCP in a single operator’s experience.
    • Does more “normal” shoulder motion after arthroplasty improve patient satisfaction?: Correlation of range of motion, patient-reported function,and patient satisfaction following shoulder arthroplasty.

      Winsor, Kimberly; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Tibor, Lisa (The University of Arizona., 2014-04)
      Objective and Hypothesis The goals of this study are to address the following questions regarding shoulder arthroplasty (TSA): (a) Does restoring range of motion (ROM) lead to increased patient satisfaction? (b) How is ability to carry out activities of daily living (ADLs) influenced by ROM? (c) How does ADL performance correlate with patient satisfaction? We hypothesize that more “normal” ROM following TSA leads to increased patient satisfaction and better performance of ADLs. Methods Patients who underwent TSA, reverse TSA, hemiarthroplasty, or humeral head resurfacing were prospectively enrolled in a shoulder arthroplasty registry. 155 patients who had preoperative and 6 month postoperative data for ROM, patient satisfaction, and performance of ADLs were included in the study. Results Of these 155 shoulders, the response rate for patient satisfaction was only 82 (52.9%), with 96.8% reporting they were “satisfied or “very satisfied”. Postoperative ROM was associated with patient satisfaction for forward flexion, adduction, and external rotation. This association demonstrated a “dose;response” relationship, as higher percentage of normal ROM correlated with higher satisfaction. Mean ADL scores were higher for patients who achieved normal ROM in each plane of motion. The greatest improvement in mean ADL score occurred when a patient achieved normal ROM for at least 3 of 5 measurements. There was also a significant association between improved ADL and higher patient satisfaction. Significance Glenohumeral arthrosis causes considerable morbidity, and rates of shoulder arthroplasty are increasing. As the predominant goals of TSA are pain relief and restoration of ROM, it is important to assess postoperative patient satisfaction. While most historic studies have focused on measures of implant performance, interest is increasing in patient-centered outcomes. Both objective and subjective outcomes should be included in future large multicenter registries. Data collected from these registries has the potential to substantially improve success rates and longevity of shoulder arthroplasty.
    • Modern Techniques of Adjunctive Pain Control Lower Opioid Use, Pain Scores, and Length-of-Stay in Patients Undergoing Posterior Spinal Fusion for Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis

      Nabar, Sean J.; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Shrader, M. Wade (The University of Arizona., 2013-04-17)
      Study Design. Retrospective analysis. Objective. To determine if the use of adjunctive pain medications (subcutaneous bupivacaine, dexmedetomidine infusion, and intravenous ketorolac) will reduce the need for opioids, reduce postoperative pain, and shorten length of hospital stay in patients with adolescent idiopathic scoliosis undergoing posterior spinal fusion. Methods. Retrospective review of children 10 to 18 years with adolescent idiopathic scoliosis receiving posterior spinal fusion surgery over the past 10 years at Phoenix Children’s Hospital. Physicians managed the patients’ pain postoperatively with adjunctive medications in addition to intravenous and oral opioids. Variables of interest were local anesthetic bupivacaine delivered subcutaneously via elastomeric pain pump, sedative/analgesic dexmedetomidine infused for up to 24 hours postoperatively, and the NSAID ketorolac delivered intravenously. These three medications were used either alone or in some combination determined by the physician’s clinical judgment. Primary outcomes analyzed were normalized opioid requirement after surgery, VAS pain scores, and length of stay in the hospital. Results. One hundred and ninety-six children were analyzed with no significant differences in demographics. Univariate analysis showed that all three adjunct medications improved outcomes. A multivariate regression model of the outcomes with respect to the three medication variables of interest was developed to analyze the effects of the three medications simultaneously. The regression analysis showed that subcutaneous bupivacaine significantly reduced normalized opioid requirement by 0.98 mg/kg (P = 0.001) and reduced VAS pain scores by 0.67 points (P = 0.004). Dexmedetomidine significantly reduced the average VAS pain scores in the first 24 hours by 0.62 points (P = 0.005). Ketorolac had no effect in the multiple regression analysis. Conclusion. The use of subcutaneous bupivacaine provides good analgesia with low pain scores. A reduction in opioid requirement is beneficial and may be directly related to presence of the bupivacaine pump, although this may be limited by potential treatment bias. The three adjunct medications improve our outcomes favorably and should be studied prospectively.
    • Central neuropathic pain in MS results from distinct upper thoracic spinal cord lesions

      Melmed, Kara R.; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Okuda, Darin (The University of Arizona., 2013-04-13)
      There is central pain complaint of burning cold pain common to patients with multiple sclerosis. Approximately 30‐40% of patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) suffer from central neuropathic pain, usually focused symmetrically in both feet and legs and often accompanied by cold allodynia and deep hyperesthesia [Osterberg et al 2005]. This condition resembles thalamic central pain, which also presents with dysfunctional pain and temperature sensations; however, thalamic pain is strictly contralateral [Craig 2007]. A distinct explanation for bilateral MS central pain likely involves a spinal lesion, yet a correlation has not been found [Svendson et al 2011]. We hypothesized that ascending projections from lumbosacral lamina I neurons to bilateral midthoracic autonomic nuclei are mirrored by descending projections [Craig 2002]; thus, a midthoracic lesion that damaged bilateral autonomic descending projections to lumbosacral lamina I neurons might underlie bilateral central pain in MS. Sympathetic interneurons in the midthoracic IMM/IML project to the brainstem but not the thalamus, implying they could be involved in homeostatic sensory integration at both brainstem and spinal levels. The lower extremity pain could be due to a lesion in the upper thoracic cord, interrupting the homeostatic integration pathway between the parabrachial nucleus in the brainstem, the (intermediomedial) and intermediolateral (IMM/IML) region of T2‐6 segments of the spinal cord, and lumbar lamina 1. To prove the existence of bilateral propriospinal projections between upper thoracic sympathetic interneurons and lumbosacral sensory (“pain”) neurons, anterograde and retrograde labeling with CTb and fluorescent tracers were performed in three animal species. In parallel, MRI analysis of MS patients with bilateral burning cold pain in the lower extremities tested the theory by examining for spinal lesions in the upper thoracic level. We tested this hypothesis with parallel clinical and neuroanatomical studies and identified a striking correspondence; MS patients with central neuropathic pain are distinguished by the presence of a lesion focused in the center of the mid‐thoracic spinal cord, and in three mammalian species neurons with bilateral descending projections to the lumbosacral superficial dorsal horn are concentrated in the autonomic intermediomedial nucleus surrounding the mid‐thoracic central canal. These findings will allow us to devise future treatments based on the newly understood neuroanatomical mechanisms.
    • Postpartum Depression Tool in Burmese Women

      Belmonte, Chari; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Veres, Sharry (The University of Arizona., 2013-04-12)
      Background: In the United States, the prevalence of postpartum depression is 10-15%. There is limited study on the appropriate postpartum screening tool for Burmese refugees in the United States. Hypothesis: The Burmese and Karenni versions of Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) are appropriate to use as a tool for screening postpartum depression in Burmese refugees. Aims: This study examines the views of Burmese refugees on the questions of Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale as a routine screening for postnatal depression and their opinion and experiences on postpartum depression. Methods: A qualitative approach was chosen to complete this study. A medical student and a Burmese interpreter participated in a one-on-one interview with 30 Burmese women sharing their views and opinions on translated EPDS and postpartum depression. Results: Thirty Burmese women were interviewed in the Phoenix area. The qualitative analysis indicate that the EPDS screening turned out to be a useful and culturally appropriate tool for the Burmese refugees to screen postpartum depression in this specific population. Conclusions: Without consistent and culturally appropriate screening for Burmese women, it would be hard to treat Burmese women for postpartum depression. Our study shows that acceptability for routine screening with a translated EPDS amongst health visitors is possible to achieve. Using the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale in Burmese and Karenni language should be considered when seeing Burmese refugees in the clinic.
    • Randomized comparison of the portable laparoscopic trainer to a standardized trainer

      Fox, Joe; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Castle, Erik (The University of Arizona., 2013-04-12)
      PURPOSE: To evaluate the effectiveness of the portable laparoscopic trainer in improving skills in novice subjects. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Twenty-nine medical students with no prior surgical experience were recruited and given a pretest of three tasks on a standardized laparoscopic trainer. Subjects were evaluated objectively and subjectively. Fifteen subjects were randomized to receive a portable laparoscopic trainer and 14 subjects were assigned to the standardized laparoscopic trainers at our facility. The portable trainer group was advised but not required to complete at least 3 hours of training. The group at the facility had a proctored 1-hour session each week for 3 weeks. Each subject was then retested and evaluated with the same pretest tasks. Objective and subjective improvements between the groups were compared. HYPOTHESIS: Both the portable and standardized trainer groups were expected to improve comparably based on objective and subjective measures. The portable group had a theoretical objective advantage due to unlimited practice time and the standardized group had the advantage of proctored training sessions, thought to increase subjective performance. RESULTS: Baseline demographics and pretest scores were similar between both groups. All students in the facility group completed the three 1-hour proctored sessions. The portable trainer group reported an average 204 minutes of practice. Objectively, the facility group did better on the post-test in overall time, and in two exercises. Subjectively, the facility group had a significant improvement compared with the portable trainer group (4.6 versus 2.4 point average increase, P=0.03). CONCLUSIONS: Both groups showed objective and subjective improvement after a 3-week period of training. The portable trainer group did report longer average practice time, but this made no significant difference in subjective or objective improvement. The portable laparoscopic trainer is an effective method for improvement of basic inferior compared to proctored sessions on a standard trainer.
    • Determining variable contagiousness of MRSA by setting

      Routh, Joshua; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Panchanathan, Sarada (The University of Arizona., 2013-03)
      Objective and Hypothesis Methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is currently a major cause of skin and soft tissue infections (SSTI) in the United States. In order to characterize the spread of MRSA in the pediatric population we built a probabilistic, discrete-event, individual-based simulation. Specifically, our model looked at the spread of MRSA in households and at schools to determine if there was a difference in communicability between the two settings. Methods We developed a probabilistic, discrete-event, individual-based model. This model was validated using insurance billing data for skin and soft tissue infections. The first validation trained the model for two years of data, and validated it with the next two years of data. The second method trained the model in one region and validated it in another. Following the validation, the Poisson-bootstrap resampling method was used to find specific values for a contagiousness factor(CF) in households and schools. Results Both methods of validation supported the model with no statistically significant difference. The bootstrap resulted in a CFhousehold of 30.69 (95% CI [29.09, 32.29]) and a CFschool of 0.55 (95% CI [0.46 to 0.64]). Effective reproduction number for the school setting was found to be 0.0015 and 0.06 to 3.04 for households of different size. Conclusion In this study we characterize a marked difference in communicability in the household and at school, which has not previously been shown. The identification of colonization clusters in households can be used to design strategies reduce the disease burden. The model can be used to simulate and predict responses to different interventions.
    • Cognitive Effects of Music: Working Memory Is Enhanced in Healthy Older Adults After Listening to Music

      Wang, Alan; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Denburg, Natalie (The University of Arizona., 2013-03)
      Music is ubiquitous in all media, and, in the last decade, has become a potential tool for enhancing cognition. This study aimed to investigate the facilitating effect of music on working memory performance in a healthy older adult cohort. Sixty-three healthy, community-dwelling older adults who had previously undergone comprehensive neuropsychological testing were enrolled in the study. Participants were randomized into one of two groups, and were presented with a series of positive and negative musical clips. Following listening, working memory performance was tested using Wechsler Digit Span and a computerized Spatial Span task. For each task, a total score consisting of number of correct forward and backward sequences was calculated. A significant improvement in Digit Span scores was found after listening to music as compared to Digit Span scores collected ~5 years ago. Contrary to our hypothesis, this facilitative effect of music on working memory held for both positive and negative musical stimuli. It has been shown that negative music can illicit the same pleasurable feelings as positive music, and, given West’s frontal lobe hypothesis, can therefore produce the same effects on working memory as positive music.
    • Monoacylglycerol lipase exerts dual control over endocannabinoid and fatty acid pathways to support prostate cancer

      Ward, Anna; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Nomura, Daniel (The University of Arizona., 2013-03)
      Cancer cells couple heightened lipogenesis with lipolysis to produce fatty acid networks that support malignancy. Monoacylglycerol lipase (MAGL) plays a principal role in this process by converting monoglycerides, including the endocannabinoid 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG), to free fatty acids. Here, we show that MAGL is elevated in androgen-independent versus androgen-dependent human prostate cancer cell lines, and that pharmacological or RNA-interference disruption of this enzyme impairs prostate cancer aggressiveness. These effects were partially reversed by treatment with fatty acids or a cannabinoid receptor-1 (CB1) antagonist, and fully reversed by co-treatment with both agents. We further show that MAGL is part of a gene signature correlated with epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition and the stem-like properties of cancer cells, supporting a role for this enzyme in pro-tumorigenic metabolism that, for prostate cancer, involves the dual control of endocannabinoid and fatty acid pathways.
    • Patient Attitudes Regarding Medical Student Involvement in a Primary Care Setting

      Kaser, Scott; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Carroll, Andrew (The University of Arizona., 2013-03)
      Previous studies on patient comfort with medical student involvement have consistently reported positive or neutral results within multiple specialties. The objective of this study was to examine patient attitudes toward medical students in a private family practice setting. This study also looked to examine whether recent medical student interaction alters patient attitude and if patient attitude can be improved with the prospect of providing feedback. It was hypothesized that there would be a positive pre-to-post test change in patient attitudes and that patients would respond positively to the prospect of providing feedback. Ninety-nine consecutive consenting adult patients completed a self-administered questionnaire before and after their office visit, which included a medical student interaction. Patient demographics (age, gender, race, prior student exposure, # years with doctor) as well as their attitudes toward the involvement of medical students were recorded. Data were collected for 10 months at Renaissance Medical Group, a private family practice with one physician provider. Data were compiled in Excel and analyzed with STATA12. Paired two-tailed T-tests and ANOVA were used to determine statistical significance. The results demonstrated that, prior to medical student interaction on 8 of 9 measures, patients have positive attitudes toward medical students. After medical student interaction, on 7 of 9 measures, respondents changed their response to a more positive position (P<=0.05). In addition, patients demonstrated a willingness to provide feedback to the medical student, but providing this feedback would not significantly alter their patient care experience. There were also statistically significant demographic differences on specific measures. This study provides evidence that patients respond positively to medical student interaction in the private Family Medicine setting. This study also demonstrates areas in which the patient care experience can be improved and provides the basis for further study on the patient - medical student interaction.
    • Assessing the University of Arizona Medical School Admission Committee Members’ Knowledge of Predictors of Rural Practice for Medical School Applicants

      LeSueur, Philip; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Galper, Carol (The University of Arizona., 2013-03)
      Objective: There is a disparity in physician to population ratios between rural and urban Arizona. The University of Arizona Medical School has a unique opportunity to increase the supply of physicians serving in rural Arizona through its admissions process. This study is a quality improvement project which examined whether or not the admission committee members at both the Tucson and Phoenix campuses are considering probability of future rural practice when making admission decisions and if they know the evidence based predictors for rural practice. Methods: The admission committee members from the University of Arizona Medical School were asked to fill out a questionnaire regarding their preferences for future rural practitioners and if they knew the two most accurate predictors for rural practice. Results: There were 22 respondents to the survey- 12 out of 13 from Phoenix and 10 out of 14 from Tucson. Fifty-nine percent (n=13) of the total respondents listed likelihood to practice in a rural community as positively affecting their admission decision, 27 percent (n=6) said it does not affect their decision at all, and 13 percent (n=3) said it affects their decision very positively. All 22 respondents correctly identified rural background as one of the two strongest predictors of rural practice while 11 correctly identified stated interest in family practice as the other. Conclusion: The University of Arizona Medical School admissions committees are well positioned to increase the supply of rural physicians in Arizona. Even still, some of the members of the committee could benefit from education regarding accurate predictors of rural practice.
    • Prevalence of Imploding, Exploding and Ocular Headache Types in a Women’s Health Outpatient Practice

      Patel, Salma; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Files, Julia (The University of Arizona., 2013-03)
      Objectives: (i) Determine the prevalence of imploding, exploding and/or ocular headaches in women with migraine in a primary care practice of women (ii) Investigate the concordance of physician diagnosis with patient self-diagnosis of pain directionality (iii) Assess correlation between the type of headache and severity of migraines, reproductive stage, and response to acute and prophylactic treatments Background: botulinum toxin A is a drug made from the toxin produced by Clostridium botulinum that works by weakening or paralyzing certain muscles or by blocking certain nerves.17 Recent migraine trials evaluating the efficacy of botulinum toxin A therapy noted differences in the efficacy of botulinum toxin A therapy based on directionality of pain ((imploding exploding and ocular). 5,6,7 However, the prevalence of these migraine types and their responses to conventional migraine prevention therapies has not yet been assessed. Methods: 201 patients participated in structured clinician-administered interviews and completed written questionnaires. Directionality of migraines were determined by both patients and physicians. Descriptive statistics, kappa coefficients and Kruskal-Wallis tests were used to assess migraine prevalence, physician-patient diagnosis concordance and association of migraine to severity, treatment and reproductive stage respectively. Results: 201 patients were enrolled with average age of 46. All patients reported directionality of their migraine and prevalence varied depending upon the method used to assign directionality and were: 33%-42% imploding headaches with or without ocular pain, 18%-44% exploding headaches with or without ocular pain, 7%-39% had ocular pain only, and 8%-13% had imploding and exploding headaches with or without ocular pain. The concordance between physician diagnosis of headache directionality with patient written response, between physician diagnosis and patient diagnosis via selection of representative picture, and between patient diagnosis via written question and via selection of representative pictures were week to moderate using Kappa coefficient. No correlation between the type of headache and severity of migraines, reproductive stage, and response to acute and prophylactic treatments was found (p>0.05). Conclusion: Improved methods of determining pain directionality and target therapy are needed.
    • Assessing Chlamydia Rates and Screening in a Community Health Care Setting

      Keller, Rachel; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Brite, Kathleen (The University of Arizona., 2013-03)
      Introduction: Chlamydia trachomatis is the most prevalent treatable sexually transmitted disease, with peak prevalence in young women, resulting in a CDC recommendation for annual screening. A community health center in Phoenix Arizona implemented this recommendation in 2010. Objective: Determine the prevalence of Chlamydia and assess changes in screening based on a protocol for screening at a community health center. Hypothesis: The prevalence of Chlamydia in the center’s population is greater than the national average of 6.8%, and the rate of screening will have increased with a protocol in place. Methods: Data from 2011 were collected by review of 1,074 charts, noting type of visit, if symptomatic for Chlamydia, if Chlamydia screening performed and results. Data from 2008, prior to screening protocol, were obtained via review of 313 charts, recording if the women were screened and result obtained. Results: The 2011 review revealed a Chlamydia rate in the women who were screened of 8.7%: when broken down by age the prevalence ranged up to 12.5% in 16 year olds. The study also demonstrated that in 2011, after the institution of the protocol for screening, 66% of the women in the designated age group were screened for Chlamydia at the visit or in the prior year, an increase of 39 percentage points when compared with 2008. The 2008 screening rate was 27%, with 3.5% of the women having a positive result using point-of-care testing. Discussion: Transition from point-of-care testing to send out NAAT testing may have impacted the detection rate of Chlamydia in the women screened. The 2011 data demonstrate a Chlamydia prevalence of 8.7% (6.7-11.1), which based on the 95% CI is not significantly above the national average of 6.8%. The screening rate in 2011 showed a statistically and clinically significant improvement of 39 percentage points for women utilizing the clinic.
    • Success Rates for Reduction of Pediatric Distal Radius and Ulna Fractures by ED Physicians

      Kaye, Bryan; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Bulloch, Blake (The University of Arizona., 2013-03)
      Objective: To determine the success rates for reduction of pediatric distal radius and/or ulna fractures by emergency department (ED) physicians. Methods: We conducted a retrospective study of children <18 years of age who presented to a large, urban free standing children’s hospital between January 1, 2009 and December 31, 2010 with a fracture of the radius and/or ulna. Patients were excluded if they had an open fracture, were taken directly to the operating room without attempted ED manipulation, or had additional fractures besides isolated radius/ulna fractures. The primary endpoint was the proportion of successful reductions of closed forearm fractures in the ED, as defined by first orthopedic follow up visit. Results: All reductions were performed by Board certified/eligible Pediatric Emergency Medicine (PEM) physician or PEM fellow. There were a total of 15 different PEM faculty and 10 PEM fellows that were involved in the fracture reductions during the study period. There were 295 forearm fractures reduced in the ED during the study period. The mean age was 8.27 years (median 8 years; range 1 to 16) and males comprised 69.2% (n=204) of the study group. A total of 225 (76.3%) fractures were of the distal forearm and 70 involved the midshaft (23.7%). All but 67 (22.7%) patients returned for their orthopedic follow up exam. A total of 33 (14.5%) of all patients required re-manipulation at follow up; 24 in the distal forearm fracture group (22 were closed reductions and 2 open reduction with internal fixation [ORIF]), versus 9 in the midshaft group (7 closed reductions and 2 ORIF). Conclusion: The literature reveals that between 7% and 39% of children who have fracture reductions in the ED by orthopedics will require re-manipulation. Our rate of 14.5% is consistent within that range. With training, pediatric ED physicians have similar success rates as orthopedists in the reduction of forearm fractures.
    • Birth Outcomes of Diabetic Health Start Participants in 2010

      Espinoza, Magdalena; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Rumann, Sara; Henry, Sarah (The University of Arizona., 2013-03)
      In Arizona, the Health Start program, a home visiting program, aims to identify at risk (for Low-birth-weight-for-gestational-age babies) women, and educate them about maternal, child, and fetal health, and refer them to medical care throughout their pregnancy and two years post-partum. The goals of the program are to reduce low birth weight infants, reduce the number of infants and young children affected by childhood disease, and increase the number of pregnant women receiving prenatal care. During the years 2009-2010, 2,168 pregnant women received a visit from in the Health Start (HS) program. After matching and exclusions, 808 pregnant women who gave birth in Arizona in 2010 were included. Of the 808 matched HS clients, 3% (n=23) of women were identified as having diabetes (gestational, type I or type II); this group of women was examined for birth outcomes and compared to a matched 2:1 control group of non-HS Arizona women who gave birth in 2010. Known diabetic complications were compared between the groups using chi square tests. Additional birth outcomes that were measured in both groups were congenital abnormalities. The hypothesis was that women with diabetes in the HS program would have better birth outcomes as compared to the control group. The results comparing the groups were not statistically different.
    • What’s in your sample closet? A cross-sectional study to quantify the number of expired samples and to evaluate novelty and usefulness of sample closet medications

      Evans, Kari; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Brown, Steven (The University of Arizona., 2013-03)
      Background Many physicians dispense drug samples in their offices. In general, evidence suggests that drug samples provide minimal benefit to patients. Objective and Hypothesis To quantify the number of expired sample closet medications and to analyze the medications most commonly found for their novelty and usefulness. We hypothesized that the medications found in local sample closets will often be expired and will not be novel or useful. Methods We inventoried ten sample closets in primary care clinics. We quantified the number of expired medications and analyzed the 23 medications found in seven or more closets. To assess novelty, we determined if the sample medication: had a new mechanism of action, had a generic on market with same mechanism of action, and had a generic medication on market for the same indication. To assess usefulness, we determined if the sample medication had improved patient oriented outcomes, safety, and tolerability. We noted the cost of a one-month supply for the typical starting dose of each sample medication. Results Of the 12,581 drug packages and boxes we inventoried, 14% of were expired. Ninety-six percent (n=22) of sample closet medications had a generic medication on the market for the same indication and 74% (n=17) had a generic medication on the market with the same mechanism. Only 3 medications (13%) had evidence of superior patient oriented outcomes when compared to other medications for the same indication. Six medications (26%) demonstrated superior safety and tolerability. Only one medication (4%) was recommended as first line therapy in an evidence-based guideline. The mean cost for a one month supply of a typical starting dose was 178 dollars. Significance and Conclusions. Sample closet medications are often expired, have limited novelty and usefulness, and are expensive. The widespread use of sample medications should be re-examined.
    • Informational Book for Patients Newly Diagnosed With Systemic Lupus Erythematosus

      Tahan, Yarden; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Finch, William R.; Feuerstein, Burt G. (The University of Arizona., 2013-03)
      Objectives/Hypothesis To provide a useful resource for patients newly diagnosed with SLE (Sys-temic Lupus Erythematosus). Methods Surveys were distributed to patients currently living with SLE via three rheumatology offices. All surveys were completed anonymously. Survey responses were combined with per-sonal patient anecdotes as well as medically focused questions and answers to create a com-plete educational piece under the genre of narrative medicine. Results Patient survey responses provide a variety of information for patients and clinicians. Low response rate encouraged the addition of supplemental sections in the final product in or-der to create a piece with a significant amount of patient-centered information. The format therefore changed with the addition of Doctor in Training sections, highlighting answers to commonly asked patient-centered questions on SLE as well as personal anecdotes building on the narrative medicine format. Significance The combination of patient survey responses, personal anecdotes, and ques-tion/answer sections unite to provide valuable information in a unique format to patients newly diagnosed with SLE. Specifically, the survey responses give future patients a variety of view-points and tips on how to handle living with lupus while the narrative
    • Death Certification of ‘‘Suicide by Cop’’

      Neitzel, Amber Rae; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Gill, James R. (The University of Arizona., 2013-03)
      Death certification of ‘‘suicide by cop’’ is controversial among some medical examiners and coroners. We present five such deaths that were certified as suicides and discuss the medico-legal issues involved with these certifications. To certify such a death as a suicide, certain criteria should be met. Suicide by cop is a circumstance that involves competing intentional acts that may result in dichotomous determinations of the manner of death. Despite the absence of direct self-infliction, there is overwhelming evidence that these five individuals intended to end their own lives. Their use of an unusual method to accomplish this goal may inappropriately result in a reflexive certification of homicide. All of the decedents possessed weapons or a facsimile of a weapon. We present five instances of suicide by cop and contend that these types of deaths are best certified as suicides. KEYWORDS: forensic science, forensic pathology, suicide, police, gunshot wounds, manner of death
    • Safety and efficacy of lung recruitment maneuvers in post-­‐operative pediatric cardiac surgical patients

      Morandi, Tiffany; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Willis, Brigham C. (The University of Arizona., 2013-03)
      OBJECTIVE: To demonstrate the safety of lung recruitment maneuvers in post-operative pediatric cardiac surgical patients. To assess the ability of lung recruitment maneuvers to improve lung function. HYPOTHESIS: We hypothesize that ventilator recruitment strategies be well-­tolerated in cardiac patients, and that they may benefit such patients by improving physiologic variables such as lung function and oxygenation. METHODS: Sixty‐two pediatric post-operative cardiac surgical patients were randomly selected to include in this retrospective chart review. Study subjects were selected from all patients who met inclusion criteria in the year immediately following implementation of a lung recruitment protocol in a local free‐standing pediatric hospital. Physiologic variables before, during, and after lung recruitment were recorded as well as patient demographics, diagnoses, morbidities and mortality. RESULTS: A statistically significant increase in dynamic compliance of the lungs and renal non-invasive regional oximetry was noted immediately after each recruitment maneuver. There was no statistically significant change in blood pressure, heart rate or oxygen saturation during the maneuvers. There was a transient increase in central venous pressure during the maneuvers (average increase < 1 mmHg). Of the 62 patients, there were 7 cases of pneumonia and 5 cases of small pneumothorax, often resolving without intervention. Significance: Demonstrating recruitment maneuvers are safe in pediatric patients with cardiac disease will allow practitioners to confidently utilize them when caring for ventilated patients. Such patients may benefit from potential improvements in lung function and decreased ventilator-associated morbidities.
    • Diagnosis and Initial Management of Musculoskeletal Coccidioidomycosis in Children

      Ho, Aaron K.; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Shrader, M. Wade (The University of Arizona., 2013-03)
      Coccidioidomycosis is an invasive fungal infection caused by the inhalation of aerosolized spores of Coccidioides spp., which reside in the arid soil of the southwestern United States and northern Mexico. Dissemination of coccidioidomycosis is rare, and can lead to extrapulmonic diseases including meningitis, osteomyelitis, and skin and soft-tissue involvement. The purpose of this study is to report our experience with musculoskeletal coccidioidomycosis in children. We retrospectively reviewed the charts of patients with musculoskeletal infection with Coccidioides spp. at our institution from 1997 to 2010. Demographic and clinical data were collected from medical records, including the age of the patient, gender, white blood cell count, immunocompetence, length of stay, location of involvement, and initial treatment. In total, we identified 20 children with musculoskeletal coccidioidomycosis. The mean age was 12.3 years (range: 2 to 17) at time of diagnosis. Diagnostic criteria included positive imaging tests (usually MRI), serological positive titers, and/or biopsy with positive cultures. The most common presenting symptom was bone pain (100%) and just 3 (15%) patients had accompanying signs/symptoms of pulmonary infection. Only 2 (5%) patients had a white blood cell count > 15×109/L (5%). Locations of infection included the foot (24%), knee (14%), spine (19%), forearm (10%), lower leg (7%) and other sites (26%). Fluconazole was the most common antifungal agent used (75%). Surgical intervention was required in 12 (60%) of patients. This is the first series that has described musculoskeletal coccidioidomycosis exclusively in children. This study suggests that the initial presentation of this disease can be nonspecific and difficult to recognize in children. Clinicians should consider this diagnosis when faced with a musculoskeletal infection in children from the southwestern United States and northern Mexico.