(1/883) Role of schools in the transmission of measles in rural Senegal: implications for measles control in developing countries.
Patterns of measles transmission at school and at home were studied in 1995 in a rural area of Senegal with a high level of vaccination coverage. Among 209 case children with a median age of 8 years, there were no deaths, although the case fatality ratio has previously been 6-7% in this area. Forty percent of the case children had been vaccinated against measles; the proportion of vaccinated children was higher among secondary cases (47%) than among index cases (33%) (prevalence ratio = 1.36, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.04-1.76). Vaccinated index cases may have been less infectious than unvaccinated index cases, since they produced fewer clinical cases among exposed children (relative risk = 0.55, 95% CI 0.29-1.04). The secondary attack rate was lower in the schools than in the homes (relative risk = 0.31, 95% CI 0.20-0.49). The school outbreaks were protracted, with 4-5 generations of cases being seen in the two larger schools. Vaccine efficacy was found to be 57% (95% CI -23 to 85) in the schools and 74% (95% CI 62-82) in the residential compounds. Measles infection resulted in a mean of 3.8 days of absenteeism per case, though this did not appear to have an impact on the children's grades. Among the index cases, 56% of children were probably infected by neighbors in the community, and 7% were probably infected at health centers, 13% outside the community, and 24% in one of the three schools which had outbreaks during the epidemic. However, most of the school-related cases occurred at the beginning and therefore contributed to the general propagation of the epidemic. To prevent school outbreaks, it may be necessary to require vaccination prior to school entry and to revaccinate children in individual schools upon detection of cases of measles. Multidose measles vaccination schedules will be necessary to control measles in developing countries. (+info)
(2/883) Resource utilization and work or school loss reported by patients with diabetes: experience in diabetes training programs.
Diabetes exerts a major economic impact on healthcare in the United States both in terms of direct and indirect costs. Diabetes management and education programs designed to assist patients in achieving more optimal glycemic control represent a potential mechanism for reducing the morbidity and costs associated with diabetes. The relationship between HbA1c and patient hospitalizations and between HbA1c and days lost from work or school related to diabetes within the past year were evaluated. A cohort of 2359 patients with diabetes (188 type I, 2171 type II) referred to a comprehensive diabetes self-management training program was included in the analyses. Overall, 350 (14.8%) patients reported hospitalization, and 212 (9.0%) reported days lost from work or school. Patients with type I diabetes reported more hospitalizations (26.1% vs 13.9% and days lost (19.2% vs 8.1%) than type II patients. For the hospitalization outcome, the multivariate analyses indicated that younger age, the number of co-morbidities, and the duration of diabetes exerted a greater influence on the reported numbers of hospitalization than glycemic control. For the days lost outcome, the multivariate analyses indicated that there was a marginally significant association between patients with poor glycemic control and reported work or school loss related to diabetes (odds ratio = 1.5; 95% confidence interval, 1.0-2.2). These data suggest that interventions that improve glycemic control may decrease indirect costs related to diabetes. (+info)
(3/883) Socioeconomic status and morbidity in the last years of life.
OBJECTIVES: This study evaluated the effect of socioeconomic status, as characterized by level of education, on morbidity and disability in the last years of life. METHODS: The analysis used data from the National Health Interview Survey (1986-1990), with mortality follow-up through December 1991. RESULTS: Among 10,932 decedents 50 years or older at baseline interview, educational attainment was inversely associated with long-term limitation of activity, number of chronic conditions, number of bed days, and days of short hospital stay during the year preceding the interview. CONCLUSIONS: Decedents with higher socioeconomic status experienced lower morbidity and disability and better quality of life even in their last years of life. (+info)
(4/883) Treatment costs and loss of work time to individuals with chronic lymphatic filariasis in rural communities in south India.
This year-round case-control study investigated treatment costs and work time loss to people affected by chronic lymphatic filariasis in two rural communities in south India. About three-quarters of the patients sought treatment for filariasis at least once and 52% of them paid for treatment, incurring a mean annual expenditure of Rs. 72 (US $2.1; range Rs. 0-1360 (US $39.0)). Doctor's fees and medicines constituted 57% and 23% of treatment costs. The proportion of people seeking treatment was smaller and treatment costs constituted a higher proportion of household income in lower income groups. Most patients did not leave work, but spent only 4.36+/-3.41 h per day on economic activity compared to 5.25+/-3.52 h worked by controls; the mean difference of 0.89+/-4.20 h per day was highly significant (P<0.01). This loss of work time is perpetual, as chronic disease manifestations are mostly irreversible. An estimated 8% of potential male labour input is lost due to the disease. Regression analyses revealed that lymphatic filariasis has a significant effect on work time allotted to economic activity (P<0.05) but not on absenteeism from work (P>0.05). Female patients spent 0.31+/-1.42 h less on domestic activity compared to their matched controls (P<0.05). The results clearly show that the chronic form of lymphatic filariasis inflicts a considerable economic burden on affected individuals. (+info)
(5/883) Validation of an asthma symptom diary for interventional studies.
OBJECTIVE: The Pediatric Asthma Diary was developed and validated to assess efficacy of interventions in children with asthma. DESIGN, PATIENTS, AND SETTING: Diary validation was performed in a three week, prospective study of 106 children aged 6-14 years with asthma. Children were classified at baseline as either stable (requiring no additional asthma treatment) or new onset/worse (requiring either addition of or increase in anti-inflammatory treatment). RESULTS: A daytime symptom scale and "day without asthma" were defined from diary questions. Both measures demonstrated significant validity and responsiveness to anti-inflammatory treatment. The stable group experienced a higher percentage of days without asthma during week 1 compared with the new onset/worse group (39.6% v 11.6%, respectively). The new onset/worse patients experienced significant improvement in days without asthma (24.5%) compared with stable patients (6.4%). CONCLUSIONS: The Pediatric Asthma Diary daytime symptom scale and day without asthma are acceptable measures for use in asthma intervention studies of children aged 6-14 years. (+info)
(6/883) Changes at the high end of risk in cigarette smoking among US high school seniors, 1976-1995.
OBJECTIVES: This study identified high school seniors at low, moderate and high risk for cigarette use to examine changes in the prevalence of daily smoking within risk groups from 1976 to 1995. METHODS: Data were taken from the Monitoring the Future Projects national surveys of high school seniors. Risk classification was based on grade point average, truancy, nights out per week, and religious commitment. Logistic regression models were used to estimate trends for all seniors and separately for White (n = 244,221), African American (n = 41,005), and Hispanic (n = 18,457) made and female subgroups. RESULTS: Risk group distribution (low = 45%, moderate = 30%, high = 25%) changed little over time. Between 1976 and 1990, greater absolute declines in smoking occurred among high-risk students (17 percentage points) than among low-risk students (6 percentage points). Particularly large declines occurred among high-risk African Americans and Hispanics. Smoking increased in all risk groups in the 1990s. CONCLUSIONS: Among high school seniors, a large part of the overall change in smoking occurred among high-risk youth. Policies and programs to reduce smoking among youth must have broad appeal, especially to those at the higher end of the risk spectrum. (+info)
(7/883) Measurement of fatigue in industries.
Fatigue of workers is a complex phenomenon resulting from various factors in technically innovated modern industries, and it appears as a feeling of exhaustion, lowering of physiological functions, breakdown of autonomic nervous balance, and decrease in work efficiency. On the other hand industrial fatigue is caused by excessive workload, remarkable alteration in working posture and diurnal and nocturnal rhythms in daily life. Working modes in modern industries have changed from work with the whole body into that with the hands, arms, legs and/or eyes which are parts of the body, and from physical work to mental work. Visual display terminal (VDT) work is one of the most characteristic jobs in the various kinds of workplaces. A large number of fatigue tests have already been adopted, but it is still hard to draw a generalized conclusion as to the method of selecting the most appropriate test battery for a given work load. As apparatus for fatigue measurement of VDT work we have developed VRT (Visual Reaction Test) and the Portable Fatigue Meter. Furthermore, we have presented immune parameters of peripheral blood and splenic T cells for physical fatigue. (+info)
(8/883) Effects of mailed advice on stress reduction among employees in Japan: a randomized controlled trial.
We conducted a randomized controlled trial (RCT) to examine the effects of mailed advice on reducing psychological distress, blood pressure, serum lipids, and sick leave of workers employed in a manufacturing plant in Japan. Those who indicated higher psychological distress (defined as having GHQ scores of three or greater) in the baseline questionnaire survey (n = 226) were randomly assigned to an intervention group or a control group. Individualized letters were sent to the subjects of the intervention group, informing them of their stress levels and recommending an improvement in daily habits and other behaviors to reduce stress. Eighty-one and 77 subjects in the intervention and control groups, respectively, responded to the one-year follow-up survey. No significant intervention effect was observed for the GHQ scores, blood pressure, serum lipids, or sick leave (p > 0.05). The intervention effect was marginally significant for changes in regular breakfasts and daily alcohol consumption (p = 0.09). The intervention effect was marginally significant for the GHQ scores among those who initially did not eat breakfast regularly (p = 0.06). The study suggests that only sending mailed advice is not an effective measure for worksite stress reduction. Mailed advice which focuses on a particular subgroup (e.g., those who do not eat breakfast regularly) may be more effective. (+info)