Acquisition and carriage of meningococci in marine commando recruits.
Meningococcal acquisition is a prerequisite for invasive disease. Three hundred and eleven male marine commando recruits were studied throughout 29 weeks of basic training to identify factors influencing meningococcal carriage and acquisition including troop number, season, smoking, respiratory infection, antibiotic usage and nasopharyngeal bacterial interference flora. A high carriage rate on entry to training (118/311, 37.9%) and subsequent sustained high rates of meningococcal acquisition were found. Of the potential factors examined, only active and passive smoking were found to be associated significantly with meningococcal carriage on entry. The association between active smoking and meningococcal carriage was dose-dependent, with odds ratios (OR) of 2.2 (95% CIs 1.0-4.8) and 7.2 (95% CIs 2.3-22.9) for light and heavy smokers respectively. Passive smoking predisposed independently to carriage (OR 1.8, 95% CIs 1.1-3.0). Active and passive smoking combined to give an attributable risk for meningococcal carriage of 33%. In contrast, despite a high and sustained rate of meningococcal acquisition in the study population, none of the risk factors investigated, including active smoking, was associated significantly with meningococcal acquisition. No cases of meningococcal disease occurred during the 16-month study period. Therefore smoking may increase the duration of meningococcal carriage rather than the rate of acquisition, consistent with the increased risk of meningococcal disease from passive as opposed to active smoking. Public health measures that reduce the prevalence of smoking should reduce the risk of meningococcal disease. (+info)
The Seamen's Hospital Society: a progenitor of the tropical institutions.
1999 marks the centenary of the two major British Schools of Tropical Medicine, founded in London and Liverpool, respectively. The origin(s) of the former clearly lies in the Seamen's Hospital Society, which dates from 1821. It seems likely that the foundation of this school (with Government support) also acted as a catalyst for the school at Liverpool, which in fact opened its doors a few months before that in London. (+info)
Changes in physical characteristics and performance of elite sailors following introduction of a sport science programme prior to the 1996 olympic games.
The objective of this study was to examine changes in sailors' physical characteristics during three different time periods immediately before the 1996 New Zealand Olympic trials, as a result of a newly introduced sport science programme. Twenty five (19 male and 6 female) Olympic development squad members volunteered as subjects and completed fitness tests at different times between April 1995 and March 1996 after being administered with individualised physical training programmes. Statistically significant improvements were observed in body weight, sum of skinfolds, flexibility (assessed using a sit-reach test), aerobic endurance (assessed using a maximal effort 2500 m rowing test) and strength (assessed as the maximum number of push-ups, pull-ups, and sit-ups that could be completed in 2 minutes) over the three time periods. Thus, physical training was effective in improving many aspects of sailors' fitness, especially early in the sailing season as a result of pre-season training. Physical performance correlated poorly with both light and heavy wind racing performance. The results suggest that individually tailored training programmes will increase sailing specific fitness. However, it is impossible to know what proportions of racing performance can be attributed to physical fitness, skill, talent, and technology, therefore the effect of physical training on racing performance is difficult to determine. (+info)
David Samwell (1751-98): surgeon on the Discovery.
David Samwell, born in North Wales, was surgeon on the Discovery during the third and last voyage of Captain James Cook. Samwell wrote a biography of Cook and was a distinguished poet. He also served on several more voyages, retiring from the sea aged 45. (+info)
Coccidioidomycosis outbreak among United States Navy SEALs training in a Coccidioides immitis-endemic area--Coalinga, California.
An outbreak of coccidioidomycosis among 22 Navy SEALs occurred during training exercises in Coalinga, California. Ten (45%) of the 22 men had serologic evidence of acute coccidioidomycosis, the highest attack rate ever reported for a military unit. All case patients were symptomatic, and 50% had abnormal chest radiographs. There were no cases of dissemination and no deaths to date. Coccidioidomycosis continues to be a threat to military members and civilians who reside or train in areas where Coccidioides immitis, the causative agent, is endemic. (+info)
Cancer at sea: a case-control study among male Finnish seafarers.
AIMS: To study the possible work related reasons for the increased incidence of many cancers among seafarers. METHODS: A case-control study, nested in a cohort of all male seafarers (n = 30 940) who, according to the files of the Seamen's Pension Fund, had worked on board Finnish ships for any time during the period 1960-80. Cases of cancer of the lung, nervous system, kidney, and pancreas, leukaemia, lymphoma, and all cases histologically defined as mesotheliomas were identified from the Finnish Cancer Registry in 1967-92. The preceding numbers of years at sea in various occupational categories were collected according to the type of ship (dry cargo ship, tanker, passenger vessel, icebreaker, other vessel). RESULTS: The incidence for lung cancer among engine crew increased with the increase in employment time, the odds ratio (OR) after three years being 1.68 (95% CI 1.17 to 2.41). The OR of lung cancer for deck officers was 0.42 (95% CI 0.29 to 0.61). Deck personnel on icebreakers had a significantly increased risk of lung cancer > or =20 years after first employment (OR 3.41, 95% CI 1.23 to 9.49). The OR for mesothelioma among engine crew with a latency of 20 years was 9.75 (95% CI 1.88 to 50.6). The OR for renal cancer among deck officers after three years employment was 2.15 (95% CI 1.14 to 4.08), but there was no increase by employment time or by latency. A rise of OR for lymphoma was detected among deck personnel on tankers, if the employment had lasted over three years (OR 2.78, 95% CI 0.98 to 7.92). The risk pattern for leukaemia was similar to that of lymphoma, the OR among deck personnel on tankers varying from 2.26 (95% CI 1.01 to 5.06) to 6.86 (95% CI 1.62 to 28.8) depending on the length of employment. CONCLUSIONS: Results indicate that occupational exposures of deck crews on tankers add to their risk of renal cancer, leukaemia, and possibly lymphoma. Engine crews have an asbestos related risk of mesothelioma, and the engine room conditions also seem to increase risk of lung cancer. (+info)
Antibiotic susceptibility of Neisseria gonorrhoeae isolated in the Western Pacific in 1971.
Isolates of Neisseria gonorrhoeae from 256 patients contracting acute gonococcal urethritis, primarily in the Republic of the Phillipine Islands, in 1971, were tested for the minimum inhibitory concentrations of five antibodies. The median is advocated as a measurement for comparison of ranges of MIC values; the median MIC of penicillin for 258 isolates was 0-23 mug/ml. A positive correlation coefficient was observed for the susceptibility of isolates to penicillin, spectinomycin, cephaloridine, and tetracycline. (+info)
Tuberculosis infection among young adults enlisting in the United States Navy.
BACKGROUND: Tuberculosis (TB) is a re-emerging infectious disease threat worldwide. To protect the health and readiness of US military personnel, policies exist to screen for and treat latent TB infection at the time of service entrance. RESULTS: of this screening programme have not been recently described. METHODS: Multivariate regression techniques were used to evaluate demographic and medical data associated with TB infection among all young adults entering US Navy enlisted service between 1 October 1997 and 30 September 1998. Results A total of 44,128 adults (ages 17-35, 81% male) were screened for TB during this 12-month period. The prevalence of latent TB infection was 3.5%. Place of birth was very strongly associated with TB infection, with foreign-born recruits eight times more likely to have a reactive tuberculin skin test or history of infection. Those who reported their race as 'Asian/Pacific Island' had 3.8 times the odds of having evidence of TB infection compared with 'Caucasian' recruits, even after adjusting for place of birth. CONCLUSIONS: The prevalence of TB infection among Navy recruits was last reported as 2.5% nearly 10 years ago. The apparent increase to 3.5% in this large cohort is likely due to a concurrent increase in the number of foreign-born recruits, and it serves to underscore the importance of comprehensive screening and treatment of latent TB infections in this population. (+info)