The Scholarly Project (SP) Course represents a four-year mentored research project for each student. The SP prepares students for lifelong learning and critical thinking. Through the SP, students develop advanced inquiry and problem-solving skills to support clinical practice and future research endeavors throughout their careers. The formal curriculum is embedded in this course, is referred to as the SP Learning Community (SPLC) in which all students participate. The SPLC curriculum is most intense in the first-year during which the students are exposed to issues that relate to information literacy, research methodology, ethical behavior in research, statistics and research proposal and grant writing. In addition, the students receive assistance in how to choose areas they wish to investigate, design a research hypothesis and find a mentor. By the end of the second semester of the first year each student is expected to have his/her project designed and approved and to have selected a mentor who will guide and oversee the progress of the project. Both the SPLC and the independent scholarly activity are monitored by a variety of periodic assessments to assure appropriate guidance and advancement.


More information is found here: http://medicine.arizona.edu/education/phoenix-track/scholarly-project

Recent Submissions

  • Understanding Severe Acute Malnutrition in Children Globally: A Systematic Review

    Kellerhals, Sarah; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Caputo, Grace MD, MPH (The University of Arizona., 2017-06-19)
    Severe acute malnutrition (SAM) affects 13 million children under the age of 5 worldwide, and contributes to 1‐2 million preventable deaths each year. Malnutrition is a significant factor in approximately one third of the nearly 8 million deaths in children who are under 5 years of age worldwide. There have been many revolutions in treatment of SAM over time; however, the exact etiology of this preventable condition is not well understood. This review serves to identify the most common risk factors for the development of SAM in children and to identify the most effective treatment for the disease. There are many factors that contribute to developing and surviving SAM as a child, and this systematic review serves to highlight the most common variables that lead to this cause of mortality. An exhaustive review of PubMed was conducted to complete this review. The literature review demonstrates that the most common risk factor for the development of SAM is low maternal literacy.
  • Identifying Barriers to Enrollment of Diverse Populations in Arizona Following the Initial Open Enrollment Period of the Affordable Care Act

    Moseley, Joseph; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; VanPelt, Kim MPA (The University of Arizona., 2017-06-06)
    While it is known that over 266,000 Arizonans enrolled in health coverage through the federal Marketplace and Medicaid from October 2013 through May 2014, little analysis has been performed to examine whether enrollment by diverse racial and ethnic groups sufficiently reduced disparities in coverage. We obtained publicly available data from the Census Bureau comparing rates of uninsured by race/ethnicity from 2013 to 2014 in Arizona from the American Community Survey. The uninsured rate in Arizona for the total civilian no institutionalized population dropped from 17% in 2013 to 13.6% in 2014. The uninsured rate in Arizona for whites declined from 15.7% to 12.2%, for African Americans declined from 17.4% to 11.1%, for American Indian/Alaskan Natives declined from 26.9% to 24.1%, for Asian Americans declined from 15.1% to 11.0% and for Hispanic/Latino declined from 27.5% to 22.2%. We conducted interviews with nine community organizations in order to identify barriers that must be addressed moving forward to lessen insurance coverage disparities among various minority groups. Technological literacy and functionality, lack of funding, lack of personnel, physical vastness of many populations, language, and cultural differences were commonly identified as barriers to enrollment. Mistrust of government and confusion regarding the specific provisions within the ACA pertaining to Native individuals were also cited.
  • The Effect of Two Attending Surgeons on Patients with Large Curve Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis Undergoing Posterior Spinal Fusion

    Bosch, Liam Christian; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Shrader, Wade MD (The University of Arizona., 2017-06-01)
    Surgical correction of Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis (AIS) carries a substantial risk of complication. The literature supports improved perioperative outcomes through the two surgeon strategy in other complex orthopedic procedures. Does the presence of 2 versus 1 attending surgeons affect the perioperative morbidity of posterior spinal fusion (PSF) in patients with AIS curves greater than 70°? We reviewed the database from a large regional children’s hospital of all patients with AIS curves greater than 70° who underwent PSF from 2009‐2014 and divided the cohort into single versus 2‐surgeon groups (28 vs. 19 cases, respectively). We analyzed cases for length of surgery, estimated blood loss, and length of stay. The groups were identical when comparing age, gender, spinal levels fused, and average ASA score. However, the average Cobb angle in the single surgeon group was significantly less than in the 2 surgeon group at 78.4 vs 84.0 degrees, respectively (p=0.049). Mean operative time for single versus 2 surgeons was 238 (SD 48) vs 212 (SD 46) minutes (p=0.078). Mean percent estimated blood loss was 26% (SD 14.1) for single surgeon vs 31% (SD 14.9) for 2 surgeons (p=0.236), and mean estimated blood loss for single surgeon vs 2 surgeons was 830ml (SD 361) vs 1045ml (SD 346) (p=0.052). Mean length of stay was significantly decreased in the 2 surgeon group at 5.16 days (SD 1.7) versus the single surgeon group at 6.82 days (SD 6.82) (p=0.002). The use of 2 surgeons in AIS deformity correction at an experienced regional children’s hospital did not improve clinical outcomes. The average length of stay was reduced in the two‐surgeon group, but there was no significant impact on blood loss or operative time. However, this study does not rule out the potential for positive impact with a two‐surgeon strategy, and given previous supportive data in the literature, this approach should further evaluated to determine its effect on improving perioperative outcomes.
  • Hospital Admissions After Standard Versus Positive Pressure Nebulization in Patients with Bronchiolitis

    Kim, Jeffrey; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Chidi, Arati DO (The University of Arizona., 2017-05-26)
    In the United States, bronchiolitis has consistently been the most common diagnosis leading to hospitalization in infants under one year of age, representing over 90,000 cases a year and a significant financial burden on the healthcare system. A condition with such widespread incidence should have an established algorithm for treatment of respiratory symptoms, but studies on the efficacy of certain therapies have been inconclusive. Some reports suggest that the use of positive pressure nebulization may be of benefit in treating bronchiolitis, but it has not yet been studied systematically. 1) To determine whether positive pressure nebulization (PPN) is more effective than standard nebulization (SN) in reducing admission rate in infants with bronchiolitis 2) To determine whether the use of positive pressure nebulization causes a change in Bronchiolitis Score, Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) admission rate, length of stay (LOS), and unscheduled returns to the pediatric emergency department (PED). The project is a retrospective study conducted at a single‐center tertiary care children's hospital. Participants included in the study were infants 2‐24 months of age with moderate to severe bronchiolitis, who were evaluated by trained respiratory therapists using an objective scoring tool and treatment algorithm that included suctioning, albuterol, and racemic epinephrine. Infants received the above nebulization therapies by either a standard or a positive pressure nebulization delivery device. The two treatment groups were compared to see if one approach was superior as measured by outcomes such as hospital and PICU admission rate, length of stay, and returns to the emergency department. Initial survey of the 2012‐2013 winter season at Phoenix Children's Hospital yielded 2,095 patients who were diagnosed with bronchiolitis. As the majority of patients were excluded due to age, comorbidities, or poor documentation of treatment, our study examined 19 patients who received positive pressure nebulization, which were matched in a 1:3 ratio (PPN:SN), for a total of 57 patients who received standard nebulization. In measuring the primary markers of outcome, we found that 12 of the 19 PPN patients (63%) were admitted to the regular pediatric ward, and 4 of the 19 (21%) were admitted to the PICU. 35 of the 57 SN patients (63%) were admitted to the regular pediatric ward, and 5 of the 57 (8%) were admitted to the PICU. Statistical analysis showed that the estimated minimum 'n' required in each treatment group was 252 patients, but our study was only able to obtain a sample size of 19 patients in the PPN group, which was not enough for statistical significance. An association between hospital admission rate with positive pressure nebulization or standard nebulization was not able to be determined.
  • Study of an Early Wellness Program in Parkinson ’s Disease: Impact On Quality Of Life And Early Intervention Guidance

    Page, Brent Michael; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Shill, Holly MD (The University of Arizona., 2017-05-26)
    Previous studies have shown that Parkinson’s disease (PD) patients are at an increased risk for a variety of complications impacting health related quality of life (HRQoL). Additionally, these various complications often lead to increased healthcare utilization. Wellness intervention in PD has shown to be effective in improving HRQoL and objective measures of disease burden such as motor functioning. What has not been demonstrated to date is whether patients who are given the opportunity to participate in regularly administered classes in these modalities will continue to attend and whether benefits will continue to be realized outside the strict confines of a controlled trial. This study examined whether intervening early in PD with a comprehensive Wellness Program is feasible and promotes lasting habits that will continue to provide sustained benefit. It was hypothesized that intervening early in PD with an intensive program involving structured exercise, socialization and PD specific education would serve to maintain or improve subject’s quality of life while decreasing healthcare utilization. Twenty‐one consenting ambulatory adult subjects diagnosed with PD within the last five years completed various screenings at baseline and following a required 6‐month Wellness Program intervention. Subjects were assessed at 12 and 18 months if they continued to participate. Patient demographics, disease specific quality of life, objective mobility, healthcare utilization and falls were assessed. Data were collected at Banner Sun Health Research Institute, located in Sun City, Arizona. All p‐values were 2‐tailed and P<0.05 was considered statistically significant. All data analyses were conducted using STATA‐14. Twenty of twenty‐one subjects completed the required 6‐month intervention. Continued participation was 70% at 12 months and 60% at 18 months. Overall HRQoL was stable at 18 months. Significant improvement was seen in patient reported mobility and emotion sub‐areas at 12 months. Communication specific HRQoL was significantly worsened at 12 months. Subjects demonstrated a stable level of physical activity while fatigue was significantly decreased. All objective measures were significantly improved from baseline. Healthcare utilization was decreased by 18 months. A total of 5 falls were reported by 3 subjects during the 6‐month interventional period. This pilot study demonstrates that comprehensive wellness intervention in early PD is feasible, effective, safe and valuable in establishing long‐term beneficial habits while potentially reducing healthcare utilization. The significant long‐term subject participation observed in this study establishes that wellness intervention may be practical for large scale implementation. The results also highlight the importance of addressing communication specific symptoms early in the course of the disease. Ultimately, this study will aid the design and implementation of future PD wellness interventions.
  • Targeting the Hippo Signaling Pathway in Atypical Teratoid Rhabdoid Tumor

    Norris, Gregory; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Bhardwaj, Ratan MD, PhD (The University of Arizona., 2017-05-26)
    Atypical teratoid rhabdoid tumor (ATRT) is a highly malignant pediatric central nervous system tumor. The prognosis is often poor, with a 2‐year survival rate estimated at 15%. This dismal prognosis highlights the need to develop new treatment modalities for this devastating pediatric tumor. Recently, a tumor suppressing signaling pathway known as Hippo has emerged as a possible cancer treatment target. The Hippo signaling pathway is involved in organ growth and maintenance, and is dysregulated in many diverse cancers. We used quantitative real‐time PCR to evaluate the mRNA expression profile of Hippo pathway genes. We then used determined the protein expression of various Hippo components using Western blots. The results of this study suggest that Hippo plays a definite role in atypical teratoid rhabdoid tumor.
  • Identifying Genetic Pleiotropy through a Literature-wide Association Study (LitWAS) and a Phenotype Association Study (PheWAS) in the Age-related Eye Disease Study 2 (AREDS2)

    Simmons, Michael; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Lu, Zhiyong PhD (The University of Arizona., 2017-05-26)
    Genetic association studies simplify genotype‐phenotype relationship investigation by considering only the presence of a given polymorphism and the presence or absence of a given downstream phenotype. Although such associations do not indicate causation, collections of phenotypes sharing association with a single genetic polymorphism may provide valuable mechanistic insights. In this thesis we explore such genetic pleiotropy with Deep Phenotype Association Studies (DeePAS) using data from the Age‐Related Eye Study 2 (AREDS2). We also employ a novel text mining approach to extract pleiotropic associations from the published literature as a hypothesis generation mechanism. Is it possible to identify pleiotropic genetic associations across multiple published abstracts and validate these in data from AREDS2? Data from the AREDS2 trial includes 123 phenotypes including AMD features, other ocular conditions, cognitive function and cardiovascular, neurological, gastrointestinal and endocrine disease. A previously validated relationship extraction algorithm was used to isolate descriptions of genetic associations with these phenotypes in MEDLINE abstracts. Results were filtered to exclude negated findings and normalize variant mentions. Genotype data was available for 1826 AREDS2 participants. A DeePAS was performed by evaluating the association between selected SNPs and all available phenotypes. Associations that remained significant after Bonferroni‐correction were replicated in AREDS. LitWAS analysis identified 9372 SNPs with literature support for at least two distinct phenotypes, with an average of 3.1 phenotypes/SNP. PheWAS analyses revealed that two variants of the ARMS2‐HTRA1 locus at 10q26, rs10490924 and rs3750846, were significantly associated with sub‐retinal hemorrhage in AMD (rs3750846 OR 1.79 (1.41‐2.27), p=1.17*10‐7). This associated remained significant even in populations of participants with neovascular AMD. Furthermore, odds ratios for the development of sub‐retinal hemorrhage in the presence of the rs3750846 SNP were similar between incident and prevalent AREDS2 sub‐populations (OR: 1.94 vs 1.75). This association was also replicated in data from the AREDS trial. No literature‐defined pleiotropic associations tested remained significant after multiple‐testing correction. The rs3750846 variant of the ARMS2‐HTRA1 locus is associated with sub‐retinal hemorrhage. Automatic literature mining, when paired with clinical data, is a promising method for exploring genotype‐phenotype relationships.
  • The Vaginal and Gastrointestinal Microbiomes in Gynecologic Cancers: A Review of Applications in Etiology, Symptoms and Treatment

    Goulder, Alison; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Chase, Dana MD (The University of Arizona., 2017-05-26)
    The human microbiome is the collection of microorganisms in the body that exist in a mutualistic relationship with the host. Recent studies indicate that perturbations in the microbiome may be implicated in a number of diseases, including cancer. More specifically, changes in the gut and vaginal microbiomes may be associated with a variety of gynecologic cancers, including cervical cancer, uterine cancer, and ovarian cancer. Current research and gaps in knowledge regarding the association between the gut and vaginal microbiomes and the development, progression, and treatment of gynecologic cancers are reviewed here. In addition, the potential use of probiotics to manage symptoms of these gynecologic cancers is discussed. A better understanding of how the microbiome composition is altered at these sites and its interaction with the host may aid in prevention, optimization of current therapies, development of new therapeutic agents and/or dosing regimens, and possibly limit the side effects associated with cancer treatment.
  • Retrospective Analysis of Injuries Sustained In Vehicle Front‐ and Back‐Overs in a Level I Pediatric Trauma Center

    Bendall, William Bryson; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; van Leeuwen, Kathleen MD (The University of Arizona., 2017-05-26)
    Motor vehicle accidents involving pedestrians are some of the most common and lethal forms of injury for children in the United States. Among younger children, a common mechanism of action for severe trauma is when a vehicle runs over the child in a forward or backward motion at low speed resulting in a blunt crush injury. This typically occurs in non‐traffic settings including driveways, sidewalks, and roadways. Such incidents have been referred to in many different ways in the literature but for the purposes of this paper will be referred to as low speed vehicle run‐overs. This is a retrospective chart review carried out at Phoenix Children’s Hospital in affiliation with the University of Arizona College of Medicine‐Phoenix that categorizes and examines the injuries sustained by patients involved in low speed vehicle runovers occurring between December 2007 and August 2013. Fifty‐five pediatric patients were included with a median age of 24 months and 6 of these patients were fatally injured. Internal injuries were common overall and significantly more common in children ≤24months. Over half of the cohort sustained fractures, with a 24% incidence of skull fractures. All fatalities were the result of traumatic brain injury. Twenty percent of victims required operative intervention. It was concluded that the severity of these types of incidents varies from minimal to life threatening and best care requires close and thorough evaluation by the trauma and emergency department teams.
  • Is Prehospital Emergency Telemedicine Implementation Feasible In Non‐Traditional EMS Settings: A Systematic Literature Review

    Guevorkian, Mark; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Manriquez, Maria MD; Stapczynski, Steve MD (The University of Arizona., 2017-05-25)
    The rate of technology expansion is rapidly covering even the most remote parts of the globe and in the lowest resource settings. With globalization however, low and middle income areas are facing emerging health issues such as injuries and chronic medical conditions. With these illnesses, there are inevitable demands on emergency services. It has been thought that technology be utilized to augment emergency medical care in such settings where formal Emergency Medical Services. To aggregate and analyze the existing literature on the topic a systematic literature review was conducted. This study analyzed the existing literature on prehospital emergency care in settings in which no formal EMS services were utilized. Four databases were searched with inclusion and exclusion criteria, yielding 1782 results. The initial screening excluded all but 21 articles. Of the 21 articles in full review, 15 were included in the final review. Studies included in the final review were grouped into those reporting outcomes from five categories: Feasibility, Quality of Care, Response Time, Patient Outcomes, and Cost Effectiveness. Only one study was identified to be of high quality. There was a lack of studies with adequate statistical analysis to conduct statistical aggregation. Most studies however reported prehospital telemedicine in settings without EMS to be feasible, provide quality care, are be cost effective. However, the lack of statistical analysis makes it difficult to make conclusions. Also, several studies did show response time of a trained basic life support volunteer to be faster than EMS in many of the settings. But no positive health outcomes were observed in patients treated with projects utilizing technology in the prehospital setting. The prehospital emergency medicine setting is a young field of study that may have significant hurdles in application. The studies conducted have shown promise in the use of technology in prehospital settings without formal EMS services, but are not robust enough to make strong conclusions or recommendations that could be put into practice. Thus, more robust, statistically oriented research is imperative in the field so that we can fully explore the potential of technology in the prehospital setting, especially in low resource and rural settings without formal EMS services. With more robust studies, we can hope to integrate new technologies into practice and better serve the populations without adequate EMS coverage to provide more timely emergency care.
  • Assessment of Scholarly Project Requirements at U.S. Allopathic Medical Schools

    Wypiszynski, Sarah; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; McEchron, Matthew PhD (The University of Arizona., 2017-05-25)
    Over 100 years after the Flexner Report first revolutionized medical education, medical schools across the United States are rethinking the role of scholarly research in their curricula. Scholarly research helps fulfill a number of essential elements of the medical school curriculum. The Scholarly Project (SP) engenders self‐directed independent learning, critical thinking skills, writing skills, life‐long learning, and many other objectives. The SP also allows students to assess evidence and the credibility of sources. According to a 2010 study, the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) Curriculum Directory listed 84 medical schools with required research and 9 schools with a required thesis. This research requirement can take on many forms, some of which have been outlined for specific medical schools. Since then, more schools have embraced SP’s in their curricula, and the SP requirements and objectives have evolved dramatically at many U.S. medical schools. This project aims to (1) identify which U.S. allopathic medical schools have required and elective SP’s, (2) determine the components of these SP’s with respect to the duration and placement within the four‐year curriculum, the types of projects that qualify as SPs, the capstone requirement for the finished SP product, the curricular elements, and the objectives of the SP, and (3) determine how many schools have a required, four‐year longitudinal, hypothesis‐driven SP that culminate in a manuscript or thesis. The 136 allopathic medical schools on the AAMC Application Service website as of September 4, 2014 were included in this research. The individual website of each school was queried to attempt to determine the presence and characteristics of a formal SP within the curriculum. Each school was then contacted with the information that was found from the initial query in order to verify and/or elaborate on the preliminary results. Each SP was analyzed to determine (1) whether it was required or optional, (2) its duration and placement within the 4‐year curriculum, (3) the capstone requirement, (4) whether the research was required to be hypothesis‐driven, (5) the topic areas available for students, (6) whether there was formal curriculum in scholarly pursuit within the general medical curriculum, and (7) what the program objectives were. A total of 136 medical schools were surveyed in this study. Our analysis revealed that 78 of these schools include some structured SP in their curricula. Of these, 48 SPs are required, and 30 are optional. The majority of these SPs (36) require less than 1 year for completion. A total of 48 of the 78 medical schools had a manuscript or thesis requirement for the final capstone. Of the 48 schools with a required SP, 25 required the research to be hypothesis driven. A total of 43 of the 78 schools included required scholarship/research curricula as part of the overall medical education curriculum. The objectives of the programs are described in detail in this study. This study identified four medical schools with a required, 4‐year longitudinal, hypothesis‐driven SP that culminates with production of a manuscript or thesis. The four allopathic medical schools with a required, 4‐year longitudinal, hypothesisdriven SP that culminates in a manuscript/thesis are as follows: the Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University, the University of Arizona College of Medicine‐ Phoenix, the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine and Research Institute, and Yale University. The details of each program are explored in the text.
  • Computed Tomography Perfusion Imaging In Acute Ischemic Stroke: Do The Benefits Outweigh The Costs?

    Willows, Brooke; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Karis, John MD (The University of Arizona., 2017-05-25)
    Current stroke imaging protocol at Barrow Neurological Institute calls for a noncontrast computed tomography (NCCT), a computed tomography angiography (CTA), and a computed tomography perfusion (CTP) at the time of presentation to the emergency department (ED), and follow up imaging includes magnetic resonance diffusion weighted imaging (MR‐DWI). This information is used to determine the appropriateness and safety of tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) administration. Previous studies have shown the risk for post‐tPA hemorrhagic conversion rises significantly as the size of the infarct core increases. Thus, it is of great importance to have an accurate method of measuring core infarct size in patients presenting with acute ischemic stroke. The purpose of our study is to determine if CTP correctly identifies the infarct core and if post‐tPA hemorrhagic conversion is related to the size of the infarct core and/or the accuracy of CTP in identifying the infarct core. The ultimate goal is to improve patient outcomes by decreasing the morbidity and mortality associated with tPA administration. This study is a retrospective chart review of all patients who presented to the ED during a one year period with signs and symptoms of acute ischemic stroke who then subsequently received tPA. Imaging was also reviewed, including the NCCT, CTA, CTP, and MRDWI for each patient. In this study, MR‐DWI is used as the gold standard for determining the presence or absence of an infarct core. CTP and MR‐DWI are in agreement of the presence of an infarct core in 7 patients, or 10 percent of the time. Similarly, CTP and MR‐DWI are in agreement of the absence of an infarct core in 31 patients, or 44 percent of the time. In the other 32 patients, CTP and MR‐DWI are in disagreement. The percent correlation between CTP and MR‐DWI was found to be 24 percent with a p‐value < 0.05. As for post‐tPA hemorrhagic conversion, 12 percent of patients had hemorrhagic conversion, and when the hemorrhage rate was compared to the size of the infarct core, the odds of post‐tPA hemorrhagic conversion were 56 times higher in the group of patients with infarct cores larger than one‐third of a vascular territory than in patients with smaller infarct cores with a p‐value < 0.001. Although no significant correlation was found between the accuracy of CTP data and the rate of post‐tPA hemorrhagic conversion, patients with concordant CTP and MR data had a 46% lower likelihood of post‐tPA hemorrhagic conversion than did patients with contradictory CTP and MR‐DWI data. Conclusion: Because patients with infarct cores larger than one‐third of a vascular territory are 56 times more likely to hemorrhage than patients with smaller infarct cores and CTP is less accurate than MR‐DWI in identifying the infarct core in patients presenting with acute ischemic stroke, CTP studies should not be part of the acute stroke imaging protocol. Another imaging modality, such as MR‐DWI, may be preferential in the setting of acute ischemic stroke to identify the infarct core.
  • A Systematic Review of Hyaluronidase‐Assisted Subcutaneous Fluid Administration in Pediatrics and Geriatrics and Its Potential Application in Low Resource Settings

    Wilhelm, Kelsey; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Barcellona, Dawn MD (The University of Arizona., 2017-05-25)
    The role of enzyme‐assisted subcutaneous fluid administration (EASFA) in treating mild to moderate dehydration in pediatrics, geriatrics, and palliative care has been studied in developed countries. However, it has historically been underutilized due to widely available health care and alternative treatments, namely peripheral intravenous (IV) fluid administration. Fluid infusions in the subcutaneous tissue have a low risk of infection, are easy to administer, and have wide potential use. The use of EASFA in low resource settings to treat those with difficult IV access or where skilled healthcare workers are not as readily available could prove to be a live saving measure in many situations, including the care of patients in remote areas of the world, mass casualty events, or other disasters. Our objective was to determine if EASFA is a valid and appropriate technique to utilize in pediatric and elderly patients, and evaluate if it could be a safe and efficient way to provide fluid resuscitation in low resource settings. For this systematic review MEDLINE and Cochrane Library were searched from January 1950 to December 2015 to recover all available literature relevant to this topic. Studies that met the inclusion criteria were analyzed using Cohen’s D. This was calculated using the mean difference between intervention and control divided by the pooled standard deviation. For dichotomous outcome of the placement success rate the odds ratios were calculated with 95% confidence intervals. In reviewing 7 articles using Cohen’s D to compare mean differences to determine effect size, we found that catheter placement success rates and infusion rates were similar between EASFA and peripheral intravenous fluid administration. Additionally, it was found that the odds of correct initial needle placement was 7.19 times higher in EASFA versus intravenous administration. EASFA is a comparable alternative to intravenous fluid administration when delivering fluids to pediatric and elderly patients with mild to moderate dehydration. While infusion rates and total volume of fluids administered were similar, the high rate of success with placement of the subcutaneous catheter proves it to be more useful in some situations. Venous cannulation is difficult, even for a trained healthcare provider, and the ease of placement of subcutaneous catheters makes training lay people to administer subcutaneous fluids a possibility. Additionally, this type of fluid administration may lead to less psychological trauma to a child from multiple needle sticks, while still achieving a similar outcome of effective volume replacement. Based on the results of this study, further research is needed to evaluate the effectiveness of utilizing EASFA in low resource settings.
  • Identification of Apnea Events Using a Chest‐Worn Physical Activity Monitor

    Salazar, Eduardo; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Buman, Matthew PhD (The University of Arizona., 2017-05-25)
    Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a condition characterized by upper airway obstruction during sleep causing intermittent hypoxia and nighttime awakening. It is a common condition in the United States that is often undiagnosed. It is a significant risk factor for decreased daytime productivity, quality of life, cardiovascular disease, and death. The current gold standard for diagnosis of OSA is laboratory‐based polysomnography (PSG). While PSG is necessary for the diagnosis and monitoring of OSA, many patients have limited access to PSG due to wait times at PSG laboratories or economic or geographic limitations. Portable sleep monitoring has been studied as a possible solution for patients who do not have access to timely PSG. This study aimed to use the Zephyr BioHarness 3, a chest‐worn physical activity monitor that records movement and physiologic data in real‐time, to detect apnea events in patients with suspected OSA undergoing single‐night laboratory PSG. Twenty patients underwent single‐night laboratory‐based PSG while simultaneously wearing the Zephyr BioHarness 3. The Zephyr BioHarness 3 data was analyzed using three methods. First, apnea events were identified in 10‐second windows of Zephyr data via support vector machine, logistic regression, and neural network (sensitivity = 76.0 ± 0.3%, specificity = 62.7 ± 0.2%, accuracy = 63.7 ± 0.1%). Second, apnea events were identified using the mean, median, and variance of the 10‐second windows (sensitivity = 72.3 ± 0.3%, specificity = 69.4 ± 0.1%), accuracy 69.6 ± 0.1%). Third, apnea events were identified using phase‐space transformation of the Zephyr BioHarness 3 data (sensitivity = 76.9 ± 0.3%, specificity = 77.9 ± 0.1 %, accuracy = 77.9 ± 0.1%). The Zephyr BioHarness shows initial promise as a possible OSA screening tool for patients suspected of OSA but who lack access to timely laboratory‐based PSG.
  • CT Findings of Pulmonary Hypertension

    Patel, Akash; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Connell, Mary MD (The University of Arizona., 2017-05-25)
    Primary pulmonary hypertension (PPH) has an extremely poor prognosis with a mean survival time of 2‐3 years from time of diagnosis. Hemodynamically, PPH is defined with a mPAP of ≥ 25 mm Hg. Currently, RHC is the gold standard for measuring the arterial pressures and diagnosing PPH; however, it is an incredibly invasive procedure. Our study will show whether CT angiography can be considered as a non‐invasive alternative for diagnosing PPH. Studies in the past have shown CT measurements of the MPAD and MPAD/AAD ratio having strong correlations with PPH. In addition to those measurements, we want to show if other CT parameters also have a correlation with PPH. Some of these novel measurements include the interventricular septal deviation and the Elizabeth Taylor sign. The interventricular septum is normally bowing to the right in a non‐pathological state. If it is straight or bowing to the left, this will indicate increased right ventricular pressures which would be indicative of PPH. Straight will indicate increased RV pressures, and bowing to the left will be considered markedly increased RV pressures. The Elizabeth Taylor sign is the ratio of the diameter of the segmental bronchi and its corresponding artery. We will hypothesize that the artery will be much larger than the bronchi in patients with PPH. Other measurements will include the left and right pulmonary arteries. This study is a retrospective review of subjects who underwent an otherwise unremarkable CT pulmonary artery angiogram. Subjects with pulmonary embolism or other acute pulmonary diseases are excluded. For each subject, the following CT findings are obtained: main pulmonary artery diameter (mPAD), ratio of mPAD to ascending aorta, right and left pulmonary artery diameters, ratio of segmental pulmonary artery to corresponding bronchus, and interventricular septal displacement. Straightening of the interventricular septum qualifies as increased right ventricular septal pressure and right‐to‐left bowing of the septum qualifies as a marked increase. Mean pulmonary artery pressure measured on any prior/subsequent RHC or echocardiogram within 3 months of the CT is recorded. Any past medical history of connective tissue disease is noted. Descriptive data are calculated and correlations are done to assess for presence and strength of associations among variables. Data from 484 subjects are collected. Incidence rate of pulmonary hypertension isv13% (n=63). 52% (n=33) of the subjects with pulmonary hypertension are female with an average age of 55 years. mPA diameter (p<0.001), mPA:AA ratio (p<0.001), right (p<0.001) and left pulmonary artery (p=0.004) diameters are predictors of pulmonary hypertension. sPA:B ratio (p=0.08) and interventricular septal displacement (p=0.96) are not predictive of pulmonary hypertension. This study supports an association of mPA diameter, mPA:AA ratio, right and left pulmonary artery diameters with pulmonary hypertension diagnosed by RHC or echocardiogram. Prospective research is warranted to confirm and establish threshold values for each variable. Currently, an invasive RHC remains the most accurate method of diagnosis. Correlating CT findings with pulmonary hypertension would allow clinicians to use CT as a noninvasive screening tool.
  • Comparing Different Forms of Childhood Maltreatment as Risk Factors for Adult Cardiovascular Disease and Depression

    Panchanathan, Amritha; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Caldwell, Jon G. DO (The University of Arizona., 2017-05-23)
    Research has shown an association between childhood maltreatment and risk factors for cardiovascular disease and depression. The purpose of this study is to examine the total and unique effects of various forms of childhood maltreatment on the development of risk factors for cardiovascular disease and depression in both women and men. Data for this study will be obtained from retrospective chart review and from an already established research database at a private healthcare facility specializing in the treatment of trauma and addiction. All information will pertain to participants’ admission to the healthcare facility and will include self‐report data on childhood maltreatment and symptoms of depression, as well as retrospective chart review data regarding physiological metrics of risk for cardiovascular disease (blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes). Results from 290 patients indicated that emotional abuse and emotional neglect were the leading predictors of negative outcomes with emotional neglect being a significant predictor of adult depression even after controlling for age, gender, and marital status. Younger participants and women reported higher levels of depression. However, the gender‐specific regressions showed that younger age and emotional neglect remained significant predictors of depression, with the percent variance explained by the model being greater among men compared to women. This greater effect size among men was driven by a stronger association between younger age and depression in men than in women. Childhood emotional abuse was associated with greater risk for coronary heart disease, even after controlling for gender and marital status. Gender‐specific analyses showed that, for men, childhood physical neglect emerged as a significant predictor of coronary heart disease risk after controlling for marital status. Contrary to predictions, among women, none of the five types of childhood maltreatment emerged as a significant predictor of coronary heart disease risk. Moreover, depression was inversely associated with risk for coronary heart disease. In other words, higher levels of depression were consistently associated with lower levels of coronary heart disease risk. This was attributed to the fact that younger people reported higher levels of depression, but younger age was also associated with lower levels of coronary heart disease risk. Furthermore, the results of this study can be used to develop screening tools, based on childhood maltreatment severity and type, for depression and cardiovascular disease. To what degree are specific types of childhood abuse and neglect (i.e., emotional, physical, or sexual) risk factors for depression and cardiovascular disease and how are these risks moderated by gender? Hypotheses: 1) It is expected that higher levels of childhood neglect and abuse (all forms taken together) will be related to higher levels of depressive symptoms and greater risk for cardiovascular disease. 2) Comparing five basic forms of neglect and abuse, it is anticipated that emotional abuse will have the strongest association with elevations in depression and cardiovascular risk. 3) It is hypothesized that the relation between childhood maltreatment and cardiovascular risk will be stronger in women compared to men.
  • Celiac Disease in the Hispanic Population at Maricopa Integrated Health System

    Massimo, Lauren; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Chuang, Keng‐Yu MD (The University of Arizona., 2017-05-23)
    Celiac disease (CD) is an autoimmune gastrointestinal disorder that has been well studied amongst non‐Hispanic white populations. Data specifically describing the disease in the U.S. Hispanic population is limited and available studies that do report prevalence and incidence within this population reveal discrepancies. The aim of this study is to estimate the incidence of CD and to define common presenting symptoms in Hispanics in Phoenix, AZ. Data was collected via a retrospective chart review from Maricopa Integrated Health System (MIHS), an organization caring for a patient population that is >50% Hispanic, between 2004‐2013. The study population is both adult and pediatric patients that had received the ICD‐9 code 579.0. The total number of non‐repeat patients seen at MIHS each year between 2004‐2013 was also determined and broken down by race for incidence calculations. During this 10‐year period, 29 total patients were diagnosed with CD at MIHS. The overall yearly incidence increased from 1 in 44,011 patients in 2004 to 1 in 27,948 in 2013. Of the 29 diagnosed, 52% were Caucasian, 34% Hispanic, 7% Asian and 7% African American. The yearly incidence in Hispanic patients also increased from 0 in 2004 to 1 in 58,302 in 2007 to 1 in 25,826 in 2013. Although diagnosis was greater in females of both races, Hispanic patients were diagnosed at a younger age than Caucasians (22 vs. 31 y/o, respectively). The most common diagnostic approach was serological testing combined with duodenal biopsy. The 3 most common gastrointestinal presenting symptoms in Caucasians were diarrhea, abdominal pain and nausea/vomiting, while those in Hispanics were constipation, bloating/abdominal distention and diarrhea. At the time of diagnosis, at least 1/3rd of both Caucasian and Hispanic patients had presented with another autoimmune disorder. Other associated conditions were neurological symptoms and iron‐deficiency anemia. Data from this study suggests that CD in the Hispanic population may be more common in Phoenix than the overall population in the U.S. as described in the literature. It also suggests that Hispanic patients may have different presenting symptoms than do Caucasians. The reason behind the increase in CD incidence in Hispanics is unclear, although increased physician awareness and diagnosis may play a role. Further research and awareness of CD in the Hispanic population may be necessary to optimize diagnosis & treatment of the condition.
  • The Efficacy of Maternity Waiting Homes in Decreasing Maternal and Perinatal Mortality in Low-Income Countries – A Systematic Review

    Ekunwe, Akua Boatemaa; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Coonrod, Dean MD, MPH (The University of Arizona., 2017-05-23)
    Maternal and perinatal mortality remains significantly high in low‐income countries with over 800 deaths per day of women around childbirth. Greater than 90% of such deaths occur in low‐income countries. The concept of maternity waiting homes (MWH) was reintroduced to aid in decreasing maternal and perinatal mortality. Since the previous Cochrane Review in 2012 on maternity waiting homes, there have not been any published randomized controlled studies. Do observational studies on MWHs demonstrate decreased maternal and perinatal mortality in low‐income countries when compared with the standard of care? We searched for primary articles that reported maternal and perinatal deaths as major outcomes in studies who compared MWHs to other methods such as direct hospital admits, we also investigated cesarean delivery rates. Search engines used were: Cochrane Review, Medline and CINAHL. Meta‐analyses and forests plots were formulated using MedCalc Software. Systematic review was drafted using MOOSE guidelines for meta‐analysis and systematic reviews of observation. Seven articles met criteria for this study. The maternal mortality rate for MWH was 105/100,000 and 1,066/100,000 for non‐MWH, Relative Risk (RR) 0.145 (95% Confidence Interval (CI) 0.062 to 0.204). Perinatal mortality rate was 60/1,000 in MWH compared to 65/1,000, RR 0.782 (CI 0.602 to 1.120) in non‐MWH. Stillbirth rate was 18/1,000 in MWH and 184/1,000 in non‐MWH, RR 0.204 (CI 63.88 to 94.08). Neonatal mortality rates were 16/1,000 in MWH and 15/1,000 in non‐MWH, RR 0.862 (CI 0.392 to 1.628). Cesarean deliveries rate was 24/100 for MWH and 18/100 in non‐MWH, RR 1.229 (CI 1.226‐1.555). MHWs statistically decreased maternal death, stillbirths and increased cesarean delivery rates. Overall, the observation nature of the study designs introduces selection biases that may have altered the results of the studies. No randomized trials have been done to date. We suggest cluster‐randomized studies to further evaluate the effect of MWHs.
  • Prospective Detection of Chemoradiation Resistance in Patients with Locally Advanced Esophageal Adenocarcinoma

    Veaco, Jennifer Mitchell; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Stone, John F. PhD (The University of Arizona., 2017)
    Approximately 25% of patients with locoregional esophageal adenocarcinoma (EC) are resistant (marked by minimal tumor regression; TRG 3) to preoperative chemoradiation, including 5FU‐based and CROSS regimens. Previously, an immunohistochemistry (IHC) test that accurately identifies patients as responders (TRG 0‐2) or non‐responders (TRG 3) to neoadjuvant CTRT was developed and validated. The current study was designed to identify gene expression profile (GEP) signatures able to predict response to preoperative treatment. Methods: Formalin‐fixed, paraffin‐embedded (FFPE) tumor tissue from 24 diagnostic biopsies (14 responders, 10 non‐responders) was collected. RNA was isolated, and RT‐PCR performed to assess the expression of 96 candidate genes chosen from in silicoanalysis. Genetic signatures incorporating genes with significant expression differences in pathologically determined responders versus non‐responders were identified, and linear and non‐linear predictive modeling methods were used to assess the accuracy of the signatures for predicting treatment response. Cross validation was performed to attain corrected accuracy values. Ten‐, 18‐, and 24‐gene signatures were identified with significantly different gene expression levels in responders compared to non‐responders (p < 0.05). Functional groups represented by the signatures included DNA damage repair, extracellular matrix remodeling, and 5FU metabolism. Partial Least Squares (PLS) prediction of treatment response was compared to pathologic TRG determined by blinded pathologic reading, and resulted in an area under the curve (AUC) of 0.99 and overall accuracy of 100% for the 24‐gene signature. Corrected AUC of 0.99 and accuracy of 95% resulted from five‐fold cross validation with 20 iterations. Heatmap analysis of the 24‐gene signature separated the EC cases into two distinct clusters, the first with 93% responders and the second with 90% non‐responders. The current study identifies novel gene signatures able to accurately predict EC patient response to preoperative treatment. The GEP may allow non‐responders to avoid unnecessary toxicities associated with chemoradiation therapy.
  • Assessment of the Analgesic Efficacy of Intravenous Ibuprofen in Biliary Colic

    Zurcher, Kenneth; The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix; Quan, Dan DO (The University of Arizona., 2017-05-22)
    It is estimated over 20 million people aged 20‐74 have gallbladder disease, with biliary colic being a common and painful symptom in these patients. Likely due to the relatively recent approval of intravenous ibuprofen use for fever and pain in adults, no assessment of its analgesic efficacy for biliary colic currently exists in the literature. In this double‐blind, randomized, controlled trial we aim to assess the analgesic efficacy of intravenous (IV) ibuprofen given in the emergency department (ED) for the treatment of biliary colic. Analgesic efficacy was evaluated using a visual analog scale (VAS) to assess for a decrease in pain scores. A VAS score decrease of 33% in relation to the VAS taken at the time of therapy drug administration was considered a minimum clinically important difference (MCID) in patient‐perceived pain. A VAS was administered in triage upon enrollment, at the time of therapy administration, at 15‐minute intervals during the first hour post‐administration, and 30‐minute intervals in the second hour. As the standard of care for suspected biliary colic at the study institution is administration of a one‐time dose of IV morphine, patients were not denied initial morphine analgesia and were permitted to receive “rescue” morphine analgesia at any point during their ED course. A total of 22 patients completed the study. 9 were randomized to the IV ibuprofen arm, 9 to placebo, and 4 were excluded for a diagnosis other than biliary colic. Mean VAS values at time 0 to time 120 decreased from 5.78 to 2.31 in the ibuprofen group, and from 5.89 to 2.67 in the control group. There was no statistically significant difference in treatment status of ibuprofen vs. placebo (p‐value (p.) 0.93), though there was a significant decrease in the measured VAS scores over time (0 minutes to 120 minutes, p.0.031) in both ibuprofen and placebo groups. A statistically significant and clinically important decrease in average VAS scores were seen in both placebo and ibuprofen groups (55% and 60%, respectively). There was no difference in time needed to achieve a clinically significant reduction in pain between groups. The sample size of this study may be inadequate to fully assess the analgesic efficacy of IV ibuprofen for biliary colic. In the analysis group (n=18) no significant difference in treatment status of ibuprofen vs. placebo was seen, however there was a statistically and clinically significant decrease in pain in both groups. Two potential confounding factors may have affected the trial’s results: administration of standard‐of‐care IV morphine following initial triage assessment, and the inherent episodic and self‐limited nature of biliary colic.

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