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1.  Mean platelet volume and prevalence of peripheral artery disease, the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 1999–2004 
Atherosclerosis  2010;213(2):586-591.
Objectives
We sought to determine whether mean platelet volume (MPV) is associated with the prevalence of peripheral artery disease (PAD).
Background
Platelets play a pivotal role in the pathogenesis of atherosclerosis and PAD. MPV, a measure of platelet size available in every blood count, is increasingly recognized as an important marker of platelet activity.
Methods
We analyzed data from 6354 participants aged 40 years and older from the 1999 to 2004 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), a nationally representative sample of the US population. PAD was defined as an ankle brachial index ≤0.90 in either leg. Odds ratios and 95% confidence intervals were estimated by logistic regression.
Results
The prevalence of PAD in the cohort was 5.7%. MPV was significantly associated with PAD prevalence (tertile 1 – 4.4%, tertile 2 – 6.1%, tertile 3 – 7.0%, P for trend = 0.003). After adjustment for age, sex, and race, the odds ratio of PAD comparing the highest tertile to the lowest tertile was 1.57 (95% confidence interval 1.15–2.13). After further adjustment for smoking status, hypertension, hypercholesterolemia, diabetes, glomerular filtration rate, body mass index, and platelet count the corresponding odds ratio was 1.58 (95% confidence interval 1.14–2.19). The addition of triglycerides, hemoglobin A1c, and C-reactive protein did not affect the results. The significant association between MPV and PAD was unchanged when MPV was used as a continuous variable.
Conclusions
Mean platelet volume is independently associated with PAD. These findings support the hypothesis that platelet size is an independent predictor of increased risk for PAD.
doi:10.1016/j.atherosclerosis.2010.09.010
PMCID: PMC3739454  PMID: 20940069
Mean platelet volume; Platelets; Peripheral artery disease; Epidemiology
2.  Relationship Express: A Pilot Program to Teach Anesthesiology Residents Communication Skills 
Background
The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education requires residency programs to teach 6 core competencies and to provide evidence of effective standardized training through objective measures. George Washington University's Department of Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine implemented a pilot program to address the interpersonal and communication skill competency. In this program, we aimed to pilot the Relationship Express model, a series of exercises in experiential learning to teach anesthesiology residents to build effective relationships with patients in time-limited circumstances. The purpose of this paper is to describe the application of this model for anesthesiology training.
Methods
A total of 7 first-year clinical anesthesiology residents participated in this pilot study, and 4 residents completed the entire program for analysis purposes. Relationship Express was presented in three 1.5-hour sessions: (1) introduction followed by 2-case, standardized patient pretest with feedback to residents from faculty observers; (2) interpersonal and communication skills didactic workshop with video behavior modeling; and (3) review discussion followed by 2-case, standardized patient posttest and evaluation.
Results
Modified Brookfield comments revealed the following themes: (1) time constraints were realistic compared with clinical practice; (2) admitting errors with patients was difficult; (3) patients were more aware of body language than anticipated; (4) residents liked the group discussions and the video interview; (5) standardized patients were convincing; and (6) residents found the feedback from faculty and standardized patients helpful.
Conclusions
Resident retrospective self-assessment and learning comments confirm the potential value of the Relationship Express model. This program will require further assessment and refinement with a larger number of residents.
doi:10.4300/JGME-D-10-00012.1
PMCID: PMC3010947  PMID: 22132285

Results 1-2 (2)