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3.  Heterosexual spread of human immunodeficiency virus in Edinburgh 
Heterosexual transmission of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) was investigated in 123 subjects with no apparent risk factor for infection other than having had heterosexual intercourse with a person who was either infected with HIV or at high risk of being infected with it. Seven subjects were found to be infected with the virus. Risk factors for transmission included being the regular sexual partner of an abuser of intravenous drugs and having a sexual relationship of more than 18 months' duration. Anal intercourse was not a risk factor in the three subjects who admitted to it. There were 41 regular partnerships with abusers of intravenous drugs in which the antibody state and history were fully known for both partners. In these partnerships male to female transmission of the virus occurred in five out of 34 (15%) and female to male in one out of seven. In 30 couples in whom one partner was known to be positive for HIV and an abuser of intravenous drugs four female partners were found to be seropositive at first testing, but there were no new positive results on subsequent serial testing. In six of these 30 couples both partners abused intravenous drugs but the partner who was negative for HIV remained so. Few of the partnerships always practised safe sexual techniques, even after a partner was known to be positive for HIV.
Heterosexual transmission of HIV occurred but was incomplete and may be related to the timing of the relationship with the infection.
PMCID: PMC2545169  PMID: 3126891
7.  Epidemic of AIDS related virus (HTLV-III/LAV) infection among intravenous drug abusers. 
Stored blood samples from 164 intravenous drug abusers who attended a Scottish general practice were tested for HTLV-III/LAV (human T cell lymphotropic virus type III/lymphadenopathy associated virus) infection. Of those tested, 83 (51%) were seropositive, which is well above the prevalence reported elsewhere in Britain and Europe and approaches that observed in New York City. The timing of taking samples of negative sera and continued drug use suggest that as many as 85% of this population might now be infected. The infection became epidemic in late 1983 and early 1984, thereafter becoming endemic. The practice of sharing needles and syringes correlated with seropositivity, which, combined with the almost exclusive intravenous use of heroin and other behavioural patterns, may explain the high prevalence of HTLV-III/LAV infection in the area. Rapid and aggressive intervention is needed to control the spread of infection.
PMCID: PMC1339512  PMID: 3081158
10.  Is there a link between cot death and child abuse? 
Forty five babies delivered in Oxford obstetric units who subsequently died unexpectedly in infancy were compared with 134 controls matched for maternal age, social class, parity, and year of birth to see whether five factors identified in an earlier study as predictive of subsequent child abuse would also predict the sudden infant death syndrome. Epidemiological findings had suggested certain similarities between the two events. In contrast with babies who were abused, four of the five factors did not distinguish between babies who died suddenly and unexpectedly and their controls, but there was a slight increase in the proportion of mothers of babies who died suddenly and unexpectedly for whom nursing staff thought that support and advice on feeding the baby were needed. Factors predictive of child abuse did not predict sudden infant death in this study.
PMCID: PMC1442920  PMID: 6434082
12.  Entry to general practice training. 
Since 1979 general practitioner trainees in the North West Region of England have been assessed on knowledge and ability by several tests, including the multiple choice test. Trainers in the region require a score in the MCQ of 45% before taking a trainee into the practice. More British graduates have achieved this score than overseas graduates. The difference was statistically significant. Only applicants who show adequate factual recall should be appointed as trainees.
PMCID: PMC1550172  PMID: 6416548
14.  Fourth goal of perinatal medicine. 
Reduction in maternal mortality, infant mortality, and infant morbidity have been successively the goals of perinatal medicine. The fourth is to reduce bonding failure. In July 1978 a preventive service was started in the John Radcliffe Maternity Hospital. A twice-weekly round is made. Midwives refer families who cause them concern. In the first year the referral rate ws 20.5 per 1000 liveborn babies. The referred sample differed from the hospital population in terms of maternal psychiatric history, marital state and babies' admission to special care. The main reasons for referral were: doubt about parenting ability (27%), psychiatric history (15%), disturbed behaviour in hospital (14%), and diffuse social and medical problems (17%). Long-term care was needed for only 14% of families. At their first birthdays, six babies were placed away from their natural parents; the sample had had a slightly higher than expected admission rate to hospital; the distribution of weights did not differ from the expected; doctors and health visitors were still concerned about one-quarter of the families. Seven cases of screening failure were found among those not referred to our service, but only one was seriously abused. No child referred in the first year has been seriously neglected or abused.
PMCID: PMC1496275  PMID: 6802338
15.  Psychological and social evaluation in cases of deliberate self-poisoning seen in an accident department. 
The outcome in 115 consecutive patients with mild self-poisoning seen by junior medical staff and discharged from the accident department was compared with that of 98 similar patients admitted to the medical wards. Psychiatrists saw only four patients in the accident department and 25 admissions. In making their assessments the junior medical staff considered psychosocial factors as well as the patients' physical condition. Most patients recommended for further care, and discharged from the accident department, subsequently received it. Repetition rates were similar in the two groups and there had been no suicides when patients were followed up at one year. It is feasible for junior staff in an accident department to decide whether patients with self-poisoning need admission or may be discharged with or without subsequent referral for psychiatric or social work help.
PMCID: PMC1496033  PMID: 6800509

Results 1-15 (15)