Excellence in Research and Innovation for Humanity

International Science Index

Commenced in January 1999 Frequency: Monthly Edition: International Paper Count: 16

Medical, Health, Biomedical, Bioengineering and Pharmaceutical Engineering

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  • 16
    An Overview of the Risk for HIV/AIDS among Young Women in South Africa: Gender Based Violence

    Gender-based violence is a reflection of the inequalities that are associated within a society between the men and women that affects the health, dignity, security and autonomy of its victims. There are various determinants that contribute to the health risk of young women who have experienced sexual violence, in countries that have a high prevalence rate for HIV. For instance, in South Africa, where the highest prevalence rate for HIV is among young women, their susceptibility to the virus has been increased by sexual violence and cultural inequalities. Therefore, this study is a review of literature that explores how gender-based violence increases the possibility for HIV/AIDS among young women in South Africa.

    Study on Metabolic and Mineral Balance, Oxidative Stress and Cardiovascular Risk Factors in Type 2 Diabetic Patients on Different Therapy

    Intense oxidative stress, increased glycated hemoglobin and mineral imbalance represent risk factors for complications in diabetic patients. Cardiovascular complications are most common in these patients, including nephropathy. This study was conducted in 2015 at the Procardia Laboratory in Tîrgu Mureș, Romania on 40 type 2 diabetic adults. Routine biochemical tests were performed on the Konleab 20XTi analyzer (serum glucose, total cholesterol, LDL and HDL cholesterol, triglyceride, creatinine, urea). We also measured serum uric acid, magnesium and calcium concentration by photometric procedures, potassium, sodium and chloride by ion selective electrode, and chromium by atomic absorption spectrometry in a group of patients. Glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) dosage was made by reflectometry. Urine analysis was performed using the HandUReader equipment. The level of oxidative stress was measured by serum malondialdehyde dosage using the thiobarbituric acid reactive substances method. MDRD (Modification of Diet in Renal Disease) formula was applied for calculation of creatinine-derived glomerular filtration rate. GraphPad InStat software was used for statistical analysis of the data. The diabetic subject included in the study presented high MDA concentrations, showing intense oxidative stress. Calcium was deficient in 5% of the patients, chromium deficiency was present in 28%. The atherogenic cholesterol fraction was elevated in 13% of the patients. Positive correlation was found between creatinine and MDRD-creatinine values (p<0.0001), 68% of the patients presented increased creatinine values. The majority of the diabetic patients had good control of their diabetes, having optimal HbA1c values, 35% of them presented fasting serum glucose over 120 mg/dl and 18% had glucosuria. Intense oxidative stress and mineral deficiencies can increase the risk of cardiovascular complications in diabetic patients in spite of their good metabolic balance. More than two third of the patients present biochemical signs of nephropathy, cystatin C dosage and microalbuminuria could reveal better the kidney disorder, but glomerular filtration rate calculation formulas are also useful for evaluation of renal function.

    Accuracy of Small Field of View CBCT in Determining Endodontic Working Length
    An in vitro study was carried out to evaluate the feasibility of small field of view (FOV) cone beam computed tomography (CBCT) in determining endodontic working length. The objectives were to determine the accuracy of CBCT in measuring the estimated preoperative working lengths (EPWL), endodontic working lengths (EWL) and file lengths. Access cavities were prepared in 27 molars. For each root canal, the baseline electronic working length was determined using an EAL (Raypex 5). The teeth were then divided into overextended, non-modified and underextended groups and the lengths were adjusted accordingly. Imaging and measurements were made using the respective software of the RVG (Kodak RVG 6100) and CBCT units (Kodak 9000 3D). Root apices were then shaved and the apical constrictions viewed under magnification to measure the control working lengths. The paired t-test showed a statistically significant difference between CBCT EPWL and control length but the difference was too small to be clinically significant. From the Bland Altman analysis, the CBCT method had the widest range of 95% limits of agreement, reflecting its greater potential of error. In measuring file lengths, RVG had a bigger window of 95% limits of agreement compared to CBCT. Conclusions: (1) The clinically insignificant underestimation of the preoperative working length using small FOV CBCT showed that it is acceptable for use in the estimation of preoperative working length. (2) Small FOV CBCT may be used in working length determination but it is not as accurate as the currently practiced method of using the EAL. (3) It is also more accurate than RVG in measuring file lengths.
    An Ergonomic Handle Design for Instruments in Laparoscopic Surgery

    In this paper, the design and evaluation of a handle for laparoscopic surgery is presented. The design of the handle is based on ergonomic principles and tries to avoid awkward postures for surgeons. The handle combines the so-called power-grip and accurate-grip in order to provide strength and accuracy in the performance of surgery. The handle is tested using both objective and subjective approaches. The objective approach uses motion capture techniques to obtain the angles of forearm, arm, wrist and hand. The muscular effort is obtained with electromyography electrodes. On the other hand, a subjective survey has been carried out using questionnaires. Results confirm that the handle is preferred by the majority of the surgeons.

    Investigating Prostaglandin E2 and Intracellular Oxidative Stress Levels in Lipopolysaccharide-Stimulated RAW 264.7 Macrophages upon Treatment with Strobilanthes crispus
    Background: Uncontrolled inflammation may cause serious inflammatory diseases if left untreated. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAIDs) is commonly used to inhibit pro-inflammatory enzymes, thus, reduce inflammation. However, long term administration of NSAIDs leads to various complications. Medicinal plants are getting more attention as it is believed to be more compatible with human body. One of them is a flavonoid-containing medicinal plants, Strobilanthes crispus which has been traditionally claimed to possess anti-inflammatory and antioxidant activities. Nevertheless, its anti-inflammatory activities are yet to be scientifically documented. Objectives: This study aimed to examine the anti-inflammatory activity of S. crispus by investigating its effects on intracellular oxidative stress and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) levels. Materials and Methods: In this study, the Maximum Non-toxic Dose (MNTD) of methanol extract of both leaves and stems of S. crispus was first determined using 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazolyl-2)-2,5-diphenytetrazolium Bromide (MTT) assay. The effects of S. crispus extracts at MNTD and half MNTD (½MNTD) on intracellular ROS as well as PGE2 levels in 1.0 µg/mL LPS-stimulated RAW 264.7 macrophages were then be measured using DCFH-DA and a competitive enzyme immunoassay kit, respectively. Results: The MNTD of leaf extract was determined as 700µg/mL while for stem was as low as 1.4µg/mL. When LPS-stimulated RAW 264.7 macrophages were subjected to the MNTD of S. crispus leaf extract, both intracellular ROS and PGE2 levels were significantly reduced. In contrast, stem extract at both MNTD and ½MNTD did not significantly reduce the PGE2 level, but significantly increased the intracellular ROS level. Conclusion: The methanol leaf extract of S. crispus may possess anti-inflammatory properties as it is able to significantly reduce the intracellular ROS and PGE2 levels of LPS-stimulated cells. Nevertheless, further studies such as investigating the interleukin, nitric oxide and cytokine tumor necrosis factor-α (TNFα) levels has to be conducted to further confirm the anti-inflammatory properties of S. crispus.
    Clinical Factors of Quality Switched Ruby Laser Therapy for Lentigo Depigmentation
    Solar lentigines appear predominantly on chronically sun-exposed areas of skin, such as the face and the back of the hands. Among the several ways to lentigines treatment, quality-switched lasers are well-known effective treatment for removing solar lentigines. The present pilot study was therefore designed to assess the efficacy of quality-switched ruby laser treatment of such lentigines compare between pretreatment and posttreatment of skin brightness. Twenty-two adults with chronic sun-damaged skin (mean age 52.8 years, range 37–74 years) were treated at the Korean site. A 694 nm Q-switched ruby laser was used, with the energy density set from 1.4 to 12.5 J/cm2, to treat solar lentigines. Average brightness of skin color before ruby laser treatment was 137.3 and its skin color was brightened after ruby laser treatment by 150.5. Also, standard deviation of skin color was decreased from 17.8 to 16.4. Regarding the multivariate model, age and energy were identified as significant factors for skin color brightness change in lentigo depigmentation by ruby laser treatment. Their respective odds ratios were 1.082 (95% CI, 1.007–1.163), and 1.431 (95% CI, 1.051–1.946). Lentigo depigmentation treatment using ruby lasers resulted in a high performance in skin color brightness. Among the relative factors involve with ruby laser treatment, age and energy were the most effective factors which skin color change to brighter than pretreatment.
    Ports and Airports: Gateways to Vector-Borne Diseases in Portugal Mainland

    Vector-borne diseases are transmitted to humans by mosquitos, sandflies, bugs, ticks, and other vectors. Some are re-transmitted between vectors, if the infected human has a new contact when his levels of infection are high. The vector is infected for lifetime and can transmit infectious diseases not only between humans but also from animals to humans. Some vector borne diseases are very disabling and globally account for more than one million deaths worldwide. The mosquitoes from the complex Culex pipiens sl. are the most abundant in Portugal, and we dispose in this moment of a data set from the surveillance program that has been carried on since 2006 across the country. All mosquitos’ species are included, but the large coverage of Culex pipiens sl. and its importance for public health make this vector an interesting candidate to assess risk of disease amplification. This work focus on ports and airports identified as key areas of high density of vectors. Mosquitoes being ectothermic organisms, the main factor for vector survival and pathogen development is temperature. Minima and maxima local air temperatures for each area of interest are averaged by month from data gathered on a daily basis at the national network of meteorological stations, and interpolated in a geographic information system (GIS). The range of temperatures ideal for several pathogens are known and this work shows how to use it with the meteorological data in each port and airport facility, to focus an efficient implementation of countermeasures and reduce simultaneously risk transmission and mitigation costs. The results show an increased alert with decreasing latitude, which corresponds to higher minimum and maximum temperatures and a lower amplitude range of the daily temperature.

    Hepatoprotective Effect of Oleuropein against Cisplatin-Induced Liver Damage in Rat

    Cisplatin (CIS) is one of the most effective an anticancer drug and also toxic to cells by activating oxidative stress. Oleuropein (OLE) has key role against oxidative stress in mammalian cells, but the role of this antioxidant in the toxicity of CIS remains unknown. The aim of the present study was to investigate the efficacy of OLE on CIS-induced liver damages in male rats. With this aim, male Sprague Dawley rats were randomly assigned to one of eight groups: Control group; the group treated with 7 mg/kg/day CIS; the groups treated with 50, 100 and 200 mg/kg/day OLE (i.p.); and the groups treated with OLE for three days starting at 24 h following CIS injection. After 4 days of injections, serum was provided to assess the blood AST, ALT and LDH values. The liver tissues were removed for histological, biochemical (TAC, TOS and MDA) and genotoxic evaluations. In the CIS treated group, the whole liver tissue showed significant histological changes. Also, CIS significantly increased both the incidence of oxidative stress and the induction of 8-hydroxy-deoxyguanosine (8-OH-dG). Moreover, the rats taking CIS have abnormal results on liver function tests. However, these parameters reached to the normal range after administration of OLE for 3 days. Finally, OLE demonstrated an acceptable high potential and was effective in attenuating CIS-induced liver injury. In this trial, the 200 mg/kg dose of OLE firstly appeared to induce the most optimal protective response.

    Pefloxacin as a Surrogate Marker for Ciprofloxacin Resistance in Salmonella: Study from North India

    Fluoroquinolones form the mainstay of therapy for the treatment of infections due to Salmonella enterica subsp. enterica. There is a complex interplay between several resistance mechanisms for quinolones and various fluoroquinolones discs, giving varying results, making detection and interpretation of fluoroquinolone resistance difficult. For detection of fluoroquinolone resistance in Salmonella ssp., we compared the use of pefloxacin and nalidixic acid discs as surrogate marker. Using MIC for ciprofloxacin as the gold standard, 43.5% of strains showed MIC as ≥1 μg/ml and were thus resistant to fluoroquinoloes. Based on the performance of nalidixic acid and pefloxacin discs as surrogate marker for ciprofloxacin resistance, both the discs could correctly detect all the resistant phenotypes; however, use of nalidixic acid disc showed false resistance in the majority of the sensitive phenotypes. We have also tested newer antimicrobial agents like cefixime, imipenem, tigecycline and azithromycin against Salmonella spp. Moreover, there was a comeback of susceptibility to older antimicrobials like ampicillin, chloramphenicol, and cotrimoxazole. We can also use cefixime, imipenem, tigecycline and azithromycin in the treatment of multidrug resistant S. typhi due to their high susceptibility.

    Investigation into Black Oxide Coating of 410 Grade Surgical Stainless Steel Using Alkaline Bath Treatment
    High reflectance of surgical instruments under bright light hinders the visual clarity during laparoscopic surgical procedures leading to loss of precision and device control and creates strain and undesired difficulties to surgeons. Majority of the surgical instruments are made of surgical grade steel. Instruments with a non reflective surface can enhance the visual clarity during precision surgeries. A conversion coating of black oxide has been successfully developed 410 grade surgical stainless steel .The characteristics of the developed coating suggests the application of this technique for developing 410 grade surgical instruments with minimal reflectance.
    Prevalence of Headache among Adult Population in Urban Varanasi, India
    Headache is one of the most ubiquitous and frequent neurological disorders interfering with everyday life in all countries. India appears to be no exception. Objectives are to assess the prevalence of headache among adult population in urban area of Varanasi and to find out factors influencing the occurrence of headache. A community based cross sectional study was conducted among adult population in urban area of Varanasi district, Uttar Pradesh, India. Total 151 eligible respondents were interviewed by simple random sampling technique. Proportion percentage and Chisquare test were applied for data analysis. Out of 151 respondents, majority (58.3%) were females. In this study, 92.8% respondents belonged to age group 18-60 years while 7.2% was either 60 year of age or above. The overall prevalence of headache was found to be 51.1%. Highest and lowest prevalence of headache was recorded in age groups 18-29 year & 40-49 year respectively. Headache was 62.1% in illiterate and was 40.0% among graduate & above. Unskilled workers had more headache 73.1% than other type of occupation. Headache was more prevalent among unemployed (35.9%) than employed (6.4%). Females had higher family history of headache (48.9%) as compared to males (41.3%). Study subjects having peaceful relation with family members, relatives and neighbors had more headache than those having no peaceful relation.  
    Study on the Effect of Pre-Operative Patient Education on Post-Operative Outcomes
    Patient satisfaction represents a crucial aspect in the evaluation of health care services. Preoperative teaching provides the patient with pertinent information concerning the surgical process and the intended surgical procedure as well as anticipated patient behavior (anxiety, fear), expected sensation, and the probable outcomes. Although patient education is part of Accreditation protocols, it is not uniform at most places. The aim of this study was to try to assess the benefit of preoperative patient education on selected post-operative outcome parameters; mainly, post-operative pain scores, requirement of additional analgesia, return to activity of daily living and overall patient satisfaction, and try to standardize few education protocols. Dependent variables were measured before and after the treatment on a study population of 302 volunteers. Educational intervention was provided by the Investigator in the preoperative period to the study group through personal counseling. An information booklet contained detailed information was also provided. Statistical Analysis was done using Chi square test, Mann Whitney u test and Fischer Exact Test on a total of 302 subjects. P value <0.05 was considered as level of statistical significance and p<0.01 was considered as highly significant. This study suggested that patients who are given a structured, individualized and elaborate preoperative education and counseling have a better ability to cope up with postoperative pain in the immediate post-operative period. However, there was not much difference when the patients have had almost complete recovery. There was no difference in the requirement of additional analgesia among the two groups. There is a positive effect of preoperative counseling on expected return to the activities of daily living and normal work schedule. However, no effect was observed on the activities in the immediate post-operative period. There is no difference in the overall satisfaction score among the two groups of patients. Thus this study concludes that there is a positive benefit as suggested by the results for pre-operative patient education. Although the difference in various parameters studied might not be significant over a long term basis, they definitely point towards the benefits of preoperative patient education. 
    Efficacy of Biofeedback-Assisted Pelvic Floor Muscle Training on Postoperative Stress Urinary Incontinence

    Background: Urinary incontinence is a common problem among adults. Its incidence increases with age and it is more frequent in women. Pelvic floor muscle training (PFMT) is the first-line therapy in the treatment of pelvic floor dysfunction (PFD) either alone or combined with biofeedback-assisted PFMT. The aim of the work: The purpose of this study is to evaluate the efficacy of biofeedback-assisted PFMT in postoperative stress urinary incontinence. Settings and Design: A single blind controlled trial design was. Methods and Material: This study was carried out in 30 volunteer patients diagnosed as severe degree of stress urinary incontinence and they were admitted to surgical treatment. They were divided randomly into two equal groups: (Group A) consisted of 15 patients who had been treated with post-operative biofeedback-assisted PFMT and home exercise program (Group B) consisted of 15 patients who had been treated with home exercise program only. Assessment of all patients in both groups (A) and (B) was carried out before and after the treatment program by measuring intra-vaginal pressure in addition to the visual analog scale. Results: At the end of the treatment program, there was a highly statistically significant difference between group (A) and group (B) in the intra-vaginal pressure and the visual analog scale favoring the group (A). Conclusion: biofeedback-assisted PFMT is an effective method for the symptomatic relief of post-operative female stress urinary incontinence.

    Laboratory Indices in Late Childhood Obesity: The Importance of DONMA Indices
    Obesity in childhood establishes a ground for adulthood obesity. Especially morbid obesity is an important problem for the children because of the associated diseases such as diabetes mellitus, cancer and cardiovascular diseases. In this study, body mass index (BMI), body fat ratios, anthropometric measurements and ratios were evaluated together with different laboratory indices upon evaluation of obesity in morbidly obese (MO) children. Children with nutritional problems participated in the study. Written informed consent was obtained from the parents. Study protocol was approved by the Ethics Committee. Sixty-two MO girls aged 129.5±35.8 months and 75 MO boys aged 120.1±26.6 months were included into the scope of the study. WHO-BMI percentiles for age-and-sex were used to assess the children with those higher than 99th as morbid obesity. Anthropometric measurements of the children were recorded after their physical examination. Bio-electrical impedance analysis was performed to measure fat distribution. Anthropometric ratios, body fat ratios, Index-I and Index-II as well as insulin sensitivity indices (ISIs) were calculated. Girls as well as boys were binary grouped according to homeostasis model assessment-insulin resistance (HOMA-IR) index of <2.5 and >2.5, fasting glucose to insulin ratio (FGIR) of <6 and >6 and quantitative insulin sensitivity check index (QUICKI) of <0.33 and >0.33 as the frequently used cut-off points. They were evaluated based upon their BMIs, arms, legs, trunk, whole body fat percentages, body fat ratios such as fat mass index (FMI), trunk-to-appendicular fat ratio (TAFR), whole body fat ratio (WBFR), anthropometric measures and ratios [waist-to-hip, head-to-neck, thigh-to-arm, thigh-to-ankle, height/2-to-waist, height/2-to-hip circumference (C)]. SPSS/PASW 18 program was used for statistical analyses. p≤0.05 was accepted as statistically significance level. All of the fat percentages showed differences between below and above the specified cut-off points in girls when evaluated with HOMA-IR and QUICKI. Differences were observed only in arms fat percent for HOMA-IR and legs fat percent for QUICKI in boys (p≤ 0.05). FGIR was unable to detect any differences for the fat percentages of boys. Head-to-neck C was the only anthropometric ratio recommended to be used for all ISIs (p≤0.001 for both girls and boys in HOMA-IR, p≤0.001 for girls and p≤0.05 for boys in FGIR and QUICKI). Indices which are recommended for use in both genders were Index-I, Index-II, HOMA/BMI and log HOMA (p≤0.001). FMI was also a valuable index when evaluated with HOMA-IR and QUICKI (p≤0.001). The important point was the detection of the severe significance for HOMA/BMI and log HOMA while they were evaluated also with the other indices, FGIR and QUICKI (p≤0.001). These parameters along with Index-I were unique at this level of significance for all children. In conclusion, well-accepted ratios or indices may not be valid for the evaluation of both genders. This study has emphasized the limiting properties for boys. This is particularly important for the selection process of some ratios and/or indices during the clinical studies. Gender difference should be taken into consideration for the evaluation of the ratios or indices, which will be recommended to be used particularly within the scope of obesity studies.
    Health Assessment and Disorders of External Respiration Function among Physicians

    Aims and Objectives: Assessment of health status and detection disorders of external respiration functions (ERF) during preventative medical examination among physicians of Armenia. Subjects and Methods: Overall, fifty-nine physicians (17 men and 42 women) were examined and spirometry was carried out. The average age of the physicians was 50 years old. The studies were conducted on the Micromedical MicroLab 3500 Spirometer. Results: 25.4% among 59 examined physicians are overweight; 22.0% of them suffer from obesity. Two physicians are currently smokers. About half of the examined physicians (50.8%) at the time of examination were diagnosed with some diseases and had different health-related problems (excluding the problems related to vision and hearing). FVC was 2.94±0.1, FEV1 – 2.64±0.1, PEF – 329.7±19.9, and FEV1%/FVC – 89.7±1.3. Pathological changes of ERF are identified in 23 (39.0%) cases. 28.8% of physicians had first degree of restrictive disorders, 3.4% – first degree of combined obstructive/ restrictive disorders, 6.8% – second degree of combined obstructive/ restrictive disorders. Only three physicians with disorders of the ERF were diagnosed with chronic bronchitis and bronchial asthma. There were no statistically significant changes in ERF depending on the severity of obesity (P> 0.05). Conclusion: The study showed the prevalence of ERF among physicians, observing mainly mild and moderate changes in ERF parameters.

    Gender Differences in Morbid Obese Children: Clinical Significance of Two Diagnostic Obesity Notation Model Assessment Indices

    Childhood obesity is an ever increasing global health problem, affecting both developed and developing countries. Accurate evaluation of obesity in children requires difficult and detailed investigation. In our study, obesity in children was evaluated using new body fat ratios and indices. Assessment of anthropometric measurements, as well as some ratios, is important because of the evaluation of gender differences particularly during the late periods of obesity. A total of 239 children; 168 morbid obese (MO) (81 girls and 87 boys) and 71 normal weight (NW) (40 girls and 31 boys) children, participated in the study. Informed consent forms signed by the parents were obtained. Ethics Committee approved the study protocol. Mean ages (years)±SD calculated for MO group were 10.8±2.9 years in girls and 10.1±2.4 years in boys. The corresponding values for NW group were 9.0±2.0 years in girls and 9.2±2.1 years in boys. Mean body mass index (BMI)±SD values for MO group were 29.1±5.4 kg/m2 and 27.2±3.9 kg/m2 in girls and boys, respectively. These values for NW group were calculated as 15.5±1.0 kg/m2 in girls and 15.9±1.1 kg/m2 in boys. Groups were constituted based upon BMI percentiles for age-and-sex values recommended by WHO. Children with percentiles >99 were grouped as MO and children with percentiles between 85 and 15 were considered NW. The anthropometric measurements were recorded and evaluated along with the new ratios such as trunk-to-appendicular fat ratio, as well as indices such as Index-I and Index-II. The body fat percent values were obtained by bio-electrical impedance analysis. Data were entered into a database for analysis using SPSS/PASW 18 Statistics for Windows statistical software. Increased waist-to-hip circumference (C) ratios, decreased head-to-neck C, height ‘to’ ‘two’-‘to’-waist C and height ‘to’ ‘two’-‘to’-hip C ratios were observed in parallel with the development of obesity (p≤0.001). Reference value for height ‘to’ ‘two’-‘to’-hip ratio was detected as approximately 1.0. Index-II, based upon total body fat mass, showed much more significant differences between the groups than Index-I based upon weight. There was not any difference between trunk-to-appendicular fat ratios of NW girls and NW boys (p≥0.05). However, significantly increased values for MO girls in comparison with MO boys were observed (p≤0.05). This parameter showed no difference between NW and MO states in boys (p≥0.05). However, statistically significant increase was noted in MO girls compared to their NW states (p≤0.001). Trunk-to-appendicular fat ratio was the only fat-based parameter, which showed gender difference between NW and MO groups. This study has revealed that body ratios and formula based upon body fat tissue are more valuable parameters than those based on weight and height values for the evaluation of morbid obesity in children.