Recent Submissions

  • A budget impact analysis of a clinical medication review of patients in an Irish university teaching hospital

    Kearney, Alan; Walsh, Elaine. K; Kirby, Ann; Halleran, Ciaran; Byrne, Derina; Haugh, Jennifer; Sahm, Laura. J (Global & Regional Health Technology, 2018-09)
    To measure the net benefit of a pharmacist-led medication review in acute public hospitals. To identify and measure the resources used when completing a pharmacist-led medication review, an observational study was conducted in an acute urban university teaching hospital. Health Information and Quality Authority guidelines were used to value resources used in a pharmacist-led medication review. Model inputs included demographic data, probability of adverse drug events associated with the pharmacist interventions, estimates of future discharges and cost data. The cost of a pharmacist-led medication review and savings generated from avoidance of adverse drug events were estimated and projected over a 5-year period, using hospital discharge rates taken from the hospital inpatient enquiry system and the census of population. Using the per-patient cost of a medication review, the annual cost of delivering a bi-weekly medication review is projected to vary between €6 m and €6.4 m over a 5-year period from 2017 to 2021. The per-patient net benefit of a bi-weekly medication review is €45.88. Therefore, the projected annual net benefit of a bi-weekly medication review is between €29.5 m and €31.2 m over the 5-year period of 2017 to 2021. Introducing a pharmacist-led medication review for each inpatient saves in the short and longer term. The results are consistent with previous findings. Substantial savings were estimated, regardless of variation in model parameters tested in sensitivity analysis.
  • Patients' perception of privacy and confidentiality in the emergency department of a busy obstetric unit.

    Hartigan, Lucia; Cussen, Leanne; Meaney, Sarah; O'Donoghue, Keelin (BMC Health Services Research, 2018-12-18)
    Privacy and confidentiality are central components of patient care and are of particular importance in obstetrics and gynaecology, where clinical situations of a sensitive nature regularly occur. The layout of the emergency department (ED) in maternity units is often not conducive to maintaining privacy. Our study aimed to discover if changing the environment could improve patients' experiences in the ED. We surveyed patients and asked specific questions about their perception of privacy in the ED. We then repeated the survey following renovations to the ED which involved replacing curtained patient areas with walled cubicles. There were 75 pre-renovation surveys and 82 post-renovation surveys completed. Before the renovations took place, only 21% (n = 16) found their privacy to be adequate during their visit to the ED. However this rose to 89% (n = 73) post-renovation. Our study showed that patients' perception of privacy and confidentiality significantly improved following refurbishment of the ED.
  • Annular Rupture During Transcatheter Aortic Valve Implantation: Predictors, Management and Outcomes.

    Coughlan, J J; Kiernan, Thomas; Mylotte, Darren; Arnous, Samer (International Cardiology Review, 2018-09-01)
    Transcatheter aortic valve implantation (TAVI) is the treatment of choice in patients with symptomatic severe aortic stenosis who are either inoperable or at high risk for conventional surgical aortic valve replacement. Recent data have also shown favourable outcomes in patients deemed to be at intermediate operative risk, which expands the application of this novel technology. Despite its success, TAVI has been associated with rare life-threatening complications. Of these, aortic annular rupture is considered to be the most devastating. Advances in pre-procedural screening and patient selection have reduced the incidence of annular rupture. When this complication occurs, early recognition and prompt management are essential. This article is intended to provide a comprehensive review of the predictors, management and clinical outcomes of aortic annular rupture.
  • Temporal trends in hyperuricaemia in the Irish health system from 2006-2014: A cohort study.

    Kumar A U, Arun; Browne, Leonard D; Li, Xia; Adeeb, Fahd; Perez-Ruiz, Fernando; Fraser, Alexander D; Stack, Austin G; University Hospital Limerick (PLOS ONE, 2018-01-01)
    Elevated serum uric acid (sUA) concentrations are common in the general population and are associated with chronic metabolic conditions and adverse clinical outcomes. We evaluated secular trends in the burden of hyperuricaemia from 2006-2014 within the Irish health system. Data from the National Kidney Disease Surveillance Programme was used to determine the prevalence of elevated sUA in adults, age > 18 years, within the Irish health system. Hyperuricaemia was defined as sUA > 416.4 μmol/L in men and > 339.06 μmol/L in women, and prevalence was calculated as the proportion of patients per year with mean sUA levels above sex-specific thresholds. Temporal trends in prevalence were compared from 2006 to 2014 while general estimating equations (GEE) explored variation across calendar years expressed as odds ratios (OR) and 95% Confidence intervals (CI). From 2006 to 2014, prevalence of hyperuricaemia increased from 19.7% to 25.0% in men and from 20.5% to 24.1% in women, P<0.001. The corresponding sUA concentrations increased significantly from 314.6 (93.9) in 2006 to 325.6 (96.2) in 2014, P<0.001. Age-specific prevalence increased in all groups from 2006 to 2014, and the magnitude of increase was similar for each age category. Adjusting for baseline demographic characteristics and illness indicators, the likelihood of hyperuricemia was greatest for patients in 2014; OR 1.45 (1.26-1.65) for men and OR 1.47 (1.29-1.67) in women vs 2006 (referent). Factors associated with hyperuricaemia included: worsening kidney function, elevated white cell count, raised serum phosphate and calcium levels, elevated total protein and higher haemoglobin concentrations, all P<0.001. The burden of hyperuricaemia is substantial in the Irish health system and has increased in frequency over the past decade. Advancing age, poorer kidney function, measures of nutrition and inflammation, and regional variation all contribute to increasing prevalence, but these do not fully explain emerging trends.
  • Neonatal Therapeutic Hypothermia in Ireland Annual Report 2016-2017

    Meaney, S; McGinley, J; Horkan, S; Corcoran, P; Greene, RA; Murphy, J; National Perinatal Epidemiology Centre Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology University College Cork (National Perinatal Epidemiology Centre, 2018)
  • Infants who required Therapeutic Hypothermia in Ireland, 2016-2017: lay summary

    National Perinatal Epidemiology Centre (Cork University Maternity Hospital, 2018)
    The National Clinical Programme Paediatrics and Neonatology (NCPPN) has identified a gap in the knowledge available nationally to clinicians and managers regarding TH. In 2017, a collaboration was agreed between the NCPPN and the National Perinatal Epidemiology Centre to examine the care of all infants who underwent TH in the years, 2016 and 2017. The primary aim of this report is to present an overview and national statistics on TH in Ireland for the years 2016 and 2017.
  • Placental FKBP51 mediates a link between second trimester maternal anxiety and birthweight in female infants.

    Togher, Katie L; O'Keeffe, Gerard W; Khashan, Ali S; Clarke, Gerard; Kenny, Louise C; Cork University Maternity Hospital and University College Cork (Scientific Reports, 2018-10-11)
    Prenatal distress is associated with adverse outcomes in affected offspring. Alterations in placental glucocorticoid signalling and subsequent foetal overexposure to glucocorticoids have been implicated as an underlying mechanism. Infant sex is emerging as an important factor in disease susceptibility. This study aimed to examine the effects of maternal distress across pregnancy on birth outcomes and placental glucocorticoid genes in a sex-dependent manner. Participants completed psychological distress questionnaires throughout pregnancy. Placental HSD11B2, NR3C1 and FKBP51 were analysed by real time PCR and cortisol was measured in new-born hair. Second trimester stress was negatively correlated with birthweight in males and positively correlated with placental NR3C1 mRNA in females. Second trimester anxiety was negatively correlated with birthweight and placental FKBP51 mRNA in females. In mediation analysis, placental FKBP51 mRNA expression was found to mediate the link between prenatal anxiety and birthweight. New-born cortisol was negatively correlated with second trimester anxiety and positively correlated with female placental FKBP51 mRNA levels. Again, FKBP51 mRNA was found to mediate the link between anxiety and new-born cortisol. These results highlight a role for FKBP51 in the placental response to prenatal distress in females. The precise role that placental FKBP51 has in foetal and infant development has not been extensively studied and warrants further investigations.
  • Merkel Cell Carcinoma: A Case Series

    Zafar, S.A; O.M Ahmed, O.M; Boland, M.R; Aucharaz, N; Lal, A (Irish Medical Journal, 2018-10)
    Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC) is a rare cutaneous tumour that is clinically aggressive with a high local, regional, and distant metastatic potential.
  • IgG4 Related Disease, A Case of Large Vessel Vasculitis

    O’Sullivan, A; Ghazi Al Qatari, S; Murphy, G; Cork University Hospital (Irish Medical Journal, 2018-10)
    This report describes a case of large vessel vasculitis highlighting diagnostic and therapeutic challenges. It describes the use of the B cell depleting agent Rituximab in this setting. This is the case of a 50 year old lady with bipolar disorder presenting with lower limb pain.
  • Coming of Age in Ireland: the Twilight Zone!

    Power, B.D; Stewart, P; Stone, G; O’Reilly, P; Costigan, C; O’Gorman, C; Murphy, A.M; University Hospital Limerick (Irish Medical Journal, 2018-10)
    To describe the healthcare needs of adolescent patients inhabiting the ‘seventh age of childhood’ in our region with a view towards future workforce and infrastructure planning.
  • Report on the death of patients in whom CPE had been detected

    Spencer, Robert C.
    Following the first Irish outbreak of Carbapenemase Producing Enterobacteriaceae [CPE] at UHL in 2011, there has been an ongoing increased detection of CPE in the UL Hospitals Group (ULHG) with multiple associated outbreaks. An extensive screening programme is currently in place; in critical care and for newly admitted patients should they fulfil specific screening criteria [ULHG Guidelines for the Prevention, Control & Management of CRE including KPC. Document: QPRS-IPCH-10 Approved January 2016].
  • Caffeine Treatment for Apnea of Prematurity and the Influence on Dose-Dependent Postnatal Weight Gain Observed Over 15 Years.

    Philip, Roy K; Ismail, Abu; Murphy, Bernadette; Mirza, Adnan; Quinn, Collette; Dunworth, Margo; University Hospital Limerick (Journal of Caffeine and Adenosine Research, 2018-09-01)
    To analyze the influence on weight gain of infants exposed to two dosage regimens of oral caffeine citrate (CC) for apnea of prematurity.
  • Use of “Months of the Year Backwards” (MOTYB) as a Screening Tool for Delirium in Palliative Care Patients in the Acute Hospital Setting

    Ryan, S; Hayes, D; Creedon, B; University Hospital Waterford (Irish Medical Journal, 2018-09)
    Delirium is common in palliative care. It effects up to 88% of patients with advanced cancer at end of life and has a point prevalence of 20% in the acute hospital setting across all diagnoses. It is under diagnosed and not optimally treated. “Months of the Year Backwards” (MOTYB) is an ideal screening tool for delirium with a sensitivity of 83.8%. It is brief to perform and carries low burden for patients. The aim of this study is to investigate the use of MOTYB as a screening tool for delirium in palliative care patients in the acute hospital setting.
  • Temporal trends in acute kidney injury across health care settings in the Irish health system: a cohort study.

    Stack, Austin G; Li, Xia; Kaballo, Mohamed; Elsayed, Mohamed E; Johnson, Howard; Murray, Patrick T; Saran, Rajiv; Browne, Leonard D (Nephrology, dialysis, transplantation, 2018-08-07)
    Complete ascertainment of the true rates of acute kidney injury (AKI) and emerging trends are essential for planning of preventive strategies within health systems. We conducted a retrospective cohort study from 2005 to 2014 using data from regional laboratory information systems to determine incidence rates of AKI and severity Stages 1-3 in the Irish health system. Multivariable models were developed to explore annual trends and the contributions of demographic factors, clinical measures, geographic factors and location of medical supervision expressed as adjusted odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs). From 2005 to 2014, incidence rates of AKI increased from 6.1% (5.8-6.3) to 13.2% (12.7-13.8) per 100 patient-years in men and from 5.0% (4.8-5.2) to 11.5% (11.0-12.0) in women, P < 0.001. Stage 1 AKI accounted for the greatest growth in incidence, from 4.4% (95% CI 4.3-4.6) in 2005 to 10.1% (95% CI 9.8-10.5) in 2014 (P < 0.001 for trend). Compared with 2005, patients in 2014 were more likely to experience AKI [OR 4.53 (95% CI 4.02-5.1) for Stage 1, OR 5.22 (4.16-6.55) for Stage 2 and OR 4.11 (3.05-5.54) for Stage 3], adjusting for changing demographic and clinical profiles. Incidence rates of AKI increased in all locations of medical supervision during the period of observation, but were greatest for inpatient [OR 19.11 (95% CI 17.69-20.64)] and emergency room settings [OR 5.97 (95% CI 5.56-6.42)] compared with a general practice setting (referent). Incidence rates of AKI have increased substantially in the Irish health system, which were not accounted for by changing demographic patterns, clinical profiles or location of medical supervision.
  • Intrapartum fetal deaths and unexpected neonatal deaths in the Republic of Ireland: 2011 - 2014; a descriptive study.

    McNamara, K; O'Donoghue, K; Greene, R A (BMC Pregnancy Childbirth, 2018-01-04)
    Intrapartum fetal death, the death of a fetus during labour, is a tragic outcome of pregnancy. The intrapartum death rate of a country is reflective of the care received by mothers and babies in labour and it is through analysing these cases that good aspects of care, as well as areas for improvement can be identified. Investigating unexpected neonatal deaths that may be associated with an intrapartum event is also helpful to fully appraise intrapartum care. This is a descriptive study of intrapartum fetal deaths and unexpected neonatal deaths in Ireland from 2011 to 2014. Anonymised data pertaining to all intrapartum fetal deaths and unexpected neonatal deaths for the study time period was obtained from the national perinatal epidemiology centre. All statistical analyses were conducted using Statistical package for the Social Sciences (SPSS). There were 81 intrapartum fetal deaths from 2011 to 2014, and 36 unexpected neonatal deaths from 2012 to 2014. The overall intrapartum death rate was 0.29 per 1000 births and the corrected intrapartum fetal death rate was 0.16 per 1000 births. The overall unexpected neonatal death rate was 0.17 per 1000 live births. Major Congenital Malformation accounted for 36/81 intrapartum deaths, chorioamnionitis for 18/81, and placental abruption accounted for eight babies' deaths. Intrapartum asphyxia accounted for eight of the intrapartum deaths. With respect to the neonatal deaths over half (21/36, 58.3%) of the babies died as a result of hypoxic ischaemic encephalopathy. Information is also reported on both maternal and individual baby demographics. This is the first detailed descriptive analysis of intrapartum deaths and unexpected intrapartum event related neonatal deaths in Ireland. The corrected intrapartum fetal death rate was 0.16 per 1000 births. Despite our results being based on the best available national data on intrapartum deaths and unexpected neonatal deaths, we were unable to identify if any of these deaths could have been prevented. A more formal confidential inquiry based system is necessary to fully appraise these cases.
  • Development and psychometric testing of the clinical leadership needs analysis (CLeeNA) instrument for nurses and midwives.

    Mc Carthy, Vera J C; Murphy, Ashling; Savage, Eileen; Hegarty, Josephine; Coffey, Alice; Leahy-Warren, Patricia; Horgan, Aine; O'Connell, Rhona; Marsh, Lynne; Drennan, Jonathan (Journal of Nursing Management, 2018-08-31)
    The aim of this study is to report the development and psychometric testing of the clinical leadership needs analysis instrument (CLeeNA). Limited emphasis is placed on the clinical leadership needs of nurses and midwives that are fundamental to supporting the delivery of high quality, safe patient care. A development and validation study of CLeeNA was undertaken using cross-sectional data. A sample of 324 registered nurses and midwives completed the questionnaire using a 7-point adjectival scale. Principal component analysis was conducted to explore scale grouping of items (n = 103 items). Principal component analysis, item reduction and parallel analysis on the items of the instrument resulted in seven factors consisting of 56 items. These factors were identified as: Staff and Care Delivery; Technology and Care Initiatives; Self and Team Development; Standards of Care; Financial and Service Management; Leadership and Clinical Practice; Patient Safety and Risk Management.
  • Giant Cell Arteritis Presenting as an Ischaemic Upper Limb

    Fitzgerald, Gerald; O’Connor, Mortimer B.; Phelan, Mark J.; Mercy University Hospital, Cork (Irish Medical Journal, 2018-07)
    Aim: To present an interesting case of giant cell arteritis presenting as ischaemic upper limb. Methods Data was collected from the patient’s chart and from radiology and laboratory systems in our institution. Results: The patient had a temporal artery biopsy confirming the diagnosis of temporal arteritis. This was successfully treated with high dose steroids leading to resolution of symptoms in the arm. Conclusion: Arteritis is an important consideration to consider in patients who present with limb ischaemia as it is a reversible cause which can be treated effectively.
  • Gene-trait matching across the Bifidobacterium longum pan-genome reveals considerable diversity in carbohydrate catabolism among human infant strains.

    Arboleya, S; Bottacini, F; O'Connell-Motherway, M; Ryan, CA; Ross, RP; van Sinderen, D; Stanton, C; University College Cork (Irish Medical Journal, 2018-07)
    Bifidobacterium longum is a common member of the human gut microbiota and is frequently present at high numbers in the gut microbiota of humans throughout life, thus indicative of a close symbiotic host-microbe relationship. Different mechanisms may be responsible for the high competitiveness of this taxon in its human host to allow stable establishment in the complex and dynamic intestinal microbiota environment. The objective of this study was to assess the genetic and metabolic diversity in a set of 20 B. longum strains, most of which had previously been isolated from infants, by performing whole genome sequencing and comparative analysis, and to analyse their carbohydrate utilization abilities using a gene-trait matching approach.
  • The Predictive Ability of Pre-Operative Magnetic Resonance Imaging to Detect Pathological Outcomes in Prostate Cancer

    Nason, GJ; Selvarajah, L; O’Connor, EM; O’Kelly, J; Considine, SW; Moss, B; MacMahon, D; Heneghan, J; Meyer, N; Buckley, J; O’Regan, K; O’Brien, MF; Cork university Hospital (Irish Medical Journal, 2018-07)
    Accurate preoperative knowledge of tumour stage is important in preoperative planning at radical prostatectomy (RP). The aim of this study was to assess the predictive ability of multiparametric MRI for detecting pathological outcomes.
  • Sweat Testing in Ireland

    Blake; Tsang, V; Ghori, R; Whelan, S; Boran, G; Linnane, B; University Hospital Limerick (Irish Medical Journal, 2018-07)
    Quick, painless, cheap and reliable, the sweat test remains the gold standard diagnostic test for cystic fibrosis. We aimed to describe the pattern of testing in Ireland over a calendar year.

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