WorldWideScience

Sample records for providing improved visual

  1. Creating visual explanations improves learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bobek, Eliza; Tversky, Barbara

    2016-01-01

    Many topics in science are notoriously difficult for students to learn. Mechanisms and processes outside student experience present particular challenges. While instruction typically involves visualizations, students usually explain in words. Because visual explanations can show parts and processes of complex systems directly, creating them should have benefits beyond creating verbal explanations. We compared learning from creating visual or verbal explanations for two STEM domains, a mechanical system (bicycle pump) and a chemical system (bonding). Both kinds of explanations were analyzed for content and learning assess by a post-test. For the mechanical system, creating a visual explanation increased understanding particularly for participants of low spatial ability. For the chemical system, creating both visual and verbal explanations improved learning without new teaching. Creating a visual explanation was superior and benefitted participants of both high and low spatial ability. Visual explanations often included crucial yet invisible features. The greater effectiveness of visual explanations appears attributable to the checks they provide for completeness and coherence as well as to their roles as platforms for inference. The benefits should generalize to other domains like the social sciences, history, and archeology where important information can be visualized. Together, the findings provide support for the use of learner-generated visual explanations as a powerful learning tool.

  2. Improving visual perception through neurofeedback

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scharnowski, Frank; Hutton, Chloe; Josephs, Oliver; Weiskopf, Nikolaus; Rees, Geraint

    2012-01-01

    Perception depends on the interplay of ongoing spontaneous activity and stimulus-evoked activity in sensory cortices. This raises the possibility that training ongoing spontaneous activity alone might be sufficient for enhancing perceptual sensitivity. To test this, we trained human participants to control ongoing spontaneous activity in circumscribed regions of retinotopic visual cortex using real-time functional MRI based neurofeedback. After training, we tested participants using a new and previously untrained visual detection task that was presented at the visual field location corresponding to the trained region of visual cortex. Perceptual sensitivity was significantly enhanced only when participants who had previously learned control over ongoing activity were now exercising control, and only for that region of visual cortex. Our new approach allows us to non-invasively and non-pharmacologically manipulate regionally specific brain activity, and thus provide ‘brain training’ to deliver particular perceptual enhancements. PMID:23223302

  3. Does visual expertise improve visual recognition memory?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evans, Karla K; Cohen, Michael A; Tambouret, Rosemary; Horowitz, Todd; Kreindel, Erica; Wolfe, Jeremy M

    2011-01-01

    In general, humans have impressive recognition memory for previously viewed pictures. Many people spend years becoming experts in highly specialized image sets. For example, cytologists are experts at searching micrographs filled with potentially cancerous cells and radiologists are expert at searching mammograms for indications of cancer. Do these experts develop robust visual long-term memory for their domain of expertise? If so, is this expertise specific to the trained image class, or do such experts possess generally superior visual memory? We tested recognition memory of cytologists, radiologists, and controls with no medical experience for three visual stimulus classes: isolated objects, scenes, and mammograms or micrographs. Experts were better than control observers at recognizing images from their domain, but their memory for those images was not particularly good (D' ~ 1.0) and was much worse than memory for objects or scenes (D' > 2.0). Furthermore, experts were not better at recognizing scenes or isolated objects than control observers.

  4. Does visual expertise improve visual recognition memory?

    OpenAIRE

    Evans, Karla K.; Cohen, Michael A.; Tambouret, Rosemary; Horowitz, Todd; Kreindel, Erica; Wolfe, Jeremy M.

    2011-01-01

    In general, humans have impressive recognition memory for previously viewed pictures. Many people spend years becoming experts in highly specialized image sets. For example, cytologists are experts at searching micrographs filled with potentially cancerous cells and radiologists are expert at searching mammograms for indications of cancer. Do these experts develop robust visual long-term memory for their domain of expertise? If so, is this expertise specific to the trained image class, or do ...

  5. An Adaptive Tutor for Improving Visual Diagnosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-10-01

    AWARD NUMBER: W81XWH-16-1-0797 TITLE: An Adaptive Tutor for Improving Visual Diagnosis PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Martin V. Pusic, MD RECIPIENT... Visual Diagnosis 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER 5b. GRANT NUMBER W81XWH-16-1-0797 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER 6. AUTHOR(S) Martin V. Pusic – NYUSoM; David...for visual diagnosis can transcend institutional barriers to enable broad distribution of learning material. However, most current examples are based

  6. Successful computer-based visual training specifically predicts visual memory enhancement over verbal memory improvement in schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Surti, Toral S; Corbera, Silvia; Bell, Morris D; Wexler, Bruce E

    2011-11-01

    We investigated whether improved early visual processing on cognitive remediation (CR) exercises generalizes to visual and auditory learning and information manipulation in schizophrenia. Fourteen participants received neuropsychological testing before and after CR consisting of visual, auditory and cognitive control training. Achievement on visual training exercises was strongly and significantly correlated with improved visual learning, but not improved verbal learning or increased ability to manipulate visual information. Improvement in training, not training time, predicted cognitive gain. Implications for improving cognitive outcomes from CR include ensuring the trained task is learned and providing exercises of multiple modalities. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Perceptual learning in children with visual impairment improves near visual acuity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huurneman, Bianca; Boonstra, F Nienke; Cox, Ralf F A; van Rens, Ger; Cillessen, Antonius H N

    2013-09-17

    This study investigated whether visual perceptual learning can improve near visual acuity and reduce foveal crowding effects in four- to nine-year-old children with visual impairment. Participants were 45 children with visual impairment and 29 children with normal vision. Children with visual impairment were divided into three groups: a magnifier group (n = 12), a crowded perceptual learning group (n = 18), and an uncrowded perceptual learning group (n = 15). Children with normal vision also were divided in three groups, but were measured only at baseline. Dependent variables were single near visual acuity (NVA), crowded NVA, LH line 50% crowding NVA, number of trials, accuracy, performance time, amount of small errors, and amount of large errors. Children with visual impairment trained during six weeks, two times per week, for 30 minutes (12 training sessions). After training, children showed significant improvement of NVA in addition to specific improvements on the training task. The crowded perceptual learning group showed the largest acuity improvements (1.7 logMAR lines on the crowded chart, P visual impairment benefit from perceptual training. While task-specific improvements were observed in all training groups, transfer to crowded NVA was largest in the crowded perceptual learning group. To our knowledge, this is the first study to provide evidence for the improvement of NVA by perceptual learning in children with visual impairment. (http://www.trialregister.nl number, NTR2537.).

  8. Color improves "visual" acuity via sound.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levy-Tzedek, Shelly; Riemer, Dar; Amedi, Amir

    2014-01-01

    Visual-to-auditory sensory substitution devices (SSDs) convey visual information via sound, with the primary goal of making visual information accessible to blind and visually impaired individuals. We developed the EyeMusic SSD, which transforms shape, location, and color information into musical notes. We tested the "visual" acuity of 23 individuals (13 blind and 10 blindfolded sighted) on the Snellen tumbling-E test, with the EyeMusic. Participants were asked to determine the orientation of the letter "E." The test was repeated twice: in one test, the letter "E" was drawn with a single color (white), and in the other test, with two colors (red and white). In the latter case, the vertical line in the letter, when upright, was drawn in red, with the three horizontal lines drawn in white. We found no significant differences in performance between the blind and the sighted groups. We found a significant effect of the added color on the "visual" acuity. The highest acuity participants reached in the monochromatic test was 20/800, whereas with the added color, acuity doubled to 20/400. We conclude that color improves "visual" acuity via sound.

  9. Improved visual cognition through stroboscopic training

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lawrence Gregory eAppelbaum

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Humans have a remarkable capacity to learn and adapt, but surprisingly little research has demonstrated generalized learning in which new skills and strategies can be used flexibly across a range of tasks and contexts. In the present work we examined whether generalized learning could result from visual-motor training under stroboscopic visual conditions. Individuals were assigned to either an experimental condition that trained with stroboscopic eyewear or to a control condition that underwent identical training with non-stroboscopic eyewear. The training consisted of multiple sessions of athletic activities during which participants performed simple drills such as throwing and catching. To determine if training led to generalized cognitive benefits, we used computerized measures to assess perceptual and cognitive abilities on a variety of tasks before and after training. Computer-based assessments included measures of visual sensitivity (central and peripheral motion coherence thresholds, transient spatial attention (a useful field of view – dual task paradigm, and sustained attention (multiple-object tracking. Results revealed that stroboscopic training led to significantly greater re-test improvement in central visual field motion sensitivity and transient attention abilities. No training benefits were observed for peripheral motion sensitivity or peripheral transient attention abilities, nor were benefits seen for sustained multiple-object tracking suggesting that stroboscopic training can effectively improve some, but not all aspects of visual perception and attention.

  10. Improved Visual Cognition through Stroboscopic Training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Appelbaum, L Gregory; Schroeder, Julia E; Cain, Matthew S; Mitroff, Stephen R

    2011-01-01

    Humans have a remarkable capacity to learn and adapt, but surprisingly little research has demonstrated generalized learning in which new skills and strategies can be used flexibly across a range of tasks and contexts. In the present work we examined whether generalized learning could result from visual-motor training under stroboscopic visual conditions. Individuals were assigned to either an experimental condition that trained with stroboscopic eyewear or to a control condition that underwent identical training with non-stroboscopic eyewear. The training consisted of multiple sessions of athletic activities during which participants performed simple drills such as throwing and catching. To determine if training led to generalized benefits, we used computerized measures to assess perceptual and cognitive abilities on a variety of tasks before and after training. Computer-based assessments included measures of visual sensitivity (central and peripheral motion coherence thresholds), transient spatial attention (a useful field of view - dual task paradigm), and sustained attention (multiple-object tracking). Results revealed that stroboscopic training led to significantly greater re-test improvement in central visual field motion sensitivity and transient attention abilities. No training benefits were observed for peripheral motion sensitivity or peripheral transient attention abilities, nor were benefits seen for sustained attention during multiple-object tracking. These findings suggest that stroboscopic training can effectively improve some, but not all aspects of visual perception and attention.

  11. Spherical model provides visual aid for cubic crystal study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bacigalupi, R. J.; Spakowski, A. E.

    1965-01-01

    Transparent sphere of polymethylmethacrylate with major zones and poles of cubic crystals is used to make crystallographic visualizations and to interpret Laue X ray diffraction of single cubic crystals.

  12. Perceptual Learning in Children With Visual Impairment Improves Near Visual Acuity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huurneman, Bianca; Boonstra, F. Nienke; Cox, Ralf F. A.; van Rens, Ger; Cillessen, Antonius H. N.

    PURPOSE. This study investigated whether visual perceptual learning can improve near visual acuity and reduce foveal crowding effects in four-to nine-year-old children with visual impairment. METHODS. Participants were 45 children with visual impairment and 29 children with normal vision. Children

  13. Perceptual learning in children with visual impairment improves near visual acuity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huurneman, B.; Boonstra, F.N.; Cox, R.F.; Rens, G. van; Cillessen, A.H.N.

    2013-01-01

    PURPOSE: This study investigated whether visual perceptual learning can improve near visual acuity and reduce foveal crowding effects in four- to nine-year-old children with visual impairment. METHODS: Participants were 45 children with visual impairment and 29 children with normal vision. Children

  14. Perceptual Learning in Children With Visual Impairment Improves Near Visual Acuity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huurneman, B.; Boonstra, F.N.; Cox, R.F.A.; Rens, G.H.M.B. van; Cillessen, A.H.N.

    2013-01-01

    PURPOSE. This study investigated whether visual perceptual learning can improve near visual acuity and reduce foveal crowding effects in four-to nine-year-old children with visual impairment. METHODS. Participants were 45 children with visual impairment and 29 children with normal vision. Children

  15. Mobile in vivo camera robots provide sole visual feedback for abdominal exploration and cholecystectomy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rentschler, M E; Dumpert, J; Platt, S R; Ahmed, S I; Farritor, S M; Oleynikov, D

    2006-01-01

    The use of small incisions in laparoscopy reduces patient trauma, but also limits the surgeon's ability to view and touch the surgical environment directly. These limitations generally restrict the application of laparoscopy to procedures less complex than those performed during open surgery. Although current robot-assisted laparoscopy improves the surgeon's ability to manipulate and visualize the target organs, the instruments and cameras remain fundamentally constrained by the entry incisions. This limits tool tip orientation and optimal camera placement. The current work focuses on developing a new miniature mobile in vivo adjustable-focus camera robot to provide sole visual feedback to surgeons during laparoscopic surgery. A miniature mobile camera robot was inserted through a trocar into the insufflated abdominal cavity of an anesthetized pig. The mobile robot allowed the surgeon to explore the abdominal cavity remotely and view trocar and tool insertion and placement without entry incision constraints. The surgeon then performed a cholecystectomy using the robot camera alone for visual feedback. This successful trial has demonstrated that miniature in vivo mobile robots can provide surgeons with sufficient visual feedback to perform common procedures while reducing patient trauma.

  16. Improving visual data mining using analyzing editing effect of visual data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bae, Tae Meon; Kang, Seok Jun; Ro, Yong Man

    2005-01-01

    With the increase of multimedia contents in the internet, people need to handle a large amount of multimedia contents in the web as well as e-mail. Visual data mining is needed to find appropriate visual data among large multimedia contents. But editing process, which is common on the web affects the feature of visual data, and causes false retrieval in current visual mining system. In this paper, we propose an improving visual mining method by detecting and reducing image editing effects.

  17. Acoustic noise improves visual perception and modulates occipital oscillatory states.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gleiss, Stephanie; Kayser, Christoph

    2014-04-01

    Perception is a multisensory process, and previous work has shown that multisensory interactions occur not only for object-related stimuli but also for simplistic and apparently unrelated inputs to the different senses. We here compare the facilitation of visual perception induced by transient (target-synchronized) sounds to the facilitation provided by continuous background noise like sounds. Specifically, we show that continuous acoustic noise improves visual contrast detection by systematically shifting psychometric curves in an amplitude-dependent manner. This multisensory benefit was found to be both qualitatively and quantitatively similar to that induced by a transient and target synchronized sound in the same paradigm. Studying the underlying neural mechanisms using electric neuroimaging (EEG), we found that acoustic noise alters occipital alpha (8-12 Hz) power and decreases beta-band (14-20 Hz) coupling of occipital and temporal sites. Task-irrelevant and continuous sounds thereby have an amplitude-dependent effect on cortical mechanisms implicated in shaping visual cortical excitability. The same oscillatory mechanisms also mediate visual facilitation by transient sounds, and our results suggest that task-related sounds and task-irrelevant background noises could induce perceptually and mechanistically similar enhancement of visual perception. Given the omnipresence of sounds and noises in our environment, such multisensory interactions may affect perception in many everyday scenarios.

  18. Visual Aids Improve Diagnostic Inferences and Metacognitive Judgment Calibration

    OpenAIRE

    Rocio eGarcia-Retamero; Cokely, Edward T.; Ulrich eHoffrage

    2015-01-01

    Visual aids can improve comprehension of risks associated with medical treatments, screenings, and lifestyles. Do visual aids also help decision makers accurately assess their risk comprehension? That is, do visual aids help them become well calibrated? To address these questions, we investigated the benefits of visual aids displaying numerical information and measured accuracy of self-assessment of diagnostic inferences (i.e., metacognitive judgment calibration) controlling for individual di...

  19. Improved Visual Cognition through Stroboscopic Training

    OpenAIRE

    Lawrence Gregory eAppelbaum; Julia E Schroeder; Cain, Matthew S.; Mitroff, Stephen R.

    2011-01-01

    Humans have a remarkable capacity to learn and adapt, but surprisingly little research has demonstrated generalized learning in which new skills and strategies can be used flexibly across a range of tasks and contexts. In the present work we examined whether generalized learning could result from visual–motor training under stroboscopic visual conditions. Individuals were assigned to either an experimental condition that trained with stroboscopic eyewear or to a control condition that underwe...

  20. Visual Acuity Improves in Children and Adolescents With Idiopathic Infantile Nystagmus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balzer, Ben W R; Catt, Caroline J; Bou-Abdou, Milia; Martin, Frank J

    2017-10-03

    Idiopathic infantile nystagmus is associated with reduced visual acuity. Recent work has linked extraocular muscle surgery to improvements in visual acuity through childhood but no work has reported long-term secular trends in visual acuity in infantile nystagmus. Our aim is to describe visual acuity changes for children and adolescents with idiopathic infantile nystagmus to allow comparison for future interventional studies. Retrospective chart review. Review of patients attending our center up to the age of 18 with a diagnosis of idiopathic infantile nystagmus and visual acuity measured using Snellen visual acuity. Patients provided informed consent. We observed improvements in best corrected visual acuity in 43 children and adolescents with idiopathic infantile nystagmus. Binocular best corrected visual acuity improved at a rate of -0.16 logarithm of the minimum angle of resolution (logMAR)/log year of age (P visual acuity and age was significant (r = -0.24, P visual acuity in infantile nystagmus and provide a baseline against which future interventional work can be compared. Copyright 2017 Asia-Pacific Academy of Ophthalmology.

  1. Improved discrimination of visual stimuli following repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael L Waterston

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS at certain frequencies increases thresholds for motor-evoked potentials and phosphenes following stimulation of cortex. Consequently rTMS is often assumed to introduce a "virtual lesion" in stimulated brain regions, with correspondingly diminished behavioral performance. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here we investigated the effects of rTMS to visual cortex on subjects' ability to perform visual psychophysical tasks. Contrary to expectations of a visual deficit, we find that rTMS often improves the discrimination of visual features. For coarse orientation tasks, discrimination of a static stimulus improved consistently following theta-burst stimulation of the occipital lobe. Using a reaction-time task, we found that these improvements occurred throughout the visual field and lasted beyond one hour post-rTMS. Low-frequency (1 Hz stimulation yielded similar improvements. In contrast, we did not find consistent effects of rTMS on performance in a fine orientation discrimination task. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Overall our results suggest that rTMS generally improves or has no effect on visual acuity, with the nature of the effect depending on the type of stimulation and the task. We interpret our results in the context of an ideal-observer model of visual perception.

  2. Improving Providers' Role Definitions to Decrease Overcrowding and Improve In-Hospital Cardiac Arrest Response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leary, Marion; Schweickert, William; Neefe, Stacie; Tsypenyuk, Boris; Falk, Scott Austin; Holena, Daniel N

    2016-07-01

    How nontechnical factors such as inadequate role definition and overcrowding affect outcomes of in-hospital cardiac arrest (IHCA) is unknown. Using a bundled intervention, we sought to improve providers' role definitions and decrease overcrowding during IHCA events. To determine if a bundled intervention consisting of a nurse/physician leadership dyad, visual cues for provider roles, and a "role check" would lead to reductions in crowding and improve perceptions of communication and team leadership. Baseline data on the number and type of IHCA providers were collected. Providers were asked to complete a postevent survey rating communication and leadership. A bundled intervention was then introduced. Data were then obtained for the subsequent IHCA events. Twenty ICHA events were captured before and 34 after the intervention. The number of physicians present at pulse checks 2 (median [interquartile range]: 6 [5-8] before vs 5 [3-6] after, P = .02) and 3 (7 [5-9] vs 4 [4-5], P = .004) decreased significantly after the intervention. The overall number of providers at the third pulse check (18 [14-22] before vs 14 [12-16] after, P = .04) also decreased after the intervention. On a 10-point Likert scale, ratings of communication (8 [7-8]) and physician leadership (8 [7-9]) did not differ significantly from before to after the intervention. Both the physician leads (90%) and patients' primary nurses (97%) were able to identify clear nurse leaders. A bundled intervention targeted at improving IHCA response led to a decrease in overcrowding at ICHA events without substantial changes in the perceptions of communication or physician leadership. ©2016 American Association of Critical-Care Nurses.

  3. Big data in medical informatics: improving education through visual analytics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaitsis, Christos; Nilsson, Gunnar; Zary, Nabil

    2014-01-01

    A continuous effort to improve healthcare education today is currently driven from the need to create competent health professionals able to meet healthcare demands. Limited research reporting how educational data manipulation can help in healthcare education improvement. The emerging research field of visual analytics has the advantage to combine big data analysis and manipulation techniques, information and knowledge representation, and human cognitive strength to perceive and recognise visual patterns. The aim of this study was therefore to explore novel ways of representing curriculum and educational data using visual analytics. Three approaches of visualization and representation of educational data were presented. Five competencies at undergraduate medical program level addressed in courses were identified to inaccurately correspond to higher education board competencies. Different visual representations seem to have a potential in impacting on the ability to perceive entities and connections in the curriculum data.

  4. Can visual arts training improve physician performance?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katz, Joel T; Khoshbin, Shahram

    2014-01-01

    Clinical educators use medical humanities as a means to improve patient care by training more self-aware, thoughtful, and collaborative physicians. We present three examples of integrating fine arts - a subset of medical humanities - into the preclinical and clinical training as models that can be adapted to other medical environments to address a wide variety of perceived deficiencies. This novel teaching method has promise to improve physician skills, but requires further validation.

  5. Cognitive and psychological science insights to improve climate change data visualization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harold, Jordan; Lorenzoni, Irene; Shipley, Thomas F.; Coventry, Kenny R.

    2016-12-01

    Visualization of climate data plays an integral role in the communication of climate change findings to both expert and non-expert audiences. The cognitive and psychological sciences can provide valuable insights into how to improve visualization of climate data based on knowledge of how the human brain processes visual and linguistic information. We review four key research areas to demonstrate their potential to make data more accessible to diverse audiences: directing visual attention, visual complexity, making inferences from visuals, and the mapping between visuals and language. We present evidence-informed guidelines to help climate scientists increase the accessibility of graphics to non-experts, and illustrate how the guidelines can work in practice in the context of Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change graphics.

  6. Trabeculectomy Can Improve Long-Term Visual Function in Glaucoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caprioli, Joseph; de Leon, John Mark; Azarbod, Parham; Chen, Andrew; Morales, Esteban; Nouri-Mahdavi, Kouros; Coleman, Anne; Yu, Fei; Afifi, Abdelmonem

    2016-01-01

    of perimetric decay and provide evidence of sustained, long-term improvement of visual function in glaucoma. These findings suggest the possibility of reversal of glaucomatous dysfunction of retinal ganglion cells and their central projections. Copyright © 2016 American Academy of Ophthalmology. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Eye movement feedback fails to improve visual search performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peltier, Chad; Becker, Mark W

    2017-01-01

    Many real-world searches (e.g., radiology and baggage screening) have rare targets. When targets are rare, observers perform rapid, incomplete searches, leading to higher miss rates. To improve search for rare (10% prevalence) targets, we provided eye movement feedback (EMF) to observers during their searches. Although the nature of the EMF varied across experiments, each method informed observers about the regions of the display that had not yet been inspected. We hypothesized that feedback would help guide attention to unsearched areas and increase the proportion of the display searched before making a target-absent response, thereby increasing accuracy. An eye tracker was used to mark fixated areas by either removing a semiopaque gray overlay (Experiments 1 and 4) as portions of the display were fixated or by adding the overlay once the eye left a segment of the image (Experiments 2 and 4). Experiment 3 provided automated EMF, such that a new region was uncovered every 540 milliseconds. Across experiments, we varied whether people searched for "Waldo" in images from "Where's Waldo?" search books or searched for a T among offset Ls. We found weak evidence that EMF improves accuracy in Experiment 1. However, in the remaining experiments, EMF had no effect (Experiment 4), or even reduced accuracy (Experiments 2 and 3). We conclude that the one positive result we found is likely a Type I error and that the EMF method that we used is unlikely to improve visual search performance.

  8. A management framework for training providers to improve skills ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Erna Kinsey

    Training providers need an internal management framework to enable them to improve workplace skills development. ... The management role of workplace training providers in the midst of the skills revolution is under ...... Benefit Analysis to determine a Return on Investment; TQM or Total. Quality Management; and PMF or ...

  9. Improving visual skills: II-remote assessment via Internet.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Powers, Maureen K; Grisham, J David; Wurm, Janice K; Wurm, William C

    2009-02-01

    Even though poor readers often have poor visual skills, such as binocular coordination and oculomotor control, students' visual skills are rarely assessed. Computer assessments have the potential to assist in identifying students whose visual skills are deficient. This study compared assessments made by an Internet-based computer orthoptics program with those of an on-site vision therapist. Students (N = 41) in grades 1 through 8, reading at least 2 levels below grade, were assessed for visual skill dysfunction (including binocular fusion and tracking ability) by a vision therapist at their school in Wisconsin. The therapist determined whether the student had adequate visual skills based on clinical and behavioral observations. A "remote" investigator located in California determined the adequacy of accommodative facility, tracking, and vergence skills in the same students, based on quantitative progress through the modules of an Internet-based computer orthoptics training program during 3 assessment sessions. The on-site therapist made 33 referrals for possible visual skills training (80%). The remote investigator made 25 referrals (61%), all of which were consistent with referrals made by the on-site therapist; thus, no false-positives occurred when using the remote assessment technique. The 8 additional referrals by the therapist were attributed to the ability to observe student behavior during assessment. Remote assessment of visual skills via an Internet orthoptics program may provide a simple means to detect visual skill problems experienced by poor readers.

  10. Visual aids improve diagnostic inferences and metacognitive judgment calibration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Retamero, Rocio; Cokely, Edward T; Hoffrage, Ulrich

    2015-01-01

    Visual aids can improve comprehension of risks associated with medical treatments, screenings, and lifestyles. Do visual aids also help decision makers accurately assess their risk comprehension? That is, do visual aids help them become well calibrated? To address these questions, we investigated the benefits of visual aids displaying numerical information and measured accuracy of self-assessment of diagnostic inferences (i.e., metacognitive judgment calibration) controlling for individual differences in numeracy. Participants included 108 patients who made diagnostic inferences about three medical tests on the basis of information about the sensitivity and false-positive rate of the tests and disease prevalence. Half of the patients received the information in numbers without a visual aid, while the other half received numbers along with a grid representing the numerical information. In the numerical condition, many patients-especially those with low numeracy-misinterpreted the predictive value of the tests and profoundly overestimated the accuracy of their inferences. Metacognitive judgment calibration mediated the relationship between numeracy and accuracy of diagnostic inferences. In contrast, in the visual aid condition, patients at all levels of numeracy showed high-levels of inferential accuracy and metacognitive judgment calibration. Results indicate that accurate metacognitive assessment may explain the beneficial effects of visual aids and numeracy-a result that accords with theory suggesting that metacognition is an essential part of risk literacy. We conclude that well-designed risk communications can inform patients about healthrelevant numerical information while helping them assess the quality of their own risk comprehension.

  11. Visual Aids Improve Diagnostic Inferences and Metacognitive Judgment Calibration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rocio eGarcia-Retamero

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Visual aids can improve comprehension of risks associated with medical treatments, screenings, and lifestyles. Do visual aids also help decision makers accurately assess their risk comprehension? That is, do visual aids help them become well calibrated? To address these questions, we investigated the benefits of visual aids displaying numerical information and measured accuracy of self-assessment of diagnostic inferences (i.e., metacognitive judgment calibration controlling for individual differences in numeracy. Participants included 108 patients who made diagnostic inferences about three medical tests on the basis of information about the sensitivity and false-positive rate of the tests and disease prevalence. Half of the patients received the information in numbers without a visual aid, while the other half received numbers along with a grid representing the numerical information. In the numerical condition, many patients --especially those with low numeracy-- misinterpreted the predictive value of the tests and profoundly overestimated the accuracy of their inferences. Metacognitive judgment calibration mediated the relationship between numeracy and accuracy of diagnostic inferences. In contrast, in the visual aid condition, patients at all levels of numeracy showed high-levels of inferential accuracy and metacognitive judgment calibration. Results indicate that accurate metacognitive assessment may explain the beneficial effects of visual aids and numeracy --a result that accords with theory suggesting that metacognition is an essential part of risk literacy. We conclude that well-designed risk communications can inform patients about health-relevant numerical information while helping them assess the quality of their own risk comprehension.

  12. In vitro Spatial Compound Scanning for Improved Visualization of Atherosclerosis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jespersen, Søren Kragh; Wilhjelm, Jens E.; Sillesen, Henrik

    2000-01-01

    A new off-line multiangle ultrasound (US) compound scanner has been built with the purpose of investigating possible improvements in visualization of vascular structure. Images of two formalin-fixed human atherosclerotic plaques removed by carotid endarterectomy were recorded from seven insonific......A new off-line multiangle ultrasound (US) compound scanner has been built with the purpose of investigating possible improvements in visualization of vascular structure. Images of two formalin-fixed human atherosclerotic plaques removed by carotid endarterectomy were recorded from seven...

  13. Improving the User Experience of Finding and Visualizing Oceanographic Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rauch, S.; Allison, M. D.; Groman, R. C.; Chandler, C. L.; Galvarino, C.; Gegg, S. R.; Kinkade, D.; Shepherd, A.; Wiebe, P. H.; Glover, D. M.

    2013-12-01

    Searching for and locating data of interest can be a challenge to researchers as increasing volumes of data are made available online through various data centers, repositories, and archives. The Biological and Chemical Oceanography Data Management Office (BCO-DMO) is keenly aware of this challenge and, as a result, has implemented features and technologies aimed at improving data discovery and enhancing the user experience. BCO-DMO was created in 2006 to manage and publish data from research projects funded by the Division of Ocean Sciences (OCE) Biological and Chemical Oceanography Sections and the Division of Polar Programs (PLR) Antarctic Sciences Organisms and Ecosystems Program (ANT) of the US National Science Foundation (NSF). The BCO-DMO text-based and geospatial-based data access systems provide users with tools to search, filter, and visualize data in order to efficiently find data of interest. The geospatial interface, developed using a suite of open-source software (including MapServer [1], OpenLayers [2], ExtJS [3], and MySQL [4]), allows users to search and filter/subset metadata based on program, project, or deployment, or by using a simple word search. The map responds based on user selections, presents options that allow the user to choose specific data parameters (e.g., a species or an individual drifter), and presents further options for visualizing those data on the map or in "quick-view" plots. The data managed and made available by BCO-DMO are very heterogeneous in nature, from in-situ biogeochemical, ecological, and physical data, to controlled laboratory experiments. Due to the heterogeneity of the data types, a 'one size fits all' approach to visualization cannot be applied. Datasets are visualized in a way that will best allow users to assess fitness for purpose. An advanced geospatial interface, which contains a semantically-enabled faceted search [5], is also available. These search facets are highly interactive and responsive, allowing

  14. The Effectiveness of Verbal Information Provided by Electronic Travel Aids for Visually Impaired Persons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Havik, Else M.; Kooijman, Aart C.; Steyvers, Frank J. J. M.

    2011-01-01

    The effectiveness of different types of verbal information provided by electronic travel aids was studied in a real-life setting. Assessments included wayfinding performance and the preferences of 24 visually impaired users. The participants preferred a combination of route information and environmental information, even though this information…

  15. The Effectiveness of Verbal Information Provided by Electronic Travel Aids for Visually Impaired Persons

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Havik, Else M.; Kooijman, Aart C.; Steyvers, Frank J. J. M.

    2011-01-01

    The effectiveness of different types of verbal information provided by electronic travel aids was studied in a real-life setting. Assessments included wayfinding performance and the preferences of 24 visually impaired users. The participants preferred a combination of route information and

  16. Perceptual Training Strongly Improves Visual Motion Perception in Schizophrenia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Norton, Daniel J.; McBain, Ryan K.; Ongur, Dost; Chen, Yue

    2011-01-01

    Schizophrenia patients exhibit perceptual and cognitive deficits, including in visual motion processing. Given that cognitive systems depend upon perceptual inputs, improving patients' perceptual abilities may be an effective means of cognitive intervention. In healthy people, motion perception can be enhanced through perceptual learning, but it…

  17. The Effects of Visual Information on Willingness to Pay for a Recreational Site Improvement in Chile

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arcadio A. Cerda

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available This article examines the effect of visual information on people’s willingness to pay (WTP for improvements to the infrastructure and water quality of an urban recreation site. We applied the contingent valuation methodology to two groups of people in the City of Talca, Chile. The control group received written information about improvements to be made to a recreational site, whereas the treated group received written and visual information. We found that people who were shown visual illustrations were willing to give more money to support the project than people who were not shown this additional information. We also found that, depending on respondent characteristics, the confidence interval of WTP was lower for people who were provided with visual illustrations than for those who were not. Additionally, users in the treated group were more likely to pay for improvements to be made and lower protest responses.

  18. Irregular Corneas: Improve Visual Function With Scleral Contact Lenses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Luis Eguileor, Beatriz; Etxebarria Ecenarro, Jaime; Santamaria Carro, Alaitz; Feijoo Lera, Raquel

    2016-10-20

    To assess visual function in patients with irregular cornea who do not tolerate gas permeable (GP) corneal contact lenses and are fitted with GP scleral contact lenses (Rose K2 XL). In this prospective study, we analyzed 15 eyes of 15 patients who did not tolerate GP corneal contact lenses and were fitted with scleral contact lenses (Rose K2 XL). We assessed visual function using visual acuity and the visual function index (VF-14); we used the VF-14 as an indicator of patient satisfaction. The measurements were taken with the optical correction used before and 1 month after the fitting of the Rose K2 XL contact lenses. We also recorded the number of hours lenses had been worn over the first month. Using Rose K2 XL contact lenses, visual acuity was 0.06±0.07 logMAR. In all cases, visual acuity had improved compared with the measurement before fitting the lenses (0.31±0.18 logMAR; P=0.001). VF-14 scores were 72.74±12.38 before fitting of the scleral lenses, and 89.31±10.87 after 1 month of lens use (P=0.003). Patients used these scleral lenses for 9.33±2.99 comfortable hours of wear. Both visual acuity and VF-14 may improve after fitting Rose K2 XL contact lenses in patients with irregular corneas. In addition, in our patients, these lenses can be worn for a longer period than GP corneal contact lenses.

  19. A New Visual Stimulation Program for Improving Visual Acuity in Children with Visual Impairment: A Pilot Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsai, Li-Ting; Hsu, Jung-Lung; Wu, Chien-Te; Chen, Chia-Ching; Su, Yu-Chin

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate the effectiveness of visual rehabilitation of a computer-based visual stimulation (VS) program combining checkerboard pattern reversal (passive stimulation) with oddball stimuli (attentional modulation) for improving the visual acuity (VA) of visually impaired (VI) children and children with amblyopia and additional developmental problems. Six children (three females, three males; mean age = 3.9 ± 2.3 years) with impaired VA caused by deficits along the anterior and/or posterior visual pathways were recruited. Participants received eight rounds of VS training (two rounds per week) of at least eight sessions per round. Each session consisted of stimulation with 200 or 300 pattern reversals. Assessments of VA (assessed with the Lea symbol VA test or Teller VA cards), visual evoked potential (VEP), and functional vision (assessed with the Chinese-version Functional Vision Questionnaire, FVQ) were carried out before and after the VS program. Significant gains in VA were found after the VS training [VA = 1.05 logMAR ± 0.80 to 0.61 logMAR ± 0.53, Z = -2.20, asymptotic significance (2-tailed) = 0.028]. No significant changes were observed in the FVQ assessment [92.8 ± 12.6 to 100.8 ±SD = 15.4, Z = -1.46, asymptotic significance (2-tailed) = 0.144]. VEP measurement showed improvement in P100 latency and amplitude or integration of the waveform in two participants. Our results indicate that a computer-based VS program with passive checkerboard stimulation, oddball stimulus design, and interesting auditory feedback could be considered as a potential intervention option to improve the VA of a wide age range of VI children and children with impaired VA combined with other neurological disorders.

  20. A new visual stimulation program for improving visual acuity in children with visual impairment: a pilot study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li-Ting eTsai

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of this study was to investigate the effectiveness of visual rehabilitation of a computer-based visual stimulation (VS program combining checkerboard pattern reversal (passive stimulation with oddball stimuli (attentional modulation for improving the visual acuity (VA of visually impaired (VI children and children with amblyopia and additional developmental problems. Six children (3 females, 3 males; mean age = 3.9 ± 2.3 years with impaired VA caused by deficits along the anterior and/or posterior visual pathways were recruited. Participants received eight rounds of VS training (two rounds per week of at least 8 sessions per round. Each session consisted of stimulation with 200 or 300 pattern reversals. Assessments of VA (assessed with the Lea symbol VA test or Teller VA cards, visual evoked potential (VEP, and functional vision (assessed with the Chinese-version Functional Vision Questionnaire, FVQ were carried out before and after the VS program. Significant gains in VA were found after the VS training (VA=1.05 logMAR ± 0.80 to 0.61 logMAR ± 0.53, Z=-2.20, asymptotic significance (2-tailed =0.028. No significant changes were observed in the FVQ assessment (92.8 ± 12.6 to 100.8 ± SD=15.4, Z=-1.46, asymptotic significance (2-tailed = 0.144. VEP measurement showed improvement in P100 latency and amplitude or integration of the waveform in two participants. Our results indicate that a computer-based VS program with passive checkerboard stimulation, oddball stimulus design, and interesting auditory feedback could be considered as a potential intervention option to improve the VA of a wide age range of VI children and children with impaired VA combined with other neurological disorders.

  1. A New Visual Stimulation Program for Improving Visual Acuity in Children with Visual Impairment: A Pilot Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsai, Li-Ting; Hsu, Jung-Lung; Wu, Chien-Te; Chen, Chia-Ching; Su, Yu-Chin

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate the effectiveness of visual rehabilitation of a computer-based visual stimulation (VS) program combining checkerboard pattern reversal (passive stimulation) with oddball stimuli (attentional modulation) for improving the visual acuity (VA) of visually impaired (VI) children and children with amblyopia and additional developmental problems. Six children (three females, three males; mean age = 3.9 ± 2.3 years) with impaired VA caused by deficits along the anterior and/or posterior visual pathways were recruited. Participants received eight rounds of VS training (two rounds per week) of at least eight sessions per round. Each session consisted of stimulation with 200 or 300 pattern reversals. Assessments of VA (assessed with the Lea symbol VA test or Teller VA cards), visual evoked potential (VEP), and functional vision (assessed with the Chinese-version Functional Vision Questionnaire, FVQ) were carried out before and after the VS program. Significant gains in VA were found after the VS training [VA = 1.05 logMAR ± 0.80 to 0.61 logMAR ± 0.53, Z = –2.20, asymptotic significance (2-tailed) = 0.028]. No significant changes were observed in the FVQ assessment [92.8 ± 12.6 to 100.8 ±SD = 15.4, Z = –1.46, asymptotic significance (2-tailed) = 0.144]. VEP measurement showed improvement in P100 latency and amplitude or integration of the waveform in two participants. Our results indicate that a computer-based VS program with passive checkerboard stimulation, oddball stimulus design, and interesting auditory feedback could be considered as a potential intervention option to improve the VA of a wide age range of VI children and children with impaired VA combined with other neurological disorders. PMID:27148014

  2. Training visual imagery: Improvements of metacognition, but not imagery strength

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rosanne Lynn Rademaker

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Visual imagery has been closely linked to brain mechanisms involved in perception. Can visual imagery, like visual perception, improve by means of training? Previous research has demonstrated that people can reliably evaluate the vividness of single episodes of sensory imagination – might the metacognition of imagery also improve over the course of training? We had participants imagine colored Gabor patterns for an hour a day, over the course of five consecutive days, and again two weeks after training. Participants rated the subjective vividness and effort of their mental imagery on each trial. The influence of imagery on subsequent binocular rivalry dominance was taken as our measure of imagery strength. We found no overall effect of training on imagery strength. Training did, however, improve participant’s metacognition of imagery. Trial-by-trial ratings of vividness gained predictive power on subsequent rivalry dominance as a function of training. These data suggest that, while imagery strength might be immune to training in the current context, people’s metacognitive understanding of mental imagery can improve with practice.

  3. Human eye visual hyperacuity: Controlled diffraction for image resolution improvement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lagunas, A.; Domínguez, O.; Martinez-Conde, S.; Macknik, S. L.; Del-Río, C.

    2017-09-01

    The Human Visual System appears to be using a low number of sensors for image capturing, and furthermore, regarding the physical dimensions of cones—photoreceptors responsible for the sharp central vision—we may realize that these sensors are of a relatively small size and area. Nonetheless, the human eye is capable of resolving fine details thanks to visual hyperacuity and presents an impressive sensitivity and dynamic range when set against conventional digital cameras of similar characteristics. This article is based on the hypothesis that the human eye may be benefiting from diffraction to improve both image resolution and acquisition process. The developed method involves the introduction of a controlled diffraction pattern at an initial stage that enables the use of a limited number of sensors for capturing the image and makes possible a subsequent post-processing to improve the final image resolution.

  4. Real-time computer-based visual feedback improves visual acuity in downbeat nystagmus - a pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teufel, Julian; Bardins, S; Spiegel, Rainer; Kremmyda, O; Schneider, E; Strupp, M; Kalla, R

    2016-01-04

    Patients with downbeat nystagmus syndrome suffer from oscillopsia, which leads to an unstable visual perception and therefore impaired visual acuity. The aim of this study was to use real-time computer-based visual feedback to compensate for the destabilizing slow phase eye movements. The patients were sitting in front of a computer screen with the head fixed on a chin rest. The eye movements were recorded by an eye tracking system (EyeSeeCam®). We tested the visual acuity with a fixed Landolt C (static) and during real-time feedback driven condition (dynamic) in gaze straight ahead and (20°) sideward gaze. In the dynamic condition, the Landolt C moved according to the slow phase eye velocity of the downbeat nystagmus. The Shapiro-Wilk test was used to test for normal distribution and one-way ANOVA for comparison. Ten patients with downbeat nystagmus were included in the study. Median age was 76 years and the median duration of symptoms was 6.3 years (SD +/- 3.1y). The mean slow phase velocity was moderate during gaze straight ahead (1.44°/s, SD +/- 1.18°/s) and increased significantly in sideward gaze (mean left 3.36°/s; right 3.58°/s). In gaze straight ahead, we found no difference between the static and feedback driven condition. In sideward gaze, visual acuity improved in five out of ten subjects during the feedback-driven condition (p = 0.043). This study provides proof of concept that non-invasive real-time computer-based visual feedback compensates for the SPV in DBN. Therefore, real-time visual feedback may be a promising aid for patients suffering from oscillopsia and impaired text reading on screen. Recent technological advances in the area of virtual reality displays might soon render this approach feasible in fully mobile settings.

  5. The efficacy of visual cues to improve hand hygiene compliance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nevo, Igal; Fitzpatrick, Maureen; Thomas, Ruth-Everett; Gluck, Paul A; Lenchus, Joshua D; Arheart, Kristopher L; Birnbach, David J

    2010-12-01

    Guidelines governing healthcare workers' (HCW) hand hygiene (HH) behavior are well established. Despite known hazards of healthcare-associated infection to both HCW and patients, hand hygiene compliance (HHC) rates remain dismally low. To evaluate a potential solution to this ongoing challenge, we used a simulated patient encounter in an actual hospital room to test the efficacy of individual HH triggers. One hundred fifty HCW (75 physicians and 75 nurses) participated in this study and were randomly assigned to one of five equal-size groups. Each participant performed a focused physical examination on a standardized patient and was expected to maintain HH before and after the examination. Using two rooms on a medical-surgical unit in a tertiary care teaching hospital, various cues were employed, and the impact on pre- and postexamination HHC was recorded. In the control group, the hand sanitizer dispenser was in its usual location (Baseline). In one group, the dispenser was relocated to direct line of sight (Line-of-Sight) on entering the room; in another, flashing lights were affixed to the dispenser in its usual location (Baseline & Flicker); and in a third group, the dispenser was relocated to the line of sight, and flashing lights were attached (Line-of-Sight & Flicker). In the last group, a large warning sign (Warning Sign) was affixed to the door, informing the healthcare provider that the room was under electronic surveillance, and failure to perform HHC would trigger an alarm. Data were analyzed using a generalized linear model to perform a repeated measures logistic regression; P<0.05 was considered statistically significant. In the control group (Baseline), pre- and postexamination HHC rates were 36.7% and 33.3%, respectively. All interventions improved HHC preintervention compared with baseline (Line-of-Sight=53.3%, Baseline & Flicker=60%, Line-of-Sight & Flicker=66%, Warning Sign=93.3%), but only the Line-of-Sight & Flicker and the Warning Sign

  6. Scientific advances provide opportunities to improve pediatric environmental health

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reddy, Michael M.; Reddy, Micaela B.; Reddy, Carol F.

    2004-01-01

    The health consequences of contaminants in the environment, with respect to the health of children and infants, recently have been dramatically brought to public attention by the motion pictures Erin Brockovich and A Civil Action. These productions focused public attention on the potential link between water contaminants and pediatric health, a continuing subject of public concern. As a consequence of the increasing production of new commercial chemicals, many chemicals have appeared in the scientific and public awareness as potential threats to health. These new or novel compounds eventually distribute in the environment and often are termed emerging contaminants. Gitterman and Bearer stated, "Children may serve as unwitting sentinels for society; they are often the youngest exposed to many environmental toxicants and may become the youngest in age to manifest adverse responses." The discipline of pediatric environmental health is still in its adolescence, but it will be increasingly important as new chemicals are generated and as more is learned about the health effects of chemicals already in commerce. Here, we provide an overview of recent advances in biomonitoring and environmental monitoring of environmental contaminants including emerging contaminants. Our purpose in writing this commentary is to make pediatricians aware of the current resources available for learning about pediatric environmental health and of ongoing research initiatives that provide opportunities to improve pediatric environmental health.

  7. Refreshing memory traces: thinking of an item improves retrieval from visual working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Souza, Alessandra S; Rerko, Laura; Oberauer, Klaus

    2015-03-01

    This article provides evidence that refreshing, a hypothetical attention-based process operating in working memory (WM), improves the accessibility of visual representations for recall. "Thinking of", one of several concurrently active representations, is assumed to refresh its trace in WM, protecting the representation from being forgotten. The link between refreshing and WM performance, however, has only been tenuously supported by empirical evidence. Here, we controlled which and how often individual items were refreshed in a color reconstruction task by presenting cues prompting participants to think of specific WM items during the retention interval. We show that the frequency with which an item is refreshed improves recall of this item from visual WM. Our study establishes a role of refreshing in recall from visual WM and provides a new method for studying the impact of refreshing on the amount of information we can keep accessible for ongoing cognition. © 2014 New York Academy of Sciences.

  8. Formal art observation training improves medical students' visual diagnostic skills.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naghshineh, Sheila; Hafler, Janet P; Miller, Alexa R; Blanco, Maria A; Lipsitz, Stuart R; Dubroff, Rachel P; Khoshbin, Shahram; Katz, Joel T

    2008-07-01

    Despite evidence of inadequate physical examination skills among medical students, teaching these skills has declined. One method of enhancing inspection skills is teaching "visual literacy," the ability to reason physiology and pathophysiology from careful and unbiased observation. To improve students' visual acumen through structured observation of artworks, understanding of fine arts concepts and applying these skills to patient care. Prospective, partially randomized pre- vs. post-course evaluation using mixed-methods data analysis. Twenty-four pre-clinical student participants were compared to 34 classmates at a similar stage of training. Training the Eye: Improving the Art of Physical Diagnosis consists of eight paired sessions of art observation exercises with didactics that integrate fine arts concepts with physical diagnosis topics and an elective life drawing session. The frequency of accurate observations on a 1-h visual skills examination was used to evaluate pre- vs. post-course descriptions of patient photographs and art imagery. Content analysis was used to identify thematic categories. All assessments were blinded to study group and pre- vs. post-course evaluation. Following the course, class participants increased their total mean number of observations compared to controls (5.41 +/- 0.63 vs. 0.36 +/- 0.53, p art and physical findings.

  9. Navigating through virtual environments: visual realism improves spatial cognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meijer, Frank; Geudeke, Branko L; van den Broek, Egon L

    2009-10-01

    Recent advances in computer technology have significantly facilitated the use of virtual environments (VE) for small and medium enterprises (SME). However, achieving visual realism in such VE requires high investments in terms of time and effort, while its usefulness has not yet become apparent from research. Other qualities of VE, such as the use of large displays, proved its effectiveness in enhancing the individual user's spatial cognition. The current study assessed whether the same benefits apply for visual realism in VE. Thirty-two participants were divided into two groups, who explored either a photorealistic or a nonrealistic supermarket presented on a large screen. The participants were asked to navigate through the supermarket on a predetermined route. Subsequently, spatial learning was tested in four pen-and-paper tests that assessed how accurately they had memorized the route and the environment's spatial layout. The study revealed increased spatial learning from the photorealistic compared to the nonrealistic supermarket. Specifically, participants performed better on tests that involved egocentric spatial knowledge. The results suggest visual realism is useful because it increases the user's spatial knowledge in the VE. Therefore, the current study provides clear evidence that it is worthwhile for SME to invest in achieving visual realism in VE.

  10. Visual attention distracter insertion for improved EEG rapid serial visual presentation (RSVP) target stimuli detection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khosla, Deepak; Huber, David J.; Martin, Kevin

    2017-05-01

    This paper† describes a technique in which we improve upon the prior performance of the Rapid Serial Visual Presentation (RSVP) EEG paradigm for image classification though the insertion of visual attention distracters and overall sequence reordering based upon the expected ratio of rare to common "events" in the environment and operational context. Inserting distracter images maintains the ratio of common events to rare events at an ideal level, maximizing the rare event detection via P300 EEG response to the RSVP stimuli. The method has two steps: first, we compute the optimal number of distracters needed for an RSVP stimuli based on the desired sequence length and expected number of targets and insert the distracters into the RSVP sequence, and then we reorder the RSVP sequence to maximize P300 detection. We show that by reducing the ratio of target events to nontarget events using this method, we can allow RSVP sequences with more targets without sacrificing area under the ROC curve (azimuth).

  11. Assessment and improvement of figures to visually convey benefit and risk of stroke thrombolysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gadhia, Jigneshkumar; Starkman, Sidney; Ovbiagele, Bruce; Ali, Latisha; Liebeskind, David; Saver, Jeffrey L

    2010-02-01

    Deciding whether to use intravenous fibrinolytic therapy for acute cerebral ischemia within 3 hours of onset is challenging for patients, family members, and health care providers. Visual displays can permit individuals to rapidly understand response patterns to therapy. This study sought to evaluate, refine, and improve existing visual aids for stroke fibrinolytic decision-making. Existing visual aids were identified by Medline search and querying of national guideline organizations, pharmaceutical manufacturers, and stroke specialists, and were rated on a formal 8-point quality rating scale (0, lowest; 8, highest). Based on available instruments, new visual displays were developed to improve informed decision-making in routine practice. Two existing visual aids were identified, one from an emergency medicine society and one from a pharmaceutical company. Both were comparison visual displays of outcomes with and without treatment; no decision matrix visual aid was found. Both scored 4.0 on the quality scale, showing defects of effect size distortion, privileging less salient outcomes, dissimilar representation by treatment group, and limited stakeholder participation in generation. Revised versions of these graphics were developed with higher quality scores (6.75 and 7.75). In addition, a new decision matrix display with quality score 8.0 was developed that complements the numeric text of a national patient education tool developed jointly by US neurology, emergency medicine, and stroke patient organizations. Existing visual aids for stroke fibrinolysis decision-making have deficiencies. New visual displays are now available to convey the health benefits and risks of fibrinolytic stroke therapy efficiently and informatively to patients and family members.

  12. Formal Art Observation Training Improves Medical Students’ Visual Diagnostic Skills

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naghshineh, Sheila; Hafler, Janet P.; Miller, Alexa R.; Blanco, Maria A.; Lipsitz, Stuart R.; Dubroff, Rachel P.; Khoshbin, Shahram

    2008-01-01

    Background Despite evidence of inadequate physical examination skills among medical students, teaching these skills has declined. One method of enhancing inspection skills is teaching “visual literacy,” the ability to reason physiology and pathophysiology from careful and unbiased observation. Objective To improve students’ visual acumen through structured observation of artworks, understanding of fine arts concepts and applying these skills to patient care. Design Prospective, partially randomized pre- vs. post-course evaluation using mixed-methods data analysis. Participants Twenty-four pre-clinical student participants were compared to 34 classmates at a similar stage of training. Intervention Training the Eye: Improving the Art of Physical Diagnosis consists of eight paired sessions of art observation exercises with didactics that integrate fine arts concepts with physical diagnosis topics and an elective life drawing session. Measurements The frequency of accurate observations on a 1-h visual skills examination was used to evaluate pre- vs. post-course descriptions of patient photographs and art imagery. Content analysis was used to identify thematic categories. All assessments were blinded to study group and pre- vs. post-course evaluation. Results Following the course, class participants increased their total mean number of observations compared to controls (5.41 ± 0.63 vs. 0.36 ± 0.53, p interdisciplinary course improved participants’ capacity to make accurate observations of art and physical findings. Electronic supplementary material The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s11606-008-0667-0) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users. PMID:18612730

  13. A lightweight augmented virtuality system for providing a faithful and spatially manipulable visual hand representation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pusch, Andreas; Martin, Olivier; Coquillart, Sabine

    2011-01-01

    This paper introduces the technical foundations of a system designed to embed a lightweight, faithful and spatially manipulable representation of the user's hand into an otherwise virtual world - Augmented Virtuality (AV). A highly intuitive control during pointing-like near space interaction can be provided to the user, as well as a very flexible means to experimenters, in a variety of non-medical and medical contexts. Our approach essentially relies on stereoscopic video see-through Augmented Reality (AR) technology and a generic, extendible framework for managing 3-D visual hand displacements. Research from human-computer interaction, perception and motor control has contributed to the elaboration of our proposal which combines a) acting in co-location, b) avoiding occlusion violations by assuring a correct scene depth ordering and c) providing a convincing visual feedback of the user's hand. We further present two cases in which this system has already successfully been used and then outline some other applications that we think are promising, for instance, in the fields of neuromotor rehabilitation and experimental neuroscience.

  14. Treating visual speech perception to improve speech production in nonfluent aphasia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fridriksson, Julius; Baker, Julie M; Whiteside, Janet; Eoute, David; Moser, Dana; Vesselinov, Roumen; Rorden, Chris

    2009-03-01

    Several recent studies have revealed modulation of the left frontal lobe speech areas not only during speech production but also for speech perception. Crucially, the frontal lobe areas highlighted in these studies are the same ones that are involved in nonfluent aphasia. Based on these findings, this study examined the utility of targeting visual speech perception to improve speech production in nonfluent aphasia. Ten patients with chronic nonfluent aphasia underwent computerized language treatment utilizing picture-word matching. To examine the effect of visual speech perception on picture naming, 2 treatment phases were compared-one that included matching pictures to heard words and another in which pictures were matched to heard words accompanied by a video of the speaker's mouth presented on the computer screen. The results revealed significantly improved picture naming of both trained and untrained items after treatment when it included a visual speech component (ie, seeing the speaker's mouth). In contrast, the treatment phase in which pictures were only matched to heard words did not result in statistically significant improvement of picture naming. The findings suggest that focusing on visual speech perception can significantly improve speech production in nonfluent aphasia and may provide an alternative approach to treat a disorder in which speech production seldom improves much in the chronic phase of stroke.

  15. Contralateral delay activity provides a neural measure of the number of representations in visual working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ikkai, Akiko; McCollough, Andrew W; Vogel, Edward K

    2010-04-01

    Visual working memory (VWM) helps to temporarily represent information from the visual environment and is severely limited in capacity. Recent work has linked various forms of neural activity to the ongoing representations in VWM. One piece of evidence comes from human event-related potential studies, which find a sustained contralateral negativity during the retention period of VWM tasks. This contralateral delay activity (CDA) has previously been shown to increase in amplitude as the number of memory items increases, up to the individual's working memory capacity limit. However, significant alternative hypotheses remain regarding the true nature of this activity. Here we test whether the CDA is modulated by the perceptual requirements of the memory items as well as whether it is determined by the number of locations that are being attended within the display. Our results provide evidence against these two alternative accounts and instead strongly support the interpretation that this activity reflects the current number of objects that are being represented in VWM.

  16. Provide good air quality for people and improve their productivity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fanger, Povl Ole

    2000-01-01

    Three recent independent studies have documented that the quality of indoor air has a significant and positive influence on the productivity of office workers. A combined analysis of the results of the three studies shows a significant relationship between productivity and perceived indoor air...... quality. The impact on productivity justifies a much higher indoor air quality than the minimum levels prescribed in present standards and guidelines. One way of providing air of high quality for people to breathe, without involving excessive ventilation rates and energy use, is to provide "personalized...

  17. Physical Activity at Daycare: Childcare Providers' Perspectives for Improvements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tucker, Patricia; van Zandvoort, Melissa M.; Burke, Shauna M.; Irwin, Jennifer D.

    2011-01-01

    In London, Ontario, approximately 45 percent of preschoolers are insufficiently active.With the large number of preschoolers who attend childcare (54%), and the low levels of physical activity among preschool-aged children, daycare centers may be an appropriate avenue to intervene. This study sought to collect childcare providers' suggestions for…

  18. Improved Collaborative Transport Planning at Dutch Logistics Service Provider Fritom

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Buijs, Paul; Lopez Alvarez, Jose Alejandro; Veenstra, Marjolein; Roodbergen, Kees Jan

    2016-01-01

    We study the collaborative transport planning for two autonomous business units of Fritom, a Dutch logistics service provider. This difficult planning problem does not fit any existing type of vehicle routing problem proposed in the academic literature; therefore, we define a new problem class, the

  19. A management framework for training providers to improve skills ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    South Africa is in a skills revolution, launched by the Department of Labour via the Skills Development Act in 1998 and the Skills Development Levies Act in 1999. The skills revolution challenges workplace training providers through employers who pay a percentage of payroll towards skills levies and want to recover these ...

  20. How Chinese Semantics Capability Improves Interpretation in Visual Communication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Chu-Yu; Ou, Yang-Kun; Kin, Ching-Lung

    2017-01-01

    A visual representation involves delivering messages through visually communicated images. The study assumed that semantic recognition can affect visual interpretation ability, and the result showed that students graduating from a general high school achieve satisfactory results in semantic recognition and image interpretation tasks than students…

  1. Visual interfaces as an approach for providing mobile services and mobile content to low literate users in South Africa

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Matyila, M

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available in the related mobile applications. Exploring typical challenges experienced by low literate users and adapting these mobile applications using visual interfaces can provide low literate users with usable access to mobile services and mobile content....

  2. Improving modified tardieu scale assessment using inertial measurement unit with visual biofeedback.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seoyoung Choi; Jonghyun Kim

    2016-08-01

    Reliable spasticity assessment is important to provide appropriate intervention for spasticity. Modified Tardieu scale (MTS) assessment is simple and convenient enough to be used in clinical environment, but has poor or moderate reliability due to irregular passive stretch velocity and goniometric measurement. We proposed a novel inertial measurement unit (IMU)-based MTS assessment with gyroscope-based visual biofeedback to improve the reliability of MTS by providing regular passive stretch velocity. With five children with cerebral palsy and two raters, the IMU-based MTS assessment was compared with conventional MTS assessment. The results showed that the proposed one has good test-retest and inter-rater reliabilities (ICC > .08) while the conventional MTS has poor or moderate reliability. Moreover, it was shown that the proposed visual biofeedback is effective enough to provide regular passive stretch velocity.

  3. Information provided by diagnostic and screening tests: improving probabilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weatherall, Mark

    2017-11-13

    Uncertainty in clinical encounters is inevitable and despite this uncertainty clinicians must still work with patients to make diagnostic and treatment decisions. Explicit diagnostic reasoning based on probabilities will optimise information in relation to uncertainty. In clinical diagnostic encounters, there is often pre-existing information that reflects the probability any particular patient has a disease. Diagnostic testing provides extra information that refines diagnostic probabilities. However, in general diagnostic tests will be positive in most, but not all cases of disease (sensitivity) and may not be negative in all cases of disease absence (specificity). Bayes rule is an arithmetic method of using diagnostic testing information to refine diagnostic probabilities. In this method, when probabilities are converted to odds, multiplication of the odds of disease before diagnostic testing, by the positive likelihood ratio (LR+), the sensitivity of a test divided by 1 minus the specificity refines the probability of a particular diagnosis. Similar arithmetic applies to the probability of not having a disease, where the negative likelihood ratio is the specificity divided by 1 minus the sensitivity. A useful diagnostic test is one where the LR+ is greater than 5-10. This can be clarified by creating a contingency table for hypothetical groups of patients in relation to true disease prevalence and test performance predicted by sensitivity and specificity. Most screening tests in populations with a low prevalence of disease have a very high ratio of false positive results to true positive results, which can also be illustrated by contingency tables. © Article author(s) (or their employer(s) unless otherwise stated in the text of the article) 2017. All rights reserved. No commercial use is permitted unless otherwise expressly granted.

  4. Simulatedin vivoElectrophysiology Experiments Provide Previously Inaccessible Insights into Visual Physiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quiroga, Maria; Price, Nicholas SC

    2016-01-01

    Lecture content and practical laboratory classes are ideally complementary. However, the types of experiments that have led to our detailed understanding of sensory neuroscience are often not amenable to classroom experimentation as they require expensive equipment, time-consuming surgeries, specialized experimental techniques, and the use of animals. While sometimes feasible in small group teaching, these experiments are not suitable for large cohorts of students. Previous attempts to expose students to sensory neuroscience experiments include: the use of electrophysiology preparations in invertebrates, data-driven simulations that do not replicate the experience of conducting an experiment, or simply observing an experiment in a research laboratory. We developed an online simulation of a visual neuroscience experiment in which extracellular recordings are made from a motion sensitive neuron. Students have control over stimulation parameters (direction and contrast) and can see and hear the action potential responses to stimuli as they are presented. The simulation provides an intuitive way for students to gain insight into neurophysiology, including experimental design, data collection and data analysis. Our simulation allows large cohorts of students to cost-effectively "experience" the results of animal research without ethical concerns, to be exposed to realistic data variability, and to develop their understanding of how sensory neuroscience experiments are conducted.

  5. Web-based instrument to assess skills in visual inspection of the cervix among healthcare providers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Negulescu, Raluca-Anca; Catarino, Rosa; De Vuyst, Hugo; Undurraga-Malinverno, Manuela; Meyer-Hamme, Ulrike; Alec, Milena; Campana, Aldo; Vassilakos, Pierre; Petignat, Patrick

    2016-07-01

    To validate a web-based instrument for assessing healthcare providers' skills in visual inspection with acetic acid or Lugol iodine (VIA/VILI) for the diagnosis and management of cervical intraepithelial neoplasia. An observational cross-sectional study enrolled healthcare providers in a web-based assessment of VIA/VILI skills between August and November 2014. Participants participated in a four-module training course, followed by a multiple-choice test with 70 questions based on cervical photographs of HPV-positive women participating in cervical screening. Logistic regression was used to identify relationships between independent variables and success on the test. Overall, 255 participants completed the test and 99 (38.8%) passed. No correlation was found between age or sex and test performance. Compared with other healthcare workers, physicians (odds ratio [OR] 1.91, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.01-3.63; P=0.048), and participants with more colposcopy experience (OR 3.62, 95% CI 1.91-6.85; P<0.001) and postgraduate VIA/VILI training (OR 1.95, 95% CI 1.16-3.29; P=0.012) were more likely to pass the test. Participants who repeated the test (31/255 [12.2%]) were five times more likely to succeed on their second repeat (OR 5.89, 95% CI 1.46-23.73; P=0.013). Web-based training for VIA/VILI is feasible and can identify healthcare workers who are proficient in this technique. Copyright © 2016 International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Improving Communication During Cardiac ICU Multidisciplinary Rounds Through Visual Display of Patient Daily Goals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Justice, Lindsey B; Cooper, David S; Henderson, Carla; Brown, James; Simon, Katherine; Clark, Lindsey; Fleckenstein, Elizabeth; Benscoter, Alexis; Nelson, David P

    2016-07-01

    To improve communication during daily cardiac ICU multidisciplinary rounds. Quality improvement methodology. Twenty-five-bed cardiac ICUs in an academic free-standing pediatric hospital. All patients admitted to the cardiac ICU. Implementation of visual display of patient daily goals through a write-down and read-back process. The Rounds Effectiveness Assessment and Communication Tool was developed based on the previously validated Patient Knowledge Assessment Tool to evaluate comprehension of patient daily goals. Rounds were assessed for each patient by the bedside nurse, nurse practitioner or fellow, and attending physician, and answers were compared to determine percent agreement per day. At baseline, percent agreement for patient goals was only 62%. After initial implementation of the daily goal write-down/read-back process, which was written on paper by the bedside nurse, the Rounds Effectiveness Assessment and Communication Tool survey revealed no improvement. With adaptation of the intervention so goals were written on whiteboards for visual display during rounds, the percent agreement improved to 85%. Families were also asked to complete a survey (1-6 Likert scale) of their satisfaction with rounds and understanding of daily goals before and after the intervention. Family survey results improved from a mean of 4.6-5.7. Parent selection of the best possible score for each question was 19% at baseline and 75% after the intervention. Visual display of patient daily goals via a write-down/read-back process improves comprehension of goals by all team members and improves parent satisfaction. The daily goal whiteboard facilitates consistent development of a comprehensive plan of care for each patient, fosters goal-directed care, and provides a checklist for providers and parents to review throughout the day.

  7. Improvement in Visual Target Tracking for a Mobile Robot

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Won; Ansar, Adnan; Madison, Richard

    2006-01-01

    In an improvement of the visual-target-tracking software used aboard a mobile robot (rover) of the type used to explore the Martian surface, an affine-matching algorithm has been replaced by a combination of a normalized- cross-correlation (NCC) algorithm and a template-image-magnification algorithm. Although neither NCC nor template-image magnification is new, the use of both of them to increase the degree of reliability with which features can be matched is new. In operation, a template image of a target is obtained from a previous rover position, then the magnification of the template image is based on the estimated change in the target distance from the previous rover position to the current rover position (see figure). For this purpose, the target distance at the previous rover position is determined by stereoscopy, while the target distance at the current rover position is calculated from an estimate of the current pose of the rover. The template image is then magnified by an amount corresponding to the estimated target distance to obtain a best template image to match with the image acquired at the current rover position.

  8. Can Visualizing Document Space Improve Users' Information Foraging?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Min

    1998-01-01

    This study shows how users access relevant information in a visualized document space and determine whether BiblioMapper, a visualization tool, strengthens an information retrieval (IR) system and makes it more usable. BiblioMapper, developed for a CISI collection, was evaluated by accuracy, time, and user satisfaction. Users' navigation…

  9. Audio-visual feedback improves the BCI performance in the navigational control of a humanoid robot.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tidoni, Emmanuele; Gergondet, Pierre; Kheddar, Abderrahmane; Aglioti, Salvatore M

    2014-01-01

    Advancement in brain computer interfaces (BCI) technology allows people to actively interact in the world through surrogates. Controlling real humanoid robots using BCI as intuitively as we control our body represents a challenge for current research in robotics and neuroscience. In order to successfully interact with the environment the brain integrates multiple sensory cues to form a coherent representation of the world. Cognitive neuroscience studies demonstrate that multisensory integration may imply a gain with respect to a single modality and ultimately improve the overall sensorimotor performance. For example, reactivity to simultaneous visual and auditory stimuli may be higher than to the sum of the same stimuli delivered in isolation or in temporal sequence. Yet, knowledge about whether audio-visual integration may improve the control of a surrogate is meager. To explore this issue, we provided human footstep sounds as audio feedback to BCI users while controlling a humanoid robot. Participants were asked to steer their robot surrogate and perform a pick-and-place task through BCI-SSVEPs. We found that audio-visual synchrony between footsteps sound and actual humanoid's walk reduces the time required for steering the robot. Thus, auditory feedback congruent with the humanoid actions may improve motor decisions of the BCI's user and help in the feeling of control over it. Our results shed light on the possibility to increase robot's control through the combination of multisensory feedback to a BCI user.

  10. Audio-visual feedback improves the BCI performance in the navigational control of a humanoid robot

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emmanuele eTidoni

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Advancement in brain computer interfaces (BCI technology allows people to actively interact in the world through surrogates. Controlling real humanoid robots using BCI as intuitively as we control our body represents a challenge for current research in robotics and neuroscience. In order to successfully interact with the environment the brain integrates multiple sensory cues to form a coherent representation of the world. Cognitive neuroscience studies demonstrate that multisensory integration may imply a gain with respect to a single modality and ultimately improve the overall sensorimotor performance. For example, reactivity to simultaneous visual and auditory stimuli may be higher than to the sum of the same stimuli delivered in isolation or in temporal sequence. Yet, knowledge about whether audio-visual integration may improve the control of a surrogate is meager. To explore this issue, we provided human footstep sounds as audio feedback to BCI users while controlling a humanoid robot. Participants were asked to steer their robot surrogate and perform a pick-and-place task through BCI-SSVEPs. We found that audio-visual synchrony between footsteps sound and actual humanoid’s walk reduces the time required for steering the robot. Thus, auditory feedback congruent with the humanoid actions may improve motor decisions of the BCI’s user and help in the feeling of control over it. Our results shed light on the possibility to increase robot’s control through the combination of multisensory feedback to a BCI user.

  11. Improving Pre-Service Teachers’ Visual Literacy through Online Photo-Sharing Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alaa Sadik

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available This study aims to investigate how pre-service teachers' visual literacy skills are affected by their use of online photo management and sharing applications like Flickr. Two approaches are used to develop the visual literacy skills of pre-service teachers through Flickr. The first is to help them decode visuals through practicing analysis techniques, and interpreting and creating meaning from visual stimuli. The second is to help them encode visuals as a tool for communication. Visual literacy tests, participants' logs, photograph evaluation instruments, and interviews are used to assess the improvement in the participants' visual literacy skills. The results of the analysis revealed that the pre-service teachers' skills in interpreting, understanding, and appreciating the meaning of visual messages were enhanced through online exchange and interaction by means of photo management and sharing applications. They were able to communicate more effectively through applying the basic principles and concepts of visual design.

  12. Automated Box-Cox Transformations for Improved Visual Encoding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maciejewski, Ross; Pattath, Avin; Ko, Sungahn; Hafen, Ryan; Cleveland, William S; Ebert, David S

    2013-01-01

    The concept of preconditioning data (utilizing a power transformation as an initial step) for analysis and visualization is well established within the statistical community and is employed as part of statistical modeling and analysis. Such transformations condition the data to various inherent assumptions of statistical inference procedures, as well as making the data more symmetric and easier to visualize and interpret. In this paper, we explore the use of the Box-Cox family of power transformations to semiautomatically adjust visual parameters. We focus on time-series scaling, axis transformations, and color binning for choropleth maps. We illustrate the usage of this transformation through various examples, and discuss the value and some issues in semiautomatically using these transformations for more effective data visualization.

  13. Models Provide Specificity: Testing a Proposed Mechanism of Visual Working Memory Capacity Development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simmering, Vanessa R.; Patterson, Rebecca

    2012-01-01

    Numerous studies have established that visual working memory has a limited capacity that increases during childhood. However, debate continues over the source of capacity limits and its developmental increase. Simmering (2008) adapted a computational model of spatial cognitive development, the Dynamic Field Theory, to explain not only the source…

  14. Hardware Implementation of a Spline-Based Genetic Algorithm for Embedded Stereo Vision Sensor Providing Real-Time Visual Guidance to the Visually Impaired

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James K. Archibald

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available Many image and signal processing techniques have been applied to medical and health care applications in recent years. In this paper, we present a robust signal processing approach that can be used to solve the correspondence problem for an embedded stereo vision sensor to provide real-time visual guidance to the visually impaired. This approach is based on our new one-dimensional (1D spline-based genetic algorithm to match signals. The algorithm processes image data lines as 1D signals to generate a dense disparity map, from which 3D information can be extracted. With recent advances in electronics technology, this 1D signal matching technique can be implemented and executed in parallel in hardware such as field-programmable gate arrays (FPGAs to provide real-time feedback about the environment to the user. In order to complement (not replace traditional aids for the visually impaired such as canes and Seeing Eyes dogs, vision systems that provide guidance to the visually impaired must be affordable, easy to use, compact, and free from attributes that are awkward or embarrassing to the user. “Seeing Eye Glasses,” an embedded stereo vision system utilizing our new algorithm, meets all these requirements.

  15. Hardware Implementation of a Spline-Based Genetic Algorithm for Embedded Stereo Vision Sensor Providing Real-Time Visual Guidance to the Visually Impaired

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Dah-Jye; Anderson, Jonathan D.; Archibald, James K.

    2008-12-01

    Many image and signal processing techniques have been applied to medical and health care applications in recent years. In this paper, we present a robust signal processing approach that can be used to solve the correspondence problem for an embedded stereo vision sensor to provide real-time visual guidance to the visually impaired. This approach is based on our new one-dimensional (1D) spline-based genetic algorithm to match signals. The algorithm processes image data lines as 1D signals to generate a dense disparity map, from which 3D information can be extracted. With recent advances in electronics technology, this 1D signal matching technique can be implemented and executed in parallel in hardware such as field-programmable gate arrays (FPGAs) to provide real-time feedback about the environment to the user. In order to complement (not replace) traditional aids for the visually impaired such as canes and Seeing Eyes dogs, vision systems that provide guidance to the visually impaired must be affordable, easy to use, compact, and free from attributes that are awkward or embarrassing to the user. "Seeing Eye Glasses," an embedded stereo vision system utilizing our new algorithm, meets all these requirements.

  16. Retrospective cues based on object features improve visual working memory performance in older adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilchrist, Amanda L; Duarte, Audrey; Verhaeghen, Paul

    2016-01-01

    Research with younger adults has shown that retrospective cues can be used to orient top-down attention toward relevant items in working memory. We examined whether older adults could take advantage of these cues to improve memory performance. Younger and older adults were presented with visual arrays of five colored shapes; during maintenance, participants were presented either with an informative cue based on an object feature (here, object shape or color) that would be probed, or with an uninformative, neutral cue. Although older adults were less accurate overall, both age groups benefited from the presentation of an informative, feature-based cue relative to a neutral cue. Surprisingly, we also observed differences in the effectiveness of shape versus color cues and their effects upon post-cue memory load. These results suggest that older adults can use top-down attention to remove irrelevant items from visual working memory, provided that task-relevant features function as cues.

  17. Improvement of reading speed after providing of low vision aids in patients with age-related macular degeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nguyen, Nhung Xuan; Weismann, Malte; Trauzettel-Klosinski, Susanne

    2009-11-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the most common cause of severe visual impairment, including loss of reading ability, among elderly persons in developed countries. The aim of the present study was to evaluate reading ability before and after providing of appropriate low vision aids. Five hundred and thirty patients with different stages of AMD (age 82 +/- 8 years) were included in this retrospective study. All patients underwent a standardized ophthalmological examination including evaluation of magnification requirement and careful providing of low vision aids. Before and after the provision of low vision aids, reading speed [words per minute (wpm)] was evaluated using standardized reading texts. For the whole group, the average best-corrected distance visual acuity of the better eye was 0.18 +/- 0.15, with 69% of patients having visual acuity of 0.1 (20/200) or better. The mean magnification requirement was 7.4 +/- 6.3-fold (range 2-25). Visual rehabilitation was achieved with optical visual aids in 58% of patients, whereas 42% of patients needed electronically closed-circuit TV systems. Mean reading speed was 20 +/- 33 wpm before and increased significantly to 72 +/- 35 (p reading speed before (0.4 +/- 3.8 versus 20 +/- 28 wpm, p reading speed compared to patients with visual acuity of 0.1 or better following rehabilitation (p read; in contrast, reading ability was achieved in 94% of patients after the provision of low vision aids for the whole group. Our results indicate the great value of low vision rehabilitation through adequate providing of vision aids for the improvement of reading ability, with a highly significant increase of reading speed without training of eccentric viewing in patients with retained central fixation. The prompt implementation of low vision aids in patients with macular degeneration will help them to maintain and regain their reading ability, which can lead to an increase in independence, communication, mental agility and

  18. D Web Visualization of Environmental Information - Integration of Heterogeneous Data Sources when Providing Navigation and Interaction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herman, L.; Řezník, T.

    2015-08-01

    3D information is essential for a number of applications used daily in various domains such as crisis management, energy management, urban planning, and cultural heritage, as well as pollution and noise mapping, etc. This paper is devoted to the issue of 3D modelling from the levels of buildings to cities. The theoretical sections comprise an analysis of cartographic principles for the 3D visualization of spatial data as well as a review of technologies and data formats used in the visualization of 3D models. Emphasis was placed on the verification of available web technologies; for example, X3DOM library was chosen for the implementation of a proof-of-concept web application. The created web application displays a 3D model of the city district of Nový Lískovec in Brno, the Czech Republic. The developed 3D visualization shows a terrain model, 3D buildings, noise pollution, and other related information. Attention was paid to the areas important for handling heterogeneous input data, the design of interactive functionality, and navigation assistants. The advantages, limitations, and future development of the proposed concept are discussed in the conclusions.

  19. Improved microcalcification visualization using dual-energy digital mammography

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tsai, Chia-Jung [Dept. of Medical Imaging and Radiological Sciences, Chung Shan Medical Univ., Taichung (Taiwan, Province of China); Chen, Ran-Chou [Dept. of Biomedical Imaging and Radiological Sciences, National Yang-Ming Univ., Taipei (Taiwan, Province of China); Dept. of Radiology, Taipei City Hospital, Taipei (Taiwan, Province of China); Peng, Hui-Ling [Dept. of Diagnostic Radiology, Shin Kong Wu Ho-Su Memorial Hospital, Taipei (Taiwan, Province of China); Hsu, Wen-Lin [School of Medicine, Tzu-Chi Univ., Hualien (Taiwan, Province of China); Dept. of Radiation Oncology, Buddhist Tzu-Chi General Hospital, Hualien (Taiwan, Province of China); Lee, Jason JS [Dept. of Biomedical Imaging and Radiological Sciences, National Yang-Ming Univ., Taipei (Taiwan, Province of China)], e-mail: jslee@ym.edu.tw, hwl@tzuchi.com.tw

    2013-07-15

    Background: Dual-energy digital mammography (DEDM), involving a combination of high-energy (HE) and low-energy (LE) images, has been investigated as offering a potential improvement in microcalcification detection obscured by overlapping tissue structures. Purpose: To explore the possibility to improve detection of microcalcifications using the DEDM technique. Material and Methods: Three DEDM protocols were performed by adjusting the effective tube current time product (mAs) of LE image at the same (100%), one half (50%), and one-quarter (25%) of that used in HE image acquisition, named DEDM{sub 100%}, DEDM{sub 50%}, and DEDM{sub 25%}, respectively. A single-energy digital mammography (SEDM) method was also used as a control. A total of 525 regions of interest (ROIs) were used to compare the performance of the DEDM to that of SEDM using free-response receiver-operating characteristic (FROC) and areas under the FROC curve (A{sub z}). Results: All DEDM protocols ranked significantly higher than the SEDM method (P < 0.001). The true-positive fraction was 0.90 for an average of 0.017 - 0.042 false-positive per image using the DEDM{sub 100%}, 0.017 - 0.114 using the DEDM{sub 50%}, 0.021 - 0.148 using the DEDM{sub 25%}, and 0.134 - 0.422 using the SEDM. The estimated A{sub z} values were 0.915 - 0.940, 0.867 - 0.935, 0.824 - 0.930, and 0.567 - 0.673, respectively. Conclusion: The DEDM{sub 50%} protocol provided a trade-off benefit between accurate microcalcification detectability and radiation dose for any tissue density. Therefore, the DEDM{sub 50%} has the potential to minimize excess radiation dose without a negative impact on image quality which could improve earlier diagnosis of breast cancer.

  20. Disposable platform provides visual and color-based point-of-care anemia self-testing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tyburski, Erika A; Gillespie, Scott E; Stoy, William A; Mannino, Robert G; Weiss, Alexander J; Siu, Alexa F; Bulloch, Rayford H; Thota, Karthik; Cardenas, Anyela; Session, Wilena; Khoury, Hanna J; O'Connor, Siobhán; Bunting, Silvia T; Boudreaux, Jeanne; Forest, Craig R; Gaddh, Manila; Leong, Traci; Lyon, L Andrew; Lam, Wilbur A

    2014-10-01

    Anemia, or low blood hemoglobin (Hgb) levels, afflicts 2 billion people worldwide. Currently, Hgb levels are typically measured from blood samples using hematology analyzers, which are housed in hospitals, clinics, or commercial laboratories and require skilled technicians to operate. A reliable, inexpensive point-of-care (POC) Hgb test would enable cost-effective anemia screening and chronically anemic patients to self-monitor their disease. We present a rapid, stand-alone, and disposable POC anemia test that, via a single drop of blood, outputs color-based visual results that correlate with Hgb levels. We tested blood from 238 pediatric and adult patients with anemia of varying degrees and etiologies and compared hematology analyzer Hgb levels with POC Hgb levels, which were estimated via visual interpretation using a color scale and an optional smartphone app for automated analysis. POC Hgb levels correlated with hematology analyzer Hgb levels (r = 0.864 and r = 0.856 for visual interpretation and smartphone app, respectively), and both POC test methods yielded comparable sensitivity and specificity for detecting any anemia (n = 178) (<11 g/dl) (sensitivity: 90.2% and 91.1%, specificity: 83.7% and 79.2%, respectively) and severe anemia (n = 10) (<7 g/dl) (sensitivity: 90.0% and 100%, specificity: 94.6% and 93.9%, respectively). These results demonstrate the feasibility of this POC color-based diagnostic test for self-screening/self-monitoring of anemia. Not applicable. This work was funded by the FDA-funded Atlantic Pediatric Device Consortium, the Georgia Research Alliance, Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, the Georgia Center of Innovation for Manufacturing, and the InVenture Prize and Ideas to Serve competitions at the Georgia Institute of Technology.

  1. Task-specific visual cues for improving process model understanding

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Petrusel, Razvan; Mendling, Jan; Reijers, Hajo A.

    2016-01-01

    Context Business process models support various stakeholders in managing business processes and designing process-aware information systems. In order to make effective use of these models, they have to be readily understandable. Objective Prior research has emphasized the potential of visual cues to

  2. Improving user-friendliness by using visually supported speech recognition

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Waals, J.A.J.S.; Kooi, F.L.; Kriekaard, J.J.

    2002-01-01

    While speech recognition in principle may be one of the most natural interfaces, in practice it is not due to the lack of user-friendliness. Words are regularly interpreted wrong, and subjects tend to articulate in an exaggerated manner. We explored the potential of visually supported error

  3. Pip and Pop: Nonspatial Auditory Signals Improve Spatial Visual Search

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van der Burg, Erik; Olivers, Christian N. L.; Bronkhorst, Adelbert W.; Theeuwes, Jan

    2008-01-01

    Searching for an object within a cluttered, continuously changing environment can be a very time-consuming process. The authors show that a simple auditory pip drastically decreases search times for a synchronized visual object that is normally very difficult to find. This effect occurs even though the pip contains no information on the location…

  4. Navigating through virtual environments: visual realism improves spatial cognition

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Meijer, F.; Geudeke, Branko L.; van den Broek, Egon

    2009-01-01

    Recent advances in computer technology have significantly facilitated the use of virtual environments (VE) for small and medium enterprises (SME). However, achieving visual realism in such VE requires high investments in terms of time and effort, while its usefulness has not yet become apparent from

  5. Sodium oxybate therapy provides multidimensional improvement in fibromyalgia: results of an international phase 3 trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spaeth, Michael; Bennett, Robert M; Benson, Beverly A; Wang, Y Grace; Lai, Chinglin; Choy, Ernest H

    2012-01-01

    Background Fibromyalgia is characterised by chronic musculoskeletal pain and multiple symptoms including fatigue, multidimensional function impairment, sleep disturbance and tenderness. Along with pain and fatigue, non-restorative sleep is a core symptom of fibromyalgia. Sodium oxybate (SXB) is thought to reduce non-restorative sleep abnormalities. This study evaluated effects of SXB on fibromyalgia-related pain and other symptoms. Methods 573 patients with fibromyalgia according to 1990 American College of Rheumatology criteria were enrolled at 108 centres in eight countries. Subjects were randomly assigned to placebo, SXB 4.5 g/night or SXB 6 g/night. The primary efficacy endpoint was the proportion of subjects with ≥30% reduction in pain visual analogue scale from baseline to treatment end. Other efficacy assessments included function, sleep quality, effect of sleep on function, fatigue, tenderness, health-related quality of life and subject's impression of change in overall wellbeing. Results Significant improvements in pain, sleep and other symptoms associated with fibromyalgia were seen in SXB treated subjects compared with placebo. The proportion of subjects with ≥30% pain reduction was 42.0% for SXB4.5 g/night (p=0.002) and 51.4% for SXB6 g/night (panxiety, somnolence, fatigue, muscle spasms and peripheral oedema. Conclusion These results, combined with findings from previous phase 2 and 3 studies, provide supportive evidence that SXB therapy affordsimportant benefits across multiple symptoms in subjects with fibromyalgia. PMID:22294641

  6. Improving Aviation Safety with information Visualization: A Flight Simulation Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aragon, Cecilia R.; Hearst, Marti

    2005-01-01

    Many aircraft accidents each year are caused by encounters with invisible airflow hazards. Recent advances in aviation sensor technology offer the potential for aircraft-based sensors that can gather large amounts of airflow velocity data in real-time. With this influx of data comes the need to study how best to present it to the pilot - a cognitively overloaded user focused on a primary task other than that of information visualization. In this paper, we present the results of a usability study of an airflow hazard visualization system that significantly reduced the crash rate among experienced helicopter pilots flying a high fidelity, aerodynamically realistic fixed-base rotorcraft flight simulator into hazardous conditions. We focus on one particular aviation application, but the results may be relevant to user interfaces in other operationally stressful environments.

  7. Improved custom statistics visualization for CA Performance Center data

    CERN Document Server

    Talevi, Iacopo

    2017-01-01

    The main goal of my project is to understand and experiment the possibilities that CA Performance Center (CA PC) offers for creating custom applications to display stored information through interesting visual means, such as maps. In particular, I have re-written some of the network statistics web pages in order to fetch data from new statistics modules in CA PC, which has its own API, and stop using the RRD data.

  8. Improved middle-ear soft-tissue visualization using synchrotron radiation phase-contrast imaging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elfarnawany, Mai; Rohani, Seyed Alireza; Ghomashchi, Soroush; Allen, Daniel G; Zhu, Ning; Agrawal, Sumit K; Ladak, Hanif M

    2017-10-01

    High resolution images are used as a basis for finite-element modeling of the middle-ear structures to study their biomechanical function. Commonly used imaging techniques such as micro-computed tomography (CT) and optical microscopy require extensive sample preparation, processing or staining using contrast agents to achieve sufficient soft-tissue contrast. We compare imaging of middle-ear structures in unstained, non-decalcified human temporal bones using conventional absorption-contrast micro-CT and using synchrotron radiation phase-contrast imaging (SR-PCI). Four cadaveric temporal bones were imaged using SR-PCI and conventional micro-CT. Images were qualitatively compared in terms of visualization of structural details and soft-tissue contrast using intensity profiles and histograms. In order to quantitatively compare SR-PCI to micro-CT, three-dimensional (3D) models of the ossicles were constructed from both modalities using a semi-automatic segmentation method as these structures are clearly visible in both types of images. Volumes of the segmented ossicles were computed and compared between the two imaging modalities and to estimates from the literature. SR-PCI images provided superior visualization of soft-tissue microstructures over conventional micro-CT images. Intensity profiles emphasized the improved contrast and detectability of soft-tissue in SR-PCI in comparison to absorption-contrast micro-CT. In addition, the semi-automatic segmentations of SR-PCI images yielded accurate 3D reconstructions of the ossicles with mean volumes in accord with volume estimates from micro-CT images and literature. Sample segmentations of the ossicles and soft tissue structures were provided on an online data repository for benefit of the research community. The improved visualization, modeling accuracy and simple sample preparation make SR-PCI a promising tool for generating reliable FE models of the middle-ear structures, including both soft tissues and bone. Copyright

  9. Targeted rehabilitation reduces visual dependency and improves balance in severe traumatic brain injury: a case study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaski, Diego; Buttell, Joseph; Greenwood, Richard

    2018-04-01

    To further understand the mechanisms underlying gait impairment following traumatic brain injury. A 58-year-old man presented with marked unsteadiness and motion sensitivity following a severe traumatic brain injury. He underwent a 6-week inpatient rehabilitation program focused on re-weighting and subsequently re-integrating ascending interoceptive information, by gradual reduction of maladaptive visual fixation techniques. We report clinical neurological outcomes and measures of functional outcome, as well as an objective assessment of visual dependency (the rod and disk test) at baseline and after the rehabilitation. Clinically, the patient had gait unsteadiness exacerbated by visual motion. A significant reduction in visual dependency occurred with tailored multi-disciplinary rehabilitation via gradual removal of visual fixation strategies that the patient had developed to maintain balance (t-test; p visual dependency in the generation of maladaptive gait strategies following brain injury. Our data suggest assessing and treating visual dependency to be an important component of gait rehabilitation after traumatic brain injury. Implications for rehabilitation Whilst gait disturbance in TBI is multifactorial, abnormal visual dependency may be important but under-recognised component of the disorder. Visual dependency can be easily and objectively assessed by the bedside in patients using a dynamic rod and disc test. Tailored rehabilitation with gradual reduction of maladaptive visual fixation can reduce visual dependency and contribute to improved gait and balance following TBI.

  10. Forging partnerships between optometrists and ergonomists to improve visual comfort and productivity in the workplace.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Long, Jennifer

    2014-01-01

    Ergonomists and optometrists often have mutual clients/patients with complex visual needs in the workplace but communication between the professionals is usually indirect through the client/patient. This paper describes a joint professional development meeting between optometrists and ergonomists in Canberra, Australia, which included a discussion to explore how to improve communication between the two professions. Optometrists and ergonomists reported they would prefer more information before conducting assessments and providing advice. Vision screening forms commonly in use for computer workers were viewed as inadequate to meet these needs. Communication between the two professions was hampered by absence of contact details of the optometrist/ergonomist, perceptions that the other profession is too busy to talk, privacy considerations in sharing information and funding issues for shared care arrangements. There are opportunities for increasing awareness of good vision in workplaces. Communication between optometrists and ergonomists can be improved by developing information-sharing documents relevant to modern workplaces.

  11. Intensive video gaming improves encoding speed to visual short-term memory in young male adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilms, Inge L; Petersen, Anders; Vangkilde, Signe

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to measure the effect of action video gaming on central elements of visual attention using Bundesen's (1990) Theory of Visual Attention. To examine the cognitive impact of action video gaming, we tested basic functions of visual attention in 42 young male adults. Participants were divided into three groups depending on the amount of time spent playing action video games: non-players (15h/month, N=20). All participants were tested in three tasks which tap central functions of visual attention and short-term memory: a test based on the Theory of Visual Attention (TVA), an enumeration test and finally the Attentional Network Test (ANT). The results show that action video gaming does not seem to impact the capacity of visual short-term memory. However, playing action video games does seem to improve the encoding speed of visual information into visual short-term memory and the improvement does seem to depend on the time devoted to gaming. This suggests that intense action video gaming improves basic attentional functioning and that this improvement generalizes into other activities. The implications of these findings for cognitive rehabilitation training are discussed. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. Visual Working Memory in Deaf Children with Diverse Communication Modes: Improvement by Differential Outcomes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lopez-Crespo, Ginesa; Daza, Maria Teresa; Mendez-Lopez, Magdalena

    2012-01-01

    Although visual functions have been proposed to be enhanced in deaf individuals, empirical studies have not yet established clear evidence on this issue. The present study aimed to determine whether deaf children with diverse communication modes had superior visual memory and whether their performance was improved by the use of differential…

  13. Visual Design Guidelines for Improving Learning from Dynamic and Interactive Digital Text

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jin, Sung-Hee

    2013-01-01

    Despite the dynamic and interactive features of digital text, the visual design guidelines for digital text are similar to those for printed text. The purpose of this study was to develop visual design guidelines for improving learning from dynamic and interactive digital text and to validate them by controlled testing. Two structure design…

  14. Improving Empathy and Communication Skills of Visually Impaired Early Adolescents through a Psycho-Education Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yildiz, Mehmet Ali; Duy, Baki

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate the effectiveness of an interpersonal communication skills psycho-education program to improve empathy and communication skills of visually impaired adolescents. Participants of the study were sixteen early adolescents schooling in an elementary school for visually impaired youth in Diyarbakir. The…

  15. Improvement of Java-based NS-2 Visualizer

    OpenAIRE

    Cai, Junbo

    2011-01-01

    NS-2 (Network Simulator version 2) is the most popular open-source network simulation program. NS-2 kernel is made in C++ but simulation scenario design is done in TCL (Tool Command Language). TCL is not a popular language for most networking researchers and engineers; therefore a user-graphic interface program is highly appreciated. We are aimed to design this software and denote it as NSSV (NS-2 Scenario Setup Visualizer). In this project, my work is to continue the leading work done by ...

  16. Complementary and conventional providers in cancer care: experience of communication with patients and steps to improve communication with other providers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stub, Trine; Quandt, Sara A; Arcury, Thomas A; Sandberg, Joanne C; Kristoffersen, Agnete E

    2017-06-08

    Effective interdisciplinary communication is important to achieve better quality in health care. The aims of this study were to compare conventional and complementary providers' experience of communication about complementary therapies and conventional medicine with their cancer patients, and to investigate how they experience interdisciplinary communication and cooperation. This study analyzed data from a self-administrated questionnaire. A total of 606 different health care providers, from four counties in Norway, completed the questionnaire. The survey was developed to describe aspects of the communication pattern among oncology doctors, nurses, family physicians and complementary therapists (acupuncturists, massage therapists and reflexologists/zone-therapists). Between-group differences were analyzed using chi-square, ANOVA and Fisher's exact tests. Significance level was defined as p cancer patients regarding complementary therapies. While complementary therapists advised their patients to apply both complementary and conventional modalities, medical doctors were less supportive of their patients' use of complementary therapies. Of conventional providers, nurses expressed more positive attitudes toward complementary therapies. Opportunities to improve communication between conventional and complementary providers were most strongly supported by complementary providers and nurses; medical doctors were less supportive of such attempts. A number of doctors showed lack of respect for complementary therapists, but asked for more research, guidelines for complementary modalities and training in conventional medicine for complementary therapists. For better quality of care, greater communication about complementary therapy use is needed between cancer patients and their conventional and complementary providers. In addition, more communication between conventional and complementary providers is needed. Nurses may have a crucial role in facilitating communication, as

  17. Fourier-based automatic alignment for improved Visual Cryptography schemes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Machizaud, Jacques; Chavel, Pierre; Fournel, Thierry

    2011-11-07

    In Visual Cryptography, several images, called "shadow images", that separately contain no information, are overlapped to reveal a shared secret message. We develop a method to digitally register one printed shadow image acquired by a camera with a purely digital shadow image, stored in memory. Using Fourier techniques derived from Fourier Optics concepts, the idea is to enhance and exploit the quasi periodicity of the shadow images, composed by a random distribution of black and white patterns on a periodic sampling grid. The advantage is to speed up the security control or the access time to the message, in particular in the cases of a small pixel size or of large numbers of pixels. Furthermore, the interest of visual cryptography can be increased by embedding the initial message in two shadow images that do not have identical mathematical supports, making manual registration impractical. Experimental results demonstrate the successful operation of the method, including the possibility to directly project the result onto the printed shadow image.

  18. Action video game playing is associated with improved visual sensitivity, but not alterations in visual sensory memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Appelbaum, L Gregory; Cain, Matthew S; Darling, Elise F; Mitroff, Stephen R

    2013-08-01

    Action video game playing has been experimentally linked to a number of perceptual and cognitive improvements. These benefits are captured through a wide range of psychometric tasks and have led to the proposition that action video game experience may promote the ability to extract statistical evidence from sensory stimuli. Such an advantage could arise from a number of possible mechanisms: improvements in visual sensitivity, enhancements in the capacity or duration for which information is retained in visual memory, or higher-level strategic use of information for decision making. The present study measured the capacity and time course of visual sensory memory using a partial report performance task as a means to distinguish between these three possible mechanisms. Sensitivity measures and parameter estimates that describe sensory memory capacity and the rate of memory decay were compared between individuals who reported high evels and low levels of action video game experience. Our results revealed a uniform increase in partial report accuracy at all stimulus-to-cue delays for action video game players but no difference in the rate or time course of the memory decay. The present findings suggest that action video game playing may be related to enhancements in the initial sensitivity to visual stimuli, but not to a greater retention of information in iconic memory buffers.

  19. Improvement of visual acuity and VEP after optic nerve contusion by NGF and its safety analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ming Zhao

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available AIM:To investigate the effect of neuropathic factor(NGFon visual acuity and visual evoked potential(VEPin patients with optic nerve contusion. METHODS:Totally 78 patients(78 eyeswith optic nerve contusion were selected. From January 2013 to June 2016, 39 cases(39 eyeswere divided into observation group and control group respectively according to the random number table method. Prednisone, vitamins and mecobalamin tablets treatment were given to both groups, based on that, the observation group was given NGF treatment, continuous treatment of 2 courses(21d for a course of treatment. RESULTS: There was no significant difference in visual field defect and visual field sensitivity between the observation group and the control group before treatment(P>0.05. After treatment, the visual field defect degree of the observation group was smaller, the visual field sensitivity was better than that of the control group(PP>0.05. After treatment, the P100 wave latency of the observation group was significantly shorter than that of the control group(PPPCONCLUSION: NGF treatment for optic nerve contusion can significantly improve the patient's visual acuity, VEP indicators, reduce visual field defects, improve visual field sensitivity.

  20. NOAA's Science On a Sphere Education Program: Application of a Scientific Visualization System to Teach Earth System Science and Improve our Understanding About Creating Effective Visualizations

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDougall, C.; McLaughlin, J.

    2008-12-01

    NOAA has developed several programs aimed at facilitating the use of earth system science data and data visualizations by formal and informal educators. One of them, Science On a Sphere, a visualization display tool and system that uses networked LCD projectors to display animated global datasets onto the outside of a suspended, 1.7-meter diameter opaque sphere, enables science centers, museums, and universities to display real-time and current earth system science data. NOAA's Office of Education has provided grants to such education institutions to develop exhibits featuring Science On a Sphere (SOS) and create content for and evaluate audience impact. Currently, 20 public education institutions have permanent Science On a Sphere exhibits and 6 more will be installed soon. These institutions and others that are working to create and evaluate content for this system work collaboratively as a network to improve our collective knowledge about how to create educationally effective visualizations. Network members include other federal agencies, such as, NASA and the Dept. of Energy, and major museums such as Smithsonian and American Museum of Natural History, as well as a variety of mid-sized and small museums and universities. Although the audiences in these institutions vary widely in their scientific awareness and understanding, we find there are misconceptions and lack of familiarity with viewing visualizations that are common among the audiences. Through evaluations performed in these institutions we continue to evolve our understanding of how to create content that is understandable by those with minimal scientific literacy. The findings from our network will be presented including the importance of providing context, real-world connections and imagery to accompany the visualizations and the need for audience orientation before the visualizations are viewed. Additionally, we will review the publicly accessible virtual library housing over 200 datasets for SOS

  1. Data visualization

    CERN Document Server

    Azzam, Tarek

    2013-01-01

    Do you communicate data and information to stakeholders? In Part 1, we introduce recent developments in the quantitative and qualitative data visualization field and provide a historical perspective on data visualization, its potential role in evaluation practice, and future directions. Part 2 delivers concrete suggestions for optimally using data visualization in evaluation, as well as suggestions for best practices in data visualization design. It focuses on specific quantitative and qualitative data visualization approaches that include data dashboards, graphic recording, and geographic information systems (GIS). Readers will get a step-by-step process for designing an effective data dashboard system for programs and organizations, and various suggestions to improve their utility.

  2. Improving the Efficiency and Ease of Healthcare Analysis Through Use of Data Visualization Dashboards.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stadler, Jennifer G; Donlon, Kipp; Siewert, Jordan D; Franken, Tessa; Lewis, Nathaniel E

    2016-06-01

    The digitization of a patient's health record has profoundly impacted medicine and healthcare. The compilation and accessibility of medical history has provided clinicians an unprecedented, holistic account of a patient's conditions, procedures, medications, family history, and social situation. In addition to the bedside benefits, this level of information has opened the door for population-level monitoring and research, the results of which can be used to guide initiatives that are aimed at improving quality of care. Cerner Corporation partners with health systems to help guide population management and quality improvement projects. With such an enormous and diverse client base-varying in geography, size, organizational structure, and analytic needs-discerning meaning in the data and how they fit with that particular hospital's goals is a slow, difficult task that requires clinical, statistical, and technical literacy. This article describes the development of dashboards for efficient data visualization at the healthcare facility level. Focusing on two areas with broad clinical importance, sepsis patient outcomes and 30-day hospital readmissions, dashboards were developed with the goal of aggregating data and providing meaningful summary statistics, highlighting critical performance metrics, and providing easily digestible visuals that can be understood by a wide range of personnel with varying levels of skill and areas of expertise. These internal-use dashboards have allowed associates in multiple roles to perform a quick and thorough assessment on a hospital of interest by providing the data to answer necessary questions and to identify important trends or opportunities. This automation of a previously manual process has greatly increased efficiency, saving hours of work time per hospital analyzed. Additionally, the dashboards have standardized the analysis process, ensuring use of the same metrics and processes so that overall themes can be compared across

  3. Visiting Richard Serra’s Promenade sculpture improves postural control and judgment of subjective visual vertical.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zoï eKapoula

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Body sway while maintaining an upright quiet stance reflects an active process of balance based on the integration of visual, vestibular, somatosensory and proprioceptive inputs. Richard Serra’s Promenade sculpture featured in the 2008 Monumenta exhibition at the Grand Palais in Paris, France is herein hypothesised to have stimulated the body’s vertical and longitudinal axes as it showcased 5 monumental rectangular solids pitched at a 1.69° angle.Using computerised dynamic posturography we measured the body sway of 23 visitors when fixating a cross, or when observing the artwork (fixating it or actively exploring it with eye movements before and after walking around and alongside the sculpture (i.e., before and after a promenade. A first fixation at the sculpture increased medio-lateral stability (in terms of spectral power of body sway. Eye movement exploration in the depth of the sculpture increased antero-posterior stability (in terms of spectral power and cancelling time of body sway at the expense of medio-lateral stability (in terms of cancelling time. Moreover, a medio-lateral instability associated with eye movement exploration before the promenade (in terms of body sway sensu stricto was cancelled after the promenade. Finally, the overall medio-lateral stability (in terms of spectral power increased after the promenade.Fourteen additional visitors were asked to sit in a dark room and adjust a luminous line to what they considered to be the earth-vertical axis. The promenade executed within the sculpted environment afforded by Serra’s monumental statuary works resulted in significantly improved performances on the subjective visual vertical test.We attribute these effects to the sculpted environment provided by the exhibition which may have acted as a kind of physiologic training ground thereby improving the visitors’ overall sense of visual perspective, equilibrium and gravity.

  4. Multisensory Rehabilitation Training Improves Spatial Perception in Totally but Not Partially Visually Deprived Children

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giulia Cappagli

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Since it has been shown that spatial development can be delayed in blind children, focused sensorimotor trainings that associate auditory and motor information might be used to prevent the risk of spatial-related developmental delays or impairments from an early age. With this aim, we proposed a new technological device based on the implicit link between action and perception: ABBI (Audio Bracelet for Blind Interaction is an audio bracelet that produces a sound when a movement occurs by allowing the substitution of the visuo-motor association with a new audio-motor association. In this study, we assessed the effects of an extensive but entertaining sensorimotor training with ABBI on the development of spatial hearing in a group of seven 3–5 years old children with congenital blindness (n = 2; light perception or no perception of light or low vision (n = 5; visual acuity range 1.1–1.7 LogMAR. The training required the participants to play several spatial games individually and/or together with the psychomotor therapist 1 h per week for 3 months: the spatial games consisted of exercises meant to train their ability to associate visual and motor-related signals from their body, in order to foster the development of multisensory processes. We measured spatial performance by asking participants to indicate the position of one single fixed (static condition or moving (dynamic condition sound source on a vertical sensorized surface. We found that spatial performance of congenitally blind but not low vision children is improved after the training, indicating that early interventions with the use of science-driven devices based on multisensory capabilities can provide consistent advancements in therapeutic interventions, improving the quality of life of children with visual disability.

  5. Providing Access and Visualization to Global Cloud Properties from GEO Satellites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chee, T.; Nguyen, L.; Minnis, P.; Spangenberg, D.; Palikonda, R.; Ayers, J. K.

    2015-12-01

    Providing public access to cloud macro and microphysical properties is a key concern for the NASA Langley Research Center Cloud and Radiation Group. This work describes a tool and method that allows end users to easily browse and access cloud information that is otherwise difficult to acquire and manipulate. The core of the tool is an application-programming interface that is made available to the public. One goal of the tool is to provide a demonstration to end users so that they can use the dynamically generated imagery as an input into their own work flows for both image generation and cloud product requisition. This project builds upon NASA Langley Cloud and Radiation Group's experience with making real-time and historical satellite cloud product imagery accessible and easily searchable. As we see the increasing use of virtual supply chains that provide additional value at each link there is value in making satellite derived cloud product information available through a simple access method as well as allowing users to browse and view that imagery as they need rather than in a manner most convenient for the data provider. Using the Open Geospatial Consortium's Web Processing Service as our access method, we describe a system that uses a hybrid local and cloud based parallel processing system that can return both satellite imagery and cloud product imagery as well as the binary data used to generate them in multiple formats. The images and cloud products are sourced from multiple satellites and also "merged" datasets created by temporally and spatially matching satellite sensors. Finally, the tool and API allow users to access information that spans the time ranges that our group has information available. In the case of satellite imagery, the temporal range can span the entire lifetime of the sensor.

  6. Visual representation of statistical information improves diagnostic inferences in doctors and their patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Retamero, Rocio; Hoffrage, Ulrich

    2013-04-01

    Doctors and patients have difficulty inferring the predictive value of a medical test from information about the prevalence of a disease and the sensitivity and false-positive rate of the test. Previous research has established that communicating such information in a format the human mind is adapted to-namely natural frequencies-as compared to probabilities, boosts accuracy of diagnostic inferences. In a study, we investigated to what extent these inferences can be improved-beyond the effect of natural frequencies-by providing visual aids. Participants were 81 doctors and 81 patients who made diagnostic inferences about three medical tests on the basis of information about prevalence of a disease, and the sensitivity and false-positive rate of the tests. Half of the participants received the information in natural frequencies, while the other half received the information in probabilities. Half of the participants only received numerical information, while the other half additionally received a visual aid representing the numerical information. In addition, participants completed a numeracy scale. Our study showed three important findings: (1) doctors and patients made more accurate inferences when information was communicated in natural frequencies as compared to probabilities; (2) visual aids boosted accuracy even when the information was provided in natural frequencies; and (3) doctors were more accurate in their diagnostic inferences than patients, though differences in accuracy disappeared when differences in numerical skills were controlled for. Our findings have important implications for medical practice as they suggest suitable ways to communicate quantitative medical data. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Communicative interactions improve visual detection of biological motion.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valeria Manera

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: In the context of interacting activities requiring close-body contact such as fighting or dancing, the actions of one agent can be used to predict the actions of the second agent. In the present study, we investigated whether interpersonal predictive coding extends to interactive activities--such as communicative interactions--in which no physical contingency is implied between the movements of the interacting individuals. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Participants observed point-light displays of two agents (A and B performing separate actions. In the communicative condition, the action performed by agent B responded to a communicative gesture performed by agent A. In the individual condition, agent A's communicative action was substituted with a non-communicative action. Using a simultaneous masking detection task, we demonstrate that observing the communicative gesture performed by agent A enhanced visual discrimination of agent B. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our finding complements and extends previous evidence for interpersonal predictive coding, suggesting that the communicative gestures of one agent can serve as a predictor for the expected actions of the respondent, even if no physical contact between agents is implied.

  8. Self-Study Guide for Florida VPK Provider Improvement Plan Development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phillips, Beth M.; Mazzeo, Debbie; Smith, Kevin

    2016-01-01

    This Self-Study Guide has been developed to support Florida Voluntary Prekindergarten Providers (VPK) who are required to complete an improvement plan process (i.e., low-performing providers). The guide has sections that can be used during both the process of selecting target areas for an improvement plan and the process of implementing new or…

  9. Perils of providing visual health information overviews for consumers with low health literacy or high stress

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Trudi

    2010-01-01

    This pilot study explores the impact of a health topics overview (HTO) on reading comprehension. The HTO is generated automatically based on the presence of Unified Medical Language System terms. In a controlled setting, we presented health texts and posed 15 questions for each. We compared performance with and without the HTO. The answers were available in the text, but not always in the HTO. Our study (n=48) showed that consumers with low health literacy or high stress performed poorly when the HTO was available without linking directly to the answer. They performed better with direct links in the HTO or when the HTO was not available at all. Consumers with high health literacy or low stress performed better regardless of the availability of the HTO. Our data suggests that vulnerable consumers relied solely on the HTO when it was available and were misled when it did not provide the answer. PMID:20190068

  10. Adding vibrotactile feedback to a myoelectric-controlled hand improves performance when online visual feedback is disturbed.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raveh, Eitan; Portnoy, Sigal; Friedman, Jason

    2018-01-17

    We investigated whether adding vibrotactile feedback to a myoelectric-controlled hand, when visual feedback is disturbed, can improve performance during a functional test. For this purpose, able-bodied subjects, activating a myoelectric-controlled hand attached to their right hand performed the modified Box & Blocks test, grasping and manipulating wooden blocks over a partition. This was performed in 3 conditions, using a repeated-measures design: in full light, in a dark room where visual feedback was disturbed and no auditory feedback - one time with the addition of tactile feedback provided during object grasping and manipulation, and one time without any tactile feedback. The average time needed to transfer one block was measured, and an infrared camera was used to give information on the number of grasping errors during performance of the test. Our results show that when vibrotactile feedback was provided, performance time was reduced significantly, compared with when no vibrotactile feedback was available. Furthermore, the accuracy of grasping and manipulation was improved, reflected by significantly fewer errors during test performance. In conclusion, adding vibrotactile feedback to a myoelectric-controlled hand has positive effects on functional performance when visual feedback is disturbed. This may have applications to current myoelectric-controlled hands, as adding tactile feedback may help prosthesis users to improve their functional ability during daily life activities in different environments, particularly when limited visual feedback is available or desirable. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Visualizing the Immune System: Providing Key Insights into HIV/SIV Infections

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jacob D. Estes

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Immunological inductive tissues, such as secondary lymphoid organs, are composed of distinct anatomical microenvironments for the generation of immune responses to pathogens and immunogens. These microenvironments are characterized by the compartmentalization of highly specialized immune and stromal cell populations, as well as the presence of a complex network of soluble factors and chemokines that direct the intra-tissue trafficking of naïve and effector cell populations. Imaging platforms have provided critical contextual information regarding the molecular and cellular interactions that orchestrate the spatial microanatomy of relevant cells and the development of immune responses against pathogens. Particularly in HIV/SIV disease, imaging technologies are of great importance in the investigation of the local interplay between the virus and host cells, with respect to understanding viral dynamics and persistence, immune responses (i.e., adaptive and innate inflammatory responses, tissue structure and pathologies, and changes to the surrounding milieu and function of immune cells. Merging imaging platforms with other cutting-edge technologies could lead to novel findings regarding the phenotype, function, and molecular signatures of particular immune cell targets, further promoting the development of new antiviral treatments and vaccination strategies.

  12. Improved microcalcification visualization using dual-energy digital mammography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsai, Chia-Jung; Chen, Ran-Chou; Peng, Hui-Ling; Hsu, Wen-Lin; Lee, Jason J S

    2013-07-01

    Dual-energy digital mammography (DEDM), involving a combination of high-energy (HE) and low-energy (LE) images, has been investigated as offering a potential improvement in microcalcification detection obscured by overlapping tissue structures. To explore the possibility to improve detection of microcalcifications using the DEDM technique. Three DEDM protocols were performed by adjusting the effective tube current time product (mAs) of LE image at the same (100%), one half (50%), and one-quarter (25%) of that used in HE image acquisition, named DEDM100%, DEDM50%, and DEDM25%, respectively. A single-energy digital mammography (SEDM) method was also used as a control. A total of 525 regions of interest (ROIs) were used to compare the performance of the DEDM to that of SEDM using free-response receiver-operating characteristic (FROC) and areas under the FROC curve (Az). All DEDM protocols ranked significantly higher than the SEDM method (P microcalcification detectability and radiation dose for any tissue density. Therefore, the DEDM50% has the potential to minimize excess radiation dose without a negative impact on image quality which could improve earlier diagnosis of breast cancer.

  13. Improving the visualization of 3D ultrasound data with 3D filtering

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shamdasani, Vijay; Bae, Unmin; Managuli, Ravi; Kim, Yongmin

    2005-04-01

    3D ultrasound imaging is quickly gaining widespread clinical acceptance as a visualization tool that allows clinicians to obtain unique views not available with traditional 2D ultrasound imaging and an accurate understanding of patient anatomy. The ability to acquire, manipulate and interact with the 3D data in real time is an important feature of 3D ultrasound imaging. Volume rendering is often used to transform the 3D volume into 2D images for visualization. Unlike computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), volume rendering of 3D ultrasound data creates noisy images in which surfaces cannot be readily discerned due to speckles and low signal-to-noise ratio. The degrading effect of speckles is especially severe when gradient shading is performed to add depth cues to the image. Several researchers have reported that smoothing the pre-rendered volume with a 3D convolution kernel, such as 5x5x5, can significantly improve the image quality, but at the cost of decreased resolution. In this paper, we have analyzed the reasons for the improvement in image quality with 3D filtering and determined that the improvement is due to two effects. The filtering reduces speckles in the volume data, which leads to (1) more accurate gradient computation and better shading and (2) decreased noise during compositing. We have found that applying a moderate-size smoothing kernel (e.g., 7x7x7) to the volume data before gradient computation combined with some smoothing of the volume data (e.g., with a 3x3x3 lowpass filter) before compositing yielded images with good depth perception and no appreciable loss in resolution. Providing the clinician with the flexibility to control both of these effects (i.e., shading and compositing) independently could improve the visualization of the 3D ultrasound data. Introducing this flexibility into the ultrasound machine requires 3D filtering to be performed twice on the volume data, once before gradient computation and again before

  14. IMPROVEMENT OF EDUCATIONAL COGNITIVE ACTIVITY STUDENTS IN THE PROFESSIONAL EDUCATIONAL ORGANIZATION ON THE BASIS OF VISUALIZATION TECHNOLOGY OF EDUCATIONAL INFORMATION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liliya A. Kolmakova

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The aim of the study is to consider the problem of improving the quality of education in the professional educational organizations.Methods. The scientific and pedagogical analyses of the concepts forming a terminological field of a problem are used. The system, competence-based and personal approaches are used for development of models of cognitive visualization. Questioning of students was carried out to establish the level of development of their informative activity.Results. The constituent parts of the modern educational process and the need to create specific conditions for its implementation are identified and described. The author gives a generalized characteristic of visualization technology of educational information. The application of cognitive visualization models using information and communication technologies are proved. The results showing the evolution of motivational indicators of students’ activity before and after application of LSM and the «Metaplan» in the educational process are presented.Scientific novelty. The pedagogical conditions that allow using information and communication technologies as means of the trainees’ educational informative activity improvement in the professional educational organization are defined. Features of the directed application of methods of cognitive visualization of educational information, both for improvement of educational cognitive activity, and for formation of professional competences of students by profession «A chef, a confectioner» are noted.Practical importance. Use of methods of cognitive visualization in educational process on the example of studying of Chemistry and Biology in the professional educational organization is considered in details. The teaching package providing application of methods of cognitive visualization of educational information for the purpose of improvement of educational cognitive activity of students in the professional educational organization

  15. Hand placement near the visual stimulus improves orientation selectivity in V2 neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sergio, Lauren E.; Crawford, J. Douglas; Fallah, Mazyar

    2015-01-01

    Often, the brain receives more sensory input than it can process simultaneously. Spatial attention helps overcome this limitation by preferentially processing input from a behaviorally-relevant location. Recent neuropsychological and psychophysical studies suggest that attention is deployed to near-hand space much like how the oculomotor system can deploy attention to an upcoming gaze position. Here we provide the first neuronal evidence that the presence of a nearby hand enhances orientation selectivity in early visual processing area V2. When the hand was placed outside the receptive field, responses to the preferred orientation were significantly enhanced without a corresponding significant increase at the orthogonal orientation. Consequently, there was also a significant sharpening of orientation tuning. In addition, the presence of the hand reduced neuronal response variability. These results indicate that attention is automatically deployed to the space around a hand, improving orientation selectivity. Importantly, this appears to be optimal for motor control of the hand, as opposed to oculomotor mechanisms which enhance responses without sharpening orientation selectivity. Effector-based mechanisms for visual enhancement thus support not only the spatiotemporal dissociation of gaze and reach, but also the optimization of vision for their separate requirements for guiding movements. PMID:25717165

  16. Can Human Visual Surveillance be Improved with Intent Recognition?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alireza Tavakkoli

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available In video surveillance applications, trained operators watch a number of screens simultaneously to detect potential security threats. Looking for such events in real time, in multiple videos simultaneously, is cognitively challenging for human operators. This study suggests that there is a significant need to use an automated video analysis system to aid human perception of security events in video surveillance applications. In this paper the performance of humans in observing a simulated environment is studied and quantified. Furthermore, this paper proposes an automated mechanism to detect events before they occur by means of an automated intent recognition system. Upon the detection of a potential event the proposed mechanism communicates the location of such potential threat to the human operator to redirect attention to the areas of interest within the video. Studying the improvements achieved by applying the intent recognition into the simulated video surveillance application in a two phase trial supports the need for an automated event detection approach in improving human video surveillance performance. Moreover, this paper presents a comparison of the performance in video surveillance with and without the aid of the intent recognition mechanism.

  17. Investigation of echogenic surface enhancements for improved needle visualization in ultrasonography: A PRISMA systematic review

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hovgesen, Caroline Harder; Wilhjelm, Jens E.; Vilmann, Peter

    Background: Visualization of standard needles at steep angles in clinical Ultrasound (US) images is a problematic and important concern. This systematic review evaluates published studies that investigate echogenic needles and how surface enhancements can improve needle visualization. Method......: A systematic search was performed in five databases: Cochrane Library, Embase (through Ovid), MEDLINE (through PubMed), Scopus, and Web of Science from inception to April 12th, 2017. Each search was based on the search terms: ultrasound, needle, visualization, and comparison, with related synonyms and spelling...... matters. Results: 29 studies were identified and included in the qualitative synthesis. Conclusion: Overall, studies agree, that echogenic surface enhancements improve needle visualization in US images at steep angles regardless of target, applied US device and probe, operators, assessors, and methods...

  18. Using a Teaching Intervention and Calibrated Peer Review™ Diagnostics to Improve Visual Communication Skills.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saterbak, Ann; Moturu, Anoosha; Volz, Tracy

    2018-03-01

    Rice University's bioengineering department incorporates written, oral, and visual communication instruction into its undergraduate curriculum to aid student learning and to prepare students to communicate their knowledge and discoveries precisely and persuasively. In a tissue culture lab course, we used a self- and peer-review tool called Calibrated Peer Review™ (CPR) to diagnose student learning gaps in visual communication skills on a poster assignment. We then designed an active learning intervention that required students to practice the visual communication skills that needed improvement and used CPR to measure the changes. After the intervention, we observed that students performed significantly better in their ability to develop high quality graphs and tables that represent experimental data. Based on these outcomes, we conclude that guided task practice, collaborative learning, and calibrated peer review can be used to improve engineering students' visual communication skills.

  19. Improving Big Data Visual Analytics with Interactive Virtual Reality

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-05-22

    reality (VR) has made many advances in the realm of game development by the reproduction of realistic first person perspectives [25]. Games engines...the form of tweets [19]. Analyzing tweets can help provide insight on social behaviors , controversial topics, user reputation, and popular locations...shows an example of how tweets are shown as blue birds by default whereas those that are tagged with the word ”danger” are represented as red skulls

  20. Improving texture optimization with application to visualizing meat products

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Clemmensen, Line Katrine Harder; Laursen, Lasse Farnung

    2011-01-01

    dimensional space. Applying a principal component analysis on the texture patches originating from the synthesized solid accelerates the process. These patches are then reduced in dimensionality until ”only” 95% of their original variance remains. This usually results in a dimension reduction from 192...... (such as color, translucency, reflective properties). One way of reintroducing this lost information back to the volume data is to synthesize an appropriate texture and apply this to the volume data. A recent method within the field of texture synthesis is called Texture Optimization presented by Kopf...... et al. in 2007. This method accepts a number of 2D input exemplars, from which it generates a solid texture volume. The volume is iteratively improved via an expectation maximization algorithm. The bottleneck of Texture Optimization occurs during a nearest neighbor search, between texture patches...

  1. Association of auditory-verbal and visual hallucinations with impaired and improved recognition of colored pictures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brébion, Gildas; Stephan-Otto, Christian; Usall, Judith; Huerta-Ramos, Elena; Perez del Olmo, Mireia; Cuevas-Esteban, Jorge; Haro, Josep Maria; Ochoa, Susana

    2015-09-01

    A number of cognitive underpinnings of auditory hallucinations have been established in schizophrenia patients, but few have, as yet, been uncovered for visual hallucinations. In previous research, we unexpectedly observed that auditory hallucinations were associated with poor recognition of color, but not black-and-white (b/w), pictures. In this study, we attempted to replicate and explain this finding. Potential associations with visual hallucinations were explored. B/w and color pictures were presented to 50 schizophrenia patients and 45 healthy individuals under 2 conditions of visual context presentation corresponding to 2 levels of visual encoding complexity. Then, participants had to recognize the target pictures among distractors. Auditory-verbal hallucinations were inversely associated with the recognition of the color pictures presented under the most effortful encoding condition. This association was fully mediated by working-memory span. Visual hallucinations were associated with improved recognition of the color pictures presented under the less effortful condition. Patients suffering from visual hallucinations were not impaired, relative to the healthy participants, in the recognition of these pictures. Decreased working-memory span in patients with auditory-verbal hallucinations might impede the effortful encoding of stimuli. Visual hallucinations might be associated with facilitation in the visual encoding of natural scenes, or with enhanced color perception abilities. (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).

  2. Improved visual function with dietary intervention in a child with lipemia retinalis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fu, Valeria; Scanga, Hannah L; Medsinge, Anagha; Nischal, Ken K

    2014-10-01

    We present a 4.8-year-old female with grade 3 lipemia retinalis due to lipoprotein lipase deficiency, an abnormal electroretinogram, and bilateral decreased visual acuity. Strict dietary intervention resulted in reversal of lipemia retinalis, normalization of her electroretinogram, and improved visual acuity in both eyes. Copyright © 2014 American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Progressive improvement of impaired visual acuity during the first year after transsphenoidal surgery for non-functioning pituitary macroadenoma

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dekkers, O. M.; de Keizer, R. J. W.; Roelfsema, F.; Vd Klaauw, A. A.; Honkoop, P. J.; van Dulken, H.; Smit, J. W. A.; Romijn, J. A.; Pereira, A. M.

    2007-01-01

    Improvement of visual field defects continues even years after the initial surgical treatment. Because this process of continuing improvement has not been documented for visual acuity, we audited our data to explore the pattern of recovery of visual acuity until 1 year after transsphenoidal surgery

  4. From Static to Interactive: Transforming Data Visualization to Improve Transparency.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tracey L Weissgerber

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Data presentation for scientific publications in small sample size studies has not changed substantially in decades. It relies on static figures and tables that may not provide sufficient information for critical evaluation, particularly of the results from small sample size studies. Interactive graphics have the potential to transform scientific publications from static reports of experiments into interactive datasets. We designed an interactive line graph that demonstrates how dynamic alternatives to static graphics for small sample size studies allow for additional exploration of empirical datasets. This simple, free, web-based tool (http://statistika.mfub.bg.ac.rs/interactive-graph/ demonstrates the overall concept and may promote widespread use of interactive graphics.

  5. Does mobility performance of visually impaired adults improve immediately after orientation and mobility training?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soong, G P; Lovie-Kitchin, J E; Brown, B

    2001-09-01

    Previous studies that have attempted to determine the effect of orientation and mobility training on mobility performance of visually impaired adults have had a number of limitations. With the inclusion of a control group of subjects, this study investigated the effect of orientation and mobility training on mobility performance of a group of visually impaired adults. Vision was measured binocularly as high- and low-contrast visual acuity, letter and edge contrast sensitivity, and Humphrey kinetic visual fields. The subjects' mobility performance was assessed as percentage preferred walking speed (PPWS) and error score before and after mobility training. Orientation and mobility training did not enhance mobility performance compared with the control group, who did not receive training, when performance was measured immediately after training. PPWS improved for both groups with short-term practice only, but there was no improvement in error score due to either practice or training. There was no immediate improvement in mobility performance of visually impaired adults after orientation and mobility training. Familiarity with the route may play an important role in measured improvement of mobility performance after orientation and mobility training.

  6. Fourier power, subjective distance and object categories all provide plausible models of BOLD responses in scene-selective visual areas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark Daniel Lescroart

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Perception of natural visual scenes activates several functional areas in the human brain, including the Parahippocampal Place Area (PPA, Retrosplenial Complex (RSC, and the Occipital Place Area (OPA. It is currently unclear what specific scene-related features are represented in these areas. Previous studies have suggested that PPA, RSC, and/or OPA might represent at least three qualitatively different classes of features: (1 2D features related to Fourier power; (2 3D spatial features such as the distance to objects in a scene; or (3 abstract features such as the categories of objects in a scene. To determine which of these hypotheses best describes the visual representation in scene-selective areas, we applied voxel-wise modeling (VM to BOLD fMRI responses elicited by a set of 1,386 images of natural scenes. VM provides an efficient method for testing competing hypotheses by comparing predictions of brain activity based on encoding models that instantiate each hypothesis. Here we evaluated three different encoding models that instantiate each of the three hypotheses listed above. We used linear regression to fit each encoding model to the fMRI data recorded from each voxel, and we evaluated each fit model by estimating the amount of variance it predicted in a withheld portion of the data set. We found that voxel-wise models based on Fourier power or the subjective distance to objects in each scene predicted much of the variance predicted by a model based on object categories. Furthermore, the response variance explained by these three models is largely shared, and the individual models explain little unique variance in responses. Based on an evaluation of previous studies and the data we present here, we conclude that there is currently no good basis to favor any one of the three alternative hypotheses about visual representation in scene-selective areas. We offer suggestions for further studies that may help resolve this issue.

  7. Fourier power, subjective distance, and object categories all provide plausible models of BOLD responses in scene-selective visual areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lescroart, Mark D.; Stansbury, Dustin E.; Gallant, Jack L.

    2015-01-01

    Perception of natural visual scenes activates several functional areas in the human brain, including the Parahippocampal Place Area (PPA), Retrosplenial Complex (RSC), and the Occipital Place Area (OPA). It is currently unclear what specific scene-related features are represented in these areas. Previous studies have suggested that PPA, RSC, and/or OPA might represent at least three qualitatively different classes of features: (1) 2D features related to Fourier power; (2) 3D spatial features such as the distance to objects in a scene; or (3) abstract features such as the categories of objects in a scene. To determine which of these hypotheses best describes the visual representation in scene-selective areas, we applied voxel-wise modeling (VM) to BOLD fMRI responses elicited by a set of 1386 images of natural scenes. VM provides an efficient method for testing competing hypotheses by comparing predictions of brain activity based on encoding models that instantiate each hypothesis. Here we evaluated three different encoding models that instantiate each of the three hypotheses listed above. We used linear regression to fit each encoding model to the fMRI data recorded from each voxel, and we evaluated each fit model by estimating the amount of variance it predicted in a withheld portion of the data set. We found that voxel-wise models based on Fourier power or the subjective distance to objects in each scene predicted much of the variance predicted by a model based on object categories. Furthermore, the response variance explained by these three models is largely shared, and the individual models explain little unique variance in responses. Based on an evaluation of previous studies and the data we present here, we conclude that there is currently no good basis to favor any one of the three alternative hypotheses about visual representation in scene-selective areas. We offer suggestions for further studies that may help resolve this issue. PMID:26594164

  8. Improving Pediatric Education for Emergency Medical Services Providers: A Qualitative Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Seth A; Hayden, Theresa C; Randell, Kimberly A; Rappaport, Lara; Stevenson, Michelle D; Kim, In K

    2017-02-01

    Previous studies have illustrated pediatric knowledge deficits among Emergency Medical Services (EMS) providers. The purpose of this study was to identify perspectives of a diverse group of EMS providers regarding pediatric prehospital care educational deficits and proposed methods of training improvements. Purposive sampling was used to recruit EMS providers in diverse settings for study participation. Two separate focus groups of EMS providers (administrative and non-administrative personnel) were held in three locations (urban, suburban, and rural). A professional moderator facilitated focus group discussion using a guide developed by the study team. A grounded theory approach was used to analyze data. Forty-two participants provided data. Four major themes were identified: (1) suboptimal previous pediatric training and training gaps in continuing pediatric education; (2) opportunities for improved interactions with emergency department (ED) staff, including case-based feedback on patient care; (3) barriers to optimal pediatric prehospital care; and (4) proposed pediatric training improvements. Focus groups identified four themes surrounding preparation of EMS personnel for providing care to pediatric patients. These themes can guide future educational interventions for EMS to improve pediatric prehospital care. Brown SA , Hayden TC , Randell KA , Rappaport L , Stevenson MD , Kim IK . Improving pediatric education for Emergency Medical Services providers: a qualitative study. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2017;32(1):20-26.

  9. Image Dis-Integration for Improved Plasmasphere Visualization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newman, Timothy S.

    2002-01-01

    Traditionally, study of the plasmasphere has involved terrestrial observation of local characteristics. Global modeling of the plasmasphere in such an observation regime made use of an ensemble of (sparse) local measurements. Recently, sensors aboard the IMAGE (Imager for Magnetopause-to-Aurora Global Exploration) satellite (in particular, the EUV (Extreme Ultra Violet) Imager) have created the potential for truly global study of the plasmasphere. IMAGE was launched in spring of 2000 in an orbit with apogee altitude 7.2 RE(Earth radii) and perigee altitude 1000 km. IMAGE's EUV sensor allows an external view of the distribution of cold plasma in the plasmasphere to be acquired. EUV is designed to image light emission at 30.4 nanometers, which is the emission wavelength of the He+ ion in the presence of solar radiation. He+ makes up approximately 15-20% of the plasma in the plasmasphere, thus imaging of He+ enables determination of plasma distribution. The EUV instrument provides a 90 deg by 84 deg field of view which is imaged as an equally spaced 150x140 pixel array on a spherical imaging surface. The EUV produces an image approximately every 10 minutes when the sensor is operating. Since EUV images contain line-of-sight integrations of plasma distributions, they do not directly express equatorial plane density (which would enable comparison of observed plasma distributions with predictions from models). Furthermore, the plasma density at any point in three-space is not known. The goal of our work was development of a technique that can enable plasma density to be determined throughout three-space. Our approach to creation of a three-space representation of the plasma distribution involves disintegrating the EUV lines of sight to form a volumetric map of plasma densities.

  10. Showing the Unsayable: Participatory Visual Approaches and the Constitution of 'Patient Experience' in Healthcare Quality Improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Papoulias, Constantina

    2017-10-16

    This article considers the strengths and potential contributions of participatory visual methods for healthcare quality improvement research. It argues that such approaches may enable us to expand our understanding of 'patient experience' and of its potential for generating new knowledge for health systems. In particular, they may open up dimensions of people's engagement with services and treatments which exceed both the declarative nature of responses to questionnaires and the narrative sequencing of self reports gathered through qualitative interviewing. I will suggest that working with such methods may necessitate a more reflexive approach to the constitution of evidence in quality improvement work. To this end, the article will first consider the emerging rationale for the use of visual participatory methods in improvement before outlining the implications of two related approaches-photo-elicitation and PhotoVoice-for the constitution of 'experience'. It will then move to a participatory model for healthcare improvement work, Experience Based Co-Design (EBCD). It will argue that EBCD exemplifies both the strengths and the limitations of adequating visual participatory approaches to quality improvement ends. The article will conclude with a critical reflection on a small photographic study, in which the author participated, and which sought to harness service user perspectives for the design of psychiatric facilities, as a way of considering the potential contribution of visual participatory methods for quality improvement.

  11. Neurologist consistency in interpreting information provided by an interactive visualization software for deep brain stimulation postoperative programming assistance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pallavaram, Srivatsan; Phibbs, Fenna T; Tolleson, Christopher; Davis, Thomas L; Fang, John; Hedera, Peter; Li, Rui; Koyama, Tatsuki; Dawant, Benoit M; D'Haese, Pierre-François

    2014-01-01

    Postoperative programming in deep brain stimulation (DBS) therapy for movement disorders can be challenging and time consuming. Providing the neurologist with tools to visualize the electrode location relative to the patient's anatomy along with models of tissue activation and statistical data can therefore be very helpful. In this study, we evaluate the consistency between neurologists in interpreting and using such information provided by our DBS programming assistance software. Five neurologists experienced in DBS programming were each given a dataset of 29 leads implanted in 17 patients. For each patient, probabilistic maps of stimulation response, anatomical images, models of tissue activation volumes, and electrode positions were presented inside a software framework called CRAnialVault Explorer (CRAVE) developed in house. Consistency between neurologists in optimal contact selection using the software was measured. With only the efficacy map, the average consistency among the five neurologists with respect to the mode and mean of their selections was 97% and 95%, respectively, while these numbers were 93% and 89%, respectively, when both efficacy and an adverse effect map were used simultaneously. Fleiss' kappa statistic also showed very strong agreement among the neurologists (0.87 when using one map and 0.72 when using two maps). Our five neurologists demonstrated high consistency in interpreting information provided by the CRAVE interactive visualization software for DBS postoperative programming assistance. Three of our five neurologists had no prior experience with the software, which suggests that the software has a short learning curve and contact selection is not dependent on familiarity with the program tools. © 2013 Vanderbilt University.

  12. Visual Spatial Attention Training Improve Spatial Attention and Motor Control for Unilateral Neglect Patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Wei; Ji, Xiangtong; Ni, Jun; Ye, Qian; Zhang, Sicong; Chen, Wenli; Bian, Rong; Yu, Cui; Zhang, Wenting; Shen, Guangyu; Machado, Sergio; Yuan, Tifei; Shan, Chunlei

    2015-01-01

    To compare the effect of visual spatial training on the spatial attention to that on motor control and to correlate the improvement of spatial attention to motor control progress after visual spatial training in subjects with unilateral spatial neglect (USN). 9 cases with USN after right cerebral stroke were randomly divided into Conventional treatment group + visual spatial attention and Conventional treatment group. The Conventional treatment group + visual spatial attention received conventional rehabilitation therapy (physical and occupational therapy) and visual spatial attention training (optokinetic stimulation and right half-field eye patching). The Conventional treatment group was only treated with conventional rehabilitation training (physical and occupational therapy). All patients were assessed by behavioral inattention test (BIT), Fugl-Meyer Assessment of motor function (FMA), equilibrium coordination test (ECT) and non-equilibrium coordination test (NCT) before and after 4 weeks treatment. Total scores in both groups (without visual spatial attention/with visual spatial attention) improved significantly (BIT: P=0.021/P=0.000, d=1.667/d=2.116, power=0.69/power=0.98, 95%CI[-0.8839,45.88]/95%CI=[16.96,92.64]; FMA: P=0.002/P=0.000, d=2.521/d=2.700, power=0.93/power=0.98, 95%CI[5.707,30.79]/95%CI=[16.06,53.94]; ECT: P=0.002/ P=0.000, d=2.031/d=1.354, power=0.90/power=0.17, 95%CI[3.380,42.61]/95%CI=[-1.478,39.08]; NCT: P=0.013/P=0.000, d=1.124/d=1.822, power=0.41/power=0.56, 95%CI[-7.980,37.48]/95%CI=[4.798,43.60],) after treatment. Among the 2 groups, the group with visual spatial attention significantly improved in BIT (P=0.003, d=3.103, power=1, 95%CI[15.68,48.92]), FMA of upper extremity (P=0.006, d=2.771, power=1, 95%CI[5.061,20.14]) and NCT (P=0.010, d=2.214, power=0.81-0.90, 95%CI[3.018,15.88]). Correlative analysis shows that the change of BIT scores is positively correlated to the change of FMA total score (r=0.77, Pmotor control functions in

  13. Visual Analytics for Pattern Discovery in Home Care. Clinical Relevance for Quality Improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Radhakrishnan, Kavita; Monsen, Karen A; Bae, Sung-Heui; Zhang, Wenhui

    2016-07-27

    Visualization can reduce the cognitive load of information, allowing users to easily interpret and assess large amounts of data. The purpose of our study was to examine home health data using visual analysis techniques to discover clinically salient associations between patient characteristics with problem-oriented health outcomes of older adult home health patients during the home health service period. Knowledge, Behavior and Status ratings at discharge as well as change from admission to discharge that was coded using the Omaha System was collected from a dataset on 988 de-identified patient data from 15 home health agencies. SPSS Visualization Designer v1.0 was used to visually analyze patterns between independent and outcome variables using heat maps and histograms. Visualizations suggesting clinical salience were tested for significance using correlation analysis. The mean age of the patients was 80 years, with the majority female (66%). Of the 150 visualizations, 69 potentially meaningful patterns were statistically evaluated through bivariate associations, revealing 21 significant associations. Further, 14 associations between episode length and Charlson co-morbidity index mainly with urinary related diagnoses and problems remained significant after adjustment analyses. Through visual analysis, the adverse association of the longer home health episode length and higher Charlson co-morbidity index with behavior or status outcomes for patients with impaired urinary function was revealed. We have demonstrated the use of visual analysis to discover novel patterns that described high-needs subgroups among the older home health patient population. The effective presentation of these data patterns can allow clinicians to identify areas of patient improvement, and time periods that are most effective for implementing home health interventions to improve patient outcomes.

  14. The Influence of the Instruction of Visual Design Principles on Improving Pre-Service Teachers' Visual Literacy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yeh, Hsin-Te; Cheng, Yi-Chia

    2010-01-01

    This study investigated whether the instruction of visual design principles had an influence on pre-service teachers' perception and analysis (interpretation) of visual materials. In addition, the relationships between pre-service teachers' visual intelligence and their perception and analysis (interpretation) of visual materials were also…

  15. Pleasant music improves visual attention in patients with unilateral neglect after stroke.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Mei-Ching; Tsai, Pei-Luen; Huang, Yu-Ting; Lin, Keh-Chung

    2013-01-01

    To investigate whether listening to pleasant music improves visual attention to and awareness of contralesional stimuli in patients with unilateral neglect after stroke. A within-subject design was used with 19 participants with unilateral neglect following a right hemisphere stroke. Participants were tested in three conditions (pleasant music, unpleasant music and white noise) within 1 week. All musical pieces were chosen by the participants. In each condition, participants were asked to complete three sub-tests of the Behavioural Inattention Test (the Star Cancellation Test, the Line Bisection Test and the Picture Scanning test) and a visual exploration task with everyday scenes. Eye movements in the visual exploration task were recorded simultaneously. Mood and arousal induced by different auditory stimuli were assessed using visual analogue scales, heart rate and galvanic skin response. Compared with unpleasant music and white noise, participants rated their moods as more positive and arousal as higher with pleasant music, but also showed significant improvement on all tasks and eye movement data, except the Line Bisection Test. The findings suggest that pleasant music can improve visual attention in patients with unilateral neglect after stroke. Additional research using randomized controlled trials is required to validate these findings.

  16. A continuous improvement process for health providers of victims of domestic violence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swenson-Britt, E; Thornton, J E; Hoppe, S K; Brackley, M H

    2001-10-01

    Health care providers can play an important role in the prevention of domestic violence through established processes of identification, safety assessment, validation, documentation, and referral. In 1998 the Safe Family Project, funded by University Health System (UHS), affiliated with University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, provided for a clinical review of existing services for victims of domestic violence. A subsequent review of the health system's policy and clinical practice supported the need for resources and training and for an improved care process for victims of domestic violence. THE CONTINUOUS IMPROVEMENT PROCESS (CIP) MODEL: UHS adapted the Shewhart cycle of activities popularly referred to as PDSA (plan change, do change, study results, act on results), a systematic, process-focused approach to achieving continuous and measurable improvement, as its CIP model, and it formed a process improvement team. This process led to translation of research findings into best practice guidelines for treatment of domestic violence and staff education. Significant improvements were made in the overall qualitative chart reviews, although the diagnostic coding (using ICD-9 codes and e-codes) did improve. The CIP can be replicated in other settings to improve the care of victims of domestic violence. The CIP effort is being extended to outpatient facilities, and managers have requested that the training manual be replicated and placed throughout UHS as a resource manual. Other activities are intended to improve prevention of domestic violence and intervention when it occurs.

  17. An Internet-Based GIS Platform Providing Data for Visualization and Spatial Analysis of Urbanization in Major Asian and African Cities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hao Gong

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Rapid urbanization in developing countries has been observed to be relatively high in the last two decades, especially in the Asian and African regions. Although many researchers have made efforts to improve the understanding of the urbanization trends of various cities in Asia and Africa, the absence of platforms where local stakeholders can visualize and obtain processed urbanization data for their specific needs or analysis, still remains a gap. In this paper, we present an Internet-based GIS platform called MEGA-WEB. The Platform was developed in view of the urban planning and management challenges in developing countries of Asia and Africa due to the limited availability of data resources, effective tools, and proficiency in data analysis. MEGA-WEB provides online access, visualization, spatial analysis, and data sharing services following a mashup framework of the MEGA-WEB Geo Web Services (GWS, with the third-party map services using HTML5/JavaScript techniques. Through the integration of GIS, remote sensing, geo-modelling, and Internet GIS, several indicators for analyzing urbanization are provided in MEGA-WEB to give diverse perspectives on the urbanization of not only the physical land surface condition, but also the relationships of population, energy use, and the environment. The design, architecture, system functions, and uses of MEGA-WEB are discussed in the paper. The MEGA-WEB project is aimed at contributing to sustainable urban development in developing countries of Asia and Africa.

  18. A pilot study of an acupuncture protocol to improve visual function in retinitis pigmentosa patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bittner, Ava K; Gould, Jeffrey M; Rosenfarb, Andy; Rozanski, Collin; Dagnelie, Gislin

    2014-05-01

    Patients with retinitis pigmentosa are motivated to try complementary or integrative therapies to slow disease progression. Basic science, clinical research and retinitis pigmentosa patients' self-reports support the hypothesis that acupuncture may improve visual function. A prospective, case series, pilot study enrolled 12 adult patients with RP treated at an academic medical centre with a standardised protocol that combined electroacupuncture to the forehead and below the eyes and acupuncture to the body, at 10 half-hour sessions over two weeks. Pre- and post-treatment tests included Early Treatment Diabetic Retinopathy Study visual acuity (VA), Pelli-Robson contrast sensitivity (CS), Goldmann visual fields, and dark-adapted full-field stimulus threshold (FST)(n = 9). Scotopic Sensitivity Tester-1 (SST-1) dark-adaptometry was performed on the last two subjects. Six of 12 subjects had measurable, significant visual function improvements after treatment. Three of nine subjects tested with the FST had a significant 10.3 to 17.5 dB (that is, 13- to 53-fold) improvement in both eyes at one week after acupuncture, maintained for at least 10 to 12 months, which was well outside typical test-retest variability (95% CI: 3-3.5 dB) previously found in retinitis pigmentosa. SST-1 dark-adaptation was shortened in both subjects tested on average by 48.5 per cent at one week (range 36 to 62 per cent across 10 to 30 dB), which was outside typical coefficients of variation of less than 30 per cent previously determined in patients with retinitis pigmentosa and normals. Four of the five subjects with psychophysically measured scotopic sensitivity improvements reported subjective improvements in vision at night or in dark environments. One subject had 0.2 logMAR improvement in VA; another had 0.55 logCS improvement. Another subject developed more than 20 per cent improvement in the area of the Goldmann visual fields. The acupuncture protocol was completed and well tolerated

  19. An Efficient Adaptive Window Size Selection Method for Improving Spectrogram Visualization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shibli Nisar

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Short Time Fourier Transform (STFT is an important technique for the time-frequency analysis of a time varying signal. The basic approach behind it involves the application of a Fast Fourier Transform (FFT to a signal multiplied with an appropriate window function with fixed resolution. The selection of an appropriate window size is difficult when no background information about the input signal is known. In this paper, a novel empirical model is proposed that adaptively adjusts the window size for a narrow band-signal using spectrum sensing technique. For wide-band signals, where a fixed time-frequency resolution is undesirable, the approach adapts the constant Q transform (CQT. Unlike the STFT, the CQT provides a varying time-frequency resolution. This results in a high spectral resolution at low frequencies and high temporal resolution at high frequencies. In this paper, a simple but effective switching framework is provided between both STFT and CQT. The proposed method also allows for the dynamic construction of a filter bank according to user-defined parameters. This helps in reducing redundant entries in the filter bank. Results obtained from the proposed method not only improve the spectrogram visualization but also reduce the computation cost and achieves 87.71% of the appropriate window length selection.

  20. The Role of Visual Learning in Improving Students' High-Order Thinking Skills

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raiyn, Jamal

    2016-01-01

    Various concepts have been introduced to improve students' analytical thinking skills based on problem based learning (PBL). This paper introduces a new concept to increase student's analytical thinking skills based on a visual learning strategy. Such a strategy has three fundamental components: a teacher, a student, and a learning process. The…

  1. The effectiveness of visual simulation training in improving inner circle fielding performance in cricket

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hopwood, M.; Mann, D.L.; Farrow, D.; Neilsen, T.

    2011-01-01

    This study examined the effectiveness of visual-perceptual training for improving fielding performance in cricket. Twelve highly-skilled cricket players completed a video-based decision-making test and an in-situ fielding test before and after a six-week training intervention. During this period,

  2. Autofluorescence imaging for improved visualization of joint structures during arthroscopic surgery

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nguyen, D. T.; van Horssen, P.; van de Giessen, M.; van Leeuwen, Antonius G. J. M.

    2017-01-01

    The purpose of our study is to develop the arthroscopic autofluorescence imaging (AFI) system to improve the visualization during arthroscopic surgery by real-time enhancing the contrast between joint structures with autofluorescence imaging. Its validity was evaluated around the arthroscopic

  3. Provider-Payer Partnerships as an Engine for Continuous Quality Improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balfour, Margaret E; Zinn, Tylar E; Cason, Karena; Fox, Jerimya; Morales, Myra; Berdeja, Cesar; Gray, Jay

    2018-03-01

    The authors describe a quality improvement approach in which a crisis center and a payer collaborate to improve care. Each crisis visit is considered as a potentially missed opportunity for community stabilization. Daily data on crisis visits are sent to the payer for a more up-to-date analysis of trends than is possible with financial claims data, which may lag behind services provided by up to 90 days. Using these trend data, the two organizations collaborate to identify patterns that lead to opportunities for improvement and develop multiple rapid-cycle projects for better management of services, resulting in significant decreases in readmissions and in the number of high utilizers.

  4. Improvement of oral health knowledge in a group of visually impaired students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yalcinkaya, Sebnem Ercalik; Atalay, Turhan

    2006-01-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of a repeated oral health education programme on oral health knowledge and hygiene of visually impaired students. The study was conducted at one of the two visually impaired boarding schools of Istanbul, Turkey. The number of subjects was 65, comprising 28 totally and 37 partially visually impaired students between 7 and 17 years of age. A 24-item verbal questionnaire was developed to record their general health, impairment, the socio-economic profile and education level of their parents, oral health knowledge, sources of information about oral health, awareness of sugar in-take/caries risk, frequency of dental check-ups and oral hygiene habits, as well as any difficulties they experienced thereby. They were given individual training on oral care three times with two-month intervals within the nine-month framework of the programme. To measure the oral hygiene status, plaque index (PI) and gingival index (GI) scores were recorded of all teeth at four sites throughout the sessions. After completion of the programme, the oral health knowledge of the students was evaluated using the same questionnaire to determine the effectiveness of the programme. Statistically significant improvements were found at the level of oral health knowledge and oral hygiene status both in totally and partially visually impaired students at the end of the study (p visually impaired and partially visually impaired students. It was concluded that with an appropriate programme, the oral health knowledge of visually impaired students could be improved. This programme, if conducted on a one-to-one basis, ensures clinical and statistical significance.

  5. Improving parent satisfaction: an intervention to increase neonatal parent?provider communication

    OpenAIRE

    Weiss, S; Goldlust, E; Vaucher, Y E

    2009-01-01

    Objective: The objective of the study was to assess whether a targeted intervention improved the satisfaction of neonatal parents with primary medical provider communication. Study Design: The study design was a survey assessment of parents in a neonatal intensive care unit regarding their satisfaction with physician and nurse practitioner communication. Serial cohorts were surveyed before and after an intervention, including educating providers about family communication, distributing contac...

  6. BioTapestry now provides a web application and improved drawing and layout tools.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paquette, Suzanne M; Leinonen, Kalle; Longabaugh, William J R

    2016-01-01

    Gene regulatory networks (GRNs) control embryonic development, and to understand this process in depth, researchers need to have a detailed understanding of both the network architecture and its dynamic evolution over time and space. Interactive visualization tools better enable researchers to conceptualize, understand, and share GRN models. BioTapestry is an established application designed to fill this role, and recent enhancements released in Versions 6 and 7 have targeted two major facets of the program. First, we introduced significant improvements for network drawing and automatic layout that have now made it much easier for the user to create larger, more organized network drawings. Second, we revised the program architecture so it could continue to support the current Java desktop Editor program, while introducing a new BioTapestry GRN Viewer that runs as a JavaScript web application in a browser. We have deployed a number of GRN models using this new web application. These improvements will ensure that BioTapestry remains viable as a research tool in the face of the continuing evolution of web technologies, and as our understanding of GRN models grows.

  7. Identifying barriers and improving communication between cancer service providers and Aboriginal patients and their families: the perspective of service providers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shahid, Shaouli; Durey, Angela; Bessarab, Dawn; Aoun, Samar M; Thompson, Sandra C

    2013-11-04

    Aboriginal Australians experience poorer outcomes from cancer compared to the non-Aboriginal population. Some progress has been made in understanding Aboriginal Australians' perspectives about cancer and their experiences with cancer services. However, little is known of cancer service providers' (CSPs) thoughts and perceptions regarding Aboriginal patients and their experiences providing optimal cancer care to Aboriginal people. Communication between Aboriginal patients and non-Aboriginal health service providers has been identified as an impediment to good Aboriginal health outcomes. This paper reports on CSPs' views about the factors impairing communication and offers practical strategies for promoting effective communication with Aboriginal patients in Western Australia (WA). A qualitative study involving in-depth interviews with 62 Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal CSPs from across WA was conducted between March 2006-September 2007 and April-October 2011. CSPs were asked to share their experiences with Aboriginal patients and families experiencing cancer. Thematic analysis was carried out. Our analysis was primarily underpinned by the socio-ecological model, but concepts of Whiteness and privilege, and cultural security also guided our analysis. CSPs' lack of knowledge about the needs of Aboriginal people with cancer and Aboriginal patients' limited understanding of the Western medical system were identified as the two major impediments to communication. For effective patient-provider communication, attention is needed to language, communication style, knowledge and use of medical terminology and cross-cultural differences in the concept of time. Aboriginal marginalization within mainstream society and Aboriginal people's distrust of the health system were also key issues impacting on communication. Potential solutions to effective Aboriginal patient-provider communication included recruiting more Aboriginal staff, providing appropriate cultural training for CSPs

  8. Daily Goals Formulation and Enhanced Visualization of Mechanical Ventilation Variance Improves Mechanical Ventilation Score.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walsh, Brian K; Smallwood, Craig; Rettig, Jordan; Kacmarek, Robert M; Thompson, John; Arnold, John H

    2017-03-01

    The systematic implementation of evidence-based practice through the use of guidelines, checklists, and protocols mitigates the risks associated with mechanical ventilation, yet variation in practice remains prevalent. Recent advances in software and hardware have allowed for the development and deployment of an enhanced visualization tool that identifies mechanical ventilation goal variance. Our aim was to assess the utility of daily goal establishment and a computer-aided visualization of variance. This study was composed of 3 phases: a retrospective observational phase (baseline) followed by 2 prospective sequential interventions. Phase I intervention comprised daily goal establishment of mechanical ventilation. Phase II intervention was the setting and monitoring of daily goals of mechanical ventilation with a web-based data visualization system (T3). A single score of mechanical ventilation was developed to evaluate the outcome. The baseline phase evaluated 130 subjects, phase I enrolled 31 subjects, and phase II enrolled 36 subjects. There were no differences in demographic characteristics between cohorts. A total of 171 verbalizations of goals of mechanical ventilation were completed in phase I. The use of T3 increased by 87% from phase I. Mechanical ventilation score improved by 8.4% in phase I and 11.3% in phase II from baseline ( P = .032). The largest effect was in the low risk V T category, with a 40.3% improvement from baseline in phase I, which was maintained at 39% improvement from baseline in phase II ( P = .01). mechanical ventilation score was 9% higher on average in those who survived. Daily goal formation and computer-enhanced visualization of mechanical ventilation variance were associated with an improvement in goal attainment by evidence of an improved mechanical ventilation score. Further research is needed to determine whether improvements in mechanical ventilation score through a targeted, process-oriented intervention will lead to

  9. Factors predicting visual improvement post pars plana vitrectomy for proliferative diabetic retinopathy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Evelyn Tai Li Min

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available AIM: To identify factors predicting visual improvement post vitrectomy for sequelae of proliferative diabetic retinopathy(PDR.METHODS: This was a retrospective analysis of pars plana vitrectomy indicated for sequelae of PDR from Jan. to Dec. 2014 in Hospital Sultanah Bahiyah, Alor Star, Kedah, Malaysia. Data collected included patient demographics, baseline visual acuity(VAand post-operative logMAR best corrected VA at 1y. Data analysis was performed with IBM SPSS Statistics Version 22.0. RESULTS: A total of 103 patients were included. The mean age was 51.2y. On multivariable analysis, each pre-operative positive deviation of 1 logMAR from a baseline VA of 0 logMAR was associated with a post-operative improvement of 0.859 logMAR(P0.001. Likewise, an attached macula pre-operatively was associated with a 0.374(P=0.003logMAR improvement post vitrectomy. Absence of iris neovascularisation and absence of post-operative complications were associated with a post vitrectomy improvement in logMAR by 1.126(P=0.001and 0.377(P=0.005respectively. Absence of long-acting intraocular tamponade was associated with a 0.302(P=0.010improvement of logMAR post vitrectomy.CONCLUSION: Factors associated with visual improvement after vitrectomy are poor pre-operative VA, an attached macula, absence of iris neovascularisation, absence of post-operative complications and abstaining from use of long-acting intraocular tamponade. A thorough understanding of the factors predicting visual improvement will facilitate decision-making in vitreoretinal surgery.

  10. Real-time video communication improves provider performance in a simulated neonatal resuscitation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fang, Jennifer L; Carey, William A; Lang, Tara R; Lohse, Christine M; Colby, Christopher E

    2014-11-01

    To determine if a real-time audiovisual link with a neonatologist, termed video-assisted resuscitation or VAR, improves provider performance during a simulated neonatal resuscitation scenario. Using high-fidelity simulation, 46 study participants were presented with a neonatal resuscitation scenario. The control group performed independently, while the intervention group utilized VAR. Time to effective ventilation was compared using Wilcoxon rank sum tests. Providers' use of the corrective steps for ineffective ventilation per the NRP algorithm was compared using Cochran-Armitage trend tests. The time needed to establish effective ventilation was significantly reduced in the intervention group when compared to the control group (mean time 2 min 42 s versus 4 min 11 s, presuscitation scenario significantly reduces the time to establish effective ventilation and improves provider adherence to NRP guidelines. This technology may be a means for regional centers to support local providers during a neonatal emergency to improve patient safety and improve neonatal outcomes. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. The effects of providing visual feedback and auditory stimulation using a robotic device on balance and gait abilities in persons with stroke: a pilot study

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Jae Ho Park; ; Yijung Chung

    2016-01-01

    Objective: The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of providing visual feedback and auditory stimulation using a robotic device on balance and gait abilities in stroke patients. Design...

  12. Music training improves verbal but not visual memory: cross-sectional and longitudinal explorations in children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ho, Yim-Chi; Cheung, Mei-Chun; Chan, Agnes S

    2003-07-01

    The hypothesis that music training can improve verbal memory was tested in children. The results showed that children with music training demonstrated better verbal but not visual memory than did their counterparts without such training. When these children were followed up after a year, those who had begun or continued music training demonstrated significant verbal memory improvement. Students who discontinued the training did not show any improvement. Contrary to the differences in verbal memory between the groups, their changes in visual memory were not significantly different. Consistent with previous findings for adults (A. S. Chan, Y. Ho, & M. Cheung, 1998), the results suggest that music training systematically affects memory processing in accordance with possible neuroanatomical modifications in the left temporal lobe.

  13. Trifocal intraocular lenses: a comparison of the visual performance and quality of vision provided by two different lens designs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gundersen KG

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Kjell G Gundersen,1 Rick Potvin2 1IFocus Øyeklinikk AS, Haugesund, Norway; 2Science in Vision, Akron, NY, USA Purpose: To compare two different diffractive trifocal intraocular lens (IOL designs, evaluating longer-term refractive outcomes, visual acuity (VA at various distances, low contrast VA and quality of vision.Patients and methods: Patients with binocularly implanted trifocal IOLs of two different designs (FineVision [FV] and Panoptix [PX] were evaluated 6 months to 2 years after surgery. Best distance-corrected and uncorrected VA were tested at distance (4 m, intermediate (80 and 60 cm and near (40 cm. A binocular defocus curve was collected with the subject’s best distance correction in place. The preferred reading distance was determined along with the VA at that distance. Low contrast VA at distance was also measured. Quality of vision was measured with the National Eye Institute Visual Function Questionnaire near subset and the Quality of Vision questionnaire.Results: Thirty subjects in each group were successfully recruited. The binocular defocus curves differed only at vergences of −1.0 D (FV better, P=0.02, −1.5 and −2.00 D (PX better, P<0.01 for both. Best distance-corrected and uncorrected binocular vision were significantly better for the PX lens at 60 cm (P<0.01 with no significant differences at other distances. The preferred reading distance was between 42 and 43 cm for both lenses, with the VA at the preferred reading distance slightly better with the PX lens (P=0.04. There were no statistically significant differences by lens for low contrast VA (P=0.1 or for quality of vision measures (P>0.3.Conclusion: Both trifocal lenses provided excellent distance, intermediate and near vision, but several measures indicated that the PX lens provided better intermediate vision at 60 cm. This may be important to users of tablets and other handheld devices. Quality of vision appeared similar between the two lens designs

  14. Communication training improves patient-centered provider behavior and screening for soldiers' mental health concerns.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Douglas, Susan R; Vides de Andrade, Ana Regina; Boyd, Stephanie; Leslie, Melanie; Webb, Lynn; Davis, Lauren; Fraine, Melissa; Frazer, Nicole L; Hargraves, Ryan; Bickman, Leonard

    2016-07-01

    To evaluate the effectiveness of patient-centered communication training for military providers who conduct post-deployment health screening. The half-day interactive workshop included simulated Soldier patients using video technology. Using a quasi-experimental design, all health care providers at four military treatment facilities were recruited for data collection during a four- to nine-day site visit (23 trained providers, 28 providers in the control group, and one provider declined to participate). All Soldiers were eligible to participate and were blinded to provider training status. Immediately after screening encounters, providers reported on their identification of mental health concerns and Soldiers reported on provider communication behaviors resulting in 1,400 matched pairs. Electronic health records were also available for 26,005 Soldiers. The workshop was found to increase (1) providers' patient-centered communication behaviors as evaluated by Soldiers; (2) provider identification of Soldier mental health concerns; and (3), related health outcomes including provision of education and referral to a confidential counseling resource. Results are promising, but with small effect sizes and study limitations, further research is warranted. A brief intensive workshop on patient-centered communication tailored to the military screening context is feasible and may improve key outcomes. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Improving UGV teleoperation performance using novel visualization techniques and manual interfaces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vozar, Steven; Tilbury, Dawn M.

    2012-06-01

    Unmanned ground vehicles (UGVs) are well-suited to a variety of tasks that are dangerous or repetitive for humans to perform. Despite recent advances, UGVs still suffer from reliability issues, and human operation failures have been identified as one root cause of UGV system failure. However, most literature relevant to UGV reliability does not address the effects of human errors or the user interface. Our previous work investigated the issue of user situational awareness and sense of presence in the robot workspace by implementing a Mixed Reality interface featuring a first-person video feed with an Augmented Reality overlay and a third-person Virtual Reality display. The interface was evaluated in a series of user tests in which users manually controlled a UGV with a manipulator arm using traditional input modalities including a computer mouse, keyboard and gamepad. In this study, we learned that users found it challenging to mentally map commands from the manual inputs to the robot arm behavior. Also, switching between control modalities seemed to add to the cognitive load during teleoperation tasks. A master-slave style manual controller can provide an intuitive one-to-one mapping from user input to robot pose, and has the potential to improve both operator situational awareness for teleoperation tasks and decrease mission completion time. This paper describes the design and implementation of a teleoperated UGV with a Mixed Reality visualization interface and a master-slave controller that is suitable for teleoperated mobile manipulation tasks.

  16. Stroboscopic visual training improves information encoding in short-term memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Appelbaum, L Gregory; Cain, Matthew S; Schroeder, Julia E; Darling, Elise F; Mitroff, Stephen R

    2012-11-01

    The visual system has developed to transform an undifferentiated and continuous flow of information into discrete and manageable representations, and this ability rests primarily on the uninterrupted nature of the input. Here we explore the impact of altering how visual information is accumulated over time by assessing how intermittent vision influences memory retention. Previous work has shown that intermittent, or stroboscopic, visual training (i.e., practicing while only experiencing snapshots of vision) can enhance visual-motor control and visual cognition, yet many questions remain unanswered about the mechanisms that are altered. In the present study, we used a partial-report memory paradigm to assess the possible changes in visual memory following training under stroboscopic conditions. In Experiment 1, the memory task was completed before and immediately after a training phase, wherein participants engaged in physical activities (e.g., playing catch) while wearing either specialized stroboscopic eyewear or transparent control eyewear. In Experiment 2, an additional group of participants underwent the same stroboscopic protocol but were delayed 24 h between training and assessment, so as to measure retention. In comparison to the control group, both stroboscopic groups (immediate and delayed retest) revealed enhanced retention of information in short-term memory, leading to better recall at longer stimulus-to-cue delays (640-2,560 ms). These results demonstrate that training under stroboscopic conditions has the capacity to enhance some aspects of visual memory, that these faculties generalize beyond the specific tasks that were trained, and that trained improvements can be maintained for at least a day.

  17. Does Provider Self-Reporting of Etiquette Behaviors Improve Patient Experience? A Randomized Controlled Trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siddiqui, Zishan; Qayyum, Rehan; Bertram, Amanda; Durkin, Nowella; Kebede, Sosena; Ponor, Lucia; Oduyebo, Ibironke; Allen, Lisa; Brotman, Daniel J

    2017-06-01

    There is a glaring lack of published evidence-based strategies to improve the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS) patient experience scores on the physician domain. Strategies that have been used are resource intensive and difficult to sustain. We hypothesized that prompting providers to assess their own etiquette-based practices every 2 weeks over the course of 1 year would improve patient experience on the physician domain. Randomized controlled trial. 4 acute care hospitals. Hospitalists. Hospitalists were randomized to the study or the control arm. The study arm was prompted every 2 weeks for 12 months to report how frequently they engaged in 7 best-practice bedside etiquette behaviors. Control arm participants received similarly worded questions on quality improvement behaviors. Provider experience scores were calculated from the physician HCAHPS and Press Ganey survey provider items. Physicians reported high rates of etiquette-based behavior at baseline, and this changed modestly over the study period. Self-reported etiquette behaviors were not associated with experience scores. The difference in difference analysis of the baseline and postintervention physician experience scores between the intervention arm and the control arm was not statistically significant (P = 0.71). In this 12-month study, biweekly reflection and reporting of best-practice bedside etiquette behaviors did not result in significant improvement on physician domain experience scores. It is likely that hospitalists' self-assessment of their bedside etiquette may not reflect patient perception of these behaviors. Furthermore, hospitalists may be resistant to improvement in this area since they rate themselves highly at baseline. Journal of Hospital Medicine 2017;12:402-406.

  18. Visual evoked potentials (VEP and visual acuity improvement after cytidine 52 -diphosphocholine (CDP-Choline therapy in amblyopic patient

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Regina Halfeld Furtado de Mendonça

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Citicoline may be used in many neurological disorders. Combined treatment of citicoline with patching in amblyopia has previously been researched. The purpose of this paper is to illustrate the effect of citicoline in non-patching amblyopic patient. A 11-year-old amblyopic boy underwent complete ophthalmological examinations, including VEP with flash and pattern stimulus. Two averages of 100 sweep were performed for flash stimulus. Pattern reversal stimulus obtained with high contrast was performed with 60', 30' and 15' checks stimuli. The VEP was repeated 90 days later after a therapy with citicoline and vitamin and the results compared with the responses of the previous recording session. The visual acuity (VA was 0,7 in the RE and 1,0 in the LE. The VEP pattern amplitude was normal in both eyes. Delayed in latency was detected for all spatial frequency stimulus (SFS in the RE. Delay in latency was detected only for high SFS in the LE. After the treatment, the VA was 1,0 in both eyes. The latency was normalized with low SFS on the RE and with high SFS on the LE. The flash VEP was normal before and after the therapy. In conclusion, the citicoline demonstrated that it was effective in the treatment of amblyopic eye without patching. The VA and the VEP latency improvement demonstrated that the citicoline enhance the transmission of the electric impulse from retina to visual cortex. Further research is required to understand the immediate and long-term effect of coline treatment in amblyopic patients.

  19. Improving the visualization and detection of tissue folds in whole slide images through color enhancement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bautista, Pinky A; Yagi, Yukako

    2010-11-29

    The objective of this paper is to improve the visualization and detection of tissue folds, which are prominent among tissue slides, from the pre-scan image of a whole slide image by introducing a color enhancement method that enables the differentiation between fold and non-fold image pixels. The weighted difference between the color saturation and luminance of the image pixels is used as shifting factor to the original RGB color of the image. Application of the enhancement method to hematoxylin and eosin (H&E) stained images improves the visualization of tissue folds regardless of the colorimetric variations in the images. Detection of tissue folds after application of the enhancement also improves but the presence of nuclei, which are also stained dark like the folds, was found to sometimes affect the detection accuracy. The presence of tissue artifacts could affect the quality of whole slide images, especially that whole slide scanners select the focus points from the pre-scan image wherein the artifacts are indistinguishable from real tissue area. We have a presented in this paper an enhancement scheme that improves the visualization and detection of tissue folds from pre-scan images. Since the method works on the simulated pre-scan images its integration to the actual whole slide imaging process should also be possible.

  20. Significant improvement in dynamic visual acuity after cataract surgery: a promising potential parameter for functional vision.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ao, Mingxin; Li, Xuemin; Huang, Chen; Hou, Zhiqiang; Qiu, Weiqiang; Wang, Wei

    2014-01-01

    Dynamic visual acuity (DVA) is a relatively independent parameter for evaluating the ability to distinguish details of a moving target. The present study has been designed to discuss the extent to which age-related cataract impacts DVA in elderly individuals and to determine whether it could be restored after bilateral phacoemulsification combined with intraocular lens implantation surgery. Twenty-six elderly cataract patients scheduled for binocular cataract surgery and 30 elderly volunteers without cataract were enrolled in the study. DVA at 15, 30, 60 and 90 degree per second (dps) was assessed, and velocity-dependent visual acuity decreases between consecutive speed levels were calculated. Compared with the control group, the patient group exhibited significantly worse DVA performance at all speed levels (pDVA performance at every speed level in the patient group clearly improved (pDVA was more pronounced than the improvement in static visual acuity (p15 dps = 0.001 and pDVA was more severe than its effects on static visual acuity. After cataract surgery, not only static vision of the patients was restored markedly, but also the dynamic vision. DVA could be an important adjunct to the current evaluation system of functional vision, thereby meriting additional attention in clinical assessment.

  1. Visual field

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perimetry; Tangent screen exam; Automated perimetry exam; Goldmann visual field exam; Humphrey visual field exam ... Confrontation visual field exam. This is a quick and basic check of the visual field. The health care provider ...

  2. Microperimetric Biofeedback Training Improved Visual Acuity after Successful Macular Hole Surgery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tomoko Ueda-Consolvo

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Purpose. To evaluate the efficacy of setting a preferred retinal locus relocation target (PRT and performing Macular Integrity Assessment (MAIA biofeedback training in patients showing insufficient recovery of best corrected visual acuity (BCVA despite successful closure of an idiopathic macular hole (MH. Methods. Retrospective interventional case series. Nine eyes of 9 consecutive patients with the decimal BCVA of less than 0.6 at more than 3 months after successful MH surgery were included. A PRT was chosen based on MAIA microperimetry and the patients underwent MAIA biofeedback training. BCVA, reading speed, fixation stability, and 63% bivariate contour ellipse area (BCEA were evaluated before and after the training. Statistical analysis was carried out using paired Student’s t-test. Results. PRT was chosen on the nasal side of the closed MH fovea in 8 patients. After the MAIA training, BCVA improved in all patients. The mean logMAR value of BCVA significantly improved from 0.33 to 0.12 (p=0.007. Reading speed improved in all patients (p=0.29, fixation stability improved in 5 patients (p=0.70, and 63% BCEA improved in 7 patients (p=0.21, although these improvements were not statistically significant. Conclusion. MAIA biofeedback training improved visual acuity in patients with insufficient recovery of BCVA after successful MH surgery.

  3. A mindfulness course decreases burnout and improves well-being among healthcare providers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goodman, Matthew J; Schorling, John B

    2012-01-01

    Healthcare providers are under increasing stress and work-related burnout has become common. Mindfulness-based interventions have a potential role in decreasing stress and burnout. The purpose of this study was to determine if a continuing education course based on mindfulness-based stress reduction could decrease burnout and improve mental well-being among healthcare providers, from different professions. This was a pre-post observational study conducted in a university medical center. A total of 93 healthcare providers, including physicians from multiple specialties, nurses, psychologists, and social workers who practiced in both university and community settings, participated. The intervention was a continuing education course based on mindfulness-based stress reduction that met 2.5 hours a week for 8 weeks plus a 7-hour retreat. The classes included training in four types of formal mindfulness practices, including the body scan, mindful movement, walking meditation and sitting meditation, as well as discussion focusing on the application of mindfulness at work. The course was offered 11 times over 6 years. The main outcome measures were work-related burnout as measured by the Maslach Burnout Inventory and self-perceived mental and physical well-being as measured by the SF-12v2. Maslach Burnout Inventory scores improved significantly from before to after the course for both physicians and other healthcare providers for the Emotional Exhaustion (p burnout scores and mental well-being for a broad range of healthcare providers.

  4. A management framework for training providers to improve skills development in the workplace

    OpenAIRE

    2011-01-01

    D.Ed. A skills revolution was launched in the South African workplace by the Department of Labour in 1998. Various skills development legislation were introduced to meet international standards, redress skills imbalances, curb skills shortages and improve the general skills in the current workforce. Training providers were the drivers of workplace training, yet are now displaced by skills authorities, such as the SET As, the ETQAs and SAQA. While the custody of skills development is placed...

  5. [Efficacy of topical ketorolac for improving visual function after photocoagulation in diabetic patients with focal macular edema].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Razo Blanco-Hernández, Dulce Milagros; Lima-Gómez, Virgilio; Asbun-Bojalil, Juan

    2014-01-01

    Photocoagulation reduces the incidence of visual loss in diabetic patients with focal macular edema, but it can induce it for Efficacy of topical ketorolac for improving visual function after photocoagulation in diabetic patients with focal macular edema 6 weeks after treatment and produces visual improvement in some cases. Topical ketorolac may reduce the inflammation caused by photocoagulation and improve visual outcome. To determine the efficacy of topical ketorolac for improving visual function after photocoagulation in diabetic patients with focal macular edema. An experimental, comparative, prospective, longitudinal study in diabetic patients with focal macular edema was conducted. Eyes were randomized into two groups of topical treatment for 3 weeks after photocoagulation (A: ketorolac, B: placebo). Best corrected visual acuity before and after treatment was compared in each group (paired t test), and the proportion of eyes with visual improvement was compared between groups (χ(2)). The evaluation was repeated after stratifying for initial visual acuity (≥ 0.5, visual acuity changed from 0.50 to 0.58 (p= 0.003), and from 0.55 to 0.55 in group B (n= 59, p= 0.83); mean percent change was 22.3% in group A and 3.5% in group B (p= 0.03). Visual improvement was identified in 25 eyes from group A (54.3%) and 19 from group B (32.2%, p= 0.019, RR 1.65); the difference only persisted when initial visual acuity was ≥ 0.5 (10 [40%], group A, 5 [14.7%], group B, p= 0.02, RR 2.72). Topical ketorolac was more effective than placebo to improve best corrected visual acuity in diabetic patients with focal macular edema.

  6. The Improved SVM Multi Objects' Identification For the Uncalibrated Visual Servoing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Min Wang

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available For the assembly of multi micro objects in micromanipulation, the first task is to identify multi micro parts. We present an improved support vector machine algorithm, which employs invariant moments based edge extraction to obtain feature attribute and then presents a heuristic attribute reduction algorithm based on rough set's discernibility matrix to obtain attribute reduction, with using support vector machine to identify and classify the targets. The visual servoing is the second task. For avoiding the complicated calibration of intrinsic parameter of camera, We apply an improved broyden's method to estimate the image jacobian matrix online, which employs chebyshev polynomial to construct a cost function to approximate the optimization value, obtaining a fast convergence for online estimation. Last, a two DOF visual controller based fuzzy adaptive PD control law for micro-manipulation is presented. The experiments of micro-assembly of micro parts in microscopes confirm that the proposed methods are effective and feasible.

  7. Efficiency and hospital effectiveness in improving Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems ratings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Amin, Mona; Makarem, Suzanne C; Rosko, Michael

    2016-01-01

    Efficiency has emerged as a central goal to the operations of health care organizations. There are two competing perspectives on the relationship between efficiency and organizational performance. Some argue that organizational slack is a waste and that efficiency contributes to organizational performance, whereas others maintain that slack acts as a buffer, allowing organizations to adapt to environmental demands and contributing to organizational performance. As value-based purchasing becomes more prevalent, health care organizations are incented to become more efficient and, at the same time, improve their patients' experiences and outcomes. Unused slack resources might facilitate the timely implementation of these improvements. Building on previous research on organizational slack and inertia, we test whether efficiency and other organizational factors predict organizational effectiveness in improving Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS) ratings. We rely on data from the American Hospital Association and HCAHPS. We estimate hospital cost-efficiency by Stochastic Frontier Analysis and use regression analysis to determine whether efficiency, competition, hospital size, and other organizational factors are significant predictors of hospital effectiveness. Our findings indicate that efficiency and hospital size have a significant negative association with organizational ability to improve HCAHPS ratings. Although achieving organizational efficiency is necessary for health care organizations, given the changes that are currently occurring in the U.S. health care system, it is important for health care managers to maintain a certain level of slack to respond to environmental demands and have the resources needed to improve their performance.

  8. Novel combined patient instruction and discharge summary tool improves timeliness of documentation and outpatient provider satisfaction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilliam, Meredith; Krein, Sarah L; Belanger, Karen; Fowler, Karen E; Dimcheff, Derek E; Solomon, Gabriel

    2017-01-01

    Background: Incomplete or delayed access to discharge information by outpatient providers and patients contributes to discontinuity of care and poor outcomes. Objective: To evaluate the effect of a new electronic discharge summary tool on the timeliness of documentation and communication with outpatient providers. Methods: In June 2012, we implemented an electronic discharge summary tool at our 145-bed university-affiliated Veterans Affairs hospital. The tool facilitates completion of a comprehensive discharge summary note that is available for patients and outpatient medical providers at the time of hospital discharge. Discharge summary note availability, outpatient provider satisfaction, and time between the decision to discharge a patient and discharge note completion were all evaluated before and after implementation of the tool. Results: The percentage of discharge summary notes completed by the time of first post-discharge clinical contact improved from 43% in February 2012 to 100% in September 2012 and was maintained at 100% in 2014. A survey of 22 outpatient providers showed that 90% preferred the new summary and 86% found it comprehensive. Despite increasing required documentation, the time required to discharge a patient, from physician decision to discharge note completion, improved from 5.6 h in 2010 to 4.1 h in 2012 (p = 0.04), and to 2.8 h in 2015 (p discharge summary tool improved the timeliness and comprehensiveness of discharge information as needed for the delivery of appropriate, high-quality follow-up care, without adversely affecting the efficiency of the discharge process. PMID:28491308

  9. Elbow arthroscopy: a new setup to avoid visual paradox and improve triangulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sinha, Apurv; Pydah, Satya Kanth V; Webb, Mark

    2013-05-01

    Elbow arthroscopy is a useful diagnostic and therapeutic tool for various conditions. Conventional arthroscopy with the patient in the prone or lateral position where the screen is placed on the opposite side makes it difficult to interpret the image, results in visual paradox, and is associated with difficult triangulation. We present a modified setup for the operating room to help eliminate these problems and improve triangulation.

  10. Human retinal gene therapy for Leber congenital amaurosis shows advancing retinal degeneration despite enduring visual improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cideciyan, Artur V; Jacobson, Samuel G; Beltran, William A; Sumaroka, Alexander; Swider, Malgorzata; Iwabe, Simone; Roman, Alejandro J; Olivares, Melani B; Schwartz, Sharon B; Komáromy, András M; Hauswirth, William W; Aguirre, Gustavo D

    2013-02-05

    Leber congenital amaurosis (LCA) associated with retinal pigment epithelium-specific protein 65 kDa (RPE65) mutations is a severe hereditary blindness resulting from both dysfunction and degeneration of photoreceptors. Clinical trials with gene augmentation therapy have shown partial reversal of the dysfunction, but the effects on the degeneration are not known. We evaluated the consequences of gene therapy on retinal degeneration in patients with RPE65-LCA and its canine model. In untreated RPE65-LCA patients, there was dysfunction and degeneration of photoreceptors, even at the earliest ages. Examined serially over years, the outer photoreceptor nuclear layer showed progressive thinning. Treated RPE65-LCA showed substantial visual improvement in the short term and no detectable decline from this new level over the long term. However, retinal degeneration continued to progress unabated. In RPE65-mutant dogs, the first one-quarter of their lifespan showed only dysfunction, and there was normal outer photoreceptor nuclear layer thickness retina-wide. Dogs treated during the earlier dysfunction-only stage showed improved visual function and dramatic protection of treated photoreceptors from degeneration when measured 5-11 y later. Dogs treated later during the combined dysfunction and degeneration stage also showed visual function improvement, but photoreceptor loss continued unabated, the same as in human RPE65-LCA. The results suggest that, in RPE65 disease treatment, protection from visual function deterioration cannot be assumed to imply protection from degeneration. The effects of gene augmentation therapy are complex and suggest a need for a combinatorial strategy in RPE65-LCA to not only improve function in the short term but also slow retinal degeneration in the long term.

  11. Improvement in distance and near visual acuities using low vision devices in diabetic retinopathy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarika Gopalakrishnan

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: The aim of this study is to elucidate the causes and level of visual impairment (VI in patients with different pathologies of diabetic retinopathy (DR who presented to a low vision care (LVC clinic, to analyze the type of distant and near devices prescribed to them and the visual benefits thereof. Methods: A retrospective chart review was done for 100 consecutive patients with DR who were referred to the LVC clinic from June 2015 to June 2016. The reason for referral was assessed from the electronic medical records and available fundus photographs, fundus fluorescein angiograms, and optical coherence tomography images by a retina specialist. The details of low-vision devices and subsequent improvements were noted. Results: Of the 100 patients, 52% had moderate VI, 19% mild VI, 16% severe VI, and 13% had profound VI or blindness. The most commonly prescribed low vision device was half-eye spectacles (38.4%. The pathologies which had statistically significant improvement (P < 0.05 in distance vision with low vision devices were DR with disc pallor (4.4% improvement, ischemic maculopathy (11.9% improvement, and plaque of hard exudate (10.1% improvement. However, in all pathologies, there was statistically significant improvement (P < 0.05 in near vision. Conclusion: Usually, the patients with DR presented to the LVC clinic with moderate VI. The use of low vision devices can help these patients in cases where medical and surgical treatment have no or a limited role in restoring useful vision.

  12. Imagining Replications: Graphical Prediction & Discrete Visualizations Improve Recall & Estimation of Effect Uncertainty.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hullman, Jessica; Kay, Matthew; Kim, Yea-Seul; Shrestha, Samana

    2017-08-29

    People often have erroneous intuitions about the results of uncertain processes, such as scientific experiments. Many uncertainty visualizations assume considerable statistical knowledge, but have been shown to prompt erroneous conclusions even when users possess this knowledge. Active learning approaches been shown to improve statistical reasoning, but are rarely applied in visualizing uncertainty in scientific reports. We present a controlled study to evaluate the impact of an interactive, graphical uncertainty prediction technique for communicating uncertainty in experiment results. Using our technique, users sketch their prediction of the uncertainty in experimental effects prior to viewing the true sampling distribution from an experiment. We find that having a user graphically predict the possible effects from experiment replications is an effective way to improve one's ability to make predictions about replications of new experiments. Additionally, visualizing uncertainty as a set of discrete outcomes, as opposed to a continuous probability distribution, can improve recall of a sampling distribution from a single experiment. Our work has implications for various applications where it is important to elicit peoples' estimates of probability distributions and to communicate uncertainty effectively.

  13. Hydrocortisone Counteracts Adverse Stress Effects on Dual-Task Performance by Improving Visual Sensory Processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weckesser, Lisa J; Alexander, Nina C; Kirschbaum, Clemens; Mennigen, Eva; Miller, Robert

    2016-11-01

    The impact of acute stress on executive processes is commonly attributed to glucocorticoid-induced disruptions of the pFC. However, the occipital cortex seems to express a higher density of glucocorticoid receptors. Consequently, acute stress effects on executive processes could as well be mediated by glucocorticoid (e.g., cortisol)-induced alterations of visual sensory processes. To investigate this alternative route of stress action by demarcating the effects of acute stress and cortisol on executive from those on visual sensory processes, 40 healthy young men completed a standardized stress induction (i.e., the Trier Social Stress Test) and control protocol in two consecutive sessions. In addition, they received either a placebo or hydrocortisone (0.12-mg/kg bodyweight) pill and processed a dual and a partial report task to assess their executive and visual sensory processing abilities, respectively. Hydrocortisone administration improved both partial report and dual-task performance as indicated by increased response accuracies and/or decreased RTs. Intriguingly, the hydrocortisone-induced increase in dual-task performance was completely mediated by its impact on partial report performance (i.e., visual sensory processes). Moreover, RT measures in both tasks shared approximately 26% of variance, which was only in part attributable to hydrocortisone administration (ΔR(2) = 8%). By contrast, acute stress selectively impaired dual-task performance (i.e., executive processes), presumably through an alternative route of action. In summary, the present results suggest that cortisol secretion (as mimicked by hydrocortisone administration) may counteract adverse residual stress effects on executive processes by improving visual sensory processes (e.g., the maintenance and amplification of task-relevant sensory information).

  14. Provider and Patient Directed Financial Incentives to Improve Care and Outcomes for Patients with Diabetes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lorincz, Ilona S.; Lawson, Brittany C. T.

    2012-01-01

    Incentive programs directed at both providers and patients have become increasingly widespread. Pay-for-performance (P4P) where providers receive financial incentives to carry out specific care or improve clinical outcomes has been widely implemented. The existing literature indicates they probably spur initial gains which then level off or partially revert if incentives are withdrawn. The literature also indicates that process measures are easier to influence through P4P programs but that intermediate outcomes such as glucose, blood pressure, and cholesterol control are harder to influence, and the long term impact of P4P programs on health is largely unknown. Programs directed at patients show greater promise as a means to influence patient behavior and intermediate outcomes such as weight loss; however, the evidence for long term effects are lacking. In combination, both patient and provider incentives are potentially powerful tools but whether they are cost-effective has yet to be determined. PMID:23225214

  15. Exploring Service Providers' Perspectives in Improving Childhood Obesity Prevention among CALD Communities in Victoria, Australia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sheila Cyril

    Full Text Available Childhood obesity rates have been increasing disproportionately among disadvantaged communities including culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD migrant groups in Australia due to their poor participation in the available obesity prevention initiatives. We sought to explore service providers' perceptions of the key factors influencing the participation of CALD communities in the existing obesity prevention services and the service requirements needed to improve CALD communities' participation in these services.We conducted a qualitative study using focus group discussions involving fifty-nine service providers from a range of services, who are involved in the health and wellbeing of children from CALD groups living in four socioeconomically disadvantaged areas in Victoria, Australia.Thematic analysis of the data showed three major themes including community-level barriers to CALD engagement in childhood obesity prevention services; service-level barriers to the delivery of these services; and proposed changes to current childhood obesity prevention approaches. Integrating obesity prevention messages within existing programs, better coordination between prevention and treatment services and the establishment of a childhood obesity surveillance system, were some of the important changes suggested by service providers.This study has found that low CALD health literacy, lack of knowledge of cultural barriers among service providers and co-existing deficiencies in the structure and delivery of obesity prevention services negatively impacted the participation of CALD communities in obesity prevention services. Cultural competency training of service providers would improve their understanding of the cultural influences of childhood obesity and incorporate them into the design and development of obesity prevention initiatives. Service providers need to be educated on the pre-migratory health service experiences and health conditions of CALD

  16. Interventions to improve child-parent-medical provider communication: A systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kodjebacheva, Gergana Damianova; Sabo, Tina; Xiong, Janet

    2016-10-01

    Research related to effective communication between children/parents and medical providers is limited. To review interventions seeking to improve communication between children/parents and medical providers. The inclusion criteria were interventions in peer-reviewed articles and dissertations in English. Because of the limited availability of pediatric communication research, no restrictions were placed on the year, design, and length of follow-up of the interventions. Out of 4163 articles in the CINAHL, Cochrane, EMBASE, ERIC, MEDLINE, and PsycINFO databases, 34 met the inclusion criteria. The design, strategies, measurement tools, results, and conflicts of interest of the interventions were reviewed. Most interventions were conducted in the United States, had a small sample size, and used a pre-posttest design. Fifteen were randomized controlled trials (RCTs). The most frequent intervention strategies were role-playing sessions and seminars for medical providers. Standardized children (i.e., fictitious child patients) were frequently used to help train physicians. Most interventions improved providers' interpersonal, patient-centered interviewing skills. Interventions that targeted parents involved booklets and role-playing to encourage questions. They improved parents' satisfaction and communication. An intervention that targeted youth used a video portraying how children can communicate better with physicians. Once the children aged 5-15 years watched the video, they wrote questions for their physicians prior to the medical visit. The experimental group of children had better rapport with physicians and could recall recommendations about medications more often than the control group. More RCTs involving children as active participants are needed. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Significant improvement in dynamic visual acuity after cataract surgery: a promising potential parameter for functional vision.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mingxin Ao

    Full Text Available PURPOSE: Dynamic visual acuity (DVA is a relatively independent parameter for evaluating the ability to distinguish details of a moving target. The present study has been designed to discuss the extent to which age-related cataract impacts DVA in elderly individuals and to determine whether it could be restored after bilateral phacoemulsification combined with intraocular lens implantation surgery. METHODS: Twenty-six elderly cataract patients scheduled for binocular cataract surgery and 30 elderly volunteers without cataract were enrolled in the study. DVA at 15, 30, 60 and 90 degree per second (dps was assessed, and velocity-dependent visual acuity decreases between consecutive speed levels were calculated. RESULTS: Compared with the control group, the patient group exhibited significantly worse DVA performance at all speed levels (p<0.001, and the decreases in velocity-dependent visual acuity were more serious in the patient group at the intervals of 0-15 dps (p<0.001, 15-30 dps (p = 0.007 and 30-60 dps (p = 0.008. Postoperatively, DVA performance at every speed level in the patient group clearly improved (p<0.001 and recovered to levels compatible to the control group. The decrease in visual acuity with increasing speed was less pronounced than during the preoperative phase (p0-15 dps = 0.001, p15-30 dps<0.001 and p30-60 dps = 0.001 and became similar to that of the control group. The postoperative visual benefit regarding DVA was more pronounced than the improvement in static visual acuity (p15 dps = 0.001 and p<0.001 at 30 dps, 60 dps and 90 dps. CONCLUSIONS: The impact of age-related cataract on DVA was more severe than its effects on static visual acuity. After cataract surgery, not only static vision of the patients was restored markedly, but also the dynamic vision. DVA could be an important adjunct to the current evaluation system of functional vision, thereby meriting additional attention in clinical assessment.

  18. Low-level laser therapy improves visual acuity in adolescent and adult patients with amblyopia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivandic, Boris T; Ivandic, Tomislav

    2012-03-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of low-level laser therapy (LLLT) on visual acuity in adolescent and adult patients with amblyopia. Currently, amblyopia can be treated successfully only in children. In this single-blinded, placebo-controlled study, 178 patients (mean age 46.8 years) with amblyopia caused by ametropia (110 eyes) or strabismus (121 eyes) were included. For LLLT, the area of the macula was irradiated through the conjunctiva from 1 cm distance for 30 sec with laser light (780 nm, 292 Hz, 1:1 duty cycle; average power 7.5 mW; spot area 3 mm(2)). The treatment was repeated on average 3.5 times, resulting in a mean total dose of 0.77 J/cm(2). No occlusion was applied, and no additional medication was administered. Best corrected distant visual acuity was determined using Snellen projection optotypes. In 12 patients (12 eyes), the multifocal visual evoked potential (M-VEP) was recorded. A control group of 20 patients (20 eyes) received mock treatment. Visual acuity improved in ∼90% of the eyes treated with LLLT (pamblyopia caused by ametropia and strabismus, respectively. The treatment effect was maintained for at least 6 months. The mean M-VEP amplitude increased by 1207 nV (pamblyopia caused by ametropia or strabismus.

  19. Long-term musical training may improve different forms of visual attention ability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodrigues, Ana Carolina; Loureiro, Maurício Alves; Caramelli, Paulo

    2013-08-01

    Many studies have suggested that structural and functional cerebral neuroplastic processes result from long-term musical training, which in turn may produce cognitive differences between musicians and non-musicians. We aimed to investigate whether intensive, long-term musical practice is associated with improvements in three different forms of visual attention ability: selective, divided and sustained attention. Musicians from symphony orchestras (n=38) and non-musicians (n=38), who were comparable in age, gender and education, were submitted to three neuropsychological tests, measuring reaction time and accuracy. Musicians showed better performance relative to non-musicians on four variables of the three visual attention tests, and such an advantage could not solely be explained by better sensorimotor integration. Moreover, in the group of musicians, significant correlations were observed between the age at the commencement of musical studies and reaction time in all visual attention tests. The results suggest that musicians present augmented ability in different forms of visual attention, thus illustrating the possible cognitive benefits of long-term musical training. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Expertise for upright faces improves the precision but not the capacity of visual working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lorenc, Elizabeth S; Pratte, Michael S; Angeloni, Christopher F; Tong, Frank

    2014-10-01

    Considerable research has focused on how basic visual features are maintained in working memory, but little is currently known about the precision or capacity of visual working memory for complex objects. How precisely can an object be remembered, and to what extent might familiarity or perceptual expertise contribute to working memory performance? To address these questions, we developed a set of computer-generated face stimuli that varied continuously along the dimensions of age and gender, and we probed participants' memories using a method-of-adjustment reporting procedure. This paradigm allowed us to separately estimate the precision and capacity of working memory for individual faces, on the basis of the assumptions of a discrete capacity model, and to assess the impact of face inversion on memory performance. We found that observers could maintain up to four to five items on average, with equally good memory capacity for upright and upside-down faces. In contrast, memory precision was significantly impaired by face inversion at every set size tested. Our results demonstrate that the precision of visual working memory for a complex stimulus is not strictly fixed but, instead, can be modified by learning and experience. We find that perceptual expertise for upright faces leads to significant improvements in visual precision, without modifying the capacity of working memory.

  1. Primary Care Provider Perceptions of Colorectal Cancer Screening Barriers: Implications for Designing Quality Improvement Interventions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer M. Weiss

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Aims. Colorectal cancer (CRC screening is underutilized. Increasing CRC screening rates requires interventions targeting multiple barriers at each level of the healthcare organization (patient, provider, and system. We examined groups of primary care providers (PCPs based on perceptions of screening barriers and the relationship to CRC screening rates to inform approaches for conducting barrier assessments prior to designing and implementing quality improvement interventions. Methods. We conducted a retrospective cohort study linking EHR and survey data. PCPs with complete survey responses for questions addressing CRC screening barriers were included (N=166 PCPs; 39,430 patients eligible for CRC screening. Cluster analysis identified groups of PCPs. Multivariate logistic regression estimated odds ratios and 95% confidence intervals for predictors of membership in one of the PCP groups. Results. We found two distinct groups: (1 PCPs identifying multiple barriers to CRC screening at patient, provider, and system levels (N=75 and (2 PCPs identifying no major barriers to screening (N=91. PCPs in the top half of CRC screening performance were more likely to identify multiple barriers than the bottom performers (OR, 4.14; 95% CI, 2.43–7.08. Conclusions. High-performing PCPs can more effectively identify CRC screening barriers. Targeting high-performers when conducting a barrier assessment is a novel approach to assist in designing quality improvement interventions for CRC screening.

  2. Playing shooter and driving videogames improves top-down guidance in visual search.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Sijing; Spence, Ian

    2013-05-01

    Playing action videogames is known to improve visual spatial attention and related skills. Here, we showed that playing action videogames also improves classic visual search, as well as the ability to locate targets in a dual search that mimics certain aspects of an action videogame. In Experiment 1A, first-person shooter (FPS) videogame players were faster than nonplayers in both feature search and conjunction search, and in Experiment 1B, they were faster and more accurate in a peripheral search and identification task while simultaneously performing a central search. In Experiment 2, we showed that 10 h of play could improve the performance of nonplayers on each of these tasks. Three different genres of videogames were used for training: two action games and a 3-D puzzle game. Participants who played an action game (either an FPS or a driving game) achieved greater gains on all search tasks than did those who trained using the puzzle game. Feature searches were faster after playing an action videogame, suggesting that players developed a better target template to guide search in a top-down manner. The results of the dual search suggest that, in addition to enhancing the ability to divide attention, playing an action game improves the top-down guidance of attention to possible target locations. The results have practical implications for the development of training tools to improve perceptual and cognitive skills.

  3. Sequencing of allotetraploid cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L. acc. TM-1) provides a resource for fiber improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Tianzhen; Hu, Yan; Jiang, Wenkai; Fang, Lei; Guan, Xueying; Chen, Jiedan; Zhang, Jinbo; Saski, Christopher A; Scheffler, Brian E; Stelly, David M; Hulse-Kemp, Amanda M; Wan, Qun; Liu, Bingliang; Liu, Chunxiao; Wang, Sen; Pan, Mengqiao; Wang, Yangkun; Wang, Dawei; Ye, Wenxue; Chang, Lijing; Zhang, Wenpan; Song, Qingxin; Kirkbride, Ryan C; Chen, Xiaoya; Dennis, Elizabeth; Llewellyn, Danny J; Peterson, Daniel G; Thaxton, Peggy; Jones, Don C; Wang, Qiong; Xu, Xiaoyang; Zhang, Hua; Wu, Huaitong; Zhou, Lei; Mei, Gaofu; Chen, Shuqi; Tian, Yue; Xiang, Dan; Li, Xinghe; Ding, Jian; Zuo, Qiyang; Tao, Linna; Liu, Yunchao; Li, Ji; Lin, Yu; Hui, Yuanyuan; Cao, Zhisheng; Cai, Caiping; Zhu, Xiefei; Jiang, Zhi; Zhou, Baoliang; Guo, Wangzhen; Li, Ruiqiang; Chen, Z Jeffrey

    2015-05-01

    Upland cotton is a model for polyploid crop domestication and transgenic improvement. Here we sequenced the allotetraploid Gossypium hirsutum L. acc. TM-1 genome by integrating whole-genome shotgun reads, bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC)-end sequences and genotype-by-sequencing genetic maps. We assembled and annotated 32,032 A-subgenome genes and 34,402 D-subgenome genes. Structural rearrangements, gene loss, disrupted genes and sequence divergence were more common in the A subgenome than in the D subgenome, suggesting asymmetric evolution. However, no genome-wide expression dominance was found between the subgenomes. Genomic signatures of selection and domestication are associated with positively selected genes (PSGs) for fiber improvement in the A subgenome and for stress tolerance in the D subgenome. This draft genome sequence provides a resource for engineering superior cotton lines.

  4. Using surface imaging and visual coaching to improve the reproducibility and stability of deep-inspiration breath hold for left-breast-cancer radiotherapy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cerviño, Laura I.; Gupta, Sonia; Rose, Mary A.; Yashar, Catheryn; Jiang, Steve B.

    2009-11-01

    Late cardiac complications may arise after left-breast radiation therapy. Deep-inspiration breath hold (DIBH) allows reduction of the irradiated heart volume at the same time as it reduces tumor bed motion and increases lung sparing. In the present study, we have evaluated the improvement in reproducibility and stability of the DIBH for left-breast-cancer treatment when visual coaching is provided with the aid of 3D video surface imaging and video goggles. Five left-breast-cancer patients and fifteen healthy volunteers were asked to perform a series of DIBHs without and with visual coaching. Reproducibility and stability of DIBH were measured for each individual with and without visual coaching. The average reproducibility and stability changed from 2.1 mm and 1.5 mm, respectively, without visual feedback to 0.5 mm and 0.7 mm with visual feedback, showing a significant statistical difference (p 2 mm) in reproducibility and stability were observed in 35% and 15% of the subjects, respectively. The average chest wall excursion of the DIBH with respect to the free breathing preceding the DIBH was found to be 11.3 mm. The reproducibility and stability of the DIBH improve significantly from the visual coaching provided to the patient, especially in those patients with poor reproducibility and stability.

  5. Visual Acuity Improvement of Amblyopia in an Adult With Levodopa/Carbidopa Treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orge, Faruk H; Dar, Suhail A

    2015-09-09

    Amblyopia is the leading cause of visual loss in children, affecting 2% to 3% of the population. Occlusion of the dominant eye is the primary and best treatment, although efficacy decreases after 6 years of age. As a result, levodopa/carbidopa has been explored as an adjunct to conventional therapy and has been shown to have an immediate impact on visual acuity. Several studies to date have shown mixed results on the benefit of supplementing occlusion therapy with levodopa/carbidopa, although they have primarily studied children. The authors describe the oldest patient (46 years old) documented in the literature to have shown improvement in visual acuity using levodopa/carbidopa. He was given a 16-week course at a dose in line with previous studies while being effectively occluded full time due to a glaucomatous right eye with no light perception. On 3-month follow-up, his left eye improved two lines and stabilized at 6 months. Copyright 2015, SLACK Incorporated.

  6. Factors Predictive of Improved Abdominal Ultrasound Visualization after Oral Administration of Simethicone.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marsico, Maria; Gabbani, Tommaso; Casseri, Tommaso; Biagini, Maria Rosa

    2016-11-01

    Ultrasonography is a non-invasive, accurate and low-cost technique used to study the upper abdomen, but it has reduced reliability in the study of the pancreas and retroperitoneum. Simethicone is a well-known emulsifying agent that has been used to improve ultrasonographic visualization. The aim of this study was to identify anthropometric parameters that are able to predict a good response to simethicone in improving ultrasonographic visualization of abdominal structures. One hundred twenty-seven patients were recruited. After basal examination, their anthropometric parameters were collected. Patients with an incomplete upper abdominal examination because of gastrointestinal gas have greater body mass index, waist circumference and abdominal wall thickness. In our study, the best anthropometric parameter for identifying patients with poor visualization at abdominal ultrasound examination is waist circumference. Using a cutoff of 84 cm, we can identify patients with poor visibility at abdominal ultrasound examination (group B) with a sensitivity of 90%. Copyright © 2016 World Federation for Ultrasound in Medicine & Biology. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Improving the spelling ability of Grade 3 learners through visual imaging teaching strategies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Annalene van Staden

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available This paper discusses two key cognitive theories underlying spelling acquisition, i.e. the developmental stage theory and the overlapping waves theory. Within the developmental stage framework, learning to spell is viewed as a process of moving from spelling that represents sound to spelling that represents meaning, following a sequence of qualitatively distinct stages in a linear fashion. In contrast, proponents of the overlapping waves theory emphasise the use of different instructional approaches at any given time. This model is process-orientated and stresses the adaptation of strategies to meet the needs of the task. Other researchers maintain that spelling is a natural process and emphasise the importance of invented spelling practices and creative writing embedded in whole-language programmes. There is, however, a lack of research validating the efficacy of an exclusively naturalistic approach to spelling. In general, research findings support a combination of incidental learning and direct instruction as most beneficial for learners with spelling problems. Thus, this study was undertaken to develop a visual imagery programme for Grade 3 learners by compromising between direct instruction in specific spelling skills (i.e. visual imaging strategies whilst also immersing learners in meaningful authentic reading activities. It was hypothesised that the spelling abilities of Afrikaans-speaking Grade 3 learners can be improved significantly by exposing them to a spelling programme that focuses on visual imaging, immediate feedback and self-correcting strategies. Researchers opposed to visual teaching methods for spelling moreover postulate, among other things, that learners with auditory preferences will not benefit from a visual approach to the teaching of spelling. In this empirical study the possible relation between preferential learning styles and spelling performance was also investigated.

  8. A Low-Literacy Asthma Action Plan to Improve Provider Asthma Counseling: A Randomized Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yin, H Shonna; Gupta, Ruchi S; Tomopoulos, Suzy; Mendelsohn, Alan L; Egan, Maureen; van Schaick, Linda; Wolf, Michael S; Sanchez, Dayana C; Warren, Christopher; Encalada, Karen; Dreyer, Benard P

    2016-01-01

    The use of written asthma action plans (WAAPs) has been associated with reduced asthma-related morbidity, but there are concerns about their complexity. We developed a health literacy-informed, pictogram- and photograph-based WAAP and examined whether providers who used it, with no training, would have better asthma counseling quality compared with those who used a standard plan. Physicians at 2 academic centers randomized to use a low-literacy or standard action plan (American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology) to counsel the hypothetical parent of child with moderate persistent asthma (regimen: Flovent 110 μg 2 puffs twice daily, Singulair 5 mg daily, Albuterol 2 puffs every 4 hours as needed). Two blinded raters independently reviewed counseling transcriptions. medication instructions presented with times of day (eg, morning and night vs number of times per day) and inhaler color; spacer use recommended; need for everyday medications, even when sick, addressed; and explicit symptoms used. 119 providers were randomly assigned (61 low literacy, 58 standard). Providers who used the low-literacy plan were more likely to use times of day (eg, Flovent morning and night, 96.7% vs 51.7%, P counseling time was similar (3.9 [2.5] vs 3.8 [2.6] minutes, P = .8). Use of a low-literacy WAAP improves the quality of asthma counseling by helping providers target key issues by using recommended clear communication principles. Copyright © 2016 by the American Academy of Pediatrics.

  9. Encoder: a connectionist model of how learning to visually encode fixated text images improves reading fluency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Gale L

    2004-07-01

    This article proposes that visual encoding learning improves reading fluency by widening the span over which letters are recognized from a fixated text image so that fewer fixations are needed to cover a text line. Encoder is a connectionist model that learns to convert images like the fixated text images human readers encode into the corresponding letter sequences. The computational theory of classification learning predicts that fixated text-image size makes this learning difficult but that reducing image variability and biasing learning should help. Encoder confirms these predictions. It fails to learn as image size increases but achieves humanlike visual encoding accuracy when image variability is reduced by regularities in fixation positions and letter sequences and when learning is biased to discover mapping functions based on the sequential, componential structure of text. After training, Encoder exhibits many humanlike text familiarity effects. ((c) 2004 APA, all rights reserved)

  10. Improved visual function in IDDM patients with unchanged cumulative incidence of sight-threatening diabetic retinopathy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rossing, K; Jacobsen, P; Rossing, P

    1998-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To evaluate trends in visual acuity and the cumulative incidence of diabetic retinopathy in a clinic-based observational follow-up study. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS: All patients visiting Hvidore Hospital in 1984 whose diagnosis of IDDM had been made before 41 years of age and between...... retinopathy, maculopathy, and laser-treated retinopathy 15 years after onset of diabetes were, respectively, 13+/-3, 11+/-3, and 12+/-3 in group A; 16+/-3, 12+/-3, and 21+/-4 in group B; 11+/-3, 5+/-2, and 12+/-3 in group C, respectively (NS). The development of proliferative retinopathy was associated...... with the degree of retinopathy and albuminuria at baseline and the mean HbA1c during follow-up. CONCLUSIONS: The study revealed an improvement in visual acuity with increasing calendar year of diabetes onset but an unchanged cumulative incidence of diabetic retinopathy....

  11. A critical assessment of visual identification of marine microplastic using Raman spectroscopy for analysis improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lenz, Robin; Enders, Kristina; Stedmon, Colin A; Mackenzie, David M A; Nielsen, Torkel Gissel

    2015-11-15

    Identification and characterisation of microplastic (MP) is a necessary step to evaluate their concentrations, chemical composition and interactions with biota. MP ≥10μm diameter filtered from below the sea surface in the European and subtropical North Atlantic were simultaneously identified by visual microscopy and Raman micro-spectroscopy. Visually identified particles below 100μm had a significantly lower percentage confirmed by Raman than larger ones indicating that visual identification alone is inappropriate for studies on small microplastics. Sixty-eight percent of visually counted MP (n=1279) were spectroscopically confirmed being plastic. The percentage varied with type, colour and size of the MP. Fibres had a higher success rate (75%) than particles (64%). We tested Raman micro-spectroscopy applicability for MP identification with respect to varying chemical composition (additives), degradation state and organic matter coating. Partially UV-degraded post-consumer plastics provided identifiable Raman spectra for polymers most common among marine MP, i.e. polyethylene and polypropylene. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Organization Complexity and Primary Care Providers' Perceptions of Quality Improvement Culture Within the Veterans Health Administration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Korom-Djakovic, Danijela; Canamucio, Anne; Lempa, Michele; Yano, Elizabeth M; Long, Judith A

    2016-01-01

    This study examined how aspects of quality improvement (QI) culture changed during the introduction of the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) patient-centered medical home initiative and how they were influenced by existing organizational factors, including VHA facility complexity and practice location. A voluntary survey, measuring primary care providers' (PCPs') perspectives on QI culture at their primary care clinics, was administered in 2010 and 2012. Participants were 320 PCPs from hospital- and community-based primary care practices in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Delaware, New Jersey, New York, and Ohio. PCPs in community-based outpatient clinics reported an improvement in established processes for QI, and communication and cooperation from 2010 to 2012. However, their peers in hospital-based clinics did not report any significant improvements in QI culture. In both years, compared with high-complexity facilities, medium- and low-complexity facilities had better scores on the scales assessing established processes for QI, and communication and cooperation. © The Author(s) 2014.

  13. Pycnogenol improves microcirculation, retinal edema, and visual acuity in early diabetic retinopathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steigerwalt, Robert; Belcaro, Gianni; Cesarone, Maria Rosaria; Di Renzo, Andrea; Grossi, Maria Giovanna; Ricci, Andrea; Dugall, Mark; Cacchio, Marisa; Schönlau, Frank

    2009-12-01

    The growing numbers of diabetes cases in the developed world are followed by increasing numbers of people diagnosed with diabetic complications. Diabetic microangiopathies in the eye lead to the development of retinopathy involving gradual loss of vision. Previous studies with Pycnogenol showed effectiveness for stopping progression of preproliferative stages of retinopathy. The aim of our study was to show protective effects of Pycnogenol in early stages of retinopathy, characterized by mild to moderate retinal edema in the absence of hemorrhages or hard exudates in the macula center. Following treatment with Pycnogenol (24 patients) for 3 months, retinal edema score (dilated ophthalmology) and retinal thickness (high resolution ultrasound) showed statistically significant improvement as compared to the placebo group (22 patients), which showed negligible changes to baseline. Laser Doppler flow velocity measurements at the central retinal artery showed a statistically significant increase from 34 to 44 cm/s in the Pycnogenol group as compared to marginal effects in the control group. The major positive observation of this study is the visual improvement, which was subjectively perceived by 18 out of 24 patients in the Pycnogenol group. Testing of visual acuity using the Snellen chart showed a significant improvement from baseline 14/20 to 17/20 already, after 2 months treatment, whereas no change was found in the control group. Pycnogenol taken at this early stage of retinopathy may enhance retinal blood circulation accompanied by regression of edema, which favorably improves vision of patients.

  14. The Improvement of Students’ Leadership Ethic in Studying History by Using Baratayuda Audio Visual Media

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wendhy Rachmadhany

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of this research is to know the improvement of students’ leadership ethic in studying History after the implementation of Baratayuda Audio Visual Media. The population of this research is XI-Social Science-1 Class of SMAN 1 Pare, Kediri Regency, in academic year 2016/2017, consisted of 39 students. This Classroom Action Research (CAR is arranged by Pre-test, Cycle-1 and Cycle-2 which consisted by some steps, such like; planning, implementation, observation, and reflection. Collecting the data is by using questionnaire of leadership ethic, interview, and documentation. The method of data analysis in this research is descriptive analysis by comparing the improvement from one cycle to another. The result of the research is showing that: There is an improvement of leadership ethic in studying History after the implementation of Baratayuda Audio Visual media. It is shown by the results as follows; Pre-test indicates that the passing score is about 17, 95%. On Cycle-1 indicates 46, 1% and on Cycle-2 indicates a significant improvement about 71, 83%.

  15. Smarter hospital communication: secure smartphone text messaging improves provider satisfaction and perception of efficacy, workflow.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Przybylo, Jennifer A; Wang, Ange; Loftus, Pooja; Evans, Kambria H; Chu, Isabella; Shieh, Lisa

    2014-09-01

    Though current hospital paging systems are neither efficient (callbacks disrupt workflow), nor secure (pagers are not Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act [HIPAA]-compliant), they are routinely used to communicate patient information. Smartphone-based text messaging is a potentially more convenient and efficient mobile alternative; however, commercial cellular networks are also not secure. To determine if augmenting one-way pagers with Medigram, a secure, HIPAA-compliant group messaging (HCGM) application for smartphones, could improve hospital team communication. Eight-week prospective, cluster-randomized, controlled trial Stanford Hospital Three inpatient medicine teams used the HCGM application in addition to paging, while two inpatient medicine teams used paging only for intra-team communication. Baseline and post-study surveys were collected from 22 control and 41 HCGM team members. When compared with paging, HCGM was rated significantly (P applications improve provider perception of in-hospital communication, while providing the information security that paging and commercial cellular networks do not. © 2014 The Authors Journal of Hospital Medicine published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of Society of Hospital Medicine.

  16. Visual feedback attenuates mean concentric barbell velocity loss, and improves motivation, competitiveness, and perceived workload in male adolescent athletes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weakley, Jonathon Js; Wilson, Kyle M; Till, Kevin; Read, Dale B; Darrall-Jones, Joshua; Roe, Gregory; Phibbs, Padraic J; Jones, Ben

    2017-07-12

    It is unknown whether instantaneous visual feedback of resistance training outcomes can enhance barbell velocity in younger athletes. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to quantify the effects of visual feedback on mean concentric barbell velocity in the back squat, and to identify changes in motivation, competitiveness, and perceived workload. In a randomised-crossover design (Feedback vs. Control) feedback of mean concentric barbell velocity was or was not provided throughout a set of 10 repetitions in the barbell back squat. Magnitude-based inferences were used to assess changes between conditions, with almost certainly greater differences in mean concentric velocity between the Feedback (0.70 ±0.04 m·s) and Control (0.65 ±0.05 m·s) observed. Additionally, individual repetition mean concentric velocity ranged from possibly (repetition number two: 0.79 ±0.04 vs. 0.78 ±0.04 m·s) to almost certainly (repetition number 10: 0.58 ±0.05 vs. 0.49 ±0.05 m·s) greater when provided feedback, while almost certain differences were observed in motivation, competitiveness, and perceived workload, respectively. Providing adolescent male athletes with visual kinematic information while completing resistance training is beneficial for the maintenance of barbell velocity during a training set, potentially enhancing physical performance. Moreover, these improvements were observed alongside increases in motivation, competitiveness and perceived workload providing insight into the underlying mechanisms responsible for the performance gains observed. Given the observed maintenance of barbell velocity during a training set, practitioners can use this technique to manipulate training outcomes during resistance training.

  17. Premedication with N-acetylcysteine and simethicone improves mucosal visualization during gastroscopy: a randomized, controlled, endoscopist-blinded study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neale, James R; James, Shirley; Callaghan, James; Patel, Praful

    2013-07-01

    Diagnostic gastroscopy provides a unique opportunity to diagnose early oesophagogastric neoplasia; however, intraluminal mucus and bile can obscure mucosal visualization. The aim of this study was to determine whether the use of a premedication solution containing the mucolytic agent N-acetylcysteine and the surfactant simethicone improves mucosal visualization within a UK diagnostic gastroscopy service. A total of 75 consecutive patients were recruited from a single (S.J.) endoscopist's diagnostic gastroscopy list. They were randomized into three treatment groups: (a) standard control=clear fluids only for 6 h, nil by mouth for 2 h; (b) water control=standard control+100 ml sterile water (given 20 min before gastroscopy); and (c) solution=standard control+100 ml investigated solution (20 min before gastroscopy). The endoscopist was blinded to patient preparation. Inadequate mucosal visualization was defined as fluid/mucus during gastroscopy that could not be suctioned and required flushing with water. The volume of flush, the site at which it was used and the total procedure times were recorded. All three groups showed no statistical difference for age, sex ratio, procedure priority or indication. The mean volume of flush required to obtain clear mucosa was significantly less in the solution group compared with the other groups. The mean overall procedure time was also less in the solution group compared with the other groups. Premedication with N-acetylcysteine and simethicone markedly improves mucosal visibility during gastroscopy. It also reduces the time taken for the procedure. This low-cost and well-tolerated intervention may improve detection of early neoplasia.

  18. Performance improvements from imagery:evidence that internal visual imagery is superior to external visual imagery for slalom performance

    OpenAIRE

    Nichola eCallow; Ross eRoberts; Lew eHardy; Dan eJiang; Martin G Edwards

    2013-01-01

    We report three experiments investigating the hypothesis that use of internal visual imagery (IVI) would be superior to external visual imagery (EVI) for the performance of different slalom-based motor tasks. In Experiment 1, three groups of participants (IVI, EVI, and a control group) performed a driving-simulation slalom task. The IVI group achieved significantly quicker lap times than EVI and the control group. In Experiment 2, participants performed a downhill running slalom task under bo...

  19. A management framework for training providers to improve workplace skills development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Govender

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: Deputy President, Ms Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, says a skills revolution is necessary for South Africa’s (SA skills crisis. The SA skills revolution began with the skills legislation of 1998-9 when the Departments of Labour (DOL and Education (DOE intended a seamless, integrated approach to rapid skills development. The National Skills Development Strategy (NSDS, the Sector Education and Training Providers (SETAs, the South African Qualifications Authorities (SAQA and the National Qualifications Framework (NQF were established to drive the human resource and skills development revolutionary strategy. The purpose of this paper is to present the findings of the 2001-3 research investigating an internal management framework for training providers, employers and managers to accelerate workplace skills development. Design/Methodology/Approach: An integrated, multi-method research model was employed to gather empirical evidence on skills practices. A robust quantitative survey was conducted within 600 organisations. Simultaneously, rich, descriptive data was gathered from managers and employees using a structured qualitative interview strategy. The integrated data pool was factor analysed. The research findings, conclusion and recommended framework were reported in a PhD thesis. Findings: The research findings reveal major gaps in the effectiveness of SA training providers to radically accelerate and improve workplace skills development as per national skills legislation, implementation and management criteria. Implications: If the skills revolution in SA is to succeed, training providers especially, must become less complacent, more assertive and fully equipped when participating in the skills development arena. Originality/Value: Via this research, training providers will gain critical, reflective insight into their management framework for meeting skills legislative criteria and for managing training interventions and skills projects.

  20. Using Press Ganey Provider Feedback to Improve Patient Satisfaction: A Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newgard, Craig D; Fu, Rongwei; Heilman, James; Tanski, Mary; John Ma, O; Lines, Alan; Keith French, L

    2017-09-01

    The objective was to conduct a pilot randomized controlled trial to assess the feasibility, logistics, and potential effect of monthly provider funnel plot feedback reports from Press Ganey data and semiannual face-to-face coaching sessions to improve patient satisfaction scores. This was a pilot randomized controlled trial of 25 emergency medicine faculty providers in one urban academic emergency department. We enrolled full-time clinical faculty with at least 12 months of baseline Press Ganey data, who anticipated working in the ED for at least 12 additional months. Providers were randomized into intervention or control groups in a 1:1 ratio. The intervention group had an initial 20-minute meeting to introduce the funnel plot feedback tool and standardized feedback based on their baseline Press Ganey scores and then received a monthly e-mail with their individualized funnel plot depicting cumulative Press Ganey scores (compared to their baseline score and the mean score of all providers) for 12 months. The primary outcome was the difference in Press Ganey "doctor-overall" scores between treatment groups at 12 months. We used a weighted analysis of covariance model to analyze the study groups, accounting for variation in the number of surveys by provider and baseline scores. Of 36 eligible faculty, we enrolled 25 providers, 13 of whom were randomized to the intervention group and 12 to the control group. During the study period, there were 815 Press Ganey surveys returned, ranging from four to 71 surveys per provider. For the standardized overall doctor score over 12 months (primary outcome), there was no difference between the intervention and control groups (difference = 1.3 points, 95% confidence interval = -2.4 to 5.9, p = 0.47). Similarly, there was no difference between groups when evaluating the four categories of doctor-specific patient satisfaction scores from the Press Ganey survey (all p > 0.05). In this pilot trial of monthly provider funnel plot

  1. Health care provider targeted interventions to improve medication adherence: systematic review and meta-analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conn, V. S.; Ruppar, T. M.; Enriquez, M.; Cooper, P. S.; Chan, K. C.

    2017-01-01

    Objective This systematic review applied meta-analytic procedures to synthesize medication adherence (also termed compliance) interventions that focus on health care providers. Design Comprehensive searching located studies testing interventions that targeted health care providers and reported patient medication adherence behavior outcomes. Search strategies included 13 computerized databases, hand searches of 57 journals, and both author and ancestry searches. Study sample, intervention characteristics, design, and outcomes were reliably coded. Standardized mean difference effect sizes were calculated using random-effects models. Heterogeneity was examined with Q and I2 statistics. Exploratory moderator analyses used meta-analytic analog of ANOVA and regression. Results Codable data were extracted from 218 reports of 151,182 subjects. The mean difference effect size was 0.233. Effect sizes for individual interventions varied from .088 to 0.301. Interventions were more effective when they included multiple strategies. Risk of bias assessment documented larger effect sizes in studies with larger samples, studies that used true control groups (as compared to attention control), and studies without intention-to-treat analyses. Conclusion Overall, this meta-analysis documented that interventions targeted to health care providers significantly improved patient medication adherence. The modest overall effect size suggests that interventions addressing multiple levels of influence on medication adherence may be necessary to achieve therapeutic outcomes. PMID:25728214

  2. Does providing extended relapse prevention bibliotherapy to problem gamblers improve outcome?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hodgins, David C; Currie, Shawn R; el-Guebaly, Nady; Diskin, Katherine M

    2007-03-01

    Relapse rates among pathological gamblers are high with as many as 75% of gamblers returning to gambling shortly after a serious attempt to quit. The present study focused on providing a low cost, easy to access relapse prevention program to such individuals. Based on information collected in our ongoing study of the process of relapse, a series of relapse prevention booklets were developed and evaluated. Individuals who had recently quit gambling (N = 169) were recruited (through media announcements) and randomly assigned to a single mailing condition in which they received one booklet summarizing all of the relapse prevention information or a repeated mailing condition in which they received the summary booklet plus 7 additional booklets mailed to them at regular intervals over the course of a year period. Gambling involvement over the course of the 12-month follow-up period, confirmed by family or friends, was compared between the two groups. Results indicated that participants receiving the repeated mailings were more likely to meet their goal, but they did not differ from participants receiving the single mailing in frequency of gambling or extent of gambling losses. The results of this project suggest that providing extended relapse prevention bibliotherapy to problem gamblers does not improve outcome. However, providing the overview booklet may be a low cost, easy to access alternative for individuals who have quit gambling.

  3. Use of visual CO2 feedback as a retrofit solution for improving classroom air quality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wargocki, Pawel; Da Silva, Nuno Alexandre Faria

    2015-01-01

    Carbon dioxide (CO2) sensors that provide a visual indication were installed in classrooms during normal school operation. During 2-week periods, teachers and students were instructed to open the windows in response to the visual CO2 feedback in 1week and open them, as they would normally do...... and the other pair with no cooling. Classrooms were matched by grade. Providing visual CO2 feedback reduced CO2 levels, as more windows were opened in this condition. This increased energy use for heating and reduced the cooling requirement in summertime. Split cooling reduced the frequency of window opening...... only when no visual CO2 feedback was present....

  4. Improvement of visual acuity in children with anisometropic amblyopia treated with rotated prisms combined with near activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chao-Chyun Lin

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available AIM: To evaluate the efficacy of a new modality for improving visual acuity (VA in pediatric patients with anisometropic amblyopia.METHODS: Retrospective and interventional case series. Medical records of 360 children with anisometropic amblyopia treated with a modality that included rotated prisms, lenses, and near activities from January 2008 to January 2012 were analyzed. Characteristics such as improvement of VA and contrast sensitivity in amblyopic eyes and resolution of amblyopia (VA≤0.1logMAR or a difference of ≤2 lines in logMAR between the eyes were assessed.RESULTS: Among the patients, the mean VA of the amblyopic eyes improved from 0.48logMAR (SD=0.16 to 0.12logMAR (SD=0.16 and the mean VA improvement was 0.36logMAR (SD=0.10, PP=0.437. We found that better baseline VA may be related to success and shorten the time to amblyopic resolution.CONCLUSION: VA and contrast sensitivity improved with rotated prisms, correcting lenses, and near activities in children with anisometropic amblyopia. The VA improvement by this modality was comparable to other methods. However, the time to resolution of amblyopia was shorter with this method than with other modalities. Rotated prisms combined with near acuity could provide an alternative treatment in children with anisometropic amblyopia who can’t tolerant traditional therapy method like patching.

  5. Economic Insights into Providing Access to Improved Groundwater Sources in Remote, Low-Resource Areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abramson, A.; Lazarovitch, N.; Adar, E.

    2013-12-01

    Groundwater is often the most or only feasible drinking water source in remote, low-resource areas. Yet the economics of its development have not been systematically outlined. We applied CBARWI (Cost-Benefit Analysis for Remote Water Improvements), a recently developed Decision Support System, to investigate the economic, physical and management factors related to the costs and benefits of non-networked groundwater supply in remote areas. Synthetic profiles of community water services (n = 17,962), defined across 14 parameters' values and ranges relevant to remote areas, were imputed into the decision framework, and the parameter effects on economic outcomes were investigated through regression analysis (Table 1). Several approaches were included for financing the improvements, after Abramson et al, 2011: willingness-to -pay (WTP), -borrow (WTB) and -work (WTW) in community irrigation (';water-for-work'). We found that low-cost groundwater development approaches are almost 7 times more cost-effective than conventional boreholes fitted with handpumps. The costs of electric, submersible borehole pumps are comparable only when providing expanded water supplies, and off-grid communities pay significantly more for such expansions. In our model, new source construction is less cost-effective than improvement of existing wells, but necessary for expanding access to isolated households. The financing approach significantly impacts the feasibility of demand-driven cost recovery; in our investigation, benefit exceeds cost in 16, 32 and 48% of water service configurations financed by WTP, WTB and WTW, respectively. Regressions of total cost (R2 = 0.723) and net benefit under WTW (R2 = 0.829) along with analysis of output distributions indicate that parameters determining the profitability of irrigation are different from those determining costs and other measures of net benefit. These findings suggest that the cost-benefit outcomes associated with groundwater-based water

  6. Enhanced stimulus strength improves visual cognition in aging and Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cronin-Golomb, Alice; Gilmore, Grover C; Neargarder, Sandy; Morrison, Sarah R; Laudate, Thomas M

    2007-10-01

    Deficits in visual cognition in Alzheimer's disease (AD) arise from neuropathological changes in higher-order association areas of the cortex and from defective input from lower-level visual processing areas. We investigated whether enhanced signal strength may lead to improvement of visual cognition in AD. We tested 35 individuals with probable AD, 35 age-matched elderly control (EC) and 58 young control (YC) adults on letter identification, word reading, picture naming, discrimination of unfamiliar faces, and pattern completion. The contrast sensitivity step-difference across an independent sample of AD and EC groups was used in calculating an image filter, from which we produced stimulus-strength conditions of low-degraded, medium-normal, and high-enhanced. Using this filter we created a hypothetical proximal-strength equivalence between AD at medium strength and EC at low strength, and between AD at high strength and EC at medium strength. For letter identification, word reading, picture naming, and face discrimination, medium strength elicited AD accuracy levels and reaction times that were similar to those of EC at low strength. On picture naming, increased strength reduced perceptual-type errors for EC and AD and random errors for AD. For word reading, high strength elicited AD accuracy levels and reaction times that were equivalent to those of EC at medium strength. We saw no effect of signal-strength manipulation on performance of pattern completion, possibly owing to the complex cognitive demands of that task or to the inadequacy of the filter for its images. The results indicate that putative AD-EC differences in cognition directly reflect contrast sensitivity differences between the groups. Enhancement of stimulus strength can ameliorate vision-based deficits and lead to improvement in some aspects of cognitive performance. These results suggest new non-pharmacological avenues to explore in the attempt to improve cognition in elderly adults and

  7. A complex noise reduction method for improving visualization of SD-OCT skin biomedical images

    Science.gov (United States)

    Myakinin, Oleg O.; Zakharov, Valery P.; Bratchenko, Ivan A.; Kornilin, Dmitry V.; Khramov, Alexander G.

    2014-05-01

    In this paper we consider the original method of solving noise reduction problem for visualization's quality improvement of SD-OCT skin and tumors biomedical images. The principal advantages of OCT are high resolution and possibility of in vivo analysis. We propose a two-stage algorithm: 1) process of raw one-dimensional A-scans of SD-OCT and 2) remove a noise from the resulting B(C)-scans. The general mathematical methods of SD-OCT are unstable: if the noise of the CCD is 1.6% of the dynamic range then result distortions are already 25-40% of the dynamic range. We use at the first stage a resampling of A-scans and simple linear filters to reduce the amount of data and remove the noise of the CCD camera. The efficiency, improving productivity and conservation of the axial resolution when using this approach are showed. At the second stage we use an effective algorithms based on Hilbert-Huang Transform for more accurately noise peaks removal. The effectiveness of the proposed approach for visualization of malignant and benign skin tumors (melanoma, BCC etc.) and a significant improvement of SNR level for different methods of noise reduction are showed. Also in this study we consider a modification of this method depending of a specific hardware and software features of used OCT setup. The basic version does not require any hardware modifications of existing equipment. The effectiveness of proposed method for 3D visualization of tissues can simplify medical diagnosis in oncology.

  8. Autofluorescence imaging for improved visualization of joint structures during arthroscopic surgery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nguyen, Duy Tan; van Horssen, Pepijn; Derriks, Hans; van de Giessen, Martijn; van Leeuwen, Ton

    2017-12-01

    The purpose of our study is to develop the arthroscopic autofluorescence imaging (AFI) system to improve the visualization during arthroscopic surgery by real-time enhancing the contrast between joint structures with autofluorescence imaging. Its validity was evaluated around the arthroscopic anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction, specifically improving the contrast between the femoral insertion site and its background. The feasibility of the AFI system was validated with bovine and human knees. The spectral responses of the femoral insertion site and its surrounding bone and cartilage were measured with a fluorospectrometer. A prototype of the AFI system was developed based on the spectral responses (SR) and test images of the insertion site. The accuracy was validated by evaluating the overlap between manually segmented insertion sites on the white light color images and on the corresponding spectral unmixed autofluorescence images. The final prototype of the AFI system was tested during arthroscopy in cadaveric knees. The results showed that the joint structures have different SRs. Spectral unmixing enabled separation of the SRs and improved the contrast between the joint structures. The agreement between visible light and autofluorescence ligament insertions had a mean Dice coefficient of 0.84 and the mean Dice coefficient of the interobserver variability for visible light imaging was 0.85. We have shown that the femoral insertion site can be accurately visualized with autofluorescence imaging combined with spectral unmixing. The AFI system demonstrates the feasibility of real-time and subject-specific visualization of the femoral insertion site which can facilitate anatomic ACL reconstruction. In addition, the AFI system can facilitate arthroscopic procedures in other joints and can also be used as a diagnostic tool.

  9. An improved visualization-based force-measurement technique for short-duration hypersonic facilities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Laurence, Stuart J.; Karl, Sebastian [Institute of Aerodynamics and Flow Technology, Spacecraft Section, German Aerospace Center (DLR), Goettingen (Germany)

    2010-06-15

    This article is concerned with describing and exploring the limitations of an improved version of a recently proposed visualization-based technique for the measurement of forces and moments in short-duration hypersonic wind tunnels. The technique is based on tracking the motion of a free-flying body over a sequence of high-speed visualizations; while this idea is not new in itself, the use of high-speed digital cinematography combined with a highly accurate least-squares tracking algorithm allows improved results over what have been previously possible with such techniques. The technique precision is estimated through the analysis of artificially constructed and experimental test images, and the resulting error in acceleration measurements is characterized. For wind-tunnel scale models, position measurements to within a few microns are shown to be readily attainable. Image data from two previous experimental studies in the T5 hypervelocity shock tunnel are then reanalyzed with the improved technique: the uncertainty in the mean drag acceleration is shown to be reduced to the order of the flow unsteadiness, 2-3%, and time-resolved acceleration measurements are also shown to be possible. The response time of the technique for the configurations studied is estimated to be {proportional_to}0.5 ms. Comparisons with computations using the DLR TAU code also yield agreement to within the overall experimental uncertainty. Measurement of the pitching moment for blunt geometries still appears challenging, however. (orig.)

  10. Stereoscopic Segmentation Cues Improve Visual Timing Performance in Spatiotemporally Cluttered Environments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel Talbot

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Recently, Cass and Van der Burg demonstrated that temporal order judgment (TOJ precision could be profoundly impaired by the mere presence of dynamic visual clutter elsewhere in the visual field. This study examines whether presenting target and distractor objects in different depth planes might ameliorate this remote temporal camouflage (RTC effect. TOJ thresholds were measured under static and dynamic (flickering distractor conditions. In Experiment 1, targets were presented at zero, crossed, or uncrossed disparity, with distractors fixed at zero disparity. Thresholds were significantly elevated under dynamic compared with static contextual conditions, replicating the RTC effect. Crossed but not uncrossed disparity targets improved performance in dynamic distractor contexts, which otherwise produce substantial RTC. In Experiment 2, the assignment of disparity was reversed: targets fixed at zero disparity; distractors crossed, uncrossed, or zero. Under these conditions, thresholds improved significantly in the nonzero distractor disparity conditions. These results indicate that presenting target and distractor objects in different planes can significantly improve TOJ performance in dynamic conditions. In Experiment 3, targets were each presented with a different sign of disparity (e.g., one crossed and the other uncrossed, with no resulting performance benefits. Results suggest that disparity can be used to alleviate the performance-diminishing effects of RTC, but only if both targets constitute a single and unique disparity-defined surface.

  11. Helicopter visual aid system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baisley, R. L.

    1973-01-01

    The helicopter visual aid system has been built and flight tested in situations representative of actual flight missions. The mechanisms discussed contributed greatly to the successful performance of the system throughout the 160 hours of flight testing. It has demonstrated that the visual aid concept can provide improved daytime visual capability, greatly improved nighttime capability, surveillance from greater distances and/or altitudes, covert operation at night through the use of the IR searchlight, and a photographic recording at the scene being viewed.

  12. Moving Beyond Blind Men and Elephants: Providing Total Estimated Annual Costs Improves Health Insurance Decision Making.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnes, Andrew J; Hanoch, Yaniv; Rice, Thomas; Long, Sharon K

    2017-10-01

    Health insurance is among the most important financial and health-related decisions that people make. Choosing a health insurance plan that offers sufficient risk protection is difficult, in part because total expected health care costs are not transparent. This study examines the effect of providing total costs estimates on health insurance decisions using a series of hypothetical choice experiments given to 7,648 individuals responding to the fall 2015 Health Reform Monitoring Survey. Participants were given two health scenarios presented in random order asking which of three insurance plans would best meet their needs. Half received total estimated costs, which increased the probability of choosing a cost-minimizing plan by 3.0 to 10.6 percentage points, depending on the scenario ( p < .01). With many consumers choosing or failing to switch out of plans that offer insufficient coverage, incorporating insights on consumer decision making with personalized information to estimate costs can improve the quality of health insurance choices.

  13. Improving Science and IT Literacy by Providing Urban-Based Environmental Science Research Opportunities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cuff, K. E.; Corazza, L.; Liang, J.

    2007-12-01

    A U.C. Berkeley-based outreach program known as Environmental Science Information Technology Activities has been in operation over the past four years. The primary aim of the program is to provide opportunities for grades 9 and 10 students in diverse East San Francisco Bay Area communities to develop deeper understandings of the nature and conduct of science, which will increase their capacity to enroll and perform successfully in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) courses in the future. Design of the program has been informed by recent research that indicates a close relationship between educational activities that promote the perception of STEM as being relevant and the ability to foster development of deeper conceptual understandings among teens. Accordingly, ESITA includes an important student-led environmental science research project component, which provides participants with opportunities to engage in research investigations that are directly linked to relevant, real-world environmental problems and issues facing their communities. Analysis of evidence gleaned from questionnaires, interviews with participants and specific assessment/evaluation instruments indicates that ESITA program activities, including after-school meetings, summer and school year research projects, and conference preparations and presentations has provided students with high-quality inquiry science experiences that increased their knowledge of STEM and IT concepts, as well as their understanding of the nature of the scientific enterprise. In addition, the program has achieved a high degree of success in that it has: enhanced participants' intellectual self-confidence with regard to STEM; developed deeper appreciation of how scientific research can contribute to the maintenance of healthy local environments; developed a greater interest in participating in STEM-related courses of study and after school programs; and improved attitudes toward STEM. Overall

  14. 3D WEB VISUALIZATION OF ENVIRONMENTAL INFORMATION – INTEGRATION OF HETEROGENEOUS DATA SOURCES WHEN PROVIDING NAVIGATION AND INTERACTION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Herman

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available 3D information is essential for a number of applications used daily in various domains such as crisis management, energy management, urban planning, and cultural heritage, as well as pollution and noise mapping, etc. This paper is devoted to the issue of 3D modelling from the levels of buildings to cities. The theoretical sections comprise an analysis of cartographic principles for the 3D visualization of spatial data as well as a review of technologies and data formats used in the visualization of 3D models. Emphasis was placed on the verification of available web technologies; for example, X3DOM library was chosen for the implementation of a proof-of-concept web application. The created web application displays a 3D model of the city district of Nový Lískovec in Brno, the Czech Republic. The developed 3D visualization shows a terrain model, 3D buildings, noise pollution, and other related information. Attention was paid to the areas important for handling heterogeneous input data, the design of interactive functionality, and navigation assistants. The advantages, limitations, and future development of the proposed concept are discussed in the conclusions.

  15. Strategies to improve effectiveness of physical activity coaching systems: Development of personas for providing tailored feedback.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Achterkamp, Reinoud; Dekker-Van Weering, Marit Gh; Evering, Richard Mh; Tabak, Monique; Timmerman, Josien G; Hermens, Hermie J; Vollenbroek-Hutten, Miriam Mr

    2016-06-27

    Mobile physical activity interventions can be improved by incorporating behavioural change theories. Relations between self-efficacy, stage of change, and physical activity are investigated, enabling development of feedback strategies that can be used to improve their effectiveness. A total of 325 healthy control participants and 82 patients wore an activity monitor. Participants completed a self-efficacy or stage of change questionnaire. Results show that higher self-efficacy is related to higher activity levels. Patients are less active than healthy controls and show a larger drop in physical activity over the day. Patients in the maintenance stage of change are more active than patients in lower stages of change, but show an equally large drop in level of physical activity. Findings suggest that coaching should at least be tailored to level of self-efficacy, stage of change, and physical activity pattern. Tailored coaching strategies are developed, which suggest that increasing self-efficacy of users is most important. Guidelines are provided. © The Author(s) 2016.

  16. DURIP - Improved Eye Movement Monitoring Capabilities for Studies in Visual Cognition

    Science.gov (United States)

    1990-02-27

    88 to 31 Nov 89 4. T"TL AND SUBMIU S UD UBR DURIP - IMPROVED EYE MOVE14ENT MONITORING CAPABILITIES G - AFOSR-89-0191 FOR STUDIES IN VISUAL COGNITION ...7 r,~~93C 14. SUUIOCT TERM iS NIUMBE Of PAGIS ILB PRICE CODE 1. CLS0CIM It. SECURITY CLASSICATION 9S. SICUA CLSSN4CAH IL A ESTR OF REPORT OP TIS PAGE...OF ABSTRACT NIN t14 zw-mim I 69 DARTMOUTH MEDICAL SCHOOL DEPARTMENT OF PSYCHIATRY Program in Cognitive Neuroscience Sr Pike House Hanover, NH 03756

  17. Adaptation effects in static postural control by providing simultaneous visual feedback of center of pressure and center of gravity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takeda, Kenta; Mani, Hiroki; Hasegawa, Naoya; Sato, Yuki; Tanaka, Shintaro; Maejima, Hiroshi; Asaka, Tadayoshi

    2017-07-19

    The benefit of visual feedback of the center of pressure (COP) on quiet standing is still debatable. This study aimed to investigate the adaptation effects of visual feedback training using both the COP and center of gravity (COG) during quiet standing. Thirty-four healthy young adults were divided into three groups randomly (COP + COG, COP, and control groups). A force plate was used to calculate the coordinates of the COP in the anteroposterior (COPAP) and mediolateral (COPML) directions. A motion analysis system was used to calculate the coordinates of the center of mass (COM) in both directions (COMAP and COMML). The coordinates of the COG in the AP direction (COGAP) were obtained from the force plate signals. Augmented visual feedback was presented on a screen in the form of fluctuation circles in the vertical direction that moved upward as the COPAP and/or COGAP moved forward and vice versa. The COP + COG group received the real-time COPAP and COGAP feedback simultaneously, whereas the COP group received the real-time COPAP feedback only. The control group received no visual feedback. In the training session, the COP + COG group was required to maintain an even distance between the COPAP and COGAP and reduce the COGAP fluctuation, whereas the COP group was required to reduce the COPAP fluctuation while standing on a foam pad. In test sessions, participants were instructed to keep their standing posture as quiet as possible on the foam pad before (pre-session) and after (post-session) the training sessions. In the post-session, the velocity and root mean square of COMAP in the COP + COG group were lower than those in the control group. In addition, the absolute value of the sum of the COP - COM distances in the COP + COG group was lower than that in the COP group. Furthermore, positive correlations were found between the COMAP velocity and COP - COM parameters. The results suggest that the novel visual feedback training that

  18. Visual Recognition Memory Test Performance was Improved in Older Adults by Extending Encoding Time and Repeating Test Trials

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Theppitak, Chalermsiri; Lai, Viet; Izumi, Hiroyuki; Higuchi, Yoshiyuki; Kumudini, Ganga; Movahed, Mehrnoosh; Kumashiro, Masaharu; Fujiki, Nobuhiro

    2014-01-01

    Objectives: The aim of this study was to investigate whether the combination of extension of the encoding time and repetition of a test trial would improve the visual recognition memory performance in older adults. Methods...

  19. [A web information system for enhancing management and improving special care services provided to dependent persons].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alvarez-Bermejo, J A; Hernández-Capel, D M; Belmonte-Ureña, L J; Roca-Piera, J

    2009-01-01

    Ensuring the quality of services provided in centres where dependent persons are seen by specialist services, by improving and enhancing how information -salary, control of tasks, patients' records, etc.- is shared between staff and carers. A web information system has been developed and experimentally deployed to accomplish this. The accuracy of the system was evaluated by assessing how confident the employees were with it rather than relying on statistical data. It was experimentally deployed since January 2009 in Asociación de Personas con Discapacidad "El Saliente" that manages several day centres in Almeria, for dependent persons over 65 years old, particularly those affected by Alzheimer' disease. Incidence data was collected during the experimental period. A total of 84% of the employees thought that the system helped to manage documents, administrative duties, etc., and 92.4% said they could attend to really important tasks because the system was responsible for alerting them of every task, such as medication timetables, checking all patients were present (to prevent an Alzheimer affected person leaving the centre) etc. During this period the incidences reported were reduced by about a 30%, although data is still partially representative. As the life expectancy of the population gets longer, these centres will increase. Providing systems such as the one presented here would be of great help for administrative duties (sensitive data protection...) as well as ensuring high quality care and attention.

  20. Spatial Cues Provided by Sound Improve Postural Stabilization: Evidence of a Spatial Auditory Map?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gandemer, Lennie; Parseihian, Gaetan; Kronland-Martinet, Richard; Bourdin, Christophe

    2017-01-01

    It has long been suggested that sound plays a role in the postural control process. Few studies however have explored sound and posture interactions. The present paper focuses on the specific impact of audition on posture, seeking to determine the attributes of sound that may be useful for postural purposes. We investigated the postural sway of young, healthy blindfolded subjects in two experiments involving different static auditory environments. In the first experiment, we compared effect on sway in a simple environment built from three static sound sources in two different rooms: a normal vs. an anechoic room. In the second experiment, the same auditory environment was enriched in various ways, including the ambisonics synthesis of a immersive environment, and subjects stood on two different surfaces: a foam vs. a normal surface. The results of both experiments suggest that the spatial cues provided by sound can be used to improve postural stability. The richer the auditory environment, the better this stabilization. We interpret these results by invoking the “spatial hearing map” theory: listeners build their own mental representation of their surrounding environment, which provides them with spatial landmarks that help them to better stabilize. PMID:28694770

  1. Spatial Cues Provided by Sound Improve Postural Stabilization: Evidence of a Spatial Auditory Map?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gandemer, Lennie; Parseihian, Gaetan; Kronland-Martinet, Richard; Bourdin, Christophe

    2017-01-01

    It has long been suggested that sound plays a role in the postural control process. Few studies however have explored sound and posture interactions. The present paper focuses on the specific impact of audition on posture, seeking to determine the attributes of sound that may be useful for postural purposes. We investigated the postural sway of young, healthy blindfolded subjects in two experiments involving different static auditory environments. In the first experiment, we compared effect on sway in a simple environment built from three static sound sources in two different rooms: a normal vs. an anechoic room. In the second experiment, the same auditory environment was enriched in various ways, including the ambisonics synthesis of a immersive environment, and subjects stood on two different surfaces: a foam vs. a normal surface. The results of both experiments suggest that the spatial cues provided by sound can be used to improve postural stability. The richer the auditory environment, the better this stabilization. We interpret these results by invoking the "spatial hearing map" theory: listeners build their own mental representation of their surrounding environment, which provides them with spatial landmarks that help them to better stabilize.

  2. Spatial Cues Provided by Sound Improve Postural Stabilization: Evidence of a Spatial Auditory Map?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lennie Gandemer

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available It has long been suggested that sound plays a role in the postural control process. Few studies however have explored sound and posture interactions. The present paper focuses on the specific impact of audition on posture, seeking to determine the attributes of sound that may be useful for postural purposes. We investigated the postural sway of young, healthy blindfolded subjects in two experiments involving different static auditory environments. In the first experiment, we compared effect on sway in a simple environment built from three static sound sources in two different rooms: a normal vs. an anechoic room. In the second experiment, the same auditory environment was enriched in various ways, including the ambisonics synthesis of a immersive environment, and subjects stood on two different surfaces: a foam vs. a normal surface. The results of both experiments suggest that the spatial cues provided by sound can be used to improve postural stability. The richer the auditory environment, the better this stabilization. We interpret these results by invoking the “spatial hearing map” theory: listeners build their own mental representation of their surrounding environment, which provides them with spatial landmarks that help them to better stabilize.

  3. Improving outcomes of transported newborns in Panama: impact of a nationwide neonatal provider education program.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spector, J M; Villanueva, H Solano; Brito, M E; Sosa, P Gallardo

    2009-07-01

    To determine whether national distribution of a neonatal provider education program (the S.T.A.B.L.E. Program) positively impacts the health of ill newborns that require transport in Panama. The investigation used a prospective, pre- and postintervention study design with a double pretest. The 10 birthing centers in Panama that routinely transport the greatest number of newborns received the education program intervention. Primary outcomes were body temperature and serum glucose level on arrival at the referral facility. Length of stay and mortality were evaluated as secondary outcomes. Variation in outcome indicators was compared for 7 months before and after the intervention. Data from all live newborns transported from outlying birthing center study sites during the study dates were included in the investigation. A total of 136 and 146 newborns were transported during the observation and postintervention periods, respectively. Significantly more patients in the postintervention group had temperatures within the normal range (56% in postintervention group vs 34% in observation group; P<0.01). No statistical difference was observed in serum glucose levels, length of stay or mortality. Distribution of a neonatal provider educational program was associated with improved thermal management of transported newborns in Panama. Further study will help to confirm this association and determine the extent to which these findings are generalizable to other resource-constrained settings.

  4. Do Primary Care Provider Strategies Improve Patient Participation in Colorectal Cancer Screening?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baxter, Nancy N; Sutradhar, Rinku; Li, Qing; Daly, Corinne; Honein-AbouHaidar, Gladys N; Richardson, Devon P; Del Giudice, Lisa; Tinmouth, Jill; Paszat, Lawrence; Rabeneck, Linda

    2017-04-01

    Screening rates for colorectal cancer (CRC) remain suboptimal. The impact of provider strategies to enhance screening participation in the population is uncertain. The objective of this study was to determine the effect of provider strategies to increase screening in a single-payer system. A population-based survey was conducted in primary care providers (PCPs) linked to patients using administrative data in Ontario, Canada. Patients were due for CRC screening from April 2012 to March 2013. Patients were followed up until 31 March 2014. We determined time to become up-to-date with CRC screening. Cox proportional hazards models examined the association between PCP strategies and uptake of screening, adjusted for physician and patient factors. A total of 717 PCPs and their 147,834 rostered patients due for CRC screening were included. Most physicians employed strategies to enhance screening participation, including electronic medical record use, reminders, generation of lists, audit and feedback reports, or designating staff responsible for screening. No single strategy was strongly associated with screening. For those >1 year overdue, a systematic approach to generate lists of patients overdue for screening was weakly associated with screening uptake (hazard ratio (HR)=1.14, 95% CI: 1.03-1.26, P=0.04 >5 years overdue vs. <1 year overdue). The use of multiple PCP strategies was associated with screening participation (HR=1.27, 95% CI: 1.16-1.39, P<0.0001 for PCPs using 4-5 vs. 0-1 strategies). Practice-based strategies were self-reported. In practice, while individual PCP strategies have little effect, the use of multiple strategies to enhance screening appears to improve CRC screening uptake in patients.

  5. Improving participation rates by providing choice of participation mode: two randomized controlled trials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heijmans, Naomi; van Lieshout, Jan; Wensing, Michel

    2015-04-02

    Low participation rates reduce effective sample size, statistical power and can increase risk for selection bias. Previous research suggests that offering choice of participation mode can improve participation rates. However, few head-to-head trials compared choice of participation mode using telephone interviews and postal questionnaires as modes of interest. Aiming to explore effects of choice of participation, two randomized controlled trials were performed comparing participation rates of patients provided with and without choice of participation mode, using interviews and questionnaires as participation modes. Two trials were embedded in a larger study on cardiovascular risk management in primary care. Patients with a chronic cardiovascular condition recruited for the larger study were invited to participate in an additional survey on social networks, using invitations with and without choice of participation mode. Primary outcome was participation rate. Other outcomes of interest were participation rate conditional on willingness to participate, and initial willingness to participate. In trial 1 we compared outcomes after choice of participation mode (interview or questionnaire) with invitations for participation in a telephone interview. In Trial 2 results for choice of participation mode were compared with postal questionnaires. In Trial 1 no differences were found in participation rates (65% vs 66%, p = 0.853) although conditional participation rate was highest for interviews (90% vs 72%, p choice of participation mode was provided (90% versus 73%, p choice of participation mode was provided (59% vs 46%, p choice of participation mode had benefit on participation rates compared to invitations to participate in questionnaires, but not when compared to invitations to participate in telephone interviews. Current Controlled Trials ISRCTN89237105 .

  6. Improvement of visual debugging tool. Shortening the elapsed time for getting data and adding new functions to compare/combine a set of visualized data

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Matsuda, Katsuyuki; Takemiya, Hiroshi

    2001-03-01

    The visual debugging tool 'vdebug' has been improved, which was designed for the debugging of programs for scientific computing. Improved were the following two points; (1) shortening the elapsed time required for getting appropriate data to visualize; (2) adding new functions which enable to compare and/or combine a set of visualized data originated from two or more different programs. As for shortening elapsed time for getting data, with the improved version of 'vdebug', we could achieve the following results; over hundred times shortening the elapsed time with dbx, pdbx of SX-4 and over ten times with ndb of SR2201. As for the new functions to compare/combine visualized data, it was confirmed that we could easily checked the consistency between the computational results obtained in each calculational steps on two different computers: SP and ONYX. In this report, we illustrate how the tool 'vdebug' has been improved with an example. (author)

  7. Numerical integration methods and layout improvements in the context of dynamic RNA visualization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shabash, Boris; Wiese, Kay C

    2017-05-30

    RNA visualization software tools have traditionally presented a static visualization of RNA molecules with limited ability for users to interact with the resulting image once it is complete. Only a few tools allowed for dynamic structures. One such tool is jViz.RNA. Currently, jViz.RNA employs a unique method for the creation of the RNA molecule layout by mapping the RNA nucleotides into vertexes in a graph, which we call the detailed graph, and then utilizes a Newtonian mechanics inspired system of forces to calculate a layout for the RNA molecule. The work presented here focuses on improvements to jViz.RNA that allow the drawing of RNA secondary structures according to common drawing conventions, as well as dramatic run-time performance improvements. This is done first by presenting an alternative method for mapping the RNA molecule into a graph, which we call the compressed graph, and then employing advanced numerical integration methods for the compressed graph representation. Comparing the compressed graph and detailed graph implementations, we find that the compressed graph produces results more consistent with RNA drawing conventions. However, we also find that employing the compressed graph method requires a more sophisticated initial layout to produce visualizations that would require minimal user interference. Comparing the two numerical integration methods demonstrates the higher stability of the Backward Euler method, and its resulting ability to handle much larger time steps, a high priority feature for any software which entails user interaction. The work in this manuscript presents the preferred use of compressed graphs to detailed ones, as well as the advantages of employing the Backward Euler method over the Forward Euler method. These improvements produce more stable as well as visually aesthetic representations of the RNA secondary structures. The results presented demonstrate that both the compressed graph representation, as well as the Backward

  8. Active training and driving-specific feedback improve older drivers' visual search prior to lane changes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lavallière, Martin; Simoneau, Martin; Tremblay, Mathieu; Laurendeau, Denis; Teasdale, Normand

    2012-03-02

    Driving retraining classes may offer an opportunity to attenuate some effects of aging that may alter driving skills. Unfortunately, there is evidence that classroom programs (driving refresher courses) do not improve the driving performance of older drivers. The aim of the current study was to evaluate if simulator training sessions with video-based feedback can modify visual search behaviors of older drivers while changing lanes in urban driving. In order to evaluate the effectiveness of the video-based feedback training, 10 older drivers who received a driving refresher course and feedback about their driving performance were tested with an on-road standardized evaluation before and after participating to a simulator training program (Feedback group). Their results were compared to a Control group (12 older drivers) who received the same refresher course and in-simulator active practice as the Feedback group without receiving driving-specific feedback. After attending the training program, the Control group showed no increase in the frequency of the visual inspection of three regions of interests (rear view and left side mirrors, and blind spot). In contrast, for the Feedback group, combining active training and driving-specific feedbacks increased the frequency of blind spot inspection by 100% (32.3 to 64.9% of verification before changing lanes). These results suggest that simulator training combined with driving-specific feedbacks helped older drivers to improve their visual inspection strategies, and that in-simulator training transferred positively to on-road driving. In order to be effective, it is claimed that driving programs should include active practice sessions with driving-specific feedbacks. Simulators offer a unique environment for developing such programs adapted to older drivers' needs.

  9. Active training and driving-specific feedback improve older drivers' visual search prior to lane changes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lavallière Martin

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Driving retraining classes may offer an opportunity to attenuate some effects of aging that may alter driving skills. Unfortunately, there is evidence that classroom programs (driving refresher courses do not improve the driving performance of older drivers. The aim of the current study was to evaluate if simulator training sessions with video-based feedback can modify visual search behaviors of older drivers while changing lanes in urban driving. Methods In order to evaluate the effectiveness of the video-based feedback training, 10 older drivers who received a driving refresher course and feedback about their driving performance were tested with an on-road standardized evaluation before and after participating to a simulator training program (Feedback group. Their results were compared to a Control group (12 older drivers who received the same refresher course and in-simulator active practice as the Feedback group without receiving driving-specific feedback. Results After attending the training program, the Control group showed no increase in the frequency of the visual inspection of three regions of interests (rear view and left side mirrors, and blind spot. In contrast, for the Feedback group, combining active training and driving-specific feedbacks increased the frequency of blind spot inspection by 100% (32.3 to 64.9% of verification before changing lanes. Conclusions These results suggest that simulator training combined with driving-specific feedbacks helped older drivers to improve their visual inspection strategies, and that in-simulator training transferred positively to on-road driving. In order to be effective, it is claimed that driving programs should include active practice sessions with driving-specific feedbacks. Simulators offer a unique environment for developing such programs adapted to older drivers' needs.

  10. Improving the discrimination of hand motor imagery via virtual reality based visual guidance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liang, Shuang; Choi, Kup-Sze; Qin, Jing; Pang, Wai-Man; Wang, Qiong; Heng, Pheng-Ann

    2016-08-01

    While research on the brain-computer interface (BCI) has been active in recent years, how to get high-quality electrical brain signals to accurately recognize human intentions for reliable communication and interaction is still a challenging task. The evidence has shown that visually guided motor imagery (MI) can modulate sensorimotor electroencephalographic (EEG) rhythms in humans, but how to design and implement efficient visual guidance during MI in order to produce better event-related desynchronization (ERD) patterns is still unclear. The aim of this paper is to investigate the effect of using object-oriented movements in a virtual environment as visual guidance on the modulation of sensorimotor EEG rhythms generated by hand MI. To improve the classification accuracy on MI, we further propose an algorithm to automatically extract subject-specific optimal frequency and time bands for the discrimination of ERD patterns produced by left and right hand MI. The experimental results show that the average classification accuracy of object-directed scenarios is much better than that of non-object-directed scenarios (76.87% vs. 69.66%). The result of the t-test measuring the difference between them is statistically significant (p = 0.0207). When compared to algorithms based on fixed frequency and time bands, contralateral dominant ERD patterns can be enhanced by using the subject-specific optimal frequency and the time bands obtained by our proposed algorithm. These findings have the potential to improve the efficacy and robustness of MI-based BCI applications. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Video game training to improve selective visual attention in older adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belchior, Patrícia; Marsiske, Michael; Sisco, Shannon M; Yam, Anna; Bavelier, Daphne; Ball, Karlene; Mann, William C

    2013-07-01

    The current study investigated the effect of video game training on older adult's useful field of view performance (the UFOV® test). Fifty-eight older adult participants were randomized to receive practice with the target action game (Medal of Honor), a placebo control arcade game (Tetris), a clinically validated UFOV training program, or into a no contact control group. Examining pretest-posttest change in selective visual attention, the UFOV improved significantly more than the game groups; all three intervention groups improved significantly more than no-contact controls. There was a lack of difference between the two game conditions, differing from findings with younger adults. Discussion considers whether games posing less challenge might still be effective interventions for elders, and whether optimal training dosages should be higher.

  12. Medical Image Visual Appearance Improvement Using Bihistogram Bezier Curve Contrast Enhancement: Data from the Osteoarthritis Initiative

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gan, Hong-Seng; Swee, Tan Tian; Abdul Karim, Ahmad Helmy; Sayuti, Khairil Amir; Abdul Kadir, Mohammed Rafiq; Tham, Weng-Kit; Wong, Liang-Xuan; Chaudhary, Kashif T.; Yupapin, Preecha P.

    2014-01-01

    Well-defined image can assist user to identify region of interest during segmentation. However, complex medical image is usually characterized by poor tissue contrast and low background luminance. The contrast improvement can lift image visual quality, but the fundamental contrast enhancement methods often overlook the sudden jump problem. In this work, the proposed bihistogram Bezier curve contrast enhancement introduces the concept of “adequate contrast enhancement” to overcome sudden jump problem in knee magnetic resonance image. Since every image produces its own intensity distribution, the adequate contrast enhancement checks on the image's maximum intensity distortion and uses intensity discrepancy reduction to generate Bezier transform curve. The proposed method improves tissue contrast and preserves pertinent knee features without compromising natural image appearance. Besides, statistical results from Fisher's Least Significant Difference test and the Duncan test have consistently indicated that the proposed method outperforms fundamental contrast enhancement methods to exalt image visual quality. As the study is limited to relatively small image database, future works will include a larger dataset with osteoarthritic images to assess the clinical effectiveness of the proposed method to facilitate the image inspection. PMID:24977191

  13. Medical Image Visual Appearance Improvement Using Bihistogram Bezier Curve Contrast Enhancement: Data from the Osteoarthritis Initiative

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hong-Seng Gan

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Well-defined image can assist user to identify region of interest during segmentation. However, complex medical image is usually characterized by poor tissue contrast and low background luminance. The contrast improvement can lift image visual quality, but the fundamental contrast enhancement methods often overlook the sudden jump problem. In this work, the proposed bihistogram Bezier curve contrast enhancement introduces the concept of “adequate contrast enhancement” to overcome sudden jump problem in knee magnetic resonance image. Since every image produces its own intensity distribution, the adequate contrast enhancement checks on the image’s maximum intensity distortion and uses intensity discrepancy reduction to generate Bezier transform curve. The proposed method improves tissue contrast and preserves pertinent knee features without compromising natural image appearance. Besides, statistical results from Fisher’s Least Significant Difference test and the Duncan test have consistently indicated that the proposed method outperforms fundamental contrast enhancement methods to exalt image visual quality. As the study is limited to relatively small image database, future works will include a larger dataset with osteoarthritic images to assess the clinical effectiveness of the proposed method to facilitate the image inspection.

  14. Motivation and Academic Improvement Using Augmented Reality for 3D Architectural Visualization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David FONSECA ESCUDERO

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available This paper discuss about the results from the evaluation of the motivation, user profile and level of satisfaction in the workflow using 3D augmented visualization of complex models in educational environments. The study shows the results of different experiments conducted with first and second year students from Architecture and Science and Construction Technologies (Old Spanish degree of Building Engineering, which is recognized at a European level. We have used a mixed method combining both quantitative and qualitative student assessment in order to complete a general overview of using new technologies, mobile devices and advanced visual methods in academic environments. The results show us how the students involved in the experiments improved their academic results and their implication in the subject, which allow us to conclude that the hybrid technologies improve both spatial skills and the student motivation, a key concept in the actual educational framework composed by digital-native students and a great range of different applications and interfaces useful for teaching and learning.

  15. Feedback providing improvement strategies and reflection on feedback use: Effects on students' writing motivation, process, and performance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Duijnhouwer, H.; Prins, F.J.; Stokking, K.M.

    2012-01-01

    This study investigated the effects of feedback providing improvement strategies and a reflection assignment on students’ writing motivation, process, and performance. Students in the experimental feedback condition (n = 41) received feedback including improvement strategies, whereas students in the

  16. Providing Quality Therapeutics in Switzerland: Role of the Stakeholders and Recent Incentives for Further Improvements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Besson, Marie; Samer, Caroline; Rollason, Victoria; Dayer, Pierre; Desmeules, Jules

    2015-07-01

    Quality therapeutics play an important role in Switzerland's health care and economy. Switzerland holds a key position in the world of research and development, as well as in drug production. Recently, new emphasis has been placed on promoting clinical research and maintaining Switzerland's position as a center of excellence in the field. Recent revisions to the law regarding medical trials in human research allow for better allocation of regulatory resources and simplified procedures for drugs already authorized in Switzerland. The country has its own regulatory agency, the Swiss Agency for Therapeutic Products (Swissmedic), which is a public institution of the Swiss government. Swissmedic is responsible for ensuring safety in medicines, particularly regarding authorizations and market surveillance in the sector of medicinal products and medical devices. Although the centralized authorization procedure of the European Union for medicines does not apply to Switzerland, there are mutual recognition mechanisms between the Swiss medicine regulatory authority and the European Medicines Agency. Swissmedic is also in charge of postmarketing safety and oversees the national pharmacovigilance center, which collaborates closely with the World Health Organization center in Uppsala. In addition, university hospital-based clinical pharmacologists, who are involved in basic science and clinical research, regulatory affairs, ethics committees, and pharmacovigilance, promote quality therapeutics. This article discusses the role of the various stakeholders and the recent efforts made to provide a better allocation of resources aimed at further improving quality therapeutics in Switzerland. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier HS Journals, Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Clear hydro-gel, compared to ointment, provides improved eye comfort after brief surgery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smolle, Michaela; Keller, Christian; Pinggera, Germar; Deibl, Martina; Rieder, Josef; Lirk, Philipp

    2004-02-01

    Anesthesia impairs lid closure and decreases tear secretion and stability. Protection may, in principle, be conveyed by manual eye closure, taping the eyelids closed, and by instillation of protective substances into the conjunctival sac. Both hydro-gels and ointments are used in clinical practice. It was the objective of the present study to compare a transparent clear ocular hydro-gel (Vidisic) and a commonly used dexpanthenol and vitamin A (Oleovit) based ointment as examples of these classes of ocular lubricants in their capability to provide perioperative eye comfort. Furthermore, their bacteriostatic properties were assessed in vitro. Ninety-two consecutive patients undergoing total iv general anesthesia were randomly allocated to receive either ocular dexpanthenol ointment or a clear hydro-gel after induction of anesthesia. Subjects were assessed one hour following termination of anesthesia. Main findings were an increased incidence of foreign body sensation, adherent eyelashes and disturbance elicited by blurred vision in the ointment group as compared to clear hydro-gel (P < 0.001). Bacterial growth was significantly attenuated by the ocular hydro-gel as compared to ointment. Clear ocular hydro-gel offers improved patient comfort and decreased ocular inflammation as compared to conventional eye ointments. In addition, it decreases bacterial growth. Therefore, the use of clear ocular hydro-gel for perioperative ocular comfort is suggested.

  18. The Importance of Providing Multiple-Channel Sections in Dredging Activities to Improve Fish Habitat Environments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hung-Pin Chiu

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available After Typhoon Morakot, dredging engineering was conducted while taking the safety of humans and structures into consideration, but partial stream reaches were formed in the multiple-channel sections in Cishan Stream because of anthropogenic and natural influences. This study mainly explores the distribution of each fish species in both the multiple- and single-channel sections in the Cishan Stream. Parts of the environments did not exhibit significant differences according to a one-way ANOVA comparing the multiple- and single-channel sections, but certain areas of the multiple-channel sections had more diverse habitats. Each fish species was widely distributed by non-metric multidimensional scaling in the multiple-channel sections as compared to those in the single-channel sections. In addition, according to the principal component analysis, each fish species has a preferred environment, and all of them have a wide choice of habitat environments in the multiple-channel sections. Finally, the existence of multiple-channel sections could significantly affect the existence of the fish species under consideration in this study. However, no environmental factors were found to have an influence on fish species in the single-channel sections, with the exception of Rhinogobius nantaiensis. The results show that providing multiple-channel sections in dredging activities could improve fish habitat environments.

  19. Education and Visual Information Improves Effectiveness of Ultrasound-Guided Local Injections on Shoulder Pain and Associated Anxiety Level: A Randomized Controlled Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karkucak, Murat; Cilesizoglu, Nurce; Capkin, Erhan; Can, Ipek; Batmaz, Ibrahim; Kerimoglu, Servet; Onder, Mustafa Avni; Karaca, Adem; Ayar, Ahmet

    2016-01-01

    Local injections are widely used in patients with a painful shoulder. The aim of this study was to evaluate the possible impact of patients' visual information on the effectiveness of ultrasound (US)-guided local injections on anxiety levels and shoulder pain. A total of 151 patients, scheduled for local injection owing to shoulder pain, were randomly assigned into two groups in a consecutive order. Patients in group I (n = 72) were provided information related to US findings and allowed to watch the procedures from the monitor, whereas patients in group II (n = 79) received the injection only without any collaboration. Data were collected from both groups immediately before and after injections through visual analog scale and questionnaire (the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory [STAI] forms 1 and 2). US-guided local injections provided significant improvement of anxiety and pain in both groups, irrespective of providing visual information. Group I and group II comparisons with respect to the visual analog scale, STAI 1, and STAI 2 yielded significant difference only for postinjection STAI 2 in group I (P = 0.006). Intragroup comparisons revealed significant differences between preinjection and postinjection values (group I: visual analog scale, P = 0.001; STAI form 1, P = 0.001; STAI form 2, P = 0.002; group II: visual analog scale, P = 0.001; STAI form 1, P = 0.002; STAI form 2, P = 0.042). There was no significant difference between the groups in terms of postinjection satisfaction levels from the procedures (P = 0.824). Performing US-guided shoulder injections with patient visual information provides positive contributions to coping with pain and anxiety. In particular, the patient collaboration-based US-guided injections have positive consequences on patients' long-standing "trait-anxiety" levels.

  20. [LAMINAR LOCATION OF NEURONS PROVIDING INTERHEMISPHERIC CONNECTIONS IN THE VISUAL CORTEX IN CATS WITH IMPAIRMENTS OF BINOCULAR VISION].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toporova, S N; Shkorbatova, P Yu; Alekseyenko, S V

    2015-01-01

    The distributio of cells in the visual cortical layers of intact cats (n=7) and cats with experimentally induced strabismus (n=10) and monocular deprivation (n=5) was studied after microiontophoretic injection of horseradish peroxidase into the ocular-dominance columns in areas 17, 18 and the transition zone 17/18. It was found that in cats with impaired binocular vision, the callosal cells were located deeper in layers of I/II, and higher - in layer IV, as compared to those in intact cats. Also in cats with impaired binocular vision, the proportion of callosal cells in layer IV was increased, while in layers II/III it was reduced as compared to intact cats. The most pronounced changes were noted in monocular deprived animals. These findings suggest an important role of sensory input in the formation of the callosal neurons layer distribution.

  1. [The size of cells providing interhemispheric and intrahemispheric connections in the visual cortex of binocular vision-impaired cats].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alekseenko, S V; Toporova, S N; Shkorbatova, P Iu

    2011-03-01

    The size (somatic area) of 658 cells located in layers 2/3 of cortical areas 17, 18 of both hemispheres in intact monocularly deprived and bilateral strabismic cats was measured. These cells were retrogradely labelled after injections of horseradish peroxidase into ocular dominance columns in areas 17, 18. In all groups of cats, the mean somatic area of callosal cells was significantly larger than the mean somatic area of intrahemispheric cells. It was found that the mean somatic area of callosal cells was increased by 26.6% in monocularly deprived cats and by 20.2% in strabismic cats in relation to the mean somatic area of callosal cells in intact cats. In addition, the mean somatic area of intrahemispheric cells in monocularly deprived cats was indistinguishable from the mean somatic area of intrahemispheric cells in strabismic cats and in intact cats. It is concluded that early binocular vision impairments produce enlargement of callosal cells' size in the visual cortex.

  2. LEARNERS: Interdisciplinary Learning Technology Projects Provide Visualizations and Simulations for Use of Geospatial Data in the Classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farrell, N.; Hoban, S.

    2001-05-01

    The NASA Leading Educators to Applications, Research and NASA-related Educational Resources in Science (LEARNERS) initiative supports seven projects for enhancing kindergarten-to-high school science, geography, technology and mathematics education through Internet-based products derived from content on NASA's mission. Topics incorporated in LEARNERS projects include remote sensing of the Earth for agriculture and weather/climate studies, virtual exploration of remote worlds using robotics and digital imagery. Learners are engaged in inquiry or problem-based learning, often assuming the role of an expert scientist as part of an interdisciplinary science team, to study and explain practical problems using real-time NASA data. The presentation/poster will demonstrate novel uses of remote sensing data for K-12 and Post-Secondary students. This will include the use of visualizations, tools for educators, datasets, and classroom scenarios.

  3. Interprofessional Oral Health Education Improves Knowledge, Confidence, and Practice for Pediatric Healthcare Providers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooper, Devon; Kim, JungSoo; Duderstadt, Karen; Stewart, Ray; Lin, Brent; Alkon, Abbey

    2017-01-01

    Dental caries is the most prevalent chronic childhood disease in the United States. Dental caries affects the health of 60-90% of school-aged children worldwide. The prevalence of untreated early childhood dental caries is 19% for children 2-5 years of age in the U.S. Some factors that contribute to the progression of dental caries include socioeconomic status, access to dental care, and lack of anticipatory guidance. The prevalence of dental caries remains highest for children from specific ethnic or racial groups, especially those living in underserved areas where there may be limited access to a dentist. Although researchers have acknowledged the various links between oral health and overall systemic health, oral health care is not usually a component of pediatric primary health care. To address this public health crisis and oral health disparity in children, new collaborative efforts among health professionals is critical for dental disease prevention and optimal oral health. This evaluation study focused on a 10-week interprofessional practice and education (IPE) course on children's oral health involving dental, osteopathic medical, and nurse practitioner students at the University of California, San Francisco. This study's objective was to evaluate changes in knowledge, confidence, attitude, and clinical practice in children's oral health of the students completed the course. Thirty-one students participated in the IPE and completed demographic questionnaires and four questionnaires before and after the IPE course: (1) course content knowledge, (2) confidence, (3) attitudes, and (4) clinical practice. Results showed a statistically significant improvement in the overall knowledge of children's oral health topics, confidence in their ability to provide oral health services, and clinical practice. There was no statistically significant difference in attitude, but there was an upward trend toward positivity. To conclude, this IPE evaluation showed that

  4. Improving Attitudes Toward STEM By Providing Urban-Based Environmental Science Research Opportunities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cuff, K. E.; Molinaro, M.

    2005-12-01

    Over the past decade, numerous calls have been made for the need to increase the participation of the nation's underrepresented population in science, technology, engineering, and technology (STEM) fields of endeavor. A key element in improving the less than impressive conditions that now exist with regard to this issue, is the development of effective approaches that result in positive changes in young people's attitudes toward education in general, and STEM subject matter in particular during the early stages of their intellectual development. The Environmental Science Information Technology Activities (ESITA) program provides opportunities for under-represented grades 9 - 10 students in the East San Francisco Bay Area to learn about and apply key STEM concepts and related skills. Consisting of two-year-long after school programs at community center and school-based sites, as well as a Summer Research Institute, the ESITA program engages participants in a combination of STEM content learning activities and environmental science research projects that address issues relevant to their communities. Design of the ESITA program has been informed by: 1) pilot-study data that indicated key elements necessary for ensuring high levels of participant enthusiasm and interest; 2) a conceptual framework for development of instructional materials grounded in recent research about student learning of STEM content; and 3) research about effective after school programs that present academic content. Throughout the program's two-year existence, ESITA students have participated in the following projects: investigations of the distribution of elevated lead levels in drinking water samples from Washington, D.C.; air and water quality studies in and around a popular lake situated within the nation's oldest wildlife refuge, located in downtown Oakland, California; and studies of the relationship between airborne particulate matter concentrations in Richmond, California, and activity at

  5. Interprofessional Oral Health Education Improves Knowledge, Confidence, and Practice for Pediatric Healthcare Providers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Devon Cooper

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Dental caries is the most prevalent chronic childhood disease in the United States. Dental caries affects the health of 60–90% of school-aged children worldwide. The prevalence of untreated early childhood dental caries is 19% for children 2–5 years of age in the U.S. Some factors that contribute to the progression of dental caries include socioeconomic status, access to dental care, and lack of anticipatory guidance. The prevalence of dental caries remains highest for children from specific ethnic or racial groups, especially those living in underserved areas where there may be limited access to a dentist. Although researchers have acknowledged the various links between oral health and overall systemic health, oral health care is not usually a component of pediatric primary health care. To address this public health crisis and oral health disparity in children, new collaborative efforts among health professionals is critical for dental disease prevention and optimal oral health. This evaluation study focused on a 10-week interprofessional practice and education (IPE course on children’s oral health involving dental, osteopathic medical, and nurse practitioner students at the University of California, San Francisco. This study’s objective was to evaluate changes in knowledge, confidence, attitude, and clinical practice in children’s oral health of the students completed the course. Thirty-one students participated in the IPE and completed demographic questionnaires and four questionnaires before and after the IPE course: (1 course content knowledge, (2 confidence, (3 attitudes, and (4 clinical practice. Results showed a statistically significant improvement in the overall knowledge of children’s oral health topics, confidence in their ability to provide oral health services, and clinical practice. There was no statistically significant difference in attitude, but there was an upward trend toward positivity. To conclude, this IPE

  6. Performance improvements from imagery:evidence that internal visual imagery is superior to external visual imagery for slalom performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nichola eCallow

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available We report three experiments investigating the hypothesis that use of internal visual imagery (IVI would be superior to external visual imagery (EVI for the performance of different slalom-based motor tasks. In Experiment 1, three groups of participants (IVI, EVI, and a control group performed a driving-simulation slalom task. The IVI group achieved significantly quicker lap times than EVI and the control group. In Experiment 2, participants performed a downhill running slalom task under both IVI and EVI conditions. Performance was again quickest in the IVI compared to EVI condition, with no differences in accuracy. Experiment 3 used the same group design as Experiment 1, but with participants performing a downhill ski-slalom task. Results revealed the IVI group to be significantly more accurate than the control group, with no significant differences in time taken to complete the task. These results support the beneficial effects of IVI for slalom-based tasks, and significantly advances our knowledge related to the differential effects of visual imagery perspectives on motor performance.

  7. Performance improvements from imagery: evidence that internal visual imagery is superior to external visual imagery for slalom performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Callow, Nichola; Roberts, Ross; Hardy, Lew; Jiang, Dan; Edwards, Martin Gareth

    2013-01-01

    We report three experiments investigating the hypothesis that use of internal visual imagery (IVI) would be superior to external visual imagery (EVI) for the performance of different slalom-based motor tasks. In Experiment 1, three groups of participants (IVI, EVI, and a control group) performed a driving-simulation slalom task. The IVI group achieved significantly quicker lap times than EVI and the control group. In Experiment 2, participants performed a downhill running slalom task under both IVI and EVI conditions. Performance was again quickest in the IVI compared to EVI condition, with no differences in accuracy. Experiment 3 used the same group design as Experiment 1, but with participants performing a downhill ski-slalom task. Results revealed the IVI group to be significantly more accurate than the control group, with no significant differences in time taken to complete the task. These results support the beneficial effects of IVI for slalom-based tasks, and significantly advances our knowledge related to the differential effects of visual imagery perspectives on motor performance.

  8. Bayesian species identification under the multispecies coalescent provides significant improvements to DNA barcoding analyses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Ziheng; Rannala, Bruce

    2017-06-01

    DNA barcoding methods use a single locus (usually the mitochondrial COI gene) to assign unidentified specimens to known species in a library based on a genetic distance threshold that distinguishes between-species divergence from within-species diversity. Recently developed species delimitation methods based on the multispecies coalescent (MSC) model offer an alternative approach to individual assignment using either single-locus or multiloci sequence data. Here, we use simulations to demonstrate three features of an MSC method implemented in the program bpp. First, we show that with one locus, MSC can accurately assign individuals to species without the need for arbitrarily determined distance thresholds (as required for barcoding methods). We provide an example in which no single threshold or barcoding gap exists that can be used to assign all specimens without incurring high error rates. Second, we show that bpp can identify cryptic species that may be misidentified as a single species within the library, potentially improving the accuracy of barcoding libraries. Third, we show that taxon rarity does not present any particular problems for species assignments using bpp and that accurate assignments can be achieved even when only one or a few loci are available. Thus, concerns that have been raised that MSC methods may have problems analysing rare taxa (singletons) are unfounded. Currently, barcoding methods enjoy a huge computational advantage over MSC methods and may be the only approach feasible for massively large data sets, but MSC methods may offer a more stringent test for species that are tentatively assigned by barcoding. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  9. Does hospital admission provide an opportunity for improving pharmacotherapy among elderly inpatients?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniela Oliveira de Melo

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT The purpose of the work was to assess the incidence of potential drug interactions (pDDI, major pDDI, and the use of potentially inappropriate medication (PIM at hospital admission, during hospitalization, and at discharge to evaluate whether hospital admission provides an opportunity for improving pharmacotherapy in elderly patients at a University hospital that has a clinical pharmacist. A prospective cohort study was carried out using data from the medical records of patients admitted to an internal medicine ward. All admissions and prescriptions were monitored between March and August 2006. Micromedex(r DrugReax(r and Beers Criteria 2015 were used to identify pDDI, major pDDI, and PIMs, respectively. A comparison of admission and discharge prescriptions showed the following: an increase in the proportion of patients using antithrombotic agents (76 versus 144; p<0.001, lipid modifying agents (58 versus 81; p=0.024, drugs for acid-related disorders (99 versus 152; p<0.001, and particularly omeprazole (61 versus 87; p=0.015; a decrease in the number of patients prescribed psycholeptics (73 versus 32; p<0.001 and diazepam (54 versus 13; p<0.001; and a decrease in the proportion of patients exposed to polypharmacy (16.1% versus 10.1%; p=0.025, at least one pDDI (44.5% versus 32.8%; p=0.002, major pDDI (19.9% versus 12.2%; p=0.010 or PIM (85.8% versus 51.9%; p<0.001. The conclusion is that admission to a hospital ward that has a clinical pharmacist was associated with a reduction in the number of patients exposed to polypharmacy, pDDI, major pDDI, and the use of PIMs among elderly inpatients.

  10. Motion correction for improved estimation of heart rate using a visual spectrum camera

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tarbox, Elizabeth A.; Rios, Christian; Kaur, Balvinder; Meyer, Shaun; Hirt, Lauren; Tran, Vy; Scott, Kaitlyn; Ikonomidou, Vasiliki

    2017-05-01

    Heart rate measurement using a visual spectrum recording of the face has drawn interest over the last few years as a technology that can have various health and security applications. In our previous work, we have shown that it is possible to estimate the heart beat timing accurately enough to perform heart rate variability analysis for contactless stress detection. However, a major confounding factor in this approach is the presence of movement, which can interfere with the measurements. To mitigate the effects of movement, in this work we propose the use of face detection and tracking based on the Karhunen-Loewe algorithm in order to counteract measurement errors introduced by normal subject motion, as expected during a common seated conversation setting. We analyze the requirements on image acquisition for the algorithm to work, and its performance under different ranges of motion, changes of distance to the camera, as well and the effect of illumination changes due to different positioning with respect to light sources on the acquired signal. Our results suggest that the effect of face tracking on visual-spectrum based cardiac signal estimation depends on the amplitude of the motion. While for larger-scale conversation-induced motion it can significantly improve estimation accuracy, with smaller-scale movements, such as the ones caused by breathing or talking without major movement errors in facial tracking may interfere with signal estimation. Overall, employing facial tracking is a crucial step in adapting this technology to real-life situations with satisfactory results.

  11. Providing the Answers Does Not Improve Performance on a College Final Exam

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glass, Arnold Lewis; Sinha, Neha

    2013-01-01

    In the context of an upper-level psychology course, even when students were given an opportunity to refer to text containing the answers and change their exam responses in order to improve their exam scores, their performance on these questions improved slightly or not at all. Four experiments evaluated competing explanations for the students'…

  12. Strategies to improve effectiveness of physical activity coaching systems: Development of personas for providing tailored feedback

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Achterkamp, Reinoud; van Weering, Marit; Evering, R.M.H.; Tabak, Monique; Timmerman, Josien; Hermens, Hermanus J.; Vollenbroek-Hutten, Miriam Marie Rosé

    2017-01-01

    Mobile physical activity interventions can be improved by incorporating behavioural change theories. Relations between self-efficacy, stage of change, and physical activity are investigated, enabling development of feedback strategies that can be used to improve their effectiveness. A total of 325

  13. EMG-based visual-haptic biofeedback: a tool to improve motor control in children with primary dystonia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casellato, Claudia; Pedrocchi, Alessandra; Zorzi, Giovanna; Vernisse, Lea; Ferrigno, Giancarlo; Nardocci, Nardo

    2013-05-01

    New insights suggest that dystonic motor impairments could also involve a deficit of sensory processing. In this framework, biofeedback, making covert physiological processes more overt, could be useful. The present work proposes an innovative integrated setup which provides the user with an electromyogram (EMG)-based visual-haptic biofeedback during upper limb movements (spiral tracking tasks), to test if augmented sensory feedbacks can induce motor control improvement in patients with primary dystonia. The ad hoc developed real-time control algorithm synchronizes the haptic loop with the EMG reading; the brachioradialis EMG values were used to modify visual and haptic features of the interface: the higher was the EMG level, the higher was the virtual table friction and the background color proportionally moved from green to red. From recordings on dystonic and healthy subjects, statistical results showed that biofeedback has a significant impact, correlated with the local impairment, on the dystonic muscular control. These tests pointed out the effectiveness of biofeedback paradigms in gaining a better specific-muscle voluntary motor control. The flexible tool developed here shows promising prospects of clinical applications and sensorimotor rehabilitation.

  14. Association Between Adherence to Glasses Wearing During Amblyopia Treatment and Improvement in Visual Acuity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maconachie, Gail D E; Farooq, Shegufta; Bush, Glen; Kempton, Julie; Proudlock, Frank A; Gottlob, Irene

    2016-12-01

    Occlusion dose monitors have helped establish that better adherence to occlusion is associated with improved visual outcomes in patients undergoing amblyopia treatment. However, the role of adherence to glasses wearing is unknown. To establish the feasibility and reliability of objectively monitoring adherence to glasses wearing using age-based norms, establish the association between adherence to glasses wearing and improvement in visual acuity (VA) after optical treatment and occlusion therapy, and analyze the effect of age, sex, refractive errors, type of amblyopia, and adherence to glasses wearing on improvement in VA. A prospective, observational, nonmasked, cohort study was conducted between June 8, 2008, and June 30, 2013, among patients at a pediatric ophthalmology clinic of a tertiary care hospital who were newly diagnosed with anisometropic and/or strabismic amblyopia and had not undergone previous treatment. The study consisted of a glasses phase (18 weeks) and a patching phase (glasses and occlusion for 10 hours per day for 12 weeks). Reliability of the glasses monitors was assessed by comparing diary entries and monitor recordings in adults. Objective monitoring of glasses wearing and occlusion. Adherence to glasses wearing (hours per day) and effect on VA. Among 20 children with anisometropia (mean [SD] age, 6.20 [2.16] years; 11 boys and 9 girls) and 20 with strabismic or mixed amblyopia (mean [SD] age, 4.90 [1.36] years; 10 boys and 10 girls), adherence to glasses wearing was successfully monitored in all but 1 patient. Agreement between diaries and monitored times wearing glasses in adults was high (intraclass correlation coefficient, 1.00; 95% CI, 0.999-1.00). Median (SD) adherence to glasses wearing was 70% (25.3%). A moderate correlation was observed between adherence to glasses wearing and percentage improvement in VA during the glasses phase (r = 0.462; P = .003). Multiple regression revealed that age (β = -0.535; P = .001

  15. Visual Tracking Based on an Improved Online Multiple Instance Learning Algorithm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Li Jia; Zhang, Hua

    2016-01-01

    An improved online multiple instance learning (IMIL) for a visual tracking algorithm is proposed. In the IMIL algorithm, the importance of each instance contributing to a bag probability is with respect to their probabilities. A selection strategy based on an inner product is presented to choose weak classifier from a classifier pool, which avoids computing instance probabilities and bag probability M times. Furthermore, a feedback strategy is presented to update weak classifiers. In the feedback update strategy, different weights are assigned to the tracking result and template according to the maximum classifier score. Finally, the presented algorithm is compared with other state-of-the-art algorithms. The experimental results demonstrate that the proposed tracking algorithm runs in real-time and is robust to occlusion and appearance changes.

  16. Improved Visual Hook Capturing and Tracking for Precision Hoisting of Tower Crane

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yanming Li

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available To maintain safe operation of the tower crane, it is important to monitor the activities of the hook system. Visual monitoring and image recognition are the optimum methods for crane hook tracking and precision hoisting. High real-time performance and low computation requirements are required for tower crane hook capturing and tracking system which is implemented on the embedded Advanced RISC Machines (ARM processor or Microcontrol Unit (MCU. Using the lift rope of a tower crane as the target object, a new high-performance hook tracking method suitble for ARM processor or MCU applications is presented. The features of the lifting process are analyzed, and an improved progressive probabilistic Hough transform (IPPHT algorithm is proposed which canreduce capturing time by up to 80%. Combining color histogram with a binary search algorithm, an adaptive zooming method for precise hoisting is presented. Using this method the optimum zoom scale can be achieved within a few iterations.

  17. Transcriptome profiling of Gossypium barbadense inoculated with Verticillium dahliae provides a resource for cotton improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yan; Wang, Xing Fen; Ding, Ze Guo; Ma, Qing; Zhang, Gui Rong; Zhang, Shu Ling; Li, Zhi Kun; Wu, Li Qiang; Zhang, Gui Yin; Ma, Zhi Ying

    2013-09-22

    mock-/inoculated- and resistant/susceptible cotton. Our results suggest that the cotton defense response has significant transcriptional complexity and that large accumulations of defense-related transcripts may contribute to V. dahliae resistance in cotton. Therefore, these data provide a resource for cotton improvement through molecular breeding approaches. This study generated a substantial amount of cotton transcript sequences that are related to defense responses against V. dahliae. These genomics resources and knowledge of important related genes contribute to our understanding of host-pathogen interactions and the defense mechanisms utilized by G. barbadense, a non-model plant system. These tools can be applied in establishing a modern breeding program that uses marker-assisted selections and oligonucleotide arrays to identify candidate genes that can be linked to valuable agronomic traits in cotton, including disease resistance.

  18. Visual Input Enhancement via Essay Coding Results in Deaf Learners' Long-Term Retention of Improved English Grammatical Knowledge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berent, Gerald P.; Kelly, Ronald R.; Schmitz, Kathryn L.; Kenney, Patricia

    2009-01-01

    This study explored the efficacy of visual input enhancement, specifically "essay enhancement", for facilitating deaf college students' improvement in English grammatical knowledge. Results documented students' significant improvement immediately after a 10-week instructional intervention, a replication of recent research. Additionally, the…

  19. Aversive reinforcement improves visual discrimination learning in free-flying honeybees.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aurore Avarguès-Weber

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Learning and perception of visual stimuli by free-flying honeybees has been shown to vary dramatically depending on the way insects are trained. Fine color discrimination is achieved when both a target and a distractor are present during training (differential conditioning, whilst if the same target is learnt in isolation (absolute conditioning, discrimination is coarse and limited to perceptually dissimilar alternatives. Another way to potentially enhance discrimination is to increase the penalty associated with the distractor. Here we studied whether coupling the distractor with a highly concentrated quinine solution improves color discrimination of both similar and dissimilar colors by free-flying honeybees. As we assumed that quinine acts as an aversive stimulus, we analyzed whether aversion, if any, is based on an aversive sensory input at the gustatory level or on a post-ingestional malaise following quinine feeding. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We show that the presence of a highly concentrated quinine solution (60 mM acts as an aversive reinforcer promoting rejection of the target associated with it, and improving discrimination of perceptually similar stimuli but not of dissimilar stimuli. Free-flying bees did not use remote cues to detect the presence of quinine solution; the aversive effect exerted by this substance was mediated via a gustatory input, i.e. via a distasteful sensory experience, rather than via a post-ingestional malaise. CONCLUSION: The present study supports the hypothesis that aversion conditioning is important for understanding how and what animals perceive and learn. By using this form of conditioning coupled with appetitive conditioning in the framework of a differential conditioning procedure, it is possible to uncover discrimination capabilities that may remain otherwise unsuspected. We show, therefore, that visual discrimination is not an absolute phenomenon but can be modulated by experience.

  20. Visualizing stressful aspects of repetitive motion tasks and opportunities for ergonomic improvements using computer vision.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greene, Runyu L; Azari, David P; Hu, Yu Hen; Radwin, Robert G

    2017-11-01

    Patterns of physical stress exposure are often difficult to measure, and the metrics of variation and techniques for identifying them is underdeveloped in the practice of occupational ergonomics. Computer vision has previously been used for evaluating repetitive motion tasks for hand activity level (HAL) utilizing conventional 2D videos. The approach was made practical by relaxing the need for high precision, and by adopting a semi-automatic approach for measuring spatiotemporal characteristics of the repetitive task. In this paper, a new method for visualizing task factors, using this computer vision approach, is demonstrated. After videos are made, the analyst selects a region of interest on the hand to track and the hand location and its associated kinematics are measured for every frame. The visualization method spatially deconstructs and displays the frequency, speed and duty cycle components of tasks that are part of the threshold limit value for hand activity for the purpose of identifying patterns of exposure associated with the specific job factors, as well as for suggesting task improvements. The localized variables are plotted as a heat map superimposed over the video, and displayed in the context of the task being performed. Based on the intensity of the specific variables used to calculate HAL, we can determine which task factors most contribute to HAL, and readily identify those work elements in the task that contribute more to increased risk for an injury. Work simulations and actual industrial examples are described. This method should help practitioners more readily measure and interpret temporal exposure patterns and identify potential task improvements. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  1. Provider Profiling: A Population Health Improvement Tool for the Southeast Military Health System

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Pemberton, Phillip

    1999-01-01

    ...). Profiling with Provider Perspectives, a Primary Care Management Tool, provides the SEMHS with a standardized performance measurement system that offers feedback in a user friendly and non-threatening format...

  2. Robust Stereo Visual Odometry Using Improved RANSAC-Based Methods for Mobile Robot Localization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yanqing; Gu, Yuzhang; Li, Jiamao; Zhang, Xiaolin

    2017-10-13

    In this paper, we present a novel approach for stereo visual odometry with robust motion estimation that is faster and more accurate than standard RANSAC (Random Sample Consensus). Our method makes improvements in RANSAC in three aspects: first, the hypotheses are preferentially generated by sampling the input feature points on the order of ages and similarities of the features; second, the evaluation of hypotheses is performed based on the SPRT (Sequential Probability Ratio Test) that makes bad hypotheses discarded very fast without verifying all the data points; third, we aggregate the three best hypotheses to get the final estimation instead of only selecting the best hypothesis. The first two aspects improve the speed of RANSAC by generating good hypotheses and discarding bad hypotheses in advance, respectively. The last aspect improves the accuracy of motion estimation. Our method was evaluated in the KITTI (Karlsruhe Institute of Technology and Toyota Technological Institute) and the New Tsukuba dataset. Experimental results show that the proposed method achieves better results for both speed and accuracy than RANSAC.

  3. An evaluation of interagency monitoring of protected visual environments (IMPROVE) collocated precision and uncertainty estimates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hyslop, Nicole P.; White, Warren H.

    The Interagency Monitoring of Protected Visual Environments (IMPROVE) program is a cooperative measurement effort in the United States designed to characterize current visibility and aerosol conditions in scenic areas (primarily National Parks and Forests) and to identify chemical species and emission sources responsible for existing man-made visibility impairment. In 2003 and 2004, the IMPROVE network began operating collocated samplers at several sites to evaluate the precision of its aerosol measurements. This paper presents the precisions calculated from the collocated data according to the United States Environmental Protection Agency's guidelines Code of Federal Regulations [CFR, 1997. Revised requirements for designation of reference and equivalent methods for PM 2.5 and ambient air quality surveillance for particulate matter: final rule, 1997. Code of Federal Regulations. Part IV: Environmental Protection Agency, vol. 40 CFR Parts 53 and 58, pp. 71-72. Available from pdf>]. These values range from 4% for sulfate to 115% for the third elemental carbon fraction. Collocated precision tends to improve with increasing detection rates, is typically better when the analysis is performed on the whole filter instead of just a fraction of the filter, and is better for species that are predominantly in the smaller size fractions. The collocated precisions are also used to evaluate the accuracy of the uncertainty estimates that are routinely reported with the concentrations. For most species, the collocated precisions are worse than the precisions predicted by the reported uncertainties. These discrepancies suggest that some sources of uncertainty are not accounted for or have been underestimated.

  4. Providing Elementary Teachers in South Texas with Professional Development to Improve Earth Science Instruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borrego, H.; Ellins, K. K.

    2011-12-01

    Through three years of participation in the TeXas Earth and Space Science (TXESS) Revolution, an NSF-sponsored teacher professional development program, my knowledge of earth science, new pedagogical approaches, and confidence has improved dramatically. I have also received instructional materials and learned how to access high quality online resources and use a variety of web-based tools. In this session, I will share my experiences and report on how I used my own learning to help both teachers and students to become more earth science literate individuals. Earth Science test scores at the elementary level throughout South Texas are consistently low in comparison to other regions in the state. The majority of the teachers lack the content-knowledge, confidence, or experience to teach Earth Sciences. My TXESS Revolution experience helped me to understand the needs of these teachers and to identify teaching resources that would be useful to them. Particularly noteworthy are TERC's EarthLabs: Earth System Science and GLOBE activities. Although these Earthlab investigations are designed for high schools students, I demonstrated how they could be adapted for elementary students. As a result, I have provided professional development in the Earth Sciences to about 300 South Texas elementary teachers. TXESS Revolution has also equipped me to empower the students I teach. My students this past year presented their challenge Legacy Cycle Project to the community. The TXESS Revolution teamed up with the Texas Water Development Board to deliver training on the implementation of a new online challenged-based curriculum called the Water Exploration Legacy Cycles. This training gave me the tools to guide my students learning through authentic scientific research. To carry out their challenge, students researched an area of interest, read literature, consulted with experts in the field, consider different prospective, and presented their final products via PowerPoint, poster

  5. Improved criteria and comparative genomics tool provide new insights into grass paleogenomics

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Salse, Jerome; Abrouk, Michael; Murat, Florent; Quraishi, Umar Masood; Feuillet, Catherine

    2009-01-01

    ... over interpret the results of large scale comparative sequence analyses. Recently, we have established a number of improved parameters and tools to define significant relationships between genomes as a basis to develop paleogenomics studies in grasses...

  6. VISA: AN AUTOMATIC AWARE AND VISUAL AIDS MECHANISM FOR IMPROVING THE CORRECT USE OF GEOSPATIAL DATA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. H. Hong

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available With the fast growth of internet-based sharing mechanism and OpenGIS technology, users nowadays enjoy the luxury to quickly locate and access a variety of geospatial data for the tasks at hands. While this sharing innovation tremendously expand the possibility of application and reduce the development cost, users nevertheless have to deal with all kinds of “differences” implicitly hidden behind the acquired georesources. We argue the next generation of GIS-based environment, regardless internet-based or not, must have built-in knowledge to automatically and correctly assess the fitness of data use and present the analyzed results to users in an intuitive and meaningful way. The VISA approach proposed in this paper refer to four different types of visual aids that can be respectively used for addressing analyzed results, namely, virtual layer, informative window, symbol transformation and augmented TOC. The VISA-enabled interface works in an automatic-aware fashion, where the standardized metadata serve as the known facts about the selected geospatial resources, algorithms for analyzing the differences of temporality and quality of the geospatial resources were designed and the transformation of analyzed results into visual aids were automatically executed. It successfully presents a new way for bridging the communication gaps between systems and users. GIS has been long seen as a powerful integration tool, but its achievements would be highly restricted if it fails to provide a friendly and correct working platform.

  7. Improving the visualization of electron-microscopy data through optical flow interpolation

    KAUST Repository

    Carata, Lucian

    2013-01-01

    Technical developments in neurobiology have reached a point where the acquisition of high resolution images representing individual neurons and synapses becomes possible. For this, the brain tissue samples are sliced using a diamond knife and imaged with electron-microscopy (EM). However, the technique achieves a low resolution in the cutting direction, due to limitations of the mechanical process, making a direct visualization of a dataset difficult. We aim to increase the depth resolution of the volume by adding new image slices interpolated from the existing ones, without requiring modifications to the EM image-capturing method. As classical interpolation methods do not provide satisfactory results on this type of data, the current paper proposes a re-framing of the problem in terms of motion volumes, considering the depth axis as a temporal axis. An optical flow method is adapted to estimate the motion vectors of pixels in the EM images, and this information is used to compute and insert multiple new images at certain depths in the volume. We evaluate the visualization results in comparison with interpolation methods currently used on EM data, transforming the highly anisotropic original dataset into a dataset with a larger depth resolution. The interpolation based on optical flow better reveals neurite structures with realistic undistorted shapes, and helps to easier map neuronal connections. © 2011 ACM.

  8. Visa: AN Automatic Aware and Visual Aids Mechanism for Improving the Correct Use of Geospatial Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hong, J. H.; Su, Y. T.

    2016-06-01

    With the fast growth of internet-based sharing mechanism and OpenGIS technology, users nowadays enjoy the luxury to quickly locate and access a variety of geospatial data for the tasks at hands. While this sharing innovation tremendously expand the possibility of application and reduce the development cost, users nevertheless have to deal with all kinds of "differences" implicitly hidden behind the acquired georesources. We argue the next generation of GIS-based environment, regardless internet-based or not, must have built-in knowledge to automatically and correctly assess the fitness of data use and present the analyzed results to users in an intuitive and meaningful way. The VISA approach proposed in this paper refer to four different types of visual aids that can be respectively used for addressing analyzed results, namely, virtual layer, informative window, symbol transformation and augmented TOC. The VISA-enabled interface works in an automatic-aware fashion, where the standardized metadata serve as the known facts about the selected geospatial resources, algorithms for analyzing the differences of temporality and quality of the geospatial resources were designed and the transformation of analyzed results into visual aids were automatically executed. It successfully presents a new way for bridging the communication gaps between systems and users. GIS has been long seen as a powerful integration tool, but its achievements would be highly restricted if it fails to provide a friendly and correct working platform.

  9. Improvement of fine motor skills in children with visual impairment: an explorative study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Reimer, A.M.; Cox, R.F.; Nijhuis-Van der Sanden, M.W.G.; Boonstra, F.N.

    2011-01-01

    In this study we analysed the potential spin-off of magnifier training on the fine-motor skills of visually impaired children. The fine-motor skills of 4- and 5-year-old visually impaired children were assessed using the manual skills test for children (6-12 years) with a visual impairment (ManuVis)

  10. Improvement of fine motor skills in children with visual impairment: An explorative study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Reimer, A.M.; Cox, R.F.A.; Nijhuis-Van der Sanden, M.W.G.; Boonstra, F.N.

    2011-01-01

    In this study we analysed the potential spin-off of magnifier training on the fine-motor skills of visually impaired children. The fine-motor skills of 4- and 5-year-old visually impaired children were assessed using the manual skills test for children (6-12 years) with a visual impairment (ManuVis)

  11. Improvement of Fine Motor Skills in Children with Visual Impairment: An Explorative Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reimer, A. M.; Cox, R. F. A.; Nijhuis-Van der Sanden, M. W. G.; Boonstra, F. N.

    2011-01-01

    In this study we analysed the potential spin-off of magnifier training on the fine-motor skills of visually impaired children. The fine-motor skills of 4- and 5-year-old visually impaired children were assessed using the manual skills test for children (6-12 years) with a visual impairment (ManuVis) and movement assessment for children (Movement…

  12. Long-Term Impact of Improving Visualization Abilities of Minority Engineering and Technology Students: Preliminary Results

    Science.gov (United States)

    Study, Nancy E.

    2011-01-01

    Previous studies found that students enrolled in introductory engineering graphics courses at a historically black university (HBCU) had significantly lower than average test scores on the Purdue Spatial Visualization Test: Visualization of Rotations (PSVT) when it was administered during the first week of class. Since the ability to visualize is…

  13. Map Learning with a 3D Printed Interactive Small-Scale Model: Improvement of Space and Text Memorization in Visually Impaired Students

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stéphanie Giraud

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Special education teachers for visually impaired students rely on tools such as raised-line maps (RLMs to teach spatial knowledge. These tools do not fully and adequately meet the needs of the teachers because they are long to produce, expensive, and not versatile enough to provide rapid updating of the content. For instance, the same RLM can barely be used during different lessons. In addition, those maps do not provide any interactivity, which reduces students’ autonomy. With the emergence of 3D printing and low-cost microcontrollers, it is now easy to design affordable interactive small-scale models (SSMs which are adapted to the needs of special education teachers. However, no study has previously been conducted to evaluate non-visual learning using interactive SSMs. In collaboration with a specialized teacher, we designed a SSM and a RLM representing the evolution of the geography and history of a fictitious kingdom. The two conditions were compared in a study with 24 visually impaired students regarding the memorization of the spatial layout and historical contents. The study showed that the interactive SSM improved both space and text memorization as compared to the RLM with braille legend. In conclusion, we argue that affordable home-made interactive small scale models can improve learning for visually impaired students. Interestingly, they are adaptable to any teaching situation including students with specific needs.

  14. Map Learning with a 3D Printed Interactive Small-Scale Model: Improvement of Space and Text Memorization in Visually Impaired Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giraud, Stéphanie; Brock, Anke M.; Macé, Marc J.-M.; Jouffrais, Christophe

    2017-01-01

    Special education teachers for visually impaired students rely on tools such as raised-line maps (RLMs) to teach spatial knowledge. These tools do not fully and adequately meet the needs of the teachers because they are long to produce, expensive, and not versatile enough to provide rapid updating of the content. For instance, the same RLM can barely be used during different lessons. In addition, those maps do not provide any interactivity, which reduces students’ autonomy. With the emergence of 3D printing and low-cost microcontrollers, it is now easy to design affordable interactive small-scale models (SSMs) which are adapted to the needs of special education teachers. However, no study has previously been conducted to evaluate non-visual learning using interactive SSMs. In collaboration with a specialized teacher, we designed a SSM and a RLM representing the evolution of the geography and history of a fictitious kingdom. The two conditions were compared in a study with 24 visually impaired students regarding the memorization of the spatial layout and historical contents. The study showed that the interactive SSM improved both space and text memorization as compared to the RLM with braille legend. In conclusion, we argue that affordable home-made interactive small scale models can improve learning for visually impaired students. Interestingly, they are adaptable to any teaching situation including students with specific needs. PMID:28649209

  15. Declarative Visualization Queries

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinheiro da Silva, P.; Del Rio, N.; Leptoukh, G. G.

    2011-12-01

    In an ideal interaction with machines, scientists may prefer to write declarative queries saying "what" they want from a machine than to write code stating "how" the machine is going to address the user request. For example, in relational database, users have long relied on specifying queries using Structured Query Language (SQL), a declarative language to request data results from a database management system. In the context of visualizations, we see that users are still writing code based on complex visualization toolkit APIs. With the goal of improving the scientists' experience of using visualization technology, we have applied this query-answering pattern to a visualization setting, where scientists specify what visualizations they want generated using a declarative SQL-like notation. A knowledge enhanced management system ingests the query and knows the following: (1) know how to translate the query into visualization pipelines; and (2) how to execute the visualization pipelines to generate the requested visualization. We define visualization queries as declarative requests for visualizations specified in an SQL like language. Visualization queries specify what category of visualization to generate (e.g., volumes, contours, surfaces) as well as associated display attributes (e.g., color and opacity), without any regards for implementation, thus allowing scientists to remain partially unaware of a wide range of visualization toolkit (e.g., Generic Mapping Tools and Visualization Toolkit) specific implementation details. Implementation details are only a concern for our knowledge-based visualization management system, which uses both the information specified in the query and knowledge about visualization toolkit functions to construct visualization pipelines. Knowledge about the use of visualization toolkits includes what data formats the toolkit operates on, what formats they output, and what views they can generate. Visualization knowledge, which is not

  16. A Quality Improvement Project to Improve Education Provided by Nurses to ED Patients Prescribed Opioid Analgesics at Discharge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waszak, Daria L; Mitchell, Ann M; Ren, Dianxu; Fennimore, Laura A

    2017-10-27

    The opioid crisis continues to take an unprecedented number of lives and is the top cause of injury death in the United States. The emergency department is a setting where patients with pain seek care and may be prescribed an opioid, yet many patients do not receive evidence-based education about taking their opioid safely. Like many communities across the country, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, has experienced an increased rate of opioid overdoses; from 2015-2016, the number of opioid-related overdose deaths in the county increased by 44%. This quality improvement project is the implementation of a nurse-delivered, evidence-based education initiative for patients prescribed an opioid in an emergency department. Nurses were briefly trained on opioid safety and patient education, then over 12 weeks, delivered the dual-modal (verbal and written) education with a patient teach-back to verify comprehension. Nurses who completed the project training on opioid safety and patient education had a statistically significant improvement in their knowledge. Patient satisfaction surveys showed 100% of patients reported clear understanding of how to take their pain medication, and out of the patients receiving the opioid pain education for the first time, 88.2% learned something new about how to safely take, store, or dispose of their pain medication. Improving the delivery of opioid prescription education at emergency department discharge will enhance patient knowledge and promote safety, which may help mitigate the opioid crisis by reducing the rate of opioid use disorder and accidental overdoses. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Improved visualization of vertebrate nuclear pore complexes by field emission scanning electron microscopy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shaulov, Lihi; Harel, Amnon

    2012-03-07

    Field emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM) can provide high-resolution three-dimensional surface imaging of many biological structures, including nuclear envelopes and nuclear pore complexes (NPCs). For this purpose, it is important to preserve NPCs as close as possible to their native morphology, embedded in undamaged nuclear membranes. We present optimized methodologies for FESEM imaging in a cell-free reconstitution system and for the direct visualization of mammalian cell nuclei. The use of anchored chromatin templates in the cell-free system is particularly advantageous for imaging fragile intermediates inhibited at early stages of assembly. Our new method for exposing the surface of mammalian nuclei results in an unprecedented quality of NPC images, avoiding detergent-induced and physical damage. These new methodologies pave the way for the combined use of FESEM imaging with biochemical and genetic manipulation, in cell-free systems and in mammalian cells. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Improved Prevention Counseling by HIV Care Providers in a Multisite, Clinic-Based Intervention: Positive STEPs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thrun, Mark; Cook, Paul F.; Bradley-Springer, Lucy A.; Gardner, Lytt; Marks, Gary; Wright, Julie; Wilson, Tracey E.; Quinlivan, E. Byrd; O'Daniels, Christine; Raffanti, Stephen; Thompson, Melanie; Golin, Carol

    2009-01-01

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have recommended that HIV care clinics incorporate prevention into clinical practice. This report summarizes HIV care providers' attitudes and counseling practices before and after they received training to deliver a counseling intervention to patients. Providers at seven HIV clinics received training…

  19. Correlation between provider computer experience and accuracy of electronic anesthesia charting A pilot study and performance improvement project

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-03-20

    Anesthesia recordkeeping: Accuracy of recall with computerized and manual entry recordkeeping. CORRELATION BETWEEN PROVIDER COMPUTER EXPERIENCE 39...Unexpected increased mortality after implementation of a CORRELATION BETWEEN PROVIDER COMPUTER EXPERIENCE 40 commercially sold computerized physician...Correlation between provider computer experience and accuracy of electronic anesthesia charting – A pilot study and performance improvement

  20. Corneal Higher-order Aberrations and Visual Improvement Following Corneal Transplantation in Treating Herpes Simplex Keratitis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shimizu, Eisuke; Yamaguchi, Takefumi; Tomida, Daisuke; Yagi-Yaguchi, Yukari; Satake, Yoshiyuki; Tsubota, Kazuo; Shimazaki, Jun

    2017-12-01

    To examine corneal higher-order aberrations (HOAs) and visual improvement following corneal transplantation in treating corneal scar caused by herpes simplex keratitis (HSK). Retrospective consecutive case series. This study included a total of 52 eyes: 18 eyes of normal subjects, and 34 eyes of consecutive patients with corneal scar owing to HSK who underwent penetrating keratoplasty (PKP, 17 eyes) or deep anterior lamellar keratoplasty (DALK, 17 eyes). HOAs of the anterior, posterior surfaces and the total cornea were analyzed by anterior segment optical coherence tomography. The correlations between corneal HOAs and visual improvement were also analyzed. Mean logarithm of the minimal angle of resolution (logMAR) visual acuity significantly improved from 1.40 ± 0.70 to 0.46 ± 0.45 after corneal transplantation (P transplantation (PKP: from 1.16 ± 0.59 μm to 0.58 ± 0.35 μm, P = .035, DALK: from 0.94 ± 0.57 μm to 0.37 ± 0.18 μm, P = .004). Visual acuity following corneal transplantation was correlated with the corneal HOAs at 12 months (r = 0.53, P = .01). Visual improvement at 3, 6, and 12 months was positively correlated with preoperative HOAs of the total cornea and posterior surface (all P transplantation in eyes with HSK. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Mirror visual feedback-induced performance improvement and the influence of hand dominance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Viola eRjosk

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Mirror Visual Feedback (MVF is a promising technique in clinical settings that can be used to augment performance of an untrained limb. Several studies with healthy volunteers and patients using transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS or functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI indicate that functional alterations within primary motor cortex (M1 might be one candidate mechanism that could explain MVF-induced changes in behavior. Until now, most studies have used MVF to improve performance of the non-dominant hand. The question remains if the behavioural effect of MVF differs according to hand dominance. Here, we conducted a study with two groups of young, healthy right-handed volunteers who performed a complex ball-rotation task while receiving MVF of the dominant (n = 16, group 1, MVFDH or non-dominant hand (n = 16, group 2, MVFNDH. We found no significant differences in baseline performance of the untrained hand between groups before MVF was applied. Furthermore, there was no significant difference in the amount of performance improvement between MVFDH and MVFNDH indicating that the outcome of MVF seems not to be influenced by hand dominance. Thus our findings might have important implications in neurorehabilitation suggesting that patients suffering from unilateral motor impairments might benefit from MVF regardless of the dominance of the affected limb.

  2. Improved JPEG anti-forensics with better image visual quality and forensic undetectability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Gurinder; Singh, Kulbir

    2017-08-01

    There is an immediate need to validate the authenticity of digital images due to the availability of powerful image processing tools that can easily manipulate the digital image information without leaving any traces. The digital image forensics most often employs the tampering detectors based on JPEG compression. Therefore, to evaluate the competency of the JPEG forensic detectors, an anti-forensic technique is required. In this paper, two improved JPEG anti-forensic techniques are proposed to remove the blocking artifacts left by the JPEG compression in both spatial and DCT domain. In the proposed framework, the grainy noise left by the perceptual histogram smoothing in DCT domain can be reduced significantly by applying the proposed de-noising operation. Two types of denoising algorithms are proposed, one is based on the constrained minimization problem of total variation of energy and other on the normalized weighted function. Subsequently, an improved TV based deblocking operation is proposed to eliminate the blocking artifacts in the spatial domain. Then, a decalibration operation is applied to bring the processed image statistics back to its standard position. The experimental results show that the proposed anti-forensic approaches outperform the existing state-of-the-art techniques in achieving enhanced tradeoff between image visual quality and forensic undetectability, but with high computational cost. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Improving participation rates by providing choice of participation mode: two randomized controlled trials

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Heijmans, N.; Lieshout, J. van; Wensing, M.J.

    2015-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Low participation rates reduce effective sample size, statistical power and can increase risk for selection bias. Previous research suggests that offering choice of participation mode can improve participation rates. However, few head-to-head trials compared choice of participation mode

  4. VISION: a regional performance improvement initiative for HIV health care providers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruno, Theodore O; Hicks, Charles B; Naggie, Susanna; Wohl, David A; Albrecht, Helmut; Thielman, Nathan M; Rabin, Daniel U; Layton, Sherry; Subramaniam, Chitra; Grichnik, Katherine P; Shlien, Amanda; Weyer, Dianne

    2014-01-01

    VISION (HIV Integrated Learning ModuleS: Achieving Performance Improvement through CollaboratiON) was a regional performance improvement (PI) continuing medical education (CME) initiative designed to increase guideline-conforming practice of clinicians who manage patients with HIV infection. The 3-part activity consisted of (1) clinical practice assessment and development of an action plan for practice change, (2) completion of relevant education, and (3) reassessment. The activity did not change practitioners' performance in clinical status monitoring and in patient treatment, in large part because guidelines were being appropriately implemented at baseline as well as after the educational intervention. There was a trend toward improvement, however, in practitioner performance in the area of patient medication adherence (increased from 66% to 74%). Results observed in the VISION initiative were consistent with HIVQUAL metrics. Ongoing education in HIV is important, and VISION demonstrated performance improvement in medication adherence, a critical aspect of health care. © 2014 The Alliance for Continuing Education in the Health Professions, the Society for Academic Continuing Medical Education, and the Council on Continuing Medical Education, Association for Hospital Medical Education.

  5. Quality of provided care in vascular surgery : outcome assessment & improvement strategies

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Flu, Hans Christiaan

    2010-01-01

    The aim of this thesis was to evaluate the quality of care in vascular surgery in end-stage renal disease (ESRD) and peripheral arterial occlusive disease (PAOD): intermittent claudication (IC) and critical lower limb ischaemia (CLI) patients. Therefore firstly it focused on the improvement of the

  6. Rubisco catalytic properties of wild and domesticated relatives provide scope for improving wheat photosynthesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prins, Anneke; Orr, Douglas J; Andralojc, P John; Reynolds, Matthew P; Carmo-Silva, Elizabete; Parry, Martin A J

    2016-03-01

    Rubisco is a major target for improving crop photosynthesis and yield, yet natural diversity in catalytic properties of this enzyme is poorly understood. Rubisco from 25 genotypes of the Triticeae tribe, including wild relatives of bread wheat (Triticum aestivum), were surveyed to identify superior enzymes for improving photosynthesis in this crop. In vitro Rubisco carboxylation velocity (V c), Michaelis-Menten constants for CO2 (K c) and O2 (K o) and specificity factor (S c/o) were measured at 25 and 35 °C. V c and K c correlated positively, while V c and S c/o were inversely related. Rubisco large subunit genes (rbcL) were sequenced, and predicted corresponding amino acid differences analysed in relation to the corresponding catalytic properties. The effect of replacing native wheat Rubisco with counterparts from closely related species was analysed by modelling the response of photosynthesis to varying CO2 concentrations. The model predicted that two Rubisco enzymes would increase photosynthetic performance at 25 °C while only one of these also increased photosynthesis at 35 °C. Thus, under otherwise identical conditions, catalytic variation in the Rubiscos analysed is predicted to improve photosynthetic rates at physiological CO2 concentrations. Naturally occurring Rubiscos with superior properties amongst the Triticeae tribe can be exploited to improve wheat photosynthesis and crop productivity. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Experimental Biology.

  7. Providing Students with Interdisciplinary Support to Improve Their Organic Chemistry Posters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Widanski, Bozena; Thompson, Jo Ann; Foran-Mulcahy, Katie; Abafo, Amy

    2016-01-01

    A two-semester-long interdisciplinary support effort to improve student posters in organic chemistry lab is described. In the first semester, students' literature search report is supported by a workshop conducted by an Instruction Librarian. During the subsequent semester, a second workshop is presented by the Instruction Librarian, an English…

  8. Improving visual observation skills through the arts to aid radiographic interpretation in veterinary practice: A pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beck, Cathy; Gaunt, Heather; Chiavaroli, Neville

    2017-09-01

    Radiographic interpretation is a perceptual and cognitive skill. Recently core veterinary radiology textbooks have focused on the cognitive (i.e., the clinical aspects of radiographic interpretation) rather than the features of visual observation that improve identification of abnormalities. As a result, the skill of visual observation is underemphasized and thus often underdeveloped by trainees. The study of the arts in medical education has been used to train and improve visual observation and empathy. The use of the arts to improve visual observation skills in Veterinary Science has not been previously described. Objectives of this pilot study were to adapt the existing Visual Arts in Health Education Program for medical and dental students at the University of Melbourne, Australia to third year Doctor of Veterinary Medicine students and evaluate their perceptions regarding the program's effects on visual observation skills and confidence with respect to radiographic interpretation. This adaptation took the form of a single seminar given to third year Doctor of Veterinary Medicine students. Following the seminar, students reported an improved approach to radiographic interpretation and felt they had gained skills which would assist them throughout their career. In the year following the seminar, written reports of the students who attended the seminar were compared with reports from a matched cohort of students who did not attend the seminar. This demonstrated increased identification of abnormalities and greater description of the abnormalities identified. Findings indicated that explicit training in visual observation may be a valuable adjunct to the radiology training of Doctor of Veterinary Medicine students. © 2017 American College of Veterinary Radiology.

  9. Evaluating role of interactive visualization tool in improving students' conceptual understanding of chemical equilibrium

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sampath Kumar, Bharath

    interviews pre and post revealed students' mental model or thought process towards chemical equilibrium. Simulations used in the study were developed using the SCRATCH software platform. In order to test the effect of visualization tool on students' conceptual understanding of chemical equilibrium, an ANCOVA analysis was conducted. Results from a one-factor ANCOVA showed posttest scores were significantly higher for the experimental group (Mpostadj. = 7.27 SDpost = 1.387) relative to the control group (Mpostadj. = 2.67, SDpost = 1.371) after adjusting for pretest scores, F (1,24) = 71.82, MSE = 1.497, p = 0.03, eta 2p = 0.75, d = 3.33. Cohen's d was converted to an attenuated effect size d* using the procedure outlined in Thompson (2006). The adjusted (for pretest scores) group mean difference estimate without measure error correction for the posttest scores and the pretest scores was 4.2 with a Cohen's d = 3.04. An alternate approach reported in Cho and Preacher (2015) was used to determine effect size. The adjusted (for pretest scores) group mean difference estimate with measurement error correction only for the posttest scores (but not with measurement error correction for the pretest scores) was 4.99 with a Cohen's d = 3.61. Finally, the adjusted (for pretest scores) group mean difference estimate with measurement error correction for both pretest and posttest scores was 4.23 with a Cohen's d = 3.07. From a quantitative perspective, these effect size indicate a strong relationship between the experimental intervention provided and students' conceptual understanding of chemical equilibrium concepts. That is, those students who received the experimental intervention had exceptionally higher. KEYWORDS: Chemical Equilibrium, Visualization, Alternate Conceptions, Ontological Shift. Simulations.

  10. Feasibility and Preliminary Efficacy of Visual Cue Training to Improve Adaptability of Walking after Stroke: Multi-Centre, Single-Blind Randomised Control Pilot Trial.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristen L Hollands

    Full Text Available Given the importance of vision in the control of walking and evidence indicating varied practice of walking improves mobility outcomes, this study sought to examine the feasibility and preliminary efficacy of varied walking practice in response to visual cues, for the rehabilitation of walking following stroke.This 3 arm parallel, multi-centre, assessor blind, randomised control trial was conducted within outpatient neurorehabilitation services.Community dwelling stroke survivors with walking speed <0.8m/s, lower limb paresis and no severe visual impairments.Over-ground visual cue training (O-VCT, Treadmill based visual cue training (T-VCT, and Usual care (UC delivered by physiotherapists twice weekly for 8 weeks.Participants were randomised using computer generated random permutated balanced blocks of randomly varying size. Recruitment, retention, adherence, adverse events and mobility and balance were measured before randomisation, post-intervention and at four weeks follow-up.Fifty-six participants participated (18 T-VCT, 19 O-VCT, 19 UC. Thirty-four completed treatment and follow-up assessments. Of the participants that completed, adherence was good with 16 treatments provided over (median of 8.4, 7.5 and 9 weeks for T-VCT, O-VCT and UC respectively. No adverse events were reported. Post-treatment improvements in walking speed, symmetry, balance and functional mobility were seen in all treatment arms.Outpatient based treadmill and over-ground walking adaptability practice using visual cues are feasible and may improve mobility and balance. Future studies should continue a carefully phased approach using identified methods to improve retention.Clinicaltrials.gov NCT01600391.

  11. Development and testing of an audio-visual aid for improving infant oral health through primary caregiver education.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alsada, Lisa H; Sigal, Michael J; Limeback, Hardy; Fiege, James; Kulkarni, Gajanan V

    2005-04-01

    To create and test an audio-visual (AV) aid for providing anticipatory guidance on infant oral health to caregivers. A DVD-video containing evidence-based information about infant oral health care and prevention in accordance with the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry guidelines has been developed (www.utoronto.ca/dentistry/newsresources/kids/). It contains comprehensive anticipatory guidance in the areas of pregnancy, oral development, teething, diet and nutrition, oral hygiene, fluoride use, acquisition of oral bacteria, feeding and oral habits, causes and sequelae of early childhood caries, trauma prevention, early dental visits and regular dental visits. A questionnaire was developed to test the knowledge of expectant and young mothers (n = 11) and early childhood educators (n = 16) before and after viewing the video. A significant lack of knowledge about infant oral health was indicated by the proportion of "I don"t know" (22%) and incorrect (19%) responses to the questionnaire before the viewing. Significant improvement in knowledge (32%; range -3% to 57%; p aid. This AV aid promises to be an effective tool in providing anticipatory guidance regarding infant oral health in high-risk populations. Unlike existing educational materials, this aid provides a comprehensive, self-directed, evidence-based approach to the promotion of infant oral health. Widespread application of this prevention protocol has the potential to result in greater awareness, increased use of dental services and reduced incidence of preventable oral disease in the target populations.

  12. The improving of the heat networks operating process under the conditions of the energy efficiency providing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Blinova Tatiana

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Among the priorities it is important to highlight the modernization and improvement of energy efficiency of housing and communal services, as well as the transition to the principle of using the most efficient technologies used in reproduction (construction, creation of objects of municipal infrastructure and housing modernization. The main hypothesis of this study lies in the fact that in modern conditions the realization of the most important priorities of the state policy in the sphere of housing and communal services, is possible in the conditions of use of the most effective control technologies for the reproduction of thermal networks. It is possible to raise the level of information security Heat Distribution Company, and other market participants by improving business processes through the development of organizational and economic mechanism in the conditions of complex monitoring of heat network operation processes

  13. Completion plug design provides improved operational efficiency and safety while minimizing environmental risks

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dum, Frank [T.D. Williamson, Inc., Tulsa, OK (United States)

    2012-07-01

    Pipeline repair standards have been raised with recent improvements for completion plugs when used with a brand new setting tool, resulting in lower environmental risks, improved operational efficiency and safety. The design changes were originally made to serve in an offshore environment in order to minimize the diver's time in the water and simplify steps by the diver to execute pipeline repair operations in cold, dark conditions. Enhancements in the design include fewer number of fittings, plugs, o-rings and gaskets isolating the pipeline product found inside the pipe. The new design is a step toward meeting strict operational and safety standards demanded in the field of pipeline maintenance and repair. (author)

  14. Applying BI Techniques To Improve Decision Making And Provide Knowledge Based Management

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexandra Maria Ioana FLOREA

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available The paper focuses on BI techniques and especially data mining algorithms that can support and improve the decision making process, with applications within the financial sector. We consider the data mining techniques to be more efficient and thus we applied several techniques, supervised and unsupervised learning algorithms The case study in which these algorithms have been implemented regards the activity of a banking institution, with focus on the management of lending activities.

  15. Valproate administered after traumatic brain injury provides neuroprotection and improves cognitive function in rats.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pramod K Dash

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Traumatic brain injury (TBI initiates a complex series of neurochemical and signaling changes that lead to pathological events including neuronal hyperactivity, excessive glutamate release, inflammation, increased blood-brain barrier (BBB permeability and cerebral edema, altered gene expression, and neuronal dysfunction. It is believed that a drug combination, or a single drug acting on multiple targets, may be an effective strategy to treat TBI. Valproate, a widely used antiepileptic drug, has a number of targets including GABA transaminase, voltage-gated sodium channels, glycogen synthase kinase (GSK-3, and histone deacetylases (HDACs, and therefore may attenuate a number of TBI-associated pathologies. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Using a rodent model of TBI, we tested if post-injury administration of valproate can decrease BBB permeability, reduce neural damage and improve cognitive outcome. Dose-response studies revealed that systemic administration of 400 mg/kg (i.p., but not 15, 30, 60 or 100 mg/kg, increases histone H3 and H4 acetylation, and reduces GSK-3 activity, in the hippocampus. Thirty min post-injury administration of 400 mg/kg valproate improved BBB integrity as indicated by a reduction in Evans Blue dye extravasation. Consistent with its dose response to inhibit GSK-3 and HDACs, valproate at 400 mg/kg, but not 100 mg/kg, reduced TBI-associated hippocampal dendritic damage, lessened cortical contusion volume, and improved motor function and spatial memory. These behavioral improvements were not observed when SAHA (suberoylanilide hydroxamic acid, a selective HDAC inhibitor, was administered. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: Our findings indicate that valproate given soon after TBI can be neuroprotective. As clinically proven interventions that can be used to minimize the damage following TBI are not currently available, the findings from this report support the further testing of valproate as an acute therapeutic strategy.

  16. Non-ablative fractional laser provides long-term improvement of mature burn scars

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Taudorf, Elisabeth H; Danielsen, Patricia L; Paulsen, Ida F

    2015-01-01

    BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Non-ablative fractional laser-treatment is evolving for burn scars. The objective of this study was to evaluate clinical and histological long-term outcome of 1,540 nm fractional Erbium: Glass laser, targeting superficial, and deep components of mature burn scars...... of scar-appearance. CONCLUSIONS: Combined superficial and deep non-ablative fractional laser-treatments induce long-term clinical and histological improvement of mature burn scars....

  17. Microfocused Ultrasound with Visualization and Calcium Hydroxylapatite for Improving Skin Laxity and Cellulite Appearance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabriela Casabona, MD

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Background:. Age-associated skin laxity contributes to worsening of cellulite appearance. This study evaluated the effects of microfocused ultrasound with visualization (MFU-V; Ultherapy in combination with diluted calcium hydroxylapatite (CaHA; Radiesse on cellulite appearance and on neocollagenesis. Methods:. Twenty women (18–55 years old with skin laxity and moderate-to-severe cellulite on the buttocks and thighs were retrospectively enrolled. MFU-V was applied using 4 and 7 MHz transducers (25 lines/transducer/site and immediately followed by subdermal CaHA injection (1 ml/buttock or thigh. Photographs at baseline and 90 days were assessed by 2 independent, blinded evaluators using a 5-item cellulite severity scale. One subject scheduled for thighplasty received treatment with 6 different CaHA dilutions (0.3 ml/5 cm2 followed by MFU-V. Tissue specimens from each dilution site were examined under polarized light microscopy to assess neocollagenesis. Results:. Both evaluators reported statistically significant improvements compared with baseline for each item on the cellulite severity scale (P < 0.001 with a 4.5-point improvement in mean overall score (P < 0.001 after a single MFU-V/CaHA treatment. At 90 days, histologic analysis showed peak neocollagenesis in samples treated with the 1:1 dilution, whether with CaHA alone or in combination with MFU-V. The highest conversion of collagen type III into collagen type I at month 3 occurred in samples injected with 1:1 and 1:0.6 CaHA dilutions without subsequent MFU-V treatment. Both procedures were well tolerated, and subject satisfaction was high. Conclusions:. Combination treatment with MFU-V and diluted CaHA is effective for improving skin laxity and the appearance of cellulite on the buttocks and upper thighs.

  18. Leveraging Partnerships: Families, Schools, and Providers Working Together to Improve Asthma Management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gleason, Melanie; Cicutto, Lisa; Haas-Howard, Christy; Raleigh, Bridget M; Szefler, Stanley J

    2016-10-01

    Asthma is one of the most common illnesses of school-aged children and can lead to both health and educational disparities. Children from low socioeconomic backgrounds and racial/ethnic minorities suffer the greatest impact. They often lack the asthma self-management skills to successfully monitor, navigate, and negotiate appropriate asthma care. School settings are a strategic point of contact for this additional support. School nurses can monitor for signs of asthma worsening, manage symptoms, provide care coordination, and reinforce self-management skills. Likewise, school-based asthma programs have the potential to reduce health and educational disparities, but it is the strong linkage to the asthma care provider that is critical to successful school-based asthma management. Healthcare providers are encouraged to establish partnerships with families through patient-centered care and schools through clear communication and care coordination to ensure asthma is well controlled so the child is in school and ready to learn.

  19. Visual displays that directly interface and provide read-outs of molecular states via molecular graphics processing units.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poje, Julia E; Kastratovic, Tamara; Macdonald, Andrew R; Guillermo, Ana C; Troetti, Steven E; Jabado, Omar J; Fanning, M Leigh; Stefanovic, Darko; Macdonald, Joanne

    2014-08-25

    The monitoring of molecular systems usually requires sophisticated technologies to interpret nanoscale events into electronic-decipherable signals. We demonstrate a new method for obtaining read-outs of molecular states that uses graphics processing units made from molecular circuits. Because they are made from molecules, the units are able to directly interact with molecular systems. We developed deoxyribozyme-based graphics processing units able to monitor nucleic acids and output alphanumerical read-outs via a fluorescent display. Using this design we created a molecular 7-segment display, a molecular calculator able to add and multiply small numbers, and a molecular automaton able to diagnose Ebola and Marburg virus sequences. These molecular graphics processing units provide insight for the construction of autonomous biosensing devices, and are essential components for the development of molecular computing platforms devoid of electronics. © 2014 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  20. Feedback Providing Improvement Strategies and Reflection on Feedback Use: Effects on Students' Writing Motivation, Process, and Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duijnhouwer, Hendrien; Prins, Frans J.; Stokking, Karel M.

    2012-01-01

    This study investigated the effects of feedback providing improvement strategies and a reflection assignment on students' writing motivation, process, and performance. Students in the experimental feedback condition (n = 41) received feedback including improvement strategies, whereas students in the control feedback condition (n = 41) received…

  1. What Parents Want: Does Provider Knowledge of Written Parental Expectations Improve Satisfaction in the Emergency Department?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zoltowski, Kathleen S W; Mistry, Rakesh D; Brousseau, David C; Whitfill, Travis; Aronson, Paul L

    2016-01-01

    Satisfaction is an important measure of care quality. Interventions to improve satisfaction in the pediatric emergency department (ED) are limited, especially for patients with nonurgent conditions. Our objective was to determine if clinician knowledge of written parental expectations improves parental satisfaction for nonurgent ED visits. This randomized controlled trial was conducted in a tertiary-care pediatric ED. Parents of children presenting for nonurgent visits (Emergency Severity Index level 4 or 5) were randomized into 3 groups: 1) the intervention group completed an expectation survey on arrival, which was reviewed by the clinician, 2) the control group completed the expectation survey, which was not reviewed, and 3) the baseline group did not complete an expectation survey. At ED disposition, all groups completed a 3-item satisfaction survey, scored using 5-point Likert scales (1 = very poor, 5 = very good). The primary outcome was rating of "overall care." Secondary outcomes included likelihood of recommending the ED and staff sensitivity to concerns. Proportions were compared by chi-square test. A total of 304 subjects were enrolled. The proportion of parents rating 5 of 5 for overall care did not differ among the baseline, control, and intervention groups (74.8% vs 73.2% vs 69.2%, P = .56). The proportion of parents rating 5 of 5 also did not differ for likelihood of recommending the ED (77.7% vs 72.2% vs 70.2%, P = .45) or staff sensitivity to concerns (78.6% vs 78.4% vs 78.8%, P = .71). For nonurgent pediatric ED visits, clinician knowledge of written parental expectations does not improve parental satisfaction. Copyright © 2016 Academic Pediatric Association. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. IMPROVING STUDENTS’ METHODOLOGICAL AND MATHEMATICAL TRAINING TO PROVIDING CONTINUITY BETWEEN PRESCHOOL AND PRIMARY EDUCATION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tetiana Bondarenko

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available The article deals with the problem of implementing the principle of continuity in the mathematical education of pre-school and primary school children in terms of restarting the primary school that caused the need to update the future teachers’ training. Integration into European and world educational space actualized the problem of creating conditions for development and personal fulfillment, search for effective ways of increasing future teachers’ training quality. The article aims to examine normative support and ways of improving students’ methodological and mathematical training for realization of continuity between pre-school and primary education. At the zeroth educational level the summarized results of learning (competence are to become child's readiness to learn at primary school. At the first level it is the ability to select and search for knowledge and ways of action to solve learning problems; learning and developing through mastery of the common ways of organizing learning activities; awareness of the need to continue their education and develop individual experience knowledge. The use of ICT, including methodological web quests, blended learning in the course of improving future specialists’ methodological and mathematical training to implement continuity between preschool and primary education leads to a sense of success, develops students’ ability to self-education. In authors’ view, a perspective area of future research is the development and selection of new tasks for using methodological web quests in order to improve the future specialists’ methodological and mathematical training to implement continuity between preschool and primary education, insurance in effective conditions of organizational and methodological support of the process.

  3. Experimental evaluation of the resolution improvement provided by a silicon PET probe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brzeziński, K; Oliver, J F; Gillam, J; Rafecas, M; Studen, A; Grkovski, M; Kagan, H; Smith, S; Llosá, G; Lacasta, C; Clinthorne, N H

    2016-09-01

    A high-resolution PET system, which incorporates a silicon detector probe into a conventional PET scanner, has been proposed to obtain increased image quality in a limited region of interest. Detailed simulation studies have previously shown that the additional probe information improves the spatial resolution of the reconstructed image and increases lesion detectability, with no cost to other image quality measures. The current study expands on the previous work by using a laboratory prototype of the silicon PET-probe system to examine the resolution improvement in an experimental setting. Two different versions of the probe prototype were assessed, both consisting of a back-to-back pair of 1-mm thick silicon pad detectors, one arranged in 32 × 16 arrays of 1.4 mm × 1.4 mm pixels and the other in 40 × 26 arrays of 1.0 mm × 1.0 mm pixels. Each detector was read out by a set of VATAGP7 ASICs and a custom-designed data acquisition board which allowed trigger and data interfacing with the PET scanner, itself consisting of BGO block detectors segmented into 8 × 6 arrays of 6 mm × 12 mm × 30 mm crystals. Limited-angle probe data was acquired from a group of Na-22 point-like sources in order to observe the maximum resolution achievable using the probe system. Data from a Derenzo-like resolution phantom was acquired, then scaled to obtain similar statistical quality as that of previous simulation studies. In this case, images were reconstructed using measurements of the PET ring alone and with the inclusion of the probe data. Images of the Na-22 source demonstrated a resolution of 1.5 mm FWHM in the probe data, the PET ring resolution being approximately 6 mm. Profiles taken through the image of the Derenzo-like phantom showed a clear increase in spatial resolution. Improvements in peak-to-valley ratios of 50% and 38%, in the 4.8 mm and 4.0 mm phantom features respectively, were observed, while previously unresolvable 3.2 mm features were brought to light by the

  4. Action video games improve reading abilities and visual-to-auditory attentional shifting in English-speaking children with dyslexia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franceschini, Sandro; Trevisan, Piergiorgio; Ronconi, Luca; Bertoni, Sara; Colmar, Susan; Double, Kit; Facoetti, Andrea; Gori, Simone

    2017-07-19

    Dyslexia is characterized by difficulties in learning to read and there is some evidence that action video games (AVG), without any direct phonological or orthographic stimulation, improve reading efficiency in Italian children with dyslexia. However, the cognitive mechanism underlying this improvement and the extent to which the benefits of AVG training would generalize to deep English orthography, remain two critical questions. During reading acquisition, children have to integrate written letters with speech sounds, rapidly shifting their attention from visual to auditory modality. In our study, we tested reading skills and phonological working memory, visuo-spatial attention, auditory, visual and audio-visual stimuli localization, and cross-sensory attentional shifting in two matched groups of English-speaking children with dyslexia before and after they played AVG or non-action video games. The speed of words recognition and phonological decoding increased after playing AVG, but not non-action video games. Furthermore, focused visuo-spatial attention and visual-to-auditory attentional shifting also improved only after AVG training. This unconventional reading remediation program also increased phonological short-term memory and phoneme blending skills. Our report shows that an enhancement of visuo-spatial attention and phonological working memory, and an acceleration of visual-to-auditory attentional shifting can directly translate into better reading in English-speaking children with dyslexia.

  5. Visual documentation process of historic building refurbishment "Improving energy efficiency by insulating wall cavity"

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Bennadji

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available The North East of Scotland's construction method is similar to most popular building typologies in the UK. This typology can vary in term of external material (Granite, brick or stone but with a secondary, usually timber sub frame with a lining on its interior. Insulation was seldom a consideration when such buildings were completed. Statistics shows that 80% of existing buildings in the UK will need to be upgraded. The lack of knowledge in dealing with old building fabric's manipulation has a negative impact on buildings' integrity. The documentation of such process seems to be an important step that buildings' actors should undertake to communicate a practical knowledge that is still at incubation stage. We wanted for this documentation to be visual, as descriptions might mislead none specialised and specialised in the field due to the innovative approach our method was conducted with. For the Scottish context this research/experiment will concentrate on existing granite wall buildings with plastered lath internal wall. It is unfortunate to see the commonly beautiful interiors of Scottish buildings disappearing, when the internal linings are removed. Skips are filled with old Plaster and Lath and new linings have to be supplied and fitted. Excessive waste is created in this change. This paper is based on a historic building energy improvement case study financed by the European commission and the Scottish Government. The pilot study consists of insulating an 18th century house using an innovative product and method. The project was a response to a call by the CIC start (Construction Innovation Club, aiming to establish a link between SMEs and the Universities. The project saw the day in collaboration with Icynene Canada, KDL Kishorn (see full list in the acknowledgment. This paper describes the process through which the team went through to improve the building envelope without damaging the buildings original features (Loveday et all. The

  6. Long-Term Electrophysiological and Behavioral Analysis on the Improvement of Visual Working Memory Load, Training Gains, and Transfer Benefits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuo, Ching-Chang; Zhang, Cheng; Rissman, Robert A; Chiu, Alan W L

    2014-05-01

    Recent evidence demonstrates that with training, one can enhance visual working memory (VWM) capacity and attention over time in the near transfer tasks. Not only do these studies reveal the characteristics of VWM load and the influences of training, they may also provide insights into developing effective rehabilitation for patients with VWM deficiencies. However, few studies have investigated VWM over extended periods of time and evaluated transfer benefits on non-trained tasks. Here, we combined behavioral and electroencephalographical approaches to investigate VWM load, training gains, and transfer benefits. Our results reveal that VWM capacity is directly correlated to the difference of event-related potential waveforms. In particular, the "magic number 4" can be observed through the contralateral delay amplitude and the average capacity is 3.25-item over 15 participants. Furthermore, our findings indicate that VWM capacity can be improved through training; and after training exercises, participants from the training group are able to dramatically improve their performance. Likewise, the training effects on non-trained tasks can also be observed at the 12th week after training. Therefore, we conclude that participants can benefit from training gains, and augmented VWM capacity sustained over long periods of time on specific variety of tasks.

  7. Interdepartmental Occupational Standards for Social Service Providers and Their Role in Improving Job Performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zabrodin Yu.M.,

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available The paper presents an analysis of the occupational standards development abroad and in Russia. It focuses on interdepartmental occupational standards for social service providers. While creating occupational standards for social services as an integrated industry it is advisable to consider the design of whole system and its macro-level effects in a document called “sectoral qualification framework”. It is pointed out that 1 real professional activity in social sphere has a clear humanitarian focus, and its objects are radically different population groups; 2 the complexity of the social work is often associated with the interaction between various professionals and their activity have to be interdepartmentally organized. The author identifies the factors influencing development and implementation of professional standards in different countries and consider the main strategy directions of development and application of occupational standards of education and social service providers in Russia.

  8. Redesigning geriatric healthcare: how cross-functional teams and process improvement provide a competitive advantage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrews, B C; Kaye, J; Bowcutt, M; Campbell, J

    2001-01-01

    This study examines the consequences of adding a geriatric subacute unit to the traditional health care mix offered by a nonprofit hospital. Historically, geriatric health care offerings have been limited to either acute care units or long-term care facilities. The study's findings demonstrate that the addition of a subacute unit that is operated by an interdisciplinary team is a competitively rational move for two reasons. First, it provides a continuum of care that integrates services and departments, thereby reducing costs. Second, it provides a supportive environment for patients and their families. As a consequence patients have a higher probability of returning home than patients who are assigned to more traditional modes of care.

  9. A critical assessment of visual identification of marine microplastic using Raman spectroscopy for analysis improvement

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lenz, Robin; Enders, Kristina; Stedmon, Colin

    2015-01-01

    Identification and characterisation of microplastic (MP) is a necessary step to evaluate their concentrations, chemical composition and interactions with biota. MP ≥10 μm diameter filtered from below the sea surface in the European and subtropical North Atlantic were simultaneously identified...... by visual microscopy and Raman micro-spectroscopy. Visually identified particles below 100 μm had a significantly lower percentage confirmed by Raman than larger ones indicating that visual identification alone is inappropriate for studies on small microplastics. Sixty-eight percent of visually counted MP...

  10. Improving Deployment-Related Primary Care Provider Assessments of PTSD and Mental Health Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-10-01

    medicine--a review with quality grading of articles. Medical Teacher , 21(6), 563-570. Back, A. L., Arnold, R. M., Baile, W. F., Fryer-Edwards, K. A...domain of expertise), intermediates (individuals with skills at an intermediate-stage between expert and novice such as intern or resident health care...providers), and novices (individuals with limited experience and content knowledge). Interestingly, research has demonstrated that intermediates

  11. The Pitfalls of Visual Representations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sabrina Bresciani

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available A large body of research has addressed the benefits of visualization, whereas the analysis of the pitfalls has not received systematic attention. We aim to provide an overview of the common pitfalls and potential disadvantages of visual representations based on a multidisciplinary literature review. Subsequently, we develop a theoretically grounded classification of common cognitive, emotional, and social risks of visualization and populate it with a comprehensive list of visualization pitfalls. The aim of this research is not to diminish the potential of visualization, but rather to improve visual literacy by structuring our understanding of the possible limitations of graphic representations.

  12. The cost-effectiveness of using financial incentives to improve provider quality: a framework and application

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Meacock, R.; Kristensen, Søren Rud; Sutton, M.

    2014-01-01

    , and whether performance improvement is a transitory or investment activity. Our application to the Advancing Quality initiative demonstrates that the incentive payments represented less than half of the 13m pound total programme costs. By generating approximately 5200 quality-adjusted life years and 4.4m......Despite growing adoption of pay-for-performance (P4P) programmes in health care, there is remarkably little evidence on the cost-effectiveness of such schemes. We review the limited number of previous studies and critique the frameworks adopted and the narrow range of costs and outcomes considered......, before proposing a new more comprehensive framework, which we apply to the first P4P scheme introduced for hospitals in England. We emphasise that evaluations of cost-effectiveness need to consider who the residual claimant is on any cost savings, the possibility of positive and negative spillovers...

  13. Pearl millet genome sequence provides a resource to improve agronomic traits in arid environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varshney, Rajeev K; Shi, Chengcheng; Thudi, Mahendar; Mariac, Cedric; Wallace, Jason; Qi, Peng; Zhang, He; Zhao, Yusheng; Wang, Xiyin; Rathore, Abhishek; Srivastava, Rakesh K; Chitikineni, Annapurna; Fan, Guangyi; Bajaj, Prasad; Punnuri, Somashekhar; Gupta, S K; Wang, Hao; Jiang, Yong; Couderc, Marie; Katta, Mohan A V S K; Paudel, Dev R; Mungra, K D; Chen, Wenbin; Harris-Shultz, Karen R; Garg, Vanika; Desai, Neetin; Doddamani, Dadakhalandar; Kane, Ndjido Ardo; Conner, Joann A; Ghatak, Arindam; Chaturvedi, Palak; Subramaniam, Sabarinath; Yadav, Om Parkash; Berthouly-Salazar, Cécile; Hamidou, Falalou; Wang, Jianping; Liang, Xinming; Clotault, Jérémy; Upadhyaya, Hari D; Cubry, Philippe; Rhoné, Bénédicte; Gueye, Mame Codou; Sunkar, Ramanjulu; Dupuy, Christian; Sparvoli, Francesca; Cheng, Shifeng; Mahala, R S; Singh, Bharat; Yadav, Rattan S; Lyons, Eric; Datta, Swapan K; Hash, C Tom; Devos, Katrien M; Buckler, Edward; Bennetzen, Jeffrey L; Paterson, Andrew H; Ozias-Akins, Peggy; Grando, Stefania; Wang, Jun; Mohapatra, Trilochan; Weckwerth, Wolfram; Reif, Jochen C; Liu, Xin; Vigouroux, Yves; Xu, Xun

    2017-10-01

    Pearl millet [Cenchrus americanus (L.) Morrone] is a staple food for more than 90 million farmers in arid and semi-arid regions of sub-Saharan Africa, India and South Asia. We report the ∼1.79 Gb draft whole genome sequence of reference genotype Tift 23D2B1-P1-P5, which contains an estimated 38,579 genes. We highlight the substantial enrichment for wax biosynthesis genes, which may contribute to heat and drought tolerance in this crop. We resequenced and analyzed 994 pearl millet lines, enabling insights into population structure, genetic diversity and domestication. We use these resequencing data to establish marker trait associations for genomic selection, to define heterotic pools, and to predict hybrid performance. We believe that these resources should empower researchers and breeders to improve this important staple crop.

  14. Designing and piloting a program to provide water filters and improved cookstoves in Rwanda.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christina K Barstow

    Full Text Available In environmental health interventions addressing water and indoor air quality, multiple determinants contribute to adoption. These may include technology selection, technology distribution and education methods, community engagement with behavior change, and duration and magnitude of implementer engagement. In Rwanda, while the country has the fastest annual reduction in child mortality in the world, the population is still exposed to a disease burden associated with environmental health challenges. Rwanda relies both on direct donor funding and coordination of programs managed by international non-profits and health sector businesses working on these challenges.This paper describes the design, implementation and outcomes of a pilot program in 1,943 households across 15 villages in the western province of Rwanda to distribute and monitor the use of household water filters and improved cookstoves. Three key program design criteria include a. an investment in behavior change messaging and monitoring through community health workers, b. free distributions to encourage community-wide engagement, and c. a private-public partnership incentivized by a business model designed to encourage "pay for performance". Over a 5-month period of rigorous monitoring, reported uptake was maintained at greater than 90% for both technologies, although exclusive use of the stove was reported in only 28.5% of households and reported water volume was 1.27 liters per person per day. On-going qualitative monitoring suggest maintenance of comparable adoption rates through at least 16 months after the intervention.High uptake and sustained adoption of a water filter and improved cookstove was measured over a five-month period with indications of continued comparable adoption 16 months after the intervention. The design attributes applied by the implementers may be sufficient in a longer term. In particular, sustained and comprehensive engagement by the program implementer

  15. Improving continence services for older people from the service-providers' perspective: a qualitative interview study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orrell, Alison; McKee, Kevin; Dahlberg, Lena; Gilhooly, Mary; Parker, Stuart

    2013-07-30

    To examine in depth the views and experiences of continence service leads in England on key service and continence management characteristics in order to identify and to improve our understanding of barriers to a good-quality service and potential facilitators to develop and to improve services for older people with urinary incontinence (UI). Qualitative semistructured interviews using a purposive sample recruited across 16 continence services. 3 acute and 13 primary care National Health Service Trusts in England. 16 continence service leads in England actively treating and managing older people with UI. In terms of barriers to a good-quality service, participants highlighted a failure on the part of commissioners, managers and other health professionals in recognising the problem of UI and in acknowledging the importance of continence for older people and prevalent negative attitudes towards continence and older people. Patient assessment and continence promotion regardless of age, rather than pad provision, were identified as important steps for a good-quality service for older people with UI. More rapid and appropriate patient referral pathways, investment in service capacity, for example, more trained staff and strengthened interservice collaborations and a higher profile within medical and nurse training were specified as being important facilitators for delivering an equitable and high-quality continence service. There is a need, however, to consider the accounts given by our participants as perhaps serving the interests of their professional group within the context of interprofessional work. Our data point to important barriers and facilitators of a good-quality service for older people with UI, from the perspective of continence service leads. Further research should address the views of other stakeholders, and explore options for the empirical evaluation of the effectiveness of identified service facilitators.

  16. Improvement in visualization of carotid artery uniformity using silent magnetic resonance angiography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fujiwara, Yasuhiro; Muranaka, Yoshiyuki

    2017-03-01

    Three-dimensional time-of-flight magnetic resonance angiography (TOF MRA) has been widely used in clinics. TOF MRA can cause dephasing artifacts, which lead to an intraluminal signal decrease. Silent MRA is a novel imaging technique that uses arterial spin labeling to achieve an ultrashort echo time (uTE), which is expected to decrease these effects and allow for accurate assessment of the flow in blood vessels. This study quantified the accuracy of Silent MRA images for visualizing the turbulent flow in flow-phantom and in vivo studies. The vessel contrast and coefficients of variation (CVs) for Silent MRA and TOF MRA were compared using normal and stenosis phantoms. Then, we performed both types of MRA on seven healthy volunteers. In the phantom study, although the contrast in the TOF MRA images was low distal to the stenosis region and at a high flow velocity, the contrast in the Silent MRA images did not change under these conditions. Furthermore, the mean CV for Silent MRA was smaller than that for TOF MRA under stenosis conditions. In the in vivo study, the mean contrast and vessel uniformity were significantly higher for Silent MRA than for TOF MRA. Although Silent MRA has limited spatial resolution and requires additional imaging time, this method may have the potential to improve the image quality of the carotid artery.

  17. Microfocused Ultrasound with Visualization and Calcium Hydroxylapatite for Improving Skin Laxity and Cellulite Appearance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casabona, Gabriela; Pereira, Gregório

    2017-07-01

    Age-associated skin laxity contributes to worsening of cellulite appearance. This study evaluated the effects of microfocused ultrasound with visualization (MFU-V; Ultherapy) in combination with diluted calcium hydroxylapatite (CaHA; Radiesse) on cellulite appearance and on neocollagenesis. Twenty women (18-55 years old) with skin laxity and moderate-to-severe cellulite on the buttocks and thighs were retrospectively enrolled. MFU-V was applied using 4 and 7 MHz transducers (25 lines/transducer/site) and immediately followed by subdermal CaHA injection (1 ml/buttock or thigh). Photographs at baseline and 90 days were assessed by 2 independent, blinded evaluators using a 5-item cellulite severity scale. One subject scheduled for thighplasty received treatment with 6 different CaHA dilutions (0.3 ml/5 cm 2 ) followed by MFU-V. Tissue specimens from each dilution site were examined under polarized light microscopy to assess neocollagenesis. Both evaluators reported statistically significant improvements compared with baseline for each item on the cellulite severity scale ( P cellulite on the buttocks and upper thighs.

  18. Primary healthcare providers' views on improving sexual and reproductive healthcare for adolescents in Bolivia, Ecuador, and Nicaragua

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jaruseviciene, L.; Orozco, M.; Ibarra, M.

    2013-01-01

    Objectives: To elicit the views of primary healthcare providers from Bolivia, Ecuador, and Nicaragua on how adolescent sexual and reproductive health (ASRH) care in their communities can be improved. Methods: Overall, 126 healthcare providers (46 from Bolivia, 39 from Ecuador, and 41 from Nicarag...

  19. Quality and use of consumer information provided with home test kits: room for improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grispen, Janaica E J; Ickenroth, Martine H P; de Vries, Nanne K; van der Weijden, Trudy; Ronda, Gaby

    2014-10-01

    Diagnostic self-tests (tests on body materials that are initiated by consumers with the aim of diagnosing a disorder or risk factor) are becoming increasingly available. Although the pros and cons of self-testing are currently not clear, it is an existing phenomenon that is likely to gain further popularity. To examine consumers' use of and needs for information about self-testing, and to assess the quality of consumer information provided with home test kits, as perceived by consumers and as assessed using a checklist of quality criteria. A cross-sectional Internet survey among 305 self-testers assessed their use of and needs for information and their perception of the quality of consumer information provided with self-test kits. A meta-search engine was used to identify Dutch and English consumer information for home diagnostic tests available online at the time of the study. The quality of this consumer information was evaluated using a checklist of quality criteria. The consumers' information needs were in line with the most frequently used information, and the information was perceived as being of moderate to good quality. The information was mostly in agreement with clinical practice guidelines, although information on reliability and follow-up behaviour was limited. Approximately half of the instruction leaflets did not include information on the target group of the test. Although generally of moderate to good quality, some aspects of the information provided were in many cases insufficient. European legislation concerning self-tests and accompanying information needs to be adapted and adhered to more closely. © 2012 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  20. Training providers on issues of race and racism improve health care equity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, Stephen C; Prasad, Shailendra; Hackman, Heather W

    2015-05-01

    Race is an independent factor in health disparity. We developed a training module to address race, racism, and health care. A group of 19 physicians participated in our training module. Anonymous survey results before and after the training were compared using a two-sample t-test. The awareness of racism and its impact on care increased in all participants. White participants showed a decrease in self-efficacy in caring for patients of color when compared to white patients. This training was successful in deconstructing white providers' previously held beliefs about race and racism. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  1. Improved Neural Signal Classification in a Rapid Serial Visual Presentation Task Using Active Learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marathe, Amar R; Lawhern, Vernon J; Wu, Dongrui; Slayback, David; Lance, Brent J

    2016-03-01

    The application space for brain-computer interface (BCI) technologies is rapidly expanding with improvements in technology. However, most real-time BCIs require extensive individualized calibration prior to use, and systems often have to be recalibrated to account for changes in the neural signals due to a variety of factors including changes in human state, the surrounding environment, and task conditions. Novel approaches to reduce calibration time or effort will dramatically improve the usability of BCI systems. Active Learning (AL) is an iterative semi-supervised learning technique for learning in situations in which data may be abundant, but labels for the data are difficult or expensive to obtain. In this paper, we apply AL to a simulated BCI system for target identification using data from a rapid serial visual presentation (RSVP) paradigm to minimize the amount of training samples needed to initially calibrate a neural classifier. Our results show AL can produce similar overall classification accuracy with significantly less labeled data (in some cases less than 20%) when compared to alternative calibration approaches. In fact, AL classification performance matches performance of 10-fold cross-validation (CV) in over 70% of subjects when training with less than 50% of the data. To our knowledge, this is the first work to demonstrate the use of AL for offline electroencephalography (EEG) calibration in a simulated BCI paradigm. While AL itself is not often amenable for use in real-time systems, this work opens the door to alternative AL-like systems that are more amenable for BCI applications and thus enables future efforts for developing highly adaptive BCI systems.

  2. Improvement on the visualization of cytoskeletal structures of protozoan parasites using high-resolution field emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sant'Anna, Celso; Campanati, Loraine; Gadelha, Catarina; Lourenço, Daniela; Labati-Terra, Letícia; Bittencourt-Silvestre, Joana; Benchimol, Marlene; Cunha-e-Silva, Narcisa Leal; De Souza, Wanderley

    2005-07-01

    The association of high resolution field emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM), with a more efficient system of secondary electron (SE) collection and in-lens specimen position, provided a great improvement in the specimen's topographical contrast and in the generation of high-resolution images. In addition, images obtained with the use of the high-resolution backscattered electrons (BSE) detector provided a powerful tool for immunocytochemical analysis of biological material. In this work, we show the contribution of the FESEM to the detailed description of cytoskeletal structures of the protozoan parasites Herpetomonas megaseliae, Trypanosoma brucei and Giardia lamblia. High-resolution images of detergent extracted H. megaseliae and T. brucei showed the profile of the cortical microtubules, also known as sub-pellicular microtubules (SPMT), and protein bridges cross-linking them. Also, it was possible to visualize fine details of the filaments that form the lattice-like structure of the paraflagellar rod (PFR) and its connection with the axoneme. In G. lamblia, it was possible to observe the intricate structure of the adhesive disk, funis (a microtubular array) and other cytoskeletal structures poorly described previously. Since most of the stable cytoskeletal structures of this protozoan rely on tubulin, we used the BSE images to accurately map immunolabeled tubulin in its cytoskeleton. Our results suggest that the observation of detergent extracted parasites using FESEM associated to backscattered analysis of immunolabeled specimens represents a new approach for the study of parasite cytoskeletal elements and their protein associations.

  3. Cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection and pregnancy-potential for improvements in Australasian maternity health providers' knowledge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shand, A W; Luk, W; Nassar, N; Hui, L; Dyer, K; Rawlinson, W

    2017-07-11

    To assess the knowledge, practice and attitudes of maternity clinicians regarding congenital cytomegalovirus (CMV). It is the most common congenital infection, and well-recognized cause of neurodevelopmental disability and hearing loss. New consensus recommendations state all pregnant women and health-care providers should be educated about congenital CMV infection and preventive measures. An email questionnaire was distributed in October 2015 to specialists, diplomates (general practitioners), and trainees of the Royal Australian New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RANZCOG), and Victorian and New South Wales midwives. 774 responded: (37.3% specialists, 17.3% diplomates, 16.8% trainees, 28.6% midwives). Clinicians had variable knowledge of fetal sequelae, transmission routes and prevention. Overall, 30.2% felt confident about discussing CMV in pregnancy: less than 10% of midwives (7.4%) and less than half of specialists (47.1%, p maternity clinicians lack confidence and knowledge about congenital CMV. Few (<10%) routinely provide advice on prevention. There is urgent need for clinical guidance and patient information to reduce the burden of disease.

  4. A feasibility study of a web-based performance improvement system for substance abuse treatment providers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forman, Robert; Crits-Christoph, Paul; Kaynak, Ovgü; Worley, Matt; Hantula, Donald A; Kulaga, Agatha; Rotrosen, John; Chu, Melissa; Gallop, Robert; Potter, Jennifer; Muchowski, Patrice; Brower, Kirk; Strobbe, Stephen; Magruder, Kathy; Chellis, A'Delle H; Clodfelter, Tad; Cawley, Margaret

    2007-12-01

    We report here on the feasibility of implementing a semiautomated performance improvement system-Patient Feedback (PF)-that enables real-time monitoring of patient ratings of therapeutic alliance, treatment satisfaction, and drug/alcohol use in outpatient substance abuse treatment clinics. The study was conducted in six clinics within the National Institute on Drug Abuse Clinical Trials Network. It involved a total of 39 clinicians and 6 clinic supervisors. Throughout the course of the study (consisting of five phases: training period [4 weeks], baseline [4 weeks], intervention [12 weeks], postintervention assessment [4 weeks], sustainability [1 year]), there was an overall collection rate of 75.5% of the clinic patient census. In general, the clinicians in these clinics had very positive treatment satisfaction and alliance ratings throughout the study. However, one clinic had worse drug use scores at baseline than other participating clinics and showed a decrease in self-reported drug use at postintervention. Although the implementation of the PF system proved to be feasible in actual clinical settings, further modifications of the PF system are needed to enhance any potential clinical usefulness.

  5. Improving Physics Teaching Materials on Sound for Visually Impaired Students in High School

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toenders, Frank G. C.; de Putter-Smits, Lesley G. A.; Sanders, Wendy T. M.; den Brok, Perry

    2017-01-01

    When visually impaired students attend regular high school, additional materials are necessary to help them understand physics concepts. The time for teachers to develop teaching materials for such students is scarce. Visually impaired students in regular high school physics classes often use a braille version of the physics textbook. Previously,…

  6. Can Dynamic Visualizations Improve Middle School Students' Understanding of Energy in Photosynthesis?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ryoo, Kihyun; Linn, Marcia C.

    2012-01-01

    Dynamic visualizations have the potential to make abstract scientific phenomena more accessible and visible to students, but they can also be confusing and difficult to comprehend. This research investigates how dynamic visualizations, compared to static illustrations, can support middle school students in developing an integrated understanding of…

  7. Vitamin Variation in Capsicum Spp. Provides Opportunities to Improve Nutritional Value of Human Diets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kantar, Michael B; Anderson, Justin E; Lucht, Sarah A; Mercer, Kristin; Bernau, Vivian; Case, Kyle A; Le, Nina C; Frederiksen, Matthew K; DeKeyser, Haley C; Wong, Zen-Zi; Hastings, Jennifer C; Baumler, David J

    2016-01-01

    Chile peppers, native to the Americas, have spread around the world and have been integrated into the diets of many cultures. Much like their heat content, nutritional content can vary dramatically between different pepper types. In this study, a diverse set of chile pepper types were examined for nutrient content. Some pepper types were found to have high levels of vitamin A, vitamin C, or folate. Correlations between nutrient content, species, cultivation status, or geographic region were limited. Varietal selection or plant breeding offer tools to augment nutrient content in peppers. Integration of nutrient rich pepper types into diets that already include peppers could help combat nutrient deficiencies by providing a significant portion of recommended daily nutrients.

  8. Vitamin Variation in Capsicum Spp. Provides Opportunities to Improve Nutritional Value of Human Diets.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael B Kantar

    Full Text Available Chile peppers, native to the Americas, have spread around the world and have been integrated into the diets of many cultures. Much like their heat content, nutritional content can vary dramatically between different pepper types. In this study, a diverse set of chile pepper types were examined for nutrient content. Some pepper types were found to have high levels of vitamin A, vitamin C, or folate. Correlations between nutrient content, species, cultivation status, or geographic region were limited. Varietal selection or plant breeding offer tools to augment nutrient content in peppers. Integration of nutrient rich pepper types into diets that already include peppers could help combat nutrient deficiencies by providing a significant portion of recommended daily nutrients.

  9. Travelling abroad for aesthetic surgery: Informing healthcare practitioners and providers while improving patient safety.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeevan, R; Birch, J; Armstrong, A P

    2011-02-01

    Travelling abroad for surgery is a phenomenon reported internationally. It is particularly likely for aesthetic procedures not undertaken routinely by national health services. We assessed the impact of these patients presenting to the UK National Health Service (NHS) with concerns or complications on their return. All 326 UK consultant members of the British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons (BAPRAS) were asked to complete a short questionnaire about patients that had presented to the NHS with complications or concerns following surgery abroad. The results were subsequently presented to the Department of Health (DH). 203 (62%) UK consultant plastic surgeons responded. 76 (37%) of the 203 respondents had seen such patients in their NHS practice, most commonly following breast or abdominal procedures. A quarter underwent emergency surgery, a third out-patient treatment and a third elective surgical revision. In response to these findings, the DH clarified that NHS teams should provide emergency care to such patients but should not undertake any elective revision procedures. Travelling abroad for aesthetic surgery may reduce its cost. However, aesthetic procedures have high minor complication rates, and peri-operative travel is associated with increased risks. Fully informed consent is unlikely when patients do not meet their surgeon prior to paying and travelling for surgery, and national health services are used to provide a free safety net on their return. To help minimise the potential risks, BAPRAS has clarified the responsibilities of the NHS and is acting to better inform UK patients considering travelling abroad. Copyright © 2010 British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Nutritional Supplement of Hatchery Eggshell Membrane Improves Poultry Performance and Provides Resistance against Endotoxin Stress.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S K Makkar

    Full Text Available Eggshells are significant part of hatchery waste which consist of calcium carbonate crust, membranes, and proteins and peptides of embryonic origins along with other entrapped contaminants including microbes. We hypothesized that using this product as a nutritional additive in poultry diet may confer better immunity to the chickens in the paradigm of mammalian milk that enhances immunity. Therefore, we investigated the effect of hatchery eggshell membranes (HESM as a short term feed supplement on growth performance and immunity of chickens under bacterial lipopolysaccharide (LPS challenged condition. Three studies were conducted to find the effect of HESM supplement on post hatch chickens. In the first study, the chickens were fed either a control diet or diets containing 0.5% whey protein or HESM as supplement and evaluated at 5 weeks of age using growth, hematology, clinical chemistry, plasma immunoglobulins, and corticosterone as variables. The second and third studies were done to compare the effects of LPS on control and HESM fed birds at 5 weeks of age following at 4 and 24 h of treatment where the HESM was also sterilized with ethanol to deplete bacterial factors. HESM supplement caused weight gain in 2 experiments and decreased blood corticosterone concentrations. While LPS caused a significant loss in body weight at 24 h following its administration, the HESM supplemented birds showed significantly less body weight loss compared with the control fed birds. The WBC, heterophil/lymphocyte ratio, and the levels of IgG were low in chickens fed diets with HESM supplement compared with control diet group. LPS challenge increased the expression of pro-inflammatory cytokine gene IL-6 but the HESM fed birds showed its effect curtailed, also, which also, favored the up-regulation of anti-inflammatory genes compared with control diet fed chickens. Post hatch supplementation of HESM appears to improve performance, modulate immunity, and increase

  11. Nutritional Supplement of Hatchery Eggshell Membrane Improves Poultry Performance and Provides Resistance against Endotoxin Stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Makkar, S K; Rath, N C; Packialakshmi, B; Zhou, Z Y; Huff, G R; Donoghue, A M

    2016-01-01

    Eggshells are significant part of hatchery waste which consist of calcium carbonate crust, membranes, and proteins and peptides of embryonic origins along with other entrapped contaminants including microbes. We hypothesized that using this product as a nutritional additive in poultry diet may confer better immunity to the chickens in the paradigm of mammalian milk that enhances immunity. Therefore, we investigated the effect of hatchery eggshell membranes (HESM) as a short term feed supplement on growth performance and immunity of chickens under bacterial lipopolysaccharide (LPS) challenged condition. Three studies were conducted to find the effect of HESM supplement on post hatch chickens. In the first study, the chickens were fed either a control diet or diets containing 0.5% whey protein or HESM as supplement and evaluated at 5 weeks of age using growth, hematology, clinical chemistry, plasma immunoglobulins, and corticosterone as variables. The second and third studies were done to compare the effects of LPS on control and HESM fed birds at 5 weeks of age following at 4 and 24 h of treatment where the HESM was also sterilized with ethanol to deplete bacterial factors. HESM supplement caused weight gain in 2 experiments and decreased blood corticosterone concentrations. While LPS caused a significant loss in body weight at 24 h following its administration, the HESM supplemented birds showed significantly less body weight loss compared with the control fed birds. The WBC, heterophil/lymphocyte ratio, and the levels of IgG were low in chickens fed diets with HESM supplement compared with control diet group. LPS challenge increased the expression of pro-inflammatory cytokine gene IL-6 but the HESM fed birds showed its effect curtailed, also, which also, favored the up-regulation of anti-inflammatory genes compared with control diet fed chickens. Post hatch supplementation of HESM appears to improve performance, modulate immunity, and increase resistance of

  12. Improving The Affordable Care Act: An Assessment Of Policy Options For Providing Subsidies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saltzman, Evan A; Eibner, Christine; Enthoven, Alain C

    2015-12-01

    A key challenge of health reform efforts is to make health insurance affordable for individuals and families who lack coverage without harming those with coverage or increasing federal spending. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) addresses this challenge in part by providing tax subsidies to qualified individuals for purchasing individual insurance and retaining tax exemptions for employer and employee contributions to the cost of premiums of employer-sponsored insurance. These tax exemptions cost approximately $250 billion annually in lost tax revenue and have been criticized for favoring higher earners and conferring preferential treatment of employer-sponsored over individual insurance. We analyzed three options for leveling the financial playing field between the two insurance markets by reallocating the value of tax benefits of employer coverage. We found that one option that uses the subsidy formula employed in the insurance Marketplaces under the ACA for both the individual and employer-sponsored insurance markets, and additionally requires the subsidy to be at least $1,250 without an upper income limit on subsidy eligibility imposed, could expand insurance coverage and reduce individual market premiums relative to the ACA with no additional federal spending. Project HOPE—The People-to-People Health Foundation, Inc.

  13. Health and social care needs of Somali refugees with visual impairment (VIP) living in the United Kingdom: a focused ethnography with Somali people with VIP, their caregivers, service providers, and members of the Horn of Africa Blind Society.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Higginbottom, Gina M A; Rivers, Kaltum; Story, Robin

    2014-04-01

    To explore the health and social care needs of Somali refugees with visual impairment (VIP). We conducted a three-phased focused ethnography in collaboration with the Horn of Africa Blind Society (HABS) through all stages from research design to findings dissemination. Engaging in participatory research, HABS members (n = 26), service providers (n = 10), and two Somali community groups (n = 8 and n = 7) whose members were sighted (Phase 1) took part in four focus group interviews. Phases 2 and 3 consisted of interviews with Somali refugees with VIP (n = 32) and their informal carers (n = 5). We used framework data analysis methodology. Four major themes emerged: (1) sociocultural perceptions of blindness and visual impairment, (2) access to services, (3) isolation and insecurity, and (4) mobility. Somali people with VIP experience profound unmet social and health care needs related largely to social support, awareness of mobility options, and the stigmatization of visual impairment. Appropriate community outreach may improve access to services and quality of life for Somali people with VIP. Tailored information is needed to increase awareness of mobility and security services. Significant considerations exist when planning discharge from acute care settings to ensure continuity of support.

  14. Improved power-law estimates from multiple samples provided by millennium climate simulations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henriksson, S. V.; Räisänen, P.; Silen, J.; Järvinen, H.; Laaksonen, A.

    2015-02-01

    Using the long annual mean temperature time series provided by millennium Earth System Model simulations and a method of discrete Fourier transform with varying starting point and length of time window together with averaging, we get good fits to power laws between two characteristic oscillatory timescales of the model climate: multidecadal (50-80 years) and El Nino (3-6 years) timescales. For global mean temperature, we fit β ˜ 0.35 in a relation S( f) ˜ f - β in a simulation without external climate forcing and β over 0.7 in a simulation with external forcing included. The power law is found both with and without external forcing despite the forcings, e.g. the volcanic forcing, not showing similar behaviour, indicating a nonlinear temperature response to time-varying forcing. We also fit a power law with β ˜ 8 to the narrow frequency range between El Nino frequencies (up to 1/(3.2 years)) and the Nyquist frequency (1/(2 years)). Also, monthly mean temperature time series are considered and a decent power-law fit for frequencies above 1/year is obtained. Regional variability in best-fit β is explored, and the impact of choosing the frequency range on the result is illustrated. When all resolved frequencies are used, land areas seem to have lower βs than ocean areas on average, but when fits are restricted to frequencies below 1/(6 years), this difference disappears, while regional differences still remain. Results compare well with measurements both for global mean temperature and for the central England temperature record.

  15. Functional source separation improves the quality of single trial visual evoked potentials recorded during concurrent EEG-fMRI.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Porcaro, Camillo; Ostwald, Dirk; Bagshaw, Andrew P

    2010-03-01

    EEG quality is a crucial issue when acquiring combined EEG-fMRI data, particularly when the focus is on using single trial (ST) variability to integrate the data sets. The most common method for improving EEG data quality following removal of gross MRI artefacts is independent component analysis (ICA), a completely blind source separation technique. In the current study, a different approach is proposed based on the functional source separation (FSS) algorithm. FSS is an extension of ICA that incorporates prior knowledge about the signal of interest into the data decomposition. Since in general the part of the EEG signal that will contain the most relevant information is known beforehand (i.e. evoked potential peaks, spectral bands), FSS separates the signal of interest by exploiting this prior knowledge without renouncing the advantages of using only information contained in the original signal waveforms. A reversing checkerboard stimulus was used to generate visual evoked potentials (VEPs) in healthy control subjects. Gradient and ballistocardiogram artefacts were removed with template subtraction techniques to form the raw data, which were then subjected to ICA denoising and FSS. The resulting EEG data sets were compared using several metrics derived from average and ST data and correlated with fMRI data. In all cases, ICA was an improvement on the raw data, but the most obvious improvement was provided by FSS, which consistently outperformed ICA. The results show the benefit of FSS for the recovery of good quality single trial evoked potentials during concurrent EEG-fMRI recordings. Copyright (c) 2009 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Evaluation of composite materials providing improved acoustic transmission loss for UAVs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Callicoat, Jeffrey R.

    With the proliferation of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) in civilian airspace in the near future, community noise will be a major issue of concern. Numerous studies have shown a direct link between community noise pollution (i.e., road traffic noise and airport noise) and serious health problems. There exists, therefore, a pressing need to create quiet UAVs, and this drives the need for noise-attenuating materials and structures suitable for UAV airframe fabrication. By shrouding predominant noise sources such as the engine, exhaust, and even the propeller (in the case of a ducted fan) with the airframe structure, the airframe can serve as a noise transmission barrier and substantially reduce UAV noise profiles. The present research effort is an experimental investigation of light-weight fiber-reinforced composite materials to provide high acoustic transmission loss (TL) for use in fabricating UAV airframes. A transmission loss tube acoustic test system was designed, fabricated, and validated, and extensive testing was done on numerous composite layups of interest for UAV fabrication. Composites under study included carbon fiber, fiberglass, and Kevlar fabrics as skin materials along with vinyl foam, Nomex honeycomb, and balsawood as core materials. Results from testing small 3"x3" samples in the TL tube led to the selection of four composite sandwich panels of interest for further study. Larger 36"x36" test samples of these selected layups were then fabricated and tested using a 2-room methodology. Whereas the TL tube yielded results in the stiffness-controlled region of acoustic behavior, the 2-room tests produced results in the mass-controlled region for these materials, enabling relative performance comparisons over both acoustic regimes. Recognizing that a good material for airframe fabrication should possess not only high TL, but also low weight and high stiffness, load-deflection tests were conducted and overall material performance was compared in terms of

  17. No age deficits in the ability to use attention to improve visual working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Souza, Alessandra S

    2016-08-01

    Maintenance of information in mind to the moment-to-moment cognition is accomplished by working memory (WM). WM capacity is reduced in old age, but the nature of this decline is yet not clear. The current study examined the hypothesis that the decline in visual WM performance with age is related to a reduced ability to use attention to control the contents of WM. Young (M = 26 years) and old (M = 71 years) adults performed a color reproduction task in which the precise color of a set of dots had to be maintained in mind over a brief interval and later reproduced using a continuous color wheel. Attention was manipulated by presenting a spatial cue before the onset of the memory array (a precue) or during the maintenance phase (retro-cue). The cue indicated with 100% certainty the item to be tested at the end of the trial. A precue allows the selective encoding of only the relevant item to WM, whereas a retro-cue allows WM contents to be updated by refreshing the relevant (cued) item and removing nonrelevant (noncued) items. Aging was associated with a lower capacity in the baseline (no-cue) condition. Precues and (to a smaller extent) retro-cues improved WM performance (in terms of probability of recall and memory precision). Critically, the benefits of cueing were of similar magnitude in young and older adults showing that the ability to use attention to selectively encode and update the contents of WM is preserved with aging. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).

  18. Hydrologic-Process-Based Soil Texture Classifications for Improved Visualization of Landscape Function.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Derek G Groenendyk

    Full Text Available Soils lie at the interface between the atmosphere and the subsurface and are a key component that control ecosystem services, food production, and many other processes at the Earth's surface. There is a long-established convention for identifying and mapping soils by texture. These readily available, georeferenced soil maps and databases are used widely in environmental sciences. Here, we show that these traditional soil classifications can be inappropriate, contributing to bias and uncertainty in applications from slope stability to water resource management. We suggest a new approach to soil classification, with a detailed example from the science of hydrology. Hydrologic simulations based on common meteorological conditions were performed using HYDRUS-1D, spanning textures identified by the United States Department of Agriculture soil texture triangle. We consider these common conditions to be: drainage from saturation, infiltration onto a drained soil, and combined infiltration and drainage events. Using a k-means clustering algorithm, we created soil classifications based on the modeled hydrologic responses of these soils. The hydrologic-process-based classifications were compared to those based on soil texture and a single hydraulic property, Ks. Differences in classifications based on hydrologic response versus soil texture demonstrate that traditional soil texture classification is a poor predictor of hydrologic response. We then developed a QGIS plugin to construct soil maps combining a classification with georeferenced soil data from the Natural Resource Conservation Service. The spatial patterns of hydrologic response were more immediately informative, much simpler, and less ambiguous, for use in applications ranging from trafficability to irrigation management to flood control. The ease with which hydrologic-process-based classifications can be made, along with the improved quantitative predictions of soil responses and visualization

  19. Hydrologic-Process-Based Soil Texture Classifications for Improved Visualization of Landscape Function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Groenendyk, Derek G; Ferré, Ty P A; Thorp, Kelly R; Rice, Amy K

    2015-01-01

    Soils lie at the interface between the atmosphere and the subsurface and are a key component that control ecosystem services, food production, and many other processes at the Earth's surface. There is a long-established convention for identifying and mapping soils by texture. These readily available, georeferenced soil maps and databases are used widely in environmental sciences. Here, we show that these traditional soil classifications can be inappropriate, contributing to bias and uncertainty in applications from slope stability to water resource management. We suggest a new approach to soil classification, with a detailed example from the science of hydrology. Hydrologic simulations based on common meteorological conditions were performed using HYDRUS-1D, spanning textures identified by the United States Department of Agriculture soil texture triangle. We consider these common conditions to be: drainage from saturation, infiltration onto a drained soil, and combined infiltration and drainage events. Using a k-means clustering algorithm, we created soil classifications based on the modeled hydrologic responses of these soils. The hydrologic-process-based classifications were compared to those based on soil texture and a single hydraulic property, Ks. Differences in classifications based on hydrologic response versus soil texture demonstrate that traditional soil texture classification is a poor predictor of hydrologic response. We then developed a QGIS plugin to construct soil maps combining a classification with georeferenced soil data from the Natural Resource Conservation Service. The spatial patterns of hydrologic response were more immediately informative, much simpler, and less ambiguous, for use in applications ranging from trafficability to irrigation management to flood control. The ease with which hydrologic-process-based classifications can be made, along with the improved quantitative predictions of soil responses and visualization of landscape

  20. Development of a Web-based educational intervention to improve cross-cultural communication among hospice providers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doorenbos, Ardith Z; Lindhorst, Taryn; Schim, Stephanie Myers; Van Schaik, Eileen; Demiris, George; Wechkin, Hope A; Curtis, J Randall

    2010-01-01

    In this article, the authors describe the theoretical foundation, development, and content of a Web-based educational intervention to improve cross-cultural communication about end-of-life concerns and report on the preliminary evaluation of this intervention using a qualitative study design. The data were collected with non-structured questions in a convenience sample of 21 hospice providers. Participants reported that they found the training appropriate and useful. Participants also reported finding the online delivery convenient and the interactive format valuable. Improving the quality of cross-cultural patient-provider communication can contribute to reducing disparities at end-of-life.

  1. Improving visual spatial working memory in younger and older adults: effects of cross-modal cues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curtis, Ashley F; Turner, Gary R; Park, Norman W; Murtha, Susan J E

    2017-11-06

    Spatially informative auditory and vibrotactile (cross-modal) cues can facilitate attention but little is known about how similar cues influence visual spatial working memory (WM) across the adult lifespan. We investigated the effects of cues (spatially informative or alerting pre-cues vs. no cues), cue modality (auditory vs. vibrotactile vs. visual), memory array size (four vs. six items), and maintenance delay (900 vs. 1800 ms) on visual spatial location WM recognition accuracy in younger adults (YA) and older adults (OA). We observed a significant interaction between spatially informative pre-cue type, array size, and delay. OA and YA benefitted equally from spatially informative pre-cues, suggesting that attentional orienting prior to WM encoding, regardless of cue modality, is preserved with age.  Contrary to predictions, alerting pre-cues generally impaired performance in both age groups, suggesting that maintaining a vigilant state of arousal by facilitating the alerting attention system does not help visual spatial location WM.

  2. Nerve growth factor eye drops improve visual acuity and electrofunctional activity in age-related macular degeneration: a case report

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessandro Lambiase

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Age-related macular degeneration (ARMD is a severe disease affecting visual function in the elderly. Currently available surgical and medical options do not guarantee a significant impact on the outcome of the disease. We describe the effects of nerve growth factor eye drop treatment in a 94 years old female with ARMD, whose visual acuity was progressively worsening in spite of previous surgical and medical treatments. NGF eye drops improved visual acuity and electrofunctional parameters as early as 3 months after initiation of treatment. These results are in line with previous reports on a neuroprotective effect of NGF on retinal cells and on NGF eye drops bioavailability in the retina and optic nerve. No side effects were observed after five years of follow-up, suggesting that topical NGF treatment may be a safe and effective therapy for ARMD.

  3. Innovations in basic life support education for healthcare providers: improving competence in cardiopulmonary resuscitation through self-directed learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cason, Carolyn L; Kardong-Edgren, Suzan; Cazzell, Mary; Behan, Deborah; Mancini, Mary Elizabeth

    2009-01-01

    Providing cardiopulmonary resuscitation is an essential competency for nurses. Nurse educators involved in staff development and continuing education spend numerous hours offering basic life support courses and conducting performance improvement activities such as mock codes. This study provides evidence that cardiopulmonary resuscitation performance skills using self-directed learning methods are as good as or, on a number of parameters, better than those achieved with a more resource- and time-intensive traditional approach.

  4. Visual Function and Higher-Order Aberrations in Eyes After Corneal Transplantation: How to Improve Postoperative Quality of Vision.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamaguchi, Takefumi; Satake, Yoshiyuki; Dogru, Murat; Ohnuma, Kazuhiko; Negishi, Kazuno; Shimazaki, Jun

    2015-11-01

    An understanding of corneal optics is important to optimize the visual outcome after eye surgery. Recent advances in the surgical techniques of lamellar keratoplasty have changed the strategies used for corneal transplantation. Lamellar keratoplasty has the advantage of having a lower rate of graft rejection, superior biomechanical properties, and reduced higher-order aberrations (HOAs) compared with penetrating keratoplasty; thus, the use of lamellar keratoplasty has increased over the last 15 years. However, some patients have poor postoperative visual acuity despite a clear cornea, and the reasons for the poor visual outcome are poorly understood. By combining corneal imaging technologies and the latest optical software, we proposed the concept of "parallelism of anterior and posterior surfaces in lamellar keratoplasty." In physiologically normal eyes, in which the anterior and posterior surfaces are parallel to each other, the posterior surface of the cornea compensates the HOAs of the anterior surface, and this is also true in eyes after penetrating keratoplasty. However, after lamellar keratoplasty, in which the anterior and posterior surfaces are independent and not parallel, irregularities in the posterior surface increase the HOAs of the anterior surface. This article introduces this concept to enhance our understanding of visual optics in eyes after penetrating and lamellar keratoplasties and how to apply this concept to surgery to improve and optimize patient visual outcomes.

  5. Distributed data discovery, access and visualization services to Improve Data Interoperability across different data holdings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palanisamy, G.; Krassovski, M.; Devarakonda, R.; Santhana Vannan, S.

    2012-12-01

    The current climate debate is highlighting the importance of free, open, and authoritative sources of high quality climate data that are available for peer review and for collaborative purposes. It is increasingly important to allow various organizations around the world to share climate data in an open manner, and to enable them to perform dynamic processing of climate data. This advanced access to data can be enabled via Web-based services, using common "community agreed" standards without having to change their internal structure used to describe the data. The modern scientific community has become diverse and increasingly complex in nature. To meet the demands of such diverse user community, the modern data supplier has to provide data and other related information through searchable, data and process oriented tool. This can be accomplished by setting up on-line, Web-based system with a relational database as a back end. The following common features of the web data access/search systems will be outlined in the proposed presentation: - A flexible data discovery - Data in commonly used format (e.g., CSV, NetCDF) - Preparing metadata in standard formats (FGDC, ISO19115, EML, DIF etc.) - Data subseting capabilities and ability to narrow down to individual data elements - Standards based data access protocols and mechanisms (SOAP, REST, OpenDAP, OGC etc.) - Integration of services across different data systems (discovery to access, visualizations and subseting) This presentation will also include specific examples of integration of various data systems that are developed by Oak Ridge National Laboratory's - Climate Change Science Institute, their ability to communicate between each other to enable better data interoperability and data integration. References: [1] Devarakonda, Ranjeet, and Harold Shanafield. "Drupal: Collaborative framework for science research." Collaboration Technologies and Systems (CTS), 2011 International Conference on. IEEE, 2011. [2

  6. Visualization Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — FUNCTION: Evaluates and improves the operational effectiveness of existing and emerging electronic warfare systems. By analyzing and visualizing simulation results...

  7. Implementation of client versus care-provider strategies to improve external cephalic version rates: a cluster randomized controlled trial

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vlemmix, F.; Rosman, A.N.; Rijnders, M.E.; Beuckens, A.; Opmeer, B.C.; Mol, B.W.J.; Kok, M.; Fleuren, M.A.H.

    2015-01-01

    Onjective: To determine the effectiveness of a client or care-provider strategy to improve the implementation of external cephalic version. Design: Cluster randomized controlled trial.Setting: Twenty-five clusters; hospitals and their referring midwifery practices randomly selected in the

  8. Optimizing the reconstruction filter in cone-beam CT to improve periodontal ligament space visualization: An in vitro study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Houno, Yuuki; Kodera, Yoshie [Graduate School of Medicine, Nagoya University, Nagoya (Japan); Hishikawa, Toshimitsu; Naitoh, Munetaka; Mitani, Akio; Noguchi, Toshihide; Ariji, Eiichiro [Aichi Gakuin University, Nisshin (Japan); Gotoh, Kenichi [Div. of Radiology, Dental Hospital, Aichi Gakuin University, Nisshin (Japan)

    2017-09-15

    Evaluation of alveolar bone is important in the diagnosis of dental diseases. The periodontal ligament space is difficult to clearly depict in cone-beam computed tomography images because the reconstruction filter conditions during image processing cause image blurring, resulting in decreased spatial resolution. We examined different reconstruction filters to assess their ability to improve spatial resolution and allow for a clearer visualization of the periodontal ligament space. Cone-beam computed tomography projections of 2 skull phantoms were reconstructed using 6 reconstruction conditions and then compared using the Thurstone paired comparison method. Physical evaluations, including the modulation transfer function and the Wiener spectrum, as well as an assessment of space visibility, were undertaken using experimental phantoms. Image reconstruction using a modified Shepp-Logan filter resulted in better sensory, physical, and quantitative evaluations. The reconstruction conditions substantially improved the spatial resolution and visualization of the periodontal ligament space. The difference in sensitivity was obtained by altering the reconstruction filter. Modifying the characteristics of a reconstruction filter can generate significant improvement in assessments of the periodontal ligament space. A high-frequency enhancement filter improves the visualization of thin structures and will be useful when accurate assessment of the periodontal ligament space is necessary.

  9. Use of NeuroEyeCoach™ to Improve Eye Movement Efficacy in Patients with Homonymous Visual Field Loss

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arash Sahraie

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Visual field deficits are common in patients with damaged retinogeniculostriate pathways. The patient’s eye movements are often affected leading to inefficient visual search. Systematic eye movement training also called compensatory therapy is needed to allow patients to develop effective coping strategies. There is a lack of evidence-based, clinical gold-standard registered medical device accessible to patients at home or in clinical settings and NeuroEyeCoach (NEC is developed to address this need. In three experiments, we report on performance of patients on NEC compared to the data obtained previously on the earlier versions of the search task (n=32; we assessed whether the self-administered computerised tasks can be used to monitor the progress (n=24 and compared the findings in a subgroup of patients to a healthy control group. Performance on cancellation tasks, simple visual search, and self-reported responses on activities of daily living was compared, before and after training. Patients performed similarly well on NEC as on previous versions of the therapy; the inbuilt functionality for pre- and postevaluation functions was sensitive to allowing assessment of improvements; and improvements in patients were significantly greater than those in a group of healthy adults. In conclusion, NeuroEyeCoach can be used as an effective rehabilitation tool to develop compensatory strategies in patients with visual field deficits after brain injury.

  10. Improving visual memory, attention, and school function with atomoxetine in boys with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shang, Chi-Yung; Gau, Susan Shur-Fen

    2012-10-01

    Atomoxetine is efficacious in reducing symptoms of attention- deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), but its effect on visual memory and attention needs more investigation. This study aimed to assess the effect of atomoxetine on visual memory, attention, and school function in boys with ADHD in Taiwan. This was an open-label 12 week atomoxetine treatment trial among 30 drug-naíve boys with ADHD, aged 8-16 years. Before administration of atomoxetine, the participants were assessed using psychiatric interviews, the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children, 3rd edition (WISC-III), the school function of the Chinese version of the Social Adjustment Inventory for Children and Adolescents (SAICA), the Conners' Continuous Performance Test (CPT), and the tasks of the Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery (CANTAB) involving visual memory and attention: Pattern Recognition Memory, Spatial Recognition Memory, and Reaction Time, which were reassessed at weeks 4 and 12. Our results showed there was significant improvement in pattern recognition memory and spatial recognition memory as measured by the CANTAB tasks, sustained attention and response inhibition as measured by the CPT, and reaction time as measured by the CANTAB after treatment with atomoxetine for 4 weeks or 12 weeks. In addition, atomoxetine significantly enhanced school functioning in children with ADHD. Our findings suggested that atomoxetine was associated with significant improvement in visual memory, attention, and school functioning in boys with ADHD.

  11. Effects of computer-aided clinical decision support systems in improving antibiotic prescribing by primary care providers: a systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holstiege, Jakob; Mathes, Tim; Pieper, Dawid

    2015-01-01

    To assess the effectiveness of computer-aided clinical decision support systems (CDSS) in improving antibiotic prescribing in primary care. A literature search utilizing Medline (via PubMed) and Embase (via Embase) was conducted up to November 2013. Randomized controlled trials (RCTs) and cluster randomized trials (CRTs) that evaluated the effects of CDSS aiming at improving antibiotic prescribing practice in an ambulatory primary care setting were included for review. Two investigators independently extracted data about study design and quality, participant characteristics, interventions, and outcomes. Seven studies (4 CRTs, 3 RCTs) met our inclusion criteria. All studies were performed in the USA. Proportions of eligible patient visits that triggered CDSS use varied substantially between intervention arms of studies (range 2.8-62.8%). Five out of seven trials showed marginal to moderate statistically significant effects of CDSS in improving antibiotic prescribing behavior. CDSS that automatically provided decision support were more likely to improve prescribing practice in contrast to systems that had to be actively initiated by healthcare providers. CDSS show promising effectiveness in improving antibiotic prescribing behavior in primary care. Magnitude of effects compared to no intervention, appeared to be similar to other moderately effective single interventions directed at primary care providers. Additional research is warranted to determine CDSS characteristics crucial to triggering high adoption by providers as a perquisite of clinically relevant improvement of antibiotic prescribing. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the American Medical Informatics Association. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.comFor numbered affiliations see end of article.

  12. A Simple, Visually Oriented Communication System to Improve Postoperative Care Following Microvascular Free Tissue Transfer: Development, Results, and Implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henderson, Peter W; Landford, Wilmina; Gardenier, Jason; Otterburn, David M; Rohde, Christine H; Spector, Jason A

    2016-07-01

    Background Communication, particularly transmission of information between the surgical and nursing teams, has been identified as one of the most crucial determinants of patient outcomes. Nonetheless, transfer of information among and between the physician and nursing teams in the immediate postoperative period is often informal, verbal, and inconsistent. Methods An iterative process of multidisciplinary information gathering was undertaken to create a novel postoperative communication system (the "Pop-form"). Once developed, nurses were surveyed on multiple measures regarding the perceived likelihood that it would improve their ability to provide directed patient care. Data were quantified using a Likert scale (0-10), and statistically analyzed. Results The Pop-form records and transfers operative details, specific anatomic monitoring parameters, and senior physician contact information. Sixty-eight nurses completed surveys. The perceived usefulness of different components of the Pop-form system was as follows: 8.9 for the description of the procedure; 9.3 for the operative diagram; 9.4 for the monitoring details and parameters; and 9.4 for the direct contact information for the appropriate surgical team member. All respondents were in favor of widespread adoption of the Pop-form. Conclusion This uniform, visual communication system requires less than 1 minute to compose, yet formalizes and standardizes inter-team communication, and therefore shows promise for improving outcomes following microvascular free tissue transfer. We believe that this simple, innovative communication tool has the potential to be more broadly applied to many other health care settings. Thieme Medical Publishers 333 Seventh Avenue, New York, NY 10001, USA.

  13. Narrative review of provider behavior in primary care behavioral health: How process data can inform quality improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beehler, Gregory P; Lilienthal, Kaitlin R; Possemato, Kyle; Johnson, Emily M; King, Paul R; Shepardson, Robyn L; Vair, Christina L; Reyner, Jacqueline; Funderburk, Jennifer S; Maisto, Stephen A; Wray, Laura O

    2017-09-01

    Primary care behavioral health (PCBH) is a population-based approach to delivering mental and behavioral health care in the primary care setting. Implementation of the PCBH model varies across practice settings, which can impact how PCBH providers deliver services to patients and in turn may predict a variety of important outcomes. This article aims to characterize PCBH provider engagement in key processes of integrated care as demonstrated in results from empirical studies of real-world clinical practice. For this narrative review of published studies on PCBH provider engagement in processes of care, PubMed and PsycINFO databases were searched from January 1990 through May 2016 to identify relevant articles. Provider adherence to the brief, time-limited treatment model appears suboptimal. Common mental health conditions, such as depression, were often the primary focus of provider attention, with less consistent emphasis on behavioral medicine concerns. Whereas providers regularly conducted qualitative functional assessments with patients, routine use of standardized measures was low. Engagement in interprofessional collaboration with the primary care team was also low, but engagement in behaviors that fostered therapeutic relationships was high. This review identified several strengths and weaknesses of typical PCBH provider practices. Results are discussed in relation to their value as areas for future quality improvement initiatives that can improve PCBH service delivery and, ultimately, patient outcomes. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).

  14. The association between refractive cutoffs for spectacle provision and visual improvement among school-aged children in South Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Congdon, Nathan G; Patel, Nita; Esteso, Paul; Chikwembani, Florence; Webber, Fiona; Msithini, Robert Bongi; Ratcliffe, Amy

    2008-01-01

    To evaluate different refractive cutoffs for spectacle provision with regards to their impact on visual improvement and spectacle compliance. Prospective study of visual improvement and spectacle compliance. South African school children aged 6-19 years receiving free spectacles in a programme supported by Helen Keller International. Refractive error, age, gender, urban versus rural residence, presenting and best-corrected vision were recorded for participants. Spectacle wear was observed directly at an unannounced follow-up examination 4-11 months after initial provision of spectacles. The association between five proposed refractive cutoff protocols and visual improvement and spectacle compliance were examined in separate multivariate models. Refractive cutoffs for spectacle distribution which would effectively identify children with improved vision, and those more likely to comply with spectacle wear. Among 8520 children screened, 810 (9.5%) received spectacles, of whom 636 (79%) were aged 10-14 years, 530 (65%) were girls, 324 (40%) had vision improvement > or = 3 lines, and 483 (60%) were examined 6.4+/-1.5 (range 4.6 to 10.9) months after spectacle dispensing. Among examined children, 149 (31%) were wearing or carrying their glasses. Children meeting cutoffs or = +1.00 D of hyperopia and > or = +0.75 D of astigmatism had significantly greater improvement in vision than children failing to meet these criteria, when adjusting for age, gender and urban versus rural residence. None of the proposed refractive protocols discriminated between children wearing and not wearing spectacles. Presenting vision and improvement in vision were unassociated with subsequent spectacle wear, but girls (p spectacle retention and either refractive error or vision may have been due to the relatively modest degree of refractive error in this African population.

  15. Dissemination Approaches to Participating Primary Care Providers in a Quality Improvement Program Addressing Opioid Use in Central Appalachia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cardarelli, Roberto; Workman, Charlotte Sue; Weatherford, Sarah; Whanger, Stacey; King, Dana E

    2017-06-01

    Practice-based research networks (PBRNs) have been described as new clinical laboratories for primary care research and dissemination. PBRNs, however, have struggled to disseminate research results in a meaningful way to participating providers and clinics. The Central Appalachia Inter-Professional Pain Education Collaborative was developed to work with PBRN clinics using quality improvement methods, deliver statewide continuing education activities to address the issue of opioid use in patients with chronic pain, and develop a multimodal mechanism to disseminate project results to clinics and participating providers. Successful change in the delivery of chronic pain care was dependent on the clinic's commitment to a team-based, patient-centered approach. Statistically significant improvements were shown in 10 of 16 process measures, and 80% of the participants agreed that the quality improvement process activity increased their knowledge and would improve their performance in managing patients with chronic pain, as well as patient outcomes in their practice. The Central Appalachia Inter-Professional Pain Education Collaborative project used an extensive and innovative dissemination plan under the rubric of "continual dissemination." Unlike traditional dissemination efforts that focus on summary presentations, this initiative used a continual dissemination approach that updated participants quarterly through multiple means throughout the project, which improved engagement in the project.

  16. Editorial: Advances in healthcare provider and patient training to improve the quality and safety of patient care

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth M. Borycki

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available This special issue of the Knowledge Management & E-Learning: An International Journal is dedicated to describing “Advances in Healthcare Provider and Patient Training to Improve the Quality and Safety of Patient Care.” Patient safety is an important and fundamental requirement of ensuring the quality of patient care. Training and education has been identified as a key to improving healthcare provider patient safety competencies especially when working with new technologies such as electronic health records and mobile health applications. Such technologies can be harnessed to improve patient safety; however, if not used properly they can negatively impact on patient safety. In this issue we focus on advances in training that can improve patient safety and the optimal use of new technologies in healthcare. For example, use of clinical simulations and online computer based training can be employed both to facilitate learning about new clinical discoveries as well as to integrate technology into day to day healthcare practices. In this issue we are publishing papers that describe advances in healthcare provider and patient training to improve patient safety as it relates to the use of educational technologies, health information technology and on-line health resources. In addition, in the special issue we describe new approaches to training and patient safety including, online communities, clinical simulations, on-the-job training, computer based training and health information systems that educate about and support safer patient care in real-time (i.e. when health professionals are providing care to patients. These educational and technological initiatives can be aimed at health professionals (i.e. students and those who are currently working in the field. The outcomes of this work are significant as they lead to safer care for patients and their family members. The issue has both theoretical and applied papers that describe advances in patient

  17. Longevity of visual improvements following transcorneal electrical stimulation and efficacy of retreatment in three individuals with retinitis pigmentosa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bittner, Ava K; Seger, Kenneth

    2018-02-01

    A small-scale randomized controlled trial conducted by our group found that four of seven retinitis pigmentosa (RP) subjects who received six weekly Transcorneal Electrical Stimulation (TES) sessions developed significant improvements in visual acuity (VA), quick contrast sensitivity function (qCSF), and/or Goldmann visual fields (GVF). We longitudinally monitored three of these participants for declining visual function due to natural RP progression to determine the duration of their responses and administered retreatments. Over a period of 29-35 months, repeated ETDRS VA, qCSF and/or GVF tests and three to six TES treatment courses consisting of six weekly sessions were administered in each eye of three RP participants every four to 16 months in an unmasked, prospective case series study. For two participants, there were significant VA improvements of 44-52 letters (0.88-1.04 logMAR) and 15-23 letters (0.3-0.46 logMAR) in the worse eye at baseline after each of three or four treatment courses of TES compared to initial baseline. They had no significant decreases from baseline for VA or qCSF over 29 to 35 months, The third participant had a significant mean improvement in VA in the eye with better baseline vision (p = 0.004) and binocularly (p visual improvements after TES that lasted for several months, it appears it may be possible to restore and prevent slowly diminishing vision over time with retreatments, which requires confirmation in a large-scale randomized controlled trial.

  18. Improving Students' Speaking Skill Through Audio Visual Media at 4 Th Grade of Labschool Elementary School East Jakarta

    OpenAIRE

    Herlina

    2014-01-01

    This research aims at helping students to improve their speaking skill by using audio visual media. The subject of the research was fourth grade students of Labschool Elementary School. This research was conducted at Labschool Elementary School Rawamangun East Jakarta at 2nd semester of 2013 with 28 students as participants. The method conducted in this research was classroom action research by Kemmis and McTaggart. The research was carried out in two cycles. The research method is conducted...

  19. Hear me Flying! Does Visual Impairment Improve Auditory Display Usability during a Simulated Flight?

    OpenAIRE

    Valéry, Benoît; Peysakhovich, Vsevolod; Causse, Mickaël

    2015-01-01

    Sonification refers to systems that convey information into the non-speech audio modality [1], . This technique has been largely invested in developing guidance systems for visually impaired individuals. In 2008, more than 140 systems of this type used in various application areas were referenced [2], . In aeronautics, such a system –namely the Sound Flyer– is currently used by visually impaired pilots in real flight context to control the aircraft attitude. However, it is unclear if this syste...

  20. A CAI System for Visually Impaired Children to Improve Abilities of Orientation and Mobility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoneda, Takahiro; Kudo, Hiroaki; Minagawa, Hiroki; Ohnishi, Noboru; Matsubara, Shizuya

    Some visually impaired children have difficulty in simple locomotion, and need orientation and mobility training. We developed a computer assisted instruction system which assists this training. A user realizes a task given by a tactile map and synthesized speech. The user walks around a room according to the task. The system gives the gap of walk path from its target path via both auditory and tactile feedback after the end of a task. Then the user can understand how well the user walked. We describe the detail of the proposed system and task, and the experimental result with three visually impaired children.

  1. Improving physics teaching materials on sound for visually impaired students in high school

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toenders, Frank G. C.; de Putter-Smits, Lesley G. A.; Sanders, Wendy T. M.; den Brok, Perry

    2017-09-01

    When visually impaired students attend regular high school, additional materials are necessary to help them understand physics concepts. The time for teachers to develop teaching materials for such students is scarce. Visually impaired students in regular high school physics classes often use a braille version of the physics textbook. Previously, we evaluated the physics learning environment of a blind high school student in a regular Dutch high school. In this research we evaluate the use of a revised braille textbook, relief drawings and 3D models. The research focussed on the topic of sound in grade 10.

  2. Letter to Editor: Electronic Medical Record, Step toward Improving the Quality of Healthcare Services and Treatment Provided to Patients

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elahe Gozali

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Information technology can increase the quality of medical care and is a target for many of the pioneers in the development of clinical or medical information. Electronic medical record (EMR, one of such technologies, is a well-known and valuable system to access patient information in hospitals. Electronic medical records which are used for the purpose of providing basic health care are available through a network of computers. All units of the hospital such as examination room, conference room, emergency, patient care units, nursing stations, operating rooms, recovery units, laboratory, radiology, pharmacy and medical records should have access to it. Among its advantages are improved quality of care provided to patients, better organized information, improvement in the timeliness of the process, accuracy and completeness of documentation, patient access to electronic copies of records, prevention of medication errors and allergies, reduced medical errors, immediate access to information in different places, decision support technology and improvement in the process of doing . S urely the use of electronic medical records has created a new dimension to patient care and clinical practice and will provide a comprehensive system to support people in the community and enhance the quality of services provided to them.

  3. Evaluation of an Audio-Visual Novela to Improve Beliefs, Attitudes and Knowledge toward Dementia: A Mixed-Methods Approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grigsby, Timothy J; Unger, Jennifer B; Molina, Gregory B; Baron, Mel

    2017-01-01

    Dementia is a clinical syndrome characterized by progressive degeneration in cognitive ability that limits the capacity for independent living. Interventions are needed to target the medical, social, psychological, and knowledge needs of caregivers and patients. This study used a mixed methods approach to evaluate the effectiveness of a dementia novela presented in an audio-visual format in improving dementia attitudes, beliefs and knowledge. Adults from Los Angeles (N = 42, 83% female, 90% Hispanic/Latino, mean age = 42.2 years, 41.5% with less than a high school education) viewed an audio-visual novela on dementia. Participants completed surveys immediately before and after viewing the material. The novela produced significant improvements in overall knowledge (t(41) = -9.79, p novela can be useful for improving attitudes and knowledge about dementia, but further work is needed to investigate the relation with health disparities in screening and treatment behaviors. Audio visual novelas are an innovative format for health education and change attitudes and knowledge about dementia.

  4. Use of Headphones to Improve Visual Attention of a Child with Cerebral Palsy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milligen, P. C.; McLaughlin, T. F.

    1990-01-01

    This study, involving a 10-year-old child with cerebral palsy and autism, found that the use of headphones resulted in an increase in on-task behavior whether stimuli were presented in an audiovisual mode, an audio-only mode, or a visual-only mode. Preference was for the auditory only or the mixed audiovisual stimuli. (DB)

  5. Traditional Project Management and the Visual Workplace Environment to Improve Project Success

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fichera, Christopher E.

    2016-01-01

    A majority of large IT projects fail to meet scheduled deadlines, are over budget and do not satisfy the end user. Many projects fail in spite of utilizing traditional project management techniques. Research of project management has not identified the use of a visual workspace as a feature affecting or influencing the success of a project during…

  6. Improving target detection in visual search through the augmenting multi-sensory cues

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hancock, P.A.; Mercado, J.E.; Merlo, J.; Erp, J.B.F. van

    2013-01-01

    The present experiment tested 60 individuals on a multiple screen, visual target detection task. Using a within-participant design, individuals received no-cue augmentation, an augmenting tactile cue alone, an augmenting auditory cue alone or both of the latter augmentations in combination. Results

  7. Opportunity for verbalization does not improve visual change detection performance : A state-trace analysis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sense, Florian; Morey, Candice C.; Prince, Melissa; Heathcote, Andrew; Morey, Richard D.

    Evidence suggests that there is a tendency to verbally recode visually-presented information, and that in some cases verbal recoding can boost memory performance. According to multi-component models of working memory, memory performance is increased because task-relevant information is

  8. Improving the Audio Game-Playing Performances of People with Visual Impairments through Multimodal Training

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balan, Oana; Moldoveanu, Alin; Moldoveanu, Florica; Nagy, Hunor; Wersenyi, Gyorgy; Unnporsson, Runar

    2017-01-01

    Introduction: As the number of people with visual impairments (that is, those who are blind or have low vision) is continuously increasing, rehabilitation and engineering researchers have identified the need to design sensory-substitution devices that would offer assistance and guidance to these people for performing navigational tasks. Auditory…

  9. A View of the Science Education Research Literature: Visual Aids in Laboratory Manuals Improve Comprehension.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robinson, William R.

    1998-01-01

    Argues that visual images can act as conceptual pegs for concepts or complicated procedures and help students perform better in the cognitive, affective, and manipulative domains of the laboratory. Conclusion was based on a study of chemistry laboratory students (N=83). (DDR)

  10. Understanding and Improving Blind Students' Access to Visual Information in Computer Science Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baker, Catherine M.

    2017-01-01

    Teaching people with disabilities tech skills empowers them to create solutions to problems they encounter and prepares them for careers. However, computer science is typically taught in a highly visual manner which can present barriers for people who are blind. The goal of this dissertation is to understand and decrease those barriers. The first…

  11. Impact of supplemental training programs on improving medical students' confidence in providing diabetes self-management education and support.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fazel, Maryam T; Fazel, Mohammad; Bedrossian, Nora L; Picazo, Fernando; Sobel, Julia D; Fazel, Mahdieh; Te, Charisse; Pendergrass, Merri L

    2017-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of supplemental diabetes-related training modalities and volunteer activities in increasing first-year medical students' knowledge/comfort in providing diabetes self-management education and support (DSMES) to patients. A group of medical students developed supplemental diabetes-related training/volunteer programs. The training modalities included an optional 7-session interprofessionally taught Diabetes Enrichment Elective and a 3-hour endocrinologist-led training session intended to prepare students for involvement in an inpatient DSMES volunteer program. The volunteer program provided the students with the opportunity to provide DSMES to patients with diabetes admitted to an academic medical center. Those participating in any of the stated programs were compared to those with no such training regarding confidence in providing DSMES using an optional online survey. The results were analyzed by using Mann-Whitney U test and descriptive analyses. A total of 18 first-year medical students responded to the optional survey with a response rate of ~30% (10 of 33) among participants in any training/volunteer program. First-year medical students who attended any of the offered optional programs had statistically significant higher comfort level in 4 of the 6 areas assessed regarding providing DSMES compared with those with no such training (ptraining modalities/volunteer programs can provide benefit in providing medical students with practical knowledge while improving their confidence in providing DSMES to patients with diabetes.

  12. An Evaluation of Family-Centered Rounds in the PICU: Room for Improvement Suggested by Families and Providers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levin, Amanda B; Fisher, Kiondra R; Cato, Krista D; Zurca, Adrian D; October, Tessie W

    2015-11-01

    To identify areas for improvement in family-centered rounds from both the family and provider perspectives. Prospective, cross-sectional mixed-methods study, including an objective measure (direct observation of family-centered rounds) and subjective measures (surveys of English-speaking families and providers) of family-centered rounds. PICU in a single, tertiary children's hospital. Families of children admitted to the PICU, physicians, and nurses. None. Two hundred thirty-two family-centered round encounters were observed over a 10-week period. Family-centered round encounters averaged 10.5 minutes per child. Multivariable regression analysis revealed that family presence was independently associated with length of family-centered rounds (p family talk time accounting for an average of 25 seconds (4%) of the encounter. Non-English-speaking families were less likely to attend family-centered rounds compared with English-speaking families even when physically present at the patient's bedside (p families and providers agreed that family-centered rounds keep the family informed and reported positive statements about family presence on family-centered rounds; however, PICU fellows did not agree that families provided pertinent information and nurses reported that family presence limited patient discussions. The primary advice families offered providers to improve family-centered rounds was to be more considerate and courteous, including accommodating family schedules, minimizing distractions, and limiting computer viewing. Family presence increased the length of family-centered rounds despite a small percentage of time spoken by families, suggesting longer rounds are due to changes in provider behavior when families are present. Also, non-English-speaking families may need more support to be able to attend and benefit from family-centered rounds. Lastly, in an era of full family-centered rounds acceptance, families and most providers, except fellows, report benefit

  13. Unifying Water Data Sources: How the CUAHSI Water Data Center is Enabling and Improving Access to a Growing Catalog of over 100 Data Providers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pollak, J.; Berry, K.; Couch, A.; Arrigo, J.; Hooper, R. P.

    2013-12-01

    Scientific data about water are collected and distributed by numerous sources which can differ tremendously in scale. As competition for water resources increases, increasing access to and understanding of information about water will be critical. The mission of the new CUAHSI Water Data Center (WDC) is to provide those researchers who collect data a medium to publish their datasets and give those wanting to discover data the proper tools to efficiently find the data that they seek. These tools include standards-based data publication, data discovery tools based upon faceted and telescoping search, and a data analysis tool HydroDesktop that downloads and unifies data in standardized formats. The CUAHSI Hydrologic Information System (HIS) is a community developed and open source system for sharing water data. As a federated, web service oriented system it enables data publication for a diverse user population including scientific investigators (Research Coordination Networks, Critical Zone Observatories), government agencies (USGS, NASA, EPA), and citizen scientists (watershed associations). HydroDesktop is an end user application for data consumption in this system that the WDC supports. This application can be used for finding, downloading, and analyzing data from the HIS. It provides a GIS interface that allows users to incorporate spatial data that are not accessible via HIS, simple analysis tools to facilitate graphing and visualization, tools to export data to common file types, and provides an extensible architecture that developers can build upon. HydroDesktop, however, is just one example of a data access client for HIS. The web service oriented architecture enables data access by an unlimited number of clients provided they can consume the web services used in HIS. One such example developed at the WDC is the 'Faceted Search Client', which capitalizes upon exploratory search concepts to improve accuracy and precision during search. We highlight such

  14. [The development of a computer-based visual field analyzer].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, D; Hou, W; Peng, C; Mou, Y

    2000-09-01

    Visual field is one of the important visual functions; it is the extent of the visual field defect that can be employed in judging whether the visual function is impaired. The rapid achievements in computer technologies do provide an impulse for improvement of visual field detection, making possible the automatic, rapid, accurate, detailed and large-scaled visual field detection. This paper gives a thorough description about development of the visual field analyzer, model TEC-2A, which is based on PC windows platform, Visual Basic software developing tool, ISA peripheral circuits, standard Goldmann visual field half-ball and standard stimulus.

  15. Functional and visual improvement with prosthetic replacement of the ocular surface ecosystem scleral lenses for irregular corneas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Jennifer C; Chiu, Gloria B; Bach, Dianne; Bababeygy, Simon R; Irvine, John; Heur, Martin

    2013-12-01

    To evaluate the Doheny Eye Institute Experience with Prosthetic Replacement of the Ocular Surface Ecosystem (PROSE) scleral lenses for the management of irregular corneas with outcomes based on visual acuity (VA) and visual function. A retrospective chart review of 58 subjects (90 eyes) with irregular corneal surfaces referred to the Doheny Eye Institute for PROSE treatment between July 2009 and December 2011 was performed. The best-corrected VA before and after PROSE fitting was recorded. A functional assessment before and after PROSE fitting was also performed using the Ocular Surface Disease Index, a 12-item questionnaire that grades the severity of ocular discomfort and vision-related function. Keratoconus (43%) represented the largest group, and post-PK astigmatism (31%) represented the second largest group of patients with irregular corneas who had completed the PROSE treatment. Patients with keratoconus had the greatest improvement in VA after PROSE fitting with an 88% improvement in the logarithm of the minimal angle of resolution vision. Patients with post-PK astigmatism had the greatest improvement in Ocular Surface Disease Index scores with a 79% improvement observed after PROSE fitting. PROSE scleral lenses offer improvements in the VA and function, and they could be an option for patients with irregular corneas who have failed conventional treatments before considering additional surgery.

  16. The application of online transcranial random noise stimulation and perceptual learning in the improvement of visual functions in mild myopia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Camilleri, Rebecca; Pavan, Andrea; Campana, Gianluca

    2016-08-01

    It has recently been demonstrated how perceptual learning, that is an improvement in a sensory/perceptual task upon practice, can be boosted by concurrent high-frequency transcranial random noise stimulation (tRNS). It has also been shown that perceptual learning can generalize and produce an improvement of visual functions in participants with mild refractive defects. By using three different groups of participants (single-blind study), we tested the efficacy of a short training (8 sessions) using a single Gabor contrast-detection task with concurrent hf-tRNS in comparison with the same training with sham stimulation or hf-tRNS with no concurrent training, in improving visual acuity (VA) and contrast sensitivity (CS) of individuals with uncorrected mild myopia. A short training with a contrast detection task is able to improve VA and CS only if coupled with hf-tRNS, whereas no effect on VA and marginal effects on CS are seen with the sole administration of hf-tRNS. Our results support the idea that, by boosting the rate of perceptual learning via the modulation of neuronal plasticity, hf-tRNS can be successfully used to reduce the duration of the perceptual training and/or to increase its efficacy in producing perceptual learning and generalization to improved VA and CS in individuals with uncorrected mild myopia. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Visualizing uncertain underground information for urban management: Poster presented at the Working with Uncertainty Workshop (IEEE VisWeek 2011), October 24, Providence, Rhode Island

    OpenAIRE

    Dummer, Martin; Krämer, Michel; Ruppert, Tobias; Kohlhammer, Jörn

    2011-01-01

    We present approaches for visualizing uncertainty in an application context through techniques for the visualization of uncertainty. We also describe methods for the reduction of the complexity of the visualization to avoid cognitive overload. Uncertainty in both natural and man-made structures under ground is thus communicated to the user in an appropriate, non threatening manner. The methods were evaluated during an end-user workshop of the research project DeepCity3D. The results of this w...

  18. Improved contrast sensitivity and visual acuity after wavefront-guided laser in situ keratomileusis: in-depth statistical analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tuan, Kuang-mon Ashley; Liang, Junzhong

    2006-02-01

    To evaluate changes in contrast sensitivity and visual acuity following wavefront-guided laser in situ keratomileusis (LASIK) procedures with the Visx CustomVue system. Six clinical sites that participated in an Investigational Device Exemption clinical study. Two hundred seventy-four myopic astigmatic eyes (spherical equivalent range -0.63 to -6.00 diopters) completed 6 months of follow-up examinations. Wavefront-guided procedures using the WaveScan aberrometer and Star S4 excimer laser system with variable spot scanning were performed at 6 clinical locations. Visual acuity and contrast sensitivity under photopic, mesopic, and mesopic-with-glare lighting conditions were tested preoperatively and over a 6-month follow-up period. This study was a retrospective analysis of contrast sensitivity data with controls for the effects of retinal magnification, mesopic pupil size, and the influence of prior soft contact lens wear on visual outcome. Patients experienced statistically significant improvements in contrast sensitivity at all spatial frequencies and under all lighting conditions (Ppatients. There was more improvement at higher (12 cycles per degree [cpd], 18 cpd) than lower (3 cpd) spatial frequencies. No correlation was found between mesopic pupil size and contrast sensitivity. Results stratified by spectacle or soft contact lens wear were similar. Soft contact lens wearers had slightly higher disability glare scores than spectacle wearers. A significant number of patients experienced improved corneal optical quality after wavefront-guided LASIK. The contrast sensitivity in most patients was unchanged. Contrast sensitivity improved in a significant number of patients. There was no correlation between mesopic pupil size and mesopic or mesopic-with-glare contrast performance. Spectacle wearers improved more than soft contact lens wearers.

  19. Computer Access for the Visually Impaired.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krolick, Bettye

    1984-01-01

    Provides information on and evaluation of microcomputer equipment modifications for improving accessibility to the visually impaired. Equipment discussed includes input and visual output modification techniques and devices, software designed for visually impaired users, and braille output peripherals. Lists sources for available peripherals,…

  20. Visual improvement and pain resolution in traumatic optic nerve sheath meningocele treated by optic nerve sheath fenestration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hui, Chen; Xiaoyun, Wu; Yi, Liang; Ningbo, Chen; Xizhong, Qiu; Shaowei, Yang; Wei, Lin; Maozhu, Zhao; Wubo, Ma; Xuefei, Pan; Li, Lai; Haibin, Tan; Daiwen, Zeng; Yong, Jiang

    2014-01-01

    There is no consensus as to the optimum treatment for traumatic optic neuropathy (TON). The decision to intervene medically or surgically, or simply observe was recommended to be on an individual basis. The purpose of this study is to test whether optic nerve sheath fenestration (ONSF) could improve vision in patients with traumatic optic nerve sheath meningocele, although it was reported to be effective in patients with traumatic optic nerve sheath hematoma. ONSF was performed on two traumatic patients with dilated optic nerve sheath from MRI. Both patients initially suspected as traumatic optic nerve sheath hematoma were diagnosed as traumatic optic nerve sheath meningocele by intraoperative findings of the enlarged optic nerve sheath and clear fluid drained without evidence of blood in the subdural space. Moreover, significant orbit/head pain resolution and visual improvement within a week after ONSF was found. When TON presents with an enlarged optic nerve/sheath on CT or MRI with visual loss, an optic nerve sheath meningocele should be considered with the consideration that ONSF may benefit both visual acuity and post-traumatic pain, if present.

  1. Use of a disclosed plaque visualization technique improved the self-performed, tooth brushing ability of primary schoolchildren.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chounchaisithi, Napa; Santiwong, Busayarat; Sutthavong, Sirikarn; Asvanit, Pompun

    2014-02-01

    Disclosing agents have a long history of use as an aid in children's tooth brushing instruction. However, their benefit when used to improve self-performed tooth brushing ability without any tooth brushing instruction has not been investigated. To evaluate the effect of disclosed plaque visualization on improving the self-performed, tooth brushing ability of primary school children. A cluster-randomized, crossover study was conducted in Nakhon Nayok province, Thailand. A total of 122 second-grade schoolchildren, aged 8-10 years old, from 12 schools were randomly divided into 2 groups. The first group was assigned to brush with disclosed plaque visualization, while the other group brushed without disclosed plaque visualization. One month later the groups switched procedures. Tooth brushing ability was evaluated by the subjects' reduction in patient hygiene performance (PHP) scores. The data were analyzed using repeated-measures analysis of variance, with significance set at pbrushing ability in all areas of the mouth (pteeth, mandibular teeth, buccal surfaces, and areas adjacent to the gingival margin (pbrushing ability, and could be used in school-based oral health promotion programs.

  2. Improving diabetes care for young people with type 1 diabetes through visual learning on mobile phones: mixed-methods study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frøisland, Dag Helge; Arsand, Eirik; Skårderud, Finn

    2012-08-06

    Only 17% of Norwegian children and adolescents with diabetes achieve international treatment goals measured by glycated hemoglobin (HbA(1c)). Classic patient-physician consultations seem to be poorly adapted to young children. New strategies that are better attuned to young people to improve support of adolescents' self-management of diabetes need to be tested and evaluated. (1) To explore how applications for mobile phones can be used in follow-up of adolescents with type 1 diabetes, and (2) to use the findings to guide further development of the applications and as a basis for future studies. We pilot tested two mobile phone applications: (1) an application that contained a picture-based diabetes diary to record physical activity and photos taken with the phone camera of food eaten, where the phone also communicated with the glucometer by Bluetooth technology to capture blood glucose values, and (2) a Web-based, password-secured and encrypted short message service (SMS), based on access using login passwords received via SMS to be used by participants to send messages to their providers when they faced obstacles in everyday life, and to send educational messages to the participants. At the end of the 3-month pilot study, 12 participants (7 girls and 5 boys ) aged 13-19 years completed semistructured interviews. The participants had a mean HbA(1c )value of 8.3 (SD 0.3), mean age of 16.2 (SD 1.7) years, mean body mass index of 23.3 (SD 3.2) kg/m(2), and mean diabetes duration of 7.5 (SD 4.6) years. We applied three additional measurements: change in metabolic control as measured by HbA(1c), the System Usability Scale, and diabetes knowledge. From the interviews, three main categories emerged: visualization, access, and software changes. Participants appreciated the picture-based diary more than the SMS solution. Visualization of cornerstones in diabetes self-care (ie, diet, insulin dosage, physical activity, and pre- and postprandial glucose measurements all

  3. Improving Precision in Navigating Laparoscopic Surgery Instruments toward a Planar Target Using Haptic and Visual Feedback

    OpenAIRE

    Howard, Thomas; Szewczyk, Jérôme

    2016-01-01

    The poor ergonomics of laparoscopic surgery is a widely recognized source of difficulty for surgeons, leading to sub-optimal performance on their part and sometimes injury to the patient. The main recognized causes for such degraded performance are lost and distorted perception of interaction forces and degraded instrument navigation capabilities. The latter, due mainly to losses in visual and kinesthetic depth perception and modified hand-eye coordination, can prevent precise navigation of i...

  4. Verbal to visual code switching improves working memory in older adults: An fMRI study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariko eOsaka

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available The effects of verbal to visual code switching training on working memory performance were investigated in the elderly. Twenty-five elderly people were introduced to a verbal to visual code switching strategy (training group while the other 25 were not (control group. During this strategy training period, participants in the training group practiced focusing their attention on a target word both by drawing the target’s figure and by forming mental images of the target. To explore the neural substrates underlying strategy effects, fMRI was used to measure brain activity of the elderly in both groups while they performed a working memory task (reading span test, RST, before and after the attention training period. RST recognition accuracy was enhanced only in the training group. fMRI data for this group showed increased activation in the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC, a region that typically shows activation in young adults performing the RST. Furthermore, activation was found both in the left and right inferior parietal lobule (IPL and right superior parietal lobule (SPL, while there was no activation in these areas for the control group. These findings suggest that using a strategy of verbal to visual code switching helped the elderly participants to maintain the words in working memory.

  5. Verbal to visual code switching improves working memory in older adults: an fMRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osaka, Mariko; Otsuka, Yuki; Osaka, Naoyuki

    2012-01-01

    The effect of verbal to visual code switching training on working memory performance was investigated in individuals aged 63 and older. During verbal working memory task performance, the training group (n = 25) was introduced to a verbal to visual code switching strategy while the control group (n = 25) was not exposed to such a strategy. Working memory recognition accuracy was enhanced only in the training group. To explore the neural substrates underlying these strategy effects, fMRI was used to measure brain activity in both groups during working memory task performance before and after an attention training period. In a comparison between pre- and post-training sessions, results showed increased activation in the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC). Relative to the control group, the post-training group exhibited increased activation in the left and right inferior parietal lobules (IPLs) and right superior parietal lobule (SPL). These findings suggest that use of a verbal to visual code switching strategy may assist older individuals in the maintenance of information in working memory.

  6. Do Lower Target Temperatures or Prolonged Cooling Provide Improved Outcomes for Comatose Survivors of Cardiac Arrest Treated With Hypothermia?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kagawa, Eisuke; Dote, Keigo; Kato, Masaya; Sasaki, Shota; Oda, Noboru; Nakano, Yoshinori; Miura, Katsuya; Inoue, Ichiro; Kihara, Yasuki

    2015-09-21

    Optimal protocols for targeted temperature management are still unclear. This study investigated whether lower target temperatures and/or prolonged cooling could provide improved outcomes in comatose survivors of cardiac arrest. This observational study was conducted using the prospectively collected targeted temperature management database in Hiroshima, Japan. Between September 2003 and September 2014, 237 patients treated with TTM after cardiac arrest were enrolled in this study. The target temperatures and durations were assigned by the treating physicians regardless of the patients' conditions. Favorable outcomes were defined as a cerebral performance category scale of 1 or 2 at the 90-day follow-up time point. The rate of favorable outcomes were similar between the patients whose protocols of target temperature were 28 hours and target temperatures <34°C were associated with more frequent lethal arrhythmia, pneumonia, and/or bleedings. Prolonged durations of cooling and rewarming ≥28 hours may not improve outcomes and may increase complications. Further studies are necessary to assess the hypothesis that target temperatures <34°C provide improved outcomes in patients treated with extracorporeal cardiopulmonary resuscitation. © 2015 The Authors. Published on behalf of the American Heart Association, Inc., by Wiley Blackwell.

  7. Mobile technology intervention to improve care coordination between HIV and substance use treatment providers: development, training, and evaluation protocol.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Claborn, Kasey; Becker, Sara; Ramsey, Susan; Rich, Josiah; Friedmann, Peter D

    2017-03-14

    People living with HIV (PLWH) with a substance use disorder (SUD) tend to receive inadequate medical care in part because of a siloed healthcare system in which HIV and substance use services are delivered separately. Ideal treatment requires an interdisciplinary, team-based coordinated care approach, but many structural and systemic barriers impede the integration of HIV and SUD services. The current protocol describes the development and preliminary evaluation of a care coordination intervention (CCI), consisting of a tablet-based mobile platform for HIV and SUD treatment providers, an interagency communication protocol, and a training protocol. We hypothesize that HIV and SUD treatment providers will find the CCI to be acceptable, and that after receipt of the CCI, providers will: exhibit higher retention in dual care among patients, report increased frequency and quality of communication, and report increased rates of relational coordination. A three phase approach is used to refine and evaluate the CCI. Phase 1 consists of in-depth qualitative interviews with 8 key stakeholders as well as clinical audits of participating HIV and SUD treatment agencies. Phase 2 contains functionality testing of the mobile platform with frontline HIV and SUD treatment providers, followed by refinement of the CCI. Phase 3 consists of a pre-, post-test trial with 30 SUD and 30 HIV treatment providers. Data will be collected at the provider, organization, and patient levels. Providers will complete assessments at baseline, immediately post-training, and at 1-, 3-, and 6-months post-training. Organizational data will be collected at baseline, 1-, 3-, and 6-months post training, while patient data will be collected at baseline and 6-months post training. This study will develop and evaluate a CCI consisting of a tablet-based mobile platform for treatment providers, an interagency communication protocol, and a training protocol as a means of improving the integration of care for PLWH

  8. An integrated methodology for process improvement and delivery system visualization at a multidisciplinary cancer center.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singprasong, Rachanee; Eldabi, Tillal

    2013-01-01

    Multidisciplinary cancer centers require an integrated, collaborative, and stream-lined workflow in order to provide high quality of patient care. Due to the complex nature of cancer care and continuing changes to treatment techniques and technologies, it is a constant struggle for centers to obtain a systemic and holistic view of treatment workflow for improving the delivery systems. Project management techniques, Responsibility matrix and a swim-lane activity diagram representing sequence of activities can be combined for data collection, presentation, and evaluation of the patient care. This paper presents this integrated methodology using multidisciplinary meetings and walking the route approach for data collection, integrated responsibility matrix and swim-lane activity diagram with activity time for data representation and 5-why and gap analysis approach for data analysis. This enables collection of right detail of information in a shorter time frame by identifying process flaws and deficiencies while being independent of the nature of the patient's disease or treatment techniques. A case study of a multidisciplinary regional cancer centre is used to illustrate effectiveness of the proposed methodology and demonstrates that the methodology is simple to understand, allowing for minimal training of staff and rapid implementation. © 2011 National Association for Healthcare Quality.

  9. Public-private partnerships to improve primary healthcare surgeries: clarifying assumptions about the role of private provider activities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mudyarabikwa, Oliver; Tobi, Patrick; Regmi, Krishna

    2017-07-01

    Aim To examine assumptions about public-private partnership (PPP) activities and their role in improving public procurement of primary healthcare surgeries. PPPs were developed to improve the quality of care and patient satisfaction. However, evidence of their effectiveness in delivering health benefits is limited. A qualitative study design was employed. A total of 25 interviews with public sector staff (n=23) and private sector managers (n=2) were conducted to understand their interpretations of assumptions in the activities of private investors and service contractors participating in Local Improvement Finance Trust (LIFT) partnerships. Realist evaluation principles were applied in the data analysis to interpret the findings. Six thematic areas of assumed health benefits were identified: (i) quality improvement; (ii) improved risk management; (iii) reduced procurement costs; (iv) increased efficiency; (v) community involvement; and (vi) sustainable investment. Primary Care Trusts that chose to procure their surgeries through LIFT were expected to support its implementation by providing an environment conducive for the private participants to achieve these benefits. Private participant activities were found to be based on a range of explicit and tacit assumptions perceived helpful in achieving government objectives for LIFT. The success of PPPs depended upon private participants' (i) capacity to assess how PPP assumptions added value to their activities, (ii) effectiveness in interpreting assumptions in their expected activities, and (iii) preparedness to align their business principles to government objectives for PPPs. They risked missing some of the expected benefits because of some factors constraining realization of the assumptions. The ways in which private participants preferred to carry out their activities also influenced the extent to which expected benefits were achieved. Giving more discretion to public than private participants over critical

  10. Lost in the rush to national reform: recommendations to improve impact on behavioral health providers in rural areas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Semansky, Rafael; Willging, Cathleen; Ley, David J; Rylko-Bauer, Barbara

    2012-05-01

    As the United States embarks on the most ambitious national health reform since the 1960s, this article highlights the challenges faced by behavioral health agencies, providers, and clients in rural areas and presents recommendations to improve access to and quality of services. Lessons learned from five years of research on a major systems-change initiative in New Mexico illuminate potential problem areas for rural agencies under national health reform, including insufficient financial resources, shortages of trained staff, particularly clinicians with advanced credentials, and delays in adopting the latest information technology. We recommend that rural states: (1) undertake careful planning for smooth transitions; (2) provide financial resources and technical assistance to expand rural safety-net services and capacity; (3) modify the health home model for the rural context; and (4) engage in ongoing evaluation, which can help ensure the early identification and rectification of unanticipated implementation issues.

  11. Interactive Data Visualization

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Steed, Chad A [ORNL

    2017-01-01

    Interactive data visualization leverages human visual perception and cognition to improve the accuracy and effectiveness of data analysis. When combined with automated data analytics, data visualization systems orchestrate the strengths of humans with the computational power of machines to solve problems neither approach can manage in isolation. In the intelligent transportation system domain, such systems are necessary to support decision making in large and complex data streams. In this chapter, we provide an introduction to several key topics related to the design of data visualization systems. In addition to an overview of key techniques and strategies, we will describe practical design principles. The chapter is concluded with a detailed case study involving the design of a multivariate visualization tool.

  12. Kinematic Visual Biofeedback Improves Accuracy of Learning a Swallowing Maneuver and Accuracy of Clinician Cues During Training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Azola, Alba M; Sunday, Kirstyn L; Humbert, Ianessa A

    2017-02-01

    Submental surface electromyography (ssEMG) visual biofeedback is widely used to train swallowing maneuvers. This study compares the effect of ssEMG and videofluoroscopy (VF) visual biofeedback on hyo-laryngeal accuracy when training a swallowing maneuver. Furthermore, it examines the clinician's ability to provide accurate verbal cues during swallowing maneuver training. Thirty healthy adults performed the volitional laryngeal vestibule closure maneuver (vLVC), which involves swallowing and sustaining closure of the laryngeal vestibule for 2 s. The study included two stages: (1) first accurate demonstration of the vLVC maneuver, followed by (2) training-20 vLVC training swallows. Participants were randomized into three groups: (a) ssEMG biofeedback only, (b) VF biofeedback only, and (c) mixed biofeedback (VF for the first accurate demonstration achieving stage and ssEMG for the training stage). Participants' performances were verbally critiqued or reinforced in real time while both the clinician and participant were observing the assigned visual biofeedback. VF and ssEMG were continuously recorded for all participants. Results show that accuracy of both vLVC performance and clinician cues was greater with VF biofeedback than with either ssEMG or mixed biofeedback (p < 0.001). Using ssEMG for providing real-time biofeedback during training could lead to errors while learning and training a swallowing maneuver.

  13. Two-position supine/prone myocardial perfusion SPECT (MPS) imaging improves visual inter-observer correlation and agreement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arsanjani, Reza; Hayes, Sean W; Fish, Mathews; Shalev, Aryeh; Nakanishi, Rine; Thomson, Louise E J; Friedman, John D; Germano, Guido; Berman, Daniel S; Slomka, Piotr

    2014-08-01

    We aimed to compare the inter-observer agreement between two experienced readers using supine vs combined supine/prone myocardial perfusion SPECT (MPS) in a large population. 1,181 consecutive patients without known coronary artery disease (CAD) undergoing rest (201)Tl/stress (99m)Tc-sestamibi MPS studies were evaluated. Visual reads were performed in two consecutive steps, with readers scoring the stress supine perfusion images during step 1 and rescoring the images using both supine/prone data during step 2. Visual summed stress scores (SSS) of two readers including regional scores in different vascular territories were compared. The specificity for both readers improved using combined supine/prone imaging (reader 1: 92% vs 86% [P = .0002], reader 2: 88% vs 72% [P only reading. The overall correlation between SSS scores for two readers improved with supine/prone imaging for both genders, as well as in the left anterior descending and right coronary territories. The inter-observer correlation and agreement significantly improve using two-position supine/prone vs supine-only imaging.

  14. Audio-Visual and Autogenic Relaxation Alter Amplitude of Alpha EEG Band, Causing Improvements in Mental Work Performance in Athletes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mikicin, Mirosław; Kowalczyk, Marek

    2015-09-01

    The aim of the present study was to investigate the effect of regular audio-visual relaxation combined with Schultz's autogenic training on: (1) the results of behavioral tests that evaluate work performance during burdensome cognitive tasks (Kraepelin test), (2) changes in classical EEG alpha frequency band, neocortex (frontal, temporal, occipital, parietal), hemisphere (left, right) versus condition (only relaxation 7-12 Hz). Both experimental (EG) and age-and skill-matched control group (CG) consisted of eighteen athletes (ten males and eight females). After 7-month training EG demonstrated changes in the amplitude of mean electrical activity of the EEG alpha bend at rest and an improvement was significantly changing and an improvement in almost all components of Kraepelin test. The same examined variables in CG were unchanged following the period without the intervention. Summing up, combining audio-visual relaxation with autogenic training significantly improves athlete's ability to perform a prolonged mental effort. These changes are accompanied by greater amplitude of waves in alpha band in the state of relax. The results suggest usefulness of relaxation techniques during performance of mentally difficult sports tasks (sports based on speed and stamina, sports games, combat sports) and during relax of athletes.

  15. A texture-based framework for improving CFD data visualization in a virtual environment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bivins, Gerrick O' Ron [Iowa State Univ., Ames, IA (United States)

    2005-01-01

    In the field of computational fluid dynamics (CFD) accurate representations of fluid phenomena can be simulated hut require large amounts of data to represent the flow domain. Most datasets generated from a CFD simulation can be coarse, ~10,000 nodes or cells, or very fine with node counts on the order of 1,000,000. A typical dataset solution can also contain multiple solutions for each node, pertaining to various properties of the flow at a particular node. Scalar properties such as density, temperature, pressure, and velocity magnitude are properties that are typically calculated and stored in a dataset solution. Solutions are not limited to just scalar properties. Vector quantities, such as velocity, are also often calculated and stored for a CFD simulation. Accessing all of this data efficiently during runtime is a key problem for visualization in an interactive application. Understanding simulation solutions requires a post-processing tool to convert the data into something more meaningful. Ideally, the application would present an interactive visual representation of the numerical data for any dataset that was simulated while maintaining the accuracy of the calculated solution. Most CFD applications currently sacrifice interactivity for accuracy, yielding highly detailed flow descriptions hut limiting interaction for investigating the field.

  16. A texture-based frameowrk for improving CFD data visualization in a virtual environment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bivins, Gerrick O' Ron [Iowa State Univ., Ames, IA (United States)

    2005-01-01

    In the field of computational fluid dynamics (CFD) accurate representations of fluid phenomena can be simulated but require large amounts of data to represent the flow domain. Most datasets generated from a CFD simulation can be coarse, ~ 10,000 nodes or cells, or very fine with node counts on the order of 1,000,000. A typical dataset solution can also contain multiple solutions for each node, pertaining to various properties of the flow at a particular node. Scalar properties such as density, temperature, pressure, and velocity magnitude are properties that are typically calculated and stored in a dataset solution. Solutions are not limited to just scalar properties. Vector quantities, such as velocity, are also often calculated and stored for a CFD simulation. Accessing all of this data efficiently during runtime is a key problem for visualization in an interactive application. Understanding simulation solutions requires a post-processing tool to convert the data into something more meaningful. Ideally, the application would present an interactive visual representation of the numerical data for any dataset that was simulated while maintaining the accuracy of the calculated solution. Most CFD applications currently sacrifice interactivity for accuracy, yielding highly detailed flow descriptions but limiting interaction for investigating the field.

  17. Consumer Health Informatics: The Application of ICT in Improving Patient-Provider Partnership for a Better Health Care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abaidoo, Benjamin; Larweh, Benjamin Teye

    2014-01-01

    There is a growing interest concerning the potential of ICT solutions that are customized to consumers. This emerging discipline referred to as consumer health informatics (CHI) plays a major role in providing information to patients and the public, and facilitates the promotion of self-management. The concept of CHI has emerged out of the desire of most patients to shoulder responsibilities regarding their health and a growing desire of health practitioners to fully appreciate the potential of the patient. To describe the role of ICT in improving the patient-provider partnership in consumer health informatics. Systematic reviewing of literature, identification of reference sources and formulation of search strategies and manual search regarding the significance of developed CHI applications in healthcare delivery. New consumer health IT applications have been developed to be used on a variety of different platforms, including the Web, messaging systems, PDAs, and cell phones. These applications assists patients with self-management through reminders and prompts, delivery of real-time data on a patient's health condition to patients and providers, web-based communication and personal electronic health information. New tools are being developed for the purposes of providing information to patients and the public which has enhanced decision making in health matters and an avenue for clinicians and consumers to exchange health information for personal and public use. This calls for corroboration among healthcare organizations, governments and the ICT industry to develop new research and IT innovations which are tailored to the health needs of the consumer.

  18. Discordant indigenous and provider frames explain challenges in improving access to arthritis care: a qualitative study using constructivist grounded theory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thurston, Wilfreda E; Coupal, Stephanie; Jones, C Allyson; Crowshoe, Lynden F J; Marshall, Deborah A; Homik, Joanne; Barnabe, Cheryl

    2014-06-11

    Access to health services is a determinant of population health and is known to be reduced for a variety of specialist services for Indigenous populations in Canada. With arthritis being the most common chronic condition experienced by Indigenous populations and causing high levels of disability, it is critical to resolve access disparities through an understanding of barriers and facilitators to care. The objective of this study was to inform future health services reform by investigating health care access from the perspective of Aboriginal people with arthritis and health professionals. Using constructivist grounded theory methodology we investigated Indigenous peoples' experiences in accessing arthritis care through the reports of 16 patients and 15 healthcare providers in Alberta, Canada. Semi-structured interviews were conducted between July 2012 and February 2013 and transcribed verbatim. The patient and provider data were first analyzed separately by two team members then brought together to form a framework. The framework was refined through further analysis following the multidisciplinary research team's discussions. Once the framework was developed, reports on the patient and provider data were shared with each participant group independently and participants were interviewed to assess validity of the summary. In the resulting theoretical framework Indigenous participants framed their experience with arthritis as 'toughing it out' and spoke of racism encountered in the healthcare setting as a deterrent to pursuing care. Healthcare providers were frustrated by high disease severity and missed appointments, and framed Indigenous patients as lacking 'buy-in'. Constraints imposed by complex healthcare systems contributed to tensions between Indigenous peoples and providers. Low specialist care utilization rates among Indigenous people cannot be attributed to cultural and social preferences. Further, the assumptions made by providers lead to stereotyping and

  19. Development and Operation of the nuclear technology program for improving the public acceptance by providing the right information

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lee, Juwoon; Kang, Mincheol; Min, Sangky; Yi, Jongmin; Yi, Yunyoung

    2013-11-15

    This detailed assignment conducted to improve the communication efficiency through the operation of differentiated programs to accomplish 'Establishment of knowledge diffusion system for improvement of Nuclear understanding', which is the purpose of the general assignment. We developed the programs on each social opinion leader groups by providing the right information on nuclear(radiation) technology, and had a forum for providing the right information on each social groups. Also, Consisted the consultant group, which participates humanities and social sciences, civic group, science teachers, the press, national assembly workers. Technology PR was performed 4 times, which is 1 time more than the original plan of 4 times. In the theme of affection of radiation, we broadened the vision of various fields which enabled to approach in general for the PR program. We Induced a positive reaction from the participants in political areas which coexistent of uncertain expectation and difficult vision of nuclear and radiation, by sharing the development possibility in relation with potential values of radiation industry and other industries and delivering accurate information, not a fragmentary knowledge, but in general. We hope that this results will contribute to establishing the effective nuclear knowledge diffusion program system.

  20. Exercise and physical training improve physical function in older adults with visual impairments but their effect on falls is unclear: a systematic review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Gleeson

    2014-09-01

    [Gleeson M, Sherrington C, Keay L (2014 Exercise and physical training improve physical function in older adults with visual impairments but their effect on falls is unclear: a systematic review. Journal of Physiotherapy 60: 130–135

  1. Accuracy of weight estimation by the Broselow tape is substantially improved by including a visual assessment of body habitus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wells, Mike; Goldstein, Lara; Bentley, Alison

    2017-10-18

    BackgroundThe Broselow tape (BT) has been shown to estimate weight poorly primarily because of variations in body habitus. The manufacturers have suggested that a visual assessment of habitus may be used to increase its performance. This study evaluated the ability of habitus-modified models to improve the accuracy thereof.MethodsA post hoc analysis of prospectively collected data from four hospitals in Johannesburg, South Africa, on a population of 1,085 children. Sixteen a priori models generated a modified weight estimation or drug dose based on the BT weight and a gestalt assessment of habitus.ResultsThe habitus-modified method suggested by the manufacturer did not improve the accuracy of the BT. Five dosing and four weight-estimation models were identified that markedly improved dosing and weight estimation accuracy, respectively. The best dosing model improved dosing accuracy (doses within 10% of correct dose) from 52.0 to 69.6% and reduced critical dosing errors from 16.5 to 4.3%. The best weight-estimation model improved accuracy from 59.4 to 81.9% and reduced critical errors from 11.8 to 1.9%.ConclusionThe accuracy of the BT as a drug-dosing and weight-estimation device can be substantially improved by including an appraisal of body habitus in the methodology.Pediatric Research advance online publication, 18 October 2017; doi:10.1038/pr.2017.222.

  2. Design for low angle sunlight in high latitudes techniques to analyse and improve visual comfort

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Evans, J.M.; Schiller, S. de [Research Centre Habitat and Energy Faculty of Architecture, Design and Urbanism, University of Buneos Aires, Capital Federal (Argentina)

    1997-12-31

    This presentation analyses the incidence of low angle sun in high latitudes of Argentina from 45 deg to 55 deg S. taking into account the solar geometry and the relative cloud cover. This low angle sun, desirable for heat gain in cold climates, can cause visual discomfort, especially in buildings such as schools, hospitals, offices with VDU screens and other situations where users have fixed working positions. Three different techniques for evaluating situations of thermal discomfort are compared: physical models with direct observation or video recordings, computer animations, and graphic techniques, taking into account the time, accuracy, and ease of comprehension of the results. The use of these methods for teaching is also considered. (orig.) 5 refs.

  3. IMPROVEMENT METHODS OF DIAGNOSIS THE VISUAL ANALYSER OF PATIENTS WITH MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. V. Kovalenko

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available 137 (274 eyes relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis patients have been given detailed neuroophthalmologic examination. 58 of these patients (74 eyes had a previous history of optic neuritis. As a result, the most informative methods of examination have been identified. These include the estimation of the frequency characteristics of the vision (vizokontrastoperimetriya, low-contrast tests Sloan, standard static automated perimetry, pattern visual evoked potentials, and optical coherence tomography which is used to measure macular volumes and retinal nerve fiber layer thickness. The above – mentioned methods make it possible to reveal the involvement of the optic analyzer in the inflammatory and neurodegenerative process at the pre-clinical stage. The obtained results allow us to recommend inclusion of the methods in the standard algorithm for the examination of patients with probable multiple sclerosis. 

  4. Visual prosody and speech intelligibility: head movement improves auditory speech perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munhall, K G; Jones, Jeffery A; Callan, Daniel E; Kuratate, Takaaki; Vatikiotis-Bateson, Eric

    2004-02-01

    People naturally move their heads when they speak, and our study shows that this rhythmic head motion conveys linguistic information. Three-dimensional head and face motion and the acoustics of a talker producing Japanese sentences were recorded and analyzed. The head movement correlated strongly with the pitch (fundamental frequency) and amplitude of the talker's voice. In a perception study, Japanese subjects viewed realistic talking-head animations based on these movement recordings in a speech-in-noise task. The animations allowed the head motion to be manipulated without changing other characteristics of the visual or acoustic speech. Subjects correctly identified more syllables when natural head motion was present in the animation than when it was eliminated or distorted. These results suggest that nonverbal gestures such as head movements play a more direct role in the perception of speech than previously known.

  5. High baseline activity in inferior temporal cortex improves neural and behavioral discriminability during visual categorization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nazli eEmadi

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Spontaneous firing is a ubiquitous property of neural activity in the brain. Recent literature suggests that this baseline activity plays a key role in perception. However, it is not known how the baseline activity contributes to neural coding and behavior. Here, by recording from the single neurons in the inferior temporal cortex of monkeys performing a visual categorization task, we thoroughly explored the relationship between baseline activity, the evoked response, and behavior. Specifically we found that a low-frequency (< 8 Hz oscillation in the spike train, prior and phase-locked to the stimulus onset, was correlated with increased gamma power and neuronal baseline activity. This enhancement of the baseline activity was then followed by an increase in the neural selectivity and the response reliability and eventually a higher behavioral performance.

  6. EFSA Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA); Scientific Opinion on the substantiation of health claims related to oligomeric procyanidins (OPCs) from grape (Vitis vinifera L.) seeds and improvement of visual adaptation to the dark (ID 680) pursuant to Article 13(1) of Regulation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tetens, Inge

    conclusions could be drawn for the scientific substantiation of the claim. On the basis of the data presented, the Panel concludes that a cause and effect relationship has not been established between the consumption of OPCs from grape (Vitis vinifera L.) seeds and improvement of visual adaptation to the dark....... claims in relation to oligomeric procyanidins (OPCs) from grape (Vitis vinifera L.) seeds and improvement of visual adaptation to the dark. The scientific substantiation is based on the information provided by the Member States in the consolidated list of Article 13 health claims and references that EFSA......, clarifications from Member States and the references provided, the Panel assumes that the claimed effect refers to the improvement of visual adaptation to the dark. The Panel considers that improvement of visual adaptation to the dark is a beneficial physiological effect. No references were provided from which...

  7. Direct Visualization of RNA-DNA Primer Removal from Okazaki Fragments Provides Support for Flap Cleavage and Exonucleolytic Pathways in Eukaryotic Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Bochao; Hu, Jiazhi; Wang, Jingna; Kong, Daochun

    2017-03-24

    During DNA replication in eukaryotic cells, short single-stranded DNA segments known as Okazaki fragments are first synthesized on the lagging strand. The Okazaki fragments originate from ∼35-nucleotide-long RNA-DNA primers. After Okazaki fragment synthesis, these primers must be removed to allow fragment joining into a continuous lagging strand. To date, the models of enzymatic machinery that removes the RNA-DNA primers have come almost exclusively from biochemical reconstitution studies and some genetic interaction assays, and there is little direct evidence to confirm these models. One obstacle to elucidating Okazaki fragment processing has been the lack of methods that can directly examine primer removal in vivo In this study, we developed an electron microscopy assay that can visualize nucleotide flap structures on DNA replication forks in fission yeast ( Schizosaccharomyces pombe ). With this assay, we first demonstrated the generation of flap structures during Okazaki fragment processing in vivo The mean and median lengths of the flaps in wild-type cells were ∼51 and ∼41 nucleotides, respectively. We also used yeast mutants to investigate the impact of deleting key DNA replication nucleases on these flap structures. Our results provided direct in vivo evidence for a previously proposed flap cleavage pathway and the critical function of Dna2 and Fen1 in cleaving these flaps. In addition, we found evidence for another previously proposed exonucleolytic pathway involving RNA-DNA primer digestion by exonucleases RNase H2 and Exo1. Taken together, our observations suggest a dual mechanism for Okazaki fragment maturation in lagging strand synthesis and establish a new strategy for interrogation of this fascinating process. © 2017 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  8. Visual Analogue Scale for Anxiety and Amsterdam Preoperative Anxiety Scale Provide a Simple and Reliable Measurement of Preoperative Anxiety in Patients Undergoing Cardiac Surgery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joaquín Hernández-Palazón

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Background: Anxiety is an emotional state characterized by apprehension and fear resulting from anticipation of a threatening event. Objectives: The present study aimed to analyze the incidence and level of preoperative anxiety in the patients scheduled for cardiac surgery by using a Visual Analogue Scale for Anxiety (VAS-A and Amsterdam Preoperative Anxiety and Information Scale (APAIS and to identify the influencing clinical factors. Patients and Methods: This prospective, longitudinal study was performed on 300 cardiac surgery patients in a single university hospital. The patients were assessed regarding their preoperative anxiety level using VAS-A, APAIS, and a set of specific anxiety-related questions. Their demographic features as well as their anesthetic and surgical characteristics (ASA physical status, EuroSCORE, preoperative Length of Stay (LoS, and surgical history were recorded, as well. Then, one-way ANOVA and t-test were applied along with odds ratio for risk assessment. Results: According to the results, 94% of the patients presented preoperative anxiety, with 37% developing high anxiety (VAS-A ≥ 7. Preoperative LoS > 2 days was the only significant risk factor for preoperative anxiety (odds ratio = 2.5, CI 95%, 1.3 - 5.1, P = 0.009. Besides, a positive correlation was found between anxiety level (APAISa and requirement of knowledge (APAISk. APAISa and APAISk scores were greater for surgery than for anesthesia. Moreover, the results showed that the most common anxieties resulted from the operation, waiting for surgery, not knowing what is happening, postoperative pain, awareness during anesthesia, and not awakening from anesthesia. Conclusions: APAIS and VAS-A provided a quantitative assessment of anxiety and a specific qualitative questionnaire for preoperative anxiety in cardiac surgery. According to the results, preoperative LoS > 2 days and lack of information related to surgery were the risk factors for high anxiety levels.

  9. Verbal and visual memory improve after choline supplementation in long-term total parenteral nutrition: a pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buchman, A L; Sohel, M; Brown, M; Jenden, D J; Ahn, C; Roch, M; Brawley, T L

    2001-01-01

    Previous investigations have demonstrated that choline deficiency, manifested in low plasma-free choline concentration and hepatic injury, may develop in patients who require long-term total parenteral nutrition (TPN). Preliminary studies have suggested lecithin or choline supplementation might lead to improved visual memory in the elderly and reverse abnormal neuropsychological development in children. We sought to determine if choline-supplemented TPN would lead to improvement in neuropsychological test scores in a group of adult, choline-deficient outpatients receiving TPN. Eleven subjects (8 males, 3 females) who received nightly TPN for more than 80% of their nutritional needs for at least 12 weeks before entry in the study were enrolled. Exclusion criteria included active drug abuse, mental retardation, cerebral vascular accident, head trauma, hemodialysis or peritoneal dialysis, (prothrombin time [PT] >2x control), or acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS). Patients were randomly assigned to receive their usual TPN regimen (n = 6, aged 34.0 +/- 12.6 years) over a 12-hour nightly infusion or their usual TPN regimen plus choline chloride (2 g) (n = 5, aged 37.3 +/- 7.3 years). The following neuropsychological tests were administered at baseline and after 24 weeks of choline supplementation (or placebo): Weschler Adult Intelligence Scale-Revised (WAIS-R, intellectual functioning), Weschler Memory Scale-Revised (WMS-R, two subtests, verbal and visual memory), Rey-Osterrieth Complex Figure Test (visuospatial functioning and perceptual organization), Controlled Oral Word Association Test (verbal fluency), Grooved Pegboard (manual dexterity and motor speed), California Verbal Learning Test (CVLT, rote verbal learning ability), and Trail Making Parts A & B (visual scanning, psychomotor speed and set shifting). Scores were reported in terms of standard scores including z scores and percentile ranks. Mean absolute changes in raw scores were compared between groups

  10. [Sleep polygraphy: diagnostic value in depressive pseudo-dementia. Attempt to improve visual scoring by digital periodic analysis].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohl, F S; Pringuey, D; Cherikh, F; Belugou, J L; Cherrey, C

    2000-01-01

    Pseudo depressive dementia is a common pathology for elderly patients. Classically, it is said that depression is taking the mask of dementia, but very often deterioration and depression are present at the same time. Sleep EEG can help the clinician to differentiate dementia and depression in pseudo depressive dementia. Slow Wave Sleep (SWS) is a good indicator of deterioration process. We tried to improve the sleep recording and analysis and our ability to differentiate SWS in this indication. We use a portable digital recording material (Hypnotrace). The signal is analysed by the association of a visual standard method to Digital Periodic Analysis (DPA) which is very sensitive to SWS. The visual analysis gives informations about the macroarchitecture of the night. The Digital Periodic Analysis gives at any moment the value of the wave frequency and thus informations about the microarchitecture. Our hypothesis is that this association helps to better recognise SWS and thus improves sleep EEG as a diagnostic tool in this indication. 23 inpatients meeting both the criteria for major depression and dementia (DSM IV) have been recorded during two nights after 15 days of wash out and before antidepressant treatment. The recordings are analysed with the visual standard method and with the help of DPA. The patients are evaluated every 15 days during two months in order to define three groups based on the clinical evolution. The scoring with DPA is more sensitive to Slow Wave Sleep, particularly for the patients with good clinical evolution (with the strongest depressive component). Thus, this method could be a good diagnostic tool to differentiate dementia and depression in pseudo depressive dementia.

  11. Improving mitochondrial function significantly reduces metabolic, visual, motor and cognitive decline in aged Drosophila melanogaster.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weinrich, Tobias W; Coyne, Ariathney; Salt, Thomas E; Hogg, Christopher; Jeffery, Glen

    2017-12-01

    Mitochondria play a major role in aging. Over time, mutations accumulate in mitochondrial DNA leading to reduced adenosine triphosphate (ATP) production and increased production of damaging reactive oxygen species. If cells fail to cope, they die. Reduced ATP will result in declining cellular membrane potentials leading to reduced central nervous system function. However, aged mitochondrial function is improved by long wavelength light (670 nm) absorbed by cytochrome c oxidase in mitochondrial respiration. In Drosophila, lifelong 670-nm exposure extends lifespan and improves aged mobility. Here, we ask if improved mitochondrial metabolism can reduce functional senescence in metabolism, sensory, locomotor, and cognitive abilities in old flies exposed to 670 nm daily for 1 week. Exposure significantly increased cytochrome c oxidase activity, whole body energy storage, ATP and mitochondrial DNA content, and reduced reactive oxygen species. Retinal function and memory were also significantly improved to levels found in 2-week-old flies. Mobility improved by 60%. The mode of action is likely related to improved energy homeostasis increasing ATP availability for ionic ATPases critical for maintenance of neuronal membrane potentials. 670-nm light exposure may be a simple route for resolving problems of aging. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Data Driven Quality Improvement of Health Professions Education: Design and Development of CLUE - An Interactive Curriculum Data Visualization Tool.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Canning, Claire Ann; Loe, Alan; Cockett, Kathryn Jane; Gagnon, Paul; Zary, Nabil

    2017-01-01

    Curriculum Mapping and dynamic visualization is quickly becoming an integral aspect of quality improvement in support of innovations which drive curriculum quality assurance processes in medical education. CLUE (Curriculum Explorer) a highly interactive, engaging and independent platform was developed to support curriculum transparency, enhance student engagement, and enable granular search and display. Reflecting a design based approach to meet the needs of the school's varied stakeholders, CLUE employs an iterative and reflective approach to drive the evolution of its platform, as it seeks to accommodate the ever-changing needs of our stakeholders in the fast pace world of medicine and medical education today. CLUE exists independent of institutional systems and in this way, is uniquely positioned to deliver a data driven quality improvement resource, easily adaptable for use by any member of our health care professions.

  13. Real-time visual biofeedback to improve therapy compliance after total hip arthroplasty: A pilot randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raaben, Marco; Vogely, H Charles; Blokhuis, Taco J

    2018-01-31

    Previous studies have shown limited therapy compliance in weight-bearing in patients following total hip arthroplasty. The purpose of this pilot RCT is to determine the immediate and late effect of real-time, visual biofeedback on weight-bearing during rehabilitation after THA in elderly. 24 participants who underwent THA were randomized to either the control or the intervention group. The intervention group received real-time, visual biofeedback on weight-bearing during training with the physical therapist during hospitalization and at twelve weeks follow up. Without biofeedback, therapy compliance was limited. Significant improvement in peak load was found in the intervention group in the early postoperative phase. In contrast to the control group, the peak load at twelve weeks was significantly higher in the intervention group compared to the pre-operative peak load, indicating a lasting effect of early biofeedback. Other gait parameters were not significantly different in the early postoperative phase. In the intervention group a longer walking distance was observed and the use of walking aids was reduced at twelve weeks. Biofeedback systems could be promising to improve outcomes and reduce costs in future rehabilitation programs after THA. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. POSSIBILITY OF IMPROVING EXISTING STANDARDS AND METHODOLOGIES FOR AUDITING INFORMATION SYSTEMS TO PROVIDE E-GOVERNMENT SERVICES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Евгений Геннадьевич Панкратов

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available This article analyzes the existing methods of e-government systems audit, their shortcomings are examined.  The approaches to improve existing techniques and adapt them to the specific characteristics of e-government systems are suggested. The paper describes the methodology, providing possibilities of integrated assessment of information systems. This methodology uses systems maturity models and can be used in the construction of e-government rankings, as well as in the audit of their implementation process. Maturity models are based on COBIT, COSO methodologies and models of e-government, developed by the relevant committee of the UN. The methodology was tested during the audit of information systems involved in the payment of temporary disability benefits. The audit was carried out during analysis of the outcome of the pilot project for the abolition of the principle of crediting payments for disability benefits.DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.12731/2218-7405-2014-2-5

  15. Prefrontal Neurons Represent Motion Signals from Across the Visual Field But for Memory-Guided Comparisons Depend on Neurons Providing These Signals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wimmer, Klaus; Spinelli, Philip; Pasternak, Tatiana

    2016-09-07

    Visual decisions often involve comparisons of sequential stimuli that can appear at any location in the visual field. The lateral prefrontal cortex (LPFC) in nonhuman primates, shown to play an important role in such comparisons, receives information about contralateral stimuli directly from sensory neurons in the same hemisphere, and about ipsilateral stimuli indirectly from neurons in the opposite hemisphere. This asymmetry of sensory inputs into the LPFC poses the question of whether and how its neurons incorporate sensory information arriving from the two hemispheres during memory-guided comparisons of visual motion. We found that, although responses of individual LPFC neurons to contralateral stimuli were stronger and emerged 40 ms earlier, they carried remarkably similar signals about motion direction in the two hemifields, with comparable direction selectivity and similar direction preferences. This similarity was also apparent around the time of the comparison between the current and remembered stimulus because both ipsilateral and contralateral responses showed similar signals reflecting the remembered direction. However, despite availability in the LPFC of motion information from across the visual field, these "comparison effects" required for the comparison stimuli to appear at the same retinal location. This strict dependence on spatial overlap of the comparison stimuli suggests participation of neurons with localized receptive fields in the comparison process. These results suggest that while LPFC incorporates many key aspects of the information arriving from sensory neurons residing in opposite hemispheres, it continues relying on the interactions with these neurons at the time of generating signals leading to successful perceptual decisions. Visual decisions often involve comparisons of sequential visual motion that can appear at any location in the visual field. We show that during such comparisons, the lateral prefrontal cortex (LPFC) contains

  16. Providing supplemental milk to piglets preweaning improves the growth but not survival of gilt progeny compared with sow progeny.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Y J; Collins, A M; Smits, R J; Thomson, P C; Holyoake, P K

    2012-12-01

    Gilt progeny have lighter weaning weights and greater postweaning medication and mortality rates compared with the progeny of older parity sows. Because weaning weight has been positively correlated with postweaning survival, this study aimed to determine whether the provision of supplemental milk preweaning could improve weaning weight and subsequent weights as well as postweaning survival of gilt progeny. The study was replicated in summer and winter as the effects of supplemental milk were expected to vary with season. The progeny of 80 gilts (parity 0) and 80 sows (parity 2 to 5) were allocated to both treatments: with or without supplemental milk in these 2 seasons with 5 sheds/season. Litter size was standardized (10 to 11 piglets) and each piglet was weighed at birth, d 21, weaning (4 wk), and 10 wk of age. Medications and mortalities were recorded both preweaning and postweaning. Pigs were housed within treatment groups postweaning, and ADFI and G:F were measured. Gilt progeny were 200 g lighter at birth in both replicates (P gilt and sow progeny by 800 g in summer (P gilts or sows (P > 0.05). Supplemental milk disappearance (the daily difference between the volume of milk provided and the residue left in the drinker) was greater in summer than winter (by 130 mL/piglet d(-1); P gilt progeny reached or exceeded that of nonsupplemented sow progeny. Gilt progeny had greater postweaning mortality (2.6%) and medication rates (6.2%) than sow progeny (1 and 2.2%, respectively; both P Gilt progeny also had less postweaning ADFI than sow progeny in winter (528 and 636 g, respectively; P 0.05). The hypothesis that supplemental milk provision did increase gilt progeny weaning weight was supported (especially in summer) but the supplementation had no effect on postweaning weights and survival. Efforts to improve gilt progeny postweaning growth and survival need to be aimed at improving health and immunity, not just weaning weight.

  17. Improved Visualization of Vertebrate Nuclear Pore Complexes by Field Emission Scanning Electron Microscopy

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Shaulov, Lihi; Harel, Amnon

    2012-01-01

    Field emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM) can provide high-resolution three-dimensional surface imaging of many biological structures, including nuclear envelopes and nuclear pore complexes (NPCs...

  18. Exploring interoperability: The advancements and challenges of improving data discovery, access, and visualization of scientific data through the NOAA Earth Information System (NEIS). (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stewart, J.; Lynge, J.; Hackathorn, E.; MacDermaid, C.; Pierce, R.; Smith, J.

    2013-12-01

    Interoperability is a complex subject and often leads to different definitions in different environments. An interoperable framework of web services can improve the user experience by providing an interface for interaction with data regardless of it's format or physical location. This in itself improves accessibility to data, fosters data exploration and use, and provides a framework for new tools and applications. With an interoperable system you have: -- Data ready for action. Services model facilitates agile response to events. Services can be combined or reused quickly, upgraded or modified independently. -- Any data available through an interoperable framework can be operated on or combined with other data. Integrating standardized formats and access. -- New and existing systems have access to wide variety of data. Any new data added is easily incorporated with minimal changes required. The possibilities are limitless. The NOAA Earth Information System (NEIS) at the Earth System Research Laboratory (ESRL) is continuing research into an interoperable framework of layered services designed to facilitate the discovery, access, integration, visualization, and understanding of all NOAA (past, present, and future) data. An underlying philosophy of NEIS is to take advantage of existing off-the-shelf technologies and standards to minimize development of custom code allowing everyone to take advantage of the framework to meet these goals above. This framework, while built by NOAA are not limited to NOAA data or applications. Any other data available through similar services or applications that understand these standards can work interchangeably. Two major challenges are under active research at ESRL are data discoverability and fast access to big data. This presentation will provide an update on development of NEIS, including these challenges, the findings, and recommendations on what is needed for an interoperable system, as well as ongoing research activities

  19. New approaches to provide feedback from nuclear and covariance data adjustment for effective improvement of evaluated nuclear data files

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Palmiotti, Giuseppe; Salvatores, Massimo; Hursin, Mathieu; Kodeli, Ivo; Gabrielli, Fabrizio; Hummel, Andrew

    2016-11-01

    A critical examination of the role of uncertainty assessment, target accuracies, role of integral experiment for validation and, consequently, of data adjustments methods is underway since several years at OECD-NEA, the objective being to provide criteria and practical approaches to use effectively the results of sensitivity analyses and cross section adjustments for feedback to evaluators and experimentalists in order to improve without ambiguities the knowledge of neutron cross sections, uncertainties, and correlations to be used in a wide range of applications and to meet new requirements and constraints for innovative reactor and fuel cycle system design. An approach will be described that expands as much as possible the use in the adjustment procedure of selected integral experiments that provide information on “elementary” phenomena, on separated individual physics effects related to specific isotopes or on specific energy ranges. An application to a large experimental data base has been performed and the results are discussed in the perspective of new evaluation projects like the CIELO initiative.

  20. New approaches to provide feedback from nuclear and covariance data adjustment for effective improvement of evaluated nuclear data files

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palmiotti, Giuseppe; Salvatores, Massimo; Hursin, Mathieu; Kodeli, Ivo; Gabrielli, Fabrizio; Hummel, Andrew

    2017-09-01

    A critical examination of the role of uncertainty assessment, target accuracies, role of integral experiment for validation and, consequently, of data adjustments methods is underway since several years at OECD-NEA, the objective being to provide criteria and practical approaches to use effectively the results of sensitivity analyses and cross section adjustments for feedback to evaluators and experimentalists in order to improve without ambiguities the knowledge of neutron cross sections, uncertainties, and correlations to be used in a wide range of applications and to meet new requirements and constraints for innovative reactor and fuel cycle system design. An approach will be described that expands as much as possible the use in the adjustment procedure of selected integral experiments that provide information on "elementary" phenomena, on separated individual physics effects related to specific isotopes or on specific energy ranges. An application to a large experimental data base has been performed and the results are discussed in the perspective of new evaluation projects like the CIELO initiative.

  1. Using visual aids to improve communication of risks about health: a review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Retamero, Rocio; Okan, Yasmina; Cokely, Edward T

    2012-01-01

    Recent research has shown that patients frequently experience difficulties understanding health-relevant numerical concepts. A prominent example is denominator neglect, or the tendency to pay too much attention to numerators in ratios (e.g., number of treated patients who died) with insufficient attention to denominators (e.g., overall number of treated patients). Denominator neglect can lead to inaccurate assessments of treatment risk reduction and thus can have important consequences for decisions about health. Here, we reviewed a series of studies investigating (1) different factors that can influence patients' susceptibility to denominator neglect in medical decision making--including numerical or language-related abilities; (2) the extent to which denominator neglect can be attenuated by using visual aids; and (3) a factor that moderates the effectiveness of such aids (i.e., graph literacy). The review spans probabilistic national U.S. and German samples, as well as immigrant (i.e., Polish people living in the United Kingdom) and undergraduate samples in Spain. Theoretical and prescriptive implications are discussed.

  2. Using Visual Aids to Improve Communication of Risks about Health: A Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rocio Garcia-Retamero

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Recent research has shown that patients frequently experience difficulties understanding health-relevant numerical concepts. A prominent example is denominator neglect, or the tendency to pay too much attention to numerators in ratios (e.g., number of treated patients who died with insufficient attention to denominators (e.g., overall number of treated patients. Denominator neglect can lead to inaccurate assessments of treatment risk reduction and thus can have important consequences for decisions about health. Here, we reviewed a series of studies investigating (1 different factors that can influence patients’ susceptibility to denominator neglect in medical decision making—including numerical or language-related abilities; (2 the extent to which denominator neglect can be attenuated by using visual aids; and (3 a factor that moderates the effectiveness of such aids (i.e., graph literacy. The review spans probabilistic national U.S. and German samples, as well as immigrant (i.e., Polish people living in the United Kingdom and undergraduate samples in Spain. Theoretical and prescriptive implications are discussed.

  3. Allium sativum L. Improves Visual Memory and Attention in Healthy Human Volunteers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tasnim, Sara; Haque, Parsa Sanjana; Bari, Md. Sazzadul; Hossain, Md. Monir; Islam, Sardar Mohd. Ashraful; Shahriar, Mohammad; Bhuiyan, Mohiuddin Ahmed; Bin Sayeed, Muhammad Shahdaat

    2015-01-01

    Studies have shown that Allium sativum L. (AS) protects amyloid-beta peptide-induced apoptosis, prevents oxidative insults to neurons and synapses, and thus prevent Alzheimer's disease progression in experimental animals. However, there is no experimental evidence in human regarding its putative role in memory and cognition. We have studied the effect of AS consumption by healthy human volunteers on visual memory, verbal memory, attention, and executive function in comparison to control subjects taking placebo. The study was conducted over five weeks and twenty volunteers of both genders were recruited and divided randomly into two groups: A (AS) and B (placebo). Both groups participated in the 6 computerized neuropsychological tests of the Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery (CANTAB) twice: at the beginning and after five weeks of the study. We found statistically significant difference (p 0.05) beneficial effects on verbal memory and executive function within a short period of time among the volunteers. Study for a longer period of time with patients suffering from neurodegenerative diseases might yield more relevant results regarding the potential therapeutic role of AS. PMID:26351508

  4. The Design and Development of a User-Controlled Visual Aid for Improving Students' Understanding in Introductory Statistics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaughn, Brandon K.; Wang, Pei-Yu

    2009-01-01

    The use of visual aids is expected to have a positive effect on students' learning. However, not all visual aids work equally well. A recent meta-analytic research which examined 42 studies has found that the use of animated visuals does not facilitate learning (Anglin, Vaez & Cunnincham, 2004). The failure of visual aids can be attributed to…

  5. Can a mobile app improve the quality of patient care provided by trainee doctors? Analysis of trainees' case reports.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webb, Katie; Bullock, Alison; Dimond, Rebecca; Stacey, Mark

    2016-09-21

    To explore how a medical textbook app ('iDoc') supports newly qualified doctors in providing high-quality patient care. The iDoc project, funded by the Wales Deanery, provides new doctors with an app which gives access to key medical textbooks. Participants' submitted case reports describing self-reported accounts of specific instances of app use. The size of the data set enabled analysis of a subsample of 'complex' case reports. Of the 568 case reports submitted by Foundation Year 1s (F1s)/Year 2s (F2s), 142 (25%) detailed instances of diagnostic decision-making and were identified as 'complex'. We analysed these data against the Quality Improvement (QI) Framework using thematic content analysis. Clinical settings across Wales, UK. Newly qualified doctors (2012-2014; n=114), F1 and F2. The iDoc app, powered by Dr Companion software, provided newly qualified doctors in Wales with a selection of key medical textbooks via individuals' personal smartphone. Doctors' use of the iDoc app supported 5 of the 6 QI elements: efficiency, timeliness, effectiveness, safety and patient-centredness. None of the case reports were coded to the equity element. Efficiency was the element which attracted the highest number of case report references. We propose that the QI Framework should be expanding to include 'learning' as a 7th element. Access to key medical textbooks via an app provides trusted and valuable support to newly qualified doctors during a period of transition. On the basis of these doctors' self-reported accounts, our evidence indicates that the use of the app enhances efficiency, effectiveness and timeliness of patient-care in addition consolidating a safe, patient-centred approach. We propose that there is scope to extend the QI Framework by incorporating 'learning' as a 7th element in recognition of the relationship between providing high-quality care through educational engagement. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not

  6. Using JournalMap to improve discovery and visualization of rangeland scientific knowledge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Most of the ecological research conducted around the world is tied to specific places; however, that location information is locked up in the text and figures of scientific articles in myriad forms that are not easily searchable. While access to ecological literature has improved dramatically in the...

  7. Evaluation of the potential of phase-contrast computed tomography for improved visualization of cancerous human liver tissue.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noël, Peter B; Herzen, Julia; Fingerle, Alexander A; Willner, Marian; Stockmar, Marco K; Hahn, Dieter; Settles, Marcus; Drecoll, Enken; Zanette, Irene; Weitkamp, Timm; Rummeny, Ernst J; Pfeiffer, Franz

    2013-09-01

    Phase-contrast X-ray computed tomography (PCCT) is currently investigated and developed as a potentially very interesting extension of conventional CT, and can offer several advantages for specific indications in diagnostic imaging. Current absorption-based computed tomography (CT) without the application of contrast material is limited in the detection of minor density differences in soft-tissue. The purpose of this study is to test whether PCCT can improve soft tissue contrast in healthy and tumorous human liver specimens. Two specimens of human liver (one healthy and one metastasized liver sample) were imaged with brilliant X-ray beam at the synchrotron radiation source ESRF in Grenoble, France. For correlation the same specimens were imaged with a magnetic resonance imaging system at 1.5 T. The histopathology confirmed our findings in the corresponding sections of the specimens. In the phase-contrast CT images we observed a significantly enhanced soft-tissue contrast when compared to simultaneously recorded standard absorption CT measurements. Further, we found that the pathological and morphological information in the PCCT reconstructions show significant improvement when compared to those performed on MRI. Based on matching of prominent features, a good correlation between PCCT and the histological section is demonstrated; especially the tumor capsule and the surrounding vascular structures are visible in PCCT. In addition, our study revealed the ability of PCCT to visualize the blood vessels structure in the tumorous liver without the need of any contrast agents. Grating-based PCCT significantly improves the soft-tissue contrast in ex-vivo liver specimens and holds the potential to overcome the need of contrast materials for visualization of the tumor vascularization. Copyright © 2013. Published by Elsevier GmbH.

  8. Mirror Visual Feedback Training Improves Intermanual Transfer in a Sport-Specific Task: A Comparison between Different Skill Levels

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fabian Steinberg

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Mirror training therapy is a promising tool to initiate neural plasticity and facilitate the recovery process of motor skills after diseases such as stroke or hemiparesis by improving the intermanual transfer of fine motor skills in healthy people as well as in patients. This study evaluated whether these augmented performance improvements by mirror visual feedback (MVF could be used for learning a sport-specific skill and if the effects are modulated by skill level. A sample of 39 young, healthy, and experienced basketball and handball players and 41 novices performed a stationary basketball dribble task at a mirror box in a standing position and received either MVF or direct feedback. After four training days using only the right hand, performance of both hands improved from pre- to posttest measurements. Only the left hand (untrained performance of the experienced participants receiving MVF was more pronounced than for the control group. This indicates that intermanual motor transfer can be improved by MVF in a sport-specific task. However, this effect cannot be generalized to motor learning per se since it is modulated by individuals’ skill level, a factor that might be considered in mirror therapy research.

  9. Randomized crossover trial of a pressure sensing visual feedback system to improve mask fitting in noninvasive ventilation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brill, Anne-Kathrin; Moghal, Mohammad; Morrell, Mary J; Simonds, Anita K

    2017-10-01

    A good mask fit, avoiding air leaks and pressure effects on the skin are key elements for a successful noninvasive ventilation (NIV). However, delivering practical training for NIV is challenging, and it takes time to build experience and competency. This study investigated whether a pressure sensing system with real-time visual feedback improved mask fitting. During an NIV training session, 30 healthcare professionals (14 trained in mask fitting and 16 untrained) performed two mask fittings on the same healthy volunteer in a randomized order: one using standard mask-fitting procedures and one with additional visual feedback on mask pressure on the nasal bridge. Participants were required to achieve a mask fit with low mask pressure and minimal air leak (bridge, perceived comfort of mask fit and staff- confidence were measured. Compared with standard mask fitting, a lower pressure was exerted on the nasal bridge using the feedback system (71.1 ± 17.6 mm Hg vs 63.2 ± 14.6 mm Hg, P bridge (74.5 ± 21.2 mm Hg vs 66.1 ± 17.4 mm Hg, P = 0.023 and 67 ± 12.1 mm Hg vs 60 ± 10.6 mm Hg, P = 0.002, respectively) using the feedback system and self-rated confidence increased in the untrained group. Real-time visual feedback using pressure sensing technology supported healthcare professionals during mask-fitting training, resulted in a lower pressure on the skin and better mask fit for the volunteer, with increased staff confidence. © 2017 Asian Pacific Society of Respirology.

  10. EFSA Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA); Scientific Opinion on the substantiation of health claims related to anthocyanins from Ribes nigrum L. and improvement of visual adaptation to the dark (ID 2750) pursuant to Article 13(1) of Regulation (EC) No 1924/2006

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tetens, Inge

    conclusions could be drawn for the scientific substantiation of the claim. On the basis of the data presented, the Panel concludes that a cause and effect relationship has not been established between the consumption of anthocyanins from Ribes nigrum L. and improvement of visual adaptation to the dark....... claims in relation to anthocyanins from Ribes nigrum L. and improvement of visual adaptation to the dark. The scientific substantiation is based on the information provided by the Member States in the consolidated list of Article 13 health claims and references that EFSA has received from Member States...... population. In the context of the proposed wordings, the Panel assumes that the claimed effect refers to an improvement of visual adaptation to the dark. The Panel considers that improvement of visual adaptation to the dark is a beneficial physiological effect. No human studies were provided from which...

  11. The Hispanic Clinic for Pediatric Surgery: A model to improve parent-provider communication for Hispanic pediatric surgery patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jaramillo, Joshua; Snyder, Elizabeth; Dunlap, Jonathan L; Wright, Robert; Mendoza, Fernando; Bruzoni, Matias

    2016-04-01

    preference for, and value of language concordant care. Language discordant participants reported that they desired to ask more questions but were limited by a language barrier (p=0.001). In a pediatric surgery clinic, language concordant care increases the number of patient-asked questions during a clinical visit and improves communication suggesting that discordant care is a potential source of disparities in access to information. Future efforts should focus on expanding access to language concordant providers in other surgery subspecialties as a step towards limiting disparities in surgical care for all patients. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Visual biofeedback exercises for improving body balance control after anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molka, Alicja Zyta; Lisiński, Przemysław; Huber, Juliusz

    2015-07-01

    [Purpose] To evaluate the effects of balance training after arthroscopic anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction. [Subjects and Methods] Sixteen patients (mean 33 ± 8 years old) who underwent anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction three months prior to participating in a one-month rehabilitation program. The control group included 15 people aged 34 ± 4 years. Patients' functional level was evaluated according to the Lysholm knee score, and balance quality was ascertained by static and dynamic tests. A balance platform was used to measure the center of foot pressure deflection. Two dynamic balance tests evaluated time of task execution. [Results] Lysholm knee score improved significantly after rehabilitation. Balance in the sagittal plane with eyes closed improved significantly after rehabilitation. The average velocity of center of foot pressure swing in both the frontal and sagittal planes with eyes closed differed significantly from those of controls. Execution time required for the two dynamic tests decreased significantly after rehabilitation and were significantly better than those in the controls. [Conclusion] Maintaining static balance with eyes closed is very challenging after anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction. Maintaining balance in the sagittal plane is particularly difficult. A one-month rehabilitation program partially improves static and dynamic balance.

  13. Attention Cueing and Activity Equally Reduce False Alarm Rate in Visual-Auditory Associative Learning through Improving Memory.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammad-Ali Nikouei Mahani

    Full Text Available In our daily life, we continually exploit already learned multisensory associations and form new ones when facing novel situations. Improving our associative learning results in higher cognitive capabilities. We experimentally and computationally studied the learning performance of healthy subjects in a visual-auditory sensory associative learning task across active learning, attention cueing learning, and passive learning modes. According to our results, the learning mode had no significant effect on learning association of congruent pairs. In addition, subjects' performance in learning congruent samples was not correlated with their vigilance score. Nevertheless, vigilance score was significantly correlated with the learning performance of the non-congruent pairs. Moreover, in the last block of the passive learning mode, subjects significantly made more mistakes in taking non-congruent pairs as associated and consciously reported lower confidence. These results indicate that attention and activity equally enhanced visual-auditory associative learning for non-congruent pairs, while false alarm rate in the passive learning mode did not decrease after the second block. We investigated the cause of higher false alarm rate in the passive learning mode by using a computational model, composed of a reinforcement learning module and a memory-decay module. The results suggest that the higher rate of memory decay is the source of making more mistakes and reporting lower confidence in non-congruent pairs in the passive learning mode.

  14. Image quality improvement in adaptive optics scanning laser ophthalmoscopy assisted capillary visualization using B-spline-based elastic image registration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uji, Akihito; Ooto, Sotaro; Hangai, Masanori; Arichika, Shigeta; Yoshimura, Nagahisa

    2013-01-01

    To investigate the effect of B-spline-based elastic image registration on adaptive optics scanning laser ophthalmoscopy (AO-SLO)-assisted capillary visualization. AO-SLO videos were acquired from parafoveal areas in the eyes of healthy subjects and patients with various diseases. After nonlinear image registration, the image quality of capillary images constructed from AO-SLO videos using motion contrast enhancement was compared before and after B-spline-based elastic (nonlinear) image registration performed using ImageJ. For objective comparison of image quality, contrast-to-noise ratios (CNRS) for vessel images were calculated. For subjective comparison, experienced ophthalmologists ranked images on a 5-point scale. All AO-SLO videos were successfully stabilized by elastic image registration. CNR was significantly higher in capillary images stabilized by elastic image registration than in those stabilized without registration. The average ratio of CNR in images with elastic image registration to CNR in images without elastic image registration was 2.10 ± 1.73, with no significant difference in the ratio between patients and healthy subjects. Improvement of image quality was also supported by expert comparison. Use of B-spline-based elastic image registration in AO-SLO-assisted capillary visualization was effective for enhancing image quality both objectively and subjectively.

  15. The Geology Robot: A Collaborative Effort for improving Outcrop Visualization and Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fredrick, K. C.; Valoski, M. P.; Rodi, A. F.

    2010-12-01

    Geologic mapping is one of the most important skills a geologist will attempt to master during their education and well into their career. Mapping requires the ability to identify rocks and minerals, an understanding of geologic principles of history, deformation, and tectonics, as well as the ability to access the geology in question. As a student, the first two items are cognitive, and generally gained through education and experience. However, the third involves external, especially physical factors, often outside of a student’s control. Mapping and outcrop analysis can be difficult in areas of especially varied terrain depending on one’s will and physical ability. In our area of southwestern Pennsylvania, steep terrain and dense vegetation dominate the landscape. Road cuts are often the only options for identifying local bedrock. Many outcrops are avoided based on their sheer size or integrity, which can pose risks of physical harm. In order to address some of these concerns, we have developed a robot, able to scale and image rocks in the vertical. The principle behind the robot’s capabilities is to reach steep or over-steep cliff faces to view and measure rock type and stratigraphic relationships. The robot carries a movable camera, allowing the operator a clear view of the rock face in an area that he or she wouldn’t normally be able to access. The robot is suspended from climbing rope over the cliff edge and connected to a power source and video monitor. The current prototype is operated with a handheld remote control including independent camera manipulation. Future development may include detachable wheel tracks for navigating less than vertical surfaces and a coring bit for sampling. Potential uses exist beyond visualization for classroom instruction, including detailed mapping, evaluating geological engineering challenges, viewing down-well conditions in large-bore wells, etc. We believe this robot will allow students (and possibly professionals

  16. Modeling the Ecosystem Services Provided by Trees in Urban Ecosystems: Using Biome-BGC to Improve i-Tree Eco

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Molly E.; McGroddy, Megan; Spence, Caitlin; Flake, Leah; Sarfraz, Amna; Nowak, David J.; Milesi, Cristina

    2012-01-01

    As the world becomes increasingly urban, the need to quantify the effect of trees in urban environments on energy usage, air pollution, local climate and nutrient run-off has increased. By identifying, quantifying and valuing the ecological activity that provides services in urban areas, stronger policies and improved quality of life for urban residents can be obtained. Here we focus on two radically different models that can be used to characterize urban forests. The i-Tree Eco model (formerly UFORE model) quantifies ecosystem services (e.g., air pollution removal, carbon storage) and values derived from urban trees based on field measurements of trees and local ancillary data sets. Biome-BGC (Biome BioGeoChemistry) is used to simulate the fluxes and storage of carbon, water, and nitrogen in natural environments. This paper compares i-Tree Eco's methods to those of Biome-BGC, which estimates the fluxes and storage of energy, carbon, water and nitrogen for vegetation and soil components of the ecosystem. We describe the two models and their differences in the way they calculate similar properties, with a focus on carbon and nitrogen. Finally, we discuss the implications of further integration of these two communities for land managers such as those in Maryland.

  17. Parallel experimental design and multivariate analysis provides efficient screening of cell culture media supplements to improve biosimilar product quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brühlmann, David; Sokolov, Michael; Butté, Alessandro; Sauer, Markus; Hemberger, Jürgen; Souquet, Jonathan; Broly, Hervé; Jordan, Martin

    2017-07-01

    Rational and high-throughput optimization of mammalian cell culture media has a great potential to modulate recombinant protein product quality. We present a process design method based on parallel design-of-experiment (DoE) of CHO fed-batch cultures in 96-deepwell plates to modulate monoclonal antibody (mAb) glycosylation using medium supplements. To reduce the risk of losing valuable information in an intricate joint screening, 17 compounds were separated into five different groups, considering their mode of biological action. The concentration ranges of the medium supplements were defined according to information encountered in the literature and in-house experience. The screening experiments produced wide glycosylation pattern ranges. Multivariate analysis including principal component analysis and decision trees was used to select the best performing glycosylation modulators. Subsequent D-optimal quadratic design with four factors (three promising compounds and temperature shift) in shake tubes confirmed the outcome of the selection process and provided a solid basis for sequential process development at a larger scale. The glycosylation profile with respect to the specifications for biosimilarity was greatly improved in shake tube experiments: 75% of the conditions were equally close or closer to the specifications for biosimilarity than the best 25% in 96-deepwell plates. Biotechnol. Bioeng. 2017;114: 1448-1458. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  18. Bariatric Surgery Prior to Total Joint Arthroplasty May Not Provide Dramatic Improvements In Post Arthroplasty Surgical Outcomes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paxton, Elizabeth W.; Fisher, David; Li, Robert A.; Barber, Thomas C.; Singh, Jasvinder A.

    2014-01-01

    This study compared the total joint arthroplasty (TJA) surgical outcomes of patients who had bariatric surgery prior to TJA to TJA patients who were candidates but did not have bariatric surgery. Patients were retrospectively grouped into: Group 1 (n=69), those with bariatric surgery >2 years prior to TJA, Group 2 (n=102), those with surgery within 2 years of TJA, and Group 3 (n=11,032), those without bariatric surgery. In Group 1, 2.9% (95%CI 0.0–6.9%) had complications within 1 year compared to 5.9% (95%CI 1.3–10.4%) in Group 2, and 4.1% (95%CI 3.8–4.5%) in Group 3. 90-day readmission (7.2%, 95%CI 1.1–13.4%) and revision density (3.4/100 years of observation) was highest in Group 1. Bariatric surgery prior to TJA may not provide dramatic improvements in post-operative TJA surgical outcomes. PMID:24674730

  19. Glucose improves object-location binding in visual-spatial working memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stollery, Brian; Christian, Leonie

    2016-02-01

    There is evidence that glucose temporarily enhances cognition and that processes dependent on the hippocampus may be particularly sensitive. As the hippocampus plays a key role in binding processes, we examined the influence of glucose on memory for object-location bindings. This study aims to study how glucose modifies performance on an object-location memory task, a task that draws heavily on hippocampal function. Thirty-one participants received 30 g glucose or placebo in a single 1-h session. After seeing between 3 and 10 objects (words or shapes) at different locations in a 9 × 9 matrix, participants attempted to immediately reproduce the display on a blank 9 × 9 matrix. Blood glucose was measured before drink ingestion, mid-way through the session, and at the end of the session. Glucose significantly improves object-location binding (d = 1.08) and location memory (d = 0.83), but not object memory (d = 0.51). Increasing working memory load impairs object memory and object-location binding, and word-location binding is more successful than shape-location binding, but the glucose improvement is robust across all difficulty manipulations. Within the glucose group, higher levels of circulating glucose are correlated with better binding memory and remembering the locations of successfully recalled objects. The glucose improvements identified are consistent with a facilitative impact on hippocampal function. The findings are discussed in the context of the relationship between cognitive processes, hippocampal function, and the implications for glucose's mode of action.

  20. FlyTact : A tactile display improves a helicopter pilot's landing performance in degraded visual environments

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jansen, C.; Wennemers, A.S.; Vos, W.K.; Groen, E.L.

    2008-01-01

    Helicopter landings are more challenging in 'brownout' conditions, in which sand and dust is stirred up by the rotary wing aircraft, obscuring visibility. Safe brownout landings require new sensor and display technologies to provide the pilot with information on helicopter motion. In this respect

  1. Premedication with erythromycin improves endoscopic visualization of the gastric mucosa in patients with subtotal gastrectomy: a prospective, randomized, controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jun, Byoung Yeon; Choi, Myung-Gyu; Lee, Jong Yul; Baeg, Myong-Ki; Moon, Sung Jin; Lim, Chul-Hyun; Kim, Jin Su; Cho, Yu Kyung; Lee, In Seok; Kim, Sang Woo; Choi, Kyu Yong

    2014-05-01

    Food residue in the remnant stomach after subtotal gastrectomy (STG) interferes with endoscopic observation. We investigated whether intravenous erythromycin improves gastric mucosa visualization in patients with STG. This study was conducted from April 2012 to October 2012 as a double-blinded, placebo-controlled, randomized trial. Patients who received STG with complete resection (stage T1-2N0M0) were included. Exclusion criteria were diabetes mellitus, neurologic disease, myopathy, recent viral enteritis history, concomitant therapy influencing gastrointestinal motility and severe comorbidity. Patients were instructed to consume a soft diet for dinner between 1800 and 2000 h, and endoscopies were performed between 0900 and 1200 h. Patients were assigned randomly to receive either erythromycin (125 mg in normal saline 50 cc) or placebo saline. The endoscopy was performed 15 min after infusion. Grade of residual food was rated as follows: G0, no residual food; G1, a small amount of residual food; G2, a moderate amount of residual food; G3, a moderate amount of residual food that hinders observation of the entire surface, even with body rolling; G4, a great amount of residual food such that endoscopic observation is impossible. When good visibility was defined as G0+G1, visibility was significantly better in the erythromycin group (61 + 19 %) than in the placebo group (38 + 12 %, p erythromycin response in the erythromycin group (n = 56) was elapsed time since surgery. Adverse effects included nausea [11 (19.7 %)] and vomiting [1 (1.8 %)] in the erythromycin group and vomiting [3 (5.2 %)] in the placebo group. However, they were transient and tolerable. Premedication with erythromycin improves mucosal visualization during endoscopy in patients with STG. ( NCT01659619).

  2. Visual Analogue Scale for Anxiety and Amsterdam Preoperative Anxiety Scale Provide a Simple and Reliable Measurement of Preoperative Anxiety in Patients Undergoing Cardiac Surgery

    OpenAIRE

    Joaquín Hernández-Palazón; Diego Fuentes-García; Luis Falcón-Araña; Antonio Rodríguez-Ribó; Carlos García-Palenciano; María José Roca-Calvo

    2015-01-01

    Background: Anxiety is an emotional state characterized by apprehension and fear resulting from anticipation of a threatening event. Objectives: The present study aimed to analyze the incidence and level of preoperative anxiety in the patients scheduled for cardiac surgery by using a Visual Analogue Scale for Anxiety (VAS-A) and Amsterdam Preoperative Anxiety and Information Scale (APAIS) and to identify the influencing clinical factors. Patients and Methods: This prospective, longitu...

  3. Visual input enhancement via essay coding results in deaf learners' long-term retention of improved English grammatical knowledge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berent, Gerald P; Kelly, Ronald R; Schmitz, Kathryn L; Kenney, Patricia

    2009-01-01

    This study explored the efficacy of visual input enhancement, specifically essay enhancement, for facilitating deaf college students' improvement in English grammatical knowledge. Results documented students' significant improvement immediately after a 10-week instructional intervention, a replication of recent research. Additionally, the results of delayed assessment documented students' significant retention of that improvement five and a half months beyond the instructional intervention period. Essay enhancement served to highlight, via a coding procedure, students' successful and unsuccessful production of discourse-required target grammatical structures. The procedure converted students' written communicative output into enhanced input for inducing noticing of grammatical form and, through essay revision, establishing form-meaning connections leading to acquisition. With its optimal design characteristics supported by theoretical and empirical research, essay enhancement is a highly effective methodology that can be easily implemented as primary or supplementary English instruction for deaf students. The results of this study hold great promise for facilitating deaf students' English language and literacy development and have broad implications for second-language research, teaching, and learning.

  4. Variable phase dark-field contrast--a variant illumination technique for improved visualizations of transparent specimens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piper, Timm; Piper, Jörg

    2012-04-01

    Variable phase dark-field contrast has been developed as an illumination technique in light microscopy, which promises significant improvements and a higher variability in imaging of several transparent specimens. In this method, a phase contrast image is optically superimposed on a dark-field image so that a partial image based on the principal zeroth-order maximum (phase contrast) interferes with an image that is based on the secondary maxima (dark field). The background brightness and character of the resulting image can be continuously modulated from a phase-contrast-dominated to a dark-field-dominated character. The condenser aperture diaphragm can be used for modulations of the image's appearance. Specimens can either be illuminated concentrically or obliquely (eccentrically) when parts of the illuminating light beams are covered and blocked. Moreover, a bright-field-like partial image can be added. In this way, the illumination can be optimally adjusted to the specific properties of the specimen. The techniques described can lead to improved visual information especially in biological specimens consisting of phase structures and additional light-absorbing or -reflecting components. Moreover, the specimen's three-dimensionality can be accentuated with improved clarity because the illuminating light beams associated with phase contrast and dark field run to the specimen at different angles of incidence.

  5. Reducing Short-Wavelength Blue Light in Dry Eye Patients with Unstable Tear Film Improves Performance on Tests of Visual Acuity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Minako Kaido

    Full Text Available To investigate whether suppression of blue light can improve visual function in patients with short tear break up time (BUT dry eye (DE.Twenty-two patients with short BUT DE (10 men, 12 women; mean age, 32.4 ± 6.4 years; age range, 23-43 years and 18 healthy controls (10 men, 8 women; mean age, 30.1 ± 7.4 years; age range, 20-49 years underwent functional visual acuity (VA examinations with and without wearing eyeglasses with 50% blue light blocked lenses. The functional VA parameters were starting VA, functional VA, and visual maintenance ratio.The baseline mean values (logarithm of the minimum angle of resolution, logMAR of functional VA and the visual maintenance ratio were significantly worse in the DE patients than in the controls (P 0.05. The DE patients had significant improvement in mean functional VA and visual maintenance ratio while wearing the glasses (P 0.05.Protecting the eyes from short-wavelength blue light may help to ameliorate visual impairment associated with tear instability in patients with DE. This finding represents a new concept, which is that the blue light exposure might be harmful to visual function in patients with short BUT DE.

  6. Improving Video Segmentation by Fusing Depth Cues and the Visual Background Extractor (ViBe Algorithm

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaoqin Zhou

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Depth-sensing technology has led to broad applications of inexpensive depth cameras that can capture human motion and scenes in three-dimensional space. Background subtraction algorithms can be improved by fusing color and depth cues, thereby allowing many issues encountered in classical color segmentation to be solved. In this paper, we propose a new fusion method that combines depth and color information for foreground segmentation based on an advanced color-based algorithm. First, a background model and a depth model are developed. Then, based on these models, we propose a new updating strategy that can eliminate ghosting and black shadows almost completely. Extensive experiments have been performed to compare the proposed algorithm with other, conventional RGB-D (Red-Green-Blue and Depth algorithms. The experimental results suggest that our method extracts foregrounds with higher effectiveness and efficiency.

  7. Photobiomodulation reduces drusen volume and improves visual acuity and contrast sensitivity in dry age-related macular degeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merry, Graham F; Munk, Marion R; Dotson, Robert S; Walker, Michael G; Devenyi, Robert G

    2017-06-01

    To evaluate the efficacy of photobiomodulation (PBM) treatment for patients with dry age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Assessments on 42 eyes with dry AMD (age related eye disease study (AREDS) 2-4) were conducted. Multiwavelength light emitting diode (LED) light comprising of yellow (590 nm), red (670 nm) and near-infrared (790 nm) bandwidths was applied to subjects' eyes for a treatment course of 3 weeks. Outcome measures were changes in best-corrected visual acuity (BCVA), contrast sensitivity (CS), drusen volume and central drusen thickness. Significant improvement in mean BCVA of 5.90 letters (p < 0.001) was seen on completion of the 3-week treatment and 5.14 letters (p < 0.001) after 3 months. Contrast sensitivity improved significantly (log unit improvement of 0.11 (p = 0.02) at 3 weeks and 3 months (log unit improvement of 0.16 (p = 0.02) at three cycles per degree. Drusen volume decreased by 0.024 mm 3 (p < 0.001) and central drusen thickness was significantly reduced by a mean of 3.78 μm (p < 0.001), while overall central retinal thickness and retinal volume remained stable. This is the first study demonstrating improvements in functional and anatomical outcomes in dry AMD subjects with PBM therapy. These findings corroborate an earlier pilot study that looked at functional outcome measures. The addition of anatomical evidence contributes to the basis for further development of a non-invasive PBM treatment for dry AMD. © 2016 The Authors. Acta Ophthalmologica published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of Acta Ophthalmologica Scandinavica Foundation.

  8. Improving communication when seeking informed consent: a randomised controlled study of a computer-based method for providing information to prospective clinical trial participants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karunaratne, Asuntha S; Korenman, Stanley G; Thomas, Samantha L; Myles, Paul S; Komesaroff, Paul A

    2010-04-05

    To assess the efficacy, with respect to participant understanding of information, of a computer-based approach to communication about complex, technical issues that commonly arise when seeking informed consent for clinical research trials. An open, randomised controlled study of 60 patients with diabetes mellitus, aged 27-70 years, recruited between August 2006 and October 2007 from the Department of Diabetes and Endocrinology at the Alfred Hospital and Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes Institute, Melbourne. Participants were asked to read information about a mock study via a computer-based presentation (n = 30) or a conventional paper-based information statement (n = 30). The computer-based presentation contained visual aids, including diagrams, video, hyperlinks and quiz pages. Understanding of information as assessed by quantitative and qualitative means. Assessment scores used to measure level of understanding were significantly higher in the group that completed the computer-based task than the group that completed the paper-based task (82% v 73%; P = 0.005). More participants in the group that completed the computer-based task expressed interest in taking part in the mock study (23 v 17 participants; P = 0.01). Most participants from both groups preferred the idea of a computer-based presentation to the paper-based statement (21 in the computer-based task group, 18 in the paper-based task group). A computer-based method of providing information may help overcome existing deficiencies in communication about clinical research, and may reduce costs and improve efficiency in recruiting participants for clinical trials.

  9. Action video games improve reading abilities and visual-to-auditory attentional shifting in English-speaking children with dyslexia

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Sandro Franceschini; Piergiorgio Trevisan; Luca Ronconi; Sara Bertoni; Susan Colmar; Kit Double; Andrea Facoetti; Simone Gori

    2017-01-01

    .... In our study, we tested reading skills and phonological working memory, visuo-spatial attention, auditory, visual and audio-visual stimuli localization, and cross-sensory attentional shifting in two...

  10. Undergraduate medical textbooks do not provide adequate information on intravenous fluid therapy: a systematic survey and suggestions for improvement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Powell, Arfon G M T; Paterson-Brown, Simon; Drummond, Gordon B

    2014-02-20

    Inappropriate prescribing of intravenous (IV) fluid, particularly 0.9% sodium chloride, causes post-operative complications. Fluid prescription is often left to junior medical staff and is frequently poorly managed. One reason for poor intravenous fluid prescribing practices could be inadequate coverage of this topic in the textbooks that are used. We formulated a comprehensive set of topics, related to important common clinical situations involving IV fluid therapy, (routine fluid replacement, fluid loss, fluids overload) to assess the adequacy of textbooks in common use. We assessed 29 medical textbooks widely available to students in the UK, scoring the presence of information provided by each book on each of the topics. The scores indicated how fully the topics were considered: not at all, partly, and adequately. No attempt was made to judge the quality of the information, because there is no consensus on these topics. The maximum score that a book could achieve was 52. Three of the topics we chose were not considered by any of the books. Discounting these topics as "too esoteric", the maximum possible score became 46. One textbook gained a score of 45, but the general score was poor (median 11, quartiles 4, 21). In particular, coverage of routine postoperative management was inadequate. Textbooks for undergraduates cover the topic of intravenous therapy badly, which may partly explain the poor knowledge and performance of junior doctors in this important field. Systematic revision of current textbooks might improve knowledge and practice by junior doctors. Careful definition of the remit and content of textbooks should be applied more widely to ensure quality and "fitness for purpose", and avoid omission of vital knowledge.

  11. Sun protection provided by regulation school uniforms in Australian schools: an opportunity to improve personal sun protection during childhood.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turner, Denise; Harrison, Simone L

    2014-01-01

    Childhood sun exposure is linked to excessive pigmented mole development and melanoma risk. Clothing provides a physical barrier, protecting skin from ultraviolet radiation (UVR). Extending sleeves to elbow length and shorts to knee length has been shown to significantly reduce mole acquisition in preschoolers from tropical Queensland. We used publicly available uniform images and guidelines from primary schools in Townsville (latitude 19.25°S, n = 43 schools), Cairns (16.87°S, n = 46) and the Atherton Tablelands (17.26°S, n = 23) in tropical Australia to objectively determine the body surface proportion covered by regulation school uniforms. Uniforms of nongovernment, large (≥800 students), urban, educationally advantaged schools with comprehensive sun protection policies covered more skin than those of government schools (63.2% vs 62.0%; P schools (63.4% vs 62.3%; P = 0.009), rural (62.7% vs 61.9%; P = 0.002) and educationally disadvantaged schools (62.8% vs 62.3%; P school uniforms covered identical body surface proportions (62.4%, P = 0.084). Although wearing regulation school uniforms is mandatory at most Australian primary schools, this opportunity to improve children's sun protection is largely overlooked. Recent evidence suggests that even encouraging minor alterations to school uniforms (e.g. slightly longer sleeves/dresses/skirts/shorts) to increase skin coverage may reduce mole acquisition and melanoma risk, especially in high-risk populations. © 2014 The American Society of Photobiology.

  12. Educating early childhood care and education providers to improve knowledge and attitudes about reporting child maltreatment: A randomized controlled trial.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ben Mathews

    Full Text Available Early childhood care and education providers (CCPs work with over 7 million young children. These children are vulnerable to physical, sexual and emotional abuse, and neglect. However, CCPs make less than 1% of all reports of suspected child abuse and neglect that are made to child protective services. CCPs are therefore an untapped resource in the public health response to child maltreatment. However, their knowledge and attitudes about duties to report child maltreatment are poorly understood. Moreover, no rigorous research has tested whether their knowledge and attitudes about reporting child maltreatment can be improved. These gaps in knowledge are important because knowledge of the duty and positive attitudes towards it produce more effective reporting, and little evidence exists about how to enhance cognitive and affective attributes. Using the CONSORT approach, we report a single-blind test-retest randomized controlled trial evaluating iLook Out for Child Abuse, a customized online educational intervention for CCPs to increase knowledge and attitudes towards the reporting duty. 762 participants were randomized with results analyzed for 741 participants (372 in the intervention group; 369 in the control. Knowledge of the reporting duty increased in the intervention group from 13.54 to 16.19 out of 21 (2.65 increase, 95% CI: (2.37, 2.93; large effect size 0.95, p < 0.001; the control group remained stable, moving from 13.54 to 13.59 (0.05 increase, 95% CI: (-0.12, 0.22; negligible effect size 0.03, p = 0.684. Attitudes were enhanced on all 13 items for the intervention group, remaining stable in the control, with significant differences between groups on all items (p < 0.05. Gains were largely sustained at four month follow-up. Findings support education for CCPs and other professions. Future research should also explore effects of education on reporting behavior.US National Institutes of Health NCT02225301.

  13. Non-dental primary care providers? views on challenges in providing oral health services and strategies to improve oral health in Australian rural and remote communities: a qualitative study

    OpenAIRE

    Barnett, Tony; Hoang, Ha; Stuart, Jackie; Crocombe, Len

    2015-01-01

    Objectives To investigate the challenges of providing oral health advice/treatment as experienced by non-dental primary care providers in rural and remote areas with no resident dentist, and their views on ways in which oral health and oral health services could be improved for their communities. Design Qualitative study with semistructured interviews and thematic analysis. Setting Four remote communities in outback Queensland, Australia. Participants 35 primary care providers who had experie...

  14. MiL-FISH: Multilabeled Oligonucleotides for Fluorescence In Situ Hybridization Improve Visualization of Bacterial Cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kleiner, Manuel; Wetzel, Silke; Liebeke, Manuel; Dubilier, Nicole

    2015-01-01

    Fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) has become a vital tool for environmental and medical microbiology and is commonly used for the identification, localization, and isolation of defined microbial taxa. However, fluorescence signal strength is often a limiting factor for targeting all members in a microbial community. Here, we present the application of a multilabeled FISH approach (MiL-FISH) that (i) enables the simultaneous targeting of up to seven microbial groups using combinatorial labeling of a single oligonucleotide probe, (ii) is applicable for the isolation of unfixed environmental microorganisms via fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS), and (iii) improves signal and imaging quality of tissue sections in acrylic resin for precise localization of individual microbial cells. We show the ability of MiL-FISH to distinguish between seven microbial groups using a mock community of marine organisms and its applicability for the localization of bacteria associated with animal tissue and their isolation from host tissues using FACS. To further increase the number of potential target organisms, a streamlined combinatorial labeling and spectral imaging-FISH (CLASI-FISH) concept with MiL-FISH probes is presented here. Through the combination of increased probe signal, the possibility of targeting hard-to-detect taxa and isolating these from an environmental sample, the identification and precise localization of microbiota in host tissues, and the simultaneous multilabeling of up to seven microbial groups, we show here that MiL-FISH is a multifaceted alternative to standard monolabeled FISH that can be used for a wide range of biological and medical applications. PMID:26475101

  15. Non-dental primary care providers' views on challenges in providing oral health services and strategies to improve oral health in Australian rural and remote communities: a qualitative study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnett, Tony; Hoang, Ha; Stuart, Jackie; Crocombe, Len

    2015-10-29

    To investigate the challenges of providing oral health advice/treatment as experienced by non-dental primary care providers in rural and remote areas with no resident dentist, and their views on ways in which oral health and oral health services could be improved for their communities. Qualitative study with semistructured interviews and thematic analysis. Four remote communities in outback Queensland, Australia. 35 primary care providers who had experience in providing oral health advice to patients and four dental care providers who had provided oral health services to patients from the four communities. In the absence of a resident dentist, rural and remote residents did present to non-dental primary care providers with oral health problems such as toothache, abscess, oral/gum infection and sore mouth for treatment and advice. Themes emerged from the interview data around communication challenges and strategies to improve oral health. Although, non-dental care providers commonly advised patients to see a dentist, they rarely communicated with the dentist in the nearest regional town. Participants proposed that oral health could be improved by: enabling access to dental practitioners, educating communities on preventive oral healthcare, and building the skills and knowledge base of non-dental primary care providers in the field of oral health. Prevention is a cornerstone to better oral health in rural and remote communities as well as in more urbanised communities. Strategies to improve the provision of dental services by either visiting or resident dental practitioners should include scope to provide community-based oral health promotion activities, and to engage more closely with other primary care service providers in these small communities. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to http://www.bmj.com/company/products-services/rights-and-licensing/

  16. Significant improvements in near vision, reading speed, central visual field and related quality of life after ranibizumab treatment of wet age-related macular degeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frennesson, Christina; Nilsson, Ulla L; Peebo, Beatrice B; Nilsson, Sven E G

    2010-06-01

    To investigate the effects on near visual acuity, reading speed, central visual field and related quality of life of ranibizumab treatment of wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD). The study was a prospective, non-comparative consecutive case series, followed for 3 months and investigator-driven. Thirty eyes of 30 patients with wet AMD were included, mean age 75 years (range 69-95 years). In addition to a full ophthalmological examination--including best-corrected visual acuity (BCVA; Early Treatment Diabetic Research Study chart), fundus biomicroscopy, fundus photography, fluorescein angiography, indocyanine green angiography (occult cases) and ocular coherence tomography--near visual acuity, reading speed, central visual field and quality of life for related activities were also investigated at baseline and at 3 months after ranibizumab treatment. Mean BCVA increased from 62 +/- 11 to 66 +/- 14 letters at 3 months (7%; p = 0.018). Near vision improved from 9 +/- 5 to 6 +/- 3 points (33%; p = 0.0006) and reading speed increased from 59 +/- 40 to 85 +/- 50 words/min (44%; p Reading newspaper text in the group in which the better eye was treated showed the highest increase in quality of life score of all: 116%. The increase in BCVA after ranibizumab treatment is well established. The present study also showed significant improvements in other important visual qualities, such as near visual acuity, reading speed, central visual field and several activities influencing quality of life. The improvement was greater for near activities than for distance activities. Therefore, the beneficial effects of ranibizumab treatment shown here are more extensive than those reported previously.

  17. Improvement of visual acuity based on optical coherence tomography patterns following intravitreal bevacizumab treatment in patients with diabetic macular edema

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Haider R. Cheema

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available AIM:To report the visual outcome based on various patterns of optical coherence tomography (OCT morphology in diabetic macular edema (DME, following treatment with anti-VEGF intravitreal bevacizumab (IVB injection.METHODS:Sixty-seven consecutive subjects with centre involving DME underwent intravitreal injection of Bevacizumab (1.25 mg/0.05 mL in this retrospective, comparative, non randomized study. The DME was classified into one of four categories:focal, diffuse, focal cystoid and neurosensory detachment based on OCT. Best corrected visual acuity (BCVA, macular appearance, and OCT findings were used to decide whether the subject should have a repeat injection of intravitreal bevacizumab. Outcome measures were a change in mean BCVA (Snellen converted to logMAR and central macular thickness (CMT in each group during the six month follow-up period.RESULTS:The mean BCVA improved to logMAR 0.23 at final follow-up from a baseline of 0.32 logMAR (P=0.040 in the focal group, logMAR 0.80 at final follow-up from a baseline of 0.82 logMAR (P=0.838 in the diffuse group, worsened to logMAR 0.53 at final follow-up from a baseline of 0.43 logMAR (P=0.276 in the focal cystoid group, and improved to logMAR 0.79 at final follow-up from a baseline of 0.93 logMAR (P=0.490 in the neurosensory detachment group. The mean CMT before treatment were 298.8±25.03 μm in the focal group, 310.8±40.6 μm in the diffuse group, 397.15±31.05 μm in the focal cystoid group and 401.03±75.1 μm in the neurosensory detachment group. A mean of 2.05 (range:1-5 injections in the focal group, 1.32 (range:1-2 in the diffuse group, 2.6 (range:1-6 in the focal cystoid group and 2.6 (range:1-6 in the neurosensory detachment group were performed during the six month follow-up period. Following intravitreal bevacizumab treatment, vision improved, remained unchanged or worsened in 11, 7 and 2 subjects in focal group; 11, 9 and 8 in diffuse group; 0, 2 and 4 in focal cystoid group and 5

  18. Improved classification and visualization of healthy and pathological hard dental tissues by modeling specular reflections in NIR hyperspectral images

    Science.gov (United States)

    Usenik, Peter; Bürmen, Miran; Fidler, Aleš; Pernuš, Franjo; Likar, Boštjan

    2012-03-01

    Despite major improvements in dental healthcare and technology, dental caries remains one of the most prevalent chronic diseases of modern society. The initial stages of dental caries are characterized by demineralization of enamel crystals, commonly known as white spots, which are difficult to diagnose. Near-infrared (NIR) hyperspectral imaging is a new promising technique for early detection of demineralization which can classify healthy and pathological dental tissues. However, due to non-ideal illumination of the tooth surface the hyperspectral images can exhibit specular reflections, in particular around the edges and the ridges of the teeth. These reflections significantly affect the performance of automated classification and visualization methods. Cross polarized imaging setup can effectively remove the specular reflections, however is due to the complexity and other imaging setup limitations not always possible. In this paper, we propose an alternative approach based on modeling the specular reflections of hard dental tissues, which significantly improves the classification accuracy in the presence of specular reflections. The method was evaluated on five extracted human teeth with corresponding gold standard for 6 different healthy and pathological hard dental tissues including enamel, dentin, calculus, dentin caries, enamel caries and demineralized regions. Principal component analysis (PCA) was used for multivariate local modeling of healthy and pathological dental tissues. The classification was performed by employing multiple discriminant analysis. Based on the obtained results we believe the proposed method can be considered as an effective alternative to the complex cross polarized imaging setups.

  19. Does infrared visualization improve selection of venipuncture sites for indwelling needle at the forearm in second-year nursing students?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fukuroku, Keiko; Narita, Yugo; Taneda, Yukari; Kobayashi, Shinji; Gayle, Alberto A

    2016-05-01

    To evaluate the effectiveness of a vein visualization display system using near-infrared light ("Vein Display") for the safe and proper selection of venipuncture sites for indwelling needle placement in the forearm. Ten second year nursing students were recruited to apply an indwelling needle line with and without Vein Display. Another ten participants were recruited from various faculty to serve as patients. The quality of the venipuncture procedure at various selected sites was evaluated according to a scale developed by the authors. Time, scores and patterns of puncture-site selection were compared with respect to three different methods: [1] attempt 1 (tourniquet only), [2] attempt 2 (Vein Display only) and [3] attempt 3 (both). To validate the effectiveness of Vein Display, 52 trials were conducted in total. We found that venipuncture site selection time was significantly improved with the Vein Display, particularly in the case of difficult to administer venipuncture sites. Overall, we found no significant difference with respect to venipuncture quality, as determined by our scale. These results suggest that equipment such as the Vein Display can contribute immensely to the improvement of practical skills, such as venipuncture, especially in the context of elderly patients. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  20. Unilateral Stability and Visual Feedback Body Control Improves After Three-Month Resistance Training in Overweight Individuals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zemková, Erika; Kyselovičová, Ol'ga; Jeleň, Michal; Kováčiková, Zuzana; Ollé, Gábor; Štefániková, Gabriela; Vilman, Tomáš; Baláž, Miroslav; Kurdiová, Timea; Ukropec, Jozef; Ukropcová, Barbara

    2017-01-01

    The authors evaluated the effect of 3 months of resistance and aerobic training (3 sessions/week) on body balance in a group of 25 overweight and obese individuals. Prior to and after the training, they performed static and task-oriented balance tests under various conditions. Mean center of pressure (CoP) velocity and mean trace length of the CoP in the y-axis registered during a one-legged stance significantly decreased after the resistance training (19.1%, p = .024; 29.3%, p = .009). Mean trace length of the CoP in the y-axis decreased significantly also during a bipedal stance on a foam surface with eyes open and closed (10.9%, p = .040; 18.2%, p = .027). In addition, mean CoP distance and mean squared CoP distance in the anteroposterior direction during a visually guided center of mass (CoM) tracking task significantly improved (14.7%, p = .033; 28.2%, p = .016). However, only mean trace length of the CoP in the y-axis during a bipedal stance on a foam surface with eyes open and closed significantly decreased after the aerobic training (10.3%, p = .047; 16.5%, p = .029). It may be concluded that resistance training is more efficient for the improvement of the anteroposterior unilateral stability and the accuracy of the regulation of the CoM anteroposterior position than aerobic training in overweight and obese individuals.

  1. Direct visualization of fiber information by coherence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hlawitschka, Mario; Garth, Christoph; Tricoche, Xavier; Kindlmann, Gordon; Scheuermann, Gerik; Joy, Kenneth I; Hamann, Bernd

    2010-03-01

    The structure of fiber tracts in DT-MRI data presents a challenging problem for visualization and analysis. We derive visualization of such traces from a local coherence measure and achieve much improved visual segmentation. We introduce a coherence measure defined for fiber tracts. This quantitative assessment is based on infinitesimal deviations of neighboring tracts and allows identification and segmentation of coherent fiber regions. We use a hardware-accelerated implementation to achieve interactive visualization on slices and provide several approaches to visualize coherence information. Furthermore, we enhance existing techniques by combining them with coherence. We demonstrate our method on both a canine heart, where the myocardial structure is visualized, and a human brain, where we achieve detailed visualization of major and minor fiber bundles in a quality similar to and exceeding fiber clustering approaches. Our approach allows detailed and fast visualization of important anatomical structures in DT-MRI data sets.

  2. Defense Logistics Agency Aviation Can Improve its Processes to Obtain Restitution From Contractors That Provide Defective Spare Parts

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-02-23

    Spare Parts Report No. DODIG-2016-052 Mission Our mission is to provide independent, relevant, and timely oversight of the Department of Defense that...its Processes to Obtain Restitution From Contractors That Provide Defective Spare Parts DODIG-2016-052 (Project No. D2015-D000AG-0107.000) │ i Visit...from contractors that provided defective spare parts . This is the second in a series of audits on product quality deficiency reports processed by

  3. Visual Perceptual Learning and Models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dosher, Barbara; Lu, Zhong-Lin

    2017-09-15

    Visual perceptual learning through practice or training can significantly improve performance on visual tasks. Originally seen as a manifestation of plasticity in the primary visual cortex, perceptual learning is more readily understood as improvements in the function of brain networks that integrate processes, including sensory representations, decision, attention, and reward, and balance plasticity with system stability. This review considers the primary phenomena of perceptual learning, theories of perceptual learning, and perceptual learning's effect on signal and noise in visual processing and decision. Models, especially computational models, play a key role in behavioral and physiological investigations of the mechanisms of perceptual learning and for understanding, predicting, and optimizing human perceptual processes, learning, and performance. Performance improvements resulting from reweighting or readout of sensory inputs to decision provide a strong theoretical framework for interpreting perceptual learning and transfer that may prove useful in optimizing learning in real-world applications.

  4. Simultaneous visualization of two Citrus tristeza virus genotypes provides new insights into the structure of multi-component virus populations in a host.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bergua, María; Phelan, Dane M; Bak, Aurélie; Bloom, David C; Folimonova, Svetlana Y

    2016-04-01

    Complex Citrus tristeza virus (CTV) populations composed of mixtures of different strains of the virus are commonly found in citrus trees in the field. At present, little is known about how these populations are formed, maintained, and how they are structured within a host. Here we used a novel in situ hybridization approach allowing simultaneous visualization of two different RNA targets with high sensitivity and specificity to examine the distribution of two isolates, T36 and T68-1, representing phylogenetically distinct strains of CTV, in a citrus host in single and mixed infections. Remarkably, in doubly inoculated plants the two virus variants appeared to be well mixed within the infected tissue and showed no spatial segregation. In addition, both CTV variants were often found occupying the same cells. Possible mechanisms involved in shaping CTV populations and the biological significance of the observed lack of structural separation of the individual components are discussed. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. CMS tracker visualization tools

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mennea, M.S. [Dipartimento Interateneo di Fisica ' Michelangelo Merlin' e INFN sezione di Bari, Via Amendola 173 - 70126 Bari (Italy); Osborne, I. [Northeastern University, 360 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115 (United States); Regano, A. [Dipartimento Interateneo di Fisica ' Michelangelo Merlin' e INFN sezione di Bari, Via Amendola 173 - 70126 Bari (Italy); Zito, G. [Dipartimento Interateneo di Fisica ' Michelangelo Merlin' e INFN sezione di Bari, Via Amendola 173 - 70126 Bari (Italy)]. E-mail: giuseppe.zito@ba.infn.it

    2005-08-21

    This document will review the design considerations, implementations and performance of the CMS Tracker Visualization tools. In view of the great complexity of this sub-detector (more than 50 millions channels organized in 16540 modules each one of these being a complete detector), the standard CMS visualization tools (IGUANA and IGUANACMS) that provide basic 3D capabilities and integration within CMS framework, respectively, have been complemented with additional 2D graphics objects. Based on the experience acquired using this software to debug and understand both hardware and software during the construction phase, we propose possible future improvements to cope with online monitoring and event analysis during data taking.

  6. Effectiveness of Provider and Community Interventions to Improve Treatment of Uncomplicated Malaria in Nigeria: A Cluster Randomized Controlled Trial.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Obinna Onwujekwe

    Full Text Available The World Health Organization recommends that malaria be confirmed by parasitological diagnosis before treatment using Artemisinin-based Combination Therapy (ACT. Despite this, many health workers in malaria endemic countries continue to diagnose malaria based on symptoms alone. This study evaluates interventions to help bridge this gap between guidelines and provider practice. A stratified cluster-randomized trial in 42 communities in Enugu state compared 3 scenarios: Rapid Diagnostic Tests (RDTs with basic instruction (control; RDTs with provider training (provider arm; and RDTs with provider training plus a school-based community intervention (provider-school arm. The primary outcome was the proportion of patients treated according to guidelines, a composite indicator requiring patients to be tested for malaria and given treatment consistent with the test result. The primary outcome was evaluated among 4946 (93% of the 5311 patients invited to participate. A total of 40 communities (12 in control, 14 per intervention arm were included in the analysis. There was no evidence of differences between the three arms in terms of our composite indicator (p = 0.36: stratified risk difference was 14% (95% CI -8.3%, 35.8%; p = 0.26 in the provider arm and 1% (95% CI -21.1%, 22.9%; p = 0.19 in the provider-school arm, compared with control. The level of testing was low across all arms (34% in control; 48% provider arm; 37% provider-school arm; p = 0.47. Presumptive treatment of uncomplicated malaria remains an ingrained behaviour that is difficult to change. With or without extensive supporting interventions, levels of testing in this study remained critically low. Governments and researchers must continue to explore alternative ways of encouraging providers to deliver appropriate treatment and avoid the misuse of valuable medicines.ClinicalTrials.gov NCT01350752.

  7. B-CAN: a resource sharing platform to improve the operation, visualization and integrated analysis of TCGA breast cancer data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wen, Can-Hong; Ou, Shao-Min; Guo, Xiao-Bo; Liu, Chen-Feng; Shen, Yan-Bo; You, Na; Cai, Wei-Hong; Shen, Wen-Jun; Wang, Xue-Qin; Tan, Hai-Zhu

    2017-12-12

    Breast cancer is a high-risk heterogeneous disease with myriad subtypes and complicated biological features. The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) breast cancer database provides researchers with the large-scale genome and clinical data via web portals and FTP services. Researchers are able to gain new insights into their related fields, and evaluate experimental discoveries with TCGA. However, it is difficult for researchers who have little experience with database and bioinformatics to access and operate on because of TCGA's complex data format and diverse files. For ease of use, we build the breast cancer (B-CAN) platform, which enables data customization, data visualization, and private data center. The B-CAN platform runs on Apache server and interacts with the backstage of MySQL database by PHP. Users can customize data based on their needs by combining tables from original TCGA database and selecting variables from each table. The private data center is applicable for private data and two types of customized data. A key feature of the B-CAN is that it provides single table display and multiple table display. Customized data with one barcode corresponding to many records and processed customized data are allowed in Multiple Tables Display. The B-CAN is an intuitive and high-efficient data-sharing platform.

  8. Improving the United States airline industry's capacity to provide safe and dignified services to travelers with disabilities: focus group findings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCarthy, Michael J

    2011-01-01

    As a component of a training development project for intercity air travel providers, we investigated the capacity of the airline industry to meet the needs of travelers with disabilities by exploring: (1) the level of sensitivity among personnel to travelers' needs, (2) training currently provided, (3) areas in which additional training might be beneficial, and (4) organisational/systems-level commitment to dignified assistance to all travelers. Forty-four airline/vendor employees participated in nine focus groups in four US cities. Groups were audio recorded and transcribed. A grounded-theory approach was used to develop a coding system which was then applied to transcripts to identify themes. Factors influencing capacity grouped broadly into four areas: characteristics of the job/system, characteristics of current training, characteristics of providers themselves, and characteristics of travelers. At an interpersonal level, providers were empathetic and desired to provide dignified services. They lacked training and adequate equipment in some cases, however, and organisational commitment varied between companies. Traveler characteristics were also shown to impact service delivery. Results are promising but additional regulatory and organisational policies are needed to ensure quality services. Providers and consumers of intercity air travel services may benefit from the findings and recommendations of this study.

  9. Module structure of interphotoreceptor retinoid-binding protein (IRBP may provide bases for its complex role in the visual cycle – structure/function study of Xenopus IRBP

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ghosh Debashis

    2007-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Interphotoreceptor retinoid-binding protein's (IRBP remarkable module structure may be critical to its role in mediating the transport of all-trans and 11-cis retinol, and 11-cis retinal between rods, cones, RPE and Müller cells during the visual cycle. We isolated cDNAs for Xenopus IRBP, and expressed and purified its individual modules, module combinations, and the full-length polypeptide. Binding of all-trans retinol, 11-cis retinal and 9-(9-anthroyloxy stearic acid were characterized by fluorescence spectroscopy monitoring ligand-fluorescence enhancement, quenching of endogenous protein fluorescence, and energy transfer. Finally, the X-ray crystal structure of module-2 was used to predict the location of the ligand-binding sites, and compare their structures among modules using homology modeling. Results The full-length Xenopus IRBP cDNA codes for a polypeptide of 1,197 amino acid residues beginning with a signal peptide followed by four homologous modules each ~300 amino acid residues in length. Modules 1 and 3 are more closely related to each other than either is to modules 2 and 4. Modules 1 and 4 are most similar to the N- and C-terminal modules of the two module IRBP of teleosts. Our data are consistent with the model that vertebrate IRBPs arose through two genetic duplication events, but that the middle two modules were lost during the evolution of the ray finned fish. The sequence of the expressed full-length IRBP was confirmed by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. The recombinant full-length Xenopus IRBP bound all-trans retinol and 11-cis retinaldehyde at 3 to 4 sites with Kd's of 0.2 to 0.3 μM, and was active in protecting all-trans retinol from degradation. Module 2 showed selectivity for all-trans retinol over 11-cis retinaldehyde. The binding data are correlated to the results of docking of all-trans-retinol to the crystal structure of Xenopus module 2 suggesting two ligand-binding sites

  10. Improving support for parents of children with hearing loss: provider training on use of targeted communication strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muñoz, Karen; Nelson, Lauri; Blaiser, Kristina; Price, Tanner; Twohig, Michael

    2015-02-01

    When proper protocols are followed, children who are identified with a permanent hearing loss early in life have opportunities to develop language on par with their typical hearing peers. Young children with hearing loss are dependent on their parents to manage intervention during early years critical to their development, and parents' ability to effectively integrate recommendations in daily life is foundational for intervention success. Audiologists and early intervention professionals not only need to provide current evidence-based services, but also must address parents' emotional and learning needs related to their child's hearing loss. This study explored practice patterns related to education and support provided to parents of children with hearing loss and the influence of an in-service training on provider attitudes. This study used a prepost design with a self-report questionnaire to identify practice patterns related to communication skills and support used by providers when working with parents of children with hearing loss. A total of 45 participants (21 professionals and 24 graduate students) currently working with children completed the pretraining questionnaire, and 29 participants (13 professionals and 16 graduate students) completed the postquestionnaire. Data were collected using an online questionnaire before the training and 1 mo after training. Descriptive analyses were done to identify trends, and paired-samples t-tests were used to determine changes pretraining to posttraining. Findings revealed that professionals most frequently teach skills to mothers (91%) and infrequently teach skills to fathers (19%) and other caregivers (10%). Professionals reported frequently collaborating with other intervention providers (76%) and infrequently collaborating with primary care physicians (19%). One-third of the professionals reported addressing symptoms of depression and anxiety as an interfering factor with the ability to implement management

  11. Does Knowledge of Spatial Configuration in Adults with Visual Impairments Improve with Tactile Exposure to a Small-Scale Model of Their Urban Environment?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Picard, Delphine; Pry, Rene

    2009-01-01

    This study assessed the efficiency of a model of a familiar urban area for enhancing knowledge of the spatial environment by adults with visual impairments. It found a significant improvement in knowledge of spatial configuration after exposure to the model, suggesting that models are powerful means of developing cognitive mapping in people who…

  12. The Role of Visual Feedback and Creative Exploration for the Improvement of Timing Accuracy in Performing Musical Ornaments

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Timmers, R.; Sadakata, M.; Desain, P.W.M.

    2012-01-01

    in developing a visual feedback system for a creative activity such as music performance, the objective is not just to reinforce one particular manner of performing. Instead, a desirable characteristic might be that the visual feedback enhances flexibility and originality, in addition to

  13. Development of an Educational Video to Improve Patient Knowledge and Communication with Their Healthcare Providers about Colorectal Cancer Screening

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katz, Mira L.; Heaner, Sarah; Reiter, Paul; van Putten, Julie; Murray, Lee; McDougle, Leon; Cegala, Donald J.; Post, Douglas; David, Prabu; Slater, Michael; Paskett, Electra D.

    2009-01-01

    Background: Low rates of colorectal cancer (CRC) screening persist due to individual, provider, and system level barriers. Purpose: To develop and obtain initial feedback about a CRC screening educational video from community members and medical professionals. Methods: Focus groups of patients were conducted prior to the development of the CRC…

  14. New epifluorescence microscope providing pairs of specific fluorescence images of double-stained cells for simultaneous visual perception and for quantification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heiden, Thomas; Tribukait, Bernhard

    1996-05-01

    A new epi-fluorescence microscope for analysis of cells stained with two fluorochromes which can be spectrally isolated is described. The system makes it possible to perform independent and specific spectral selection of each dye (e.g. DAPI and CY3) while perceiving the two specific images simultaneously by eye. The optics uses splitting of the primary excitation and emission light beams, independent modification of the separated beams, and their reunification. Modifications in the separated beams comprise: (1) isolation of specific wavelengths (365 nm and 546 nm in the excitation light path, 435 - 500 nm and 590 - 750 nm in the emission light beams), (2) wavelength switching without image displacement and blur by means of a light chopper alternating between ultraviolet-excitation/blue-detection and green-excitation/red-detection at frequencies of up to 140 Hz for observation by eye without image flicker, and (3) the possible separate positioning of lenses for compensation of chromatic aberrations. The system demonstrates a good transmission of the chosen wavelengths. A high specificity of double fluorescence analysis with minimal effects of spectral overlap was attained with good temporal resolution. It has been shown that it is feasible to obtain separate chromatic compensations for the use of a microscope objective in spectral regions outside the range for which the objective is corrected. Quantitative and independent measurements of the two fluorescence images by a CCD camera synchronized with the light chopper are feasible. In conclusion, this imaging system is outlined for highly specific visual analysis and exact quantitative measurement of double fluorescence labeled specimens in cytology and histology.

  15. Appearance traits in fish farming: progress from classical genetics to genomics, providing insight into current and potential genetic improvement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colihueque, Nelson; Araneda, Cristian

    2014-01-01

    Appearance traits in fish, those external body characteristics that influence consumer acceptance at point of sale, have come to the forefront of commercial fish farming, as culture profitability is closely linked to management of these traits. Appearance traits comprise mainly body shape and skin pigmentation. Analysis of the genetic basis of these traits in different fish reveals significant genetic variation within populations, indicating potential for their genetic improvement. Work into ascertaining the minor or major genes underlying appearance traits for commercial fish is emerging, with substantial progress in model fish in terms of identifying genes that control body shape and skin colors. In this review, we describe research progress to date, especially with regard to commercial fish, and discuss genomic findings in model fish in order to better address the genetic basis of the traits. Given that appearance traits are important in commercial fish, the genomic information related to this issue promises to accelerate the selection process in coming years. PMID:25140172

  16. Appearance traits in fish farming: progress from classical genetics to genomics, providing insight into current and potential genetic improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nelson eColihueque

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Appearance traits in fish, those external body characteristics that influence consumer acceptance at point of sale, have come to the forefront of commercial fish farming, as culture profitability is closely linked to management of these traits. Appearance traits comprise mainly body shape and skin pigmentation. Analysis of the genetic basis of these traits in different fish reveals significant genetic variation within populations, indicating potential for their genetic improvement. Work into ascertaining the minor or major genes underlying appearance traits for commercial fish is emerging, with substantial progress in model fish in terms of identifying genes that control body shape and skin colors. In this review, we describe research progress to date, especially with regard to commercial fish, and discuss genomic findings in model fish in order to better address the genetic basis of the traits. Given that appearance traits are important in commercial fish, the genomic information related to this issue promises to accelerate the selection process in coming years.

  17. SQ house dust mite (HDM) SLIT-tablet provides clinical improvement in HDM-induced allergic rhinitis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Klimek, Ludger; Mosbech, Holger; Zieglmayer, Petra

    2016-01-01

    House dust mite (HDM) allergy represents a highly prevalent inhalant allergy, and exposure to HDM allergens results in allergic rhinitis with persistent symptoms that may not be adequately controlled with available allergy pharmacotherapy. Allergy immunotherapy constitutes a complementary treatment...... option targeting the underlying immunological mechanisms of allergic disease and represents the only treatment with a potential for disease modification and long-term efficacy. As traditional allergy immunotherapy delivered by subcutaneous injection of specific HDM allergens involves a time......-consuming treatment regimen and a risk of systemic adverse reactions, sublingually administered allergy immunotherapy (SLIT) has been investigated as a more convenient treatment option with similar levels of efficacy and an improved safety profile that allows for at-home daily administration. In this Drug Profile, we...

  18. DspaceOgre 3D Graphics Visualization Tool

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jain, Abhinandan; Myin, Steven; Pomerantz, Marc I.

    2011-01-01

    This general-purpose 3D graphics visualization C++ tool is designed for visualization of simulation and analysis data for articulated mechanisms. Examples of such systems are vehicles, robotic arms, biomechanics models, and biomolecular structures. DspaceOgre builds upon the open-source Ogre3D graphics visualization library. It provides additional classes to support the management of complex scenes involving multiple viewpoints and different scene groups, and can be used as a remote graphics server. This software provides improved support for adding programs at the graphics processing unit (GPU) level for improved performance. It also improves upon the messaging interface it exposes for use as a visualization server.

  19. Improving correctional healthcare providers' ability to care for transgender patients: Development and evaluation of a theory-driven cultural and clinical competence intervention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    White Hughto, Jaclyn M; Clark, Kirsty A; Altice, Frederick L; Reisner, Sari L; Kershaw, Trace S; Pachankis, John E

    2017-12-01

    Correctional healthcare providers' limited cultural and clinical competence to care for transgender patients represents a barrier to care for incarcerated transgender individuals. The present study aimed to adapt, deliver, and evaluate a transgender cultural and clinical competence intervention for correctional healthcare providers. In the summer of 2016, a theoretically-informed, group-based intervention to improve transgender cultural and clinical competence was delivered to 34 correctional healthcare providers in New England. A confidential survey assessed providers' cultural and clinical competence to care for transgender patients, self-efficacy to provide hormone therapy, subjective norms related to transgender care, and willingness to provide gender-affirming care to transgender patients before and after (immediately and 3-months) the intervention. Linear mixed effects regression models were fit to assess change in study outcomes over time. Qualitative exit interviews assessed feasibility and acceptability of the intervention. Providers' willingness to provide gender-affirming care improved immediately post-intervention (β = 0.38; SE = 0.41, p cultural competence (χ2 = 22.49; p cultural and clinical competence, self-efficacy, subjective norms, and willingness to provide gender-affirming care to transgender patients. Continued efforts should be made to train correctional healthcare providers in culturally and clinically competent gender-affirming care in order to improve the health of incarcerated transgender people. Future efficacy testing of this intervention is warranted. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  20. A feast of visualization

    Science.gov (United States)

    2008-12-01

    Strength through structure The visualization and assessment of inner human bone structures can provide better predictions of fracture risk due to osteoporosis. Using micro-computed tomography (µCT), Christoph Räth from the Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics and colleagues based in Munich, Vienna and Salzburg have shown how complex lattice-shaped bone structures can be visualized. The structures were quantified by calculating certain "texture measures" that yield new information about the stability of the bone. A 3D visualization showing the variation with orientation of one of the texture measures for four different bone specimens (from left to right) is shown above. Such analyses may help us to improve our understanding of disease and drug-induced changes in bone structure (C Räth et al. 2008 New J. Phys. 10 125010).