• Prevalence and clinical implications of respiratory viruses in stable chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and exacerbations: a systematic review and meta-analysis protocol.

      Kefala, Anastasia M; Fortescue, Rebecca; Alimani, Gioulinta S; Kanavidis, Prodromos; McDonnell, Melissa Jane; Magiorkinis, Emmanouil; Megremis, Spyridon; Paraskevis, Dimitrios; Voyiatzaki, Chrysa; Mathioudakis, Georgios A; et al. (2020-04-07)
      Introduction: Both stable chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and acute exacerbations represent leading causes of death, disability and healthcare expenditure. They are complex, heterogeneous and their mechanisms are poorly understood. The role of respiratory viruses has been studied extensively but is still not adequately addressed clinically. Through a rigorous evidence update, we aim to define the prevalence and clinical burden of the different respiratory viruses in stable COPD and exacerbations, and to investigate whether viral load of usual respiratory viruses could be used for diagnosis of exacerbations triggered by viruses, which are currently not diagnosed or treated aetiologically. Methods and analysis: Based on a prospectively registered protocol, we will systematically review the literature using standard methods recommended by the Cochrane Collaboration and the Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluation working group. We will search Medline/PubMed, Excerpta Medica dataBASE (EMBASE), the Cochrane Library, the WHO's Clinical Trials Registry and the proceedings of relevant international conferences on 2 March 2020. We will evaluate: (A) the prevalence of respiratory viruses in stable COPD and exacerbations, (B) differences in the viral loads of respiratory viruses in stable COPD vs exacerbations, to explore whether the viral load of prevalent respiratory viruses could be used as a diagnostic biomarker for exacerbations triggered by viruses and (C) the association between the presence of respiratory viruses and clinical outcomes in stable COPD and in exacerbations. Ethics and dissemination: Ethics approval is not required since no primary data will be collected. Our findings will be presented in national and international scientific conferences and will be published in peer reviewed journals. Respiratory viruses currently represent a lost opportunity to improve the outcomes of both stable COPD and exacerbations. Our work aspires to 'demystify' the prevalence and clinical burden of viruses in stable COPD and exacerbations and to promote clinical and translational research.
    • ERS International Congress, Madrid, 2019: highlights from the Airway Diseases, Asthma and COPD Assembly.

      Lahousse, Lies; Bahmer, Thomas; Cuevas-Ocaña, Sara; Flajolet, Pauline; Mathioudakis, Alexander G; McDonnell, Melissa; Uller, Lena; Schleich, Florence; Dortas Junior, Sergio; Idzko, Marco; et al. (2020-02-17)
      The European Respiratory Society (ERS) International Congress 2019 in Madrid, Spain, was a platform for scientific discussion of the highest quality scientific research, cutting-edge techniques and innovative new therapies within the respiratory field. This article discusses some of the high-quality research studies presented at that Congress, with a focus on airway diseases, including asthma, COPD, small airways, bronchiectasis and cough, presented through the Airway Diseases, Asthma and COPD Assembly (Assembly 5) of the ERS. The authors establish the key take-home messages of these studies, compare their findings and place them into context of current understanding.
    • Senescence and Inflammatory Markers for Predicting Clinical Progression in Parkinson's Disease: The ICICLE-PD Study.

      Martin-Ruiz, Carmen; Williams-Gray, Caroline H; Yarnall, Alison J; Boucher, John J; Lawson, Rachael A; Wijeyekoon, Ruwani S; Barker, Roger A; Kolenda, Claire; Parker, Craig; Burn, David J; et al. (2020-01-13)
      Background: Cognitive decline is a frequent complication of Parkinson's disease (PD) and the identification of predictive biomarkers for it would help in its management. Objective: Our aim was to analyse whether senescence markers (telomere length, p16 and p21) or their change over time could help to better predict cognitive and motor progression of newly diagnosed PD patients. We also compared these senescence markers to previously analysed markers of inflammation for the same purpose. Methods: This study examined the association of blood-derived markers of cell senescence and inflammation with motor and cognitive function over time in an incident PD cohort (the ICICLE-PD study). Participants (154 newly diagnosed PD patients and 99 controls) underwent physical and cognitive assessments over 36 months of follow up. Mean leukocyte telomere length and the expression of senescence markers p21 and p16 were measured at two time points (baseline and 18 months). Additionally, we selected five inflammatory markers from existing baseline data. Results: We found that PD patients had shorter telomeres at baseline and 18 months compared to age-matched healthy controls which also correlated to dementia at 36 months. Baseline p16 levels were associated with faster rates of motor and cognitive decline over 36 months in PD cases, while a simple inflammatory summary score at baseline best predicted cognitive score over this same time period in PD patients. Conclusion: Our study suggests that both inflammatory and senescence markers (p16) are valuable predictors of clinical progression in PD patients.
    • The Prevalence and Management of Metabolic Acidosis of Chronic Kidney Disease

      Ahmed, A.R.; Satti, M.M.; Abdalla, A.E.; Giblin, L.; Lappin, D. (Irish Medical Journal, 2019-10)
      Emerging evidence supports initiating oral sodium bicarbonate (OSB) at a serum bicarbonate (HCO3) level of less than 22mmol/L. We look to identify the prevalence of metabolic acidosis of chronic kidney disease (MA-CKD) and its management with OSB at a regional university hospital.
    • What Stops Doctors Switching from Intravenous to Oral Antibiotics?

      Hogan-Murphy, D.; Waqas, S.; Tuite, H.; Ni Riain, U. (Irish Medical Journal, 2019-09)
      To explore doctors’ perceptions of the motivators and barriers to complying with intravenous to oral switch antibiotic guidelines in a Model 4 Irish hospital.
    • Can Early Changes in Vital signs Predict Duration of Antibiotic Therapy in Suspected Neonatal Sepsis?

      McGovern, M; Morrissey, P; Ryan, E (Irish Medical Journal, 2019-04)
      Suspected sepsis remains a leading causes of Neonatal Intensive Care Unit admission, with infants often receiving 48-72 hours of empirical antibiotic therapy. Early in treatment it is difficult to predict infants who will require prolonged antibiotic therapy. Our aim was to assess if vital sign measurements in the initial period of treatment can predict those neonates requiring prolonged antibiotic therapy in term and late-preterm infants.
    • Joint association of urinary sodium and potassium excretion with cardiovascular events and mortality: prospective cohort study.

      O'Donnell, Martin; Mente, Andrew; Rangarajan, Sumathy; McQueen, Matthew J; O'Leary, Neil; Yin, Lu; Liu, Xiaoyun; Swaminathan, Sumathi; Khatib, Rasha; Rosengren, Annika; et al. (BMJ, 2019-03-13)
      To evaluate the joint association of sodium and potassium urinary excretion (as surrogate measures of intake) with cardiovascular events and mortality, in the context of current World Health Organization recommendations for daily intake (<2.0 g sodium, >3.5 g potassium) in adults.
    • Meconium Ileus in Two Irish Newborns: The Presenting Feature of Cystic Fibrosis

      Smith, A.; Ryan, E; O’Keeffe, D; O’Donovan, D. (Irish Medical Journal, 2019-03)
      Cystic Fibrosis (CF) is the most common genetically inherited disease in Ireland1. Approximately 1/ 2,300 infants per year are born with CF in Ireland2. Newborn bloodspot screening (NBS) screening for CF was introduced to Ireland in 20113. NBS screening for CF is associated with improved lung function, nutritional status and increased survival into early adulthood4. Therefore early recognition and management of this chronic condition is vital to ensuring optimal patient management.
    • Kicking off a Retropharyngeal Abscess

      Rana, A; Heffernen, L; Binchy, J (Irish Medical Journal, 2019-03)
      Retropharyngeal abscesses (RPA) are deep neck space infections that can pose an immediate life-threatening emergency, such as airway obstruction. [1] The potential space can become infected by bacteria spreading from a contiguous area [2] or direct inoculation from penetrating trauma. [3] Infection is often polymicrobial (most commonly group A beta-hemolytic streptococci). [4
    • A Case of Paget-Schroetter Syndrome in a Young Male After Lifting Weights

      Umana, E.; Elsherif, M.; Binchy, J. (Irish Medical Journal, 2019-02)
      Paget-Schroetter Syndrome (PSS) or effort thrombosis of the axillary-subclavian venous axis is a rare disease affecting healthy young adults which requires a high index of suspicion to diagnose. Management often requires not only anticoagulation but also thrombolysis with first rib resection to prevent recurrence and complications. We present a case of a 31-year-old male who presented to our emergency department with pain and swelling of his left upper limb. He was diagnosed with PSS and underwent; anticoagulation, catheter directed thrombolysis and planned for first rib resection.
    • A Survey of Colorectal Cancer Surveillance Practices In Ireland, And Implementation of A Survivorship Care Plan Pilot Programme

      Greally, M.; Keane, F; Power, D.G; Leonard, G.D (Irish Medical Journal, 2019-02)
      The number of colorectal cancer (CRC) survivors in Ireland is rising. We aimed to survey current surveillance practices and pilot the use of survivorship care plans (SCPs) in the clinic.
    • Attitudes and Knowledge of Healthcare Professionals Regarding Organ Donation. A Survey of the Saolta University Health Care Group.

      Umana, E; Grant, O; Curran, E; May, P; Mohamed, A; O’Donnell, J; University Hospital Galway (Irish Medical Journal, 2018-11)
      Organ donation saves lives and healthcare professionals (HCPs) play a vital role in that process. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to assess the attitudes and level of knowledge of HCPs regarding organ donation. An online anonymous self-administered questionnaire containing 40 questions on organ donation using google forms was created. The survey was distributed to HCPs working in the Saolta University Health Care Group. A hundred and thirty-nine responses were received giving a response rate of 11.8%. HCPs willingness to donate their organs was at 93% compared to 97% willing to receive a transplant. More HCPs understood or had knowledge of the term donation after brain death (64%) than donation after circulatory death (49%). HCPs working in intensive care knew more about the management of brain dead donors than other specialties (p<0.0001). Over 60% of HCPs when asked either disagreed or strongly disagreed with the adequacy of training in organ donation and transplant. Overall, HCPs surveyed had positive attitudes towards organ donation but there was a lack of knowledge particularly among non-intensive care professionals. This study highlights the need to increase awareness along with implementation of educational programmes among HCPs regarding organ donation and transplant.
    • Academic Background of Irish Orthopaedic Trainees

      Irish Medical Journal, 2018-11
      Academic achievement may be used to distinguish between trainees in competition for training or consultant posts. This study aimed to quantify the academic achievement among orthopaedic trainees in Ireland.
    • Human Papilloma Virus- Associated Head and Neck Cancer: A 21st Century Pandemic; Assessing Student Awareness and Knowledge

      Kavanagh, F.G; McNamara, A.T; Fopohunda, O; Keogh, I.J (Irish Medical Journal, 2018-11)
      The Human Papillomavirus (HPV) is a causal agent in a subset of Head and Neck Cancers (HNC) being diagnosed in younger patients without significant tobacco and alcohol use. This survey assessed the awareness level of HNC and HPV vaccinations in university students.
    • Ultrasound as a Diagnostic Tool in Pediatric Distal Forearm Fractures

      Ahmed, A.S; Abdelhady, A.E; McNicholl, B (Irish Medical Journal, 2018-11)
      To evaluate the accuracy of ultrasound in pediatric distal forearm fractures as well as the effect on the ED waiting time for these patients.
    • Apixaban-Associated Spontaneous Splenic Rupture - A Case Report

      Abdelhady, A; Ahmed, A; Mohamed, Y; Binchy, J; University Hospital Galway (Irish Medical Journal, 2018-07)
      A 62-year-old lady presented to The Emergency Department (ED) with one-day history of dizziness, vomiting and feeling weak. ECG showed new onset Atrial Fibrillation. Four days ago, she was referred to the Cardiology team where she underwent PCI and was discharged on Apixaban and Plavix. Two days later she represented to the ED pale and hypotensive with BP 70/50. CT-Abdomen showed a large splenic hematoma and thickening of the inferior wall of the stomach.
    • Management of Paediatric Buckle (Torus) Wrist Fractures in Irish Emergency Departments: A National Survey

      Abdelhady, A; Ahmed, A; Umana, E; O’Donnell, J; University Hospital Galway (Irish Medical Journal, 2018-07)
      Buckle fractures are the most common wrist fractures reported in the paediatric age group. National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) recommends using a non-rigid immobilisation with no follow up for these patients and appropriate discharge advice. A telephone survey was conducted to assess the variation in practice in Irish hospitals regarding the mpediatrianagement of buckle fractures. Twenty eight centres that manage paediatric patients with trauma were contacted. This survey demonstrates that over 70% (>20) of centres in Ireland are managing buckle fractures using the traditional approach of backslab cast and follow-up in fracture clinic. Despite relevant research and NICE guideline recommendations, there is a slow adoption of current evidence among Irish hospitals which points to a need for a national consensus on management of buckle fractures.
    • The Perceptions of Patients, their Parents and Healthcare Providers on the Transition of Young Adults with Type 1 Diabetes to Adult Services in the West of Ireland.

      Walsh, Ó; Wynne, M; O Donnell, M; Geoghegan, R; O Hara, Mary Clare; Paediatric Department, University Hospital Galway, School of Medicine, National University of Ireland Galway, Research and Development, HSE Strategic Planning and Transformation (Irish Medical Journal, 2018-07)
      This study aims to describe the perceptions of young adults’, parents of young adults’ and health care professionals’ (HCPs) of the transition process for young adults with Type 1 Diabetes in the West of Ireland.
    • Introduction of an Oral Fluid Challenge Protocol in the Management of Children with Acute Gastroenteritis: A Regional Hospital Experience.

      Umana, E; Rana, A; Maduemem, K; Moylett, E (Irish Medical Journal, 2018-06)
      Oral rehydration therapy (ORT) remains the ideal first line therapy for acute gastroenteritis (AGE). Our aim was to assess the impact of introducing an Oral Fluid Challenge (OFC) protocol on outcomes such as intravenous fluid use and documentation in our institution. A single centre study with data collected retrospectively pre-implementation (April 2015) of the OFC protocol and post implementation (April 2016). Consecutive sampling of the first 55 patients presenting with GE like symptoms and underwent OFC were recruited. One hundred and ten patients were included in this study with 55 patients per cycle. The rates of IVF use decreased from 22% (12) in cycle one to 18% (10) in cycle two. There was an improvement in documentation by 26% (14) for level of dehydration and 52% (31) for OFC volume from cycle one to two. Overall, the addition of the OFC protocol to the management of patients with uncomplicated AGE would help streamline and improve care.
    • Alcohol-related presentations to emergency departments in Ireland: a descriptive prevalence study

      McNicholl, Brian; Goggin, Deirdre; O’Donovan, Diarmuid (BMJ Open, 2018-05-24)
      To determine the prevalence of alcohol-related presentations in all 29 emergency departments (EDs) in Ireland and compare with non-alcohol-related presentations in order to identify opportunities for improvements in the quality of patient care and related data collection.