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posted by [personal profile] aquenigmatic at 02:52pm on 08/03/2010 under

Hi critters,

You probably know, but in case you don't - there's an opportunity to comment on the proposed criteria for the fifth edition of APA’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM).
This is the first complete revision of the DSM since 1994. As many of you are aware, DSM criteria are used for diagnosis, treatment planning and often times screwing people over. In light of many advances in research since the last revision, many suggested changes have been proposed. This is an important opportunity to offer your comments on the new criteria.

The proposed DSM-5 draft criteria will be available for review and comment at from February 10 to April 20, 2010.
Music:: India.Arie - "headed in the Right Direction"
Mood:: 'GET 'EM!' GET 'EM!
aquenigmatic: (Default)
posted by [personal profile] aquenigmatic at 01:26am on 24/12/2009 under , ,
From an email sent to me from (take away message is "H1N1 Rapid Tests Suck")

Dear Clinician,

Here is the information you requested (sourced from Journal Watch).

H1N1 Rapid Tests: Poor Sensitivity 

Rapid tests for seasonal influenza generally have relatively low sensitivity; their sensitivity for detecting the 2009 H1N1 virus seems even worse. 

Many respiratory pathogens can produce an influenza-like illness. With a sensitive and specific rapid test for influenza, the onset of outbreaks could be established and patients could receive appropriate antiviral treatment. Reverse-transcriptase PCR (RT-PCR) can yield results rapidly and is potentially the most sensitive test, but delays associated with shipping of specimens and laboratory-based testing limit the real-time value of this test. Although widely used in emergency departments and physicians' offices, antigen-based rapid assays have shown a sensitivity of about 50% compared with culture or molecular diagnostic techniques. 

Investigators in Germany recently compared the sensitivity of a commercially available antigen-based rapid test (BinaxNOW Influenza A & B Rapid Test) with that of a real-time RT-PCR assay specific for the hemagglutinin gene of the 2009 H1N1 virus. Of 1838 clinical specimens tested, 221 were confirmed as H1N1 positive by RT-PCR. When 144 of these PCR-positive specimens were evaluated using the rapid-antigen test, results were positive for only 16 (11.1%). 

Comment: There's a lot of bad news here on influenza testing. Although the authors found only 11% sensitivity of the rapid test compared with PCR, the "gold standard" PCR detected the 2009 H1N1 virus in just 12% of 1838 respiratory specimens submitted at a time when this virus was pandemic and probably responsible for most influenza-like illness. The relative sensitivity of the rapid test may have been diminished by the use of frozen-thawed specimens, when the test is intended for use with fresh material. Although we don't know how other, similar assays would have performed, rapid tests appear to be unsuitable for use among patients suspected of having 2009 H1N1 influenza. Clearly, better rapid tests are needed. 

— Stephen G. Baum, MD 

Published in Journal Watch Infectious Diseases October 14, 2009 

Drexler JF et al. Poor clinical sensitivity of rapid antigen test for influenza A pandemic (H1N1) 2009 virus. Emerg Infect Dis 2009 Oct; 15:1662. [Free full-text online] 

Copyright © 2009. Massachusetts Medical Society. All rights reserved

Mood:: 'good' good
location: I put up modest decorations and had 2 Screwdrivers
aquenigmatic: (Default)
posted by [personal profile] aquenigmatic at 09:11am on 18/12/2009 under ,
 My kingdom for a full night's rest. It's been months.
Mood:: 'exhausted' exhausted
aquenigmatic: (Default)
Best Documentary: Silver Award
Tom Girls (USA)

"Tom Girls is the story of two 8 year old girls who meet at a conference for families with transgender children. This was the first time either girl had ever met someone so much like herself, and they instantly became best least for the weekend. Tom Girls first aired on This American Life in February, 2009."

I hadn't heard this on This American Life this past February. It made me miss working in radio, a bit. The gold and bronze winners were equally well-produced.
Mood:: 'curious' curious
Music:: Antony and the Johnsons--For Today I Am a Boy
aquenigmatic: (Default)
posted by [personal profile] aquenigmatic at 11:00pm on 27/11/2009 under , , ,
Blessed moment of clarity and not a moment too soon. After a day of furious research, transcript requests, and bellowing like people whose cat has seized a private moment with the Thanksgiving turkey [snicker], I washed off the shame of not having throttled my academic advisor. The familiar anger didn't hold the usual comfort. Instead, I was exasperated with myself. Careworn and smelling half-prepared dinner is enough without adding the edema underneath a picked scab of anger, condescension, and impotence.

I've been wondering where all my calm went. I worked hard on it for a number of years and had a pretty good veneer of pseudo-calm for the most part. Then I moved here, shit went down on several fronts (much of which was due to my own ignorance and/or clumsiness, let's be fair) and I was glad to say, you know what? They say that the time it takes to get enlightened is the same time it would take for a bird with a scarf flying over a mountain six miles high to wear down the mountain with the scarf, ergo, I'm gonna be where I'm at and fuck all that fake-ass, hooey-hooey, self-righteous bullshit. And that's valid. But. Still. I'm aware of a time when I didn't feel so angry about the small things, a time when I'd trained myself to respond more calmly to challenges. I've been wondering where all that calm went. I haven't felt calm in a while. I couldn't remember why I ever would. As I was disrobing for my shower, I got it again.

It takes too much energy, and that energy is better spent problem-solving. That's all. Anger rarely only hurts the person its directed at. It always damages the person harboring the anger, even if the anger is righteous. Waste of food.

What an aching, bloody relief to remember.

In other relieving news, a sweetheart called me today to hear my voice. That's what she said, and I felt charmed. She's got a knack for doing that when I'm ovulating and have been crying all day, and (though I doubt she's charting my weird 41 day cycle) she keeps perfect time and better company. Thank you, Dear One.

Mood:: 'happy' happy
Music:: Maxwell--"Silently"



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