Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health2016, 13(9), 840; doi:10.3390/ijerph13090840 (registering DOI) - published 23 August 2016 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Information and communications technologies (ICTs) such as mobile survey tools (MSTs) can facilitate field-level data collection to drive improvements in national and international development programs. MSTs allow users to gather and transmit field data in real time, standardize data storage and management, automate routine analyses, and visualize data. Dozens of diverse MST options are available, and users may struggle to select suitable options. We developed a systematic MST Evaluation Framework (EF), based on International Organization for Standardization/International Electrotechnical Commission (ISO/IEC) software quality modeling standards, to objectively assess MSTs and assist program implementers in identifying suitable MST options. The EF is applicable to MSTs for a broad variety of applications. We also conducted an MST user survey to elucidate needs and priorities of current MST users. Finally, the EF was used to assess seven MSTs currently used for water and sanitation monitoring, as a validation exercise. The results suggest that the EF is a promising method for evaluating MSTs.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health2016, 13(9), 838; doi:10.3390/ijerph13090838 (registering DOI) - published 23 August 2016 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Childhood obesity is a major global issue. Its incidence is constantly increasing, thereby offering a threatening public health perspective. The risk of developing the numerous chronic diseases associated with this condition from very early in life is significant. Although complex and multi-factorial, the pathophysiology of obesity recognizes essential roles of nutritional and metabolic aspects. Particularly, several risk factors identified as possible determinants of later-life obesity act within the first 1000 days of life (i.e., from conception to age 2 years). The purpose of this manuscript is to review those key mechanisms for which a role in predisposing children to obesity is supported by the most recent literature. Throughout the development of the human feeding environment, three different stages have been identified: (1) the prenatal period; (2) breast vs. formula feeding; and (3) complementary diet. A deep understanding of the specific nutritional challenges presented within each phase might foster the development of future preventive strategies.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health2016, 13(9), 837; doi:10.3390/ijerph13090837 (registering DOI) - published 23 August 2016 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: A complication of diabetes is diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA), which if left untreated is a life threatening condition. Prompt and accurate diagnosis of DKA is required for the commencement of life saving interventions. Measurements of ketone bodies in DKA have usually been through nitroprusside urine acetoacetate testing. The aim of this systematic review was to examine whether capillary β-hydroxybutyrate (β-OHB) testing is more accurate compared to other diagnostic methods of DKA. The following electronic databases were searched: EBSCO Host, MEDLINE, PSYCHInfo, CINAHL and Science Direct for publications from 1 January 2005 and up to and including 1 January 2016. Inclusion criteria were: Adults 18 years and over and known type 1 or type 2 diabetes. Retrospective and prospective observation studies were included. A total of nine studies met the inclusion criteria. Capillary β-OHB was found to have high sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value and negative predictive value in identifying DKA compared to urinary ketone testing.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health2016, 13(9), 839; doi:10.3390/ijerph13090839 (registering DOI) - published 23 August 2016 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: In the last few decades, there has been an increase in community-based participatory research being conducted within the United States. Recent research has demonstrated that working with local community organizations, interest groups, and individuals can assist in the creation of, and sustainability in, health initiatives, adoption of emergency protocols, and potentially improve health outcomes for at-risk populations. However little research has assessed if communal concerns over environmental contaminants would be confirmed through environmental research. This cross-sectional study collected survey data and performed surface water analysis for heavy metals in a small neighborhood in Houston, TX, which is characterized by industrial sites, unimproved infrastructure, nuisance flooding, and poor air quality. Surveys were completed with 109 residents of the Manchester neighborhood. Water samples were taken from thirty zones within the neighborhood and assessed for arsenic (As), barium (Ba), cadmium (Cd), chromium (Cr), lead (Pb), selenium (Se), silver (Ag), and mercury (Hg). Survey results showed that the vast majority of all respondents were concerned over proximity to industry and waste facilities, as well as exposure to standing surface water. Barium was discovered in every sample and many of the zones showed alarming levels of certain metals. For example, one zone, two blocks from a public park, showed levels of arsenic at 180 (μg/L), barium at 3296 (μg/L), chromium at 363 (μg/L), lead at 1448 (μg/L), and mercury at 10 (μg/L). These findings support the hypothesis that neighborhood members are aware of the issues affecting their community and can offer researchers valuable assistance in every stage of study design and execution.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health2016, 13(8), 836; doi:10.3390/ijerph13080836 - published 22 August 2016 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: This paper explores well-being and diabetes management in women with type 1 diabetes mellitus (DM) in early pregnancy and investigates associations among perceived well-being, diabetes management, and maternal characteristics. Questionnaires were answered by 168 Swedish women. Correlation analyses were conducted with Spearman’s correlation coefficient (rs). The women reported relatively high scores of self-efficacy in diabetes management (SWE-DES-10: 3.91 (0.51)) and self-perceived health (excellent (6.5%), very good (42.3%), good (38.7%), fair (11.3%) and poor (1.2%)). Moderate scores were reported for general well-being (WBQ-12: 22.6 (5.7)) and sense of coherence (SOC-13: 68.9 (9.7), moderate/low scores for hypoglycemia fear (SWE-HFS 26.6 (11.8)) and low scores of diabetes-distress (SWE-PAID-20 27.1 (15.9)). A higher capability of self-efficacy in diabetes management showed positive correlations with self-perceived health (rs = −0.41, p < 0.0001) and well-being (rs = 0.34, p < 0.0001) as well as negative correlations with diabetes distress (rs = −0.51, p < 0.0001) and hypoglycemia worries (rs = −0.27, p = 0.0009). Women with HbA1c levels of ≤48 mmL/mol scored higher in the subscales “goal achievement” in SWE-DES (p = 0.0028) and “comprehensibility” in SOC (p = 0.016). Well-being and diabetes management could be supported by strengthening the women’s capability to achieve glycemic goals and their comprehensibility in relation to the treatment. Further studies are needed to test this.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health2016, 13(8), 835; doi:10.3390/ijerph13080835 - published 20 August 2016 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Soil erosion has become a serious problem in recent decades due to unhalted trends of unsustainable land use practices. Assessment of soil erosion is a prominent tool in planning and conservation of soil and water resource ecosystems. The Universal Soil Loss Equation (USLE) was applied to Nyabarongo River Catchment that drains about 8413.75 km2 (33%) of the total Rwanda coverage and a small part of the Southern Uganda (about 64.50 km2) using Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Remote Sensing technologies. The estimated total annual actual soil loss was approximately estimated at 409 million tons with a mean erosion rate of 490 t·ha−1·y−1 (i.e., 32.67 mm·y−1). The cropland that occupied 74.85% of the total catchment presented a mean erosion rate of 618 t·ha−1·y−1 (i.e., 41.20 mm·y−1) and was responsible for 95.8% of total annual soil loss. Emergency soil erosion control is required with a priority accorded to cropland area of 173,244 ha, which is extremely exposed to actual soil erosion rate of 2222 t·ha−1·y−1 (i.e., 148.13 mm·y−1) and contributed to 96.2% of the total extreme soil loss in the catchment. According to this study, terracing cultivation method could reduce the current erosion rate in cropland areas by about 78%. Therefore, the present study suggests the catchment management by constructing check dams, terracing, agroforestry and reforestation of highly exposed areas as suitable measures for erosion and water pollution control within the Nyabarongo River Catchment and in other regions facing the same problems.