Abstract: Approximately 12% of women living in the United States will be diagnosed with breast cancer during their lifetimes. While all women face formidable challenges posed by the threat of living with or at increased risk for breast cancer, those of Ashkenazi Jewish descent face additional challenges owing to higher BRCA1/2 mutation prevalence in this population. Amidst calls for population-based screening for hereditary breast cancer risk, much can be learned from the experiences of Jewish women about their needs. The present study is a secondary analysis of psychoeducational program satisfaction and evaluation data previously collected by a community organization dedicated to serving women of all Jewish backgrounds facing, or at risk for, breast cancer. Among respondents (n = 347), over one-third were referred to the organization by family or friends, most often after a cancer crisis. Of the information and support resources offered, the greatest level of engagement occurred with the one-on-one peer support and health care symposia resources. Respondents endorsed high levels of satisfaction with the programs and services, and a strong desire to give back to the community. These data suggest that culturally-relevant information and support services for Jewish women could be scaled-up for larger dissemination to meet the anticipated needs in this special population.
Abstract: The prevalence of Gestational Diabetes Mellitus (GDM) is increasing worldwide. Controlling blood sugar levels is fundamental to the management of GDM. Current practice in Norway includes patients registering blood sugar levels in a booklet and receiving verbal and/or written health information. A smartphone application may provide patients individually targeted and easily available advice to control blood sugar levels. The aim of this paper is to document the process of designing and developing a smartphone application (the Pregnant+ app) that automatically transfers blood sugar levels from the glucometer and has information about healthy eating and physical activity. This formative research included expert-group discussions among health professionals, researchers and experts in data privacy and security. User-involvement studies were conducted to discuss prototypes of the app. Results indicated that the content of the application should be easy to understand given the varying degree of patients’ literacy and in line with the information they receive at clinics. The final version of the app incorporated behavior change techniques such as self-monitoring and cues to action. Results from the first round of interactions show the importance of involving expert groups and patients when developing a mobile health-care device.
Abstract: Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) is a major cause of morbidity and mortality with ever increasing prevalence in the United States and worldwide. There is growing body of evidence suggesting that mitochondrial dysfunction secondary to oxidative stress plays a critical role in the pathogenesis of T2DM. Coenzyme Q10 is an important micronutrient acting on the electron transport chain of the mitochondria with two major functions: (1) synthesis of adenosine triphosphate (ATP); and (2) a potent antioxidant. Deficiency in coenzyme Q10 is often seen in patients with T2DM. Whether restoration of coenzyme Q10 will help alleviate oxidative stress, preserve mitochondrial function, and thus improve glycemic control in T2DM is unclear. This article reviews the relationships among oxidative stress, mitochondrial dysfunction, and T2DM and examines the evidence for potential use of coenzyme Q10 as a supplement for the treatment of T2DM.
Abstract: Objectives: There is ongoing concern that psychiatric medication management appointments add little value to care. The present study attempted to address this concern by capturing depressed patients’ views and opinions about the value of psychiatric medication management appointments. Methods: Seventy-eight semi-structured interviews were performed with white and African American depressed patients post medication management appointments. These interviews tapped patients’ views and opinions about the value of attending medication management appointments. Analysis: An iterative thematic analysis was performed. Findings: Patients reported greater appointment value when appointments included obtaining medications, discussing the need for medication changes or dose adjustments, and discussing the impact of medications on their illness. Additionally, greater appointment value was perceived by patients when there were non-medical conversations about life issues, immediate outcomes from the appointment such as motivation to continue in care, and specific qualities of providers that were appealing to patients. Conclusions: Patients’ perceived value of psychiatric medication management appointments is complex. Though important patient outcomes are obtaining medicine and perceiving improvement in their mental health, there are other valued appointment and provider factors. Some of these other valued factors embedded within medication management appointments could have therapeutic properties. These findings have implications for future clinical research and service delivery.
Abstract: This study sought to understand the context in which Psycho-Spiritual Integrative Therapy (PSIT), a group intervention, promotes varying degrees of spiritual growth and quality of life change in breast cancer survivors. A secondary aim was to explore the relationship between spiritual well-being (SWB) and Quality of Life (QL) in PSIT participants. A qualitative, multiple case analysis was undertaken to examine the experiences of two participants with the highest change scores on the Functional Assessment of Chronic Illness Therapy Spiritual Well-Being Scale-Expanded Version (FACIT-Sp-Ex) and two participants with among the lowest change scores on this measure. The participant factors thought to contribute to SWB and QL changes included utilization of metacognitive psychological skills and spiritual/religious frameworks, while PSIT factors included application of PSIT core intervention components, cognitive restructuring, group dynamics, and the role of the facilitator. The nature and extent of participant use of spiritual practices appeared to shape the relationship between SWB and OL. The findings suggest directions for future research to investigate potential moderators and mediators of treatment efficacy of PSIT specifically, as well as other psycho-spiritual interventions for cancer survivors more generally.
Abstract: The development of a body of knowledge, gained through research and theory building, is one hallmark of a profession. This paper presents the “Partnering with Patients Model of Nursing Interventions”, providing direction towards how complex nursing interventions can be developed, tested and subsequently adopted into practice. Coalescence of understanding of patient-centred care, the capabilities approach and the concept of complex healthcare interventions led to the development of the model assumptions and concepts. Application of the model to clinical practice is described, including presentation of a case study, and areas for future research including understanding both patients’ and nurses’ perceptions and experiences when the model is in use, and testing the effect of nursing interventions based on the model are recommended.