Tuesday, September 3, 2013

A Few More Interesting New Papers

Devakumar D, Brotherton H, Halbert J, Clarke A, Prost A, Hall J. Taking ethical photos of children for medical and research purposes in low-resource settings: an exploratory qualitative study. BMC Medical Ethics 2013, 14:27 doi:10.1186/1472-6939-14-27
Background: Photographs are commonly taken of children in medical and research contexts. With the increased availability of photographs through the internet, it is increasingly important to consider their potential for negative consequences and the nature of any consent obtained. In this research we explore the issues around photography in low-resource settings, in particular concentrating on the challenges in gaining informed consent.
Methods: Exploratory qualitative study using focus group discussions involving medical doctors and researchers who are currently working or have recently worked in low-resource settings with children.
Results: Photographs are a valuable resource but photographers need to be mindful of how they are taken and used. Informed consent is needed when taking photographs but there were a number of problems in doing this, such as different concepts of consent, language and literacy barriers and the ability to understand the information. There was no consensus as to the form that the consent should take. Participants thought that while written consent was preferable, the mode of consent should depend on the situation.
Conclusions: Photographs are a valuable but potentially harmful resource, thus informed consent is required but its form may vary by context. We suggest applying a hierarchy of dissemination to gauge how detailed the informed consent should be. Care should be taken not to cause harm, with the rights of the child being the paramount consideration.

Cramer H, Lauche R, Langhorst J, Paul A, Michalson A, Dobos G. Predictors of yoga use among internal medicine patients. BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine 2013, 13:172 doi:10.1186/1472-6882-13-172
Background: Yoga seems to be an effective means to cope with a variety of internal medicine conditions. While characteristics of yoga users have been investigated in the general population, little is known about predictors of yoga use and barriers to yoga use in internal medicine patients. The aim of this cross-sectional analysis was to identify sociodemographic, clinical, and psychological predictors of yoga use among internal medicine patients.
Methods: A cross-sectional analysis was conducted among all patients being referred to a Department of Internal and Integrative Medicine during a 3-year period. It was assessed whether patients had ever used yoga for their primary medical complaint, the perceived benefit, and the perceived harm of yoga practice. Potential predictors of yoga use including sociodemographic characteristics, health behavior, internal medicine diagnosis, general health status, mental health, satisfaction with health, and health locus of control were assessed; and associations with yoga use were tested using multiple logistic regression analysis. Odds ratios (OR) with 95% confidence intervals (CI) were calculated for significant predictors.
Results: Of 2486 participants, 303 (12.19%) reported having used yoga for their primary medical complaint. Of those, 184 (60.73%) reported benefits and 12 (3.96%) reported harms due to yoga practice. Compared to yoga non-users, yoga users were more likely to be 50–64 years old (OR = 1.45; 95%CI = 1.05-2.01; P = 0.025); female (OR = 2.45; 95%CI = 1.45-4.02; P < 0.001); and college graduates (OR = 1.61; 95%CI = 1.14-2.27; P = 0.007); and less likely to currently smoke (OR = 0.61; 95%CI = 0.39-0.96; P = 0.031). Manifest anxiety (OR = 1.47; 95%CI = 1.06-2.04; P = 0.020); and high internal health locus of control (OR = 1.92; 95%CI = 1.38-2.67; P < 0.001) were positively associated with yoga use, while high external-fatalistic health locus of control (OR = 0.66; 95%CI = 0.47-0.92; P = 0.014) was negatively associated with yoga use.
Conclusion: Yoga was used for their primary medical complaint by 12.19% of an internal integrative medicine patient population and was commonly perceived as beneficial. Yoga use was not associated with the patients’ specific diagnosis but with sociodemographic factors, mental health, and health locus of control. To improve adherence to yoga practice, it should be considered that male, younger, and anxious patients and those with low internal health locus of control might be less intrinsically motivated to start yoga.

Kikukawa M, Nabeta H, Ono M, Emura S, Oda Y, Koizumi S, Sakemi T. The characteristics of a good clinical teacher as perceived by resident physicians in Japan: a qualitative study. BMC Medical Education 2013, 13:100 doi:10.1186/1472-6920-13-100

Background: It is not known whether the characteristics of a good clinical teacher as perceived by resident physicians are the same in Western countries as in non-Western countries including Japan. The objective of this study was to identify the characteristics of a good clinical teacher as perceived by resident physicians in Japan, a non-Western country, and to compare the results with those obtained in Western countries.
Methods: Data for this qualitative research were collected using semi-structured focus group interviews. Focus group transcripts were independently analyzed and coded by three authors. Residents were recruited by maximum variation sampling until thematic saturation was achieved.
Results: Twenty-three residents participated in five focus group interviews regarding the perceived characteristics of a good clinical teacher in Japan. The 197 descriptions of characteristics that were identified were grouped into 30 themes. The most commonly identified theme was “provided sufficient support”, followed by “presented residents with chances to think”, “provided feedback”, and “provided specific indications of areas needing improvement”. Using Sutkin’s main categories (teacher, physician, and human characteristics), 24 of the 30 themes were categorized as teacher characteristics, 6 as physician characteristics, and none as human characteristics.
Conclusions: “Medical knowledge” of teachers was not identified as a concern of residents, and “clinical competence of teachers” was not emphasized, whereas these were the two most commonly recorded themes in Sutkin’s study. Our results suggest that Japanese and Western resident physicians place emphasis on different characteristics of their teachers. We speculate that such perceptions are influenced by educational systems, educational settings, and culture. Globalization of medical education is important, but it is also important to consider differences in educational systems, local settings, and culture when evaluating clinical teachers.


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