Accepted 10 August 2011.
Introduction Cervical cancer (CC) is the second most prevalent female cancer in Malaysia. Almost 70% of its’ causal factors are attributable to oncogenic human papillomavirus (HPV) types 16, 18 and other risk factors. HPV genotypes distributions are also noted to differ by geographical area.
Methods This was cross sectional study conducted in 2007, to determine the influencing factors of HPV positivity and prevalence of HPV infections among patients with cervical cancer in Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia Medical Centre (UKMMC). Patients’ paraffin-embedded cervical tissues kept in the Pathology Department from 1999 to 2007 were randomly selected. A total of 81 medical records with complete information were chosen as samples and patients were contacted for consent. Tissue samples were further derived for PCR DNA for HPV genotyping. Analyses included descriptive statistics; bivariate χ2 test and correlation were used to determine relationship between factors and HPV positivity. Significance level of less than 0.05 was taken as statistically significant.
Results Mean age of cancer diagnosis was at 52 ± 12.2 years. Women of Chinese ethnicity was the highest ethnicity to be HPV positive at 65.4% and squamous cell carcinoma was more commonly found (59.3%) compared with other types of cancers. The prevalence of HPV positivity was 92.6% with type 16 being the most common (74.1%), followed by type 33 (30.9%) and 18 (22.2%). Multiple HPV infections were a common finding at 54.3%. Factors thought to influence positivity i.e. age of intercourse, number of sexual partners, number of parity, smoking status of patients and their partners, oral contraceptive usage, presence of chronic illnesses and cancer stage were not significantly associated with HPV positivity. Increased CC severity level was not associated with increased number of HPV infections (Pearson correlation 0.58; p =0.607).
Conclusions High HPV positivity at 92.6% was found among ICC patients. Factors thought to influence HPV positivity were not significant. The top three HPV genotypes were type 16 followed by type 33 and 18. However, local women HPV serotypes findings need to be replicated in a larger population sample.
Accepted 23 August 2011.
Introduction There is a strong correlation between stress and the quality of care provided by informal carers. In this regard, an accurate understanding about factors
contributing to stress among informal carers is crucial in order to find appropriate interventions to solve their problems.
Methods A pilot study was conducted in October 2009 in the Klang Valley area, to test the instrument liability in the local context. In-depth interviews were conducted with two informal caregivers who are providing full-time care for their chronically-ill family members.
Results Informal caregivers face multiple types of stress. A variety of factors such as financial problems, an unsupportive community, fatigue, the unavailability of social services to assist them and their inability to accept the fact that their loved ones are terminally ill, contribute to their stress.
Conclusions Differences in factors contribute to stress, and lead to the adoption of different styles of coping strategies: emotion and problem focused coping.
Accepted 07 August 2011.
Introduction Chronic kidney disease (CKD) has emerged as a major medical illness that drew the attention of the community. This research focused on the prevalence of five contributing factors to the progression of CKD, namely blood pressure control, glycaemic control, lipid control, smoking and alcohol intake, and explored significant association between these variables. This was a crosssectional study that examined the progression of CKD based on the worsening of CKD stages.
Methods This study was conducted among CKD patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus who attended Nephorology Clinic, UKMMC from April to May 2011. The progression of CKD was observed for 3 consecutive visits with 3 months intervals between the visits. Information regarding demographic data and social history were obtained through face-to-face interview, followed by case note review of the blood results. Data collected was analysed using SPSS version 19.0.
Results A total of 201 respondents were investigated, which included 39.3% (n=79) female and 60.7% (n=122) male. The mean age for the respondents was 66.9 years old (±SD 9.00). Among the respondents, 71.5% had poor glycaemic control; 59.7% had poor blood pressure control; 65.2% had poor lipid control; 19.9% smoked and 3.5% consumed alcohol. There was poor correlation, there were statistically significant association between systolic blood pressure control with the glomerular filtration rate (GFR) (p=0.001; r=-0.229). From this research, high systolic blood pressure was associated with low GFR, which indicated poor kidney function and resulted in progression of CKD.
Conclusions This study has clearly demonstrated that the control of blood pressure was essential in delaying the progression of CKD.
Introduction More school children were referred for learning difficutly (LD), especially after the introduction of LINUS sccreening programme by Ministry of Education Malaysia.
Aims To study the clinical diagnosis and non-verbal ability of primary-one school children with LD after paediatric assessment, as well as associated behavioural issues and socio-economincal background.
Methods Assessment findings by Paediatricians and Naglieri Non-Verbal Ability Test®(NNAT®) results of all primary-one school children referred in year 2010 with LD were studied retrospectively.
Results Ninety-three children were included (62.4% male), and 72.0% of them failed the LINUS screening programme. The commonest diagnoses were Borderline Intellectual Disability (ID, 37.6%) and Mild ID (19.4%). Other diagnoses included Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD, 11.8%), Specific Learning Disability (SLD, 10.8%), Autistic Spectrum Disorder (n = 5) and Severe Language Disorder (n = 3). Mean NNAT scores were 84.6 ± 11.8 (n = 85), of which 9.4% children scored less than 70 (
A prospective study done In al Zaafaranya General Hospital in Baghdad/Iraq In the period between April 2003 and February 2007. Ninety two patients admitted to the surgical wards diagnosed as Intestinal obstruction. The aim is to find out the possible common conditions resulting in causing this common surgical emergency. Also to compare the provisional clinical diagnosis about ischemic obstruction and the definitive post operative diagnosis. To encourage post graduate students to use their clinical abilities with the few laboratory and radiological facilities available needed to decide about the management of those patients.
Primary health care is an approach to health and a spectrum of services beyond the traditional health care system while primary care is just one element within PHC that focuses on health care services. The present status of PHC in Malaysia and the strides it has made in uplifting the health status of the nation is described. The challenges that the Malaysia health system are facing have necessitated a review of the structure of the whole health system and reforms in PHC will ensue in due course. The concept of 1Care, the proposed re-structuring of the health system, is discussed with emphasis on the reform in the PHC delivery system. The reforms are aimed at addressing three main concerns on seamless integration of care especially for the management of chronic diseases, ensuring universal coverage and responsiveness of the health system in the face of increasing client expectations and patient safety. The opportunity for macro reform to improve the health of Malaysians by developing a sustainable and high performing health care system is being seized by the Ministry of Health in 1Care. The micro reforms are discussed as regards to increasing access to services, development of primary health care teams to deliver comprehensive PHC, the application of ICT, the renewed emphasis on health promotion & prevention activities and a renewed focus on community empowerment and participation. Support in terms of human resource, governance & funding models, capacity building in monitoring & evaluation as well as change management to affect the reforms are identified. The paper concludes with lessons learnt from other countries and the importance of systemic reform for a well functioning health delivery system.
Developmental disabilities in young children are common, and the prevalence is estimated as high as 0.1-1.75% in the children population for each disabilities. With increasing awareness and health expectation, more children with Developmental disabilities are presenting to health care professionals, and at earlier age. Literatures also suggested the importance of early intervention programme in determining the outcome of this group of children. Therefore, it is vital for health professionals who have direct contact with young children are competent in detecting children with possible Developmental disabilities, and have the basic knowledge about some of the common disorders in order to discuss the issues with the parents. It is also important to work with the various resources available in the local community, such as non-governmental organisations for children with special needs, schools offering special education programmes and inclusive classes, and the allied health who provide cares to this group of young children and their family. A lot of information are also available online, and may be offered to help parents gaining more understanding regarding these Developmental disabilities.
Accepted 8 February 2012.
Introduction Social norms, though an important contributing factor of adolescent smoking in developed countries, has not been extensively studied in Malaysia. The objective of this study was to determine the association between certain perceived norms regarding smoking with smoking status among Malaysian secondary school students in Kota Tinggi, Johor.
Methods Data were collected from 2311 respondents consisting of 1379 male and 923 female secondary school students in Kota Tinggi district via a self administered questionnaire. Five perceived norms regarding smoking were assessed, namely: perceived peer smoking prevalence, perceived parental reaction towards adolescent smoking, perceived public perception of adolescent smoking, ever noticed peers smoking inside and outside school and perceived enforcement of anti-smoking policy in school and their association with smoking status. Multiple logistic regressions controlling for gender, peer smoking and family smoking was performed.
Results Of the five perceived norms, four were associated with smoking status, (perceived peer smoking prevalence (p
In July 2010 Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) and Niigata University (NU) signed a memorandum of agreement to continue collaboration in joint planning and implementation of education, research and practice services in the field of medicine.This collaboration is also a good opportunity for Doctor of Public Health (DRPH) postgraduate candidates to gain experience on the practice of public health in handling public health issues, planning the healthcare facilities, delivering a quality public health services, enforcing public health policies/regulations and finally learn about the health systems in general at other countries especially from developed country like Japan. Experiencing Health Care and Culture in Niigata, Japan.
Accepted 1 March 2012.
Introduction Medical ethics is a system of moral principles that apply values and judgments to the practice of medicine. As a scholarly discipline, medical ethics encompasses its practical application in clinical settings as well as work on its history, philosophy, theology, and sociology. The medical profession has long subscribed to a body of ethical statements developed primarily for the benefit of the patient. A physician must recognize responsibility to patients first and foremost, as well as to society, to other health professionals, and to self. This paper presents some information regarding medical ethics, including the values and principles of ethical conduct. Later the requirements of consent form is presented to guide the researchers before conducting a study.
Accepted 11 August 2011.
Introduction Despite of its importance for preventing fatal and severe injuries in an event of a crash, limited studies were conducted to find out the status of seatbelt use among rear passengers in Malaysia. This study was conducted to the determine seatbelt use among rear passengers in Malaysia in conjunction with the introduction of the rear seatbelt law that took effect on 1st January 2009.
Methods Two methods were used; the roadside observations and surveys. A total of 4180 rear passengers were observed during the road side observation and 793 rear passengers were interviewed in the survey.
Results About 41.8 % (95 % CI: 38.3, 45.4) of rear passengers interviewed reported that they “Always/Often’ wore safety belts, while roadside observation recorded slightly lower rate (36.2 % [95 % CI: 34.8, 37.7]). Based on the roadside observation method, male rear passengers were more likely to use rear seatbelts as compared to female rear passengers (with Odd Ratio: 1.17 (95 % CI: 1.03, 1.33)). Both methods consistently reported that rear passengers of Multipurpose Vehicle (MPV)/Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV) (survey method “always wear”: 39.3 %, Odd Ratio: 2.02 [95 % CI: 1.13, 3.61], roadside observation method: 51.9 %, Odd Ratio: 2.23 [95 % CI: 1.89, 2.62]) were two times more likely to wear seatbelts as compared to rear passengers of a car.
Conclusions The two research methods indicate rear passengers in Malaysia were consistently having low seatbelt usage rate. As the rear seatbelt advocacy and enforcement programme are new in Malaysia, efforts to advocate rear seatbelt use should be strengthened. The changes in rear seatbelt usage rate need to be tracked regularly and as an alternative to roadside observation method, interview survey method could be used to measure the seatbelt usage rate and to identify the reason for not using safety belt among rear passengers.
Accepted 21 July 2011.
Introduction The extensive and intensive use of pesticides in agricultural practices has exposed farmers to various hazards resulting in varying degrees of health
Methods We conducted a cross-sectional study among paddy farmers in Sabak Bernam district, Malaysia. The objective of this study was to gather baseline information on chlorpyrifos blood level and its relationship with pesticides exposure symptoms.
Results We detected chlorpyrifos in farmers’ blood in 7 percent of the respondents, with mean 7.29 nanogram per millilitre blood (sd 5.84 nanogram per millilitre). The percentage of farmers who experienced at least one pesticide exposure symptoms was 75 percent. However, we found no significant association between chlorpyrifos blood level and its exposure symptoms. The farmers had low scores on safe practice of pesticide use even though they have high marks on knowledge and attitude. We found no significant association between the scores on knowledge, attitude and practice on pesticide use and the chlorpyrifos blood level.
Conclusions The presence of pesticide exposure symptoms proved that most of the farmers were exposed to hazardous effects of pesticides. Specific trainings on safe use and handling of pesticides should be given on regular basis to these farmers to ensure they are protected from hazardous effects of pesticides exposure.
OBJECTIVE. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a one of the major cause of death and disability worldwide. This study aimed to compare the quality of life (QOL), Activity of Daily Living (ADL), Pulmonary Function Test (PFT) and general health symptoms pre and after hospital-based respiratory physiotherapy program among COPD patients. METHODS. Pre and post intervention study was conducted between January and July 2010. A total of 54 subjects aged between 30 to 40 years old were recruited for this study using universal sampling method from Alzawia Teaching Hospital, Libya. Data collected were socio-demographic data, QOL (before and after the intervention) using the Short Form-36 (SF-36) questionnaire, ADL using the Barthel Index and the General Health Symptoms.
RESULTS.. The mean SF-36 score for QOL is 30.13 (SD = 8.06) and 63.46 (SD = 13.53) before and after the physiotherapy respectively (with the p <0.0001). Patients’ Activity of Daily Living mean scores are 70.18, (SD = 16.50) and mean = 88.89 (SD = 13.28) before and after program (p< 0.0001). The general medical condition mean score after respiratory physiotherapy is 3.72 as compared to 4.96 before the respiratory physiotherapy (p< 0.0001). Pulmonary Function Test shows improvement in actual/predicted FEV1 ratio in all 54 cases with mean improvement from 55.85 before to 81.67 after the pulmonary physiotherapy (with the p <0.0001).
CONCLUSION. Hospital based respiratory physiotherapy program had significantly improved QOL, pulmonary function and activities of daily living among the subjects.
Accepted 13 January 2012.
Introduction The purpose of this study is to explore the reasons of Shisha smoking among teenagers in Ipoh, Perak.
Methods Data was collected using in-depth face to face interview. Purposive convenient sampling was used to select volunteer respondents from one of the Shisha restaurant located at Ipoh. The interviews were conducted for 15-20 minutes, recorded using video tape. The data obtained was transcribed and coded for the purpose of thematic analysis.
Results All respondents were influenced by peers in their first attempt in Shisha smoking. Other reasons attracting them to continue smoking Shisha include appealing smell and the flavoured taste of Shisha, easy to access, perceived that Shisha was not addictive and its’ cheaper price. In terms of perception on health risk, all respondents believed that Shisha was less harmful compared to cigarette smoking.
Conclusions More educational programme, health talk about risk of Shisha should be developed and conducted to rectify the misconception about health risk of Shisha smoking. The target population should be focus on male teenagers who smoke Shisha in order to control the widespread Shisha smoking in Malaysia.
Medication adherence is very important for the effective treatment or control of various health problems, including chronic disease like diabetes mellitus (DM). However, medication non-adherence among diabetic patients on follow-up treatment is still a global health problem. This study aimed to identify factors associated with medication adherence and to determine methods on how it could be improved. A cross-sectional study was conducted on medication adherence among Malays, Iban and Melanau ethnic groups in Kota Samarahan and Sarikei, Sarawak using the Health Belief Model framework. Interviews with questionnaires, which were tested for its validity and reliability using the Cronbach’s Alpha, were conducted to collect data on the respondent’s socio-demographic and economic characteristics, and health beliefs of 442 respondents. Data was analyzed using SPSS version 17.0 for frequency distribution, measures of central tendencies, significance testing and logistic regression. The medication adherence rates were low in terms of all the treatment indicators such as amount of medication (31.7%), frequency (38.9%), duration (26%), and follow-up treatment (24.2%). The respondent’s socio-economic and economic characteristics have statistically significant association with medication adherence. The respondents adhered towards medication because they believed in its benefits. They also took their medication because they believed in the severity of DM and their susceptibility to its serious complications. The cues to action (medication taking) such as worrying about their socio-economic well-being, effectiveness of medication, and health campaign on diabetic control have influenced medication adherence. However, forgetfulness, distance of clinic, and costs of transport have caused medication non-adherence. The respondent's health beliefs in the benefits of taking medication, perceived severity and susceptibility to DM and its serious complications have contributed towards medication adherence. Their concerns about the socio-economic well-being, effectiveness of medication, and health campaign on diabetic control were positive cues to medication taking behavior. Therefore, modifying the respondent's related health beliefs and reinforcing the positive cues to actions are the relevant intervention strategies that could be used in improving medication adherence among diabetic patients.
The aim of the Fourth Millennium Developmental Goal is to reduce mortality among children less than 5 years by two thirds between 1990 and 2015. Efforts are more focus on improving children's health. The aim of this study was to describe the trend of stillbirth and neonatal deaths in University Kebangsaan Malaysia Medical Centre from 2004 to 2010. A retrospective cross-sectional study was conducted using hospital data on perinatal mortality and monthly census delivery statistics. There were 45,277 deliveries with 526 stillbirths and neonatal deaths. More than half of the stillborn cases were classified as normally formed macerated stillbirth and prematurity was common in neonatal deaths. The trend of SB and NND was found fluctuating in this study. However, by using proportionate test comparing rate, there was a transient significant decline of stillbirth but not neonatal deaths rates between 2004 and 2006. On the other hand, the neonatal deaths rate showed significant increment from 2006 to 2008. When both mortality rates were compared using proportionate test, from the start of the study, year 2004 with end of the study, year 2010, there was no significant decline noted. Trends of stillbirth and neonatal death rates in University Kebangsaan Malaysia Medical Centre within 7 years study period did not show the expected outcome as in Millennium Developmental Goal of two thirds reduction.
The aim of this study was to determine the profile of patients referred to a specialist oral medicine and oral pathology unit in Kuala Lumpur by reviewing clinical dental records received in Oral Pathology Diagnostic Service (OPDS) in Faculty of Dentistry, UKM from 2001 until 2010. A total of 547 archival biopsy clinical dental records were reviewed and analysed using SPSS version 17.0. Oral and maxillofacial diseases were frequently seen in female (1.3:1), young adults (30.0%) of Malay ethnicity (64.6%). Most of the acquired specimens were from dental specialists (n=451, 84.8%), particularly from oral and maxillofacial surgeons (OMFS) (n=349, 63.8%) compared to general dental practitioners (GDPs) (n=81, 14.8%). Almost all of the biopsy specimens were of soft tissue origin (n=462, 84.4%), derived from lining mucosa (n=197, 36.0%) and were biopsied excisionally (n=325, 59.4%) more often than by incisional biopsy (n=207, 37.8%). A large proportion of the oral and maxillofacial diseases were of reactive (n=188, 34.4%) and inflammatory (n=121, 22.1%) cause. Tumours are mainly benign (n=69, 12.6%) with only small cases are malignant (n=34, 6.2%). The most common histological diagnoses were accounted by mucocele (n=56, 10.2%), pyogenic granuloma (n=47, 8.6%), fibroepithelial polyp (n=38, 6.9%), radicular cyst (n=33, 6.0%) and periapical granuloma (n=29, 5.3%). This study characterizes the clinical profile of patients seen in our oral medicine and oral pathology unit. Present findings can be used as a reference to the clinicians and pathologists in effective patient management and organization in the future.
To date, there has been no systematic research that investigates the rural community awareness and attitudes towards pandemic influenza H1N1 and its prevention measures in the context of Sarawak. There is also no systematic study about whether the initiatives to educate the public undertaken by the government and other agencies have empowered the rural communities to practice an effective self-care within the context of community, that assist to curb the potential spread of this disease. Our research aims to address these limitations. In this paper, we report a survey finding about the awareness and attitudes of the Serian community with regard to this area of research interest. We also investigate the relevant sources of information that the community relies on in understanding about the influenza and how it can spread. Overall, the outcomes of the survey reveal that a majority of our respondents has a relatively low level of knowledge and awareness particularly about the characteristics of the illness and how H1N1 virus can transmit. With regard to prevention measures, a majority of them reported good understanding and awareness about the effective self-care practices that can help to curb the potential spread of the influenza. The top five sources to obtain information about the influenza were: information from family, relatives, friends or neighbours; radio; TV; newspapers; and government health talk seminar or campaigns. The research outcomes can offer pragmatic contributions that can benefit the health campaigners and policy makers.
Dengue is a disease propagated by vectors namely Aedes spp. mosquitoes. One of the effective approaches to control dengue is through integrated vector management and intervention programs. COMBI or Communication for Behavioral Impact is a strategic approach to control the Aedes population as well as dengue cases. This study was conducted at Taman Desa Kolej, Nilai, Negeri Sembilan, an suburban residential area to determine the effectiveness of COMBI, by using questionnaire and entomological survey as well as implementation of an intervention program. We carried out activities such as the establishment of COMBI promoter team, clean up events, talk shows with the residential community and distributed pamphlets containing information about dengue. Results indicated significant difference (p
Osteoporosis-related fractures have been recognized as a major health problem, particularly in the elderly with a high morbidity and mortality rate. The aims of the study were to identify knowledge and perception toward calcium intake among students at UiTM and to explore the differences between genders in dietary calcium intake. A cross sectional study was conducted through 336 students aged 18 to 34 years old. The participants were randomly chosen from the student’s enrolment list. A modified questionnaire was used to obtain the knowledge and perception of the participants. More than half of the participants have low knowledge regarding dietary calcium intake (58.6%), positive view towards the benefits of calcium intake and low perception towards the barrier of calcium intake. Chi square analysis showed a significant difference between male and female for knowledge (p=0.034) and barrier (p=0.002) for calcium intake. Intervention programs should be adopted to increase the knowledge among young adults to improve their health and prevent risk factors. So, health education specifically on calcium intake will be very useful to improve the knowledge and behavior of students.