Recent innovations in the treatment of schizophrenia reflect a growing trend towards community-based care. Malaysia had in the past few years attempted to deinstitutionalise mental patients in the mental hospitals. Therefore it is important to conduct research to compare the two groups of schizophrenia patients (community-based patients against chronic hospitalised patients) to ascertain if deinstitutionalisation has been beneficial. The main objective of the study was to compare levels of depression and function in community-based patients against chronic hospitalised patients as depression is prevalent among schizophrenia patients. This study was cross sectional in nature where data was collected from 51 inpatients in Hospital Bahagia Ulu Kinta (HBUK) and 23 community-based patients. Calgary Depression Scale for Schizophrenia (CDSS) and Global Assessment of Functioning scale (GAF) were the assessment tools used. Community-based patients were found to have significantly lower scores in the CDSS scale (1.96) as compared to chronic hospitalised patients (4.04); p < 0.01). They also showed higher functional capability between community-based and hospitalised patients respectively (74.04 vs 57.92) respectively. (p < 0.001). Community services appeared to be more effective than long stay in-patient services in preventing depression and promoting better functional levels.
Prevalence and signs and symptoms of menopause have been extensively studied among Malaysian women but no one had investigated the level of knowledge and perception of menopause. This study aimed to examine the knowledge and perception of menopause among young to middle aged women (15 to 49 years old). A cross-sectional survey using 20-items questionnaire was conducted in three randomly chosen districts in Federal Territory, Kuala Lumpur. Women in this survey were aware of the meaning of the term menopause and its symptoms. However, the majority lacked comprehensive understanding about the health risks associated with menopause. Commonly cited sources of knowledge were magazines and family members. Lack of official sources for accurate information on menopause was reported. Communication with health care personnel regarding menopause was uncommon. An exploration into respondents' perceptions on menopause revealed that the majority displayed positive thinking towards menopause. Young respondents seemed to have better perception regarding menopause compared to middle aged women. Although the women had good knowledge about menopause, they expressed feelings of sadness and nervousness upon the approach of their own menopause. Our data provides insight on the knowledge and perception of menopause that will guide future public health initiatives for premenopausal women in order for them to cope better when approaching this stage of life cycle.
Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is one of the commonest systemic autoimmune diseases that can present with variable clinical manifestations. Intravenous Immunoglobulin (IVIG) has been used as a salvage therapy for severe lupus with encouraging results though there is yet randomised trial to support the usage. This report highlights the efficacy and safety of high dose IVIG in SLE patients with multi-organ involvement particularly lupus nephritis. We also reviewed the literature on the usage of IVIG for lupus nephritis. However, more studies are needed to further clarify the optimal therapeutic dosage and regime for IVIG and to identify the group of patients who might benefit the most from this expensive therapy.
Educational environment of an institution is the environment experienced or perceived by students and teachers. Individual students and teachers will respond differently to these subtle elements in their learning experience. Curriculum's most significant manifestation and conceptualisation is the environment. There is a proven connection between the environment and the valuable outcomes of students' achievement, satisfaction and success. If one wants to describe, assess or get a handle on the curriculum in a medical school, then the educational and organisational environment or total milieu associated with the curriculum and the medical school needs to be studied. Educational environment is one of the most important determinants of an effective curriculum. Educational environment fosters scholarly or intellectual activities; it encourages friendliness, co-operation and supportiveness. It also fosters the learning, growth and development of students. Students' perceptions of their educational environment are a useful basis for modifying and improving the quality of educational environment. Several research groups over the years have attempted to identify and quantify the presence and impact of rather intangible aspects of a learning environment. Each study has used different survey questionnaires to solicit student reactions.
Rectal delivery of drugs has been proven to be effective in terms of drug absorption and distribution comparable with other routes such as oral, buccal, sublingual or even nasal. In this study, two new suppository bases were developed using combinations of locally sourced hydrogenated palm kernel oil, hydrogenated palm kernel stearin and hydrogenated palm kernel olein with mixtures of stearic acid and glyceryl monostearate. When formulated with aspirin, these bases produced suppositories with acceptable characteristics. These aspirin suppositories were tested on twelve healthy subjects after an approval from the Medical Ethics Committee, University of Malaya had been procured. We quantified aspirin from the urine samples of the subjects to determine the relative availability of the different suppository preparations relative to an oral dose. The excretion of salicylic acid, one of the metabolite of aspirin in human urine taking aspirin was quantified. The F value was found to range from 1.16 to 1.38. Hence, the excretion results showed that these palm kernel oil blends are suitable suppository bases.
Rhabdomyosarcoma of the genitourinary tract is rare and predominantly affects paediatric patients. We present an unusual case of such a lesion in an adult with extensive occupation of the bladder cavity by the lesion, resulting in bilateral ureteric obstruction, without evidence of ureteric outlet invasion. We outline the unusual CT and macroscopic appearance of this lesion. We also discuss the literature data and management strategies of rhabdomyosarcoma of the genitourinary tract.
Oral cavity malignancy reconstructive surgery has advanced from pedicle flaps to microvascular free tissue transfer. Previously, reconstruction of these defects were done using radial forearm free flaps in this centre. We report our experience using anterolateral thigh free flap in a 49 year old lady with squamous cell carcinoma of the tongue. Excision of tumour left a defect which was later reconstructed using microvascular free tissue transfer using the right anterolateral thigh free flap. The flap was well taken up at the recepient site and no evidence of flap failure noted post operatively and on completion of radiotherapy. She was able to maintain comprehensible speech and swallowing ability.
Priapism is a urological emergency. The treatment for ischaemic priapism is usually cavernosal aspiration with or without cavernosal irrigation. Some patients may need surgical intervention -the various shunt procedures. We report a 21-year-old man with priapism secondary to chronic myeloid leukemia who needed a combined medical and surgical management. He underwent a spongiocavernosal shunt as well as cytoreductive chemotherapy to achieve complete detumescence. Therefore, cytoreductive chemotherapy is an adjunct in difficult cult to treat priapism associated with chronic myeloid leukemia.
What does this term medical education conjure up? Does it refer to the teaching and learning of medicine and therefore relates to students and the curriculum? Does it refer to the process of teaching and therefore relates to teachers? Perhaps it is both, since teaching and learning go hand in hand.(Copied from article).
A retrospective cross-sectional study of injury patients who attended the Accident and Emergency Unit was conducted at the University of Malaya Medical Centre. Demographic data with regards to age, sex, race, occupation and the relevant data such as type of accident, type of injury sustained and also severity seen during the month of January 2005 were selected retrospectively from medical record. The objectives were to review road traffic accidents and their severity of injuries among the patients. There were two hundred and forty-three (197 males and 46 females) patients involved: 60% Malays, 16% Chinese, 21% Indians and 3% other ethnic groups. Peak accidents occurred among the 21 to 30 years age group. Among the type of accidents, 65.8% involved motorbike riders, 10.3% car drivers, 8.6% pillion riders, 7.8% car passengers, 5.8% pedestrians and 1.6% were bicycle rider injuries. About 57.6% sustained minor injuries and 42.4% major injuries. There was no significant association between outcome of road traffic accidents and sex, age group and race. However, there was a significant association between type of accidents and severity of injuries (p = 0.014). Males sustained more major injuries and motorbike accidents were the highest among road injuries. Therefore, further prevention and control with emphasis on behavioural changes, education and law enforcement may reduce the number of road traffic accidents in the future.
This is a retrospective case control study conducted between 1 January 2005 and 30 June 2006 at the Hospital Tuanku Jaafar, Seremban, Malaysia. The objective was to study the maternal sociodemographics and foetal characteristics associated with premature delivery. There were 387 cases selected universally and 387 controls selected by using systematic random sampling involving every 13 cases. The patients were women who had delivered their babies before 37 completed weeks, while the control were women who had term deliveries during the same period. Data were collected using structured questionnaire through secondary data. Results showed that having multiple pregnancies (OR=8.33, 95% CI: 2.91, 23.84), congenital abnormality (OR=4.6, 95% CI: 0.98, 21.84) and intrauterine growth retardation (OR=15.59, 95% CI: 3.69, 65.82) were the risk factors of premature delivery. Being an ethnic Indian also raised the odds (OR=1.67, 95% CI: 1.14, 2.43) but this was not significant in the multivariate analysis. Other sociodemographic characteristics did not contribute significantly to the risk factors for premature delivery in this sample. In conclusion, foetal characteristics were found to be significantly associated with premature delivery after adjustment for other confounding factors.
Malaysia is a country consisting of people of Malay, Chinese and Indian ethnic origin and also of some Indonesian and Thai population. In this study of acute pancreatitis, the age group, sex incidence, clinical
features, complications and treatment were compared between different ethnic groups. A total of fifty-four consecutive patients admitted in Sungai Petani Hospital, Kedah, Malaysia with acute pancreatitis from 2002 to 2004 were taken for this study. There were 29 males and 25 females. The 40–60 years age group was more commonly involved. The common factors associated with acute pancreatitis were alcohol intake in males and biliary disease in females. Two females suffered from acute pancreatitis following endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP). One of the 54 cases died due to multi-organ failure.
Over the years, the emphasis on research practices in healthcare has received more recognition than the emphasis on teaching practices. Also, in contrast to the strong focus on aligning care-giving practices with evidence of effectiveness; aligning educational practices with evidences of effectiveness has continued to be neglected. This creates a chasm that hinders the delivery of effective health practices. Many challenges in the current healthcare delivery system warrant a call for a revamp of health professionals' education, and for a greater focus in effective teaching, assessment and supervision. This paper highlights the current challenges in health professional education (as revealed by the Institute of Medicine, IOM, 2003). It focusses on five key issues for promoting teaching excellence, and supports the move for new lecturers to be educationally trained so that 'teaching for learning' becomes current, effective and enjoyable. More importantly, the vision for health professional education that "all health professionals are educated to deliver patient-centred-care as members of an interdisciplinary team, emphasising evidence-based practice, quality improvement approaches, and informatics" can be attained. This vision has important implication for medical lecturers as it means they have to be better educated to teach in order to be prepared to meet the demands of a reformed healthcare system.
Dengue virus infection has been endemic in Malaysia and in the region for decades and the disease caused by the virus has led to increased morbidity and mortality each year. Dengue is now endemic in more than 110 countries worldwide with two-fifths of the world's population at risk. Dengue fever is a flu-like illness and clinical features vary with the age of the patient. Dengue haemorrhagic fever on the other hand, is characterized by high fever, haemorrhagic phenomena and in severe cases, circulatory failure. There is no specific treatment for dengue fever but careful clinical management frequently saves the lives of these patients. Vaccine development has been difficult as protection against one or two dengue viruses could actually increase the risk of more serious diseases. At present, the only method of preventing dengue is to combat the vector mosquitoes. Dengue is diagnosed by viral isolation and or serology. Current methods, some in-house and others commercial, are far from satisfactory. My laboratory has developed, evaluated and validated tests for dengue that now enable detection on the first day of illness in most cases. At the same time an important aspect of dengue prevention is protection. To this end, we have been investigating the various immune parameters such as T-cells, cytokines and antibody neutralizing activities to show that specific immune responses do occur in a selected Malaysian population which are HLA restricted, cytokine mediated and directed specifically at certain regions of the virus.
The state of Selangor, Malaysia, is facing a significant rise in the number of malaria cases with the incidence varying from 20 to 90 per 100,000 persons in a population. A study was carried out to describe the distribution of malaria cases in relation to the growing number of foreign workers in Selangor. Data were reviewed using the return forms "PBV (M) 101", a summary of malaria cases in Selangor for 2006 and Annual Reports of Vector-Borne Disease Control Unit, Selangor State Department for 2001- 2005. The malaria cases in Selangor varied between 172 cases in 2001 and 90 cases in 2006. Most of the cases were contributed by foreign workers, who were predominantly male of economically active age group and came from malaria endemic countries. Most of these cases were concentrated in the urban districts. Malaria is still endemic in Selangor. Malarial infection has the potential of contributing to an urban outbreak of malaria.
Substance abuse is one of the leading and most complicated health and social problems faced by our country. Unfortunately, after three decades of managing these problems, outcomes are unpromising and poor.(Copied from the article).
The presenting signs of acute leukaemia occur as a result of bone marrow failure and organ infiltration. Increased bleeding tendencies are seen on the skin, gums and mucosal lining. Bleeding in the posterior segment of the eye, namely the retina and vitreous, may occur, but do not usually cause any visual disturbances. This case demonstrates visual loss as a result of premacular subhyaloid haemorrhage in acute leukaemia.
The crux of the current health problem is the alarming increase of dengue cases in the country. Dengue fever is endemic in Southeast Asia with Malaysia seeing dengue cases surge since 2003. The Health Minister of Malaysia has reported that the acute increase in dengue cases is worrying and could hit the country's productivity, tourism industry and economy.(Copied from article).
Antithyroid drugs have been used for more than 50 years for the management of hyperthyroidism. Most patients tolerate treatment well, but some may develop rare life threatening side effects such as agranulocytosis and aplastic anaemia. Clinical experience with the latter condition is extremely limited. We report on a case of carbimazole-induced aplastic anaemia caused by hypocellular bone marrow and associated plasmacytosis in a thyrotoxic patient chronically treated with carbimazole. This resolved after substitution with propylthiouracil. The clinical course was complicated by neutropaenic septicaemia and atrial fibrillation.
Study site: University Malaya Medical Centre (UMMC), Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Achieving and maintaining good glycaemic control remains an important goal in the management of this common and prevalent disorder. Recent evidence from important megatrials, ACCORD, ADVANCE, VADT, UKPDS-10 year follow-up as well as the STENO-2 follow-up study, have cleared doubts concerning the benefits of targeting good glycaemic control. For the first time, we have the reassurance that macrovascular benefits can be realised from good glycaemic control. The legacy effect of prior good glucose control from the UKPDS-10 year follow-up, reinforces the results seen from the DCCT-EDIC (for Type 1 diabetes). The Intervention Phase of the UKPDS revealed benefits for reduction of microvascular complications, while it was only at the end of the Post-Trial Monitoring Phase where significant improvements in both micro and macrovascular outcomes were seen. The other three Trials assessing the effect of glycaemic control on cardiovascular outcomes, although largely negative for CV benefit, give valuable insight towards appropriate patient characteristics for which aggressive glucose control can and should be instituted. Individualising glycaemic targets, which has been the approach that many clinicians have been practising, has received new impetus albeit with clearer details. Getting to glycaemic goal early in the course of T2DM and Doing to Safely (Avoiding hypoglycaemia)are the key ingredients to successful management. The legacy of the memory of initial good metabolic/glycaemic control is investment in good health with benefits of reductions in both micro and more importantly, macrovascular disease, years later. Multifactorial interventions that include blood pressure, lipid lowering in addition to glucose control in these individuals with the Metabolic Syndrome result in more immediate beneficial additive effects on cardiovascular outcomes.