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Antimalarials (AMs) reduce disease activity and improve survival in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), but studies have reported low AM prescribing frequencies. Using a real-world electronic health record cohort, we examined if patient or provider characteristics impacted AM prescribing. We identified 977 SLE cases, 94% of whom were ever prescribed an AM. Older patients and patients with SLE nephritis were less likely to be on AMs. Current age (odds ratio = 0.97, < 0.01) and nephritis (odds ratio = 0.16, < 0.01) were both significantly associated with ever AM use after adjustment for sex and race. Of the 244 SLE nephritis cases, only 63% were currently on AMs. SLE nephritis subjects who were currently prescribed AMs were more likely to be followed by a rheumatologist than a nephrologist and less likely to have undergone dialysis or renal transplant (both < 0.001). Non-current versus current SLE nephritis AM users had higher serum creatinine ( < 0.001), higher urine protein ( = 0.05), and lower hemoglobin levels ( < 0.01). As AMs reduce disease damage and improve survival in patients with SLE, our results demonstrate an opportunity to target future efforts to improve prescribing rates among multi-specialty providers.
Importance - Airway reconstruction for adults with laryngotracheal stenosis (LTS) is directed toward improving airway caliber to mitigate the patient's dyspnea and achieve prosthesis-free breathing (ie, without tracheostomy, intraluminal stent, or T-tube). Despite the importance of preoperative risk stratification to minimize postoperative complications, consensus on an objective predictive algorithm for open airway reconstruction is lacking.
Objective - To determine whether the ability to achieve a prosthesis-free airway in adults after open airway reconstruction is associated with red blood cell distribution width (RDW) at the time of surgery.
Design, Setting, and Participants - Case series study investigating 92 consecutive patients 18 years and older with laryngotracheal stenosis who underwent open airway reconstruction at a US tertiary care hospital from January 1, 2006, to January 1, 2017.
Main Outcomes and Measures - The main outcome was a prosthesis-free airway (absence of tracheostomy, intraluminal stent, or T-tubes) at last follow-up. Multivariate logistic regression modeling was used to identify independent factors associated with this outcome.
Results - Of the 92 patients who met inclusion criteria, the median (interquartile range) age was 44 (33.0-60.3) years; 50 (53%) were female, and 82 (89%) were white. In all, 74 patients (80%) were prosthesis free at the last follow-up (mean, 833 days; 95% CI, 10-4229 days). In multivariate analyses, airway decannulation was significantly correlated with reduced RDW (odds ratio [OR], 0.40; 95% CI, 0.19-0.84) and the absence of posterior glottic stenosis (OR, 0.12; 95% CI, 0.04-0.37).
Conclusions and Relevance - These data suggest that surgical success in open airway reconstruction is significantly associated with RDW and whether the patient had posterior glottic stenosis. The RDW is a routine laboratory parameter that may provide some insight to the preoperative probability of prosthesis removal, facilitate risk stratification, promote informed patient decision making, and optimize health care resource management.
OBJECTIVE - To assess white matter integrity in patients with essential tremor (ET) and Parkinson disease (PD) with moderate to severe motor impairment.
METHODS - Sedated participants with ET (n = 57) or PD (n = 99) underwent diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) and fractional anisotropy, mean diffusivity, axial diffusivity, and radial diffusivity values were computed. White matter tracts were defined using 3 well-described atlases. To determine candidate white matter regions that differ between ET and PD groups, a bootstrapping analysis was applied using the least absolute shrinkage and selection operator. Linear regression was applied to assess magnitude and direction of differences in DTI metrics between ET and PD populations in the candidate regions.
RESULTS - Fractional anisotropy values that differentiate ET from PD localize primarily to thalamic and visual-related pathways, while diffusivity differences localized to the cerebellar peduncles. Patients with ET exhibited lower fractional anisotropy values than patients with PD in the lateral geniculate body ( < 0.01), sagittal stratum ( = 0.01), forceps major ( = 0.02), pontine crossing tract ( = 0.03), and retrolenticular internal capsule ( = 0.04). Patients with ET exhibited greater radial diffusivity values than patients with PD in the superior cerebellar peduncle ( < 0.01), middle cerebellar peduncle ( = 0.05), and inferior cerebellar peduncle ( = 0.05).
CONCLUSIONS - Regionally, distinctive white matter microstructural values in patients with ET localize to the cerebellar peduncles and thalamo-cortical visual pathways. These findings complement recent functional imaging studies in ET but also extend our understanding of putative physiologic features that account for distinctions between ET and PD.
© 2018 American Academy of Neurology.
In systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), dsDNA antibodies are associated with renal disease. Less is known about comorbidities in patients without dsDNA or other autoantibodies. Using an electronic health record (EHR) SLE cohort, we employed a phenome-wide association study (PheWAS) that scans across billing codes to compare comorbidities in SLE patients with and without autoantibodies. We used our validated algorithm to identify SLE subjects. Autoantibody status was defined as ever positive for dsDNA, RNP, Smith, SSA and SSB. PheWAS was performed in antibody positive vs. negative SLE patients adjusting for age and race and using a false discovery rate of 0.05. We identified 1097 SLE subjects. In the PheWAS of dsDNA positive vs. negative subjects, dsDNA positive subjects were more likely to have nephritis ( p = 2.33 × 10) and renal failure ( p = 1.85 × 10). After adjusting for sex, race, age and other autoantibodies, dsDNA was independently associated with nephritis and chronic kidney disease. Those patients negative for dsDNA, RNP, SSA and SSB negative subjects were all more likely to have billing codes for sleep, pain and mood disorders. PheWAS uncovered a hierarchy within SLE-specific autoantibodies with dsDNA having the greatest impact on major organ involvement.
BACKGROUND - Observations from statin clinical trials and from Mendelian randomization studies suggest that low low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) concentrations may be associated with increased risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). Despite the findings from statin clinical trials and genetic studies, there is little direct evidence implicating low LDL-C concentrations in increased risk of T2DM.
METHODS AND FINDINGS - We used de-identified electronic health records (EHRs) at Vanderbilt University Medical Center to compare the risk of T2DM in a cross-sectional study among individuals with very low (≤60 mg/dl, N = 8,943) and normal (90-130 mg/dl, N = 71,343) LDL-C levels calculated using the Friedewald formula. LDL-C levels associated with statin use, hospitalization, or a serum albumin level < 3 g/dl were excluded. We used a 2-phase approach: in 1/3 of the sample (discovery) we used T2DM phenome-wide association study codes (phecodes) to identify cases and controls, and in the remaining 2/3 (validation) we identified T2DM cases and controls using a validated algorithm. The analysis plan for the validation phase was constructed at the time of the design of that component of the study. The prevalence of T2DM in the very low and normal LDL-C groups was compared using logistic regression with adjustment for age, race, sex, body mass index (BMI), high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, triglycerides, and duration of care. Secondary analyses included prespecified stratification by sex, race, BMI, and LDL-C level. In the discovery cohort, phecodes related to T2DM were significantly more frequent in the very low LDL-C group. In the validation cohort (N = 33,039 after applying the T2DM algorithm to identify cases and controls), the risk of T2DM was increased in the very low compared to normal LDL-C group (odds ratio [OR] 2.06, 95% CI 1.80-2.37; P < 2 × 10-16). The findings remained significant in sensitivity analyses. The association between low LDL-C levels and T2DM was significant in males (OR 2.43, 95% CI 2.00-2.95; P < 2 × 10-16) and females (OR 1.74, 95% CI 1.42-2.12; P = 6.88 × 10-8); in normal weight (OR 2.18, 95% CI 1.59-2.98; P = 1.1× 10-6), overweight (OR 2.17, 95% CI 1.65-2.83; P = 1.73× 10-8), and obese (OR 2.00, 95% CI 1.65-2.41; P = 8 × 10-13) categories; and in individuals with LDL-C < 40 mg/dl (OR 2.31, 95% CI 1.71-3.10; P = 3.01× 10-8) and LDL-C 40-60 mg/dl (OR 1.99, 95% CI 1.71-2.32; P < 2.0× 10-16). The association was significant in individuals of European ancestry (OR 2.67, 95% CI 2.25-3.17; P < 2 × 10-16) but not in those of African ancestry (OR 1.09, 95% CI 0.81-1.46; P = 0.56). A limitation was that we only compared groups with very low and normal LDL-C levels; also, since this was not an inception cohort, we cannot exclude the possibility of reverse causation.
CONCLUSIONS - Very low LDL-C concentrations occurring in the absence of statin treatment were significantly associated with T2DM risk in a large EHR population; this increased risk was present in both sexes and all BMI categories, and in individuals of European ancestry but not of African ancestry. Longitudinal cohort studies to assess the relationship between very low LDL-C levels not associated with lipid-lowering therapy and risk of developing T2DM will be important.
Experimental studies indicate that perinatal light exposure has enduring effects on affective behaviors in rodents; however, insufficient research has explored this hypothesis in humans. We examined photoperiod (i.e., day length) metrics during maternal pregnancy in relation to lifetime depression in the longitudinal Nurses' Health Study (NHS) and NHS II. 160,723 participants reported birth date and birth state (used to derive daily photoperiod based on published mathematical equations), and clinician-diagnosed depression and antidepressant use throughout adulthood. Logistic regression was used to estimate odds ratios (OR) (and 95% confidence intervals [CI]) for depression (defined as clinician diagnosis and antidepressant use) across quintiles of two exposures during maternal pregnancy: 1) total photoperiod (total number of daylight hours) and 2) differences between minimum/maximum photoperiod; each trimester of pregnancy was examined separately. Total photoperiod during maternal pregnancy was not associated with depression overall or by trimester of pregnancy. However, larger differences between minimum/maximum photoperiod during maternal pregnancy were related to lower odds of depression (multivariable [MV]-adjusted OR: 0.86, 95% CI: 0.83, 0.90 comparing extreme quintiles of exposure; p-trend<0.0001); this association appeared specific to the second trimester of pregnancy (MV-adjusted p-trends = 0.03, <0.0001, and 0.3 across the three trimesters, respectively). In addition, birth at higher latitude (where larger differences in minimum/maximum photoperiod exist) was associated with a significant reduction in the lifetime risk of depression. These findings are consistent with an emerging hypothesis in which perinatal light exposure may influence risk of depression, and they might be understood through the conceptual framework of adaptive developmental plasticity.
Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Motivation - Phenome-wide association studies (PheWAS) have been used to discover many genotype-phenotype relationships and have the potential to identify therapeutic and adverse drug outcomes using longitudinal data within electronic health records (EHRs). However, the statistical methods for PheWAS applied to longitudinal EHR medication data have not been established.
Results - In this study, we developed methods to address two challenges faced with reuse of EHR for this purpose: confounding by indication, and low exposure and event rates. We used Monte Carlo simulation to assess propensity score (PS) methods, focusing on two of the most commonly used methods, PS matching and PS adjustment, to address confounding by indication. We also compared two logistic regression approaches (the default of Wald versus Firth's penalized maximum likelihood, PML) to address complete separation due to sparse data with low exposure and event rates. PS adjustment resulted in greater power than PS matching, while controlling Type I error at 0.05. The PML method provided reasonable P-values, even in cases with complete separation, with well controlled Type I error rates. Using PS adjustment and the PML method, we identify novel latent drug effects in pediatric patients exposed to two common antibiotic drugs, ampicillin and gentamicin.
Availability and implementation - R packages PheWAS and EHR are available at https://github.com/PheWAS/PheWAS and at CRAN (https://www.r-project.org/), respectively. The R script for data processing and the main analysis is available at https://github.com/choileena/EHR.
Supplementary information - Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.
BACKGROUND & AIMS - Insulin resistance is a risk marker for non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, and a risk factor for liver disease progression. We assessed temporal trajectories of insulin resistance and β-cell response to serum glucose concentration throughout adulthood and their association with diabetes risk in non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.
METHODS - Three thousand and sixty participants from Coronary Artery Risk Development in Young Adults, a prospective bi-racial cohort of adults age 18-30 years at baseline (1985-1986; Y0) who completed up to 5 exams over 25 years and had fasting insulin and glucose measurement were included. At Y25 (2010-2011), non-alcoholic fatty liver disease was assessed by noncontrast computed tomography after exclusion of other liver fat causes. Latent mixture modelling identified 25-year trajectories in homeostatic model assessment insulin resistance and β-cell response homeostatic model assessment-β.
RESULTS - Three distinct trajectories were identified, separately, for homeostatic model assessment insulin resistance (low-stable [47%]; moderate-increasing [42%]; and high-increasing [12%]) and homeostatic model assessment-β (low-decreasing [16%]; moderate-decreasing [63%]; and high-decreasing [21%]). Y25 non-alcoholic fatty liver disease prevalence was 24.5%. Among non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, high-increasing homeostatic model assessment insulin resistance (referent: low-stable) was associated with greater prevalent (OR 95% CI = 8.0, 2.0-31.9) and incident (OR = 10.5, 2.6-32.8) diabetes after multivariable adjustment including Y0 or Y25 homeostatic model assessment insulin resistance. In contrast, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease participants with low-decreasing homeostatic model assessment-β (referent: high-decreasing) had the highest odds of prevalent (OR = 14.1, 3.9-50.9) and incident (OR = 10.3, 2.7-39.3) diabetes.
CONCLUSION - Trajectories of insulin resistance and β-cell response during young and middle adulthood are robustly associated with diabetes risk in non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. Thus, how persons with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease develop resistance to insulin provides important information about risk of diabetes in midlife above and beyond degree of insulin resistance at the time of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease assessment.
© 2018 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
BACKGROUND & AIMS - The presence of specific single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) can be used to calculate an individual's risk for colorectal cancer (CRC), called a genetic risk score (GRS). We investigated whether GRS can identify individuals with clinically relevant neoplasms in a screening colonoscopy population.
METHODS - We derived a GRS based on 48 SNPs associated with CRC, identified in a comprehensive literature search. We obtained genetic data from 1043 participants (50-79 years old) in a screening colonoscopy study in Germany, recruited from 2005 through 2013 (294 with advanced neoplasms, 249 with non-advanced adenoma (NAAs), and 500 without neoplasms). Each participant was assigned a GRS by aggregating their risk alleles (0, 1, or 2). Risk of advanced neoplasms and NAA according to GRS was calculated by multiple logistic regression. Risk advancement periods were calculated. We replicated our findings using data from a subset of the Tennessee Colorectal Polyp Study.
RESULTS - An increased GRS was associated with higher prevalence of advanced neoplasms, but not NAAs. Participants in the middle and upper tertiles of GRS had a 2.2-fold and 2.7-fold increase in risk, respectively, of advanced neoplasms compared to those in the lower tertile. Adjusted odds ratios (ORs) were 1.09 (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.76-1.57) for NAA in the middle tertile and 1.05 (95% CI, 0.70-1.55) for NAA in the upper tertile. The ORs were largest for proximal advanced neoplasms for participants in the middle tertile (OR, 3.55; 95% CI 1.85-6.82) and the upper tertile (OR, 3.61; 95% CI 1.84-7.10). The risk advancement period for medium vs low GRS was 13.4 years (95% CI 4.8-22.0) and for high vs low GRS was 17.5 years (95% CI, 7.8-27.3).
CONCLUSIONS - In a genetic analysis of participants in a CRC screening study in Germany, an increased GRS (based on CRC-associated SNPs) was associated with increased prevalence of advanced neoplasms. These findings might be used in defining risk-adapted screening ages.
Copyright © 2018 AGA Institute. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
BACKGROUND/OBJECTIVE - Despite effective therapies, rheumatoid arthritis (RA) can result in joint destruction requiring total joint arthroplasty to maintain patient function. An estimated 16% to 70% of those undergoing total joint arthroplasty of the hip or knee will receive a blood transfusion. Few studies have described risk factors for blood transfusion following total joint arthroplasty in patients with RA. The aim of this study was to identify demographic and clinical risk factors associated with receiving a blood transfusion following total joint arthroplasty among patients with RA.
METHODS - A retrospective study (n = 3270) was conducted using deidentified patient health claims information from a commercially insured, US data set (2007-2009). Data analysis included descriptive statistics and multivariate logistic regression.
RESULTS - Females were more likely to receive a blood transfusion (odds ratio [OR], 1.48; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.16-1.87; p = 0.001). When compared with those in the South, patients residing the Midwest were less likely to receive a blood transfusion following total joint arthroplasty (OR, 0.56; 95% CI, 0.44-0.71). Relative to those receiving total knee arthroplasty, patients who underwent total hip arthroplasty were more likely to receive a blood transfusion (OR, 1.39; 95% CI, 1.14-1.70), and patients who underwent a total shoulder arthroplasty were less likely to receive a blood transfusion (OR, 0.14; 95% CI, 0.05-0.38; p < 0.001). Patients with a history of anemia were more likely to receive a blood transfusion compared with those who did not have this diagnosis (OR, 3.30; 95% CI, 2.62-4.14; p < 0.001).
CONCLUSIONS - Risk factors for the receipt of blood transfusions among RA patients who have undergone total joint arthroplasty were identified.