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Purpose Auditory-perceptual assessment, in which trained listeners rate a large number of perceptual features of speech samples, is the gold standard for the differential diagnosis of motor speech disorders. The goal of this study was to investigate the feasibility of applying a similar, formalized auditory-perceptual approach to the assessment of language deficits in connected speech samples from individuals with aphasia. Method Twenty-seven common features of connected speech in aphasia were defined, each of which was rated on a 5-point scale. Three experienced researchers evaluated 24 connected speech samples from the AphasiaBank database, and 12 student clinicians evaluated subsets of 8 speech samples each. We calculated interrater reliability for each group of raters and investigated the validity of the auditory-perceptual approach by comparing feature ratings to related quantitative measures derived from transcripts and clinical measures, and by examining patterns of feature co-occurrence. Results Most features were rated with good-to-excellent interrater reliability by researchers and student clinicians. Most features demonstrated strong concurrent validity with respect to quantitative connected speech measures computed from AphasiaBank transcripts and/or clinical aphasia battery subscores. Factor analysis showed that 4 underlying factors, which we labeled Paraphasia, Logopenia, Agrammatism, and Motor Speech, accounted for 79% of the variance in connected speech profiles. Examination of individual patients' factor scores revealed striking diversity among individuals classified with a given aphasia type. Conclusion Auditory-perceptual rating of connected speech in aphasia shows potential to be a comprehensive, efficient, reliable, and valid approach for characterizing connected speech in aphasia.
PURPOSE - There is an ongoing need to develop assessments of spontaneous speech that focus on whether the child's utterances are comprehensible to listeners. This study sought to identify the attributes of a stable ratings-based measure of speech comprehensibility, which enabled examining the criterion-related validity of an orthography-based measure of the comprehensibility of conversational speech in students with Down syndrome.
METHOD - Participants were 10 elementary school students with Down syndrome and 4 unfamiliar adult raters. Averaged across-observer Likert ratings of speech comprehensibility were called a ratings-based measure of speech comprehensibility. The proportion of utterance attempts fully glossed constituted an orthography-based measure of speech comprehensibility.
RESULTS - Averaging across 4 raters on four 5-min segments produced a reliable (G = .83) ratings-based measure of speech comprehensibility. The ratings-based measure was strongly (r > .80) correlated with the orthography-based measure for both the same and different conversational samples.
CONCLUSION - Reliable and valid measures of speech comprehensibility are achievable with the resources available to many researchers and some clinicians.
UNLABELLED - Our purpose was to evaluate the safety and efficacy of (68)Ga-DOTATATE PET/CT compared with (111)In-pentetreotide imaging for diagnosis, staging, and restaging of pulmonary and gastroenteropancreatic neuroendocrine tumors.
METHODS - (68)Ga-DOTATATE PET/CT and (111)In-pentetreotide scans were obtained for 78 of 97 consecutively enrolled patients with known or suspected pulmonary or gastroenteropancreatic neuroendocrine tumors. Safety and toxicity were measured by comparing vital signs, serum chemistry values, or acquisition-related medical complications before and after (68)Ga-DOTATATE injection. Added value was determined by changes in treatment plan when (68)Ga-DOTATATE PET/CT results were added to all prior imaging, including (111)In-pentetreotide. Interobserver reproducibility of (68)Ga-DOTATATE PET/CT scan interpretation was measured between blinded and nonblinded interpreters.
RESULTS - (68)Ga-DOTATATE PET/CT and (111)In-pentetreotide scans were significantly different in impact on treatment (P < 0.001). (68)Ga-DOTATATE PET/CT combined with CT or liver MRI changed care in 28 of 78 (36%) patients. Interobserver agreement between blinded and nonblinded interpreters was high. No participant had a trial-related event requiring treatment. Mild, transient events were tachycardia in 1, alanine transaminase elevation in 1, and hyperglycemia in 2 participants. No clinically significant arrhythmias occurred. (68)Ga-DOTATATE PET/CT correctly identified 3 patients for peptide-receptor radiotherapy incorrectly classified by (111)In-pentetreotide.
CONCLUSION - (68)Ga-DOTATATE PET/CT was equivalent or superior to (111)In-pentetreotide imaging in all 78 patients. No adverse events requiring treatment were observed. (68)Ga-DOTATATE PET/CT changed treatment in 36% of participants. Given the lack of significant toxicity, lower radiation exposure, and improved accuracy compared with (111)In-pentetreotide, (68)Ga-DOTATATE imaging should be used instead of (111)In-pentetreotide imaging where available.
© 2016 by the Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging, Inc.
The NCI Clinical Proteomic Tumor Analysis Consortium (CPTAC) employed a pair of reference xenograft proteomes for initial platform validation and ongoing quality control of its data collection for The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) tumors. These two xenografts, representing basal and luminal-B human breast cancer, were fractionated and analyzed on six mass spectrometers in a total of 46 replicates divided between iTRAQ and label-free technologies, spanning a total of 1095 LC-MS/MS experiments. These data represent a unique opportunity to evaluate the stability of proteomic differentiation by mass spectrometry over many months of time for individual instruments or across instruments running dissimilar workflows. We evaluated iTRAQ reporter ions, label-free spectral counts, and label-free extracted ion chromatograms as strategies for data interpretation (source code is available from http://homepages.uc.edu/~wang2x7/Research.htm ). From these assessments, we found that differential genes from a single replicate were confirmed by other replicates on the same instrument from 61 to 93% of the time. When comparing across different instruments and quantitative technologies, using multiple replicates, differential genes were reproduced by other data sets from 67 to 99% of the time. Projecting gene differences to biological pathways and networks increased the degree of similarity. These overlaps send an encouraging message about the maturity of technologies for proteomic differentiation.
OBJECTIVES - To evaluate the accuracy and change over time of contrast-enhanced ultrasound (US) imaging for assessing residual blood flow after transarterial chemoembolization of hepatocellular carcinoma with drug-eluting beads at 2 different follow-up intervals.
METHODS - Data from 16 tumors treated by transarterial chemoembolization with drug-eluting beads were successfully obtained. As part of the study, patients provided consent to undergo contrast-enhanced US examinations the morning before embolization, 1 to 2 weeks after embolization, and the morning before follow-up contrast-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or computed tomography (CT) (1 month after embolization). Blinded review of contrast-enhanced US and MRI/CT studies were performed by 2 radiologists who evaluated residual flow as no change, partial change, or no residual flow. Inter- and intra-reader variability rates were calculated before discordant individual reads were settled by consensus.
RESULTS - The only adverse event reported during the contrast-enhanced US examinations was a single episode of transient back pain. Contrast-enhanced US at 1 to 2 weeks after embolization (n = 14) resulted in 100% sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, negative predictive value, and accuracy. Contrast-enhanced US 1 month after embolization (n = 15) resulted in 75% sensitivity, 100% specificity, 100% positive predictive value, 92% negative predictive value, and 93% accuracy. Inter-reader agreement was 86% for contrast-enhanced US at 1 to 2 weeks, 93% for contrast-enhanced US at 1 month, and 100% for contrast-enhanced MRI/CT at 1 month, whereas intra-reader agreement was 71% for contrast-enhanced US at 1 to 2 weeks, 87% for contrast-enhanced US at 1 month, and 91% for MRI/CT.
CONCLUSIONS - Contrast-enhanced US imaging at 1 to 2 weeks after the procedure may be a viable alternative to MRI/CT for evaluating residual blood flow after transarterial chemoembolization with drug-eluting beads, albeit with a higher degree of reader variability.
© 2015 by the American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine.
BACKGROUND - The high value of the specific absorption rate (SAR) of radio-frequency (RF) energy arising from the series of RF refocusing pulses in T2-weighted (T2-w) turbo spin echo (TSE) MRI hampers its clinical application at 7.0 Tesla (7T). T2-w gradient and spin echo (GRASE) uses the speed from gradient refocusing in combination with the chemical-shift/static magnetic field (B0) inhomogeneity insensitivity from spin-echo refocusing to acquire T2-w images with a limited number of refocusing RF pulses, thus reducing SAR.
OBJECTIVES - To investigate whether low SAR T2-w GRASE could replace T2-w TSE in detecting white matter (WM) disease in MS patients imaged at 7T.
METHODS - The .7 mm3 isotropic T2-w TSE and T2-w GRASE images with variable echo times (TEs) and echo planar imaging (EPI) factors were obtained on a 7T scanner from postmortem samples of MS brains. These samples were derived from brains of 3 female MS patients. WM lesions (WM-Ls) and normal-appearing WM (NAWM) signal intensity, WM-Ls/NAWM contrast-to-noise ratio (CNR) and MRI/myelin staining sections comparisons were obtained.
RESULTS - GRASE sequences with EPI factor/TE = 3/50 and 3/75 ms were comparable to the SE technique for measures of CNR in WM-Ls and NAWM and for detection of WM-Ls. In all sequences, however, identification of areas with remyelination, Wallerian degeneration, and gray matter demyelination, as depicted by myelin staining, was not possible.
CONCLUSIONS - T2-w GRASE images may replace T2-w TSE for clinical use. However, even at 7T, both sequences fail in detecting and characterizing MS disease beyond visible WM-Ls.
Copyright © 2015 by the American Society of Neuroimaging.
OBJECTIVE - This study investigated inter-rater agreement (IRA) among EEG experts for the identification of electrographic seizures and periodic discharges (PDs) in continuous ICU EEG recordings.
METHODS - Eight board-certified EEG experts independently identified seizures and PDs in thirty 1-h EEG segments which were selected from ICU EEG recordings collected from three medical centers. IRA was compared between seizure and PD identifications, as well as among rater groups that have passed an ICU EEG Certification Test, developed by the Critical Care EEG Monitoring Research Consortium (CCEMRC).
RESULTS - Both kappa and event-based IRA statistics showed higher mean values in identification of seizures compared to PDs (k=0.58 vs. 0.38; p<0.001). The group of rater pairs who had both passed the ICU EEG Certification Test had a significantly higher mean IRA in comparison to rater pairs in which neither had passed the test.
CONCLUSIONS - IRA among experts is significantly higher for identification of electrographic seizures compared to PDs. Additional instruction, such as the training module and certification test developed by the CCEMRC, could enhance this IRA.
SIGNIFICANCE - This study demonstrates more disagreement in the labeling of PDs in comparison to seizures. This may be improved by education about standard EEG nomenclature.
Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd.
OBJECTIVES - In the emergency department (ED), health care providers miss delirium approximately 75% of the time, because they do not routinely screen for this syndrome. The Confusion Assessment Method for the Intensive Care Unit (CAM-ICU) is a brief (<1 minute) delirium assessment that may be feasible for use in the ED. The study objective was to determine its validity and reliability in older ED patients.
METHODS - In this prospective observational cohort study, patients aged 65 years or older were enrolled at an academic, tertiary care ED from July 2009 to February 2012. An emergency physician (EP) and research assistants (RAs) performed the CAM-ICU. The reference standard for delirium was a comprehensive (~30 minutes) psychiatrist assessment using the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition, Text Revision criteria. All assessments were blinded to each other and were conducted within 3 hours. Sensitivities, specificities, and likelihood ratios were calculated for both the EP and the RAs using the psychiatrist's assessment as the reference standard. Kappa values between the EP and RAs were also calculated to measure reliability.
RESULTS - Of 406 patients enrolled, 50 (12.3%) had delirium. The median age was 73.5 years old (interquartile range [IQR] = 69 to 80 years), 202 (49.8%) were female, and 57 (14.0%) were nonwhite. The CAM-ICU's sensitivities were 72.0% (95% confidence interval [CI] = 58.3% to 82.5%) and 68.0% (95% CI = 54.2% to 79.2%) in the EP and RAs, respectively. The CAM-ICU's specificity was 98.6% (95% CI = 96.8% to 99.4%) for both raters. The negative likelihood ratios (LR-) were 0.28 (95% CI = 0.18 to 0.44) and 0.32 (95% CI = 0.22 to 0.49) in the EP and RAs, respectively. The positive likelihood ratios (LR+) were 51.3 (95% CI = 21.1 to 124.5) and 48.4 (95% CI = 19.9 to 118.0), respectively. The kappa between the EP and RAs was 0.92 (95% CI = 0.85 to 0.98), indicating excellent interobserver reliability.
CONCLUSIONS - In older ED patients, the CAM-ICU is highly specific, and a positive test is nearly diagnostic for delirium when used by both the EP and RAs. However, the CAM-ICU's sensitivity was modest, and a negative test decreased the likelihood of delirium by a small amount. The consequences of a false-negative CAM-ICU are unknown and deserve further study.
© 2014 by the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine.
PURPOSE - Expert manual labeling is the gold standard for image segmentation, but this process is difficult, time-consuming, and prone to inter-individual differences. While fully automated methods have successfully targeted many anatomies, automated methods have not yet been developed for numerous essential structures (e.g., the internal structure of the spinal cord as seen on magnetic resonance imaging). Collaborative labeling is a new paradigm that offers a robust alternative that may realize both the throughput of automation and the guidance of experts. Yet, distributing manual labeling expertise across individuals and sites introduces potential human factors concerns (e.g., training, software usability) and statistical considerations (e.g., fusion of information, assessment of confidence, bias) that must be further explored. During the labeling process, it is simple to ask raters to self-assess the confidence of their labels, but this is rarely done and has not been previously quantitatively studied. Herein, the authors explore the utility of self-assessment in relation to automated assessment of rater performance in the context of statistical fusion.
METHODS - The authors conducted a study of 66 volumes manually labeled by 75 minimally trained human raters recruited from the university undergraduate population. Raters were given 15 min of training during which they were shown examples of correct segmentation, and the online segmentation tool was demonstrated. The volumes were labeled 2D slice-wise, and the slices were unordered. A self-assessed quality metric was produced by raters for each slice by marking a confidence bar superimposed on the slice. Volumes produced by both voting and statistical fusion algorithms were compared against a set of expert segmentations of the same volumes.
RESULTS - Labels for 8825 distinct slices were obtained. Simple majority voting resulted in statistically poorer performance than voting weighted by self-assessed performance. Statistical fusion resulted in statistically indistinguishable performance from self-assessed weighted voting. The authors developed a new theoretical basis for using self-assessed performance in the framework of statistical fusion and demonstrated that the combined sources of information (both statistical assessment and self-assessment) yielded statistically significant improvement over the methods considered separately.
CONCLUSIONS - The authors present the first systematic characterization of self-assessed performance in manual labeling. The authors demonstrate that self-assessment and statistical fusion yield similar, but complementary, benefits for label fusion. Finally, the authors present a new theoretical basis for combining self-assessments with statistical label fusion.