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Sample records for robust randomised controlled

  1. Robust control of accelerators

    SciTech Connect

    Johnson, W.J.D. ); Abdallah, C.T. )

    1990-01-01

    The problem of controlling the variations in the rf power system can be effectively cast as an application of modern control theory. Two components of this theory are obtaining a model and a feedback structure. The model inaccuracies influence the choice of a particular controller structure. Because of the modeling uncertainty, one has to design either a variable, adaptive controller or a fixed, robust controller to achieve the desired objective. The adaptive control scheme usually results in very complex hardware; and, therefore, shall not be pursued in this research. In contrast, the robust control methods leads to simpler hardware. However, robust control requires a more accurate mathematical model of the physical process than is required by adaptive control. Our research at the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) and the University of New Mexico (UNM) has led to the development and implementation of a new robust rf power feedback system. In this paper, we report on our research progress. In section one, the robust control problem for the rf power system and the philosophy adopted for the beginning phase of our research is presented. In section two, the results of our proof-of-principle experiments are presented. In section three, we describe the actual controller configuration that is used in LANL FEL physics experiments. The novelty of our approach is that the control hardware is implemented directly in rf without demodulating, compensating, and then remodulating.

  2. Robust control for uncertain structures

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Douglas, Joel; Athans, Michael

    1991-01-01

    Viewgraphs on robust control for uncertain structures are presented. Topics covered include: robust linear quadratic regulator (RLQR) formulas; mismatched LQR design; RLQR design; interpretations of RLQR design; disturbance rejection; and performance comparisons: RLQR vs. mismatched LQR.

  3. Robust control of hypersonic aircraft

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fan, Yong-hua; Yang, Jun; Zhang, Yu-zhuo

    2007-11-01

    Design of a robust controller for the longitudinal dynamics of a hypersonic aircraft by using parameter space method is present. The desirable poles are mapped to the parameter space of the controller using pole placement approach in this method. The intersection of the parameter space is the common controller for the multiple mode system. This controller can meet the need of the different phases of aircraft. It has been proved by simulation that the controller has highly performance of precision and robustness for the disturbance caused by separation, cowl open, fuel on and fuel off and perturbation caused by unknown dynamics.

  4. Robust controls with structured perturbations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Keel, Leehyun

    1993-01-01

    This final report summarizes the recent results obtained by the principal investigator and his coworkers on the robust stability and control of systems containing parametric uncertainty. The starting point is a generalization of Kharitonov's theorem obtained in 1989, and its generalization to the multilinear case, the singling out of extremal stability subsets, and other ramifications now constitutes an extensive and coherent theory of robust parametric stability that is summarized in the results contained here.

  5. Designing robust control laws using genetic algorithms

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Marrison, Chris

    1994-01-01

    The purpose of this research is to create a method of finding practical, robust control laws. The robustness of a controller is judged by Stochastic Robustness metrics and the level of robustness is optimized by searching for design parameters that minimize a robustness cost function.

  6. Robust flight control of rotorcraft

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pechner, Adam Daniel

    With recent design improvement in fixed wing aircraft, there has been a considerable interest in the design of robust flight control systems to compensate for the inherent instability necessary to achieve desired performance. Such systems are designed for maximum available retention of stability and performance in the presence of significant vehicle damage or system failure. The rotorcraft industry has shown similar interest in adopting these reconfigurable flight control schemes specifically because of their ability to reject disturbance inputs and provide a significant amount of robustness for all but the most catastrophic of situations. The research summarized herein focuses on the extension of the pseudo-sliding mode control design procedure interpreted in the frequency domain. Application of the technique is employed and simulated on two well known helicopters, a simplified model of a hovering Sikorsky S-61 and the military's Black Hawk UH-60A also produced by Sikorsky. The Sikorsky helicopter model details are readily available and was chosen because it can be limited to pitch and roll motion reducing the number of degrees of freedom and yet contains two degrees of freedom, which is the minimum requirement in proving the validity of the pseudo-sliding control technique. The full order model of a hovering Black Hawk system was included both as a comparison to the S-61 helicopter design system and as a means to demonstrate the scaleability and effectiveness of the control technique on sophisticated systems where design robustness is of critical concern.

  7. Randomised Controlled Trials in Education Research: A Case Study of an Individually Randomised Pragmatic Trial

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Torgerson, Carole J.

    2009-01-01

    The randomised controlled trial (RCT) is an evaluative method used by social scientists in order to establish whether or not an intervention is effective. This contribution discusses the fundamental aspects of good RCT design. These are illustrated through the use of a recently completed RCT which evaluated an information and communication…

  8. Robust control with structured perturbations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Keel, Leehyun

    1988-01-01

    Two important problems in the area of control systems design and analysis are discussed. The first is the robust stability using characteristic polynomial, which is treated first in characteristic polynomial coefficient space with respect to perturbations in the coefficients of the characteristic polynomial, and then for a control system containing perturbed parameters in the transfer function description of the plant. In coefficient space, a simple expression is first given for the l(sup 2) stability margin for both monic and non-monic cases. Following this, a method is extended to reveal much larger stability region. This result has been extended to the parameter space so that one can determine the stability margin, in terms of ranges of parameter variations, of the closed loop system when the nominal stabilizing controller is given. The stability margin can be enlarged by a choice of better stabilizing controller. The second problem describes the lower order stabilization problem, the motivation of the problem is as follows. Even though the wide range of stabilizing controller design methodologies is available in both the state space and transfer function domains, all of these methods produce unnecessarily high order controllers. In practice, the stabilization is only one of many requirements to be satisfied. Therefore, if the order of a stabilizing controller is excessively high, one can normally expect to have a even higher order controller on the completion of design such as inclusion of dynamic response requirements, etc. Therefore, it is reasonable to have a lowest possible order stabilizing controller first and then adjust the controller to meet additional requirements. The algorithm for designing a lower order stabilizing controller is given. The algorithm does not necessarily produce the minimum order controller; however, the algorithm is theoretically logical and some simulation results show that the algorithm works in general.

  9. Robust control with structured perturbations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Keel, Leehyun

    1991-01-01

    This semi-annual report describes continued progress on the research. Among several approaches in this area of research, our approach to the parametric uncertainties are being matured everyday. This approach deals with real parameter uncertainties which other techniques such as H (sup infinity) optimal control, micron analysis and synthesis, and l(sub 1) optimal control cannot deal. The primary assumption of this approach is that the mathematical models are well obtained so that the most of system uncertainties can be translated into parameter uncertainties of their linear system representations. These uncertainties may be due to modeling, nonlinearity of the physical system, some time-varying parameters, etc. In this report period of research, we are concentrating on implementing a computer aided analysis and design tool based on new results on parametric robust stability. This implementation will help us to reveal further details in this approach.

  10. Randomised controlled trial of mesalazine in IBS

    PubMed Central

    Barbara, Giovanni; Cremon, Cesare; Annese, Vito; Basilisco, Guido; Bazzoli, Franco; Bellini, Massimo; Benedetti, Antonio; Benini, Luigi; Bossa, Fabrizio; Buldrini, Paola; Cicala, Michele; Cuomo, Rosario; Germanà, Bastianello; Molteni, Paola; Neri, Matteo; Rodi, Marcello; Saggioro, Alfredo; Scribano, Maria Lia; Vecchi, Maurizio; Zoli, Giorgio; Corinaldesi, Roberto; Stanghellini, Vincenzo

    2016-01-01

    Objective Low-grade intestinal inflammation plays a role in the pathophysiology of IBS. In this trial, we aimed at evaluating the efficacy and safety of mesalazine in patients with IBS. Design We conducted a phase 3, multicentre, tertiary setting, randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial in patients with Rome III confirmed IBS. Patients were randomly assigned to either mesalazine, 800 mg, or placebo, three times daily for 12 weeks, and were followed for additional 12 weeks. The primary efficacy endpoint was satisfactory relief of abdominal pain/discomfort for at least half of the weeks of the treatment period. The key secondary endpoint was satisfactory relief of overall IBS symptoms. Supportive analyses were also performed classifying as responders patients with a percentage of affirmative answers of at least 75% or >75% of time. Results A total of 185 patients with IBS were enrolled from 21 centres. For the primary endpoint, the responder patients were 68.6% in the mesalazine group versus 67.4% in the placebo group (p=0.870; 95% CI −12.8 to 15.1). In explorative analyses, with the 75% rule or >75% rule, the percentage of responders was greater in the mesalazine group with a difference over placebo of 11.6% (p=0.115; 95% CI −2.7% to 26.0%) and 5.9% (p=0.404; 95% CI −7.8% to 19.4%), respectively, although these differences were not significant. For the key secondary endpoint, overall symptoms improved in the mesalazine group and reached a significant difference of 15.1% versus placebo (p=0.032; 95% CI 1.5% to 28.7%) with the >75% rule. Conclusions Mesalazine treatment was not superior than placebo on the study primary endpoint. However, a subgroup of patients with IBS showed a sustained therapy response and benefits from a mesalazine therapy. Trial registration number ClincialTrials.gov number, NCT00626288. PMID:25533646

  11. Robust Fixed-Structure Controller Synthesis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Corrado, Joseph R.; Haddad, Wassim M.; Gupta, Kajal (Technical Monitor)

    2000-01-01

    The ability to develop an integrated control system design methodology for robust high performance controllers satisfying multiple design criteria and real world hardware constraints constitutes a challenging task. The increasingly stringent performance specifications required for controlling such systems necessitates a trade-off between controller complexity and robustness. The principle challenge of the minimal complexity robust control design is to arrive at a tractable control design formulation in spite of the extreme complexity of such systems. Hence, design of minimal complexitY robust controllers for systems in the face of modeling errors has been a major preoccupation of system and control theorists and practitioners for the past several decades.

  12. Outcomes in a Randomised Controlled Trial of Mathematics Tutoring

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Topping, K. J.; Miller, D.; Murray, P.; Henderson, S.; Fortuna, C.; Conlin, N.

    2011-01-01

    Background: Large-scale randomised controlled trials (RCT) are relatively rare in education. The present study was an attempt to scale up previous small peer tutoring projects, while investing only modestly in continuing professional development for teachers. Purpose: A two-year RCT of peer tutoring in mathematics was undertaken in one local…

  13. Sources of Bias in Outcome Assessment in Randomised Controlled Trials: A Case Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ainsworth, Hannah; Hewitt, Catherine E.; Higgins, Steve; Wiggins, Andy; Torgerson, David J.; Torgerson, Carole J.

    2015-01-01

    Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) can be at risk of bias. Using data from a RCT, we considered the impact of post-randomisation bias. We compared the trial primary outcome, which was administered blindly, with the secondary outcome, which was not administered blindly. From 44 schools, 522 children were randomised to receive a one-to-one maths…

  14. Robust Multiobjective Controllability of Complex Neuronal Networks.

    PubMed

    Tang, Yang; Gao, Huijun; Du, Wei; Lu, Jianquan; Vasilakos, Athanasios V; Kurths, Jurgen

    2016-01-01

    This paper addresses robust multiobjective identification of driver nodes in the neuronal network of a cat's brain, in which uncertainties in determination of driver nodes and control gains are considered. A framework for robust multiobjective controllability is proposed by introducing interval uncertainties and optimization algorithms. By appropriate definitions of robust multiobjective controllability, a robust nondominated sorting adaptive differential evolution (NSJaDE) is presented by means of the nondominated sorting mechanism and the adaptive differential evolution (JaDE). The simulation experimental results illustrate the satisfactory performance of NSJaDE for robust multiobjective controllability, in comparison with six statistical methods and two multiobjective evolutionary algorithms (MOEAs): nondominated sorting genetic algorithms II (NSGA-II) and nondominated sorting composite differential evolution. It is revealed that the existence of uncertainties in choosing driver nodes and designing control gains heavily affects the controllability of neuronal networks. We also unveil that driver nodes play a more drastic role than control gains in robust controllability. The developed NSJaDE and obtained results will shed light on the understanding of robustness in controlling realistic complex networks such as transportation networks, power grid networks, biological networks, etc.

  15. Robust control design for aerospace applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yedavalli, Rama K.

    1989-01-01

    Time-domain control design for stability robustness of linear systems with structured uncertainty is addressed. Upper bounds on the linear perturbation of an asymptotically stable linear system are obtained, making it possible to maintain stability by using the structural information of the uncertainty. A quantitative measure called the stability robustness index is introduced and used to design controllers for robust stability. The proposed state feedback control design algorithm can be used, for a given set of perturbations, to select the range of control effort for which the system is stability-robust. Conversely it can be used, for a given control effort, to determine the size of the tolerable perturbation. The algorithm is illustrated with examples from aircraft control and large-space-structure control problems.

  16. Robust nonlinear control of vectored thrust aircraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Doyle, John C.; Murray, Richard; Morris, John

    1993-01-01

    An interdisciplinary program in robust control for nonlinear systems with applications to a variety of engineering problems is outlined. Major emphasis will be placed on flight control, with both experimental and analytical studies. This program builds on recent new results in control theory for stability, stabilization, robust stability, robust performance, synthesis, and model reduction in a unified framework using Linear Fractional Transformations (LFT's), Linear Matrix Inequalities (LMI's), and the structured singular value micron. Most of these new advances have been accomplished by the Caltech controls group independently or in collaboration with researchers in other institutions. These recent results offer a new and remarkably unified framework for all aspects of robust control, but what is particularly important for this program is that they also have important implications for system identification and control of nonlinear systems. This combines well with Caltech's expertise in nonlinear control theory, both in geometric methods and methods for systems with constraints and saturations.

  17. Research in robust control for hypersonic aircraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Calise, A. J.

    1993-01-01

    The research during the second reporting period has focused on robust control design for hypersonic vehicles. An already existing design for the Hypersonic Winged-Cone Configuration has been enhanced. Uncertainty models for the effects of propulsion system perturbations due to angle of attack variations, structural vibrations, and uncertainty in control effectiveness were developed. Using H(sub infinity) and mu-synthesis techniques, various control designs were performed in order to investigate the impact of these effects on achievable robust performance.

  18. A probabilistic solution of robust H∞ control problem with scaled matrices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xie, R.; Gong, J. Y.

    2016-07-01

    This paper addresses the robust H∞ control problem with scaled matrices. It is difficult to find a global optimal solution for this non-convex optimisation problem. A probabilistic solution, which can achieve globally optimal robust performance within any pre-specified tolerance, is obtained by using the proposed method based on randomised algorithm. In the proposed method, the scaled H∞ control problem is divided into two parts: (1) assume the scaled matrices be random variables, the scaled H∞ control problem is converted to a convex optimisation problem for the fixed sample of the scaled matrix and a optimal solution corresponding to the fixed sample is obtained; (2) a probabilistic optimal solution is obtained by using the randomised algorithm based on a finite number N optimal solutions, which are obtained in part (1). The analysis shows that the worst case complexity of proposed method is a polynomial.

  19. Robust lateral control of highway vehicles

    SciTech Connect

    Byrne, R.H.; Abdallah, C.

    1994-08-01

    Vehicle lateral dynamics are affected by vehicle mass, longitudinal velocity, vehicle inertia, and the cornering stiffness of the tires. All of these parameters are subject to variation, even over the course of a single trip. Therefore, a practical lateral control system must guarantee stability, and hopefully ride comfort, over a wide range of parameter changes. This paper describes a robust controller which theoretically guarantees stability over a wide range of parameter changes. The robust controller is designed using a frequency domain transfer function approach. An uncertainty band in the frequency domain is determined using simulations over the range of expected parameter variations. Based on this bound, a robust controller is designed by solving the Nevanlinna-Pick interpolation problem. The performance of the robust controller is then evaluated over the range of parameter variations through simulations.

  20. Experimental Robust Control of Structural Acoustic Radiation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cox, David E.; Gibbs, Gary P.; Clark, Robert L.; Vipperman, Jeffrey S.

    1998-01-01

    This work addresses the design and application of robust controllers for structural acoustic control. Both simulation and experimental results are presented. H(infinity) and mu-synthesis design methods were used to design feedback controllers which minimize power radiated from a panel while avoiding instability due to unmodeled dynamics. Specifically, high order structural modes which couple strongly to the actuator-sensor path were poorly modeled. This model error was analytically bounded with an uncertainty model, which allowed controllers to be designed without artificial limits on control effort. It is found that robust control methods provide the control designer with physically meaningful parameters with which to tune control designs and can be very useful in determining limits of performance. Experimental results also showed, however, poor robustness properties for control designs with ad-hoc uncertainty models. The importance of quantifying and bounding model errors is discussed.

  1. Robust Fuzzy Controllers Using FPGAs

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Monroe, Author Gene S., Jr.

    2007-01-01

    Electro-mechanical device controllers typically come in one of three forms, proportional (P), Proportional Derivative (PD), and Proportional Integral Derivative (PID). Two methods of control are discussed in this paper; they are (1) the classical technique that requires an in-depth mathematical use of poles and zeros, and (2) the fuzzy logic (FL) technique that is similar to the way humans think and make decisions. FL controllers are used in multiple industries; examples include control engineering, computer vision, pattern recognition, statistics, and data analysis. Presented is a study on the development of a PD motor controller written in very high speed hardware description language (VHDL), and implemented in FL. Four distinct abstractions compose the FL controller, they are the fuzzifier, the rule-base, the fuzzy inference system (FIS), and the defuzzifier. FL is similar to, but different from, Boolean logic; where the output value may be equal to 0 or 1, but it could also be equal to any decimal value between them. This controller is unique because of its VHDL implementation, which uses integer mathematics. To compensate for VHDL's inability to synthesis floating point numbers, a scale factor equal to 10(sup (N/4) is utilized; where N is equal to data word size. The scaling factor shifts the decimal digits to the left of the decimal point for increased precision. PD controllers are ideal for use with servo motors, where position control is effective. This paper discusses control methods for motion-base platforms where a constant velocity equivalent to a spectral resolution of 0.25 cm(exp -1) is required; however, the control capability of this controller extends to various other platforms.

  2. Applications of robust control theory - Educational implications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dorato, P.; Yedavalli, R. K.

    1992-01-01

    A survey is made of applications of robust control theory to problems of flight control, control of flexible space structures, and engine control which have appeared in recent conferences and journals. An analysis is made of which theoretical techniques are most commonly used and what implications this has for graduate and undergraduate education in aerospace engineering.

  3. Robust control synthesis for uncertain dynamical systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Byun, Kuk-Whan; Wie, Bong; Sunkel, John

    1989-01-01

    This paper presents robust control synthesis techniques for uncertain dynamical systems subject to structured parameter perturbation. Both QFT (quantitative feedback theory) and H-infinity control synthesis techniques are investigated. Although most H-infinity-related control techniques are not concerned with the structured parameter perturbation, a new way of incorporating the parameter uncertainty in the robust H-infinity control design is presented. A generic model of uncertain dynamical systems is used to illustrate the design methodologies investigated in this paper. It is shown that, for a certain noncolocated structural control problem, use of both techniques results in nonminimum phase compensation.

  4. Structurally robust control of complex networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nacher, Jose C.; Akutsu, Tatsuya

    2015-01-01

    Robust control theory has been successfully applied to numerous real-world problems using a small set of devices called controllers. However, the real systems represented by networks contain unreliable components and modern robust control engineering has not addressed the problem of structural changes on complex networks including scale-free topologies. Here, we introduce the concept of structurally robust control of complex networks and provide a concrete example using an algorithmic framework that is widely applied in engineering. The developed analytical tools, computer simulations, and real network analyses lead herein to the discovery that robust control can be achieved in scale-free networks with exactly the same order of controllers required in a standard nonrobust configuration by adjusting only the minimum degree. The presented methodology also addresses the probabilistic failure of links in real systems, such as neural synaptic unreliability in Caenorhabditis elegans, and suggests a new direction to pursue in studies of complex networks in which control theory has a role.

  5. Average-cost based robust structural control

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hagood, Nesbitt W.

    1993-01-01

    A method is presented for the synthesis of robust controllers for linear time invariant structural systems with parameterized uncertainty. The method involves minimizing quantities related to the quadratic cost (H2-norm) averaged over a set of systems described by real parameters such as natural frequencies and modal residues. Bounded average cost is shown to imply stability over the set of systems. Approximations for the exact average are derived and proposed as cost functionals. The properties of these approximate average cost functionals are established. The exact average and approximate average cost functionals are used to derive dynamic controllers which can provide stability robustness. The robustness properties of these controllers are demonstrated in illustrative numerical examples and tested in a simple SISO experiment on the MIT multi-point alignment testbed.

  6. The Middeck Active Control Experiment (MACE): Identification for robust control

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Karlov, Valery I.

    1992-01-01

    Viewgraphs on identification for robust control for the Middeck Active Control Experiment (MACE) are presented. Topics covered include: identification for robust control; three levels of identification; basic elements of the approach; advantages of 'post-ID' model of uncertainty; advantages of optimization; and practical realization.

  7. Matlab as a robust control design tool

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gregory, Irene M.

    1994-01-01

    This presentation introduces Matlab as a tool used in flight control research. The example used to illustrate some of the capabilities of this software is a robust controller designed for a single stage to orbit air breathing vehicles's ascent to orbit. The global requirements of the controller are to stabilize the vehicle and follow a trajectory in the presence of atmospheric disturbances and strong dynamic coupling between airframe and propulsion.

  8. Robust control algorithms for Mars aerobraking

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Shipley, Buford W., Jr.; Ward, Donald T.

    1992-01-01

    Four atmospheric guidance concepts have been adapted to control an interplanetary vehicle aerobraking in the Martian atmosphere. The first two offer improvements to the Analytic Predictor Corrector (APC) to increase its robustness to density variations. The second two are variations of a new Liapunov tracking exit phase algorithm, developed to guide the vehicle along a reference trajectory. These four new controllers are tested using a six degree of freedom computer simulation to evaluate their robustness. MARSGRAM is used to develop realistic atmospheres for the study. When square wave density pulses perturb the atmosphere all four controllers are successful. The algorithms are tested against atmospheres where the inbound and outbound density functions are different. Square wave density pulses are again used, but only for the outbound leg of the trajectory. Additionally, sine waves are used to perturb the density function. The new algorithms are found to be more robust than any previously tested and a Liapunov controller is selected as the most robust control algorithm overall examined.

  9. A randomised controlled trial of treatment for idiopathic intracranial hypertension.

    PubMed

    Ball, Alexandra K; Howman, Andrew; Wheatley, Keith; Burdon, Michael A; Matthews, Timothy; Jacks, Andrew S; Lawden, Mark; Sivaguru, Arul; Furmston, Alexandra; Howell, Steven; Sharrack, Basil; Davies, M Brendan; Sinclair, Alexandra J; Clarke, Carl E

    2011-05-01

    The cause of idiopathic intracranial hypertension (IIH) remains unknown, and no consensus exists on how patients should be monitored and treated. Acetazolamide is a common treatment but has never been examined in a randomised controlled trial. The objectives of this pilot trial are to prospectively evaluate the use of acetazolamide, to explore various outcome measures and to inform the design of a definitive trial in IIH. Fifty patients were recruited from six centres over 23 months and randomised to receive acetazolamide (n = 25) or no acetazolamide (n = 25). Symptoms, body weight, visual function and health-related quality-of-life measures were recorded over a 12-month period. Recruited patients had typical features of mild IIH and most showed improvement, with 44% judged to have IIH in remission at the end of the trial. Difficulties with recruitment were highlighted as well as poor compliance with acetazolamide therapy (12 patients). A composite measure of IIH status was tested, and the strongest concordance with final disease status was seen with perimetry (Somers' D = 0.66) and optic disc appearance (D = 0.59). Based on the study data, a sample size of 320 would be required to demonstrate a 20% treatment effect in a substantive trial. Clinical trials in IIH require pragmatic design to involve sufficiently large numbers of patients. Future studies should incorporate weighted composite scores to reflect the relative importance of common outcome measures in IIH.

  10. Deprescribing in Frail Older People: A Randomised Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    Potter, Kathleen; Flicker, Leon; Page, Amy; Etherton-Beer, Christopher

    2016-01-01

    Objectives Deprescribing has been proposed as a way to reduce polypharmacy in frail older people. We aimed to reduce the number of medicines consumed by people living in residential aged care facilities (RACF). Secondary objectives were to explore the effect of deprescribing on survival, falls, fractures, hospital admissions, cognitive, physical, and bowel function, quality of life, and sleep. Methods Ninety-five people aged over 65 years living in four RACF in rural mid-west Western Australia were randomised in an open study. The intervention group (n = 47) received a deprescribing intervention, the planned cessation of non-beneficial medicines. The control group (n = 48) received usual care. Participants were monitored for twelve months from randomisation. Primary outcome was change in the mean number of unique regular medicines. All outcomes were assessed at baseline, six, and twelve months. Results Study participants had a mean age of 84.3±6.9 years and 52% were female. Intervention group participants consumed 9.6±5.0 and control group participants consumed 9.5±3.6 unique regular medicines at baseline. Of the 348 medicines targeted for deprescribing (7.4±3.8 per person, 78% of regular medicines), 207 medicines (4.4±3.4 per person, 59% of targeted medicines) were successfully discontinued. The mean change in number of regular medicines at 12 months was -1.9±4.1 in intervention group participants and +0.1±3.5 in control group participants (estimated difference 2.0±0.9, 95%CI 0.08, 3.8, p = 0.04). Twelve intervention participants and 19 control participants died within 12 months of randomisation (26% versus 40% mortality, p = 0.16, HR 0.60, 95%CI 0.30 to 1.22) There were no significant differences between groups in other secondary outcomes. The main limitations of this study were the open design and small participant numbers. Conclusions Deprescribing reduced the number of regular medicines consumed by frail older people living in residential care with no

  11. Is an Intervention Using Computer Software Effective in Literacy Learning? A Randomised Controlled Trial

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brooks, G.; Miles, J. N. V.; Torgerson, C. J.; Torgerson, D. J.

    2006-01-01

    Background: Computer software is widely used to support literacy learning. There are few randomised trials to support its effectiveness. Therefore, there is an urgent need to rigorously evaluate computer software that supports literacy learning. Methods: We undertook a pragmatic randomised controlled trial among pupils aged 11-12 within a single…

  12. Ethical considerations in placebo-controlled randomised clinical trials

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Summary Ethical considerations in standard medical care and clinical research are underpinnings to quality medicine. Similarly, the placebo-controlled double-blind randomised clinical trial is the gold standard for medical research and fundamental to the development of evidence-based medicine. Researchers and clinicians are challenged by ethical concerns in the informed consent with a need to maximise understanding and minimise therapeutic misconception. This editorial expands on themes raised by Chen et al’s article ‘Disclosing the Potential Impact of Placebo Controls in Antidepressant Trials’ and serves as an invitation for further submissions to BJPsych Open on ethics, research design and informed consent. Declaration of interest None. Copyright and usage © The Royal College of Psychiatrists 2015. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Non-Commercial, No Derivatives (CC BY-NC-ND) licence.

  13. Research in robust control for hypersonic aircraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Calise, A. J.

    1994-01-01

    The research during the third reporting period focused on fixed order robust control design for hypersonic vehicles. A new technique was developed to synthesize fixed order H(sub infinity) controllers. A controller canonical form is imposed on the compensator structure and a homotopy algorithm is employed to perform the controller design. Various reduced order controllers are designed for a simplified version of the hypersonic vehicle model used in our previous studies to demonstrate the capabilities of the code. However, further work is needed to investigate the issue of numerical ill-conditioning for large order systems and to make the numerical approach more reliable.

  14. Robust adaptive control of HVDC systems

    SciTech Connect

    Reeve, J.; Sultan, M. )

    1994-07-01

    The transient performance of an HVDC power system is highly dependent on the parameters of the current/voltage regulators of the converter controls. In order to better accommodate changes in system structure or dc operating conditions, this paper introduces a new adaptive control strategy. The advantages of automatic tuning for continuous fine tuning are combined with predetermined gain scheduling in order to achieve robustness for large disturbances. Examples are provided for a digitally simulated back-to-back dc system.

  15. Surrogate endpoints for overall survival in metastatic melanoma: a meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials

    PubMed Central

    Flaherty, Keith T; Hennig, Michael; Lee, Sandra J; Ascierto, Paolo A; Dummer, Reinhard; Eggermont, Alexander M M; Hauschild, Axel; Kefford, Richard; Kirkwood, John M; Long, Georgina V; Lorigan, Paul; Mackensen, Andreas; McArthur, Grant; O'Day, Steven; Patel, Poulam M; Robert, Caroline; Schadendorf, Dirk

    2015-01-01

    Summary Background Recent phase 3 trials have shown an overall survival benefit in metastatic melanoma. We aimed to assess whether progression-free survival (PFS) could be regarded as a reliable surrogate for overall survival through a meta-analysis of randomised trials. Methods We systematically reviewed randomised trials comparing treatment regimens in metastatic melanoma that included dacarbazine as the control arm, and which reported both PFS and overall survival with a standard hazard ratio (HR). We correlated HRs for overall survival and PFS, weighted by sample size or by precision of the HR estimate, assuming fixed and random effects. We did sensitivity analyses according to presence of crossover, trial size, and dacarbazine dose. Findings After screening 1649 reports and meeting abstracts published before Sept 8, 2013, we identified 12 eligible randomised trials that enrolled 4416 patients with metastatic melanoma. Irrespective of weighting strategy, we noted a strong correlation between the treatment effects for PFS and overall survival, which seemed independent of treatment type. Pearson correlation coefficients were 0.71 (95% CI 0.29–0.90) with a random-effects assumption, 0.85 (0.59–0.95) with a fixed-effects assumption, and 0.89 (0.68–0.97) with sample-size weighting. For nine trials without crossover, the correlation coefficient was 0.96 (0.81–0.99), which decreased to 0.93 (0.74–0.98) when two additional trials with less than 50% crossover were included. Inclusion of mature follow-up data after at least 50% crossover (in vemurafenib and dabrafenib phase 3 trials) weakened the PFS to overall survival correlation (0.55, 0.03–0.84). Inclusion of trials with no or little crossover with the random-effects assumption yielded a conservative statement of the PFS to overall survival correlation of 0.85 (0.51–0.96). Interpretation PFS can be regarded as a robust surrogate for overall survival in dacarbazine-controlled randomised trials of

  16. Robust control technique for nuclear power plants

    SciTech Connect

    Murphy, G.V.; Bailey, J.M.

    1989-03-01

    This report summarizes the linear quadratic Guassian (LQG) design technique with loop transfer recovery (LQG/LTR) for design of control systems. The concepts of return ratio, return difference, inverse return difference, and singular values are summarized. The LQG/LTR design technique allows the synthesis of a robust control system. To illustrate the LQG/LTR technique, a linearized model of a simple process has been chosen. The process has three state variables, one input, and one output. Three control system design methods are compared: LQG, LQG/LTR, and a proportional plus integral controller (PI). 7 refs., 20 figs., 6 tabs.

  17. Randomised controlled trials in primary care: scope and application.

    PubMed Central

    Sheikh, Aziz; Smeeth, Liam; Ashcroft, Richard

    2002-01-01

    There is now widespread acknowledgement of the absence of a sound evidence base underpinning many of the decisions made in primary care. Randomised controlled trials represent the methodology of choicefor determining efficacy and effectiveness of interventions, yet researchers working in primary care have been reluctant to use intervention studies, favouring observational study designs. Unfamiliarity with the different trial designs now available, and the relative advantages and disadvantages conferred by each, may be one factor contributing to this paradox. In this paper, we consider the principal trial designs available to primary care researchers, discussing the contexts in which a particular design may prove most useful. This information will, we hope, also prove useful to primary care clinicians attempting to interpret trial findings. PMID:12236280

  18. Optimal and robust control of transition

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bewley, T. R.; Agarwal, R.

    1996-01-01

    Optimal and robust control theories are used to determine feedback control rules that effectively stabilize a linearly unstable flow in a plane channel. Wall transpiration (unsteady blowing/suction) with zero net mass flux is used as the control. Control algorithms are considered that depend both on full flowfield information and on estimates of that flowfield based on wall skin-friction measurements only. The development of these control algorithms accounts for modeling errors and measurement noise in a rigorous fashion; these disturbances are considered in both a structured (Gaussian) and unstructured ('worst case') sense. The performance of these algorithms is analyzed in terms of the eigenmodes of the resulting controlled systems, and the sensitivity of individual eigenmodes to both control and observation is quantified.

  19. Stepping down inhaled corticosteroids in asthma: randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Hawkins, Gillian; McMahon, Alex D; Twaddle, Sara; Wood, Stuart F; Ford, Ian; Thomson, Neil C

    2003-01-01

    Objectives To determine whether the dose of inhaled corticosteroids can be stepped down in patients with chronic stable asthma while maintaining control. Design One year, randomised controlled, double blind, parallel group trial. Setting General practices throughout western and central Scotland. Participants 259 adult patients with asthma receiving regular treatment with inhaled corticosteroids at high dose (mean dose 1430 μg beclomethasone dipropionate). Interventions Participants were allocated to receive either no alteration to their dose of inhaled corticosteroid (control) or a 50% reduction in their dose if they met criteria for stable asthma (stepdown). Main outcome measures Comparison of asthma exacerbation rates, asthma related visits to general practice and hospital, health status measures, and corticosteroid dosage between the two groups. Results The proportions of subjects with asthma exacerbations were not significantly different (stepdown 31%, control 26%, P=0.354). Similarly, the numbers of visits to general practice or hospital and the disease specific and generic measures of health status over the one year period were not significantly different. On average the stepdown group received 348 μg (95% confidence interval 202 μgto494 μg) of beclomethasone dipropionate less per day than the controls (a difference of 25%), with no difference in the annual dose of oral corticosteroids between the two treatment regimens. Conclusions By adopting a stepdown approach to the use of inhaled steroids at high doses in asthma a reduction in the dose can be achieved without compromising asthma control. PMID:12763981

  20. Robustness

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ryan, R.

    1993-01-01

    Robustness is a buzz word common to all newly proposed space systems design as well as many new commercial products. The image that one conjures up when the word appears is a 'Paul Bunyon' (lumberjack design), strong and hearty; healthy with margins in all aspects of the design. In actuality, robustness is much broader in scope than margins, including such factors as simplicity, redundancy, desensitization to parameter variations, control of parameter variations (environments flucation), and operational approaches. These must be traded with concepts, materials, and fabrication approaches against the criteria of performance, cost, and reliability. This includes manufacturing, assembly, processing, checkout, and operations. The design engineer or project chief is faced with finding ways and means to inculcate robustness into an operational design. First, however, be sure he understands the definition and goals of robustness. This paper will deal with these issues as well as the need for the requirement for robustness.

  1. A multi-centre randomised controlled trial of rehabilitation aimed at improving outdoor mobility for people after stroke: Study protocol for a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    . Discussion This study protocol describes a pragmatic randomised controlled trial that will hopefully provide robust evidence of the benefit of outdoor mobility interventions after stroke for clinicians working in the community. The results will be available towards the end of 2012. Trial registration ISRCTN58683841 PMID:22721452

  2. Robust Control Design via Linear Programming

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Keel, L. H.; Bhattacharyya, S. P.

    1998-01-01

    This paper deals with the problem of synthesizing or designing a feedback controller of fixed dynamic order. The closed loop specifications considered here are given in terms of a target performance vector representing a desired set of closed loop transfer functions connecting various signals. In general these point targets are unattainable with a fixed order controller. By enlarging the target from a fixed point set to an interval set the solvability conditions with a fixed order controller are relaxed and a solution is more easily enabled. Results from the parametric robust control literature can be used to design the interval target family so that the performance deterioration is acceptable, even when plant uncertainty is present. It is shown that it is possible to devise a computationally simple linear programming approach that attempts to meet the desired closed loop specifications.

  3. Psychological rehabilitation after myocardial infarction: multicentre randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed Central

    Jones, D. A.; West, R. R.

    1996-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To evaluate rehabilitation after myocardial infarction. DESIGN: Randomised controlled trial of rehabilitation in unselected myocardial infarction patients in six centres, baseline data being collected on admission and by structured interview (of patients and spouses) shortly after discharge and outcome being assessed by structured interview at six months and clinical examination at 12 months. SETTING: Six district general hospitals. SUBJECTS: All 2328 eligible patients admitted over two years with confirmed myocardial infarction and discharged home within 28 days. INTERVENTIONS: Rehabilitation programmes comprising psychological therapy, counselling, relaxation training, and stress management training over seven weekly group outpatient sessions for patients and spouses. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Anxiety, depression, quality of life, morbidity, use of medication, and mortality. RESULTS: At six months there were no significant differences between rehabilitation patients and controls in reported anxiety (prevalence 33%) or depression (19%). Rehabilitation patients reported a lower frequency of angina (median three versus four episodes a week), medication, and physical activity. At 12 months there were no differences in clinical complications, clinical sequelae, or mortality. CONCLUSIONS: Rehabilitation programmes based on psychological therapy, counselling, relaxation training, and stress management seem to offer little objective benefit to patients who have experienced myocardial infarction compared with previous reports of smaller trials. PMID:8978226

  4. Adaptive control: Stability, convergence, and robustness

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sastry, Shankar; Bodson, Marc

    1989-01-01

    The deterministic theory of adaptive control (AC) is presented in an introduction for graduate students and practicing engineers. Chapters are devoted to basic AC approaches, notation and fundamental theorems, the identification problem, model-reference AC, parameter convergence using averaging techniques, and AC robustness. Consideration is given to the use of prior information, the global stability of indirect AC schemes, multivariable AC, linearizing AC for a class of nonlinear systems, AC of linearizable minimum-phase systems, and MIMO systems decouplable by static state feedback.

  5. System identification for robust control design

    SciTech Connect

    Dohner, J.L.

    1995-04-01

    System identification for the purpose of robust control design involves estimating a nominal model of a physical system and the uncertainty bounds of that nominal model via the use of experimentally measured input/output data. Although many algorithms have been developed to identify nominal models, little effort has been directed towards identifying uncertainty bounds. Therefore, in this document, a discussion of both nominal model identification and bounded output multiplicative uncertainty identification will be presented. This document is divided into several sections. Background information relevant to system identification and control design will be presented. A derivation of eigensystem realization type algorithms will be presented. An algorithm will be developed for calculating the maximum singular value of output multiplicative uncertainty from measured data. An application will be given involving the identification of a complex system with aliased dynamics, feedback control, and exogenous noise disturbances. And, finally, a short discussion of results will be presented.

  6. Treatment of irritable bowel syndrome: a review of randomised controlled trials

    PubMed Central

    AKEHURST, R; KALTENTHALER, E

    2001-01-01

    Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a common chronic disorder that is associated with significant disability and health care costs. The purpose of this paper is to review and assess published randomised controlled trials examining the clinical effectiveness of interventions for IBS for 1987-1998. A literature search was conducted to identify randomised controlled trials of IBS treatments: 45 studies were identified that described randomised controlled trials and of these, six fulfilled all three criteria used to assess the quality of randomised controlled trials, as described by Jadad and colleagues.1 These criteria are: adequate description of randomisation, double blinding, and description of withdrawals and dropouts. It is concluded that there are few studies which offer convincing evidence of effectiveness in treating the IBS symptom complex. This review strongly suggests that future work should include well designed trials that: describe the randomisation method; use internationally approved diagnostic criteria; and are double blinded and placebo controlled. Clear well defined outcome measures are necessary. Inclusion of quality of life measures allows comparison between trials in different therapeutic areas. Conducting such studies will help to overcome some of the difficulties identified in this review.

 PMID:11156653

  7. Strategies for Increasing Recruitment to Randomised Controlled Trials: Systematic Review

    PubMed Central

    Caldwell, Patrina H. Y.; Hamilton, Sana; Tan, Alvin; Craig, Jonathan C.

    2010-01-01

    Background Recruitment of participants into randomised controlled trials (RCTs) is critical for successful trial conduct. Although there have been two previous systematic reviews on related topics, the results (which identified specific interventions) were inconclusive and not generalizable. The aim of our study was to evaluate the relative effectiveness of recruitment strategies for participation in RCTs. Methods and Findings A systematic review, using the PRISMA guideline for reporting of systematic reviews, that compared methods of recruiting individual study participants into an actual or mock RCT were included. We searched MEDLINE, Embase, The Cochrane Library, and reference lists of relevant studies. From over 16,000 titles or abstracts reviewed, 396 papers were retrieved and 37 studies were included, in which 18,812 of at least 59,354 people approached agreed to participate in a clinical RCT. Recruitment strategies were broadly divided into four groups: novel trial designs (eight studies), recruiter differences (eight studies), incentives (two studies), and provision of trial information (19 studies). Strategies that increased people's awareness of the health problem being studied (e.g., an interactive computer program [relative risk (RR) 1.48, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.00–2.18], attendance at an education session [RR 1.14, 95% CI 1.01–1.28], addition of a health questionnaire [RR 1.37, 95% CI 1.14–1.66]), or a video about the health condition (RR 1.75, 95% CI 1.11–2.74), and also monetary incentives (RR1.39, 95% CI 1.13–1.64 to RR 1.53, 95% CI 1.28–1.84) improved recruitment. Increasing patients' understanding of the trial process, recruiter differences, and various methods of randomisation and consent design did not show a difference in recruitment. Consent rates were also higher for nonblinded trial design, but differential loss to follow up between groups may jeopardise the study findings. The study's main limitation was the necessity of

  8. Nonlinear robust control of integrated vehicle dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Zhengyi; Ji, Xuewu

    2012-02-01

    A new methodology to design the vehicle GCC (global chassis control) nonlinear controller is developed in this paper. Firstly, to handle the nonlinear coupling between sprung and unsprung masses, the vehicle is treated as a mechanical system of two-rigid-bodies which has 6 DOF (degree of freedom), including longitudinal, lateral, yaw, vertical, roll and pitch dynamics. The system equation is built in the yaw frame based on Lagrange's method, and it has been proved that the derived system remains the important physical properties of the general mechanical system. Then the GCC design problem is formulated as the trajectory tracking problem for a cascade system, with a Lagrange's system interconnecting with a linear system. The nonlinear robust control design problem of this cascade interconnected system is divided into two H ∞ control problems with respect to the two sub-systems. The parameter uncertainties in the system are tackled by adaptive theory, while the external uncertainties and disturbances are dealt with the H ∞ control theory. And the passivity of the mechanical system is applied to construct the solution of nonlinear H ∞ control problem. Finally, the effectiveness of the proposed controller is validated by simulation results even during the emergency manoeuvre.

  9. Should desperate volunteers be included in randomised controlled trials?

    PubMed

    Allmark, P; Mason, S

    2006-09-01

    Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) sometimes recruit participants who are desperate to receive the experimental treatment. This paper defends the practice against three arguments that suggest it is unethical first, desperate volunteers are not in equipoise. Second clinicians, entering patients onto trials are disavowing their therapeutic obligation to deliver the best treatment; they are following trial protocols rather than delivering individualised care. Research is not treatment; its ethical justification is different. Consent is crucial. Third, desperate volunteers do not give proper consent: effectively, they are coerced. This paper responds by advocating a notion of equipoise based on expert knowledge and widely shared values. Where such collective, expert equipoise exists there is a prima facie case for an RCT. Next the paper argues that trial entry does not involve clinicians disavowing their therapeutic obligation; individualised care based on insufficient evidence is not in patients best interest. Finally, it argues that where equipoise exists it is acceptable to limit access to experimental agents; desperate volunteers are not coerced because their desperation does not translate into a right to receive what they desire.

  10. Panax ginseng in randomised controlled trials: a systematic review.

    PubMed

    Shergis, Johannah L; Zhang, Anthony L; Zhou, Wenyu; Xue, Charlie C

    2013-07-01

    Panax ginseng C.A. Meyer is a common herb with many purported health benefits. However, there is no conclusive evidence supporting its use in the treatment of any particular disease. We conducted a systematic review to evaluate randomised controlled trials. Four English databases were searched with no publication date restriction. Included studies evaluated P. ginseng in patients with any type of disease or in healthy individuals. We assessed the quality of studies using the Cochrane risk of bias tool. Of the 475 potentially relevant studies, 65 met the inclusion criteria. These studies examined P. ginseng's effects on psychomotor performance (17 studies), physical performance (ten), circulatory system (eight), glucose metabolism (six), the respiratory system (five), erectile dysfunction (four), immunomodulation (four), quality of life/mood (four), antioxidant function (two), cancer (two), menopausal symptoms (two) and dry mouth (one). The risk of bias was unclear in most studies. Authors evaluated adverse events in 40 studies, with 135 minor events and no serious adverse events reported. P. ginseng shows promising results for improving glucose metabolism and moderating the immune response. This may have implications for several diseases including type 2 diabetes and chronic respiratory conditions. Further studies are needed to explore P. ginseng's potential as an effective treatment for these and other health conditions.

  11. Robust, Practical Adaptive Control for Launch Vehicles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Orr, Jeb. S.; VanZwieten, Tannen S.

    2012-01-01

    A modern mechanization of a classical adaptive control concept is presented with an application to launch vehicle attitude control systems. Due to a rigorous flight certification environment, many adaptive control concepts are infeasible when applied to high-risk aerospace systems; methods of stability analysis are either intractable for high complexity models or cannot be reconciled in light of classical requirements. Furthermore, many adaptive techniques appearing in the literature are not suitable for application to conditionally stable systems with complex flexible-body dynamics, as is often the case with launch vehicles. The present technique is a multiplicative forward loop gain adaptive law similar to that used for the NASA X-15 flight research vehicle. In digital implementation with several novel features, it is well-suited to application on aerodynamically unstable launch vehicles with thrust vector control via augmentation of the baseline attitude/attitude-rate feedback control scheme. The approach is compatible with standard design features of autopilots for launch vehicles, including phase stabilization of lateral bending and slosh via linear filters. In addition, the method of assessing flight control stability via classical gain and phase margins is not affected under reasonable assumptions. The algorithm s ability to recover from certain unstable operating regimes can in fact be understood in terms of frequency-domain criteria. Finally, simulation results are presented that confirm the ability of the algorithm to improve performance and robustness in realistic failure scenarios.

  12. A MODEL AND CONTROLLER REDUCTION METHOD FOR ROBUST CONTROL DESIGN.

    SciTech Connect

    YUE,M.; SCHLUETER,R.

    2003-10-20

    A bifurcation subsystem based model and controller reduction approach is presented. Using this approach a robust {micro}-synthesis SVC control is designed for interarea oscillation and voltage control based on a small reduced order bifurcation subsystem model of the full system. The control synthesis problem is posed by structured uncertainty modeling and control configuration formulation using the bifurcation subsystem knowledge of the nature of the interarea oscillation caused by a specific uncertainty parameter. Bifurcation subsystem method plays a key role in this paper because it provides (1) a bifurcation parameter for uncertainty modeling; (2) a criterion to reduce the order of the resulting MSVC control; and (3) a low order model for a bifurcation subsystem based SVC (BMSVC) design. The use of the model of the bifurcation subsystem to produce a low order controller simplifies the control design and reduces the computation efforts so significantly that the robust {micro}-synthesis control can be applied to large system where the computation makes robust control design impractical. The RGA analysis and time simulation show that the reduced BMSVC control design captures the center manifold dynamics and uncertainty structure of the full system model and is capable of stabilizing the full system and achieving satisfactory control performance.

  13. Optimal and robust control of robot manipulators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grabbe, Michael Thomas

    1992-01-01

    The problem of controlling a robot manipulator typically requires determining the actuating torques at each joint, in the form of a feedback control law, which force the manipulator joint angles to follow a prescribed trajectory. This problem is often referred to as the trajectory tracking problem, and is difficult to solve due to the highly nonlinear dynamics associated with the robot manipulator and the time variance of the system induced by the prescribed trajectory. The complexity of the problem is compounded in cases where the manipulator end effector is constrained by contact with a surface, there are modeling or parametric uncertainties in the manipulator dynamics, or there are disturbances to the system. The trajectory tracking problem is addressed in two distinct cases. The first case involves the ideal situation in which the manipulator is unconstrained in its motion and there are no uncertainties or disturbances in the system. Optimal control theory is used to develop a class of feedback control laws which produce a globally uniformly asymptotically stable (GUAS) system. The second case involves both constrained motion and the possibilities of uncertainties and disturbances in the system. Two feedback control laws are developed which are robust with respect to uncertainties and disturbances, provide globally exponentially stable (GES) position tracking error, and provide a means of regulating the force applied.

  14. Enhancing ventilation in homes of children with asthma: pragmatic randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Woodfine, Louise; Neal, Richard D; Bruce, Nigel; Edwards, Rhiannon T; Linck, Pat; Mullock, Linda; Nelhans, Nick; Pasterfield, Diana; Russell, Daphne; Russell, Ian

    2011-01-01

    Background Few robust studies have tested whether enhancing housing also improves health. Aim To evaluate the effectiveness of installing ventilation systems, and central heating where necessary, in the homes of children with moderate or severe asthma. Design and setting Pragmatic randomised controlled trial (RCT) in homes within Wrexham County Borough, Wales, UK. Method A pragmatic RCT was carried out, of a tailored package of housing improvements providing adequate ventilation and temperature, following inspection by a housing officer. One hundred and ninety-two children with asthma aged 5 to 14 years, identified from general practice registers, were randomised to receive this package, either immediately or a year after recruitment. At baseline, and after 4 and 12 months, parents reported their child's asthma-specific and generic quality of life, and days off school. Results The package improved parent-reported asthma-specific quality of life significantly at both 4 and 12 months. At 12 months, this showed an adjusted mean difference between groups of 7.1 points (95% confidence interval [CI] = 2.8 to 11.4, P= 0.001): a moderate standardised effect size of 0.42. The generic quality-of-life scale showed reported physical problems were significantly reduced at 4 months, but not quite at 12 months, when the mean difference was 4.5 (95% CI = -0.2 to 9.1, P= 0.061). The improvement in psychosocial quality of life at 12 months was not significant, with a mean difference of 2.2 (95% CI = -1.9 to 6.4, P= 0.292). Parent-reported school attendance improved, but not significantly Conclusion This novel and pragmatic trial, with integrated economic evaluation, found that tailored improvement of the housing of children with moderate to severe asthma significantly increases parent-reported asthma-related quality of life and reduces physical problems. Collaborative housing initiatives have potential to improve health. PMID:22054336

  15. Multi-application controls: Robust nonlinear multivariable aerospace controls applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Enns, Dale F.; Bugajski, Daniel J.; Carter, John; Antoniewicz, Bob

    1994-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation describes the general methodology used to apply Honywell's Multi-Application Control (MACH) and the specific application to the F-18 High Angle-of-Attack Research Vehicle (HARV) including piloted simulation handling qualities evaluation. The general steps include insertion of modeling data for geometry and mass properties, aerodynamics, propulsion data and assumptions, requirements and specifications, e.g. definition of control variables, handling qualities, stability margins and statements for bandwidth, control power, priorities, position and rate limits. The specific steps include choice of independent variables for least squares fits to aerodynamic and propulsion data, modifications to the management of the controls with regard to integrator windup and actuation limiting and priorities, e.g. pitch priority over roll, and command limiting to prevent departures and/or undesirable inertial coupling or inability to recover to a stable trim condition. The HARV control problem is characterized by significant nonlinearities and multivariable interactions in the low speed, high angle-of-attack, high angular rate flight regime. Systematic approaches to the control of vehicle motions modeled with coupled nonlinear equations of motion have been developed. This paper will discuss the dynamic inversion approach which explicity accounts for nonlinearities in the control design. Multiple control effectors (including aerodynamic control surfaces and thrust vectoring control) and sensors are used to control the motions of the vehicles in several degrees-of-freedom. Several maneuvers will be used to illustrate performance of MACH in the high angle-of-attack flight regime. Analytical methods for assessing the robust performance of the multivariable control system in the presence of math modeling uncertainty, disturbances, and commands have reached a high level of maturity. The structured singular value (mu) frequency response methodology is presented

  16. Neonatal ECMO Study of Temperature (NEST) - a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Existing evidence indicates that once mature neonates with severe cardio-respiratory failure become eligible for Extra Corporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO) their chances of intact survival are doubled if they actually receive ECMO. However, significant numbers survive with disability. NEST is a multi-centre randomised controlled trial designed to test whether, in neonates requiring ECMO, cooling to 34°C for the first 48 to 72 hours of their ECMO course leads to improved later health status. Infants allocated to the control group will receive ECMO at 37°C throughout their course, which is currently standard practice around the world. Health status of both groups will be assessed formally at 2 years corrected age. Methods/Design All infants recruited to the study will be cared for in one of the four United Kingdom (UK) ECMO centres. Babies who are thought to be eligible will be assessed by the treating clinician who will confirm eligibility, ensure that consent has been obtained and then randomise the baby using a web based system, based at the National Perinatal Epidemiology Unit (NPEU) Clinical Trials Unit. Trial registration. Babies allocated ECMO without cooling will receive ECMO at 37°C ± 0.2°C. Babies allocated ECMO with cooling will be managed at 34°C ± 0.2°C for up to 72 hours from the start of their ECMO run. The minimum duration of cooling will be 48 hours. Rewarming (to 37°C) will occur at a rate of no more than 0.5°C per hour. All other aspects of ECMO management will be identical. Primary outcome: Cognitive score from the Bayley Scales of Infant and Toddler Development, 3rd edition (Bayley-III) at age of 2 years (24 - 27 months). Discussion For the primary analysis, children will be analysed in the groups to which they are assigned, comparing the outcome of all babies allocated to "ECMO with cooling" with all those allocated to "ECMO" alone, regardless of deviation from the protocol or treatment received. For the primary outcome the

  17. Robust steering control of spacecraft carrier rockets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Correa, Adriana Elysa Alimandro; da Rosa, Alex; Ferreira, Henrique Cezar; Ishihara, Joao Yoshiyuki; Borges, Renato Alves; Sheptun, Yuri Dmitrievich

    In the year of 2003 it was established a cooperation agreement between Ukraine and Brazil for utilization of Cyclone-4 launch vehicle at Alcantara Launch Center. The company responsible for the marketing and operation of launch services is the company bi-national Alcantara Cyclone Space (ACS). The Cyclone-4 launch vehicle is the newest version of the Ukrainian Cyclone family launchers developed by Yuzhnoye State Design Office. This family has been used for many successful spacecrafts launches since 1969. This paper is concerned with the yaw stabilization problem around a nominal trajectory for the third stage of a satellite carrier rocket similar to the Cyclone-4. Only the steering machine of the main engine is considered as actuator. The dynamic behavior of the third stage around the nominal trajectory is modeled as a fourthorder time-varying linear system whereas the steering machine is modeled as a linear dynamical system up to third order. The values of the parameters of the steering machine model are unknown, however belonging to known intervals. As the main result, the stabilization problem is solved with a proportional derivative (PD) controller. The proposed tuning approach takes into account the robustness of the controller with respect to the steering machine model uncertainties. The performance of the PD controller is demonstrated by simulation results.

  18. Thermoregulatory effects of swaddling in Mongolia: a randomised controlled study

    PubMed Central

    Tsogt, Bazarragchaa; Manaseki-Holland, Semira; Pollock, Jon; Blair, Peter S; Fleming, Peter

    2016-01-01

    Objective To investigate thermal balance of infants in a Mongolian winter, and compare the effects of traditional swaddling with an infant sleeping-bag in apartments or traditional tents (Gers). Design A substudy within a randomised controlled trial. Setting Community in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. Subjects A stratified randomly selected sample of 40 swaddled and 40 non-swaddled infants recruited within 48 h of birth. Intervention Sleeping-bags and baby outfits of total thermal resistance equivalent to that of swaddled babies. Outcome measure Digital recordings of infants’ core, peripheral, environmental and microenvironmental temperatures at 30-s intervals over 24 h at ages 1 month and 3 months. Results In Gers, indoor temperatures varied greatly (<0–>25°C), but remained between 20°C and 22°C, in apartments. Despite this, heavy wrapping, bed sharing and partial head covering, infant core and peripheral temperatures were similar and no infants showed evidence of significant heat or cold stress whether they were swaddled or in sleeping-bags. At 3 months, infants in sleeping-bags showed the ‘mature’ diurnal pattern of a fall in core temperature after sleep onset, accompanied by a rise in peripheral temperature, with a reverse pattern later in the night, just before awakening. This pattern was not related to room temperature, and was absent in the swaddled infants, suggesting that the mature diurnal pattern may develop later in them. Conclusions No evidence of cold stress was found. Swaddling had no identifiable thermal advantages over sleeping-bags during the coldest times, and in centrally heated apartments could contribute to the risk of overheating during the daytime. Trial registration number ISRTN01992617. PMID:26515228

  19. Randomised controlled trial of intrapartum fetal heart rate monitoring.

    PubMed Central

    Mahomed, K.; Nyoni, R.; Mulambo, T.; Kasule, J.; Jacobus, E.

    1994-01-01

    OBJECTIVE--To compare effectiveness of different methods of monitoring intrapartum fetal heart rate. DESIGN--Prospective randomised controlled trial. SETTING--Referral maternity hospital, Harare, Zimbabwe. SUBJECTS--1255 women who were 37 weeks or more pregnant with singleton cephalic presentation and normal fetal heart rate before entry into study. INTERVENTIONS--Intermittent monitoring of fetal heart rate by electronic monitoring, Doppler ultrasound, use of Pinard stethoscope by a research midwife, or routine use of Pinard stethoscope by attending midwife. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES--Abnormal fetal heart rate patterns, need for operative delivery for fetal distress, neonatal mortality, Apgar scores, admission to neonatal unit, neonatal seizures, and hypoxic ischaemic encephalopathy. RESULTS--Abnormalities in fetal heart rate were detected in 54% (172/318) of the electronic monitoring group, 32% (100/312) of the ultrasonography group, 15% (47/310) of the Pinard stethoscope group, and 9% (28/315) of the routine monitoring group. Caesarean sections were performed for 28% (89%), 24% (76), 10% (32), and 15% (46) of the four groups respectively. Neonatal outcome was best in the ultrasonography group: hypoxic ischaemic encephalopathy occurred in two, one, seven, and 10 cases in the four groups respectively; neonatal seizures occurred only in the last two groups (six and nine cases respectively); and deaths occurred in eight, two, five, and nine cases respectively. CONCLUSIONS--Abnormalities in fetal heart rate were more reliably detected by Doppler ultrasonography than with Pinard stethoscope, and its use resulted in good perinatal outcome. The use of relatively cheap ultrasound monitors should be further evaluated and promoted in obstetric units caring for high risk pregnancies in developing countries with scarce resources. PMID:8136665

  20. Testing the activitystat hypothesis: a randomised controlled trial protocol

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background The activitystat hypothesis proposes that when physical activity or energy expenditure is increased or decreased in one domain, there will be a compensatory change in another domain to maintain an overall, stable level of physical activity or energy expenditure. To date, there has been no experimental study primarily designed to test the activitystat hypothesis in adults. The aim of this trial is to determine the effect of two different imposed exercise loads on total daily energy expenditure and physical activity levels. Methods This study will be a randomised, multi-arm, parallel controlled trial. Insufficiently active adults (as determined by the Active Australia survey) aged 18–60 years old will be recruited for this study (n=146). Participants must also satisfy the Sports Medicine Australia Pre-Exercise Screening System and must weigh less than 150 kg. Participants will be randomly assigned to one of three groups using a computer-generated allocation sequence. Participants in the Moderate exercise group will receive an additional 150 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity per week for six weeks, and those in the Extensive exercise group will receive an additional 300 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity per week for six weeks. Exercise targets will be accumulated through both group and individual exercise sessions monitored by heart rate telemetry. Control participants will not be given any instructions regarding lifestyle. The primary outcome measures are activity energy expenditure (doubly labeled water) and physical activity (accelerometry). Secondary measures will include resting metabolic rate via indirect calorimetry, use of time, maximal oxygen consumption and several anthropometric and physiological measures. Outcome measures will be conducted at baseline (zero weeks), mid- and end-intervention (three and six weeks) with three (12 weeks) and six month (24 week) follow-up. All assessors will be blinded to group

  1. Robust adaptive control for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kahveci, Nazli E.

    anti-windup compensation. Our analysis on the indirect adaptive scheme reveals that the perturbation terms due to parameter errors do not cause any unbounded signals in the closed-loop. The stability of the adaptive system is established, and the properties of the proposed control scheme are demonstrated through simulations on a UAV model with input magnitude saturation constraints. The robust adaptive control design is further developed to extend our results to rate-saturated systems.

  2. Randomised controlled trial of day patient versus inpatient psychiatric treatment.

    PubMed Central

    Creed, F; Black, D; Anthony, P; Osborn, M; Thomas, P; Tomenson, B

    1990-01-01

    OBJECTIVE--To assess the proportion of acutely ill psychiatric patients who can be treated in a day hospital and compare the outcome of day patient and inpatient treatment. DESIGN--Prospective randomised controlled trial of day patient versus inpatient treatment after exclusion of patients precluded by severity of illness or other factors from being treated as day patients. All three groups assessed at three and 12 months. SETTING--Teaching hospital serving small socially deprived inner city area. Day hospital designed to take acute admissions because of few beds. PATIENTS--175 Patients were considered, of whom 73 could not be allocated. Of the remaining 102 patients, 51 were allocated to each treatment setting but only 89 became established in treatment--namely, 41 day patients and 48 inpatients. 73 Of these 89 patients were reassessed at three months and 70 at one year. INTERVENTIONS--Standard day patient and inpatient treatment. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES--Discharge from hospital and return to previous level of social functioning; reduction of psychiatric symptoms, abnormal behaviour, and burden on relatives. RESULTS--33 Of 48 inpatients were discharged at three months compared with 17 of 41 day patients. But at one year 9 of 48 inpatients and three of 41 day patients were in hospital. 18 Of 35 day patients and 16 of 39 inpatients were at their previous level of social functioning at one year. The only significant difference at three months was a greater improvement in social role performance in the inpatients. At one year there was no significant difference between day patients and inpatients in present state examination summary scores and social role performance, burden, or behaviour. CONCLUSIONS--Roughly 40% of all acutely ill patients presenting for admission to a psychiatric unit may be treated satisfactorily in a well staffed day hospital. The outcome of treatment is similar to that of inpatient care but might possibly reduce readmissions. The hospital costs

  3. 'PhysioDirect' telephone assessment and advice services for physiotherapy: protocol for a pragmatic randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Salisbury, Chris; Foster, Nadine E; Bishop, Annette; Calnan, Michael; Coast, Jo; Hall, Jeanette; Hay, Elaine; Hollinghurst, Sandra; Hopper, Cherida; Grove, Sean; Kaur, Surinder; Montgomery, Alan

    2009-01-01

    acceptability of PhysioDirect to patients and staff, and ways in which the service could be improved. Discussion It is still relatively unusual to evaluate new forms of service delivery using randomised controlled trials. By combining rigorous trial methods with economic analysis of cost-effectiveness and qualitative research this study will provide robust evidence to inform decisions about the widespread introduction of PhysioDirect services. Trial registration Current Controlled Trials ISRCTN55666618 PMID:19650913

  4. Mobile phone SMS messages can enhance healthy behaviour: a meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials.

    PubMed

    Orr, Jayne A; King, Robert J

    2015-01-01

    Healthy behaviour, such as smoking cessation and adherence to prescribed medications, mitigates illness risk factors but health behaviour change can be challenging. Mobile phone short-message service (SMS) messages are increasingly used to deliver interventions designed to enhance healthy behaviour. This meta-analysis used a random-effects model to synthesise 38 randomised controlled trials that investigated the efficacy of SMS messages to enhance healthy behaviour. Participants (N = 19,641) lived in developed and developing countries and were diverse with respect to age, ethnicity, socioeconomic background and health behaviours targeted for change. SMS messages had a small, positive, significant effect (g = 0.291) on a broad range of healthy behaviour. This effect was maximised when multiple SMS messages per day were used (g = 0.395) compared to using lower frequencies (daily, multiple per week and once-off) (g = 0.244). The low heterogeneity in this meta-analysis (I (2) = 38.619) supports reporting a summary effect size and implies that the effect of SMS messaging is robust, regardless of population characteristics or healthy behaviour targeted. SMS messaging is a simple, cost-effective intervention that can be automated and can reach any mobile phone owner. While the effect size is small, potential health benefits are well worth achieving.

  5. Mobile phone SMS messages can enhance healthy behaviour: a meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials.

    PubMed

    Orr, Jayne A; King, Robert J

    2015-01-01

    Healthy behaviour, such as smoking cessation and adherence to prescribed medications, mitigates illness risk factors but health behaviour change can be challenging. Mobile phone short-message service (SMS) messages are increasingly used to deliver interventions designed to enhance healthy behaviour. This meta-analysis used a random-effects model to synthesise 38 randomised controlled trials that investigated the efficacy of SMS messages to enhance healthy behaviour. Participants (N = 19,641) lived in developed and developing countries and were diverse with respect to age, ethnicity, socioeconomic background and health behaviours targeted for change. SMS messages had a small, positive, significant effect (g = 0.291) on a broad range of healthy behaviour. This effect was maximised when multiple SMS messages per day were used (g = 0.395) compared to using lower frequencies (daily, multiple per week and once-off) (g = 0.244). The low heterogeneity in this meta-analysis (I (2) = 38.619) supports reporting a summary effect size and implies that the effect of SMS messaging is robust, regardless of population characteristics or healthy behaviour targeted. SMS messaging is a simple, cost-effective intervention that can be automated and can reach any mobile phone owner. While the effect size is small, potential health benefits are well worth achieving. PMID:25739668

  6. SWIM (sickle with ibuprofen and morphine) randomised controlled trial fails to recruit: lessons learnt

    PubMed Central

    Cho, Gavin; Anie, Kofi A; Buckton, Jacky; Kiilu, Patricia; Layton, Mark; Alexander, Lydia; Hemmaway, Claire; Sutton, Dorothy; Amos, Claire; Doré, Caroline J; Kahan, Brennan; Meredith, Sarah

    2016-01-01

    Objectives Sickle With Ibuprofen and Morphine (SWIM) trial was designed to assess whether co-administration of ibuprofen (a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug) resulted in a reduction of opioid consumption delivered by patient-controlled analgesia (PCA) for acute pain in sickle cell disease. Design A randomised, placebo-controlled, double-blind trial. Setting UK multicentre trial in acute hospital setting. Participants Adults with sickle cell disease of any gender and phenotype aged 16 years and over. Interventions Oral ibuprofen at a dose of 800 mg three times daily or placebo in addition to opioids (morphine or diamorphine) administered via PCA pump for up to 4 days. Main outcome measures The primary outcome measure was opioid consumption over 4 days following randomisation. Results The SWIM trial closed early because it failed to randomise to its target of 316 patients within a reasonable time. Conclusions The key issues identified include the unanticipated length of time between informed consent and randomisation, difficulties in randomisation of patients in busy emergency departments, availability of trained staff at weekends and out of hours, fewer centres than expected using PCA routinely for sickle cell pain treatment, lack of research staff and support for participation, and the trial design. There are implications for future UK trials in sickle cell disease. Trial registration number ISRCTN97241637, NCT00880373; Pre-results. PMID:27288381

  7. Robust tracking control of a magnetically suspended rigid body

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lim, Kyong B.; Cox, David E.

    1994-01-01

    This study is an application of H-infinity and micro-synthesis for designing robust tracking controllers for the Large Angle Magnetic Suspension Test Facility. The modeling, design, analysis, simulation, and testing of a control law that guarantees tracking performance under external disturbances and model uncertainties is investigated. The type of uncertainties considered and the tracking performance metric used is discussed. This study demonstrates the tradeoff between tracking performance at low frequencies and robustness at high frequencies. Two sets of controllers were designed and tested. The first set emphasized performance over robustness, while the second set traded off performance for robustness. Comparisons of simulation and test results are also included. Current simulation and experimental results indicate that reasonably good robust tracking performance can be attained for this system using multivariable robust control approach.

  8. Experimental Robust Control Studies on an Unstable Magnetic Suspension System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lim, Kyong B.; Cox, David E.

    1993-01-01

    This study is an experimental investigation of the robustness of various controllers designed for the Large Angle Magnetic Suspension Test Fixture (LAMSTF). Both analytical and identified nominal models are used for designing controllers along with two different types of uncertainty models. Robustness refers to maintain- ing tracking performance under analytical model errors and dynamically induced eddy currents, while external disturbances are not considered. Results show that incorporating robustness into analytical models gives significantly better results. However, incorporating incorrect uncertainty models may lead to poorer performance than not designing for robustness at all. Designing controllers based on accurate identified models gave the best performance. In fact, incorporating a significant level of robustness into an accurate nominal model resulted in reduced performance. This paper discusses an assortment of experimental results in a consistent manner using robust control theory.

  9. Robust tracking control of a magnetically suspended rigid body

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lim, Kyong B.; Cox, David E.

    1993-01-01

    This study is an application of H-infinity and microsynthesis for designing robust tracking controllers for the Large Angle Magnetic Suspension Test Facility. The modeling, design, analysis, simulation, and testing of a control law that guarantees tracking performance under external disturbances and model uncertainties is investigated. The type of uncertainties considered and the tracking performance metric used is discussed. This study demonstrates the tradeoff between tracking performance at low frequencies and robustness at high frequencies. Two sets of controllers were designed and tested. The first set emphasized performance over robustness, while the second set traded off performance for robustness. Comparisons of simulation and test results are also included. Current simulation and experimental results indicate that reasonably good robust tracking performance can be attained for this system, using multivariable robust control approach.

  10. Integrated identification and robust control tuning for large space structures

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yam, Y.; Bayard, D. S.; Scheid, R. E.

    1990-01-01

    System identification is studied for the explicit purpose of supporting modern H-infinity robust control design objectives. In the analysis, the true plant is not assumed to be in the identification model set. An integrated identification/robust control problem is posed in which the optimal solution guarantees the best robust performance relative to the system information contained in a given experimental data set. A numerical example demonstrating an approximate solution to the problem indicates the usefulness of the approach.

  11. Skills Training to Avoid Inadvertent Plagiarism: Results from a Randomised Control Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Newton, Fiona J.; Wright, Jill D.; Newton, Joshua D.

    2014-01-01

    Plagiarism continues to be a concern within academic institutions. The current study utilised a randomised control trial of 137 new entry tertiary students to assess the efficacy of a scalable short training session on paraphrasing, patch writing and plagiarism. The results indicate that the training significantly enhanced students' overall…

  12. Reading and Language Intervention for Children at Risk of Dyslexia: A Randomised Controlled Trial

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Duff, Fiona J.; Hulme, Charles; Grainger, Katy; Hardwick, Samantha J.; Miles, Jeremy N. V.; Snowling, Margaret J.

    2014-01-01

    Background: Intervention studies for children at risk of dyslexia have typically been delivered preschool, and show short-term effects on letter knowledge and phoneme awareness, with little transfer to literacy. Methods: This randomised controlled trial evaluated the effectiveness of a reading and language intervention for 6-year-old children…

  13. Educational Benefits of Using Game Consoles in a Primary Classroom: A Randomised Controlled Trial

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Miller, David J.; Robertson, Derek P.

    2011-01-01

    It is known that computer games are motivating for children, but there is limited direct evidence of their effects on classroom learning. The studies that are available tend to be limited in terms of output data reported, or small in scale, or both. The aim of this randomised controlled trial was to upscale a recent study by Miller and Robertson…

  14. Review of Randomised Controlled Trials of Internet Interventions for Mental Disorders and Related Conditions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Griffiths, Kathleen M.; Christensen, Helen

    2006-01-01

    Self-help Internet interventions have the potential to enable consumers to play a central role in managing their own health. This paper contains a systematic review of 15 randomised controlled trials of the effectiveness of self-help Internet interventions for mental disorders and related conditions. Conditions addressed by the interventions…

  15. Intelligence and Persisting with Medication for Two Years: Analysis in a Randomised Controlled Trial

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Deary, Ian J.; Gale, Catharine R.; Stewart, Marlene C. W.; Fowkes, F. Gerald R.; Murray, Gordon D.; Batty, G. David; Price, Jacqueline F.

    2009-01-01

    The study examined whether verbal intelligence is associated with persisting to take medication for up to two years. The design is a prospective follow-up of compliance with taking medication in high-risk individuals participating in a randomised, placebo-controlled trial set in Central Scotland. Participants were 1993 people aged between 50 and…

  16. Stress in Fathers of Moderately and Late Preterm Infants: A Randomised Controlled Trial

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ravn, Ingrid Helen; Lindemann, Rolf; Smeby, Nina Aarhus; Bunch, Eli Haugen; Sandvik, Leiv; Smith, Lars

    2012-01-01

    The atypical behaviour of preterm infants can elicit stress in fathers and influence their ability to perceive and interpret infants' cues. This study investigated whether fathers of moderately and late preterm infants were more stressed than fathers of term infants. In a randomised controlled trial, we also studied the effect of the Mother-Infant…

  17. A criterion for joint optimization of identification and robust control

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bayard, D. S.; Yam, Y.; Mettler, E.

    1992-01-01

    A criterion for system identification is developed that is consistent with the intended used of the fitted model for modern robust control synthesis. Specifically, a joint optimization problem is posed which simultaneously solves the plant model estimate and control design, so as to optimize robust performance over the set of plants consistent with a specified experimental data set.

  18. Gabapentin for the Management of Chronic Pelvic Pain in Women (GaPP1): A Pilot Randomised Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    Lewis, Steff C.; Bhattacharya, Siladitya; Wu, Olivia; Vincent, Katy; Jack, Stuart A.; Critchley, Hilary O. D.; Porter, Maureen A.; Cranley, Denise; Wilson, John A.; Horne, Andrew W.

    2016-01-01

    Chronic pelvic pain (CPP) affects 2.1–24% of women. Frequently, no underlying pathology is identified, and the pain is difficult to manage. Gabapentin is prescribed for CPP despite no robust evidence of efficacy. We performed a pilot trial in two UK centres to inform the planning of a future multicentre RCT to evaluate gabapentin in CPP management. Our primary objective was to determine levels of participant recruitment and retention. Secondary objectives included estimating potential effectiveness, acceptability to participants of trial methodology, and cost-effectiveness of gabapentin. Women with CPP and no obvious pelvic pathology were assigned to an increasing regimen of gabapentin (300-2700mg daily) or placebo. We calculated the proportion of eligible women randomised, and of randomised participants who were followed up to six months. The analyses by treatment group were by intention-to-treat. Interviews were conducted to evaluate women’s experiences of the trial. A probabilistic decision analytical model was used to estimate cost-effectiveness. Between September 2012–2013, 47 women (34% of those eligible) were randomised (22 to gabapentin, 25 to placebo), and 25 (53%) completed six-month follow-up. Participants on gabapentin had less pain (BPI difference 1.72 points, 95% CI:0.07–3.36), and an improvement in mood (HADS difference 4.35 points, 95% CI:1.97–6.73) at six months than those allocated placebo. The majority of participants described their trial experience favorably. At the UK threshold for willingness-to-pay, the probabilities of gabapentin or no treatment being cost-effective are similar. A pilot trial assessing gabapentin for CPP was feasible, but uncertainty remains, highlighting the need for a large definitive trial. Trial registration Controlled-Trials.com ISRCTN45178534 PMID:27070434

  19. Robust adaptive vibration control of a flexible structure.

    PubMed

    Khoshnood, A M; Moradi, H M

    2014-07-01

    Different types of L1 adaptive control systems show that using robust theories with adaptive control approaches has produced high performance controllers. In this study, a model reference adaptive control scheme considering robust theories is used to propose a practical control system for vibration suppression of a flexible launch vehicle (FLV). In this method, control input of the system is shaped from the dynamic model of the vehicle and components of the control input are adaptively constructed by estimating the undesirable vibration frequencies. Robust stability of the adaptive vibration control system is guaranteed by using the L1 small gain theorem. Simulation results of the robust adaptive vibration control strategy confirm that the effects of vibration on the vehicle performance considerably decrease without the loss of the phase margin of the system.

  20. Stochastic robustness of linear control systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stengel, Robert F.; Ryan, Laura E.

    1990-01-01

    A simple numerical procedure for estimating the stochastic robustness of a linear, time-invariant system is described. Monte Carlo evaluation of the system's eigenvalues allows the probability of instability and the related stochastic root locus to be estimated. This definition of robustness is an alternative to existing deterministic definitions that address both structured and unstructured parameter variations directly. This analysis approach treats not only Gaussian parameter uncertainties but non-Gaussian cases, including uncertain-but-bounded variations. Trivial extensions of the procedure admit alternate discriminants to be considered. Thus, the probabilities that stipulated degrees of instability will be exceeded or that closed-loop roots will leave desirable regions also can be estimated. Results are particularly amenable to graphical presentation.

  1. Influence of Vitamin E Supplementation on Glycaemic Control: A Meta-Analysis of Randomised Controlled Trials

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Renfan; Zhang, Shasha; Tao, Anyu; Chen, Guangzhi; Zhang, Muxun

    2014-01-01

    Observational studies have revealed that higher serum vitamin E concentrations and increased vitamin E intake and vitamin E supplementation are associated with beneficial effects on glycaemic control in type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). However, whether vitamin E supplementation exerts a definitive effect on glycaemic control remains unclear. This article involves a meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials of vitamin E to better characterise its impact on HbA1c, fasting glucose and fasting insulin. PubMed, EMBASE and the Cochrane Library were electronically searched from the earliest possible date through April 2013 for all relevant studies. Weighted mean difference (WMD) was calculated for net changes using fixed-effects or random-effects models. Standard methods for assessing statistical heterogeneity and publication bias were used. Fourteen randomised controlled trials involving individual data on 714 subjects were collected in this meta-analysis. Increased vitamin E supplementation did not result in significant benefits in glycaemic control as measured by reductions in HbA1c, fasting glucose and fasting insulin. Subgroup analyses revealed a significant reduction in HbA1c (−0.58%, 95% CI −0.83 to −0.34) and fasting insulin (−9.0 pmol/l, 95% CI −15.90 to −2.10) compared with controls in patients with low baseline vitamin E status. Subgroup analyses also demonstrated that the outcomes may have been influenced by the vitamin E dosage, study duration, ethnic group, serum HbA1c concentration, and fasting glucose control status. In conclusion, there is currently insufficient evidence to support a potential beneficial effect of vitamin E supplementation on improvements of HbA1c and fasting glucose and insulin concentrations in subjects with T2DM. PMID:24740143

  2. Robustness Analysis and Optimally Robust Control Design via Sum-of-Squares

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dorobantu, Andrei; Crespo, Luis G.; Seiler, Peter J.

    2012-01-01

    A control analysis and design framework is proposed for systems subject to parametric uncertainty. The underlying strategies are based on sum-of-squares (SOS) polynomial analysis and nonlinear optimization to design an optimally robust controller. The approach determines a maximum uncertainty range for which the closed-loop system satisfies a set of stability and performance requirements. These requirements, de ned as inequality constraints on several metrics, are restricted to polynomial functions of the uncertainty. To quantify robustness, SOS analysis is used to prove that the closed-loop system complies with the requirements for a given uncertainty range. The maximum uncertainty range, calculated by assessing a sequence of increasingly larger ranges, serves as a robustness metric for the closed-loop system. To optimize the control design, nonlinear optimization is used to enlarge the maximum uncertainty range by tuning the controller gains. Hence, the resulting controller is optimally robust to parametric uncertainty. This approach balances the robustness margins corresponding to each requirement in order to maximize the aggregate system robustness. The proposed framework is applied to a simple linear short-period aircraft model with uncertain aerodynamic coefficients.

  3. Robust attitude tracking control of small-scale unmanned helicopter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Xiafu; Chen, You; Lu, Geng; Zhong, Yisheng

    2015-06-01

    Robust attitude control problem for small-scale unmanned helicopters is investigated to improve attitude control performances of roll and pitch channels under both small and large amplitude manoeuvre flight conditions. The model of the roll or pitch angular dynamics is regarded as a nominal single-input single-output linear system with equivalent disturbances which contain nonlinear uncertainties, coupling-effects, parameter perturbations, and external disturbances. Based on the signal compensation method, a robust controller is designed with two parts: a proportional-derivative controller and a robust compensator. The designed controller is linear and time-invariant, so it can be easily realised. The robust properties of the closed-loop system are proven. According to the ADS-33E-PRF military rotorcraft standard, the controller can achieve top control performances. Experimental results demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed control strategy.

  4. Cost averaging techniques for robust control of flexible structural systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hagood, Nesbitt W.; Crawley, Edward F.

    1991-01-01

    Viewgraphs on cost averaging techniques for robust control of flexible structural systems are presented. Topics covered include: modeling of parameterized systems; average cost analysis; reduction of parameterized systems; and static and dynamic controller synthesis.

  5. Adaptive robust control of the EBR-II reactor

    SciTech Connect

    Power, M.A.; Edwards, R.M.

    1996-05-01

    Simulation results are presented for an adaptive H{sub {infinity}} controller, a fixed H{sub {infinity}} controller, and a classical controller. The controllers are applied to a simulation of the Experimental Breeder Reactor II primary system. The controllers are tested for the best robustness and performance by step-changing the demanded reactor power and by varying the combined uncertainty in initial reactor power and control rod worth. The adaptive H{sub {infinity}} controller shows the fastest settling time, fastest rise time and smallest peak overshoot when compared to the fixed H{sub {infinity}} and classical controllers. This makes for a superior and more robust controller.

  6. A pilot randomised controlled trial of cognitive behavioural therapy for antenatal depression

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Few trials have evaluated the effectiveness of psychological treatment in improving depression by the end of pregnancy. This is the first pilot randomised controlled trial (RCT) of individual cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) looking at treating depression by the end of pregnancy. Our aim was to assess the feasibility of delivering a CBT intervention modified for antenatal depression during pregnancy. Methods Women in North Bristol, UK between 8–18 weeks pregnant were recruited through routine contact with midwives and randomised to receive up to 12 sessions of individual CBT in addition to usual care or to continue with usual care only. Women were eligible for randomisation if they screened positive on a 3-question depression screen used routinely by midwives and met ICD-10 criteria for depression assessed using the clinical interview schedule – revised version (CIS-R). Two CBT therapists delivered the intervention. Follow-up was at 15 and 33 weeks post-randomisation when assessments of mental health were made using measures which included the CIS-R. Results Of the 50 women assessed for the trial, 36 met ICD-10 depression criteria and were randomised: 18 to the intervention and 18 to usual care. Thirteen of the 18 (72%) women who were allocated to receive the intervention completed 9 or more sessions of CBT before the end of pregnancy. Follow-up rates at 15 and 33 weeks post-randomisation were higher in the group who received the intervention (89% vs. 72% at 15 weeks and 89% vs. 61% at 33 weeks post-randomisation). At 15 weeks post-randomisation (the end of pregnancy), there were more women in the intervention group (11/16; 68.7%) who recovered (i.e. no longer met ICD-10 criteria for depression), than those receiving only usual care (5/13; 38.5%). Conclusions This pilot trial shows the feasibility of conducting a large RCT to assess the effectiveness of CBT for treating antenatal depression before the end of pregnancy. The intervention could

  7. Conductive Education as a Method of Stroke Rehabilitation: A Single Blinded Randomised Controlled Feasibility Study

    PubMed Central

    Jutley-Neilson, Jagjeet; Russell, Nicholas C. C.; Sackley, Catherine M.

    2016-01-01

    Background. Conductive Education for stroke survivors has shown promise but randomised evidence is unavailable. This study assessed the feasibility of a definitive randomised controlled trial to evaluate efficacy. Methods. Adult stroke survivors were recruited through local community notices. Those completing the baseline assessment were randomised using an online program and group allocation was independent. Intervention group participants received 10 weekly 1.5-hour sessions of Conductive Education at the National Institute of Conductive Education in Birmingham, UK. The control group participants attended two group meetings. The study evaluated the feasibility of recruitment procedures, delivery of the intervention, retention of participants, and appropriateness of outcome measures and data collection methods. Independent assessments included the Barthel Index, the Stroke Impact Scale, the Timed Up and Go test, and the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale. Results. Eighty-two patients were enrolled; 77 completed the baseline assessment (46 men, mean age 62.1 yrs.) and were randomised. 70 commenced the intervention (n = 37) or an equivalent waiting period (n = 33). 32/37 completed the 10-week training and 32/33 the waiting period. There were no missing items from completed questionnaires and no adverse events. Discussion. Recruitment, intervention, and assessment methods worked well. Transport issues for intervention and assessment appointments require review. Conclusion. A definitive trial is feasible. This trial is registered with ISRCTN84064492. PMID:27418997

  8. Robust Control Design for Systems With Probabilistic Uncertainty

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Crespo, Luis G.; Kenny, Sean P.

    2005-01-01

    This paper presents a reliability- and robustness-based formulation for robust control synthesis for systems with probabilistic uncertainty. In a reliability-based formulation, the probability of violating design requirements prescribed by inequality constraints is minimized. In a robustness-based formulation, a metric which measures the tendency of a random variable/process to cluster close to a target scalar/function is minimized. A multi-objective optimization procedure, which combines stability and performance requirements in time and frequency domains, is used to search for robustly optimal compensators. Some of the fundamental differences between the proposed strategy and conventional robust control methods are: (i) unnecessary conservatism is eliminated since there is not need for convex supports, (ii) the most likely plants are favored during synthesis allowing for probabilistic robust optimality, (iii) the tradeoff between robust stability and robust performance can be explored numerically, (iv) the uncertainty set is closely related to parameters with clear physical meaning, and (v) compensators with improved robust characteristics for a given control structure can be synthesized.

  9. Robust on-off pulse control of flexible space vehicles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wie, Bong; Sinha, Ravi

    1993-01-01

    The on-off reaction jet control system is often used for attitude and orbital maneuvering of various spacecraft. Future space vehicles such as the orbital transfer vehicles, orbital maneuvering vehicles, and space station will extensively use reaction jets for orbital maneuvering and attitude stabilization. The proposed robust fuel- and time-optimal control algorithm is used for a three-mass spacing model of flexible spacecraft. A fuel-efficient on-off control logic is developed for robust rest-to-rest maneuver of a flexible vehicle with minimum excitation of structural modes. The first part of this report is concerned with the problem of selecting a proper pair of jets for practical trade-offs among the maneuvering time, fuel consumption, structural mode excitation, and performance robustness. A time-optimal control problem subject to parameter robustness constraints is formulated and solved. The second part of this report deals with obtaining parameter insensitive fuel- and time- optimal control inputs by solving a constrained optimization problem subject to robustness constraints. It is shown that sensitivity to modeling errors can be significantly reduced by the proposed, robustified open-loop control approach. The final part of this report deals with sliding mode control design for uncertain flexible structures. The benchmark problem of a flexible structure is used as an example for the feedback sliding mode controller design with bounded control inputs and robustness to parameter variations is investigated.

  10. Robust tuning of robot control systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Minis, I.; Uebel, M.

    1992-01-01

    The computed torque control problem is examined for a robot arm with flexible, geared, joint drive systems which are typical in many industrial robots. The standard computed torque algorithm is not directly applicable to this class of manipulators because of the dynamics introduced by the joint drive system. The proposed approach to computed torque control combines a computed torque algorithm with torque controller at each joint. Three such control schemes are proposed. The first scheme uses the joint torque control system currently implemented on the robot arm and a novel form of the computed torque algorithm. The other two use the standard computed torque algorithm and a novel model following torque control system based on model following techniques. Standard tasks and performance indices are used to evaluate the performance of the controllers. Both numerical simulations and experiments are used in evaluation. The study shows that all three proposed systems lead to improved tracking performance over a conventional PD controller.

  11. A Robustly Stabilizing Model Predictive Control Algorithm

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ackmece, A. Behcet; Carson, John M., III

    2007-01-01

    A model predictive control (MPC) algorithm that differs from prior MPC algorithms has been developed for controlling an uncertain nonlinear system. This algorithm guarantees the resolvability of an associated finite-horizon optimal-control problem in a receding-horizon implementation.

  12. Closed-loop and robust control of quantum systems.

    PubMed

    Chen, Chunlin; Wang, Lin-Cheng; Wang, Yuanlong

    2013-01-01

    For most practical quantum control systems, it is important and difficult to attain robustness and reliability due to unavoidable uncertainties in the system dynamics or models. Three kinds of typical approaches (e.g., closed-loop learning control, feedback control, and robust control) have been proved to be effective to solve these problems. This work presents a self-contained survey on the closed-loop and robust control of quantum systems, as well as a brief introduction to a selection of basic theories and methods in this research area, to provide interested readers with a general idea for further studies. In the area of closed-loop learning control of quantum systems, we survey and introduce such learning control methods as gradient-based methods, genetic algorithms (GA), and reinforcement learning (RL) methods from a unified point of view of exploring the quantum control landscapes. For the feedback control approach, the paper surveys three control strategies including Lyapunov control, measurement-based control, and coherent-feedback control. Then such topics in the field of quantum robust control as H(∞) control, sliding mode control, quantum risk-sensitive control, and quantum ensemble control are reviewed. The paper concludes with a perspective of future research directions that are likely to attract more attention.

  13. Modern CACSD using the Robust-Control Toolbox

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chiang, Richard Y.; Safonov, Michael G.

    1989-01-01

    The Robust-Control Toolbox is a collection of 40 M-files which extend the capability of PC/PRO-MATLAB to do modern multivariable robust control system design. Included are robust analysis tools like singular values and structured singular values, robust synthesis tools like continuous/discrete H(exp 2)/H infinity synthesis and Linear Quadratic Gaussian Loop Transfer Recovery methods and a variety of robust model reduction tools such as Hankel approximation, balanced truncation and balanced stochastic truncation, etc. The capabilities of the toolbox are described and illustated with examples to show how easily they can be used in practice. Examples include structured singular value analysis, H infinity loop-shaping and large space structure model reduction.

  14. Vehicle active steering control research based on two-DOF robust internal model control

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Jian; Liu, Yahui; Wang, Fengbo; Bao, Chunjiang; Sun, Qun; Zhao, Youqun

    2016-07-01

    Because of vehicle's external disturbances and model uncertainties, robust control algorithms have obtained popularity in vehicle stability control. The robust control usually gives up performance in order to guarantee the robustness of the control algorithm, therefore an improved robust internal model control(IMC) algorithm blending model tracking and internal model control is put forward for active steering system in order to reach high performance of yaw rate tracking with certain robustness. The proposed algorithm inherits the good model tracking ability of the IMC control and guarantees robustness to model uncertainties. In order to separate the design process of model tracking from the robustness design process, the improved 2 degree of freedom(DOF) robust internal model controller structure is given from the standard Youla parameterization. Simulations of double lane change maneuver and those of crosswind disturbances are conducted for evaluating the robust control algorithm, on the basis of a nonlinear vehicle simulation model with a magic tyre model. Results show that the established 2-DOF robust IMC method has better model tracking ability and a guaranteed level of robustness and robust performance, which can enhance the vehicle stability and handling, regardless of variations of the vehicle model parameters and the external crosswind interferences. Contradiction between performance and robustness of active steering control algorithm is solved and higher control performance with certain robustness to model uncertainties is obtained.

  15. Computation of robustly stabilizing PID controllers for interval systems.

    PubMed

    Matušů, Radek; Prokop, Roman

    2016-01-01

    The paper is focused on the computation of all possible robustly stabilizing Proportional-Integral-Derivative (PID) controllers for plants with interval uncertainty. The main idea of the proposed method is based on Tan's (et al.) technique for calculation of (nominally) stabilizing PI and PID controllers or robustly stabilizing PI controllers by means of plotting the stability boundary locus in either P-I plane or P-I-D space. Refinement of the existing method by consideration of 16 segment plants instead of 16 Kharitonov plants provides an elegant and efficient tool for finding all robustly stabilizing PID controllers for an interval system. The validity and relatively effortless application of presented theoretical concepts are demonstrated through a computation and simulation example in which the uncertain mathematical model of an experimental oblique wing aircraft is robustly stabilized. PMID:27350931

  16. Panaceas, uncertainty, and the robust control framework in sustainability science

    PubMed Central

    Anderies, John M.; Rodriguez, Armando A.; Janssen, Marco A.; Cifdaloz, Oguzhan

    2007-01-01

    A critical challenge faced by sustainability science is to develop strategies to cope with highly uncertain social and ecological dynamics. This article explores the use of the robust control framework toward this end. After briefly outlining the robust control framework, we apply it to the traditional Gordon–Schaefer fishery model to explore fundamental performance–robustness and robustness–vulnerability trade-offs in natural resource management. We find that the classic optimal control policy can be very sensitive to parametric uncertainty. By exploring a large class of alternative strategies, we show that there are no panaceas: even mild robustness properties are difficult to achieve, and increasing robustness to some parameters (e.g., biological parameters) results in decreased robustness with respect to others (e.g., economic parameters). On the basis of this example, we extract some broader themes for better management of resources under uncertainty and for sustainability science in general. Specifically, we focus attention on the importance of a continual learning process and the use of robust control to inform this process. PMID:17881574

  17. Robust Adaptive Control In Hilbert Space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wen, John Ting-Yung; Balas, Mark J.

    1990-01-01

    Paper discusses generalization of scheme for adaptive control of finite-dimensional system to infinite-dimensional Hilbert space. Approach involves generalization of command-generator tracker (CGT) theory. Does not require reference model to be same order as that of plant, and knowledge of order of plant not needed. Suitable for application to high-order systems, main emphasis on adjustment of low-order feedback-gain matrix. Analysis particularly relevant to control of large, flexible structures.

  18. Controlled quantum dialogue robust against conspiring users

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kao, Shih-Hung; Hwang, Tzonelih

    2016-10-01

    This paper explores a new security problem in controlled quantum dialogue (CQD) protocols, where the communicants may try to conspire to communicate without the controller's permission. According to our survey, all the previous CQD protocols suffer from this attack. In order to resolve this problem, we also present an improvement protocol. The security analyses show that the improved scheme is secure under this and other well-known attacks.

  19. Controlled quantum dialogue robust against conspiring users

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kao, Shih-Hung; Hwang, Tzonelih

    2016-07-01

    This paper explores a new security problem in controlled quantum dialogue (CQD) protocols, where the communicants may try to conspire to communicate without the controller's permission. According to our survey, all the previous CQD protocols suffer from this attack. In order to resolve this problem, we also present an improvement protocol. The security analyses show that the improved scheme is secure under this and other well-known attacks.

  20. Robust predictive cruise control for commercial vehicles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Junell, Jaime; Tumer, Kagan

    2013-10-01

    In this paper we explore learning-based predictive cruise control and the impact of this technology on increasing fuel efficiency for commercial trucks. Traditional cruise control is wasteful when maintaining a constant velocity over rolling hills. Predictive cruise control (PCC) is able to look ahead at future road conditions and solve for a cost-effective course of action. Model- based controllers have been implemented in this field but cannot accommodate many complexities of a dynamic environment which includes changing road and vehicle conditions. In this work, we focus on incorporating a learner into an already successful model- based predictive cruise controller in order to improve its performance. We explore back propagating neural networks to predict future errors then take actions to prevent said errors from occurring. The results show that this approach improves the model based PCC by up to 60% under certain conditions. In addition, we explore the benefits of classifier ensembles to further improve the gains due to intelligent cruise control.

  1. Robust H∞ Control for Spacecraft Rendezvous with a Noncooperative Target

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Shu-Nan; Zhou, Wen-Ya; Tan, Shu-Jun; Wu, Guo-Qiang

    2013-01-01

    The robust H∞ control for spacecraft rendezvous with a noncooperative target is addressed in this paper. The relative motion of chaser and noncooperative target is firstly modeled as the uncertain system, which contains uncertain orbit parameter and mass. Then the H∞ performance and finite time performance are proposed, and a robust H∞ controller is developed to drive the chaser to rendezvous with the non-cooperative target in the presence of control input saturation, measurement error, and thrust error. The linear matrix inequality technology is used to derive the sufficient condition of the proposed controller. An illustrative example is finally provided to demonstrate the effectiveness of the controller. PMID:24027446

  2. Chinese Obstetrics & Gynecology journal club: a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Tsui, Ilene K; Dodson, William C; Kunselman, Allen R; Kuang, Hongying; Han, Feng-Juan; Legro, Richard S; Wu, Xiao-Ke

    2016-01-01

    Objectives To assess whether a journal club model could improve comprehension and written and spoken medical English in a population of Chinese medical professionals. Setting and participants The study population consisted of 52 medical professionals who were residents or postgraduate master or PhD students in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Heilongjiang University of Chinese Medicine, China. Intervention After a three-part baseline examination to assess medical English comprehension, participants were randomised to either (1) an intensive journal club treatment arm or (2) a self-study group. At the conclusion of the 8-week intervention participants (n=52) were re-tested with new questions. Outcome measures The primary outcome was the change in score on a multiple choice examination. Secondary outcomes included change in scores on written and oral examinations which were modelled on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). Results Both groups had improved scores on the multiple choice examination without a statistically significant difference between them (90% power). However, there was a statistically significant difference between the groups in mean improvement in scores for both written (95% CI 1.1 to 5.0; p=0.003) and spoken English (95% CI 0.06 to 3.7; p=0.04) favouring the journal club intervention. Conclusions Interacting with colleagues and an English-speaking facilitator in a journal club improved both written and spoken medical English in Chinese medical professionals. Journal clubs may be suitable for use as a self-sustainable teaching model to improve fluency in medical English in foreign medical professionals. Trial registration number NCT01844609. PMID:26823180

  3. Metacognitive training for schizophrenia: a multicentre randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Briki, Malick; Monnin, Julie; Haffen, Emmanuel; Sechter, Daniel; Favrod, Jérôme; Netillard, Christian; Cheraitia, Elisabeth; Marin, Karine; Govyadovskaya, Svetlana; Tio, Grégory; Bonin, Bernard; Chauvet-Gelinier, Jean-Christophe; Leclerc, Stéphanie; Hodé, Yann; Vidailhet, Pierre; Berna, Fabrice; Bertschy, Anna Zinetti; Vandel, Pierre

    2014-08-01

    A psychotherapeutic approach for schizophrenia is now recommended as an adjuvant for psychopharmacology, since antipsychotic medications only have a partial impact especially as regards positive symptoms and insight. In addition, cognitive distortions and the lack of metacognitive skills might increase positive symptoms leading to poor social functioning. This underlines the need for specific approaches which target cognitive processes relevant for insight, and abilities in metacognition. Metacognitive training (MCT) is a structured group intervention, which enhances a patient's reflection on cognitive biases and improves problem-solving. The aim of our study was to assess MCTs' short term impact on insight, symptoms and quality of life. Fifty patients with schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorders and persistent positive symptoms (delusions or hallucinations) were enrolled in the study. After baseline assessment participants were randomised either to supportive therapy or MCT. Both groups used the same design (1h-session twice a week during 8weeks) although the basic knowledge given to participants was different between interventions. Participants were assessed at eight weeks based on the Scale to Assess Unawareness of Mental Disorder, Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS), Psychotic Symptom Rating Scales, the Calgary Depression Scale for Schizophrenia and the Quality of Life Scale. Between-group differences were significant in favour of MCT on the PANSS positive scale. Between-group differences in post- and pre-test values showed a trend in favour of MCT for insight on hallucinations. Results of our study indicate that the MCT has an effect on reducing positive symptomatology, and a trend impact on insight and social functioning. PMID:24972754

  4. Robust Control for the Mercury Laser Altimeter

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rosenberg, Jacob S.

    2006-01-01

    Mercury Laser Altimeter Science Algorithms is a software system for controlling the laser altimeter aboard the Messenger spacecraft, which is to enter into orbit about Mercury in 2011. The software will control the altimeter by dynamically modifying hardware inputs for gain, threshold, channel-disable flags, range-window start location, and range-window width, by using ranging information provided by the spacecraft and noise counts from instrument hardware. In addition, because of severe bandwidth restrictions, the software also selects returns for downlink.

  5. Calculating the probability of random sampling for continuous variables in submitted or published randomised controlled trials.

    PubMed

    Carlisle, J B; Dexter, F; Pandit, J J; Shafer, S L; Yentis, S M

    2015-07-01

    In a previous paper, one of the authors (JBC) used a chi-squared method to analyse the means (SD) of baseline variables, such as height or weight, from randomised controlled trials by Fujii et al., concluding that the probabilities that the reported distributions arose by chance were infinitesimally small. Subsequent testing of that chi-squared method, using simulation, suggested that the method was incorrect. This paper corrects the chi-squared method and tests its performance and the performance of Monte Carlo simulations and ANOVA to analyse the probability of random sampling. The corrected chi-squared method and ANOVA method became inaccurate when applied to means that were reported imprecisely. Monte Carlo simulations confirmed that baseline data from 158 randomised controlled trials by Fujii et al. were different to those from 329 trials published by other authors and that the distribution of Fujii et al.'s data were different to the expected distribution, both p < 10(-16) . The number of Fujii randomised controlled trials with unlikely distributions was less with Monte Carlo simulation than with the 2012 chi-squared method: 102 vs 117 trials with p < 0.05; 60 vs 86 for p < 0.01; 30 vs 56 for p < 0.001; and 12 vs 24 for p < 0.00001, respectively. The Monte Carlo analysis nevertheless confirmed the original conclusion that the distribution of the data presented by Fujii et al. was extremely unlikely to have arisen from observed data. The Monte Carlo analysis may be an appropriate screening tool to check for non-random (i.e. unreliable) data in randomised controlled trials submitted to journals.

  6. Randomised controlled trial of topical kanuka honey for the treatment of acne

    PubMed Central

    Semprini, Alex; Corin, Andrew; Sheahan, Davitt; Tofield, Christopher; Helm, Colin; Montgomery, Barney; Fingleton, James; Weatherall, Mark; Beasley, Richard

    2016-01-01

    Objective To investigate the efficacy of Honevo, a topical 90% medical-grade kanuka honey, and 10% glycerine (honey product) as a treatment for facial acne. Design Randomised controlled trial with single blind assessment of primary outcome variable. Setting Outpatient primary care from 3 New Zealand localities. Participants Of 136 participants aged between 16 and 40 years with a diagnosis of acne and baseline Investigator's Global Assessment (IGA) for acne score of ≥2.68, participants were randomised to each treatment arm. Interventions All participants applied Protex, a triclocarban-based antibacterial soap twice daily for 12 weeks. Participants randomised to the honey product treatment arm applied this directly after washing off the antibacterial soap, twice daily for 12 weeks. Outcome measures The primary outcome was ≥2 point decrease in IGA score from baseline at 12 weeks. Secondary outcomes included mean lesion counts and changes in subject-rated acne improvement and severity at weeks 4 and 12, and withdrawals for worsening acne. Results 4/53 (7.6%) participants in the honey product group and 1/53 (1.9%) of participants in the control group had a ≥ 2 improvement in IGA score at week 12, compared with baseline, OR (95% CI) for improvement 4.2 (0.5 to 39.3), p=0.17. There were 15 and 14 participants who withdrew from the honey product group and control group, respectively. Conclusions This randomised controlled trial did not find evidence that addition of medical-grade kanuka honey in combination with 10% glycerine to standard antibacterial soap treatment is more effective than the use of antibacterial soap alone in the treatment of acne. Trial registration number ACTRN12614000003673; Results. PMID:26832428

  7. Social Stories in mainstream schools for children with autism spectrum disorder: a feasibility randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Marshall, David; Wright, Barry; Allgar, Victoria; Adamson, Joy; Williams, Christine; Ainsworth, Hannah; Cook, Liz; Varley, Danielle; Hackney, Lisa; Dempster, Paul; Ali, Shehzad; Trepel, Dominic; Collingridge Moore, Danielle; Littlewood, Elizabeth; McMillan, Dean

    2016-01-01

    Objectives To assess the feasibility of recruitment, retention, outcome measures and intervention training/delivery among teachers, parents and children. To calculate a sample size estimation for full trial. Design A single-centre, unblinded, cluster feasibility randomised controlled trial examining Social Stories delivered within a school environment compared with an attentional control. Setting 37 primary schools in York, UK. Participants 50 participants were recruited and a cluster randomisation approach by school was examined. Participants were randomised into the treatment group (n=23) or a waiting list control group (n=27). Outcome measures Acceptability and feasibility of the trial, intervention and of measurements required to assess outcomes in a definitive trial. Results An assessment of the questionnaire completion rates indicated teachers would be most appropriate to complete the primary outcome measure. 2 outcome measures: the Social Responsiveness Scale (SRS)-2 and a goal-based measure showed both the highest levels of completion rates (above 80%) at the primary follow-up point (6 weeks postintervention) and captured relevant social and behaviour outcomes. Power calculations were based on these 2 outcome measures leading to a total proposed sample size of 180 participant groups. Conclusions Results suggest that a future trial would be feasible to conduct and could inform the policy and practice of using Social Stories in mainstream schools. Trial registration number ISRCTN96286707; Results. PMID:27515756

  8. Specificity and robustness in transcription control networks.

    PubMed

    Sengupta, Anirvan M; Djordjevic, Marko; Shraiman, Boris I

    2002-02-19

    Recognition by transcription factors of the regulatory DNA elements upstream of genes is the fundamental step in controlling gene expression. How does the necessity to provide stability with respect to mutation constrain the organization of transcription control networks? We examine the mutation load of a transcription factor interacting with a set of n regulatory response elements as a function of the factor/DNA binding specificity and conclude on theoretical grounds that the optimal specificity decreases with n. The predicted correlation between variability of binding sites (for a given transcription factor) and their number is supported by the genomic data for Escherichia coli. The analysis of E. coli genomic data was carried out using an algorithm suggested by the biophysical model of transcription factor/DNA binding. Complete results of the search for candidate transcription factor binding sites are available at http://www.physics.rockefeller.edu/~boris/public/search_ecoli. PMID:11854503

  9. A Robust Control Design Framework for Substructure Models

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lim, Kyong B.

    1994-01-01

    A framework for designing control systems directly from substructure models and uncertainties is proposed. The technique is based on combining a set of substructure robust control problems by an interface stiffness matrix which appears as a constant gain feedback. Variations of uncertainties in the interface stiffness are treated as a parametric uncertainty. It is shown that multivariable robust control can be applied to generate centralized or decentralized controllers that guarantee performance with respect to uncertainties in the interface stiffness, reduced component modes and external disturbances. The technique is particularly suited for large, complex, and weakly coupled flexible structures.

  10. A Computational Framework to Control Verification and Robustness Analysis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Crespo, Luis G.; Kenny, Sean P.; Giesy, Daniel P.

    2010-01-01

    This paper presents a methodology for evaluating the robustness of a controller based on its ability to satisfy the design requirements. The framework proposed is generic since it allows for high-fidelity models, arbitrary control structures and arbitrary functional dependencies between the requirements and the uncertain parameters. The cornerstone of this contribution is the ability to bound the region of the uncertain parameter space where the degradation in closed-loop performance remains acceptable. The size of this bounding set, whose geometry can be prescribed according to deterministic or probabilistic uncertainty models, is a measure of robustness. The robustness metrics proposed herein are the parametric safety margin, the reliability index, the failure probability and upper bounds to this probability. The performance observed at the control verification setting, where the assumptions and approximations used for control design may no longer hold, will fully determine the proposed control assessment.

  11. Case management vocational rehabilitation for women with breast cancer after surgery: a feasibility study incorporating a pilot randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background There is a paucity of methodologically robust vocational rehabilitation (VR) intervention trials. This study assessed the feasibility and acceptability of a VR trial of women with breast cancer to inform the development of a larger interventional study. Methods Women were recruited in Scotland and randomised to either a case management VR service or to usual care. Data were collected on eligibility, recruitment and attrition rates to assess trial feasibility, and interviews conducted to determine trial acceptability. Sick leave days (primary outcome) were self-reported via postal questionnaire every 4 weeks during the first 6 months post-surgery and at 12 months. Secondary outcome measures were change in employment pattern, quality of life and fatigue. Results Of the 1,114 women assessed for eligibility, 163 (15%) were eligible. The main reason for ineligibility was age (>65 years, n = 637, 67%). Of those eligible, 111 (68%) received study information, of which 23 (21%) consented to participate in the study. Data for 18 (78%) women were analysed (intervention: n = 7; control: n = 11). Participants in the intervention group reported, on average, 53 fewer days of sick leave over the first 6 months post-surgery than those in the control group; however, this difference was not statistically significant (p = 0.122; 95% confidence interval −15.8, 122.0). No statistically significant differences were found for secondary outcomes. Interviews with trial participants indicated that trial procedures, including recruitment, randomisation and research instruments, were acceptable. Conclusions Conducting a pragmatic trial of effectiveness of a VR intervention among cancer survivors is both feasible and acceptable, but more research about the exact components of a VR intervention and choice of outcomes to measure effectiveness is required. VR to assist breast cancer patients in the return to work process is an important component of cancer survivorship plans. Trial

  12. Gut-directed hypnotherapy for irritable bowel syndrome: piloting a primary care-based randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Roberts, Lesley; Wilson, Sue; Singh, Sukhdev; Roalfe, Andrea; Greenfield, Sheila

    2006-01-01

    Background In western populations irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) affects between 10% and 30% of the population and has a significant effect on quality of life. It generates a substantial workload in both primary and secondary care and has significant cost implications. Gut-directed hypnotherapy has been demonstrated to alleviate symptoms and improve quality of life but has not been assessed outside of secondary and tertiary referral centres. Aim To assess the effectiveness of gut-directed hypnotherapy as a complementary therapy in the management of IBS. Design of study Randomised controlled trial. Setting Primary care patients aged 18–65 years inclusive, with a diagnosis of IBS of greater than 6 weeks' duration and having failed conventional management, located in South Staffordshire and North Birmingham, UK. Method Intervention patients received five sessions of hypnotherapy in addition to their usual management. Control patients received usual management alone. Data regarding symptoms and quality of life were collected at baseline and again 3, 6, and 12 months post-randomisation. Results Both groups demonstrated a significant improvement in all symptom dimensions and quality of life over 12 months. At 3 months the intervention group had significantly greater improvements in pain, diarrhoea and overall symptom scores (P<0.05). No significant differences between groups in quality of life were identified. No differences were maintained over time. Intervention patients, however, were significantly less likely to require medication, and the majority described an improvement in their condition. Conclusions Gut-directed hypnotherapy benefits patients via symptom reduction and reduced medication usage, although the lack of significant difference between groups beyond 3 months prohibits its general introduction without additional evidence. A large trial incorporating robust economic analysis is, therefore, urgently recommended. PMID:16464325

  13. Social Dancing and Incidence of Falls in Older Adults: A Cluster Randomised Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    Merom, Dafna; Mathieu, Erin; Cerin, Ester; Morton, Rachael L.; Simpson, Judy M.; Anstey, Kaarin J.; Sherrington, Catherine; Lord, Stephen R.; Cumming, Robert G.

    2016-01-01

    Background The prevention of falls among older people is a major public health challenge. Exercises that challenge balance are recognized as an efficacious fall prevention strategy. Given that small-scale trials have indicated that diverse dance styles can improve balance and gait of older adults, two of the strongest risk factors for falls in older people, this study aimed to determine whether social dance is effective in i) reducing the number of falls and ii) improving physical and cognitive fall-related risk factors. Methods and Findings A parallel two-arm cluster randomized controlled trial was undertaken in 23 self-care retirement villages (clusters) around Sydney, Australia. Eligible villages had to have an appropriate hall for dancing, house at least 60 residents, and not be currently offering dance as a village activity. Retirement villages were randomised using a computer generated randomisation method, constrained using minimisation. Eligible participants had to be a resident of the village, be able to walk at least 50 m, and agree to undergo physical and cognitive testing without cognitive impairment. Residents of intervention villages (12 clusters) were offered twice weekly one-hour social dancing classes (folk or ballroom dancing) over 12 mo (80 h in total). Programs were standardized across villages and were delivered by eight dance teachers. Participants in the control villages (11 clusters) were advised to continue with their regular activities. Main outcomes: falls during the 12 mo trial and Trail Making Tests. Secondary outcomes: The Physiological Performance Assessment (i.e., postural sway, proprioception, reaction time, leg strength) and the Short Physical Performance Battery; health-related physical and mental quality of life from the Short-Form 12 (SF-12) Survey. Data on falls were obtained from 522 of 530 (98%) randomised participants (mean age 78 y, 85% women) and 424 (80%) attended the 12-mo reassessment, which was lower among folk dance

  14. Robust adaptive control of MEMS triaxial gyroscope using fuzzy compensator.

    PubMed

    Fei, Juntao; Zhou, Jian

    2012-12-01

    In this paper, a robust adaptive control strategy using a fuzzy compensator for MEMS triaxial gyroscope, which has system nonlinearities, including model uncertainties and external disturbances, is proposed. A fuzzy logic controller that could compensate for the model uncertainties and external disturbances is incorporated into the adaptive control scheme in the Lyapunov framework. The proposed adaptive fuzzy controller can guarantee the convergence and asymptotical stability of the closed-loop system. The proposed adaptive fuzzy control strategy does not depend on accurate mathematical models, which simplifies the design procedure. The innovative development of intelligent control methods incorporated with conventional control for the MEMS gyroscope is derived with the strict theoretical proof of the Lyapunov stability. Numerical simulations are investigated to verify the effectiveness of the proposed adaptive fuzzy control scheme and demonstrate the satisfactory tracking performance and robustness against model uncertainties and external disturbances compared with conventional adaptive control method.

  15. A randomised controlled trial linking mental health inpatients to community smoking cessation supports: A study protocol

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Mental health inpatients smoke at higher rates than the general population and are disproportionately affected by tobacco dependence. Despite the advent of smoke free policies within mental health hospitals, limited systems are in place to support a cessation attempt post hospitalisation, and international evidence suggests that most smokers return to pre-admission smoking levels following discharge. This protocol describes a randomised controlled trial that will test the feasibility, acceptability and efficacy of linking inpatient smoking care with ongoing community cessation support for smokers with a mental illness. Methods/Design This study will be conducted as a randomised controlled trial. 200 smokers with an acute mental illness will be recruited from a large inpatient mental health facility. Participants will complete a baseline survey and will be randomised to either a multimodal smoking cessation intervention or provided with hospital smoking care only. Randomisation will be stratified by diagnosis (psychotic, non-psychotic). Intervention participants will be provided with a brief motivational interview in the inpatient setting and options of ongoing smoking cessation support post discharge: nicotine replacement therapy (NRT); referral to Quitline; smoking cessation groups; and fortnightly telephone support. Outcome data, including cigarettes smoked per day, quit attempts, and self-reported 7-day point prevalence abstinence (validated by exhaled carbon monoxide), will be collected via blind interview at one week, two months, four months and six months post discharge. Process information will also be collected, including the use of cessation supports and cost of the intervention. Discussion This study will provide comprehensive data on the potential of an integrated, multimodal smoking cessation intervention for persons with an acute mental illness, linking inpatient with community cessation support. Trial Registration Australian and New Zealand

  16. Corticosteroids in acute traumatic brain injury: systematic review of randomised controlled trials.

    PubMed Central

    Alderson, P.; Roberts, I.

    1997-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To quantify the effectiveness and safety of corticosteroids in the treatment of acute traumatic brain injury. DESIGN: Systematic review of randomised controlled trials of corticosteroids in acute traumatic brain injury. Summary odds ratios were estimated as an inverse variance weighted average of the odds ratios for each study. SETTING: Randomised trials available by March 1996. SUBJECTS: The included trials with outcome data comprised 2073 randomised participants. RESULTS: The effect of corticosteroids on the risk of death was reported in 13 included trials. The pooled odds ratio for the 13 trials was 0.91 (95% confidence interval 0.74 to 1.12). Pooled absolute risk reduction was 1.8% (-2.5% to 5.7%). For the 10 trials that reported death or disability the pooled odds ratio was 0.90 (0.72 to 1.11). For infections of any type the pooled odds ratio was 0.92 (0.69 to 1.23) and for the seven trials reporting gastrointestinal bleeding it was 1.05 (0.44 to 2.52). With only those trials with the best quality of concealment of allocation, the pooled odds ratio estimates for death and death or disability became closer to unity. CONCLUSIONS: This systematic review of randomised controlled trials of corticosteroids in acute traumatic brain injury shows that there remains considerable uncertainty over their effects. Neither moderate benefits nor moderate harmful effects can be excluded. The widely practicable nature of the drugs and the importance of the health problem suggest that large simple trials are feasible and worth while to establish whether there are any benefits from use of corticosteroids in this setting. PMID:9224126

  17. Inositol for the prevention of neural tube defects: a pilot randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Greene, Nicholas D E; Leung, Kit-Yi; Gay, Victoria; Burren, Katie; Mills, Kevin; Chitty, Lyn S; Copp, Andrew J

    2016-03-28

    Although peri-conceptional folic acid (FA) supplementation can prevent a proportion of neural tube defects (NTD), there is increasing evidence that many NTD are FA non-responsive. The vitamin-like molecule inositol may offer a novel approach to preventing FA-non-responsive NTD. Inositol prevented NTD in a genetic mouse model, and was well tolerated by women in a small study of NTD recurrence. In the present study, we report the Prevention of Neural Tube Defects by Inositol (PONTI) pilot study designed to gain further experience of inositol usage in human pregnancy as a preliminary trial to a future large-scale controlled trial to evaluate efficacy of inositol in NTD prevention. Study subjects were UK women with a previous NTD pregnancy who planned to become pregnant again. Of 117 women who made contact, ninety-nine proved eligible and forty-seven agreed to be randomised (double-blind) to peri-conceptional supplementation with inositol plus FA or placebo plus FA. In total, thirty-three randomised pregnancies produced one NTD recurrence in the placebo plus FA group (n 19) and no recurrences in the inositol plus FA group (n 14). Of fifty-two women who declined randomisation, the peri-conceptional supplementation regimen and outcomes of twenty-two further pregnancies were documented. Two NTD recurred, both in women who took only FA in their next pregnancy. No adverse pregnancy events were associated with inositol supplementation. The findings of the PONTI pilot study encourage a large-scale controlled trial of inositol for NTD prevention, but indicate the need for a careful study design in view of the unwillingness of many high-risk women to be randomised.

  18. Robust time and frequency domain estimation methods in adaptive control

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lamaire, Richard Orville

    1987-01-01

    A robust identification method was developed for use in an adaptive control system. The type of estimator is called the robust estimator, since it is robust to the effects of both unmodeled dynamics and an unmeasurable disturbance. The development of the robust estimator was motivated by a need to provide guarantees in the identification part of an adaptive controller. To enable the design of a robust control system, a nominal model as well as a frequency-domain bounding function on the modeling uncertainty associated with this nominal model must be provided. Two estimation methods are presented for finding parameter estimates, and, hence, a nominal model. One of these methods is based on the well developed field of time-domain parameter estimation. In a second method of finding parameter estimates, a type of weighted least-squares fitting to a frequency-domain estimated model is used. The frequency-domain estimator is shown to perform better, in general, than the time-domain parameter estimator. In addition, a methodology for finding a frequency-domain bounding function on the disturbance is used to compute a frequency-domain bounding function on the additive modeling error due to the effects of the disturbance and the use of finite-length data. The performance of the robust estimator in both open-loop and closed-loop situations is examined through the use of simulations.

  19. Robust adaptive tracking control for nonholonomic mobile manipulator with uncertainties.

    PubMed

    Peng, Jinzhu; Yu, Jie; Wang, Jie

    2014-07-01

    In this paper, mobile manipulator is divided into two subsystems, that is, nonholonomic mobile platform subsystem and holonomic manipulator subsystem. First, the kinematic controller of the mobile platform is derived to obtain a desired velocity. Second, regarding the coupling between the two subsystems as disturbances, Lyapunov functions of the two subsystems are designed respectively. Third, a robust adaptive tracking controller is proposed to deal with the unknown upper bounds of parameter uncertainties and disturbances. According to the Lyapunov stability theory, the derived robust adaptive controller guarantees global stability of the closed-loop system, and the tracking errors and adaptive coefficient errors are all bounded. Finally, simulation results show that the proposed robust adaptive tracking controller for nonholonomic mobile manipulator is effective and has good tracking capacity. PMID:24917071

  20. Robust levitation control for maglev systems with guaranteed bounded airgap.

    PubMed

    Xu, Jinquan; Chen, Ye-Hwa; Guo, Hong

    2015-11-01

    The robust control design problem for the levitation control of a nonlinear uncertain maglev system is considered. The uncertainty is (possibly) fast time-varying. The system has magnitude limitation on the airgap between the suspended chassis and the guideway in order to prevent undesirable contact. Furthermore, the (global) matching condition is not satisfied. After a three-step state transformation, a robust control scheme for the maglev vehicle is proposed, which is able to guarantee the uniform boundedness and uniform ultimate boundedness of the system, regardless of the uncertainty. The magnitude limitation of the airgap is guaranteed, regardless of the uncertainty. PMID:26524957

  1. Robust vibration control of flexible linkage mechanisms using piezoelectric films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liao, Wen-Hwei; Chou, Jyh-Horng; Horng, Ing-Rong

    1997-08-01

    Based on the state space model of the flexible linkage mechanism equipped with piezoelectric films, a robust control methodology for suppressing elastodynamic responses of the high-speed flexible linkage mechanism with linear time-varying parameter perturbations by employing an observer-based feedback controller is presented. The instability caused by the linear time-varying parameter perturbations and the instability caused by the combined effect of control and observation spillover are investigated and carefully prevented by two robust stability criteria proposed in this paper. Numerical simulation of a slider - crank mechanism example is performed to evaluate the improvement of the elastodynamic responses.

  2. The Diabetes Care Project: an Australian multicentre, cluster randomised controlled trial [study protocol

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Diabetes mellitus is an increasingly prevalent metabolic disorder that is associated with substantial disease burden. Australia has an opportunity to improve ways of caring for the growing number of people with diabetes, but this may require changes to the way care is funded, organised and delivered. To inform how best to care for people with diabetes, and to identify the extent of change that is required to achieve this, the Diabetes Care Project (DCP) will evaluate the impact of two different, evidence-based models of care (compared to usual care) on clinical quality, patient and provider experience, and cost. Methods/Design The DCP uses a pragmatic, cluster randomised controlled trial design. Accredited general practices that are situated within any of the seven Australian Medicare Locals/Divisions of General Practice that have agreed to take part in the study were invited to participate. Consenting practices will be randomly assigned to one of three treatment groups for approximately 18 to 22 months: (a) control group (usual care); (b) Intervention 1 (which tests improvements that could be made within the current funding model, facilitated through the use of an online chronic disease management network); or (c) Intervention 2 (which includes the same components as Intervention 1, as well as altered funding to support voluntary patient registration with their practice, incentive payments and a care facilitator). Adult patients who attend the enrolled practices and have established (≥12 month’s duration) type 1 diabetes mellitus or newly diagnosed or established type 2 diabetes mellitus are invited to participate. Multiple outcomes will be studied, including changes in glycosylated haemoglobin (primary outcome), changes in other biochemical and clinical metrics, incidence of diabetes-related complications, quality of life, clinical depression, success of tailored care, patient and practitioner satisfaction, and budget sustainability. Discussion

  3. Robust high-performance control for robotic manipulators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Seraji, H.

    1989-01-01

    A robust control scheme to accomplish accurate trajectory tracking for an integrated system of manipulator-plus-actuators is proposed. The control scheme comprises a feedforward and a feedback controller. The feedforward controller contains any known part of the manipulator dynamics that can be used for online control. The feedback controller consists of adaptive position and velocity feedback gains and an auxiliary signal which is simply generated by a fixed-gain proportional/integral/derivative controller. The feedback controller is updated by very simple adaptation laws which contain both proportional and integral adaptation terms. By introduction of a simple sigma modification to the adaptation laws, robustness is guaranteed in the presence of unmodeled dynamics and disturbances.

  4. Robust Control Design for Uncertain Nonlinear Dynamic Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kenny, Sean P.; Crespo, Luis G.; Andrews, Lindsey; Giesy, Daniel P.

    2012-01-01

    Robustness to parametric uncertainty is fundamental to successful control system design and as such it has been at the core of many design methods developed over the decades. Despite its prominence, most of the work on robust control design has focused on linear models and uncertainties that are non-probabilistic in nature. Recently, researchers have acknowledged this disparity and have been developing theory to address a broader class of uncertainties. This paper presents an experimental application of robust control design for a hybrid class of probabilistic and non-probabilistic parametric uncertainties. The experimental apparatus is based upon the classic inverted pendulum on a cart. The physical uncertainty is realized by a known additional lumped mass at an unknown location on the pendulum. This unknown location has the effect of substantially altering the nominal frequency and controllability of the nonlinear system, and in the limit has the capability to make the system neutrally stable and uncontrollable. Another uncertainty to be considered is a direct current motor parameter. The control design objective is to design a controller that satisfies stability, tracking error, control power, and transient behavior requirements for the largest range of parametric uncertainties. This paper presents an overview of the theory behind the robust control design methodology and the experimental results.

  5. A self-management programme for COPD: a randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Mitchell, Katy E; Johnson-Warrington, Vicki; Apps, Lindsay D; Bankart, John; Sewell, Louise; Williams, Johanna E; Rees, Karen; Jolly, Kate; Steiner, Michael; Morgan, Mike; Singh, Sally J

    2014-12-01

    Studies of programmes of self-management support for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) have been inconclusive. The Self-Management Programme of Activity, Coping and Education (SPACE) FOR COPD is a 6-week self-management intervention for COPD, and this study aimed to evaluate the effectiveness of this intervention in primary care. A single-blind randomised controlled trial recruited people with COPD from primary care and randomised participants to receive usual care or SPACE FOR COPD. Outcome measures were performed at baseline, 6 weeks and 6 months. The primary outcome was symptom burden, measured by the self-reported Chronic Respiratory Questionnaire (CRQ-SR) dyspnoea domain. Secondary outcomes included other domains of the CRQ-SR, shuttle walking tests, disease knowledge, anxiety, depression, self-efficacy, smoking status and healthcare utilisation. 184 people with COPD were recruited and randomised. At 6 weeks, there were significant differences between groups in CRQ-SR dyspnoea, fatigue and emotion scores, exercise performance, anxiety, and disease knowledge. At 6 months, there was no between-group difference in change in CRQ-SR dyspnoea. Exercise performance, anxiety and smoking status were significantly different between groups at 6 months, in favour of the intervention. This brief self-management intervention did not improve dyspnoea over and above usual care at 6 months; however, there were gains in anxiety, exercise performance, and disease knowledge. PMID:25186259

  6. The CRASH trial: the first large-scale, randomised, controlled trial in head injury

    PubMed Central

    Roberts, Ian

    2001-01-01

    The global epidemic of head injuries is just beginning. Many are caused by road traffic crashes. It is estimated that, by 2020, road traffic crashes will have moved from its present position of ninth to third in the world disease burden ranking, as measured in disability adjusted life years. In developing countries, it will have moved to second. The Corticosteroid Randomisation After Significant Head Injury (CRASH) trial is a large-scale, randomised, controlled trial, among adults with head injury and impaired consciousness, of the effects of a short-term infusion of corticosteroids on death and on neurological disability. Following a successful pilot phase, which included over 1000 randomised participants, the main phase of the trial is now underway. Over the next 5 years, the trial aims to recruit a total of 20,000 patients. Such large numbers will only be possible if hundreds of doctors and nurses can collaborate in emergency departments all over the world. The trial is currently recruiting, and new collaborators are welcome to join the trial (see ). PMID:11737908

  7. Dry needling and exercise for chronic whiplash - a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    Background Chronic whiplash is a common and costly problem. Sensory hypersensitivity is a feature of chronic whiplash that is associated with poor responsiveness to physical treatments such as exercise. Modalities such as dry-needling have shown some capacity to modulate sensory hypersensitivity, suggesting that when combined with advice and exercise, such an approach may be more effective in the management of chronic whiplash. The primary aim of this project is to investigate the effectiveness of dry-needling, advice and exercise for chronic whiplash. Method/Design A double-blind randomised controlled trial will be conducted. 120 participants with chronic whiplash, grade II will be randomised to receive either 1) dry-needling, advice and exercise or 2) sham dry-needling, advice and exercise. All participants will receive an educational booklet on whiplash. Participants who are randomised to Group 1 will receive 6 treatments of combined dry-needling and exercise delivered in the first 3 weeks of the 6 week program, and 4 treatments of exercise only in the last 3 weeks of the program. Participants randomised to Group 2 will receive an identical protocol, except that a sham dry-needling technique will be used instead of dry-needling. The primary outcome measures are the Neck Disability Index (NDI) and participants' perceived recovery. Outcomes will be measured at 6, 12, 24 and 52 weeks after randomization by an assessor who is blind to the group allocation of the participants. In parallel, an economic analysis will be conducted. Discussion This trial will utilise high quality trial methodologies in accordance with CONSORT guidelines. The successful completion of this trial will provide evidence of the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of a combined treatment approach for the management of chronic whiplash. Trial registration ACTRN12609000470291 PMID:20021675

  8. Study protocol for a randomised controlled trial of invasive versus conservative management of primary spontaneous pneumothorax

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Simon G A; Ball, Emma L; Perrin, Kyle; Read, Catherine A; Asha, Stephen E; Beasley, Richard; Egerton-Warburton, Diana; Jones, Peter G; Keijzers, Gerben; Kinnear, Frances B; Kwan, Ben C H; Lee, Y C Gary; Smith, Julian A; Summers, Quentin A; Simpson, Graham

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Current management of primary spontaneous pneumothorax (PSP) is variable, with little evidence from randomised controlled trials to guide treatment. Guidelines emphasise intervention in many patients, which involves chest drain insertion, hospital admission and occasionally surgery. However, there is evidence that conservative management may be effective and safe, and it may also reduce the risk of recurrence. Significant questions remain regarding the optimal initial approach to the management of PSP. Methods and analysis This multicentre, prospective, randomised, open label, parallel group, non-inferiority study will randomise 342 participants with a first large PSP to conservative or interventional management. To maintain allocation concealment, randomisation will be performed in real time by computer and stratified by study site. Conservative management will involve a period of observation prior to discharge, with intervention for worsening symptoms or physiological instability. Interventional treatment will involve insertion of a small bore drain. If drainage continues after 1 hour, the patient will be admitted. If drainage stops, the drain will be clamped for 4 hours. The patient will be discharged if the lung remains inflated. Otherwise, the patient will be admitted. The primary end point is the proportion of participants with complete lung re-expansion by 8 weeks. Secondary end points are as follows: days in hospital, persistent air leak, predefined complications and adverse events, time to resolution of symptoms, and pneumothorax recurrence during a follow-up period of at least 1 year. The study has 95% power to detect an absolute non-inferiority margin of 9%, assuming 99% successful expansion at 8 weeks in the invasive treatment arm. The primary analysis will be by intention to treat. Ethics and dissemination Local ethics approval has been obtained for all sites. Study findings will be disseminated by publication in a high

  9. Optimal Robust Motion Controller Design Using Multiobjective Genetic Algorithm

    PubMed Central

    Svečko, Rajko

    2014-01-01

    This paper describes the use of a multiobjective genetic algorithm for robust motion controller design. Motion controller structure is based on a disturbance observer in an RIC framework. The RIC approach is presented in the form with internal and external feedback loops, in which an internal disturbance rejection controller and an external performance controller must be synthesised. This paper involves novel objectives for robustness and performance assessments for such an approach. Objective functions for the robustness property of RIC are based on simple even polynomials with nonnegativity conditions. Regional pole placement method is presented with the aims of controllers' structures simplification and their additional arbitrary selection. Regional pole placement involves arbitrary selection of central polynomials for both loops, with additional admissible region of the optimized pole location. Polynomial deviation between selected and optimized polynomials is measured with derived performance objective functions. A multiobjective function is composed of different unrelated criteria such as robust stability, controllers' stability, and time-performance indexes of closed loops. The design of controllers and multiobjective optimization procedure involve a set of the objectives, which are optimized simultaneously with a genetic algorithm—differential evolution. PMID:24987749

  10. Optimal robust motion controller design using multiobjective genetic algorithm.

    PubMed

    Sarjaš, Andrej; Svečko, Rajko; Chowdhury, Amor

    2014-01-01

    This paper describes the use of a multiobjective genetic algorithm for robust motion controller design. Motion controller structure is based on a disturbance observer in an RIC framework. The RIC approach is presented in the form with internal and external feedback loops, in which an internal disturbance rejection controller and an external performance controller must be synthesised. This paper involves novel objectives for robustness and performance assessments for such an approach. Objective functions for the robustness property of RIC are based on simple even polynomials with nonnegativity conditions. Regional pole placement method is presented with the aims of controllers' structures simplification and their additional arbitrary selection. Regional pole placement involves arbitrary selection of central polynomials for both loops, with additional admissible region of the optimized pole location. Polynomial deviation between selected and optimized polynomials is measured with derived performance objective functions. A multiobjective function is composed of different unrelated criteria such as robust stability, controllers' stability, and time-performance indexes of closed loops. The design of controllers and multiobjective optimization procedure involve a set of the objectives, which are optimized simultaneously with a genetic algorithm-differential evolution. PMID:24987749

  11. Robust controllers for the Middeck Active Control Experiment using Popov controller synthesis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    How, Jonathan P.; Hall, Steven R.

    1993-01-01

    Recent work in robust control with real parameter uncertainties has focused on absolute stability and its connections to real mu theory. In particular, the research has investigated the Popov stability criterion and its associated Lur'e-Postnikov Liapunov functions. State space representations of this Popov stability analysis tests are included in an H2 design formulation to provide a powerful technique for robust controller synthesis. This synthesis approach uses a state space optimization procedure to design controllers that minimize an overbound of an H2 cost functional and satisfy stability analysis tests based on the Popov multiplier. The controller and stability multiplier coefficients are optimized simultaneously, which avoids the iteration and curve-fitting procedures required by the D-K algorithm of mu synthesis. While previous work has demonstrated this synthesis approach on benchmark control problems, the purpose of this paper is to use Popov controller synthesis to design robust compensators for the Middeck Active Control Experiment (MACE).

  12. Robust hopping based on virtual pendulum posture control.

    PubMed

    Sharbafi, Maziar A; Maufroy, Christophe; Ahmadabadi, Majid Nili; Yazdanpanah, Mohammad J; Seyfarth, Andre

    2013-09-01

    A new control approach to achieve robust hopping against perturbations in the sagittal plane is presented in this paper. In perturbed hopping, vertical body alignment has a significant role for stability. Our approach is based on the virtual pendulum concept, recently proposed, based on experimental findings in human and animal locomotion. In this concept, the ground reaction forces are pointed to a virtual support point, named virtual pivot point (VPP), during motion. This concept is employed in designing the controller to balance the trunk during the stance phase. New strategies for leg angle and length adjustment besides the virtual pendulum posture control are proposed as a unified controller. This method is investigated by applying it on an extension of the spring loaded inverted pendulum (SLIP) model. Trunk, leg mass and damping are added to the SLIP model in order to make the model more realistic. The stability is analyzed by Poincaré map analysis. With fixed VPP position, stability, disturbance rejection and moderate robustness are achieved, but with a low convergence speed. To improve the performance and attain higher robustness, an event-based control of the VPP position is introduced, using feedback of the system states at apexes. Discrete linear quartic regulator is used to design the feedback controller. Considerable enhancements with respect to stability, convergence speed and robustness against perturbations and parameter changes are achieved.

  13. Analysis the robustness of control systems based on disturbance observer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sariyildiz, Emre; Ohnishi, Kouhei

    2013-10-01

    Disturbance observer (DOB) estimates the system disturbances by using the inverse of the nominal plant model and a low pass filter (LPF). Although the LPF provides the properness in the inner-loop, it is the main design constraint of the control systems based on DOB. The bandwidth of the LPF is designed as high as possible so that the DOB can estimate the disturbances in a wider frequency range. However, its bandwidth is limited by noise and robustness of the system. The robustness limitation is directly related with the robustness analysis methods, and they significantly affect the performance of the DOB based control systems. In this paper, three different robustness analysis methods are implemented into the DOB based control systems, and the relation between the robustness of the system and bandwidth of DOB is clearly explained. The conservatism, which is the main drawback of the conventional analysis methods, on the bandwidth of DOB is removed by proposing a new real parametric uncertainty based analysis method. The proposed methods are compared in detail, and simulation results are given to show the validation.

  14. Brief reminiscence activities improve state well-being and self-concept in young adults: a randomised controlled experiment.

    PubMed

    Hallford, David John; Mellor, David

    2016-11-01

    Reminiscence-based psychotherapies have been demonstrated to have robust effects on a range of therapeutic outcomes. However, little research has been conducted on the immediate effects of guided activities they are composed of, or how these might differ dependent on the type of reminiscence. The current study utilised a controlled experimental design, whereby 321 young adults (mean age = 25.5 years, SD = 3.0) were randomised to one of four conditions of online reminiscence activity: problem-solving (successful coping experiences), identity (self-defining events contributing to a meaningful and continuous personal identity), bitterness revival (negative or adverse events), or a control condition (any memory from their past). Participants recalled autobiographical memories congruent with the condition, and answered questions to facilitate reflection on the memories. The results indicated that problem-solving and identity reminiscence activities caused significant improvements in self-esteem, meaning in life, self-efficacy and affect, whereas no effects were found in the bitterness revival and control conditions. Problem-solving reminiscence also caused a small effect in increasing perceptions of a life narrative/s. Differences between the conditions did not appear to be explained by the positive-valence of memories. These results provide evidence for the specific effects of adaptive types of problem-solving and identity reminiscence in young adults.

  15. Robust Control of Non-Passive Systems via Passification

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kelkar, A. G.; Joshi, S. M.

    1997-01-01

    This paper presents methods which enable the use of passivity-based control design techniques to control non-passive systems. For inherently non-passive finite- dimensional linear time-invaraint systems, passification methods are presented to render such systems passive by suitable compensation. The passified system can then be controlled by a class of passive linear controllers. The idea is to exploit the robust stability properties of passivity-based control laws for uncertain systems. The proposed passification methods are demonstrated by application to the ACC benchmark problem and to pitch-axis control of an F-18 High Alpha Research Vehicle (HARV) model.

  16. Robust control systems design by H-infinity optimization theory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chang, B. C.; Li, X. P.; Banda, S. S.; Yeh, H. H.

    1991-01-01

    In this paper, step-by-step procedures of applying the H-infinity theory to robust control systems design are given. The objective of the paper is to eliminate the possible difficulties a control engineer may encounter in applying H-infinity control theory and to clear up some misconceptions about H-infinity theory like high-gain controller and numerical obstacles, etc. An efficient algorithm is used to compute the optimal H-infinity norm. The Glover and Doyle (1988) controller formulas are slightly modified and used to construct an optimal controller without any numerical difficulties.

  17. Robust Optimal Adaptive Control Method with Large Adaptive Gain

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nguyen, Nhan T.

    2009-01-01

    In the presence of large uncertainties, a control system needs to be able to adapt rapidly to regain performance. Fast adaptation is referred to the implementation of adaptive control with a large adaptive gain to reduce the tracking error rapidly. However, a large adaptive gain can lead to high-frequency oscillations which can adversely affect robustness of an adaptive control law. A new adaptive control modification is presented that can achieve robust adaptation with a large adaptive gain without incurring high-frequency oscillations as with the standard model-reference adaptive control. The modification is based on the minimization of the Y2 norm of the tracking error, which is formulated as an optimal control problem. The optimality condition is used to derive the modification using the gradient method. The optimal control modification results in a stable adaptation and allows a large adaptive gain to be used for better tracking while providing sufficient stability robustness. Simulations were conducted for a damaged generic transport aircraft with both standard adaptive control and the adaptive optimal control modification technique. The results demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed modification in tracking a reference model while maintaining a sufficient time delay margin.

  18. Ultrasound in management of rheumatoid arthritis: ARCTIC randomised controlled strategy trial

    PubMed Central

    Aga, Anna-Birgitte; Olsen, Inge Christoffer; Lillegraven, Siri; Hammer, Hilde B; Uhlig, Till; Fremstad, Hallvard; Madland, Tor Magne; Lexberg, Åse Stavland; Haukeland, Hilde; Rødevand, Erik; Høili, Christian; Stray, Hilde; Noraas, Anne; Hansen, Inger Johanne Widding; Bakland, Gunnstein; Nordberg, Lena Bugge; van der Heijde, Désirée; Kvien, Tore K

    2016-01-01

    Objective To determine whether a treatment strategy based on structured ultrasound assessment would lead to improved outcomes in rheumatoid arthritis, compared with a conventional strategy. Design Multicentre, open label, two arm, parallel group, randomised controlled strategy trial. Setting Ten rheumatology departments and one specialist centre in Norway, from September 2010 to September 2015. Participants 238 patients were recruited between September 2010 and April 2013, of which 230 (141 (61%) female) received the allocated intervention and were analysed for the primary outcome. The main inclusion criteria were age 18-75 years, fulfilment of the 2010 American College of Rheumatology/European League Against Rheumatism classification criteria for rheumatoid arthritis, disease modifying anti-rheumatic drug naivety with indication for disease modifying drug therapy, and time from first patient reported swollen joint less than two years. Patients with abnormal kidney or liver function or major comorbidities were excluded. Interventions 122 patients were randomised to an ultrasound tight control strategy targeting clinical and imaging remission, and 116 patients were randomised to a conventional tight control strategy targeting clinical remission. Patients in both arms were treated according to the same disease modifying anti-rheumatic drug escalation strategy, with 13 visits over two years. Main outcome measures The primary endpoint was the proportion of patients with a combination between 16 and 24 months of clinical remission, no swollen joints, and non-progression of radiographic joint damage. Secondary outcomes included measures of disease activity, radiographic progression, functioning, quality of life, and adverse events. All participants who attended at least one follow-up visit were included in the full analysis set. Results 26 (22%) of the 118 analysed patients in the ultrasound tight control arm and 21 (19%) of the 112 analysed patients in the

  19. A new robust control for minirotorcraft unmanned aerial vehicles.

    PubMed

    Mokhtari, M Rida; Cherki, Brahim

    2015-05-01

    This paper presents a new robust control based on finite-time Lyapunov stability controller and proved with backstepping method for the position and the attitude of a small rotorcraft unmanned aerial vehicle subjected to bounded uncertainties and disturbances. The dynamical motion equations are obtained by the Newton-Euler formalism. The proposed controller combines the advantage of the backstepping approach with finite-time convergence techniques to generate a control laws to guarantee the faster convergence of the state variables to their desired values in short time and compensate for the bounded disturbances. A formal proof of the closed-loop stability and finite-time convergence of tracking errors is derived using the Lyapunov function technique. Simulation results are presented to corroborate the effectiveness and the robustness of the proposed control method.

  20. Study protocol for a randomised controlled trial of electronic cigarettes versus nicotine patch for smoking cessation

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes or electronic nicotine delivery systems [ENDS]) are electrically powered devices generally similar in appearance to a cigarette that deliver a propylene glycol and/or glycerol mist to the airway of users when drawing on the mouthpiece. Nicotine and other substances such as flavourings may be included in the fluid vaporised by the device. People report using e-cigarettes to help quit smoking and studies of their effects on tobacco withdrawal and craving suggest good potential as smoking cessation aids. However, to date there have been no adequately powered randomised trials investigating their cessation efficacy or safety. This paper outlines the protocol for this study. Methods/design Design: Parallel group, 3-arm, randomised controlled trial. Participants: People aged ≥18 years resident in Auckland, New Zealand (NZ) who want to quit smoking. Intervention: Stratified blocked randomisation to allocate participants to either Elusion™ e-cigarettes with nicotine cartridges (16 mg) or with placebo cartridges (i.e. no nicotine), or to nicotine patch (21 mg) alone. Participants randomised to the e-cigarette groups will be told to use them ad libitum for one week before and 12 weeks after quit day, while participants randomised to patches will be told to use them daily for the same period. All participants will be offered behavioural support to quit from the NZ Quitline. Primary outcome: Biochemically verified (exhaled carbon monoxide) continuous abstinence at six months after quit day. Sample size: 657 people (292 in both the nicotine e-cigarette and nicotine patch groups and 73 in the placebo e-cigarettes group) will provide 80% power at p = 0.05 to detect an absolute difference of 10% in abstinence between the nicotine e-cigarette and nicotine patch groups, and 15% between the nicotine and placebo e-cigarette groups. Discussion This trial will inform international debate and policy on the regulation and

  1. Management of type 2 diabetes in China: the Happy Life Club, a pragmatic cluster randomised controlled trial using health coaches

    PubMed Central

    Browning, Colette; Chapman, Anna; Yang, Hui; Liu, Shuo; Zhang, Tuohong; Enticott, Joanne C; Thomas, Shane A

    2016-01-01

    Objective To assess the effectiveness of a coach-led motivational interviewing (MI) intervention in improving glycaemic control, as well as clinical, psychosocial and self-care outcomes of individuals with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) compared with usual care. Design Pragmatic cluster randomised controlled trial (RCT). Setting Community Health Stations (CHSs) in Fengtai district, Beijing, China. Participants Of the 41 randomised CHSs (21 intervention and 20 control), 21 intervention CHSs (372 participants) and 18 control CHSs (296 participants) started participation. Intervention Intervention participants received telephone and face-to-face MI health coaching in addition to usual care from their CHS. Control participants received usual care only. Medical fees were waived for both groups. Outcome measures Outcomes were assessed at baseline, 6 and 12 months. Primary outcome measure was glycated haemoglobin (HbA1c). Secondary outcomes included a suite of anthropometric, blood pressure (BP), fasting blood, psychosocial and self-care measures. Results At 12 months, no differential treatment effect was found for HbA1c (adjusted difference 0.02, 95% CI −0.40 to 0.44, p=0.929), with both treatment and control groups showing significant improvements. However, two secondary outcomes: psychological distress (adjusted difference −2.38, 95% CI −4.64 to −0.12, p=0.039) and systolic BP (adjusted difference −3.57, 95% CI −6.08 to −1.05, p=0.005) were robust outcomes consistent with significant differential treatment effects, as supported in sensitivity analyses. Interestingly, in addition to HbA1c, both groups displayed significant improvements in triglycerides, LDL cholesterol and HDL cholesterol. Conclusions In line with the current Chinese primary healthcare reform, this study is the first large-scale cluster RCT to be implemented within real-world CHSs in China, specifically addressing T2DM. Although a differential treatment effect was not observed for Hb

  2. Greening vacant lots to reduce violent crime: a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Garvin, Eugenia C; Cannuscio, Carolyn C; Branas, Charles C

    2014-01-01

    Background Vacant lots are often overgrown with unwanted vegetation and filled with trash, making them attractive places to hide illegal guns, conduct illegal activities such as drug sales and prostitution, and engage in violent crime. There is some evidence that greening vacant lots is associated with reductions in violent crime. Methods We performed a randomised controlled trial of vacant lot greening to test the impact of this intervention on police reported crime and residents’ perceptions of safety and disorder. Greening consisted of cleaning the lots, planting grass and trees, and building a wooden fence around the perimeter. We randomly allocated two vacant lot clusters to the greening intervention or to the control status (no intervention). Administrative data were used to determine crime rates, and local resident interviews at baseline (n=29) and at follow-up (n=21) were used to assess perceptions of safety and disorder. Results Unadjusted difference-in-differences estimates showed a non-significant decrease in the number of total crimes and gun assaults around greened vacant lots compared with control. People around the intervention vacant lots reported feeling significantly safer after greening compared with those living around control vacant lots (p<0.01). Conclusions In this study, greening was associated with reductions in certain gun crimes and improvements in residents’ perceptions of safety. A larger randomised controlled trial is needed to further investigate the link between vacant lot greening and violence reduction. PMID:22871378

  3. Robust Neural Sliding Mode Control of Robot Manipulators

    SciTech Connect

    Nguyen Tran Hiep; Pham Thuong Cat

    2009-03-05

    This paper proposes a robust neural sliding mode control method for robot tracking problem to overcome the noises and large uncertainties in robot dynamics. The Lyapunov direct method has been used to prove the stability of the overall system. Simulation results are given to illustrate the applicability of the proposed method.

  4. Implementation of RCGP guidelines for acute low back pain: a cluster randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed Central

    Dey, Paola; Simpson, Carl W R; Collins, Stuart I; Hodgson, G; Dowrick, Christopher F; Simison, A J M; Rose, M J

    2004-01-01

    BACKGROUND: The Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) has produced guidelines for the management of acute low back pain in primary care. AIM: To investigate the impact on patient management of an educational strategy to promote these guidelines among general practitioners (GPs). DESIGN OF STUDY: Group randomised controlled trial, using the health centre as the unit of randomisation. SETTING: Primary care teams in north-west England. METHOD: Twenty-four health centres were randomly allocated to an intervention or control arm. Practices in the intervention arm were offered outreach visits to promote national guidelines on acute low back pain, as well as access to fast-track physiotherapy and to a triage service for patients with persistent symptoms. RESULTS: Twenty-four centres were randomised. Two thousand, one hundred and eighty-seven eligible patients presented with acute low back pain during the study period: 1049 in the intervention group and 1138 in the control group. There were no significant differences between study groups in the proportion of patients who were referred for X-ray, issued with a sickness certificate, prescribed opioids or muscle relaxants, or who were referred to secondary care, but significantly more patients in the intervention group were referred to physiotherapy or the back pain unit (difference in proportion = 12.2%, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 2.8% to 21.6%). CONCLUSION: The management of patients presenting with low back pain to primary care was mostly unchanged by an outreach educational strategy to promote greater adherence to RCGP guidelines among GPs. An increase in referral to physiotherapy or educational programmes followed the provision of a triage service. PMID:14965404

  5. The informed consent process in randomised controlled trials: a nurse-led process.

    PubMed

    Cresswell, Pip; Gilmour, Jean

    2014-03-01

    Clinical trials are carried out with human participants to answer questions about the best way to diagnose, treat and prevent illness. Participants must give informed consent to take part in clinical trials that requires understanding of how clinical trials work and their purpose. Randomised controlled trials provide strong evidence but their complex design is difficult for both clinicians and participants to understand. Increasingly, ensuring informed consent in randomised controlled trials has become part of the clinical research nurse role. The aim of this study was to explore in depth the clinical research nurse role in the informed consent process using a qualitative descriptive approach. Three clinical research nurses were interviewed and data analysed using a thematic analysis approach. Three themes were identified to describe the process of ensuring informed consent. The first theme, Preparatory partnerships, canvassed the relationships required prior to initiation of the informed consent process. The second theme, Partnering the participant, emphasises the need for ensuring voluntariness and understanding, along with patient advocacy. The third theme, Partnership with the project, highlights the clinical research nurse contribution to the capacity of the trial to answer the research question through appropriate recruiting and follow up of participants. Gaining informed consent in randomised controlled trials was complex and required multiple partnerships. A wide variety of skills was used to protect the safety of trial participants and promote quality research. The information from this study contributes to a greater understanding of the clinical research nurse role, and suggests the informed consent process in trials can be a nurse-led one. In order to gain collegial, employer and industry recognition it is important this aspect of the nursing role is acknowledged.

  6. Robust stability and control of linear and multilinear interval systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bhattacharyya, S. P.; Keel, L. H.

    1992-01-01

    This paper is a survey of recent results obtained by the authors and their coworkers on the robust stability and control of systems containing parametric uncertainty. The starting point is a generalization of Kharitonov's theorem obtained by Chapellat and Bhattacharyya in 1989. This theorem, called the Linear CB theorem, its generalization to the multilinear case, the singling out of extremal stability subsets, and other ramifications now constitute an extensive and coherent theory of robust parametric stability that is summarized in the results contained here.

  7. Computational methods of robust controller design for aerodynamic flutter suppression

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Anderson, L. R.

    1981-01-01

    The development of Riccati iteration, a tool for the design and analysis of linear control systems is examined. First, Riccati iteration is applied to the problem of pole placement and order reduction in two-time scale control systems. Order reduction, yielding a good approximation to the original system, is demonstrated using a 16th order linear model of a turbofan engine. Next, a numerical method for solving the Riccati equation is presented and demonstrated for a set of eighth order random examples. A literature review of robust controller design methods follows which includes a number of methods for reducing the trajectory and performance index sensitivity in linear regulators. Lastly, robust controller design for large parameter variations is discussed.

  8. Mitigation of Remedial Action Schemes by Decentralized Robust Governor Control

    SciTech Connect

    Elizondo, Marcelo A.; Marinovici, Laurentiu D.; Lian, Jianming; Kalsi, Karanjit; Du, Pengwei

    2014-04-15

    This paper presents transient stability improvement by a new distributed hierarchical control architecture (DHC). The integration of remedial action schemes (RAS) to the distributed hierarchical control architecture is studied. RAS in power systems are designed to maintain stability and avoid undesired system conditions by rapidly switching equipment and/or changing operating points according to predetermined rules. The acceleration trend relay currently in use in the US western interconnection is an example of RAS that trips generators to maintain transient stability. The link between RAS and DHC is through fast acting robust turbine/governor control that can also improve transient stability. In this paper, the influence of the decentralized robust turbine/governor control on the design of RAS is studied. Benefits of combining these two schemes are increasing power transfer capability and mitigation of RAS generator tripping actions; the later benefit is shown through simulations.

  9. Variable Neural Adaptive Robust Control: A Switched System Approach

    SciTech Connect

    Lian, Jianming; Hu, Jianghai; Zak, Stanislaw H.

    2015-05-01

    Variable neural adaptive robust control strategies are proposed for the output tracking control of a class of multi-input multi-output uncertain systems. The controllers incorporate a variable-structure radial basis function (RBF) network as the self-organizing approximator for unknown system dynamics. The variable-structure RBF network solves the problem of structure determination associated with fixed-structure RBF networks. It can determine the network structure on-line dynamically by adding or removing radial basis functions according to the tracking performance. The structure variation is taken into account in the stability analysis of the closed-loop system using a switched system approach with the aid of the piecewise quadratic Lyapunov function. The performance of the proposed variable neural adaptive robust controllers is illustrated with simulations.

  10. Randomised controlled pilot trial of mindfulness training for stress reduction during pregnancy.

    PubMed

    Guardino, Christine M; Dunkel Schetter, Christine; Bower, Julienne E; Lu, Michael C; Smalley, Susan L

    2014-01-01

    This randomised controlled pilot trial tested a six-week mindfulness-based intervention in a sample of pregnant women experiencing high levels of perceived stress and pregnancy anxiety. Forty-seven women enrolled between 10 and 25 weeks gestation were randomly assigned to either a series of weekly Mindful Awareness Practices classes (n = 24) with home practice or to a reading control condition (n = 23). Hierarchical linear models of between-group differences in change over time demonstrated that participants in the mindfulness intervention experienced larger decreases from pre-to post-intervention in pregnancy-specific anxiety and pregnancy-related anxiety (PRA) than participants in the reading control condition. However, these effects were not sustained through follow-up at six weeks post-intervention. Participants in both groups experienced increased mindfulness, as well as decreased perceived stress and state anxiety over the course of the intervention and follow-up periods. This study is one of the first randomised controlled pilot trials of a mindfulness meditation intervention during pregnancy and provides some evidence that mindfulness training during pregnancy may effectively reduce PRA and worry. We discuss some of the dilemmas in pursuing this translational strategy and offer suggestions for researchers interested in conducting mind-body interventions during pregnancy. PMID:24180264

  11. Robust control design techniques for active flutter suppression

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ozbay, Hitay; Bachmann, Glen R.

    1994-01-01

    In this paper, an active flutter suppression problem is studied for a thin airfoil in unsteady aerodynamics. The mathematical model of this system is infinite dimensional because of Theodorsen's function which is irrational. Several second order approximations of Theodorsen's function are compared. A finite dimensional model is obtained from such an approximation. We use H infinity control techniques to find a robustly stabilizing controller for active flutter suppression.

  12. A Robust Cooperated Control Method with Reinforcement Learning and Adaptive H∞ Control

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Obayashi, Masanao; Uchiyama, Shogo; Kuremoto, Takashi; Kobayashi, Kunikazu

    This study proposes a robust cooperated control method combining reinforcement learning with robust control to control the system. A remarkable characteristic of the reinforcement learning is that it doesn't require model formula, however, it doesn't guarantee the stability of the system. On the other hand, robust control system guarantees stability and robustness, however, it requires model formula. We employ both the actor-critic method which is a kind of reinforcement learning with minimal amount of computation to control continuous valued actions and the traditional robust control, that is, H∞ control. The proposed system was compared method with the conventional control method, that is, the actor-critic only used, through the computer simulation of controlling the angle and the position of a crane system, and the simulation result showed the effectiveness of the proposed method.

  13. Efficacy of metformin in pregnant obese women: a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Chiswick, Carolyn A; Reynolds, Rebecca M; Denison, Fiona C; Whyte, Sonia A; Drake, Amanda J; Newby, David E; Walker, Brian R; Forbes, Shareen; Murray, Gordon D; Quenby, Siobhan; Wray, Susan; Norman, Jane E

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Increasing evidence suggests obesity has its origins prior to birth. There is clear correlation between maternal obesity, high birthweight and offspring risk of obesity in later life. It is also clear that women who are obese during pregnancy are at greater risk of adverse outcomes, including gestational diabetes and stillbirth. The mechanism(s) by which obesity causes these problems is unknown, although hyperglycaemia and insulin resistance are strongly implicated. We present a protocol for a study to test the hypothesis that metformin will improve insulin sensitivity in obese pregnant women, thereby reducing the incidence of high birthweight babies and other pregnancy complications. Methods and analysis The Efficacy of Metformin in Pregnant Obese Women, a Randomised controlled (EMPOWaR) trial is a double-masked randomised placebo-controlled trial to determine whether metformin given to obese (body mass index >30 kg/m2) pregnant women from 16 weeks’ gestation until delivery reduces the incidence of high birthweight babies. A secondary aim is to test the mechanism(s) of any effect. Obese women with a singleton pregnancy and normal glucose tolerance will be recruited prior to 16 weeks’ gestation and prescribed study medication, metformin or placebo, to be taken until delivery. Further study visits will occur at 28 and 36 weeks’ gestation for glucose tolerance testing and to record anthropometric measurements. Birth weight and other measurements will be recorded at time of delivery. Anthropometry of mother and baby will be performed at 3 months postdelivery. As of January 2014, 449 women had been randomised across the UK. Ethics and dissemination The study will be conducted in accordance with the principles of Good Clinical Practice. A favourable ethical opinion was obtained from Scotland A Research Ethics Committee, reference number 10/MRE00/12. Results will be disseminated at conferences and published in peer-reviewed journals. Trial

  14. An alternative to a randomised control design for assessing the efficacy and effectiveness of bracing in adolescent idiopathic scoliosis.

    PubMed

    Fong, D Y T; Cheung, K M C; Wong, Y W; Cheung, W Y; Fu, I C Y; Kuong, E E; Mak, K C; To, M; Samartzis, D; Luk, K D K

    2015-07-01

    Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) that assessed the efficacy of bracing for adolescent idiopathic scoliosis have suffered from small sample sizes, low compliance and lack of willingness to participate. The aim of this study was to assess the feasibility of a comprehensive cohort study for evaluating both the efficacy and the effectiveness of bracing in patients with adolescent idiopathic scoliosis. Patients with curves at greater risk of progression were invited to join a randomised controlled trial. Those who declined were given the option to remain in the study and to choose whether they wished to be braced or observed. Of 87 eligible patients (5 boys and 63 girls) identified over one year, 68 (78%) with mean age of 12.5 years (10 to 15) consented to participate, with a mean follow-up of 168 weeks (0 to 290). Of these, 19 (28%) accepted randomisation. Of those who declined randomisation, 18 (37%) chose a brace. Patients who were more satisfied with their image were more likely to choose bracing (Odds Ratio 4.1; 95% confidence interval 1.1 to 15.0; p = 0.035). This comprehensive cohort study design facilitates the assessment of both efficacy and effectiveness of bracing in patients with adolescent idiopathic scoliosis, which is not feasible in a conventional randomised controlled trial.

  15. Physiotherapy Post Lumbar Discectomy: Prospective Feasibility and Pilot Randomised Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    Rushton, Alison; Goodwin, Peter C.

    2015-01-01

    Objectives To evaluate: acceptability and feasibility of trial procedures; distribution of scores on the Roland Morris Disability Questionnaire (RMDQ, planned primary outcome); and efficient working of trial components. Design and Setting A feasibility and external pilot randomised controlled trial (ISRCTN33808269, assigned 10/12/2012) was conducted across 2 UK secondary care outpatient physiotherapy departments associated with regional spinal surgery centres. Participants Consecutive consenting patients aged >18 years; post primary, single level, lumbar discectomy. Interventions Participants were randomised to either 1:1 physiotherapy outpatient management including patient leaflet, or patient leaflet alone. Main Outcome Measures Blinded assessments were made at 4 weeks post surgery (baseline) and 12 weeks post baseline (proposed primary end point). Secondary outcomes included: Global Perceived Effect, back/leg pain, straight leg raise, return to work/function, quality of life, fear avoidance, range of movement, medication, re-operation. Results At discharge, 110 (44%) eligible patients gave consent to be contacted. 59 (54%) patients were recruited. Loss to follow up was 39% at 12 weeks, with one site contributing 83% losses. Mean (SD) RMDQ was 10.07 (5.58) leaflet and 10.52 (5.94) physiotherapy/leaflet at baseline; and 5.37 (4.91) leaflet and 5.53 (4.49) physiotherapy/leaflet at 12 weeks. 5.1% zero scores at 12 weeks illustrated no floor effect. Sensitivity to change was assessed at 12 weeks with mean (SD) change -4.53 (6.41), 95%CI -7.61 to -1.44 for leaflet; and -6.18 (5.59), 95%CI -9.01 to -3.30 for physiotherapy/leaflet. RMDQ mean difference (95%CI) between change from baseline to twelve weeks was 1.65(-2.46 to 5.75). Mean difference (95%CI) between groups at 12 weeks was -0.16 (-3.36 to 3.04). Participant adherence with treatment was good. No adverse events were reported. Conclusions Both interventions were acceptable, and it is promising that they both

  16. Analysis and design of robust decentralized controllers for nonlinear systems

    SciTech Connect

    Schoenwald, D.A.

    1993-07-01

    Decentralized control strategies for nonlinear systems are achieved via feedback linearization techniques. New results on optimization and parameter robustness of non-linear systems are also developed. In addition, parametric uncertainty in large-scale systems is handled by sensitivity analysis and optimal control methods in a completely decentralized framework. This idea is applied to alleviate uncertainty in friction parameters for the gimbal joints on Space Station Freedom. As an example of decentralized nonlinear control, singular perturbation methods and distributed vibration damping are merged into a control strategy for a two-link flexible manipulator.

  17. A Comprehensive Robust Adaptive Controller for Gust Load Alleviation

    PubMed Central

    Quagliotti, Fulvia

    2014-01-01

    The objective of this paper is the implementation and validation of an adaptive controller for aircraft gust load alleviation. The contribution of this paper is the design of a robust controller that guarantees the reduction of the gust loads, even when the nominal conditions change. Some preliminary results are presented, considering the symmetric aileron deflection as control device. The proposed approach is validated on subsonic transport aircraft for different mass and flight conditions. Moreover, if the controller parameters are tuned for a specific gust model, even if the gust frequency changes, no parameter retuning is required. PMID:24688411

  18. Robust control of a bimorph mirror for adaptive optics systems.

    PubMed

    Baudouin, Lucie; Prieur, Christophe; Guignard, Fabien; Arzelier, Denis

    2008-07-10

    We apply robust control techniques to an adaptive optics system including a dynamic model of the deformable mirror. The dynamic model of the mirror is a modification of the usual plate equation. We propose also a state-space approach to model the turbulent phase. A continuous time control of our model is suggested, taking into account the frequential behavior of the turbulent phase. An H(infinity) controller is designed in an infinite-dimensional setting. Because of the multivariable nature of the control problem involved in adaptive optics systems, a significant improvement is obtained with respect to traditional single input-single output methods.

  19. Tweeting links to Cochrane Schizophrenia Group reviews: a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Adams, C E; Bodart, A Y M; Sampson, S; Zhao, S; Montgomery, A A

    2016-01-01

    Objective To assess the effects of using health social media on web activity. Design Individually randomised controlled parallel group superiority trial. Setting Twitter and Weibo. Participants 170 Cochrane Schizophrenia Group full reviews with an abstract and plain language summary web page. Interventions Three randomly ordered slightly different 140 character or less messages, each containing a short URL to the freely accessible summary page sent on specific times on one single day. This was compared with no messaging. Outcome The primary outcome was web page visits at 1 week. Secondary outcomes were other metrics of web activity at 1 week. Results 85 reviews were randomised to each of the intervention and control arms. Google Analytics allowed 100% follow-up within 1 week of completion. Intervention and control reviews received a total of 1162 and 449 visits, respectively (IRR 2.7, 95% CI 2.2 to 3.3). Fewer intervention reviews had single page only visits (16% vs 31%, OR 0.41, 0.19 to 0.88) and users spent more time viewing intervention reviews (geometric mean 76 vs 31 s, ratio 2.5, 1.3 to 4.6). Other secondary metrics of web activity all showed strong evidence in favour of the intervention. Conclusions Tweeting in this limited area of healthcare increases ‘product placement’ of evidence with the potential for that to influence care. Trial registration number ISRCTN84658943. PMID:26956164

  20. Open randomised controlled trial of inhaled nitric oxide and early dexamethasone in high risk preterm infants

    PubMed Central

    Subhedar, N; Ryan, S; Shaw, N

    1997-01-01

    AIM—To determine whether treatment with inhaled nitric oxide (NO) and/or dexamethasone reduces the incidence of chronic lung disease (CLD) and/or death in high risk preterm infants.
METHODS—Infants below 32 weeks of gestation were recruited at 96 hours of age if they were deemed to be at high risk of developing CLD. Infants were randomly assigned to one of four treatment groups using a factorial design: (1) 5-20 parts per million inhaled NO for 72 hours; (2) 0.5-1 mg/kg/day intravenous dexamethasone for 6 days; (3) both drugs together; (4) continued conventional management.
RESULTS—Forty two infants were randomised: 10 infants received inhaled NO alone; 11 dexamethasone alone; 10 both treatments; and 11 neither treatment. There was no difference in the combined incidence of CLD and/or death before discharge from hospital between either infants treated with inhaled NO and controls (RR 1.05, 95% CI 0.84-1.25), or those treated with dexamethasone and controls (RR 0.95, 95% CI 0.79-1.18).
CONCLUSIONS—At 96 hours of age, neither treatment with inhaled NO nor dexamethasone prevented CLD or death.

 Keywords: randomised controlled trial; nitric oxide; dexamethasone; chronic lung disease PMID:9462187

  1. Feasibility of surgical randomised controlled trials with a placebo arm: a systematic review

    PubMed Central

    Wartolowska, Karolina; Collins, Gary S; Hopewell, Sally; Judge, Andrew; Dean, Benjamin J F; Rombach, Ines; Beard, David J; Carr, Andrew J

    2016-01-01

    Objectives To find evidence, either corroborating or refuting, for many persisting beliefs regarding the feasibility of carrying out surgical randomised controlled trials with a placebo arm, with emphasis on the challenges related to recruitment, funding, anaesthesia or blinding. Design Systematic review. Data sources and study selection The analysis involved studies published between 1959 and 2014 that were identified during an earlier systematic review of benefits and harms of placebo-controlled surgical trials published in 2014. Results 63 trials were included in the review. The main problem reported in many trials was a very slow recruitment rate, mainly due to the difficulty in finding eligible patients. Existing placebo trials were funded equally often from commercial and non-commercial sources. General anaesthesia or sedation was used in 41% of studies. Among the reviewed trials, 81% were double-blinded, and 19% were single-blinded. Across the reviewed trials, 96% (range 50–100%) of randomised patients completed the study. The withdrawal rate during the study was similar in the surgical and in the placebo groups. Conclusions This review demonstrated that placebo-controlled surgical trials are feasible, at least for procedures with a lower level of invasiveness, but also that recruitment is difficult. Many of the presumed challenges to undertaking such trials, for example, funding, anaesthesia or blinding of patients and assessors, were not reported as obstacles to completion in any of the reviewed trials. PMID:27008687

  2. Out-of-hours antibiotic prescription after screening with C reactive protein: a randomised controlled study

    PubMed Central

    Rebnord, Ingrid Keilegavlen; Sandvik, Hogne; Batman Mjelle, Anders; Hunskaar, Steinar

    2016-01-01

    Objective To evaluate the effect of preconsultation C reactive protein (CRP) screening on antibiotic prescribing and referral to hospital in Norwegian primary care settings with low prevalence of serious infections. Design Randomised controlled observational study at out-of-hours services in Norway. Setting Primary care. Participants 401 children (0–6 years) with fever and/or respiratory symptoms were recruited from 5 different out-of-hours services (including 1 paediatric emergency clinic) in 2013–2015. Intervention Data were collected from questionnaires and clinical examination results. Every third child was randomised to a CRP test before the consultation; for the rest, the doctor ordered a CRP test if considered necessary. Outcome measures Main outcome variables were prescription of antibiotics and referral to hospital. Results In the group pretested with CRP, the antibiotic prescription rate was 26%, compared with 22% in the control group. In the group pretested with CRP, 5% were admitted to hospital, compared with 9% in the control group. These differences were not statistically significant. The main predictors for ordering a CRP test were parents' assessment of seriousness of the illness and the child's temperature. Paediatricians ordered CRP tests less frequently than did other doctors (9% vs 56%, p<0.001). Conclusions Preconsultation screening with CRP of children presenting to out-of-hours services with fever and/or respiratory symptoms does not significantly affect the prescription of antibiotics or referral to hospital. Trial registration number NCT02496559; Results. PMID:27173814

  3. Robust, Decoupled, Flight Control Design with Rate Saturating Actuators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Snell, S. A.; Hess, R. A.

    1997-01-01

    Techniques for the design of control systems for manually controlled, high-performance aircraft must provide the following: (1) multi-input, multi-output (MIMO) solutions, (2) acceptable handling qualities including no tendencies for pilot-induced oscillations, (3) a tractable approach for compensator design, (4) performance and stability robustness in the presence of significant plant uncertainty, and (5) performance and stability robustness in the presence actuator saturation (particularly rate saturation). A design technique built upon Quantitative Feedback Theory is offered as a candidate methodology which can provide flight control systems meeting these requirements, and do so over a considerable part of the flight envelope. An example utilizing a simplified model of a supermaneuverable fighter aircraft demonstrates the proposed design methodology.

  4. Robust control of hypersonic vehicles considering propulsive and aeroelastic effects

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Buschek, Harald; Calise, Anthony J.

    1993-01-01

    The influence of propulsion system variations and elastic fuselage behavior on the flight control system of an airbreathing hypersonic vehicle is investigated. Thrust vector magnitude and direction changes due to angle of attack variations affect the pitching moment. Low structural vibration frequencies may occur close to the rigid body modes influencing the angle of attack and lead to possible cross coupling. These effects are modeled as uncertainties in the context of a robust control study of a hypersonic vehicle model accelerating through Mach 8 using H-infinity and mu synthesis techniques. Various levels of uncertainty are introduced into the system. Both individual and simultaneous appearance of uncertainty are considered. The results indicate that the chosen design technique is suitable for this kind of problem provided that a fairly good knowledge of the effects mentioned above is available. The order of the designed controller is reduced but robust performance is lost which shows the need for fixed order design techniques.

  5. Decentralized adaptive control of robot manipulators with robust stabilization design

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yuan, Bau-San; Book, Wayne J.

    1988-01-01

    Due to geometric nonlinearities and complex dynamics, a decentralized technique for adaptive control for multilink robot arms is attractive. Lyapunov-function theory for stability analysis provides an approach to robust stabilization. Each joint of the arm is treated as a component subsystem. The adaptive controller is made locally stable with servo signals including proportional and integral gains. This results in the bound on the dynamical interactions with other subsystems. A nonlinear controller which stabilizes the system with uniform boundedness is used to improve the robustness properties of the overall system. As a result, the robot tracks the reference trajectories with convergence. This strategy makes computation simple and therefore facilitates real-time implementation.

  6. Robust stability and control for uncertain neutral time delay systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sakthivel, R.; Mathiyalagan, K.; Anthoni, S. Marshal

    2012-04-01

    In this article, the problem of robust stability and stabilisation for a class of uncertain neutral systems with discrete and distributed time delays is considered. By utilising a new Lyapunov functional based on the idea of delay partitioning approach, we employ the linear matrix inequality technique to derive delay-dependent criteria which ensures the robust stability of uncertain neutral systems. The obtained stability conditions are formulated in terms of linear matrix inequalities that can easily be solved by using standard software packages. Further, the result is extended to study the robust stabilisation for uncertain neutral systems with parameter uncertainties. A state feedback controller is proposed to guarantee the robust asymptotic stabilisation for uncertain systems and the controller is constructed in terms of the solution to a set of matrix inequalities. Finally, numerical examples are presented to illustrate the effectiveness and conservatism of the obtained results. It is shown that the results developed in this article can tolerate larger allowable delay than some existing works in the literature. Further, it is proved that the proposed criterion is also computationally less conservative when compared to some existing results.

  7. Robust control of burst suppression for medical coma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Westover, M. Brandon; Kim, Seong-Eun; Ching, ShiNung; Purdon, Patrick L.; Brown, Emery N.

    2015-08-01

    Objective. Medical coma is an anesthetic-induced state of brain inactivation, manifest in the electroencephalogram by burst suppression. Feedback control can be used to regulate burst suppression, however, previous designs have not been robust. Robust control design is critical under real-world operating conditions, subject to substantial pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic parameter uncertainty and unpredictable external disturbances. We sought to develop a robust closed-loop anesthesia delivery (CLAD) system to control medical coma. Approach. We developed a robust CLAD system to control the burst suppression probability (BSP). We developed a novel BSP tracking algorithm based on realistic models of propofol pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics. We also developed a practical method for estimating patient-specific pharmacodynamics parameters. Finally, we synthesized a robust proportional integral controller. Using a factorial design spanning patient age, mass, height, and gender, we tested whether the system performed within clinically acceptable limits. Throughout all experiments we subjected the system to disturbances, simulating treatment of refractory status epilepticus in a real-world intensive care unit environment. Main results. In 5400 simulations, CLAD behavior remained within specifications. Transient behavior after a step in target BSP from 0.2 to 0.8 exhibited a rise time (the median (min, max)) of 1.4 [1.1, 1.9] min; settling time, 7.8 [4.2, 9.0] min; and percent overshoot of 9.6 [2.3, 10.8]%. Under steady state conditions the CLAD system exhibited a median error of 0.1 [-0.5, 0.9]%; inaccuracy of 1.8 [0.9, 3.4]%; oscillation index of 1.8 [0.9, 3.4]%; and maximum instantaneous propofol dose of 4.3 [2.1, 10.5] mg kg-1. The maximum hourly propofol dose was 4.3 [2.1, 10.3] mg kg-1 h-1. Performance fell within clinically acceptable limits for all measures. Significance. A CLAD system designed using robust control theory achieves clinically acceptable

  8. Robust control of burst suppression for medical coma

    PubMed Central

    Westover, M Brandon; Kim, Seong-Eun; Ching, ShiNung; Purdon, Patrick L; Brown, Emery N

    2015-01-01

    Objective Medical coma is an anesthetic-induced state of brain inactivation, manifest in the electroencephalogram by burst suppression. Feedback control can be used to regulate burst suppression, however, previous designs have not been robust. Robust control design is critical under real-world operating conditions, subject to substantial pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic parameter uncertainty and unpredictable external disturbances. We sought to develop a robust closed-loop anesthesia delivery (CLAD) system to control medical coma. Approach We developed a robust CLAD system to control the burst suppression probability (BSP). We developed a novel BSP tracking algorithm based on realistic models of propofol pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics. We also developed a practical method for estimating patient-specific pharmacodynamics parameters. Finally, we synthesized a robust proportional integral controller. Using a factorial design spanning patient age, mass, height, and gender, we tested whether the system performed within clinically acceptable limits. Throughout all experiments we subjected the system to disturbances, simulating treatment of refractory status epilepticus in a real-world intensive care unit environment. Main results In 5400 simulations, CLAD behavior remained within specifications. Transient behavior after a step in target BSP from 0.2 to 0.8 exhibited a rise time (the median (min, max)) of 1.4 [1.1, 1.9] min; settling time, 7.8 [4.2, 9.0] min; and percent overshoot of 9.6 [2.3, 10.8]%. Under steady state conditions the CLAD system exhibited a median error of 0.1 [−0.5, 0.9]%; inaccuracy of 1.8 [0.9, 3.4]%; oscillation index of 1.8 [0.9, 3.4]%; and maximum instantaneous propofol dose of 4.3 [2.1, 10.5] mg kg−1. The maximum hourly propofol dose was 4.3 [2.1, 10.3] mg kg−1 h−1. Performance fell within clinically acceptable limits for all measures. Significance A CLAD system designed using robust control theory achieves clinically acceptable

  9. Robust sliding mode continuous control of an IM drive

    SciTech Connect

    Jezernik, K.; Hren, A.; Drevensek, D.

    1995-12-31

    A control approach for robust trajectory tracking of IM servodrive based on the variable structure systems (VSS) is described. A new discrete-time control algorithm has been developed by combining VSS and Lyapunov design. It possesses all the good properties of the sliding mode and avoids the unnecessary discontinuity of the control input, thus eliminating chattering which has been considering as serious obstacles for applications of VSS. A unified control approach for current, torque and motion control based on the discrete-time sliding mode for application in indirect vector control of an IM drive is developed. The sliding mode approach can be applied to the control of an Im drive due to the replacement of the hysteresis controller with widely used PWM technique. All the theoretical issues are verified by experiment. The experimental system consists of a transputer and a microcontroller, thus allowing parallel processing.

  10. Modeling, Robust Control, and Experimental Validation of a Supercavitating Vehicle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Escobar Sanabria, David

    This dissertation considers the mathematical modeling, control under uncertainty, and experimental validation of an underwater supercavitating vehicle. By traveling inside a gas cavity, a supercavitating vehicle reduces hydrodynamic drag, increases speed, and minimizes power consumption. The attainable speed and power efficiency make these vehicles attractive for undersea exploration, high-speed transportation, and defense. However, the benefits of traveling inside a cavity come with difficulties in controlling the vehicle dynamics. The main challenge is the nonlinear force that arises when the back-end of the vehicle pierces the cavity. This force, referred to as planing, leads to oscillatory motion and instability. Control technologies that are robust to planing and suited for practical implementation need to be developed. To enable these technologies, a low-order vehicle model that accounts for inaccuracy in the characterization of planing is required. Additionally, an experimental method to evaluate possible pitfalls in the models and controllers is necessary before undersea testing. The major contribution of this dissertation is a unified framework for mathematical modeling, robust control synthesis, and experimental validation of a supercavitating vehicle. First, we introduce affordable experimental methods for mathematical modeling and controller testing under planing and realistic flow conditions. Then, using experimental observations and physical principles, we create a low-order nonlinear model of the longitudinal vehicle motion. This model quantifies the planing uncertainty and is suitable for robust controller synthesis. Next, based on the vehicle model, we develop automated tools for synthesizing controllers that deliver a certificate of performance in the face of nonlinear and uncertain planing forces. We demonstrate theoretically and experimentally that the proposed controllers ensure higher performance when the uncertain planing dynamics are

  11. 1-year follow-up of neurofeedback treatment in adolescents with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder: randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Bongers, Ilja L.; Popma, Arne; Janssen, Tieme W.P.; van Nieuwenhuizen, Chijs

    2016-01-01

    Background Estimates of the effectiveness of neurofeedback as a treatment for attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) are mixed. Aims To investigate the long-term additional effects of neurofeedback (NFB) compared with treatment as usual (TAU) for adolescents with ADHD. Method Using a multicentre parallel-randomised controlled trial design, 60 adolescents with a DSM-IV-TR diagnosis of ADHD receiving NFB+TAU (n=41) or TAU (n=19) were followed up. Neurofeedback treatment consisted of approximately 37 sessions of theta/sensorimotor rhythm (SMR)-training on the vertex (Cz). Outcome measures included behavioural self-reports and neurocognitive measures. Allocation to the conditions was unmasked. Results At 1-year follow-up, inattention as reported by adolescents was decreased (range ηp2=0.23–0.36, P<0.01) and performance on neurocognitive tasks was faster (range ηp2=0.20–0.67, P<0.005) irrespective of treatment group. Conclusions Overall, NFB+TAU was as effective as TAU. Given the absence of robust additional effects of neurofeedback in the current study, results do not support the use of theta/SMR neurofeedback as a treatment for adolescents with ADHD and comorbid disorders in clinical practice. Declaration of interest None. Copyright and usage © The Royal College of Psychiatrists 2016. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Non-Commercial, No Derivatives (CC BY-NC-ND) licence. PMID:27703763

  12. Robust Feedback Control of Flow Induced Structural Radiation of Sound

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Heatwole, Craig M.; Bernhard, Robert J.; Franchek, Matthew A.

    1997-01-01

    A significant component of the interior noise of aircraft and automobiles is a result of turbulent boundary layer excitation of the vehicular structure. In this work, active robust feedback control of the noise due to this non-predictable excitation is investigated. Both an analytical model and experimental investigations are used to determine the characteristics of the flow induced structural sound radiation problem. The problem is shown to be broadband in nature with large system uncertainties associated with the various operating conditions. Furthermore the delay associated with sound propagation is shown to restrict the use of microphone feedback. The state of the art control methodologies, IL synthesis and adaptive feedback control, are evaluated and shown to have limited success for solving this problem. A robust frequency domain controller design methodology is developed for the problem of sound radiated from turbulent flow driven plates. The control design methodology uses frequency domain sequential loop shaping techniques. System uncertainty, sound pressure level reduction performance, and actuator constraints are included in the design process. Using this design method, phase lag was added using non-minimum phase zeros such that the beneficial plant dynamics could be used. This general control approach has application to lightly damped vibration and sound radiation problems where there are high bandwidth control objectives requiring a low controller DC gain and controller order.

  13. Improving hypertension control among excessive alcohol drinkers: a randomised controlled trial in France. The WALPA Group.

    PubMed Central

    Lang, T; Nicaud, V; Darné, B; Rueff, B

    1995-01-01

    OBJECTIVES--To improve blood pressure control among hypertensive ( > 140/90 mmHg) excessive alcohol drinkers. DESIGN--Fourteen worksite physicians were randomised onto an intervention group and a control group. The intervention was based on training the worksite physicians and follow up of those hypertensive subjects defined as excessive drinkers. Follow up was based on self monitoring of alcohol consumption by the subject, in view of the results of their gamma glutamyl transferase (GGT) activity determination. SETTING--Fourteen workplaces in France - mainly in the industrial sector. SUBJECTS--Altogether 15 301 subjects were screened by the 14 physicians: 129 of these were included in the study. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES--This was the difference between the initial systolic blood pressure (SBP) and the SBP one year later (delta BP). Secondary criteria were the difference between the initial and final diastolic blood pressure (delta DBP) and delta BP at two years; antihypertensive treatment; state alcohol consumption (delta AC); delta GGT; and body mass index (delta BMI). RESULTS--The decrease in SBP levels was significantly larger in the intervention group than in the control group: at one year, delta SBP values were -11.9 (15.6) mmHg and -4.6 (13.8) respectively (p < 0.05). This benefit was still observed after two years of follow up (-13.8 (17.4) mmHg v -7.5 (14.2) mmHg (p < 0.05)). No difference was observed in DBP. The percentage of treated subjects did not differ between groups. At one year, delta AC was larger in the intervention group (-2.8 (5.2) U/d) than in the control group (-1.6 (3.4) (p < 0.1)). delta GGT and delta BMI did not differ between the two groups. A weak positive correlation was observed between delta AC and delta SBP (r = 0.16). CONCLUSION--An intervention aimed at the hypertensive excessive drinkers in a working population was found to be effective in reducing SBP on a long term basis (two years). The mechanisms of reduction in alcohol

  14. A randomised controlled trial of a self-management plan for patients with newly diagnosed angina.

    PubMed Central

    Lewin, R J P; Furze, G; Robinson, J; Griffith, K; Wiseman, S; Pye, M; Boyle, R

    2002-01-01

    BACKGROUND: There are approximately 1.8 million patients with angina in the United Kingdom, many of whom report a poor quality of life, including raised levels of anxiety and depression. AIM: To evaluate the effect of a cognitive behavioural disease management programme, the Angina Plan, on psychological adjustment in patients newly diagnosed with angina pectoris. DESIGN OF STUDY: Randomised controlled trial. SETTING: Patients from GP practices in a Northern UK city (York) between April 1999 and May 2000. METHOD: Recruited patients were randomised to receive the Angina Plan or to a routine, practice nurse-led secondary prevention educational session. RESULTS: Twenty of the 25 practices invited to join the study supplied patients' names; 142 patients attended an assessment clinic and were randomised There were no significant differences in any baseline measures. At the six month post-treatment follow-up, 130 (91%) patients were reassessed. When compared with the educational session patients (using analysis of covariance adjusted for baseline scores in an intention-to-treat analysis) Angina Plan patients showed a greater reduction in anxiety (P = 0.05) and depression (P = 0.01), the frequency of angina (reduced by three episodes per week, versus a reduction of 0.4 per week, P = 0.016) the use of glyceryl trinitrate (reduced by 4.19 fewer doses per week versus a reduction of 0.59 per week, P = 0.018), and physical limitations (P<0.001: Seattle Angina Questionnaire). They were also more likely to report having changed their diet (41 versus 21, P<0.001) and increased their daily walking (30 versus 2, P<0.001). There was no significant difference between the groups on the other sub-scales of the Seattle Angina Questionnaire or in any of the medical variables measured. CONCLUSION: The Angina Plan appears to improve the psychological, symptomatic, and functional status of patients newly diagnosed with angina. PMID:12030661

  15. Total ankle replacement versus arthrodesis (TARVA): protocol for a multicentre randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Goldberg, Andrew J; Zaidi, Razi; Thomson, Claire; Doré, Caroline J; Cro, Suzie; Round, Jeff; Molloy, Andrew; Davies, Mark; Karski, Michael; Kim, Louise; Cooke, Paul

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Total ankle replacement (TAR) or ankle arthrodesis (fusion) is the main surgical treatments for end-stage ankle osteoarthritis (OA). The popularity of ankle replacement is increasing while ankle fusion rates remain static. Both treatments have efficacy but to date all studies comparing the 2 have been observational without randomisation, and there are no published guidelines as to the most appropriate management. The TAR versus arthrodesis (TARVA) trial aims to compare the clinical and cost-effectiveness of TAR against ankle arthrodesis in the treatment of end-stage ankle OA in patients aged 50–85 years. Methods and analysis TARVA is a multicentre randomised controlled trial that will randomise 328 patients aged 50–85 years with end-stage ankle arthritis. The 2 arms of the study will be TAR or ankle arthrodesis with 164 patients in each group. Up to 16 UK centres will participate. Patients will have clinical assessments and complete questionnaires before their operation and at 6, 12, 26 and 52 weeks after surgery. The primary clinical outcome of the study is a validated patient-reported outcome measure, the Manchester Oxford foot questionnaire, captured preoperatively and 12 months after surgery. Secondary outcomes include quality-of-life scores, complications, revision, reoperation and a health economic analysis. Ethics and dissemination The protocol has been approved by the National Research Ethics Service Committee (London, Bloomsbury 14/LO/0807). This manuscript is based on V.5.0 of the protocol. The trial findings will be disseminated through peer-reviewed publications and conference presentations. Trial registration number NCT02128555. PMID:27601503

  16. Temporary sympathectomy in chronic refractory angina: a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Denby, Christine; Eleuteri, Antonio; Tsang, Hoo kee; Leach, Austin; Hammond, Clare; Bridson, John D; Fisher, Michael; Elt, Matthew; Laflin, Robert; Fisher, Anthony C

    2015-01-01

    Background: Temporary sympathectomy by injection of bupivacaine at the site of the left stellate ganglion is used in the management of refractory angina at several UK centres. Although patients frequently report significant reduction in symptoms, efficacy has not been established by double-blind, randomised placebo-controlled trial (RCT). Objective: To investigate the efficacy of the procedure for the first time by a double-blind RCT. Methods: Consecutive patients referred to the authors’ National Health Service (NHS) angina centre who were candidates for temporary sympathectomy were invited to participate in a trial. A total of 65 patients were randomised to receive either bupivacaine or saline injections. Identical syringes were prepared remotely, blinding patients and staff from randomisation. Cardiac autonomic function was measured 3 hours pre- and post-injection using new heart rate variability (HRV) analyses. Angina episodes were recorded contemporaneously by patients in study diaries in the 7-day periods pre- and post-injection. Results: In 51 patients suitable for analysis, no significant differences between the active and placebo groups were found in patient-recorded frequency or intensity of angina episodes pre- and post-injection. However, across both groups combined, a significant difference was found in the frequency of angina episodes pre- and post-injection. Conclusion: The reduction in frequency of angina episodes produced by this procedure may not be due to drug pharmacology. It may be a placebo response or due to the mechanical effects of the injection of fluid. There is a need for further work using a larger patient cohort considering both mechanical and psychological factors. PMID:26516570

  17. Pragmatic randomised controlled trial of group psychoeducation versus group support in the maintenance of bipolar disorder

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Non-didactically delivered curriculum based group psychoeducation has been shown to be more effective than both group support in a specialist mood disorder centre in Spain (with effects lasting up to five years), and treatment as usual in Australia. It is unclear whether the specific content and form of group psychoeducation is effective or the chance to meet and work collaboratively with other peers. The main objective of this trial is to determine whether curriculum based group psychoeducation is more clinically and cost effective than unstructured peer group support. Methods/design Single blind two centre cluster randomised controlled trial of 21 sessions group psychoeducation versus 21 sessions group peer support in adults with bipolar 1 or 2 disorder, not in current episode but relapsed in the previous two years. Individual randomisation is to either group at each site. The groups are carefully matched for the number and type of therapists, length and frequency of the interventions and overall aim of the groups but differ in content and style of delivery. The primary outcome is time to next bipolar episode with measures of the therapeutic process, barriers and drivers to the effective delivery of the interventions and economic analysis. Follow up is for 96 weeks after randomisation. Discussion The trial has features of both an efficacy and an effectiveness trial design. For generalisability in England it is set in routine public mental health practice with a high degree of expert patient involvement. Trial Registration ISRCTN62761948 Funding National Institute for Health Research, England. PMID:21777426

  18. Computerised cognitive behaviour therapy for depression in adolescents: study protocol for a feasibility randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Wright, Barry; Tindall, Lucy; Littlewood, Elizabeth; Adamson, Joy; Allgar, Victoria; Bennett, Sophie; Gilbody, Simon; Verduyn, Chrissie; Alderson-Day, Ben; Dyson, Lisa; Trépel, Dominic; Ali, Shehzad

    2014-01-01

    Introduction The 1 year prevalence of depression in adolescents is about 2%. Treatment with antidepressant medication is not recommended for initial treatment in young people due to concerns over high side effects, poor efficacy and addictive potential. Evidence suggests that cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) is an effective treatment for depression and is currently one of the main treatment options recommended in adolescents. Given the affinity young people have with information technology they may be treated effectively, more widely and earlier in their illness evolution using computer-administered CBT (CCBT). Currently little is known about the clinical and resource implications of implementing CCBT within the National Health Service for adolescents with low mood/depression. We aim to establish the feasibility of running a fully powered randomised controlled trial (RCT). Methods and analysis Adolescents aged 12–18 with low mood/depression, (scoring ≥20 on the Mood and Feelings Questionnaire (MFQ)), will be approached to participate. Consenting participants will be randomised to either a CCBT programme (Stressbusters) or accessing selected websites providing information about low mood/depression. The primary outcome measure will be the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI). Participants will also complete generic health measures (EQ5D-Y, HUI2) and resource use questionnaires to examine the feasibility of cost-effectiveness analysis. Questionnaires will be completed at baseline, 4 and 12-month follow-ups. Progress and risk will be monitored via the MFQ administered at each treatment session. The acceptability of a CCBT programme to adolescents; and the willingness of clinicians to recruit participants and of participants to be randomised, recruitment rates, attrition rates and questionnaire completion rates will be collected for feasibility analysis. We will estimate ‘numbers needed’ to plan a fully powered RCT of clinical and cost-effectiveness. Ethics and

  19. Biodegradable stent or balloon dilatation for benign oesophageal stricture: Pilot randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Dhar, Anjan; Close, Helen; Viswanath, Yirupaiahgari K; Rees, Colin J; Hancock, Helen C; Dwarakanath, A Deepak; Maier, Rebecca H; Wilson, Douglas; Mason, James M

    2014-01-01

    AIM: To undertake a randomised pilot study comparing biodegradable stents and endoscopic dilatation in patients with strictures. METHODS: This British multi-site study recruited seventeen symptomatic adult patients with refractory strictures. Patients were randomised using a multicentre, blinded assessor design, comparing a biodegradable stent (BS) with endoscopic dilatation (ED). The primary endpoint was the average dysphagia score during the first 6 mo. Secondary endpoints included repeat endoscopic procedures, quality of life, and adverse events. Secondary analysis included follow-up to 12 mo. Sensitivity analyses explored alternative estimation methods for dysphagia and multiple imputation of missing values. Nonparametric tests were used. RESULTS: Although both groups improved, the average dysphagia scores for patients receiving stents were higher after 6 mo: BS-ED 1.17 (95%CI: 0.63-1.78) P = 0.029. The finding was robust under different estimation methods. Use of additional endoscopic procedures and quality of life (QALY) estimates were similar for BS and ED patients at 6 and 12 mo. Concomitant use of gastrointestinal prescribed medication was greater in the stent group (BS 5.1, ED 2.0 prescriptions; P < 0.001), as were related adverse events (BS 1.4, ED 0.0 events; P = 0.024). Groups were comparable at baseline and findings were statistically significant but numbers were small due to under-recruitment. The oesophageal tract has somatic sensitivity and the process of the stent dissolving, possibly unevenly, might promote discomfort or reflux. CONCLUSION: Stenting was associated with greater dysphagia, co-medication and adverse events. Rigorously conducted and adequately powered trials are needed before widespread adoption of this technology. PMID:25561787

  20. Robust Concentration and Frequency Control in Oscillatory Homeostats

    PubMed Central

    Thorsen, Kristian; Agafonov, Oleg; Selstø, Christina H.; Jolma, Ingunn W.; Ni, Xiao Y.; Drengstig, Tormod; Ruoff, Peter

    2014-01-01

    Homeostatic and adaptive control mechanisms are essential for keeping organisms structurally and functionally stable. Integral feedback is a control theoretic concept which has long been known to keep a controlled variable robustly (i.e. perturbation-independent) at a given set-point by feeding the integrated error back into the process that generates . The classical concept of homeostasis as robust regulation within narrow limits is often considered as unsatisfactory and even incompatible with many biological systems which show sustained oscillations, such as circadian rhythms and oscillatory calcium signaling. Nevertheless, there are many similarities between the biological processes which participate in oscillatory mechanisms and classical homeostatic (non-oscillatory) mechanisms. We have investigated whether biological oscillators can show robust homeostatic and adaptive behaviors, and this paper is an attempt to extend the homeostatic concept to include oscillatory conditions. Based on our previously published kinetic conditions on how to generate biochemical models with robust homeostasis we found two properties, which appear to be of general interest concerning oscillatory and homeostatic controlled biological systems. The first one is the ability of these oscillators (“oscillatory homeostats”) to keep the average level of a controlled variable at a defined set-point by involving compensatory changes in frequency and/or amplitude. The second property is the ability to keep the period/frequency of the oscillator tuned within a certain well-defined range. In this paper we highlight mechanisms that lead to these two properties. The biological applications of these findings are discussed using three examples, the homeostatic aspects during oscillatory calcium and p53 signaling, and the involvement of circadian rhythms in homeostatic regulation. PMID:25238410

  1. Adaptive robust control of longitudinal and transverse electron beam profiles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rezaeizadeh, Amin; Schilcher, Thomas; Smith, Roy S.

    2016-05-01

    Feedback control of the longitudinal and transverse electron beam profiles are considered to be critical for beam control in accelerators. In the feedback scheme, the longitudinal or transverse beam profile is measured and compared to a desired profile to give an error estimate. The error is then used to act on the appropriate actuators to correct the profile. The role of the transverse feedback is to steer the beam in a particular trajectory, known as the "orbit." The common approach for orbit correction is based on approximately inverting the response matrix, and in the best case, involves regulating or filtering the singular values. In the current contribution, a more systematic and structured way of handling orbit correction is introduced giving robustness against uncertainties in the response matrix. Moreover, the input bounds are treated to avoid violating the limits of the corrector currents. The concept of the robust orbit correction has been successfully tested at the SwissFEL injector test facility. In the SwissFEL machine, a photo-injector laser system extracts electrons from a cathode and a similar robust control method is developed for the longitudinal feedback control of the current profile of the electron bunch. The method manipulates the angles of the crystals in the laser system to produce a desired charge distribution over the electron bunch length. This approach paves the way towards automation of laser pulse stacking.

  2. Physical Activity Counselling during Pulmonary Rehabilitation in Patients with COPD: A Randomised Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    Burtin, Chris; Langer, Daniel; van Remoortel, Hans; Demeyer, Heleen; Gosselink, Rik; Decramer, Marc; Dobbels, Fabienne; Janssens, Wim; Troosters, Thierry

    2015-01-01

    Background Pulmonary rehabilitation programs only modestly enhance daily physical activity levels in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). This randomised controlled trial investigates the additional effect of an individual activity counselling program during pulmonary rehabilitation on physical activity levels in patients with moderate to very severe COPD. Methods Eighty patients (66±7 years, 81% male, forced expiratory volume in 1 second 45±16% of predicted) referred for a six‐month multidisciplinary pulmonary rehabilitation program were randomised. The intervention group was offered an additional eight-session activity counselling program. The primary outcomes were daily walking time and time spent in at least moderate intense activities. Results Baseline daily walking time was similar in the intervention and control group (median 33 [interquartile range 16–47] vs 29 [17–44]) whereas daily time spent in at least moderate intensity was somewhat higher in the intervention group (17[4–50] vs 12[2–26] min). No significant intervention*time interaction effects were observed in daily physical activity levels. In the whole group, daily walking time and time spent in at least moderate intense activities did not significantly change over time. Conclusions The present study identified no additional effect of eight individual activity counselling sessions during pulmonary rehabilitation to enhance physical activity levels in patients with COPD. Trial Registration clinicaltrials.gov NCT00948623 PMID:26697853

  3. Just another drug? A philosophical assessment of randomised controlled studies on intercessory prayer.

    PubMed

    Turner, D D

    2006-08-01

    The empirical results from recent randomised controlled studies on remote, intercessory prayer remain mixed. Several studies have, however, appeared in prestigious medical journals, and it is believed by many researchers, including apparent sceptics, that it makes sense to study intercessory prayer as if it were just another experimental drug treatment. This assumption is challenged by (1) discussing problems posed by the need to obtain the informed consent of patients participating in the studies; (2) pointing out that if the intercessors are indeed conscientious religious believers, they should subvert the studies by praying for patients randomised to the control groups; and (3) showing that the studies in question are characterised by an internal philosophical tension because the intercessors and the scientists must take incompatible views of what is going on: the intercessors must take a causation-first view, whereas the scientists must take a correlation-first view. It therefore makes no ethical or methodological sense to study remote, intercessory prayer as if it were just another drug.

  4. Adolescents’ use of purpose built shade in secondary schools: cluster randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    White, Vanessa; Wakefield, Melanie A; Jamsen, Kris M; White, Victoria; Livingston, Patricia M; English, Dallas R; Simpson, Julie A

    2009-01-01

    Objective To examine whether students use or avoid newly shaded areas created by shade sails installed at schools. Design Cluster randomised controlled trial with secondary schools as the unit of randomisation. Setting 51 secondary schools with limited available shade, in Australia, assessed over two spring and summer terms. Participants Students outside at lunch times. Intervention Purpose built shade sails were installed in winter 2005 at full sun study sites to increase available shade for students in the school grounds. Main outcome measure Mean number of students using the primary study sites during weekly observations at lunch time. Results Over the study period the mean change in students using the primary study site from pre-test to post-test was 2.63 (95% confidence interval 0.87 to 4.39) students in intervention schools and −0.03 (−1.16 to 1.09) students in control schools. The difference in mean change between groups was 2.67 (0.65 to 4.68) students (P=0.011). Conclusions Students used rather than avoided newly shaded areas provided by purpose built shade sails at secondary schools in this trial, suggesting a practical means of reducing adolescents’ exposure to ultraviolet radiation. Trial registration Exempt. PMID:19223344

  5. Transitional care for the highest risk patients: findings of a randomised control study

    PubMed Central

    Low, Lian Leng; Allen, John; Barbier, Sylvaine; Ng, Lee Beng; Ng, Matthew Joo Ming; Tay, Wei Yi; Tan, Shu Yun

    2015-01-01

    Background Interventions to prevent readmissions of patients at highest risk have not been rigorously evaluated. We conducted a randomised controlled trial to determine if a post-discharge transitional care programme can reduce readmissions of such patients in Singapore. Methods We randomised 840 patients with two or more unscheduled readmissions in the prior 90 days and Length of stay, Acuity of admission, Comorbidity of patient, Emergency department utilisation score ≥10 to the intervention programme (n = 419) or control (n = 421). Patients allocated to the intervention group received post-discharge surveillance by a multidisciplinary integrated care team and early review in the clinic. The primary outcome was the proportion of patients with at least one unscheduled readmission within 30 days after discharge. Results We found no statistically significant reduction in readmissions or emergency department visits in patients on the intervention group compared to usual care. However, patients in the intervention group reported greater patient satisfaction (p < 0.001). Conclusion Any beneficial effect of interventions initiated after discharge is small for high-risk patients with multiple comorbidity and complex care needs. Future transitional care interventions should focus on providing the entire cycle of care for such patients starting from time of admission to final transition to the primary care setting. Trial Registration Clinicaltrials.gov, no NCT02325752 PMID:27118956

  6. Visibility aids for pedestrians and cyclists: a systematic review of randomised controlled trials.

    PubMed

    Kwan, Irene; Mapstone, James

    2004-05-01

    This study aims to quantify the effect of visibility aids on the occurrence of pedestrian and cyclist-motor vehicle collisions and injuries, and drivers' responses in detection and recognition. Trial reports were systematically reviewed according to predefined eligibility criteria, including randomised controlled trials or controlled before-and-after trials comparing visibility aids and no visibility aids, and of different visibility aids on pedestrian and cyclist safety, and drivers' responses in detection and recognition. This included trials in which the order of interventions was randomised, or balanced using a Latin square design. Two reviewers independently assessed validity of trials and abstracted data. The main outcome measures were pedestrian and cyclist-motor vehicle collisions and injuries, and drivers'/observers' responses in the detection and recognition time, distance and frequency. No trials which assessed the effect of visibility aids on pedestrian and cyclist-motor vehicle collisions and injuries were identified. Twelve trials examined the effectiveness of daytime visibility aids and 25 trials on night time visibility aids, including 882 participants. Drivers' and observers' detection and recognition improved with visibility aids. For daytime, fluorescent materials in yellow, red and orange colours enhanced detection and recognition. "Biomotion" markings enhanced recognition. Substantial heterogeneity between the trials limits the possibility for meta-analysis. Visibility aids have the potential to improve detection and recognition and would merit further development to gain public acceptance. However, the impact of visibility aids on pedestrian and cyclist safety is unknown and needs to be determined. PMID:15003574

  7. Robust adaptive backstepping control for reentry reusable launch vehicles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Zhen; Wu, Zhong; Du, Yijiang

    2016-09-01

    During the reentry process of reusable launch vehicles (RLVs), the large range of flight envelope will not only result in high nonlinearities, strong coupling and fast time-varying characteristics of the attitude dynamics, but also result in great uncertainties in the atmospheric density, aerodynamic coefficients and environmental disturbances, etc. In order to attenuate the effects of these problems on the control performance of the reentry process, a robust adaptive backstepping control (RABC) strategy is proposed for RLV in this paper. This strategy consists of two-loop controllers designed via backstepping method. Both the outer and the inner loop adopt a robust adaptive controller, which can deal with the disturbances and uncertainties by the variable-structure term with the estimation of their bounds. The outer loop can track the desired attitude by the design of virtual control-the desired angular velocity, while the inner one can track the desired angular velocity by the design of control torque. Theoretical analysis indicates that the closed-loop system under the proposed control strategy is globally asymptotically stable. Even if the boundaries of the disturbances and uncertainties are unknown, the attitude can track the desired value accurately. Simulation results of a certain RLV demonstrate the effectiveness of the control strategy.

  8. Frequency domain identification for robust large space structure control design

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yam, Y.; Bayard, D. S.; Scheid, R. E.

    1991-01-01

    A methodology is demonstrated for frequency domain identification of large space structures which systematically transforms experimental raw data into a form required for synthesizing H(infinity) controllers using modern robust control design software (e.g., Matlab Toolboxes). A unique feature of this approach is that the additive uncertainty is characterized to a specified statistic confidence rather than with hard bounds. In this study, the difference in robust performance is minimal between the two levels of confidence. In general cases, the present methodology provides a tool for performance/confidence level tradeoff studies. For simplicity, the additive uncertainty on a frequency grid is considered and the interpolation error in between grid points is neglected.

  9. Parametric uncertainty modeling for application to robust control

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Belcastro, Christine M.; Chang, B.-C.; Fischl, Robert

    1993-01-01

    Viewgraphs and a paper on parametric uncertainty modeling for application to robust control are included. Advanced robust control system analysis and design is based on the availability of an uncertainty description which separates the uncertain system elements from the nominal system. Although this modeling structure is relatively straightforward to obtain for multiple unstructured uncertainties modeled throughout the system, it is difficult to formulate for many problems involving real parameter variations. Furthermore, it is difficult to ensure that the uncertainty model is formulated such that the dimension of the resulting model is minimal. A procedure for obtaining an uncertainty model for real uncertain parameter problems in which the uncertain parameters can be represented in a multilinear form is presented. Furthermore, the procedure is formulated such that the resulting uncertainty model is minimal (or near minimal) relative to a given state space realization of the system. The approach is demonstrated for a multivariable third-order example problem having four uncertain parameters.

  10. Robust control charts in industrial production of olive oil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grilo, Luís M.; Mateus, Dina M. R.; Alves, Ana C.; Grilo, Helena L.

    2014-10-01

    Acidity is one of the most important variables in the quality analysis and characterization of olive oil. During the industrial production we use individuals and moving range charts to monitor this variable, which is not always normal distributed. After a brief exploratory data analysis, where we use the bootstrap method, we construct control charts, before and after a Box-Cox transformation, and compare their robustness and performance.

  11. The effects of the Bowen technique on hamstring flexibility over time: a randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Marr, Michelle; Baker, Julian; Lambon, Nicky; Perry, Jo

    2011-07-01

    The hamstring muscles are regularly implicated in recurrent injuries, movement dysfunction and low back pain. Links between limited flexibility and development of neuromusculoskeletal symptoms are frequently reported. The Bowen Technique is used to treat many conditions including lack of flexibility. The study set out to investigate the effect of the Bowen Technique on hamstring flexibility over time. An assessor-blind, prospective, randomised controlled trial was performed on 120 asymptomatic volunteers. Participants were randomly allocated into a control group or Bowen group. Three flexibility measurements occurred over one week, using an active knee extension test. The intervention group received a single Bowen treatment. A repeated measures univariate analysis of variance, across both groups for the three time periods, revealed significant within-subject and between-subject differences for the Bowen group. Continuing increases in flexibility levels were observed over one week. No significant change over time was noted for the control group.

  12. Robust Nonlinear Feedback Control of Aircraft Propulsion Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Garrard, William L.; Balas, Gary J.; Litt, Jonathan (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    This is the final report on the research performed under NASA Glen grant NASA/NAG-3-1975 concerning feedback control of the Pratt & Whitney (PW) STF 952, a twin spool, mixed flow, after burning turbofan engine. The research focussed on the design of linear and gain-scheduled, multivariable inner-loop controllers for the PW turbofan engine using H-infinity and linear, parameter-varying (LPV) control techniques. The nonlinear turbofan engine simulation was provided by PW within the NASA Rocket Engine Transient Simulator (ROCETS) simulation software environment. ROCETS was used to generate linearized models of the turbofan engine for control design and analysis as well as the simulation environment to evaluate the performance and robustness of the controllers. Comparison between the H-infinity, and LPV controllers are made with the baseline multivariable controller and developed by Pratt & Whitney engineers included in the ROCETS simulation. Simulation results indicate that H-infinity and LPV techniques effectively achieve desired response characteristics with minimal cross coupling between commanded values and are very robust to unmodeled dynamics and sensor noise.

  13. An adaptive robust controller for time delay maglev transportation systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Milani, Reza Hamidi; Zarabadipour, Hassan; Shahnazi, Reza

    2012-12-01

    For engineering systems, uncertainties and time delays are two important issues that must be considered in control design. Uncertainties are often encountered in various dynamical systems due to modeling errors, measurement noises, linearization and approximations. Time delays have always been among the most difficult problems encountered in process control. In practical applications of feedback control, time delay arises frequently and can severely degrade closed-loop system performance and in some cases, drives the system to instability. Therefore, stability analysis and controller synthesis for uncertain nonlinear time-delay systems are important both in theory and in practice and many analytical techniques have been developed using delay-dependent Lyapunov function. In the past decade the magnetic and levitation (maglev) transportation system as a new system with high functionality has been the focus of numerous studies. However, maglev transportation systems are highly nonlinear and thus designing controller for those are challenging. The main topic of this paper is to design an adaptive robust controller for maglev transportation systems with time-delay, parametric uncertainties and external disturbances. In this paper, an adaptive robust control (ARC) is designed for this purpose. It should be noted that the adaptive gain is derived from Lyapunov-Krasovskii synthesis method, therefore asymptotic stability is guaranteed.

  14. Psychosocial interventions for suicidal ideation, plans, and attempts: A database of randomised controlled trials

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Research in suicide prevention using psychosocial interventions is rapidly advancing. However, randomised controlled trials are published across a range of medical, psychological and sociology journals, and it can be difficult to locate a full set of research studies. In this paper, we present a database of randomised controlled outcome studies on psychosocial interventions targeting suicidal behaviour. The database is updated annually and can be accessed by contacting the corresponding author. Description A comprehensive literature search of the major bibliographical databases (PsycINFO; PubMed; Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials) was conducted for articles published between 1800 to July 30 2013, and examined reference lists of previous relevant reviews and included papers to locate additional references. Studies were included if they featured a randomised controlled design in which the effects of a psychosocial intervention were compared to a control condition (no intervention, attention placebo, wait-list, treatment-as-usual [TAU]), another psychosocial intervention or a pharmacological intervention. In total, 12,250 abstracts were identified. Of these, 131 studies met eligibility criteria and were included. Each paper was then coded into categories of participant characteristics (age, gender, formal diagnosis, primary reason for recruitment); details of the intervention (recruitment setting, content, intervention setting, administering individual, delivery type, delivery format, delivery frequency, delivery length); and study characteristics (control and experimental conditions, primary outcome/s, secondary outcome/s, follow-up period). One paper has been published from the database using studies collected and coded prior to 2012. Conclusion The database and listing of 131 studies is available for use by suicide prevention researchers. It provides a strong starting point for systematic reviews and meta-analyses of treatments and

  15. The feasibility of a randomised controlled trial of physiotherapy for adults with joint hypermobility syndrome.

    PubMed Central

    Palmer, Shea; Cramp, Fiona; Clark, Emma; Lewis, Rachel; Brookes, Sara; Hollingworth, William; Welton, Nicky; Thom, Howard; Terry, Rohini; Rimes, Katharine A; Horwood, Jeremy

    2016-01-01

    BACKGROUND Joint hypermobility syndrome (JHS) is a heritable disorder associated with laxity and pain in multiple joints. Physiotherapy is the mainstay of treatment, but there is little research investigating its clinical effectiveness. OBJECTIVES To develop a comprehensive physiotherapy intervention for adults with JHS; to pilot the intervention; and to conduct a pilot randomised controlled trial (RCT) to determine the feasibility of conducting a future definitive RCT. DESIGN Patients' and health professionals' perspectives on physiotherapy for JHS were explored in focus groups (stage 1). A working group of patient research partners, clinicians and researchers used this information to develop the physiotherapy intervention. This was piloted and refined on the basis of patients' and physiotherapists' feedback (stage 2). A parallel two-arm pilot RCT compared 'advice' with 'advice and physiotherapy' (stage 3). Random allocation was via an automated randomisation service, devised specifically for the study. Owing to the nature of the interventions, it was not possible to blind clinicians or patients to treatment allocation. SETTING Stage 1 - focus groups were conducted in four UK locations. Stages 2 and 3 - piloting of the intervention and the pilot RCT were conducted in two UK secondary care NHS trusts. PARTICIPANTS Stage 1 - patient focus group participants (n = 25, three men) were aged > 18 years, had a JHS diagnosis and had received physiotherapy within the preceding 12 months. The health professional focus group participants (n = 16, three men; 14 physiotherapists, two podiatrists) had experience of managing JHS. Stage 2 - patient participants (n = 8) were aged > 18 years, had a JHS diagnosis and no other musculoskeletal conditions causing pain. Stage 3 - patient participants for the pilot RCT (n = 29) were as for stage 2 but the lower age limit was 16 years. INTERVENTION For the pilot RCT (stage 3) the advice intervention was a one

  16. Robust nonlinear variable selective control for networked systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rahmani, Behrooz

    2016-10-01

    This paper is concerned with the networked control of a class of uncertain nonlinear systems. In this way, Takagi-Sugeno (T-S) fuzzy modelling is used to extend the previously proposed variable selective control (VSC) methodology to nonlinear systems. This extension is based upon the decomposition of the nonlinear system to a set of fuzzy-blended locally linearised subsystems and further application of the VSC methodology to each subsystem. To increase the applicability of the T-S approach for uncertain nonlinear networked control systems, this study considers the asynchronous premise variables in the plant and the controller, and then introduces a robust stability analysis and control synthesis. The resulting optimal switching-fuzzy controller provides a minimum guaranteed cost on an H2 performance index. Simulation studies on three nonlinear benchmark problems demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed method.

  17. Anticipated regret to increase uptake of colorectal cancer screening (ARTICS): A randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed

    O'Carroll, Ronan E; Chambers, Julie A; Brownlee, Linda; Libby, Gillian; Steele, Robert J C

    2015-10-01

    Screening is important for early detection of colorectal cancer. Our aim was to determine whether a simple anticipated regret (AR) intervention could increase uptake of colorectal cancer screening. A randomised controlled trial of a simple, questionnaire-based AR intervention, delivered alongside existing pre-notification letters, was conducted. A total of 60,000 adults aged 50-74 years from the Scottish National Screening programme were randomised into the following groups: (1) no questionnaire (control), (2) Health Locus of Control questionnaire (HLOC) or (3) HLOC plus AR questionnaire. The primary outcome was return of the guaiac faecal occult blood test (FOBT). The secondary outcomes included intention to return test kit and perceived disgust (ICK). A total of 59,366 people were analysed as allocated (intention-to-treat (ITT)); no overall differences were seen between the treatment groups on FOBT uptake (control: 57.3%, HLOC: 56.9%, AR: 57.4%). In total, 13,645 (34.2%) individuals returned the questionnaires. Analysis of the secondary questionnaire measures showed that AR indirectly affected FOBT uptake via intention, whilst ICK directly affected FOBT uptake over and above intention. The effect of AR on FOBT uptake was also moderated by intention strength: for less-than-strong intenders only, uptake was 4.2% higher in the AR (84.6%) versus the HLOC group (80.4%) (95% CI for difference (2.0, 6.5)). The findings show that psychological concepts including AR and perceived disgust (ICK) are important factors in determining FOBT uptake. However, the AR intervention had no simple effect in the ITT analysis. It can be concluded that, in those with low intentions, exposure to AR may be required to increase FOBT uptake. The current controlled trials are presented at the website www.controlled-trials.com (number: ISRCTN74986452). PMID:26301484

  18. Anticipated regret to increase uptake of colorectal cancer screening (ARTICS): A randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    O'Carroll, Ronan E.; Chambers, Julie A.; Brownlee, Linda; Libby, Gillian; Steele, Robert J.C.

    2015-01-01

    Screening is important for early detection of colorectal cancer. Our aim was to determine whether a simple anticipated regret (AR) intervention could increase uptake of colorectal cancer screening. A randomised controlled trial of a simple, questionnaire-based AR intervention, delivered alongside existing pre-notification letters, was conducted. A total of 60,000 adults aged 50–74 years from the Scottish National Screening programme were randomised into the following groups: (1) no questionnaire (control), (2) Health Locus of Control questionnaire (HLOC) or (3) HLOC plus AR questionnaire. The primary outcome was return of the guaiac faecal occult blood test (FOBT). The secondary outcomes included intention to return test kit and perceived disgust (ICK). A total of 59,366 people were analysed as allocated (intention-to-treat (ITT)); no overall differences were seen between the treatment groups on FOBT uptake (control: 57.3%, HLOC: 56.9%, AR: 57.4%). In total, 13,645 (34.2%) individuals returned the questionnaires. Analysis of the secondary questionnaire measures showed that AR indirectly affected FOBT uptake via intention, whilst ICK directly affected FOBT uptake over and above intention. The effect of AR on FOBT uptake was also moderated by intention strength: for less-than-strong intenders only, uptake was 4.2% higher in the AR (84.6%) versus the HLOC group (80.4%) (95% CI for difference (2.0, 6.5)). The findings show that psychological concepts including AR and perceived disgust (ICK) are important factors in determining FOBT uptake. However, the AR intervention had no simple effect in the ITT analysis. It can be concluded that, in those with low intentions, exposure to AR may be required to increase FOBT uptake. The current controlled trials are presented at the website www.controlled-trials.com (number: ISRCTN74986452). PMID:26301484

  19. Improving outcomes of preschool language delay in the community: protocol for the Language for Learning randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Early language delay is a high-prevalence condition of concern to parents and professionals. It may result in lifelong deficits not only in language function, but also in social, emotional/behavioural, academic and economic well-being. Such delays can lead to considerable costs to the individual, the family and to society more widely. The Language for Learning trial tests a population-based intervention in 4 year olds with measured language delay, to determine (1) if it improves language and associated outcomes at ages 5 and 6 years and (2) its cost-effectiveness for families and the health care system. Methods/Design A large-scale randomised trial of a year-long intervention targeting preschoolers with language delay, nested within a well-documented, prospective, population-based cohort of 1464 children in Melbourne, Australia. All children received a 1.25-1.5 hour formal language assessment at their 4th birthday. The 200 children with expressive and/or receptive language scores more than 1.25 standard deviations below the mean were randomised into intervention or ‘usual care’ control arms. The 20-session intervention program comprises 18 one-hour home-based therapeutic sessions in three 6-week blocks, an outcome assessment, and a final feed-back/forward planning session. The therapy utilises a ‘step up-step down’ therapeutic approach depending on the child’s language profile, severity and progress, with standardised, manualised activities covering the four language development domains of: vocabulary and grammar; narrative skills; comprehension monitoring; and phonological awareness/pre-literacy skills. Blinded follow-up assessments at ages 5 and 6 years measure the primary outcome of receptive and expressive language, and secondary outcomes of vocabulary, narrative, and phonological skills. Discussion A key strength of this robust study is the implementation of a therapeutic framework that provides a standardised yet tailored approach for

  20. Effectiveness of group body psychotherapy for negative symptoms of schizophrenia: multicentre randomised controlled trial†

    PubMed Central

    Priebe, S.; Savill, M.; Wykes, T.; Bentall, R. P.; Reininghaus, U.; Lauber, C.; Bremner, S.; Eldridge, S.; Röhricht, F.

    2016-01-01

    Background Negative symptoms of schizophrenia have a severe impact on functional outcomes and treatment options are limited. Arts therapies are currently recommended but more evidence is required. Aims To assess body psychotherapy as a treatment for negative symptoms compared with an active control (trial registration: ISRCTN84216587). Method Schizophrenia out-patients were randomised into a 20-session body psychotherapy or Pilates group. The primary outcome was negative symptoms at end of treatment. Secondary outcomes included psychopathology, functional, social and treatment satisfaction outcomes at treatment end and 6-months later. Results In total, 275 participants were randomised. The adjusted difference in negative symptoms was 0.03 (95% CI −1.11 to 1.17), indicating no benefit from body psychotherapy. Small improvements in expressive deficits and movement disorder symptoms were detected in favour of body psychotherapy. No other outcomes were significantly different. Conclusions Body psychotherapy does not have a clinically relevant beneficial effect in the treatment of patients with negative symptoms of schizophrenia. PMID:27151073

  1. Macitentan for the treatment of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis: the randomised controlled MUSIC trial.

    PubMed

    Raghu, Ganesh; Million-Rousseau, Rachel; Morganti, Adele; Perchenet, Loyc; Behr, Juergen

    2013-12-01

    Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis is a progressive, fatal disease. This prospective, randomised, double-blind, multicentre, parallel-group, placebo-controlled phase II trial (NCT00903331) investigated the efficacy and safety of the endothelin receptor antagonist macitentan in idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. Eligible subjects were adults with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis of <3 years duration and a histological pattern of usual interstitial pneumonia on surgical lung biopsy. The primary objective was to demonstrate that macitentan (10 mg once daily) positively affected forced vital capacity versus placebo. Using a centralised system, 178 subjects were randomised (2:1) to macitentan (n=119) or placebo (n=59). The median change from baseline up to month 12 in forced vital capacity was -0.20 L in the macitentan arm and -0.20 L in the placebo arm. Overall, no differences between treatments were observed in pulmonary function tests or time to disease worsening or death. Median exposures to macitentan and placebo were 14.5 months and 15.0 months, respectively. Alanine and/or aspartate aminotransferase elevations over three times upper limit of normal arose in 3.4% of macitentan-treated subjects and 5.1% of placebo recipients. In conclusion, the primary objective was not met. Long-term exposure to macitentan was well tolerated with a similar, low incidence of elevated hepatic aminotransferases in each treatment group.

  2. The effect of 3% and 6% hypertonic saline in viral bronchiolitis: a randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Teunissen, Jasmijn; Hochs, Anne H J; Vaessen-Verberne, Anja; Boehmer, Annemie L M; Smeets, Carien C J M; Brackel, Hein; van Gent, René; Wesseling, Judith; Logtens-Stevens, Danielle; de Moor, Ronald; Rosias, Philippe P R; Potgieter, Steph; Faber, Marianne R; Hendriks, Han J E; Janssen-Heijnen, Maryska L G; Loza, Bettina F

    2014-10-01

    Bronchiolitis is a common disorder in young children that often results in hospitalisation. Except for a possible effect of nebulised hypertonic saline (sodium chloride), no evidence-based therapy is available. This study investigated the efficacy of nebulised 3% and 6% hypertonic saline compared with 0.9% hypertonic saline in children hospitalised with viral bronchiolitis. In this multicentre, double-blind, randomised, controlled trial, children hospitalised with acute viral bronchiolitis were randomised to receive either nebulised 3%, 6% hypertonic saline or 0.9% normal saline during their entire hospital stay. Salbutamol was added to counteract possible bronchial constriction. The primary endpoint was the length of hospital stay. Secondary outcomes were need for supplemental oxygen and tube feeding. From the 292 children included in the study (median age 3.4 months), 247 completed the study. The median length of hospital stay did not differ between the groups: 69 h (interquartile range 57), 70 h (IQR 69) and 53 h (IQR 52), for 3% (n=84) and 6% (n=83) hypertonic saline and 0.9% (n=80) normal saline, respectively, (p=0.29). The need for supplemental oxygen or tube feeding did not differ significantly. Adverse effects were similar in the three groups. Nebulisation with hypertonic saline (3% or 6% sodium chloride) although safe, did not reduce the length of stay in hospital, duration of supplemental oxygen or tube feeding in children hospitalised with moderate-to-severe viral bronchiolitis.

  3. Replicability of sight word training and phonics training in poor readers: a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Kohnen, S; Jones, K; Eve, P; Banales, E; Larsen, L; Castles, A

    2015-01-01

    Given the importance of effective treatments for children with reading impairment, paired with growing concern about the lack of scientific replication in psychological science, the aim of this study was to replicate a quasi-randomised trial of sight word and phonics training using a randomised controlled trial (RCT) design. One group of poor readers (N = 41) did 8 weeks of phonics training (i.e., phonological decoding) and then 8 weeks of sight word training (i.e., whole-word recognition). A second group did the reverse order of training. Sight word and phonics training each had a large and significant valid treatment effect on trained irregular words and word reading fluency. In addition, combined sight word and phonics training had a moderate and significant valid treatment effect on nonword reading accuracy and fluency. These findings demonstrate the reliability of both phonics and sight word training in treating poor readers in an era where the importance of scientific reliability is under close scrutiny. PMID:26019992

  4. Preovulatory uterine flushing with saline as a treatment for unexplained infertility: a randomised controlled trial protocol

    PubMed Central

    Dodin, Sylvie; Moore, Lynne; Bujold, Emmanuel; Lefebvre, Jessica; Bergeron, Marie-Ève

    2016-01-01

    Introduction In vitro fertilisation (IVF) is the treatment of choice for unexplained infertility. Preovulatory uterine flushing could reduce intrauterine debris and inflammatory factors preventing pregnancy and constitute an alternative to IVF. Our objective is to assess the efficacy of preovulatory uterine flushing with physiological saline for the treatment of unexplained infertility. Methods and analysis We will perform a randomised controlled trial based on consecutive women aged between 18 and 37 years consulting for unexplained infertility for at least 1 year. On the day of their luteinising hormone surge, 192 participants will be randomised in two equal groups to either receive 20 mL of physiological saline by an intrauterine catheter or 10 mL of saline intravaginally. We will assess relative risk of live birth (primary outcome), as well as pregnancy (secondary outcome) over one cycle of treatment. We will report the side effects, complications and acceptability of the intervention. Ethics and dissemination This project was approved by the Ethics committee of the Centre Hospitatlier Universitaire de Quebec (no 2015–1146). Uterine flushing is usually well tolerated by women and would constitute a simple, affordable and minimally invasive treatment for unexplained infertility. We plan to communicate the results of the review by presenting research abstracts at conferences and by publishing the results in a peer-reviewed journal. Trial registration number NCT02539290; Pre-results. PMID:26739737

  5. Preventing Weight Gain in Women in Rural Communities: A Cluster Randomised Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    Lombard, Catherine; Harrison, Cheryce; Kozica, Samantha; Zoungas, Sophia; Ranasinha, Sanjeeva; Teede, Helena

    2016-01-01

    Background Obesity is reaching epidemic proportions in both developed and developing countries. Even modest weight gain increases the risk for chronic illness, yet evidence-based interventions to prevent weight gain are rare. This trial will determine if a simple low-intensity intervention can prevent weight gain in women compared to general health information. Methods and Findings We conducted a 1-yr pragmatic, cluster randomised controlled trial in 41 Australian towns (clusters) randomised using a computer-generated randomisation list for intervention (n = 21) or control (n = 20). Women aged 18 to 50 yr were recruited from the general population to receive a 1-yr self-management lifestyle intervention (HeLP-her) consisting of one group session, monthly SMS text messages, one phone coaching session, and a program manual, or to a control group receiving one general women’s health education session. From October 2012 to April 2014 we studied 649 women, mean age 39.6 yr (+/− SD 6.7) and BMI of 28.8 kg/m2 (+/− SD 6.9) with the primary outcome weight change between groups at 1 yr. The mean change in the control was +0.44 kg (95% CI −0.09 to 0.97) and in the intervention group −0.48kg (95% CI −0.99 to 0.03) with an unadjusted between group difference of −0.92 kg (95% CI −1.67 to −0.16) or −0.87 kg (95% CI −1.62 to −0.13) adjusted for baseline values and clustering. Secondary outcomes included improved diet quality and greater self-management behaviours. The intervention appeared to be equally efficacious across all age, BMI, income, and education subgroups. Loss to follow-up included 23.8% in the intervention group and 21.8% in the control group and was within the anticipated range. Limitations include lack of sensitive tools to measure the small changes to energy intake and physical activity. Those who gained weight may have been less inclined to return for 1 yr weight measures. Conclusions A low intensity lifestyle program can prevent the

  6. School-based intervention for the prevention of HPV among adolescents: a cluster randomised controlled study

    PubMed Central

    Grandahl, Maria; Rosenblad, Andreas; Stenhammar, Christina; Tydén, Tanja; Westerling, Ragnar; Larsson, Margareta; Oscarsson, Marie; Andrae, Bengt; Dalianis, Tina; Nevéus, Tryggve

    2016-01-01

    Objective To improve primary prevention of human papillomavirus (HPV) infection by promoting vaccination and increased condom use among upper secondary school students. Design Cluster randomised controlled trial. Setting 18 upper secondary schools in Sweden. Participants Schools were first randomised to the intervention or the control group, after which individual classes were randomised so as to be included or not. Of the 832 students aged 16 years invited to participate during the regular individual health interview with the school nurse, 751 (90.2%) agreed to participate and 741 (89.1%) students completed the study. Interventions The intervention was based on the Health Belief Model (HBM). According to HBM, a person's health behaviour can be explained by individual beliefs regarding health actions. School nurses delivered 30 min face-to-face structured information about HPV, including cancer risks and HPV prevention, by propagating condom use and HPV vaccination. Students in the intervention and the control groups completed questionnaires at baseline and after 3 months. Main outcome measures Intention to use condom with a new partner and beliefs about primary prevention of HPV, and also specifically vaccination status and increased condom use. Results All statistical analyses were performed at the individual level. The intervention had a significant effect on the intention to use condom (p=0.004). There was also a significant effect on HBM total score (p=0.003), with a 2.559 points higher score for the intervention group compared to the controls. The influence on the HBM parameters susceptibility and severity was also significant (p<0.001 for both variables). The intervention also influenced behaviour: girls in the intervention group chose to have themselves vaccinated to a significantly higher degree than the controls (p=0.02). No harms were reported. Conclusions The school-based intervention had favourable effects on the beliefs about primary prevention

  7. Parametric robust control and system identification: Unified approach

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Keel, Leehyun

    1994-01-01

    Despite significant advancement in the area of robust parametric control, the problem of synthesizing such a controller is still a wide open problem. Thus, we attempt to give a solution to this important problem. Our approach captures the parametric uncertainty as an H(sub infinity) unstructured uncertainty so that H(sub infinity) synthesis techniques are applicable. Although the techniques cannot cope with the exact parametric uncertainty, they give a reasonable guideline to model the unstructured uncertainty that contains the parametric uncertainty. An additional loop shaping technique is also introduced to relax its conservatism.

  8. Model validation - A connection between robust control and identification

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, Roy S.; Doyle, John C.

    1992-01-01

    The gap between the models used in control synthesis and those obtained from identification experiments is considered by investigating the connection between uncertain models and data. The model validation problem addressed is: given experimental data and a model with both additive noise and norm-bounded perturbations, is it possible that the model could produce the observed input-output data? This problem is studied for the standard H-infinity/mu framework models. A necessary condition for such a model to describe an experimental datum is obtained. For a large class of models in the robust control framework, this condition is computable as the solution of a quadratic optimization problem.

  9. Patient-controlled oral analgesia versus nurse-controlled parenteral analgesia after caesarean section: a randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Bonnal, A; Dehon, A; Nagot, N; Macioce, V; Nogue, E; Morau, E

    2016-05-01

    We assessed the effectiveness of early patient-controlled oral analgesia compared with parenteral analgesia in a randomised controlled non-inferiority trial of women undergoing elective caesarean section under regional anaesthesia. Seventy-seven women received multimodal paracetamol, ketoprofen and morphine analgesia. The woman having patient-controlled oral analgesia were administered four pillboxes on the postnatal ward containing tablets and instructions for self-medication, the first at 7 h after the spinal injection and then three more at 12-hourly intervals. Pain at rest and on movement was evaluated using an 11-point verbal rating scale at 2 h and then at 6-hourly intervals for 48 h. The pre-defined non-inferiority limit for the difference in mean pain scores (patient-controlled oral analgesia minus parenteral) was one. The one-sided 95% CI of the difference in mean pain scores was significantly lower than one at all time-points at rest and on movement, demonstrating non-inferiority of patient-controlled oral analgesia. More women used morphine in the patient-controlled oral analgesia group (22 (58%)) than in the parenteral group (9 (23%); p = 0.002). The median (IQR [range]) number of morphine doses in the patient-controlled oral analgesia group was 2 (1-3 [1-7]) compared with 1 (1-1 [1-2]); p = 0.006) in the parenteral group. Minor drug errors or omissions were identified in five (13%) women receiving patient-controlled oral analgesia. Pruritus was more frequent in the patient-controlled oral analgesia group (14 (37%) vs 6 (15%) respectively; p = 0.03), but no differences were noted for other adverse events and maternal satisfaction. After elective caesarean section, early patient-controlled oral analgesia is non-inferior to standard parenteral analgesia for pain management, and can be one of the steps of an enhanced recovery process. PMID:26931110

  10. Linear, multivariable robust control with a mu perspective

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Packard, Andy; Doyle, John; Balas, Gary

    1993-01-01

    The structured singular value is a linear algebra tool developed to study a particular class of matrix perturbation problems arising in robust feedback control of multivariable systems. These perturbations are called linear fractional, and are a natural way to model many types of uncertainty in linear systems, including state-space parameter uncertainty, multiplicative and additive unmodeled dynamics uncertainty, and coprime factor and gap metric uncertainty. The structured singular value theory provides a natural extension of classical SISO robustness measures and concepts to MIMO systems. The structured singular value analysis, coupled with approximate synthesis methods, make it possible to study the tradeoff between performance and uncertainty that occurs in all feedback systems. In MIMO systems, the complexity of the spatial interactions in the loop gains make it difficult to heuristically quantify the tradeoffs that must occur. This paper examines the role played by the structured singular value (and its computable bounds) in answering these questions, as well as its role in the general robust, multivariable control analysis and design problem.

  11. A robust decentralized load frequency controller for interconnected power systems.

    PubMed

    Dong, Lili; Zhang, Yao; Gao, Zhiqiang

    2012-05-01

    A novel design of a robust decentralized load frequency control (LFC) algorithm is proposed for an inter-connected three-area power system, for the purpose of regulating area control error (ACE) in the presence of system uncertainties and external disturbances. The design is based on the concept of active disturbance rejection control (ADRC). Estimating and mitigating the total effect of various uncertainties in real time, ADRC is particularly effective against a wide range of parameter variations, model uncertainties, and large disturbances. Furthermore, with only two tuning parameters, the controller provides a simple and easy-to-use solution to complex engineering problems in practice. Here, an ADRC-based LFC solution is developed for systems with turbines of various types, such as non-reheat, reheat, and hydraulic. The simulation results verified the effectiveness of the ADRC, in comparison with an existing PI-type controller tuned via genetic algorithm linear matrix inequalities (GALMIs). The comparison results show the superiority of the proposed solution. Moreover, the stability and robustness of the closed-loop system is studied using frequency-domain analysis. PMID:22424605

  12. Music during interventional radiological procedures, effect on sedation, pain and anxiety: a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Kulkarni, S; Johnson, P C D; Kettles, S; Kasthuri, R S

    2012-01-01

    Objective : To assess the effects of playing patient-selected music during interventional procedures on (1) the doses of sedation and analgesia and (2) anxiety levels. Methods : Patients undergoing interventional radiological procedures were randomised to either the intervention (music) or the control (no music) group. Patients in the intervention group had music of their choice played via headphones during the procedure. The primary outcomes were reductions in the doses of drugs for sedation (midazolam) and analgesia (fentanyl). Anxiety levels were assessed both before and after the procedure using the validated State Anxiety Inventory. Mean pulse rate and average of mean blood pressures were also recorded before and during the procedures as surrogate indicators of anxiety levels. Results : 100 patients were randomised in a 1:1 ratio. There were 58 males and 42 females, with a mean age of 58 years. Sedation was required in 21 (42%) patients in the music group compared with 30 (60%) patients in the control group (p=0.046). The mean [standard deviation (SD)] midazolam dose was 2.1 mg (2.3 mg) in the control group and 1.3 mg (2.2 mg) in the music group (p=0.027). The mean (SD) fentanyl dose was 29 mg (40 mg) in the control group and 18 mg (34 mg) in the music group (p=0.055). There was no significant effect of music on the change from baseline in anxiety levels (p=0.74), pulse rate (p=0.56) or blood pressure (p=0.34). Conclusion : Sedation requirements are significantly reduced by playing self-selected music to the patient during interventional radiology procedures. By lowering sedation during interventional radiology, music makes the procedure safer. It also contributes favourably to the overall patient experience. PMID:22422386

  13. Two phase randomised controlled clinical trial of postoperative oral dietary supplements in surgical patients.

    PubMed Central

    Keele, A M; Bray, M J; Emery, P W; Duncan, H D; Silk, D B

    1997-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Previous work has shown that the administration of oral dietary supplements to patients who have undergone gastrointestinal surgery results in clinically significant short term benefits. AIMS: This study aimed firstly to re-evaluate these short term effects, and secondly to establish whether there are any long term benefits. SUBJECTS: One hundred patients admitted for elective moderate or major gastrointestinal surgery. METHODS: In the inpatient phase, patients were randomised to receive a normal ward diet postoperatively, or the same diet supplemented with an oral dietary supplement. In the outpatient phase, patients were further randomised to receive their home diet, or their home diet supplemented with the oral dietary supplement for four months. RESULTS: During the inpatient phase, patients treated with oral supplements had a significantly improved nutritional intake and lost less weight (2.2, 95% confidence interval (95% CI) 0.9 kg) compared with control patients (4.2 (0.78) kg, p < 0.001). Supplemented patients maintained their hand grip strength whereas control patients showed a significant reduction in grip strength (p < 0.01). Subjective levels of fatigue increased significantly above preoperative levels in control patients (p < 0.01) but not in the supplemented group. Twelve patients in the control group developed complications compared with four in the supplemented group (p < 0.05). In the outpatient phase, supplemented patients had improved nutrient intakes but there were no significant differences in indices of nutritional status or wellbeing between the groups. CONCLUSIONS: The prescription of oral dietary supplements to patients who have undergone gastrointestinal surgery results in clinically significant benefits. These benefits, however, are restricted to the inpatient phase. PMID:9135531

  14. Outcomes of a randomised controlled trial of a complex genetic counselling intervention to improve family communication.

    PubMed

    Hodgson, Jan; Metcalfe, Sylvia; Gaff, Clara; Donath, Susan; Delatycki, Martin B; Winship, Ingrid; Skene, Loane; Aitken, MaryAnne; Halliday, Jane

    2016-03-01

    When an inherited genetic condition is diagnosed in an individual it has implications for other family members. Privacy legislation and ethical considerations can restrict health professionals from communicating directly with other family members, and so it is frequently the responsibility of the first person in a family to receive the diagnosis (the proband) to share this news. Communication of genetic information is challenging and many at-risk family members remain unaware of important information that may be relevant to their or their children's health. We conducted a randomised controlled trial in six public hospitals to assess whether a specifically designed telephone counselling intervention improved family communication about a new genetic diagnosis. Ninety-five probands/parents of probands were recruited from genetics clinics and randomised to the intervention or control group. The primary outcome measure was the difference between the proportion of at-risk relatives who contacted genetics services for information and/or genetic testing. Audit of the family genetic file after 18 months revealed that 25.6% of intervention group relatives compared with 20.9% of control group relatives made contact with genetic services (adjusted odds ratio (OR) 1.30, 95% confidence interval 0.70-2.42, P=0.40). Although no major difference was detected overall between the intervention and control groups, there was more contact in the intervention group where the genetic condition conferred a high risk to offspring (adjusted OR 24.0, 95% confidence interval 3.4-168.5, P=0.001). The increasing sophistication and scope of genetic testing makes it imperative for health professionals to consider additional ways of supporting families in communicating genetic information.

  15. Outcomes of a randomised controlled trial of a complex genetic counselling intervention to improve family communication.

    PubMed

    Hodgson, Jan; Metcalfe, Sylvia; Gaff, Clara; Donath, Susan; Delatycki, Martin B; Winship, Ingrid; Skene, Loane; Aitken, MaryAnne; Halliday, Jane

    2016-03-01

    When an inherited genetic condition is diagnosed in an individual it has implications for other family members. Privacy legislation and ethical considerations can restrict health professionals from communicating directly with other family members, and so it is frequently the responsibility of the first person in a family to receive the diagnosis (the proband) to share this news. Communication of genetic information is challenging and many at-risk family members remain unaware of important information that may be relevant to their or their children's health. We conducted a randomised controlled trial in six public hospitals to assess whether a specifically designed telephone counselling intervention improved family communication about a new genetic diagnosis. Ninety-five probands/parents of probands were recruited from genetics clinics and randomised to the intervention or control group. The primary outcome measure was the difference between the proportion of at-risk relatives who contacted genetics services for information and/or genetic testing. Audit of the family genetic file after 18 months revealed that 25.6% of intervention group relatives compared with 20.9% of control group relatives made contact with genetic services (adjusted odds ratio (OR) 1.30, 95% confidence interval 0.70-2.42, P=0.40). Although no major difference was detected overall between the intervention and control groups, there was more contact in the intervention group where the genetic condition conferred a high risk to offspring (adjusted OR 24.0, 95% confidence interval 3.4-168.5, P=0.001). The increasing sophistication and scope of genetic testing makes it imperative for health professionals to consider additional ways of supporting families in communicating genetic information. PMID:26130486

  16. Are Prenatal Ultrasound Scans Associated with the Autism Phenotype? Follow-Up of a Randomised Controlled Trial

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stoch, Yonit K.; Williams, Cori J.; Granich, Joanna; Hunt, Anna M.; Landau, Lou I.; Newnham, John P.; Whitehouse, Andrew J. O.

    2012-01-01

    An existing randomised controlled trial was used to investigate whether multiple ultrasound scans may be associated with the autism phenotype. From 2,834 single pregnancies, 1,415 were selected at random to receive ultrasound imaging and continuous wave Doppler flow studies at five points throughout pregnancy (Intensive) and 1,419 to receive a…

  17. A Randomised Controlled Trial to Determine the Effectiveness of an Early Psychological Intervention with Children Involved in Road Traffic Accidents

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stallard, Paul; Velleman, Richard; Salter, Emma; Howse, Imogen; Yule, William; Taylor, Gordon

    2006-01-01

    Objective: To determine whether an early intervention using a psychological debriefing format is effective in preventing psychological distress in child road traffic accident survivors. Design: Randomised controlled trial. Setting: Accident and Emergency Department, Royal United Hospital, Bath. Subjects: 158 children aged 7-18. Follow-up…

  18. "Every Child Counts": Testing Policy Effectiveness Using a Randomised Controlled Trial, Designed, Conducted and Reported to CONSORT Standards

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Torgerson, Carole; Wiggins, Andy; Torgerson, David; Ainsworth, Hannah; Hewitt, Catherine

    2013-01-01

    We report a randomised controlled trial evaluation of an intensive one-to-one numeracy programme--"Numbers Count"--which formed part of the previous government's numeracy policy intervention--"Every Child Counts." We rigorously designed and conducted the trial to CONSORT guidelines. We used a pragmatic waiting list design to…

  19. A Randomised Controlled Trial Using Mobile Advertising to Promote Safer Sex and Sun Safety to Young People

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gold, J.; Aitken, C. K.; Dixon, H. G.; Lim, M. S. C.; Gouillou, M.; Spelman, T.; Wakefield, M.; Hellard, M. E.

    2011-01-01

    Mobile phone text messages (SMS) are a promising method of health promotion, but a simple and low cost way to obtain phone numbers is required to reach a wide population. We conducted a randomised controlled trial with simultaneous brief interventions to (i) evaluate effectiveness of messages related to safer sex and sun safety and (ii) pilot the…

  20. All-Wales licensed premises intervention (AWLPI): a randomised controlled trial to reduce alcohol-related violence

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Alcohol-related violence in and in the vicinity of licensed premises continues to place a considerable burden on the United Kingdom’s (UK) health services. Robust interventions targeted at licensed premises are therefore required to reduce the costs of alcohol-related harm. Previous evaluations of interventions in licensed premises have a number of methodological limitations and none have been conducted in the UK. The aim of the trial was to determine the effectiveness of the Safety Management in Licensed Environments intervention designed to reduce alcohol-related violence in licensed premises, delivered by Environmental Health Officers, under their statutory authority to intervene in cases of violence in the workplace. Methods/Design A national randomised controlled trial, with licensed premises as the unit of allocation. Premises were identified from all 22 Local Authorities in Wales. Eligible premises were those with identifiable violent incidents on premises, using police recorded violence data. Premises were allocated to intervention or control by optimally balancing by Environmental Health Officer capacity in each Local Authority, number of violent incidents in the 12 months leading up to the start of the project and opening hours. The primary outcome measure is the difference in frequency of violence between intervention and control premises over a 12 month follow-up period, based on a recurrent event model. The trial incorporates an embedded process evaluation to assess intervention implementation, fidelity, reach and reception, and to interpret outcome effects, as well as investigate its economic impact. Discussion The results of the trial will be applicable to all statutory authorities directly involved with managing violence in the night time economy and will provide the first formal test of Health and Safety policy in this environment. If successful, opportunities for replication and generalisation will be considered. Trial registration

  1. Parent-focused treatment for adolescent anorexia nervosa: a study protocol of a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Family-based treatment is an efficacious outpatient intervention for medically stable adolescents with anorexia nervosa. Previous research suggests family-based treatment may be more effective for some families when parents and adolescents attend separate therapy sessions compared to conjoint sessions. Our service developed a novel separated model of family-based treatment, parent-focused treatment, and is undertaking a randomised controlled trial to compare parent-focused treatment to conjoint family-based treatment. Methods/Design This randomised controlled trial will recruit 100 adolescents aged 12–18 years with DSM-IV anorexia nervosa or eating disorder not otherwise specified (anorexia nervosa type). The trial commenced in 2010 and is expected to be completed in 2015. Participants are recruited from the Royal Children’s Hospital Eating Disorders Program, Melbourne, Australia. Following a multidisciplinary intake assessment, eligible families who provide written informed consent are randomly allocated to either parent-focused treatment or conjoint family-based treatment. In parent-focused treatment, the adolescent sees a clinical nurse consultant and the parents see a trained mental health clinician. In conjoint family-based treatment, the whole family attends sessions with the mental health clinician. Both groups receive 18 treatment sessions over 6 months and regular medical monitoring by a paediatrician. The primary outcome is remission at end of treatment and 6 and 12 month follow up, with remission defined as being ≥ 95% expected body weight and having an eating disorder symptom score within one standard deviation of community norms. The secondary outcomes include partial remission and changes in eating pathology, depressive symptoms and self-esteem. Moderating and mediating factors will also be explored. Discussion This will be first randomised controlled trial of a parent-focused model of family-based treatment of adolescent

  2. Acupuncture and Counselling for Depression in Primary Care: A Randomised Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    MacPherson, Hugh; Richmond, Stewart; Bland, Martin; Brealey, Stephen; Gabe, Rhian; Hopton, Ann; Keding, Ada; Lansdown, Harriet; Perren, Sara; Sculpher, Mark; Spackman, Eldon; Torgerson, David; Watt, Ian

    2013-01-01

    Background Depression is a significant cause of morbidity. Many patients have communicated an interest in non-pharmacological therapies to their general practitioners. Systematic reviews of acupuncture and counselling for depression in primary care have identified limited evidence. The aim of this study was to evaluate acupuncture versus usual care and counselling versus usual care for patients who continue to experience depression in primary care. Methods and Findings In a randomised controlled trial, 755 patients with depression (Beck Depression Inventory BDI-II score ≥20) were recruited from 27 primary care practices in the North of England. Patients were randomised to one of three arms using a ratio of 2∶2∶1 to acupuncture (302), counselling (302), and usual care alone (151). The primary outcome was the difference in mean Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9) scores at 3 months with secondary analyses over 12 months follow-up. Analysis was by intention-to-treat. PHQ-9 data were available for 614 patients at 3 months and 572 patients at 12 months. Patients attended a mean of ten sessions for acupuncture and nine sessions for counselling. Compared to usual care, there was a statistically significant reduction in mean PHQ-9 depression scores at 3 months for acupuncture (−2.46, 95% CI −3.72 to −1.21) and counselling (−1.73, 95% CI −3.00 to −0.45), and over 12 months for acupuncture (−1.55, 95% CI −2.41 to −0.70) and counselling (−1.50, 95% CI −2.43 to −0.58). Differences between acupuncture and counselling were not significant. In terms of limitations, the trial was not designed to separate out specific from non-specific effects. No serious treatment-related adverse events were reported. Conclusions In this randomised controlled trial of acupuncture and counselling for patients presenting with depression, after having consulted their general practitioner in primary care, both interventions were associated with significantly reduced

  3. Assessment of impact of information booklets on use of healthcare services: randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Heaney, David; Wyke, Sally; Wilson, Philip; Elton, Rob; Rutledge, Philip

    2001-01-01

    Objectives To investigate the effect of patient information booklets on overall use of health services, on particular types of use, and on possible interactions between use, deprivation category of the area in which respondents live, and age. To investigate the possibility of a differential effect on health service use between two information booklets. Design Randomised controlled trial of two patient information booklets (covering the management and treatment of minor illness). Setting 20 general practices in Lothian, Scotland. Participants Random sample of patients from the community health index (n=4878) and of those contacting out of hours services (n=4530) in the previous 12 months in each of the study general practices. Intervention Booklets were posted to participants in intervention groups (3288 were sent What Should I Do?; 3127 were sent Health Care Manual). Patients randomised to control group (2993) did not receive a booklet. Main outcome measures Use of health services audited from patients' general practice notes in 12 months after receipt of booklet. Results Receipt of either booklet had no significant effect on health service use compared with a control group. However, nine out of ten matched practices allocated to receive Health Care Manual had reduced consultation rates compared with matched practices allocated to What Should I Do? Conclusion Widespread distribution of information booklets about the management of minor illness is unlikely to reduce demand for health services. What is already known on this topicOne view of help seeking behaviour is that increasing demand for health services is associated with a lack of knowledge in the self management of minor illnessAn alternative view sees individuals responding reflexively to symptoms on the basis of information and advice from a wide range of sources and using their own experiencesWhat this study addsThe lack of effect on health service use indicates that widespread postal distribution of

  4. Exploratory cluster randomised controlled trial of shared care development for long-term mental illness.

    PubMed Central

    Byng, Richard; Jones, Roger; Leese, Morven; Hamilton, Blake; McCrone, Paul; Craig, Tom

    2004-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Primary care clinicians have a considerable amount of contact with patients suffering from long-term mental illness. The United Kingdom's National Health Service now requires general practices to contribute more systematically to care for this group of patients. AIMS: To determine the effects of Mental Health Link, a facilitation-based quality improvement programme designed to improve communication between the teams and systems of care within general practice. Design of study: Exploratory cluster randomised controlled trial. SETTING: Twenty-three urban general practices and associated community mental health teams. METHOD: Practices were randomised to service development as usual or to the Mental Health Link programme. Questionnaires and an audit of notes assessed 335 patients' satisfaction, unmet need, mental health status, processes of mental and physical care, and general practitioners' satisfaction with services and beliefs about service development. Service use and intervention costs were also measured. RESULTS: There were no significant differences in patients' perception of their unmet need, satisfaction or general health. Intervention patients had fewer psychiatric relapses than control patients (mean = 0.39 versus 0.71, respectively, P = 0.02) but there were no differences in documented processes of care. Intervention practitioners were more satisfied and services improved significantly for intervention practices. There was an additional mean direct cost of pound 63 per patient with long-term mental illness for the intervention compared with the control. CONCLUSION: Significant differences were seen in relapse rates and practitioner satisfaction. Improvements in service development did not translate into documented improvements in care. This could be explained by the intervention working via the improvements in informal shared care developed through better link working. This type of facilitated intervention tailored to context has the potential

  5. Effectiveness of ear syringing in general practice: a randomised controlled trial and patients' experiences.

    PubMed Central

    Memel, David; Langley, Carole; Watkins, Chris; Laue, Barbara; Birchall, Martin; Bachmann, Max

    2002-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Ear syringing is a common procedure performed for a variety of symptoms in primary care. Reports of its effectiveness vary considerably and no randomised controlled trials (RCTs) have been performed. AIM: To estimate the effect of ear syringing on hearing thresholds and on symptoms leading to ear syringing in general practice. DESIGN OF STUDY: Randomised single-blind controlled trial. Before-and-after self-assessments of symptoms. SETTING: Patients from three general practices in the Bristol area attending twice-weekly clinics dedicated to ear syringing over a 12-week period. METHOD: Patients were randomly assigned to have their hearing tested before and after ear syringing, or twice before ear syringing. Changes in hearing threshold were measured by pure tone audiometry (PTA). All patients completed sef-assessment forms of symptoms using Likert scales before, and one week after, ear syringing. RESULTS: Hearing threshold improved by 10 dB or more in 34% (95% confidence interval [CI] = 21% to 47%) of the intervention group and 1.6% of control group (number needed to treat = 3.1, 95% CI = 2.2 to 5.2, P<0.001). The levels of improvement in the intervention group ranged between 15 dB and 36 dB. The symptoms that most commonly improved included hearing on the phone, pain, a feeling of blocked ears, and hearing one-to-one. There was a strong relationship between the change thresholds, as measure using PTA, and self-reports of hearing improvement. Secondary analysis was unable to identify predictors of objectively measured improvement. CONCLUSION: Ear syringing improved hearing threshold in a substantial proportion of patients. An even larger proportion reported an improvement in symptoms. It was not possible to predict which patients would benefit. PMID:12434959

  6. Recruitment issues when primary care population clusters are used in randomised controlled clinical trials: climbing mountains or pushing boulders uphill?

    PubMed

    Hoddinott, Pat; Britten, Jane; Harrild, Kirsten; Godden, David J

    2007-05-01

    Cluster randomised controlled trials for health promotion, education, public health or organisational change interventions are becoming increasingly common to inform evidence-based policy. However, there is little published methodological evidence on recruitment strategies for primary care population clusters. In this paper, we discuss how choosing which population cluster to randomise can impact on the practicalities of recruitment in primary care. We describe strategies developed through our experiences of recruiting primary care organisations to participate in a national randomised controlled trial of a policy to provide community breastfeeding groups for pregnant and breastfeeding mothers, the BIG (Breastfeeding in Groups) trial. We propose an iterative qualitative approach to recruitment; collecting data generated through the recruitment process, identifying themes and using the constant comparative method of analysis. This can assist in developing successful recruitment strategies and contrasts with the standardised approach commonly used when recruiting individuals to participate in randomised controlled trials. Recruiting primary care population clusters to participate in trials is currently an uphill battle in Britain. It is a complex process, which can benefit from applying qualitative methods to inform trial design and recruitment strategy. Recruitment could be facilitated if health service managers were committed to supporting peer reviewed, funded and ethics committee approved research at national level.

  7. Telemonitoring based service redesign for the management of uncontrolled hypertension: multicentre randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Hanley, Janet; Wild, Sarah; Pagliari, Claudia; Paterson, Mary; Lewis, Steff; Sheikh, Aziz; Krishan, Ashma; Stoddart, Andrew; Padfield, Paul

    2013-01-01

    Objective To determine if an intervention consisting of telemonitoring and supervision by usual primary care clinicians of home self measured blood pressure and optional patient decision support leads to clinically important reductions in daytime systolic and diastolic ambulatory blood pressure in patients with uncontrolled blood pressure. Design Multicentre randomised controlled trial. Setting 20 primary care practices in south east Scotland. Participants 401 people aged 29-95 years with uncontrolled blood pressure (mean daytime ambulatory measurement ≥135/85 mm Hg but ≤210/135 mm Hg). Intervention Self measurement and transmission of blood pressure readings to a secure website for review by the attending nurse or doctor and participant, with optional automated patient decision support by text or email for six months. Main outcome measures Blinded assessment of mean daytime systolic ambulatory blood pressure six months after randomisation. Results 200 participants were randomised to the intervention and 201 to usual care; primary outcome data were available for 90% of participants (182 and 177, respectively). The mean difference in daytime systolic ambulatory blood pressure adjusted for baseline and minimisation factors between intervention and usual care was 4.3 mm Hg (95% confidence interval 2.0 to 6.5; P=0.0002) and for daytime diastolic ambulatory blood pressure was 2.3 mm Hg (0.9 to 3.6; P=0.001), with higher values in the usual care group. The intervention was associated with a mean increase of one general practitioner (95% confidence interval 0.5 to 1.6; P=0.0002) and 0.6 (0.1 to 1.0; P=0.01) practice nurse consultations during the course of the study. Conclusions Supported self monitoring by telemonitoring is an effective method for achieving clinically important reductions in blood pressure in patients with uncontrolled hypertension in primary care settings. However, it was associated with increase in use of National Health Service resources. Further

  8. Methods to improve recruitment to randomised controlled trials: Cochrane systematic review and meta-analysis

    PubMed Central

    Treweek, Shaun; Lockhart, Pauline; Pitkethly, Marie; Cook, Jonathan A; Kjeldstrøm, Monica; Johansen, Marit; Taskila, Taina K; Sullivan, Frank M; Wilson, Sue; Jackson, Catherine; Jones, Ritu; Mitchell, Elizabeth D

    2013-01-01

    This review is an abridged version of a Cochrane Review previously published in the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2010, Issue 4, Art. No.: MR000013 DOI: 10.1002/14651858.MR000013.pub5 (see www.thecochranelibrary.com for information). Cochrane Reviews are regularly updated as new evidence emerges and in response to feedback, and Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews should be consulted for the most recent version of the review. Objective To identify interventions designed to improve recruitment to randomised controlled trials, and to quantify their effect on trial participation. Design Systematic review. Data sources The Cochrane Methodology Review Group Specialised Register in the Cochrane Library, MEDLINE, EMBASE, ERIC, Science Citation Index, Social Sciences Citation Index, C2-SPECTR, the National Research Register and PubMed. Most searches were undertaken up to 2010; no language restrictions were applied. Study selection Randomised and quasi-randomised controlled trials, including those recruiting to hypothetical studies. Studies on retention strategies, examining ways to increase questionnaire response or evaluating the use of incentives for clinicians were excluded. The study population included any potential trial participant (eg, patient, clinician and member of the public), or individual or group of individuals responsible for trial recruitment (eg, clinicians, researchers and recruitment sites). Two authors independently screened identified studies for eligibility. Results 45 trials with over 43 000 participants were included. Some interventions were effective in increasing recruitment: telephone reminders to non-respondents (risk ratio (RR) 1.66, 95% CI 1.03 to 2.46; two studies, 1058 participants), use of opt-out rather than opt-in procedures for contacting potential participants (RR 1.39, 95% CI 1.06 to 1.84; one study, 152 participants) and open designs where participants know which treatment they are receiving in the trial (RR 1.22, 95

  9. Recruiting pregnant smokers for a placebo-randomised controlled trial of nicotine replacement therapy

    PubMed Central

    Coleman, Tim; Antoniak, Marilyn; Britton, John; Thornton, Jim; Lewis, Sarah; Watts, Kim

    2004-01-01

    Background Smoking in pregnancy is a public health problem and effective methods for reducing this are required. Although nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) is effective for smoking cessation in non-pregnant people, there is no direct evidence concerning its effectiveness in pregnancy. Despite this, clinical guidelines recommend the cautious use of NRT during pregnancy. Randomised controlled trials are needed to determine the safety and efficacy of NRT when used by pregnant women for smoking cessation, but the feasibility of recruiting women to such trials is unknown. Consequently, in this study we aimed to determine i) the feasibility of recruiting women to a RCT of NRT in pregnancy as they attend hospital antenatal ultrasound examinations, ii) the proportion of such women who are eligible for and interested in trial enrolment and iii) research staff perceptions of how one method of trial recruitment could be improved. Methods During a one month period, all women attending for antenatal ultrasound examination in an English teaching hospital were asked to complete a questionnaire which determined their eligibility to enrol in a proposed placebo controlled randomised trial investigating the effectiveness of NRT in pregnancy. Women who were eligible to participate were asked whether they would do so and those who accepted enrolment were offered an appointment with a smoking cessation advisor. Results Over 99% (851/858) of women agreed to complete a questionnaire about smoking habits whilst waiting for ultrasound examinations. 10.3% (88/851) of women attending for antenatal ultrasound fitted eligibility criteria for a proposed RCT of NRT in pregnancy, but only 3.6% [(31/851), 95% CI, 2.4 to 4.9%] indicated on the questionnaire that they would like to take part in a study involving randomisation to placebo or active patches. Researchers offered trial enrolment to 26 of these 31 women and 96% (25) accepted. Staff recruiting women believed that trial recruitment would be

  10. Improving physical health and reducing substance use in psychosis – randomised control trial (IMPACT RCT): study protocol for a cluster randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Cardiovascular morbidity and mortality is increased in individuals with severe mental illnesses. We set out to establish a multicentre, two arm, parallel cluster randomized controlled trial (RCT) of a health promotion intervention (HPI), IMPACT Therapy. The patient-tailored IMPACT Therapy aims to target one or more health behaviours from a pre-defined list that includes cannabis use; alcohol use; other substance use; cigarette smoking; exercise; diet and diabetic control, prioritising those identified as problematic by the patient, taking a motivational interviewing and CBT approach. Methods Impact therapy will be delivered by care coordinators in the community to the treatment group and will be compared to treatment as usual (TAU). The main hypothesis is that the addition of IMPACT Therapy (HPI) to TAU will be more effective than TAU alone in improving patients’ quality of life as measured by the Short Form-36, including mental health and physical health subscales on completion of the intervention at 12 months post randomisation. A subsidiary hypothesis will be that addition of IMPACT Therapy (HPI) will be more cost-effective than TAU alone in improving health in people with SMI 12 months from baseline. The IMPACT therapy patient groups’ improvement in quality of life, as well as its cost effectiveness, is hypothesised to be maintained at 15 months. Outcomes will be analyzed on an intention-to-treat (ITT) basis. Discussion The results of the trial will provide information about the effectiveness of the IMPACT therapy programme in supporting community mental health teams to address physical comorbidity in severe mental illness. Trial registration ISRCTN58667926. PMID:24131496

  11. Robust observer-based adaptive fuzzy sliding mode controller

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oveisi, Atta; Nestorović, Tamara

    2016-08-01

    In this paper, a new observer-based adaptive fuzzy integral sliding mode controller is proposed based on the Lyapunov stability theorem. The plant is subjected to a square-integrable disturbance and is assumed to have mismatch uncertainties both in state- and input-matrices. Based on the classical sliding mode controller, the equivalent control effort is obtained to satisfy the sufficient requirement of sliding mode controller and then the control law is modified to guarantee the reachability of the system trajectory to the sliding manifold. In order to relax the norm-bounded constrains on the control law and solve the chattering problem of sliding mode controller, a fuzzy logic inference mechanism is combined with the controller. An adaptive law is then introduced to tune the parameters of the fuzzy system on-line. Finally, for evaluating the controller and the robust performance of the closed-loop system, the proposed regulator is implemented on a real-time mechanical vibrating system.

  12. Prebiotics Do Not Influence the Severity of Atopic Dermatitis in Infants: A Randomised Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    Hill, Martin; Skýba, Tomáš

    2015-01-01

    The objective was to evaluate the effects of a hypoallergenic (HA) formula supplemented with prebiotic galacto-oligosaccharides on the severity of atopic manifestations. A randomised clinical trial was conducted. The control group was infants, fed with hypoallergenic formula and without supplementation. The duration of the study was six months. The primary outcome of the study was a difference in the severity of atopic dermatitis measured using SCORAD (Scoring Atopic Dermatitis) criteria. Secondary outcomes were anthropometry (length, weight, and head circumference), together with the tolerance and incidence of infections. Both groups showed a decrease of average SCORAD values, but no statistically significant difference between the evaluated groups was observed. There were no statistically significant differences in anthropometry, or the tolerance or incidence of infections. Although there is no evidence, that consumption of a hypoallergenic infant formula enriched with prebiotic galacto-oligosaccharides had any effect on SCORAD, it was safe and well tolerated. Trial Registration www.clinicaltrials.gov NCT 02077088 PMID:26571488

  13. Vouchers versus Lotteries: What works best in promoting Chlamydia screening? A cluster randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Niza, Claudia; Rudisill, Caroline; Dolan, Paul

    2014-01-01

    In this cluster randomised trial (N=1060), we tested the impact of financial incentives (£5 voucher vs. £200 lottery) framed as a gain or loss to promote Chlamydia screening in students aged 18–24 years, mimicking the standard outreach approach to student in halls of residence. Compared to the control group (1.5%), the lottery increased screening to 2.8% and the voucher increased screening to 22.8%. Incentives framed as gains were marginally more effective (10.5%) that loss-framed incentives (7.1%). This work fundamentally contributes to the literature by testing the predictive validity of Prospect Theory to change health behaviour in the field. PMID:25061507

  14. An overview of randomised controlled trials of adjuvant chemotherapy in head and neck cancer.

    PubMed Central

    Munro, A. J.

    1995-01-01

    Meta-analysis of the published results from 54 randomised controlled trials of adjuvant chemotherapy in head and neck cancer suggests that chemotherapy might increase absolute survival by 6.5% (95% confidence interval 3.1-9.9%). The odds ratio in favour of chemotherapy is 1.37 (95% confidence interval 1.24-1.5). Single-agent chemotherapy given synchronously with radiotherapy increased survival by 12.1% (95% confidence interval 5-19%). The benefit from neoadjuvant chemotherapy was less: a rate difference of 3.7% (95% confidence interval 0.9-6.5%). The results suggest that the investigation of optimal agents and scheduling for synchronous radiotherapy and chemotherapy might still be important in clinical trials in head and neck cancer. PMID:7819055

  15. Randomised controlled trial of early discharge for inguinal hernia and varicose veins.

    PubMed Central

    Adler, M W; Waller, J J; Creese, A; Thorne, S C

    1978-01-01

    A randomised controlled trial has been conducted into the effects of discharging patients from hospital either 48 hours or six to seven days after operations for inguinal hernia and varicose veins. There was no statistically significant difference in major postoperative complications between the two lengths of stay for either of the two conditions. Similarly there was no difference between the two groups of hernia patients in relation to eventual recurrences. There was no significant difference in length of convalescence between long-stay and short-stay patients in full-time occupations. The savings to the statutory services of discharging patients early were estimated at 25.72 pounds per patient. Patients appeared to approve of the type of care they experienced, regardless of length of stay. However, the families of short-stay patients were significantly less enthusiastic in their attitudes towards the policy of early discharge than the families of long-stay patients. PMID:98548

  16. Robust algebraic image enhancement for intelligent control systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lerner, Bao-Ting; Morrelli, Michael

    1993-01-01

    Robust vision capability for intelligent control systems has been an elusive goal in image processing. The computationally intensive techniques a necessary for conventional image processing make real-time applications, such as object tracking and collision avoidance difficult. In order to endow an intelligent control system with the needed vision robustness, an adequate image enhancement subsystem capable of compensating for the wide variety of real-world degradations, must exist between the image capturing and the object recognition subsystems. This enhancement stage must be adaptive and must operate with consistency in the presence of both statistical and shape-based noise. To deal with this problem, we have developed an innovative algebraic approach which provides a sound mathematical framework for image representation and manipulation. Our image model provides a natural platform from which to pursue dynamic scene analysis, and its incorporation into a vision system would serve as the front-end to an intelligent control system. We have developed a unique polynomial representation of gray level imagery and applied this representation to develop polynomial operators on complex gray level scenes. This approach is highly advantageous since polynomials can be manipulated very easily, and are readily understood, thus providing a very convenient environment for image processing. Our model presents a highly structured and compact algebraic representation of grey-level images which can be viewed as fuzzy sets.

  17. Robust Inversion and Data Compression in Control Allocation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hodel, A. Scottedward

    2000-01-01

    We present an off-line computational method for control allocation design. The control allocation function delta = F(z)tau = delta (sub 0) (z) mapping commanded body-frame torques to actuator commands is implicitly specified by trim condition delta (sub 0) (z) and by a robust pseudo-inverse problem double vertical line I - G(z) F(z) double vertical line less than epsilon (z) where G(z) is a system Jacobian evaluated at operating point z, z circumflex is an estimate of z, and epsilon (z) less than 1 is a specified error tolerance. The allocation function F(z) = sigma (sub i) psi (z) F (sub i) is computed using a heuristic technique for selecting wavelet basis functions psi and a constrained least-squares criterion for selecting the allocation matrices F (sub i). The method is applied to entry trajectory control allocation for a reusable launch vehicle (X-33).

  18. Robust Bio-regenerative Life Support Systems Control

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Duatis, Jordi; Angulo, Cecilio; Puig, Vicenç; Ponsa, Pere

    Recent developments in the international space community have shown that there is an increasing interest in the human exploration of outer space. In particular, the objective of sending a manned mission to Mars by 2030 has been settled. The feasibility of such a mission will require "life support systems" (LSSs) able to provide vital elements to the exploration crew in an autonomous, self-sustained manner, as resupply from Earth will not be possible. Bio-regenerative life support systems (BLSSs) are considered to be the LSS technology alternatives that can meet this demand. Developing effective BLSSs is a challenge for the control community because of the high degree of automation, indeterminism, non-linearity, and instability in such systems. This chapter proposes to provide "robustness" to the system for tasks such as distributed control, intelligent control, fault detection and identification, or high-level planning and supervision.

  19. Free breakfasts in schools: design and conduct of a cluster randomised controlled trial of the Primary School Free Breakfast Initiative in Wales [ISRCTN18336527

    PubMed Central

    Moore, Laurence; Moore, Graham F; Tapper, Katy; Lynch, Rebecca; Desousa, Carol; Hale, Janine; Roberts, Chris; Murphy, Simon

    2007-01-01

    Background School-based breakfast provision is increasingly being seen as a means of improving educational performance and dietary behaviour amongst children. Furthermore, recognition is growing that breakfast provision offers potential as a means of addressing social inequalities in these outcomes. At present however, the evidence base on the effectiveness of breakfast provision in bringing about these improvements is limited. Methods/Design This paper describes the research design of a large scale evaluation of the effectiveness of the Welsh Assembly Government's Primary School Free Breakfast Initiative. A cluster randomised trial, with school as the unit of randomisation was used for the outcome evaluation, with a nested qualitative process evaluation. Quantitative outcome measures included dietary habits, attitudes, cognitive function, classroom behaviour, and school attendance. The study recruited 111 primary schools in Wales, of which 56 were randomly assigned to control condition and 55 to intervention. Participants were Year 5 and 6 students (aged 9–11 years) in these schools. Data were collected for all 111 schools at each of three time points: baseline, 4 month and 12 month follow-up. This was achieved through a repeated cross-sectional survey of approximately 4350 students on each of these occasions. Of those students in Year 5 at baseline, 1975 provided data at one or both of the follow-ups, forming a nested cohort. The evaluation also included a nested process evaluation, using questionnaires, semi-structured interviews and case studies with students, school staff, and local authority scheme coordinators as key informants. Discussion An overview of the methods used for the evaluation is presented, providing an example of the feasibility of conducting robust evaluations of policy initiatives using a randomised trial design with nested process evaluation. Details are provided of response rates and the flow of participants. Reflection is offered on

  20. Smartphone-Supported versus Full Behavioural Activation for Depression: A Randomised Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    Ly, Kien Hoa; Topooco, Naira; Cederlund, Hanna; Wallin, Anna; Bergström, Jan; Molander, Olof; Carlbring, Per; Andersson, Gerhard

    2015-01-01

    Background There is need for more cost and time effective treatments for depression. This is the first randomised controlled trial in which a blended treatment - including four face-to-face sessions and a smartphone application - was compared against a full behavioural treatment. Hence, the aim of the current paper was to examine whether a blended smartphone treatment was non-inferior to a full behavioural activation treatment for depression. Methods This was a randomised controlled non-inferiority trial (NCT01819025) comparing a blended treatment (n=46) against a full ten-session treatment (n=47) for people suffering from major depression. Primary outcome measure was the BDI-II, that was administered at pre- and post-treatment, as well as six months after the treatment. Results Results showed significant improvements in both groups across time on the primary outcome measure (within-group Cohen’s d=1.35; CI [−0.82, 3.52] to d=1.47; CI [−0.41, 3.35]; between group d=−0.13 CI [−2.37, 2.09] and d=−0.10 CI [−2.53, 2.33]). At the same time, the blended treatment reduced the therapist time with an average of 47%. Conclusions We could not establish whether the blended treatment was non-inferior to a full BA treatment. Nevertheless, this study points to that the blended treatment approach could possibly treat nearly twice as many patients suffering from depression by using a smartphone applica¬tion as add-on. More studies are needed before we can suggest that the blended treatment method is a promising cost-effective alternative to regular face-to-face treatment for depression. Trial Registration Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Treatment of Depression With Smartphone Support NCT01819025 PMID:26010890

  1. A randomised controlled trial of acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) for psychosis: study protocol

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Cognitive behavior therapy for psychosis has been a prominent intervention in the psychological treatment of psychosis. It is, however, a challenging therapy to deliver and, in the context of increasingly rigorous trials, recent reviews have tempered initial enthusiasm about its effectiveness in improving clinical outcomes. Acceptance and commitment therapy shows promise as a briefer, more easily implemented therapy but has not yet been rigorously evaluated in the context of psychosis. The purpose of this trial is to evaluate whether Acceptance and Commitment Therapy could reduce the distress and disability associated with psychotic symptoms in a sample of community-residing patients with chronic medication-resistant symptoms. Methods/Design This is a single (rater)-blind multi-centre randomised controlled trial comparing Acceptance and Commitment Therapy with an active comparison condition, Befriending. Eligible participants have current residual hallucinations or delusions with associated distress or disability which have been present continuously over the past six months despite therapeutic doses of antipsychotic medication. Following baseline assessment, participants are randomly allocated to treatment condition with blinded, post-treatment assessments conducted at the end of treatment and at 6 months follow-up. The primary outcome is overall mental state as measured using the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale. Secondary outcomes include preoccupation, conviction, distress and disruption to life associated with symptoms as measured by the Psychotic Symptom Rating Scales, as well as social functioning and service utilisation. The main analyses will be by intention-to-treat using mixed-model repeated measures with non-parametric methods employed if required. The model of change underpinning ACT will be tested using mediation analyses. Discussion This protocol describes the first randomised controlled trial of Acceptance and commitment therapy in

  2. Defining Feasibility and Pilot Studies in Preparation for Randomised Controlled Trials: Development of a Conceptual Framework

    PubMed Central

    Eldridge, Sandra M.; Lancaster, Gillian A.; Campbell, Michael J.; Thabane, Lehana; Hopewell, Sally; Coleman, Claire L.; Bond, Christine M.

    2016-01-01

    We describe a framework for defining pilot and feasibility studies focusing on studies conducted in preparation for a randomised controlled trial. To develop the framework, we undertook a Delphi survey; ran an open meeting at a trial methodology conference; conducted a review of definitions outside the health research context; consulted experts at an international consensus meeting; and reviewed 27 empirical pilot or feasibility studies. We initially adopted mutually exclusive definitions of pilot and feasibility studies. However, some Delphi survey respondents and the majority of open meeting attendees disagreed with the idea of mutually exclusive definitions. Their viewpoint was supported by definitions outside the health research context, the use of the terms ‘pilot’ and ‘feasibility’ in the literature, and participants at the international consensus meeting. In our framework, pilot studies are a subset of feasibility studies, rather than the two being mutually exclusive. A feasibility study asks whether something can be done, should we proceed with it, and if so, how. A pilot study asks the same questions but also has a specific design feature: in a pilot study a future study, or part of a future study, is conducted on a smaller scale. We suggest that to facilitate their identification, these studies should be clearly identified using the terms ‘feasibility’ or ‘pilot’ as appropriate. This should include feasibility studies that are largely qualitative; we found these difficult to identify in electronic searches because researchers rarely used the term ‘feasibility’ in the title or abstract of such studies. Investigators should also report appropriate objectives and methods related to feasibility; and give clear confirmation that their study is in preparation for a future randomised controlled trial designed to assess the effect of an intervention. PMID:26978655

  3. Improving health-related fitness in adolescents: the CrossFit Teens™ randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Eather, Narelle; Morgan, Philip James; Lubans, David Revalds

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate the preliminary efficacy and feasibility of the CrossFit Teens™ resistance training programme for improving health-related fitness and resistance training skill competency in adolescents. This assessor-blinded randomised controlled trial was conducted in one secondary school in the Hunter Region, Australia, from July to September 2013. Ninety-six (96) students (age = 15.4 (.5) years, 51.5% female) were randomised into intervention (n = 51) or control (n = 45) conditions for 8-weeks (60 min twice per week). Waist circumference, body mass index (BMI), BMI-Z score (primary outcomes), cardiorespiratory fitness (shuttle run test), muscular fitness (standing jump, push-up, handgrip, curl-up test), flexibility (sit and reach) and resistance training skill competency were measured at baseline and immediate post-intervention. Feasibility measures of recruitment, retention, adherence and satisfaction were assessed. Significant group-by-time intervention effects were found for waist circumference [-3.1 cm, P < 0.001], BMI [-1.38 kg · m(‒)(2), P < 0.001], BMI-Z [-0.5 z-scores, P < 0.001], sit and reach [+3.0 cm, P < 0.001], standing jump [+0.1 m, P = 0.021] and shuttle run [+10.3 laps, P = 0.019]. Retention rate was 82.3%. All programme sessions were delivered and participants' mean satisfaction scores ranged from 4.2 to 4.6 out of 5. The findings demonstrate that CrossFit Teens™ is a feasible and efficacious programme for improving health-related fitness in adolescents.

  4. Food incentives to improve completion of tuberculosis treatment: randomised controlled trial in Dili, Timor-Leste

    PubMed Central

    Martins, Nelson; Morris, Peter

    2009-01-01

    Objective To determine the effectiveness of the provision of whole food to enhance completion of treatment for tuberculosis. Design Parallel group randomised controlled trial. Setting Three primary care clinics in Dili, Timor-Leste. Participants 270 adults aged ≥18 with previously untreated newly diagnosed pulmonary tuberculosis. Main outcome measures Completion of treatment (including cure). Secondary outcomes included adherence to treatment, weight gain, and clearance of sputum smears. Outcomes were assessed remotely, blinded to allocation status. Interventions Participants started standard tuberculosis treatment and were randomly assigned to intervention (nutritious, culturally appropriate daily meal (weeks 1-8) and food package (weeks 9-32) (n=137) or control (nutritional advice, n=133) groups. Randomisation sequence was computer generated with allocation concealment by sequentially numbered, opaque, sealed envelopes. Results Most patients with tuberculosis were poor, malnourished men living close to the clinics; 265/270 (98%) contributed to the analysis. The intervention had no significant beneficial or harmful impact on the outcome of treatment (76% v 78% completion, P=0.7) or adherence (93% for both groups, P=0.7) but did lead to improved weight gain at the end of treatment (10.1% v 7.5% improvement, P=0.04). Itch was more common in the intervention group (21% v 9%, P<0.01). In a subgroup analysis of patients with positive results on sputum smears, there were clinically important improvements in one month sputum clearance (85% v 67%, P=0.13) and completion of treatment (78% v 68%, P=0.3). Conclusion Provision of food did not improve outcomes with tuberculosis treatment in these patients in Timor-Leste. Further studies in different settings and measuring different outcomes are required. Trial registration Clinical Trials NCT0019256. PMID:19858174

  5. Recruiting older people to a randomised controlled dietary intervention trial - how hard can it be?

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background The success of a human intervention trial depends upon the ability to recruit eligible volunteers. Many trials fail because of unrealistic recruitment targets and flawed recruitment strategies. In order to predict recruitment rates accurately, researchers need information on the relative success of various recruitment strategies. Few published trials include such information and the number of participants screened or approached is not always cited. Methods This paper will describe in detail the recruitment strategies employed to identify older adults for recruitment to a 6-month randomised controlled dietary intervention trial which aimed to explore the relationship between diet and immune function (The FIT study). The number of people approached and recruited, and the reasons for exclusion, will be discussed. Results Two hundred and seventeen participants were recruited to the trial. A total of 7,482 letters were sent to potential recruits using names and addresses that had been supplied by local Family (General) Practices. Eight hundred and forty three potential recruits replied to all methods of recruitment (528 from GP letters and 315 from other methods). The eligibility of those who replied was determined using a screening telephone interview, 217 of whom were found to be suitable and agreed to take part in the study. Conclusion The study demonstrates the application of multiple recruitment methods to successfully recruit older people to a randomised controlled trial. The most successful recruitment method was by contacting potential recruits by letter on NHS headed note paper using contacts provided from General Practices. Ninety percent of recruitment was achieved using this method. Adequate recruitment is fundamental to the success of a research project, and appropriate strategies must therefore be adopted in order to identify eligible individuals and achieve recruitment targets. Trial registration number ISRCTN45031464. PMID:20175903

  6. Defining Feasibility and Pilot Studies in Preparation for Randomised Controlled Trials: Development of a Conceptual Framework.

    PubMed

    Eldridge, Sandra M; Lancaster, Gillian A; Campbell, Michael J; Thabane, Lehana; Hopewell, Sally; Coleman, Claire L; Bond, Christine M

    2016-01-01

    We describe a framework for defining pilot and feasibility studies focusing on studies conducted in preparation for a randomised controlled trial. To develop the framework, we undertook a Delphi survey; ran an open meeting at a trial methodology conference; conducted a review of definitions outside the health research context; consulted experts at an international consensus meeting; and reviewed 27 empirical pilot or feasibility studies. We initially adopted mutually exclusive definitions of pilot and feasibility studies. However, some Delphi survey respondents and the majority of open meeting attendees disagreed with the idea of mutually exclusive definitions. Their viewpoint was supported by definitions outside the health research context, the use of the terms 'pilot' and 'feasibility' in the literature, and participants at the international consensus meeting. In our framework, pilot studies are a subset of feasibility studies, rather than the two being mutually exclusive. A feasibility study asks whether something can be done, should we proceed with it, and if so, how. A pilot study asks the same questions but also has a specific design feature: in a pilot study a future study, or part of a future study, is conducted on a smaller scale. We suggest that to facilitate their identification, these studies should be clearly identified using the terms 'feasibility' or 'pilot' as appropriate. This should include feasibility studies that are largely qualitative; we found these difficult to identify in electronic searches because researchers rarely used the term 'feasibility' in the title or abstract of such studies. Investigators should also report appropriate objectives and methods related to feasibility; and give clear confirmation that their study is in preparation for a future randomised controlled trial designed to assess the effect of an intervention.

  7. Randomised, double blind, placebo‐controlled trial of selenium supplementation in adult asthma

    PubMed Central

    Shaheen, Seif O; Newson, Roger B; Rayman, Margaret P; Wong, Angela P‐L; Tumilty, Michael K; Phillips, Joanna M; Potts, James F; Kelly, Frank J; White, Patrick T; Burney, Peter G J

    2007-01-01

    Background Epidemiological evidence from observational studies has suggested that blood levels and dietary intake of selenium of adults with asthma are lower than those of controls. The only previous trial of selenium supplementation in adults with asthma found no objective evidence of benefit but involved only 24 participants. Methods A randomised, double blind, placebo‐controlled trial of selenium supplementation was performed in adults with asthma in London, UK, the majority of whom (75%) reported inhaled steroid use at baseline. 197 participants were randomised to receive either a high‐selenium yeast preparation (100 µg daily, n = 99) or placebo (yeast only, n = 98) for 24 weeks. The primary outcome was asthma‐related quality of life (QoL) score. Secondary outcomes included lung function, asthma symptom scores, peak flow and bronchodilator usage. Linear regression was used to analyse the change in outcome between the two treatment arms by “intention to treat”. Results There was a 48% increase in plasma selenium between baseline and end of trial in the active treatment group but no change in the placebo group. While the QoL score improved more in the active treatment group than in the placebo group, the difference in change in score between the two groups was not significant (−0.05 (95% CI −0.19 to 0.09); p = 0.47). Selenium supplementation was not associated with any significant improvement in secondary outcomes compared with placebo. Conclusions Selenium supplementation had no clinical benefit in adults with asthma, the majority of whom were taking inhaled steroids. PMID:17234657

  8. Improving health-related fitness in adolescents: the CrossFit Teens™ randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Eather, Narelle; Morgan, Philip James; Lubans, David Revalds

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate the preliminary efficacy and feasibility of the CrossFit Teens™ resistance training programme for improving health-related fitness and resistance training skill competency in adolescents. This assessor-blinded randomised controlled trial was conducted in one secondary school in the Hunter Region, Australia, from July to September 2013. Ninety-six (96) students (age = 15.4 (.5) years, 51.5% female) were randomised into intervention (n = 51) or control (n = 45) conditions for 8-weeks (60 min twice per week). Waist circumference, body mass index (BMI), BMI-Z score (primary outcomes), cardiorespiratory fitness (shuttle run test), muscular fitness (standing jump, push-up, handgrip, curl-up test), flexibility (sit and reach) and resistance training skill competency were measured at baseline and immediate post-intervention. Feasibility measures of recruitment, retention, adherence and satisfaction were assessed. Significant group-by-time intervention effects were found for waist circumference [-3.1 cm, P < 0.001], BMI [-1.38 kg · m(‒)(2), P < 0.001], BMI-Z [-0.5 z-scores, P < 0.001], sit and reach [+3.0 cm, P < 0.001], standing jump [+0.1 m, P = 0.021] and shuttle run [+10.3 laps, P = 0.019]. Retention rate was 82.3%. All programme sessions were delivered and participants' mean satisfaction scores ranged from 4.2 to 4.6 out of 5. The findings demonstrate that CrossFit Teens™ is a feasible and efficacious programme for improving health-related fitness in adolescents. PMID:25972203

  9. Rofecoxib versus ibuprofen for acute treatment of migraine: a randomised placebo controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Misra, U; Jose, M; Kalita, J

    2004-01-01

    Background: Rofecoxib is a potent cyclo-oxygenase-2 inhibitor with a long duration of action. Its role in migraine has not been systematically evaluated. Aim: To study the efficacy of rofecoxib in migraine. Method: In a randomised placebo controlled trial rofecoxib 25 mg, ibuprofen 400 mg, and placebo were compared regarding their efficacy in relieving acute migraine attack. Migraine patients with 2–6 attacks per month were recruited. Headache severity, functional disability, and severity of associated symptoms were graded on a 0–3 scale. The primary endpoint was pain relief at two hours. Relief of associated symptoms and sustained pain relief for 24 hours were also noted. Result: One hundred and twenty four patients were randomised into rofecoxib (42), ibuprofen (40), and placebo (42) groups. One hundred and one patients were followed up: 33 on rofecoxib, 35 ibuprofen, and 33 placebo. Patients' ages ranged from 16–62 (mean 31.4) years, and 83 were females. Pain relief at two hours was noted in 45.5% on rofecoxib, 55.6% on ibuprofen, and 9.1% in the placebo group. The associated symptoms at two hours were reduced in 39.4% on rofecoxib, 50% on ibuprofen, and 9.1% in the placebo group. Sustained 24 hour pain relief was noted in 36.4% on rofecoxib, 41% on ibuprofen, and 6.1% in the placebo group. In the ibuprofen group, five patients had abdominal pain but there were no side effects in those on rofecoxib or in the control group. Both rofecoxib and ibuprofen were significantly effective in relieving pain, associated symptoms at two hours, and in sustained pain relief. There was no significant difference between rofecoxib and ibuprofen in aborting acute migraine attacks. Conclusions: Both ibuprofen and rofecoxib were superior to placebo in aborting an acute migraine attack, and there was no significant difference in their efficacy in an acute migraine attack. PMID:15579612

  10. Passivity-based Robust Control of Aerospace Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kelkar, Atul G.; Joshi, Suresh M. (Technical Monitor)

    2000-01-01

    This report provides a brief summary of the research work performed over the duration of the cooperative research agreement between NASA Langley Research Center and Kansas State University. The cooperative agreement which was originally for the duration the three years was extended by another year through no-cost extension in order to accomplish the goals of the project. The main objective of the research was to develop passivity-based robust control methodology for passive and non-passive aerospace systems. The focus of the first-year's research was limited to the investigation of passivity-based methods for the robust control of Linear Time-Invariant (LTI) single-input single-output (SISO), open-loop stable, minimum-phase non-passive systems. The second year's focus was mainly on extending the passivity-based methodology to a larger class of non-passive LTI systems which includes unstable and nonminimum phase SISO systems. For LTI non-passive systems, five different passification. methods were developed. The primary effort during the years three and four was on the development of passification methodology for MIMO systems, development of methods for checking robustness of passification, and developing synthesis techniques for passifying compensators. For passive LTI systems optimal synthesis procedure was also developed for the design of constant-gain positive real controllers. For nonlinear passive systems, numerical optimization-based technique was developed for the synthesis of constant as well as time-varying gain positive-real controllers. The passivity-based control design methodology developed during the duration of this project was demonstrated by its application to various benchmark examples. These example systems included longitudinal model of an F-18 High Alpha Research Vehicle (HARV) for pitch axis control, NASA's supersonic transport wind tunnel model, ACC benchmark model, 1-D acoustic duct model, piezo-actuated flexible link model, and NASA

  11. Digital robust control law synthesis using constrained optimization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mukhopadhyay, Vivekananda

    1989-01-01

    Development of digital robust control laws for active control of high performance flexible aircraft and large space structures is a research area of significant practical importance. The flexible system is typically modeled by a large order state space system of equations in order to accurately represent the dynamics. The active control law must satisy multiple conflicting design requirements and maintain certain stability margins, yet should be simple enough to be implementable on an onboard digital computer. Described here is an application of a generic digital control law synthesis procedure for such a system, using optimal control theory and constrained optimization technique. A linear quadratic Gaussian type cost function is minimized by updating the free parameters of the digital control law, while trying to satisfy a set of constraints on the design loads, responses and stability margins. Analytical expressions for the gradients of the cost function and the constraints with respect to the control law design variables are used to facilitate rapid numerical convergence. These gradients can be used for sensitivity study and may be integrated into a simultaneous structure and control optimization scheme.

  12. Robust Decentralized Nonlinear Control for a Twin Rotor MIMO System

    PubMed Central

    Belmonte, Lidia María; Morales, Rafael; Fernández-Caballero, Antonio; Somolinos, José Andrés

    2016-01-01

    This article presents the design of a novel decentralized nonlinear multivariate control scheme for an underactuated, nonlinear and multivariate laboratory helicopter denominated the twin rotor MIMO system (TRMS). The TRMS is characterized by a coupling effect between rotor dynamics and the body of the model, which is due to the action-reaction principle originated in the acceleration and deceleration of the motor-propeller groups. The proposed controller is composed of two nested loops that are utilized to achieve stabilization and precise trajectory tracking tasks for the controlled position of the generalized coordinates of the TRMS. The nonlinear internal loop is used to control the electrical dynamics of the platform, and the nonlinear external loop allows the platform to be perfectly stabilized and positioned in space. Finally, we illustrate the theoretical control developments with a set of experiments in order to verify the effectiveness of the proposed nonlinear decentralized feedback controller, in which a comparative study with other controllers is performed, illustrating the excellent performance of the proposed robust decentralized control scheme in both stabilization and trajectory tracking tasks. PMID:27472338

  13. Active structural vibration control: Robust to temperature variations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gupta, Vivek; Sharma, Manu; Thakur, Nagesh

    2012-11-01

    d-form augmented piezoelectric constitutive equations which take into account temperature dependence of piezoelectric strain coefficient (d31) and permittivity (∈33), are converted into e-form. Using e-form constitutive equations, a finite element model of a smart two dimensional plate instrumented with piezoelectric patches is derived. Equations of motion are derived using Hamilton's variational principle. Coupled equations of motion are uncoupled using modal analysis. Modal state vectors are estimated using the Kalman observer. The first mode of smart cantilevered plate is actively controlled using negative first modal velocity feedback at various temperatures. Total control effort required to do so is calculated using the electro-mechanical impedance method. The temperature dependence of sensor voltage, control voltage, control effort and Kalman observer equations is shown analytically. Simulation results are presented using MATLAB. Variations in (i) peak sensor voltage, (ii) actual and estimated first modal velocities, (iii) peak control voltage, (iv) total control effort and (v) settling time with respect to temperature are presented. Active vibration control performance is not maintained at temperature away from reference temperature when the temperature dependence of piezoelectric stress coefficient ‘e31' and permittivity ‘∈33' is not included in piezoelectric constitutive equations. Active control of vibrations becomes robust to temperature variations when the temperature dependence of ‘e31' and ‘∈33' is included in piezoelectric constitutive equations.

  14. Withdrawal of inhaled corticosteroids in people with COPD in primary care: a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Choudhury, Aklak B; Dawson, Carolyn M; Kilvington, Hazel E; Eldridge, Sandra; James, Wai-Yee; Wedzicha, Jadwiga A; Feder, Gene S; Griffiths, Chris J

    2007-01-01

    Background Guidelines recommend inhaled corticosteroids (ICS) for patients with severe chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Most COPD patients are managed in primary care and receive ICS long-term and irrespective of severity. The effect of withdrawing ICS from COPD patients in primary care is unknown. Methods In a pragmatic randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial in 31 practices, 260 COPD patients stopped their usual ICS (median duration of use 8 years) and were allocated to 500 mcg fluticasone propionate twice daily (n = 128), or placebo (n = 132). Follow-up assessments took place at three monthly intervals for a year at the patients' practice. Our primary outcome was COPD exacerbation frequency. Secondary outcomes were time to first COPD exacerbation, reported symptoms, peak expiratory flow rate and reliever inhaler use, and lung function and health related quality of life. Results In patients randomised to placebo, COPD exacerbation risk over one year was RR: 1.11 (CI: 0.91–1.36). Patients taking placebo were more likely to return to their usual ICS following exacerbation, placebo: 61/128 (48%); fluticasone: 34/132 (26%), OR: 2.35 (CI: 1.38–4.05). Exacerbation risk whilst taking randomised treatment was significantly raised in the placebo group 1.48 (CI: 1.17–1.86). Patients taking placebo exacerbated earlier (median time to first exacerbation: placebo (days): 44 (CI: 29–59); fluticasone: 63 (CI: 53–74), log rank 3.81, P = 0.05) and reported increased wheeze. In a post-hoc analysis, patients with mild COPD taking placebo had increased exacerbation risk RR: 1.94 (CI: 1.20–3.14). Conclusion Withdrawal of long-term ICS in COPD patients in primary care increases risk of exacerbation shortens time to exacerbation and causes symptom deterioration. Patients with mild COPD may be at increased risk of exacerbation after withdrawal. Trial Registration ClinicalTrials.gov NCT00440687 PMID:18162137

  15. Can improving working memory prevent academic difficulties? a school based randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Low academic achievement is common and is associated with adverse outcomes such as grade repetition, behavioural disorders and unemployment. The ability to accurately identify these children and intervene before they experience academic failure would be a major advance over the current 'wait to fail' model. Recent research suggests that a possible modifiable factor for low academic achievement is working memory, the ability to temporarily store and manipulate information in a 'mental workspace'. Children with working memory difficulties are at high risk of academic failure. It has recently been demonstrated that working memory can be improved with adaptive training tasks that encourage improvements in working memory capacity. Our trial will determine whether the intervention is efficacious as a selective prevention strategy for young children at risk of academic difficulties and is cost-effective. Methods/Design This randomised controlled trial aims to recruit 440 children with low working memory after a school-based screening of 2880 children in Grade one. We will approach caregivers of all children from 48 participating primary schools in metropolitan Melbourne for consent. Children with low working memory will be randomised to usual care or the intervention. The intervention will consist of 25 computerised working memory training sessions, which take approximately 35 minutes each to complete. Follow-up of children will be conducted at 6, 12 and 24 months post-randomisation through child face-to-face assessment, parent and teacher surveys and data from government authorities. The primary outcome is academic achievement at 12 and 24 months, and other outcomes include child behaviour, attention, health-related quality of life, working memory, and health and educational service utilisation. Discussion A successful start to formal learning in school sets the stage for future academic, psychological and economic well-being. If this preventive intervention

  16. Acupuncture for menopausal vasomotor symptoms: study protocol for a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Hot flushes and night sweats (vasomotor symptoms) are common menopausal symptoms, often causing distress, sleep deprivation and reduced quality of life. Although hormone replacement therapy is an effective treatment, there are concerns about serious adverse events. Non-hormonal pharmacological therapies are less effective and can also cause adverse effects. Complementary therapies, including acupuncture, are commonly used for menopausal vasomotor symptoms. While the evidence for the effectiveness of acupuncture in treating vasomotor symptoms is inconclusive, acupuncture has a low risk of adverse effects, and two small studies suggest it may be more effective than non-insertive sham acupuncture. Our objective is to assess the efficacy of needle acupuncture in improving hot flush severity and frequency in menopausal women. Our current study design is informed by methods tested in a pilot study. Methods/design This is a stratified, parallel, randomised sham-controlled trial with equal allocation of participants to two trial groups. We are recruiting 360 menopausal women experiencing a minimum average of seven moderate hot flushes a day over a seven-day period and who meet diagnostic criteria for the Traditional Chinese Medicine diagnosis of Kidney Yin deficiency. Exclusion criteria include breast cancer, surgical menopause, and current hormone replacement therapy use. Eligible women are randomised to receive either true needle acupuncture or sham acupuncture with non-insertive (blunt) needles for ten treatments over eight weeks. Participants are blinded to treatment allocation. Interventions are provided by Chinese medicine acupuncturists who have received specific training on trial procedures. The primary outcome measure is hot flush score, assessed using the validated Hot Flush Diary. Secondary outcome measures include health-related quality of life, anxiety and depression symptoms, credibility of the sham treatment, expectancy and beliefs about

  17. Health-related quality of life in small-cell lung cancer: a systematic review on reporting of methods and clinical issues in randomised controlled trials.

    PubMed

    Zikos, Efstathios; Ghislain, Irina; Coens, Corneel; Ediebah, Divine E; Sloan, Elizabeth; Quinten, Chantal; Koller, Michael; van Meerbeeck, Jan P; Flechtner, Hans-Henning; Stupp, Roger; Pallis, Athanasios; Czimbalmos, Agnes; Sprangers, Mirjam A G; Bottomley, Andrew

    2014-02-01

    Small-cell lung cancer represents about 15% of all lung cancers; increasingly, randomised controlled trials of this disease measure the health-related quality of life of patients. In this Systematic Review we assess the adequacy of reporting of health-related quality-of-life methods in randomised controlled trials of small-cell lung cancer, and the potential effect of this reporting on clinical decision making. Although overall reporting of health-related quality of life was acceptable, improvements are needed to optimise the use of health-related quality of life in randomised controlled trials.

  18. Genetic and Environmental Control of Neurodevelopmental Robustness in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Mellert, David J.; Williamson, W. Ryan; Shirangi, Troy R.; Card, Gwyneth M.; Truman, James W.

    2016-01-01

    Interindividual differences in neuronal wiring may contribute to behavioral individuality and affect susceptibility to neurological disorders. To investigate the causes and potential consequences of wiring variation in Drosophila melanogaster, we focused on a hemilineage of ventral nerve cord interneurons that exhibits morphological variability. We find that late-born subclasses of the 12A hemilineage are highly sensitive to genetic and environmental variation. Neurons in the second thoracic segment are particularly variable with regard to two developmental decisions, whereas its segmental homologs are more robust. This variability “hotspot” depends on Ultrabithorax expression in the 12A neurons, indicating variability is cell-intrinsic and under genetic control. 12A development is more variable and sensitive to temperature in long-established laboratory strains than in strains recently derived from the wild. Strains with a high frequency of one of the 12A variants also showed a high frequency of animals with delayed spontaneous flight initiation, whereas other wing-related behaviors did not show such a correlation and were thus not overtly affected by 12A variation. These results show that neurodevelopmental robustness is variable and under genetic control in Drosophila and suggest that the fly may serve as a model for identifying conserved gene pathways that stabilize wiring in stressful developmental environments. Moreover, some neuronal lineages are variation hotspots and thus may be more amenable to evolutionary change. PMID:27223118

  19. Effect of dronabinol on progression in progressive multiple sclerosis (CUPID): a randomised, placebo-controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Zajicek, John; Ball, Susan; Wright, David; Vickery, Jane; Nunn, Andrew; Miller, David; Cano, Mayam Gomez; McManus, David; Mallik, Sharukh; Hobart, Jeremy

    2013-01-01

    Summary Background Laboratory evidence has shown that cannabinoids might have a neuroprotective action. We investigated whether oral dronabinol (Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol) might slow the course of progressive multiple sclerosis. Methods In this multicentre, parallel, randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled study, we recruited patients aged 18–65 years with primary or secondary progressive multiple sclerosis from 27 UK neurology or rehabilitation departments. Patients were randomly assigned (2:1) to receive dronabinol or placebo for 36 months; randomisation was by stochastic minimisation, using a computer-generated randomisation sequence, balanced according to expanded disability status scale (EDSS) score, centre, and disease type. Maximum dose was 28 mg per day, titrated against bodyweight and adverse effects. Primary outcomes were EDSS score progression (masked assessor, time to progression of ≥1 point from a baseline score of 4·0–5·0 or ≥0·5 points from a baseline score of ≥5·5, confirmed after 6 months) and change from baseline in the physical impact subscale of the 29-item multiple sclerosis impact scale (MSIS-29-PHYS). All patients who received at least one dose of study drug were included in the intention-to-treat analyses. This trial is registered as an International Standard Randomised Controlled Trial (ISRCTN 62942668). Findings Of the 498 patients randomly assigned to a treatment group, 329 received at least one dose of dronabinol and 164 received at least one dose of placebo (five did not receive the allocated intervention). 145 patients in the dronabinol group had EDSS score progression (0·24 first progression events per patient-year; crude rate) compared with 73 in the placebo group (0·23 first progression events per patient-year; crude rate); HR for prespecified primary analysis was 0·92 (95% CI 0·68–1·23; p=0·57). Mean yearly change in MSIS-29-PHYS score was 0·62 points (SD 3·29) in the dronabinol group versus 1·03 points

  20. Robust isothermal electric control of exchange bias at room temperature

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Binek, Christian

    2011-03-01

    Voltage-controlled spintronics is of particular importance to continue progress in information technology through reduced power consumption, enhanced processing speed, integration density, and functionality in comparison with present day CMOS electronics. Almost all existing and prototypical solid-state spintronic devices rely on tailored interface magnetism, enabling spin-selective transmission or scattering of electrons. Controlling magnetism at thin-film interfaces, preferably by purely electrical means, is a key challenge to better spintronics. Currently, most attempts to electrically control magnetism focus on potentially large magnetoelectric effects of multiferroics. We report on our interest in magnetoelectric Cr 2 O3 (chromia). Robust isothermal electric control of exchange bias is achieved at room temperature in perpendicular anisotropic Cr 2 O3 (0001)/CoPd exchange bias heterostructures. This discovery promises significant implications for potential spintronics. From the perspective of basic science, our finding serves as macroscopic evidence for roughness-insensitive and electrically controllable equilibrium boundary magnetization in magnetoelectric antiferromagnets. The latter evolves at chromia (0001) surfaces and interfaces when chromia is in one of its two degenerate antiferromagnetic single domain states selected via magnetoelectric annealing. Theoretical insight into the boundary magnetization and its role in electrically controlled exchange bias is gained from first-principles calculations and general symmetry arguments. Measurements of spin-resolved ultraviolet photoemission, magnetometry at Cr 2 O3 (0001) surfaces, and detailed investigations of the unique exchange bias properties of Cr 2 O3 (0001)/CoPd including its electric controllability provide macroscopically averaged information about the boundary magnetization of chromia. Laterally resolved X-ray PEEM and temperature dependent MFM reveal detailed microscopic information of the chromia

  1. Robust reliable control design for networked control system with sampling communication

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sakthivel, R.; Santra, Srimanta; Mathiyalagan, K.; Su, Hongye

    2015-12-01

    In this article, the problem of robust exponential stability and reliable stabilisation for a class of continuous-time networked control systems (NCSs) with a sample-data controller and unknown time-varying sampling rate is considered. The analysis is based on average dwell-time, Lyapunov-Krasovskii functional and linear matrix inequality (LMI) technique. The delay-dependent criteria are developed for ensuring the robust exponential stability of the considered NCSs. The obtained conditions are formulated in terms of LMIs that can easily be solved by using standard software packages. Furthermore, the result is extended to study the robust stabilisation for NCS with parameter uncertainties. A state feedback controller is constructed in terms of the solution to a set of LMIs, which guarantee the robust exponential stabilisation of NCS and the controller. Finally, numerical examples are presented to illustrate the effectiveness of the obtained results.

  2. Study protocol for the randomised controlled trial: combined multimarker screening and randomised patient treatment with ASpirin for evidence-based PREeclampsia prevention (ASPRE)

    PubMed Central

    O'Gorman, Neil; Wright, David; Rolnik, Daniel L; Nicolaides, Kypros H; Poon, Liona C

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Pre-eclampsia (PE) affects 2–3% of all pregnancies and is a major cause of maternal and perinatal morbidity and mortality. Prophylactic use of low-dose aspirin in women at risk for PE may substantially reduce the prevalence of the disease. Effective screening for PE requiring delivery before 37 weeks (preterm PE) can be provided by a combination of maternal factors, uterine artery Doppler, mean arterial pressure, maternal serum pregnancy-associated plasma protein A and placental growth factor at 11–13 weeks' gestation, with a detection rate of 75% at a false-positive rate of 10%. We present a protocol (V.6, date 25 January 2016) for the ASpirin for evidence-based PREeclampsia prevention (ASPRE) trial, which is a double-blinded, placebo-controlled, randomised controlled trial (RCT) that uses an effective PE screening programme to determine whether low-dose aspirin given to women from 11 to 13 weeks' gestation will reduce the incidence of preterm PE. Methods and analysis All eligible women attending for their first trimester scan will be invited to participate in the screening study for preterm PE. Those found to be at high risk of developing preterm PE will be invited to participate in the RCT. Further scans will be conducted for assessment of fetal growth and biomarkers. Pregnancy and neonatal outcomes will be collected and analysed. The first enrolment for the pilot study was in April 2014. As of April 2016, 26 670 women have been screened and 1760 recruited to the RCT. The study is registered on the International Standard Randomised Controlled Trial Number (ISRCTN) registry. Trial registration number ISRCTN13633058. PMID:27354081

  3. The reporting quality of parallel randomised controlled trials in ophthalmic surgery in 2011: a systematic review

    PubMed Central

    Yao, A C; Khajuria, A; Camm, C F; Edison, E; Agha, R

    2014-01-01

    Purpose Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) represent a gold standard for evaluating therapeutic interventions. However, poor reporting clarity can prevent readers from assessing potential bias that can arise from a lack of methodological rigour. The Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials statement for non-pharmacological interventions 2008 (CONSORT NPT) was developed to aid reporting. RCTs in ophthalmic surgery pose particular challenges in study design and implementation. We aim to provide the first assessment of the compliance of RCTs in ophthalmic surgery to the CONSORT NPT statement. Method In August 2012, the Medline database was searched for RCTs in ophthalmic surgery reported between 1 January 2011 and 31 December 2011. Results were searched by two authors and relevant papers selected. Papers were scored against the 23-item CONSORT NPT checklist and compared against surrogate markers of paper quality. The CONSORT score was also compared between different RCT designs. Results In all, 186 papers were retrieved. Sixty-five RCTs, involving 5803 patients, met the inclusion criteria. The mean CONSORT score was 8.9 out of 23 (39%, range 3.0–14.7, SD 2.49). The least reported items related to the title and abstract (1.6%), reporting intervention adherence (3.1%), and interpretation of results (4.7%). No significant correlation was found between CONSORT score and journal impact factor (R=0.14, P=0.29), number of authors (R=0.01, P=0.93), or whether the RCT used paired-eye, one-eye, or two-eye designs in their randomisation (P=0.97). Conclusions The reporting of RCTs in ophthalmic surgery is suboptimal. Further work is needed by trial groups, funding agencies, authors, and journals to improve reporting clarity. PMID:25214001

  4. Auricular Acupuncture and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Insomnia: A Randomised Controlled Study

    PubMed Central

    Bergdahl, L.; Broman, J.-E.; Berman, A. H.; Haglund, K.; von Knorring, L.; Markström, A.

    2016-01-01

    Objective. The most effective nonpharmacological treatment for insomnia disorder is cognitive behavioural therapy-insomnia (CBT-i). However CBT-i may not suit everyone. Auricular acupuncture (AA) is a complementary treatment. Studies show that it may alleviate insomnia symptoms. The aim of this randomised controlled study was to compare treatment effects of AA with CBT-i and evaluate symptoms of insomnia severity, anxiety, and depression. Method. Fifty-nine participants, mean age 60.5 years (SD 9.4), with insomnia disorder were randomised to group treatment with AA or CBT-i. Self-report questionnaires, the Insomnia Severity Index (ISI), Dysfunctional Beliefs and Attitudes about Sleep scale (DBAS-16), Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS), and Hospital Anxiety and Depression scale (HAD), were collected at baseline, after treatment, and at 6-month follow-up. A series of linear mixed models were performed to examine treatment effect over time between and within the groups. Results. Significant between-group improvements were seen in favour of CBT-i in ISI after treatment and at the 6-month follow-up and in DBAS-16 after treatment. Both groups showed significant within-group postintervention improvements in ISI, and these changes were maintained six months later. The CBT-i group also showed a significant reduction in DBAS-16 after treatment and six months later. Conclusions. Compared to CBT-i, AA, as offered in this study, cannot be considered an effective stand-alone treatment for insomnia disorder. The trial is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov NCT01765959. PMID:27242930

  5. PHASE: a randomised, controlled trial of supervised self-help cognitive behavioural therapy in primary care.

    PubMed Central

    Richards, Ann; Barkham, Michael; Cahill, Jane; Richards, David; Williams, Chris; Heywood, Phil

    2003-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Common mental health problems account for up to 40% of all general practitioner (GP) consultations. Patients have limited access to evidence-based psychological therapies. Cognitive behavioural therapy self-help strategies offer one potential solution. AIM: To determine differences in clinical outcome, patient satisfaction and costs, between a cognitive behavioural-based self-help package facilitated by practice nurses compared to ordinary care by GPs for mild to moderate anxiety and depression. DESIGN OF STUDY: Randomised controlled trial. SETTING: Seventeen primary healthcare teams. METHOD: Patients presenting to their GP with mild to moderate anxiety and/or depression were recruited to the study and randomised to receive either a self-help intervention facilitated by practice nurses or ordinary care. The self-help intervention consisted of up to three appointments: two 1 week apart and a third 3 months later. There were no restrictions on ordinary care. RESULTS: Intention-to-treat analysis showed that patients treated with practice nurse-supported cognitive behavioural therapy self-help attained similar clinical outcomes for similar costs and were more satisfied than patients treated by GPs with ordinary care. On-treatment analysis showed patients receiving the facilitated cognitive behavioural therapy self-help were more likely to be below clinical threshold at 1 month compared to the ordinary care group (odds ratio [OR] = 3.65, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.87 to 4.37). This difference was less well marked at 3 months (OR = 1.36, 95% CI = 0.52 to 3.56). CONCLUSION: Facilitated cognitive behavioural self-help may provide a short-term cost-effective clinical benefit for patients with mild to moderate anxiety and depression. This has the potential to help primary care provide a choice of effective psychological as well as pharmacological treatments for mental health problems. PMID:14601351

  6. Acupuncture for post anaesthetic recovery and postoperative pain: study protocol for a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background We report on the design and implementation of a study protocol entitled Acupuncture randomised trial for post anaesthetic recovery and postoperative pain - a pilot study (ACUARP) designed to investigate the effectiveness of acupuncture therapy performed in the perioperative period on post anaesthetic recovery and postoperative pain. Methods/Design The study is designed as a randomised controlled pilot trial with three arms and partial double blinding. We will compare (a) press needle acupuncture, (b) no treatment and (c) press plaster acupressure in a standardised anaesthetic setting. Seventy-five patients scheduled for laparoscopic surgery to the uterus or ovaries will be allocated randomly to one of the three trial arms. The total observation period will begin one day before surgery and end on the second postoperative day. Twelve press needles and press plasters are to be administered preoperatively at seven acupuncture points. The primary outcome measure will be time from extubation to ‘ready for discharge’ from the post anaesthesia care unit (in minutes). The ‘ready for discharge’ end point will be assessed using three different scores: the Aldrete score, the Post Anaesthetic Discharge Scoring System and an In-House score. Secondary outcome measures will comprise pre-, intra- and postoperative variables (which are anxiety, pain, nausea and vomiting, concomitant medication). Discussion The results of this study will provide information on whether acupuncture may improve patient post anaesthetic recovery. Comparing acupuncture with acupressure will provide insight into potential therapeutic differences between invasive and non-invasive acupuncture techniques. Trial registration NCT01816386 (First received: 28 October 2012) PMID:25047046

  7. Ciprofloxacin DPI: a randomised, placebo-controlled, phase IIb efficacy and safety study on cystic fibrosis

    PubMed Central

    Dorkin, Henry L; Staab, Doris; Operschall, Elisabeth; Alder, Jeff; Criollo, Margarita

    2015-01-01

    Background Treatment of infective bronchitis involving Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a cornerstone of care in patients with cystic fibrosis (CF). This phase IIb, randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled study assessed the efficacy and safety of ciprofloxacin dry powder for inhalation (DPI) in this population. Methods Patients with CF, ≥12 years of age (N=286), were randomised to ciprofloxacin DPI (32.5 mg (n=93) or 48.75 mg (n=93)), or corresponding placebo (32.5 mg, n=65; 48.75 mg, n=35) twice daily for 28 days. The primary objective was the change in forced expiratory volume in 1 s (FEV1) from baseline (day 0) to end of treatment (day 29) in the intent-to-treat population for ciprofloxacin DPI compared with the corresponding placebo group. Results The primary effectiveness objective was not met; there were no significant differences in change in FEV1 between ciprofloxacin DPI and the corresponding placebo group for either dose (p=0.154). However, in pooled analyses, FEV1 decline from baseline to treatment end was significantly lower with ciprofloxacin DPI than with placebo (pooled data; p=0.02). Ciprofloxacin DPI showed positive effects on sputum bacterial load and quality of life, but these effects were not maintained at the 4-week follow-up. Ciprofloxacin DPI was well tolerated and there were no significant differences in type/incidence of treatment-emergent adverse events by treatment group (p=0.115). Conclusions Further investigations are needed to determine the full scope of the beneficial effects of ciprofloxacin DPI for patients with CF. Trial registration number Clinicaltrials.gov NCT00645788; EudraCT 2008-008314-40. PMID:26688732

  8. Enhancing relationship functioning during the transition to parenthood: a cluster-randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Daley-McCoy, Cathyrn; Rogers, Maeve; Slade, Pauline

    2015-10-01

    This randomised controlled trial examined the feasibility of enhancing relationship functioning in couples during the transition to parenthood through the development and delivery of a low-intensity antenatal intervention. The 2-h psycho-educational programme marks the first of its kind to be trialled in the UK and was delivered as an adjunct to existing antenatal classes provided through the National Health Service. A cluster randomised design was used as antenatal classes rather than participants were randomly allocated to either treatment condition. Feasibility was assessed on the basis of pragmatic delivery and acceptability of the intervention. Data from 47 participants who received the intervention and 36 participants who did not was then compared to provide a preliminary indication of its effectiveness. Outcomes were assessed in terms of relationship satisfaction, couple communication and psychological distress. The intervention appeared feasible in terms of pragmatic delivery, rates of uptake and attendance at sessions. Participant evaluation forms also indicated that people were reasonably satisfied with the intervention and would recommend it to friends. Three significant phases × condition interactions were indicated using mixed-methods analyses of variance (ANOVAs); women in the intervention condition reported significantly less deterioration in relationship satisfaction (F(1, 44) = 3.11; p = 0.021; eta(2) = 0.07), while men in the intervention condition reported significantly less deterioration in couple communication (F(1, 35) = 2.59; p = 0.029; eta(2) = 0.08) and significant improvement in their experience of psychological distress (adjusted z = 1.99; p = 0.023; Cohen's d = 0.47). These positive preliminary indicators lend support to future large-scale investigation. PMID:25663309

  9. A Blinded, Randomised, Controlled Trial of Stapled Versus Tissue Glue Closure of Neck Surgery Incisions

    PubMed Central

    Ridgway, DM; Mahmood, F; Moore, L; Bramley, D; Moore, PJ

    2007-01-01

    INTRODUCTION Cosmetic acceptability of scar and neck mobility are important outcomes after collar line incision for neck surgery. This randomised, controlled trial compares these parameters in closures using tissue glue (Dermabond™, Ethicon, UK) and skin staples. PATIENTS AND METHODS Patients requiring a collar line incision were randomised to receiving tissue glue or staples for skin closure. Time for closure to be completed was recorded. Mobility of the neck was assessed using a visual analogue scale at 48 h and 1 week after surgery. At 6 weeks, cosmetic appearance was assessed using a linear 1–10 visual analogue scale by the patient, surgeon and an independent blinded assessor. Results were compared using appropriate statistical tests. RESULTS Glued (n = 14) and stapled (n = 15) closures were performed for hemithyroidectomy (n = 8 versus 6), sub-total thyroidectomy (n = 2 versus 4), total thyroidectomy (n = 1 versus 4) and parathyroidectomy (n = 3 versus 1). Closure with tissue glue took significantly longer than with staples (mean, 95 versus 28 s; P < 0.001). Neck mobility scores were comparable at 48 h and 1 week (mean, 4.8 versus 4.4; P = 0.552: and 2.7 versus 2.6; P = 0.886). Cosmetic appearance at 6 weeks was comparable when patient (mean, 1.7 versus 1.8; P = 0.898), surgeon (mean, 2.6 versus 2.3; P = 0.633) and independent assessment (mean, 1.4 versus 1.9; P = 0.365) was performed. CONCLUSIONS The use of glued skin closure may increase the duration of surgery but acceptable neck mobility and wound cosmesis can be achieved by the more rapid application of stapled skin closure in cervicotomy incisions. PMID:17394707

  10. Evaluation of a stroke family care worker: results of a randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed Central

    Dennis, M.; O'Rourke, S.; Slattery, J.; Staniforth, T.; Warlow, C.

    1997-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To examine the effect of contact with a stroke family care worker on the physical, social, and psychological status of stroke patients and their carers. DESIGN: Randomised controlled trial with broad entry criteria and blinded outcome assessment six months after randomisation. SETTING: A well organised stroke service in an Edinburgh teaching hospital. SUBJECTS: 417 patients with an acute stroke in the previous 30 days randomly allocated to be contacted by a stroke family care worker (210) or to receive standard care (207). The patients represented 67% of all stroke patients assessed at the hospital during the study period. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Patient completed Barthel index, Frenchay activities index, general health questionnaire, hospital anxiety and depression scale, social adjustment scale, mental adjustment to stroke scale, and patient satisfaction questionnaire; carer completed Frenchay activities index, general health questionnaire, hospital anxiety and depression scale, social adjustment scale, caregiving bassles scale, and carer satisfaction questionnaire. RESULTS: The groups were balanced for all important baseline variables. There were no significant differences in physical outcomes in patients or carers, though patients in the treatment group were possibly more helpless less well adjusted socially, and more depressed, whereas carers in the treatment group were possibly less hassled and anxious. However, both patients and carers in the group contacted by the stroke family care worker expressed significantly greater satisfaction with certain aspects of their care, in particular those related to communication and support. CONCLUSIONS: The introduction of a stroke family care worker improved patients' and their carers' satisfaction with services and may have had some effect on psychological and social outcomes but did not improve measures of patients' physical wellbeing. PMID:9133884

  11. A randomised controlled trial of morphine versus phenobarbitone for neonatal abstinence syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Jackson, L; Ting, A; Mckay, S; Galea, P; Skeoch, C

    2004-01-01

    Background: The incidence of neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS) has increased 10-fold over the last decade in Glasgow. In the Princess Royal Maternity Hospital, it now accounts for 17% of special care baby unit (SCBU) admissions. Objective: To compare opiate replacement therapy (morphine sulphate) with the present standard treatment (phenobarbitone) for management of NAS. The primary study end point was duration of pharmaceutical treatment. Secondary end points were the requirement for additional drugs and the requirement for SCBU admission. Design: Double blind, randomised controlled clinical trial. Methods: Differential diagnoses were excluded, and two consecutive Lipsitz scores > 4 defined NAS requiring treatment. Infants were randomised to receive morphine sulphate or phenobarbitone. Treatments were identical in appearance, odour, and volume. Increments, decrements, and discontinuation of treatments were protocol driven. Results: Seventy five infants participated. All mothers received opiate replacement therapy (methadone) during pregnancy and most used other drugs (n  =  62, 83%). No significant difference in maternal drug use patterns was observed between treatment groups. Median treatment duration was four days shorter with opiate replacement (8 v 12 days, Mann-Whitney U test, p  =  0.02). Phenobarbitone treated infants tended to require second line treatment (47% v 35%, χ2 test, p  =  0.11) and SCBU admission (62% v 30%, χ2 test, p = 0.04) more often. Conclusions: Opiate replacement therapy appears to be superior for management of symptomatic NAS when maternal opiate use is prevalent. The shorter treatment duration and lower requirement for higher intensity nursing may have significant cost implications. Tailoring NAS treatment to local maternal drug use may result in similar benefits. PMID:15210660

  12. Preliminary demonstration of a robust controller design method

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Anderson, L. R.

    1980-01-01

    Alternative computational procedures for obtaining a feedback control law which yields a control signal based on measurable quantitites are evaluated. The three methods evaluated are: (1) the standard linear quadratic regulator design model; (2) minimization of the norm of the feedback matrix, k via nonlinear programming subject to the constraint that the closed loop eigenvalues be in a specified domain in the complex plane; and (3) maximize the angles between the closed loop eigenvectors in combination with minimizing the norm of K also via the constrained nonlinear programming. The third or robust design method was chosen to yield a closed loop system whose eigenvalues are insensitive to small changes in the A and B matrices. The relationship between orthogonality of closed loop eigenvectors and the sensitivity of closed loop eigenvalues is described. Computer programs are described.

  13. Application of robust control to a rotary-wing aircraft

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Turkoglu, Ercument

    The thesis is concerned with the application of robust controller synthesis and analysis tools to a rotary-wing aircraft: the Bell 205 teetering-rotor helicopter. The Tioo loop-shaping approach is central to the work and two main issues concerned with its application will be considered. Firstly, the construction of diagonal (structured) and non- diagonal (unstructured) weighting functions will be considered. Secondly, the analysis of the implications of different weighting function structures in the controller implementation. A two stage cross-comparative analysis of a series of 1 Dof (Degree of Freedom) and 2 Dof controllers synthesized with both diagonal and non-diagonal weights using the Hqo loop- shaping technique will be presented for square and non-square multi input multi output, unstable, non-minimum phase and ill-conditioned models of the helicopter. Handling qualities of each control law augmented system will be assessed quantitatively and qualitatively. A quantitative analysis, in view of the specifications in ADS-33E, will be given based on a combination of flight data from in-flight tested controllers and, desk-top simula tions run on a fully augmented 12 Dof nonlinear helicopter model provided by QinetiQ, UK. A qualitative analysis will be given based on the pilot comments compiled (in view of the Cooper-Harper handling qualities rating scale) from the evaluated in-flight control laws.

  14. Quality control analytical methods: strategies to ensure a robust quality-control microbiology program.

    PubMed

    Griffiths, Tricia; Connors, Anne

    2013-01-01

    As the regulatory environment for compounding pharmacies continues to evolve, facilities can take immediate steps to strengthen their quality-control microbiology and environmental monitoring programs. Robust programs that are timely, comprehensive, and effective will minimize risk and help support positive patient outcomes. This article provides a roadmap for putting in place a robust quality-control microbiology program in the face of United States Pharmacopeia Chapter 797 standards, and highlights several technologies for environmental monitoring that support a successful program. PMID:23696174

  15. Randomised controlled trial of topical kanuka honey for the treatment of rosacea

    PubMed Central

    Braithwaite, Irene; Hunt, Anna; Riley, Judith; Fingleton, James; Kocks, Janwillem; Corin, Andrew; Helm, Colin; Sheahan, Davitt; Tofield, Christopher; Montgomery, Barney; Holliday, Mark; Weatherall, Mark; Beasley, Richard

    2015-01-01

    Objective To investigate the efficacy of topical 90% medical-grade kanuka honey and 10% glycerine (Honevo) as a treatment for rosacea. Design Randomised controlled trial with blinded assessment of primary outcome variable. Setting Outpatient primary healthcare population from 5 New Zealand sites. Participants 138 adults aged ≥16, with a diagnosis of rosacea, and a baseline blinded Investigator Global Assessment of Rosacea Severity Score (IGA-RSS) of ≥2. 69 participants were randomised to each treatment arm. 1 participant was excluded from the Honevo group, and 7 and 15 participants withdrew from the Honevo and control groups, respectively. Interventions Participants were randomly allocated 1:1 to Honevo or control cream (Cetomacrogol), applied twice daily for 8 weeks. Main outcome measures The primary outcome measure was the proportion of participants who had a ≥2 improvement in the 7-point IGA-RSS at week 8 compared to baseline. Secondary outcomes included change in IGA-RSS and subject-rated visual analogue score of change in severity (VAS-CS) on a 100 mm scale (0 mm ‘much worse’, 100 mm ‘much improved’) at weeks 2 and 8. Results 24/68 (34.3%) in the Honevo group and 12/69 (17.4%) in the control group had a ≥2 improvement in IGA-RSS at week 8 compared to baseline (relative risk 2.03; 95% CI 1.11 to 3.72, p=0.020). The change in IGA-RSS for Honevo compared to control at week 2 minus baseline was −1 (Hodges-Lehman estimate, 95% CI −1 to 0, p=0.03), and at week 8 minus baseline was −1 (Hodges-Lehman estimate, 95% CI −1 to 0, p=0.005). The VAS-CS at week 2 was 9.1 (95% CI 3.5 to 14.7), p=0.002, and at week 8 was 12.3 (95% CI 5.7 to 18.9)¸ p<0.001 for Honevo compared to control. Conclusions Honevo is an effective treatment for rosacea. Trial registration number This trial was registered in the Australian and New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry ACTRN12614000004662. PMID:26109117

  16. Multifactorial intervention for children with asthma and overweight (Mikado): study design of a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background In children, the prevalence’s of both obesity and asthma are disconcertingly high. Asthmatic children with obesity are characterised by less asthma control and a high need for asthma medication. As the obese asthmatic child is becoming more common in the clinical setting and the disease burden of the asthma-obesity phenotype is high, there is an increasing need for effective treatment in these children. In adults, weight reduction resulted in improved lung function, better asthma control and less need for asthma medication. In children this is hardly studied. The Mikado study aims to evaluate the effectiveness of a long term multifactorial weight reduction intervention, on asthma characteristics in children with asthma and a high body weight. Methods/design The Mikado study is a two-armed, randomised controlled trial. In total, 104 participants will be recruited via online questionnaires, pulmonary paediatricians, the youth department of the Municipal Health Services and cohorts of existing studies. All participants will be aged 6–16 years, will have current asthma, a Body Mass Index in the overweight or obesity range, and no serious comorbidities (such as diabetes, heart diseases). Participants in the intervention arm will receive a multifactorial intervention of 18 months consisting of sessions concerning sports, parental involvement, individual counselling and lifestyle advices including dietary advices and cognitive behavioural therapy. The control group will receive usual care. The primary outcome variables will include Forced Expiratory Volume in one second and Body Mass Index - Standard Deviation Score. Secondary outcomes will include other lung function parameters (including dynamic and static lung function parameters), asthma control, asthma-specific quality of life, use of asthma medication and markers of systemic inflammation and airway inflammation. Discussion In this randomised controlled trial we will study the potential of a

  17. The effectiveness of brief alcohol interventions delivered by community pharmacists: randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Norman, Ian; Whittlesea, Cate; Murrells, Trevor; McCambridge, Jim

    2016-01-01

    Background & Aims To undertake the first randomised controlled trial to evaluate the effectiveness of a brief intervention delivered by community pharmacists to reduce hazardous or harmful drinking. Design This parallel group individually randomised trial, allocated participants to brief alcohol intervention (n=205) or a leaflet-only control condition (n=202), with follow-up study after 3 months. Setting 16 community pharmacies in one London borough, UK. Participants 407 pharmacy customers (aged 18 or over) with AUDIT scores 8-19 inclusive. Intervention A brief motivational discussion of approximately 10 minutes duration for which 17 pharmacists received a half-day of training. Measurements Hazardous or harmful drinking was assessed using the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT) administered by telephone by a researcher blind to allocation status. The two primary outcomes were: 1) change in AUDIT total scores and 2) the proportions no longer hazardous or harmful drinkers (scoring <8) at three months. The four secondary outcomes were: the three sub-scale scores of the AUDIT (for consumption, problems and dependence), and health status according to the EQ-5D (a standardised instrument for use as a measure of health outcome). Findings At 3 months 326 (80% overall; 82% intervention, 78% control) participants were followed up. The difference in reduction in total AUDIT score (intervention minus control) was −0.57 95% CI −1.59 to 0.45, p = 0.28. The odds ratio for AUDIT <8 (control as reference) was 0.87 95% CI 0.50 to 1.51, p = 0.61). For two of the four secondary outcomes (dependence score: −0.46 95% CI −0.82 to −0.09, p = 0.014; health status score: −0.09 95% CI −0.16 to −0.02, p = 0.013) the control group did better, and in the other two there were no differences (consumption score: −0.05 95% CI −0.54 to 0.44, p = 0.85; non-dependence problems score: −0.13 95% CI −0.66 to 0.41). Sensitivity analyses did not change these findings

  18. Probiotics and dietary counselling contribute to glucose regulation during and after pregnancy: a randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Laitinen, Kirsi; Poussa, Tuija; Isolauri, Erika

    2009-06-01

    Balanced glucose metabolism ensures optimal fetal growth with long-term health implications conferred on both mother and child. We examined whether supplementation of probiotics with dietary counselling affects glucose metabolism in normoglycaemic pregnant women. At the first trimester of pregnancy 256 women were randomised to receive nutrition counselling to modify dietary intake according to current recommendations or as controls; the dietary intervention group was further randomised to receive probiotics (Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG and Bifidobacterium lactis Bb12; diet/probiotics) or placebo (diet/placebo) in a double-blind manner, whilst the control group received placebo (control/placebo). Blood glucose concentrations were lowest in the diet/probiotics group during pregnancy (baseline-adjusted means 4.45, 4.60 and 4.56 mmol/l in diet/probiotics, diet/placebo and control/placebo, respectively; P = 0.025) and over the 12 months' postpartum period (baseline-adjusted means 4.87, 5.01 and 5.02 mmol/l; P = 0.025). Better glucose tolerance in the diet/probiotics group was confirmed by a reduced risk of elevated glucose concentration compared with the control/placebo group (OR 0.31 (95 % CI 0.12, 0.78); P = 0.013) as well as by the lowest insulin concentration (adjusted means 7.55, 9.32 and 9.27 mU/l; P = 0.032) and homeostasis model assessment (adjusted means 1.49, 1.90 and 1.88; P = 0.028) and the highest quantitative insulin sensitivity check index (adjusted means 0.37, 0.35 and 0.35; P = 0.028) during the last trimester of pregnancy. The effects observed extended over the 12-month postpartum period. The present study demonstrated that improved blood glucose control can be achieved by dietary counselling with probiotics even in a normoglycaemic population and thus may provide potential novel means for the prophylactic and therapeutic management of glucose disorders. PMID:19017418

  19. The cumulative effects of Transcendental Meditation on cognitive function--a systematic review of randomised controlled trials.

    PubMed

    Canter, Peter H; Ernst, Edzard

    2003-11-28

    It is claimed that regular practice of Transcendental Meditation (TM) improves cognitive function and increases intelligence. This systematic review assesses the evidence from randomised controlled trials for cumulative effects of TM on cognitive function. Searches were made of electronic databases and the collected papers and official websites of the TM organisation. Only randomised controlled trials with objective outcome measures of the cumulative effects of TM on cognitive function were included. Trials that measured only acute effects of TM, or used only neurophysiological outcome measures were excluded. 107 articles reporting the effects of TM on cognitive function were identified and 10 met the inclusion criteria. Most were excluded because they used no controls or did not randomize subjects between interventions. Of the 10 trials included, 4 reported large positive effects of TM on cognitive function, four were completely negative, and 2 were largely negative in outcome. All 4 positive trials recruited subjects from among people favourably predisposed towards TM, and used passive control procedures. The other 6 trials recruited subjects with no specific interest in TM, and 5 of them used structured control procedures. The association observed between positive outcome, subject selection procedure and control procedure suggests that the large positive effects reported in 4 trials result from an expectation effect. The claim that TM has a specific and cumulative effect on cognitive function is not supported by the evidence from randomised controlled trials.

  20. Effects of American ginseng (Panax quinquefolius) on neurocognitive function: an acute, randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover study

    PubMed Central

    Ossoukhova, Anastasia; Owen, Lauren; Ibarra, Alvin; Pipingas, Andrew; He, Kan; Roller, Marc; Stough, Con

    2010-01-01

    Rationale Over the last decade, Asian ginseng (Panax ginseng) has been shown to improve aspects of human cognitive function. American ginseng (Panax quinquefolius) has a distinct ginsenoside profile from P. ginseng, promising cognitive enhancing properties in preclinical studies and benefits processes linked to human cognition. Objectives The availability of a highly standardised extract of P. quinquefolius (Cereboost™) led us to evaluate its neurocognitive properties in humans for the first time. Methods This randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover trial (N = 32, healthy young adults) assessed the acute mood, neurocognitive and glycaemic effects of three doses (100, 200 400 mg) of Cereboost™ (P. quinquefolius standardised to 10.65% ginsenosides). Participants' mood, cognitive function and blood glucose were measured 1, 3 and 6 h following administration. Results There was a significant improvement of working memory (WM) performance associated with P. quinquefolius. Corsi block performance was improved by all doses at all testing times. There were differential effects of all doses on other WM tasks which were maintained across the testing day. Choice reaction time accuracy and ‘calmness’ were significantly improved by 100 mg. There were no changes in blood glucose levels. Conclusions This preliminary study has identified robust working memory enhancement following administration of American ginseng. These effects are distinct from those of Asian ginseng and suggest that psychopharmacological properties depend critically on ginsenoside profiles. These results have ramifications for the psychopharmacology of herbal extracts and merit further study using different dosing regimens and in populations where cognition is fragile. PMID:20676609

  1. A Robust H ∞ Controller for an UAV Flight Control System.

    PubMed

    López, J; Dormido, R; Dormido, S; Gómez, J P

    2015-01-01

    The objective of this paper is the implementation and validation of a robust H ∞ controller for an UAV to track all types of manoeuvres in the presence of noisy environment. A robust inner-outer loop strategy is implemented. To design the H ∞ robust controller in the inner loop, H ∞ control methodology is used. The two controllers that conform the outer loop are designed using the H ∞ Loop Shaping technique. The reference vector used in the control architecture formed by vertical velocity, true airspeed, and heading angle, suggests a nontraditional way to pilot the aircraft. The simulation results show that the proposed control scheme works well despite the presence of noise and uncertainties, so the control system satisfies the requirements.

  2. A Robust H ∞ Controller for an UAV Flight Control System

    PubMed Central

    López, J.; Dormido, R.; Dormido, S.; Gómez, J. P.

    2015-01-01

    The objective of this paper is the implementation and validation of a robust H ∞ controller for an UAV to track all types of manoeuvres in the presence of noisy environment. A robust inner-outer loop strategy is implemented. To design the H ∞ robust controller in the inner loop, H ∞ control methodology is used. The two controllers that conform the outer loop are designed using the H ∞ Loop Shaping technique. The reference vector used in the control architecture formed by vertical velocity, true airspeed, and heading angle, suggests a nontraditional way to pilot the aircraft. The simulation results show that the proposed control scheme works well despite the presence of noise and uncertainties, so the control system satisfies the requirements. PMID:26221622

  3. A Robust H ∞ Controller for an UAV Flight Control System.

    PubMed

    López, J; Dormido, R; Dormido, S; Gómez, J P

    2015-01-01

    The objective of this paper is the implementation and validation of a robust H ∞ controller for an UAV to track all types of manoeuvres in the presence of noisy environment. A robust inner-outer loop strategy is implemented. To design the H ∞ robust controller in the inner loop, H ∞ control methodology is used. The two controllers that conform the outer loop are designed using the H ∞ Loop Shaping technique. The reference vector used in the control architecture formed by vertical velocity, true airspeed, and heading angle, suggests a nontraditional way to pilot the aircraft. The simulation results show that the proposed control scheme works well despite the presence of noise and uncertainties, so the control system satisfies the requirements. PMID:26221622

  4. Single port/incision laparoscopic surgery compared with standard three-port laparoscopic surgery for appendicectomy - a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Laparoscopic surgery has become the preferred approach for many procedures because of reduced post-operative pain, better recovery, shorter hospital stay and improved cosmesis. Single incision laparoscopic surgery is one of the many recent variants where either standard ports or a specially designed single multi-channel port is introduced through a single skin incision. While the cosmetic advantage of this is obvious, the evidence base for claims of reduced morbidity and better post-operative recovery is weak. This study aims to compare the effectiveness of single port/incision laparoscopic appendicectomy with standard three-port laparoscopic appendicectomy in adult patients at six weeks post-surgery. We also wish to assess the feasibility of a multicentre randomised controlled trial comparing single port/incision laparoscopic surgery with standard three-port laparoscopic surgery for other surgical techniques. Methods and design Patients diagnosed with suspected appendicitis and requiring surgical treatment will be randomised to receive either standard three-port or single incision laparoscopic surgery. Data will be collected from clinical notes, operation notes and patient reported questionnaires. The following outcomes will be considered: 1. Effectiveness of the surgical procedure in terms of: •patient reported outcomes •clinical outcomes •resource use 2. Feasibility of conducting a randomised controlled trial (RCT) in the emergency surgical setting by quantifying: •patient eligibility •randomisation acceptability •feasibility of blinding participants to the intervention received •completion rates of case report forms and patient reported questionnaires Trial registration ISRCTN66443895 (assigned 10 March 2011, first patient randomised 09 January 2011) PMID:23111090

  5. Robust parameter design for automatically controlled systems and nanostructure synthesis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dasgupta, Tirthankar

    2007-12-01

    This research focuses on developing comprehensive frameworks for developing robust parameter design methodology for dynamic systems with automatic control and for synthesis of nanostructures. In many automatically controlled dynamic processes, the optimal feedback control law depends on the parameter design solution and vice versa and therefore an integrated approach is necessary. A parameter design methodology in the presence of feedback control is developed for processes of long duration under the assumption that experimental noise factors are uncorrelated over time. Systems that follow a pure-gain dynamic model are considered and the best proportional-integral and minimum mean squared error control strategies are developed by using robust parameter design. The proposed method is illustrated using a simulated example and a case study in a urea packing plant. This idea is also extended to cases with on-line noise factors. The possibility of integrating feedforward control with a minimum mean squared error feedback control scheme is explored. To meet the needs of large scale synthesis of nanostructures, it is critical to systematically find experimental conditions under which the desired nanostructures are synthesized reproducibly, at large quantity and with controlled morphology. The first part of the research in this area focuses on modeling and optimization of existing experimental data. Through a rigorous statistical analysis of experimental data, models linking the probabilities of obtaining specific morphologies to the process variables are developed. A new iterative algorithm for fitting a Multinomial GLM is proposed and used. The optimum process conditions, which maximize the above probabilities and make the synthesis process less sensitive to variations of process variables around set values, are derived from the fitted models using Monte-Carlo simulations. The second part of the research deals with development of an experimental design methodology, tailor

  6. Effect of intermittent feedback control on robustness of human-like postural control system

    PubMed Central

    Tanabe, Hiroko; Fujii, Keisuke; Suzuki, Yasuyuki; Kouzaki, Motoki

    2016-01-01

    Humans have to acquire postural robustness to maintain stability against internal and external perturbations. Human standing has been recently modelled using an intermittent feedback control. However, the causality inside of the closed-loop postural control system associated with the neural control strategy is still unknown. Here, we examined the effect of intermittent feedback control on postural robustness and of changes in active/passive components on joint coordinative structure. We implemented computer simulation of a quadruple inverted pendulum that is mechanically close to human tiptoe standing. We simulated three pairs of joint viscoelasticity and three choices of neural control strategies for each joint: intermittent, continuous, or passive control. We examined postural robustness for each parameter set by analysing the region of active feedback gain. We found intermittent control at the hip joint was necessary for model stabilisation and model parameters affected the robustness of the pendulum. Joint sways of the pendulum model were partially smaller than or similar to those of experimental data. In conclusion, intermittent feedback control was necessary for the stabilisation of the quadruple inverted pendulum. Also, postural robustness of human-like multi-link standing would be achieved by both passive joint viscoelasticity and neural joint control strategies. PMID:26931281

  7. Effect of intermittent feedback control on robustness of human-like postural control system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tanabe, Hiroko; Fujii, Keisuke; Suzuki, Yasuyuki; Kouzaki, Motoki

    2016-03-01

    Humans have to acquire postural robustness to maintain stability against internal and external perturbations. Human standing has been recently modelled using an intermittent feedback control. However, the causality inside of the closed-loop postural control system associated with the neural control strategy is still unknown. Here, we examined the effect of intermittent feedback control on postural robustness and of changes in active/passive components on joint coordinative structure. We implemented computer simulation of a quadruple inverted pendulum that is mechanically close to human tiptoe standing. We simulated three pairs of joint viscoelasticity and three choices of neural control strategies for each joint: intermittent, continuous, or passive control. We examined postural robustness for each parameter set by analysing the region of active feedback gain. We found intermittent control at the hip joint was necessary for model stabilisation and model parameters affected the robustness of the pendulum. Joint sways of the pendulum model were partially smaller than or similar to those of experimental data. In conclusion, intermittent feedback control was necessary for the stabilisation of the quadruple inverted pendulum. Also, postural robustness of human-like multi-link standing would be achieved by both passive joint viscoelasticity and neural joint control strategies.

  8. Effect of intermittent feedback control on robustness of human-like postural control system.

    PubMed

    Tanabe, Hiroko; Fujii, Keisuke; Suzuki, Yasuyuki; Kouzaki, Motoki

    2016-01-01

    Humans have to acquire postural robustness to maintain stability against internal and external perturbations. Human standing has been recently modelled using an intermittent feedback control. However, the causality inside of the closed-loop postural control system associated with the neural control strategy is still unknown. Here, we examined the effect of intermittent feedback control on postural robustness and of changes in active/passive components on joint coordinative structure. We implemented computer simulation of a quadruple inverted pendulum that is mechanically close to human tiptoe standing. We simulated three pairs of joint viscoelasticity and three choices of neural control strategies for each joint: intermittent, continuous, or passive control. We examined postural robustness for each parameter set by analysing the region of active feedback gain. We found intermittent control at the hip joint was necessary for model stabilisation and model parameters affected the robustness of the pendulum. Joint sways of the pendulum model were partially smaller than or similar to those of experimental data. In conclusion, intermittent feedback control was necessary for the stabilisation of the quadruple inverted pendulum. Also, postural robustness of human-like multi-link standing would be achieved by both passive joint viscoelasticity and neural joint control strategies. PMID:26931281

  9. Effect of intermittent feedback control on robustness of human-like postural control system.

    PubMed

    Tanabe, Hiroko; Fujii, Keisuke; Suzuki, Yasuyuki; Kouzaki, Motoki

    2016-03-02

    Humans have to acquire postural robustness to maintain stability against internal and external perturbations. Human standing has been recently modelled using an intermittent feedback control. However, the causality inside of the closed-loop postural control system associated with the neural control strategy is still unknown. Here, we examined the effect of intermittent feedback control on postural robustness and of changes in active/passive components on joint coordinative structure. We implemented computer simulation of a quadruple inverted pendulum that is mechanically close to human tiptoe standing. We simulated three pairs of joint viscoelasticity and three choices of neural control strategies for each joint: intermittent, continuous, or passive control. We examined postural robustness for each parameter set by analysing the region of active feedback gain. We found intermittent control at the hip joint was necessary for model stabilisation and model parameters affected the robustness of the pendulum. Joint sways of the pendulum model were partially smaller than or similar to those of experimental data. In conclusion, intermittent feedback control was necessary for the stabilisation of the quadruple inverted pendulum. Also, postural robustness of human-like multi-link standing would be achieved by both passive joint viscoelasticity and neural joint control strategies.

  10. Robust control of mitotic spindle orientation in the developing epidermis

    PubMed Central

    Poulson, Nicholas D.

    2010-01-01

    Progenitor cells must balance self-amplification and production of differentiated progeny during development and homeostasis. In the epidermis, progenitors divide symmetrically to increase surface area and asymmetrically to promote stratification. In this study, we show that individual epidermal cells can undergo both types of division, and therefore, the balance is provided by the sum of individual cells’ choices. In addition, we define two control points for determining a cell’s mode of division. First is the expression of the mouse Inscuteable gene, which is sufficient to drive asymmetric cell division (ACD). However, there is robust control of division orientation as excessive ACDs are prevented by a change in the localization of NuMA, an effector of spindle orientation. Finally, we show that p63, a transcriptional regulator of stratification, does not control either of these processes. These data have uncovered two important regulatory points controlling ACD in the epidermis and allow a framework for analysis of how external cues control this important choice. PMID:21098114

  11. Self-Management education for adults with poorly controlled epILEpsy (SMILE (UK)): a randomised controlled trial protocol

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Teaching people with epilepsy to identify and manage seizure triggers, implement strategies to remember to take antiepileptic drugs, implement precautions to minimize risks during seizures, tell others what to do during a seizure and learn what to do during recovery may lead to better self-management. No teaching programme exists for adults with epilepsy in the United Kingdom although a number of surveys have shown patients want more information. Methods/Design This is a multicentre, pragmatic, parallel group randomised controlled trial to evaluate the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of a two-day Self-Management education for epILEpsy (SMILE (UK)), which was originally developed in Germany (MOSES). Four hundred and twenty eight adult patients who attended specialist epilepsy outpatient clinics at 15 NHS participating sites in the previous 12 months, and who fulfil other eligibility criteria will be randomised to receive the intervention (SMILE (UK) course with treatment as usual- TAU) or to have TAU only (control). The primary outcome is the effect on patient reported quality of life (QoL). Secondary outcomes are seizure frequency and psychological distress (anxiety and depression), perceived impact of epilepsy, adherence to medication, management of adverse effects from medication, and improved self-efficacy in management (mastery/control) of epilepsy. Within the trial there will be a nested qualitative study to explore users’ views of the intervention, including barriers to participation and the perceived benefits of the intervention. The cost-effectiveness of the intervention will also be assessed. Discussion This study will provide quantitative and qualitative evidence of the impact of a structured self management programme on quality of life and other aspects of clinical and cost effectiveness in adults with poorly controlled epilepsy. Trial registration Current Controlled Trials: ISRCTN57937389. PMID:24694207

  12. Randomised controlled trial of support from volunteer counsellors for mothers considering breast feeding

    PubMed Central

    Graffy, Jonathan; Taylor, Jane; Williams, Anthony; Eldridge, Sandra

    2004-01-01

    Objective To investigate whether offering volunteer support from counsellors in breast feeding would result in more women breast feeding. Design Randomised controlled trial. Setting 32 general practices in London and south Essex. Participants 720 women considering breast feeding. Main outcome measures Primary outcome was prevalence of any breast feeding at six weeks. Secondary outcomes were the proportion of women giving any breast feeds, or bottle feeds at four months, duration of any breast feeding, time to introduction of bottle feeds, and satisfaction with breast feeding. Results Offering support in breast feeding did not significantly increase the prevalence of any breast feeding to six weeks (65% (218/336) in the intervention group and 63% (213/336) in the control group; relative risk 1.02, 95% confidence interval 0.84 to 1.24). Survival analysis up to four months confirmed that neither duration of breast feeding nor time to introduction of formula feeds differed significantly between control and intervention groups. Not all women in the intervention group contacted counsellors postnatally, but 73% (123/179) of those who did rated them as very helpful. More women in the intervention group than in the control group said that their most helpful advice came from counsellors rather than from other sources. Conclusions Women valued the support of a counsellor in breast feeding, but the intervention did not significantly increase breastfeeding rates, perhaps because some women did not ask for help. PMID:14703543

  13. Comparison communities in a cluster randomised trial innovate in response to 'being controlled'.

    PubMed

    Hawe, Penelope; Riley, Therese; Gartrell, Alexandra; Turner, Karen; Canales, Claudia; Omstead, Darlene

    2015-05-01

    We conducted qualitative interviews among primary health care teams and community agencies in eight communities in Victoria, Australia which had (1) agreed to be part of a universal primary care and community development intervention to reduce post natal depression and promote maternal health; and (2) were randomised to the comparison arm. The purpose was to document their experience with and interpretation of the trial. Although 'control' in a controlled trial refers to the control of confounding of the trial result by factors other than allocation to the intervention, participants interpreted 'control' to mean restrictions on what they were allowed to do during the trial period. They had agreed not to use the Edinburgh Post Natal Depression Scale or the SF 36 in clinical practice and not to implement any of the elements of the intervention. We found that no elements of the intervention were implemented. However, the extension of the trial from three to five years made the trial agreement a strain. The imposition of trial conditions also encouraged a degree of lateral thinking and innovation in service delivery (quality improvement). This may have potentially contributed to the null trial results. The observations invite interrogation of intervention theory and consequent rethinking of the way contamination in a cluster trial is defined.

  14. Randomised controlled trial of animal facilitated therapy with dolphins in the treatment of depression

    PubMed Central

    Antonioli, Christian; Reveley, Michael A

    2005-01-01

    Objective To evaluate the effectiveness of animal facilitated therapy with dolphins, controlling for the influence of the natural setting, in the treatment of mild to moderate depression and in the context of the biophilia hypothesis. Setting The study was carried out in Honduras, and recruitment took place in the United States and Honduras. Design Single blind, randomised, controlled trial. Participants Outpatients, recruited through announcements on the internet, radio, newspapers, and hospitals. Results Of the 30 patients randomly assigned to the two groups of treatment, two dropped out of the treatment group after the first week and three withdrew their consent in the control group after they had been randomly allocated. For the participants who completed the study, the mean severity of the depressive symptoms was more reduced in the treatment group than in the control group (Hamilton rating scale for depression, P = 0.002; Beck depression inventory, P = 0.006). For the sample analysed by modified intention to treat and last observation carried forward, the mean differences for the Hamilton and Beck scores between the two groups was highly significant (P = 0.007 and P = 0.012, respectively). Conclusions The therapy was effective in alleviating symptoms of depression after two weeks of treatment. Animal facilitated therapy with dolphins is an effective treatment for mild to moderate depression, which is based on a holistic approach, through interaction with animals in nature. PMID:16308382

  15. Robust Thermal Control of Propulsion Lines for Space Missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bhandari, Pradeep

    2011-01-01

    A document discusses an approach to insulating propulsion lines for spacecraft. In spacecraft that have propulsion lines that are located externally with open bus architecture, the lines are typically insulated by Multi Layer Insulation (MLI) blankets. MLI on propulsion lines tends to have large and somewhat random variances in its heat loss properties (effective emittance) from one location to the next, which makes it an un-robust approach to control propulsion line temperatures. The approach described here consists of a clamshell design in which the inner surface of the shell is coated with low-emissivity aluminized Kapton tape, and the outer surface is covered with black tape. This clamshell completely encloses the propulsion line. The line itself is covered with its heater, which in turn, is covered completely with black tape. This approach would be low in heater power needs because even though the outer surface of the prop line (and its heater) is covered with black tape as well as the outer surface of the clamshell, the inner surface of the clamshell is covered with low-emissivity aluminized Kapton tape. Hence, the heat loss from the line will be small and comparable to the MLI based one. In terms of contamination changing the radiative properties of surfaces, since the clamshell s inner surface is always protected during handling and is only installed after all the work on the prop line has been completed, the controlling surface, which is the clamshell s inner surface, is always in pristine condition. This proposed design allows for a much more deterministic and predictable design using a very simple and implementable approach for thermal control. It also uses low heater power and is robust to handling and contamination during and after implementation.

  16. Development of Control Models and a Robust Multivariable Controller for Surface Shape Control

    SciTech Connect

    Winters, S

    2003-06-18

    Surface shape control techniques are applied to many diverse disciplines, such as adaptive optics, noise control, aircraft flutter control and satellites, with an objective to achieve a desirable shape for an elastic body by the application of distributed control forces. Achieving the desirable shape is influenced by many factors, such as, actuator locations, sensor locations, surface precision and controller performance. Building prototypes to complete design optimizations or controller development can be costly or impractical. This shortfall, puts significant value in developing accurate modeling and control simulation approaches. This thesis focuses on the field of adaptive optics, although these developments have the potential for application in many other fields. A static finite element model is developed and validated using a large aperture interferometer system. This model is then integrated into a control model using a linear least squares algorithm and Shack-Hartmann sensor. The model is successfully exercised showing functionality for various wavefront aberrations. Utilizing a verified model shows significant value in simulating static surface shape control problems with quantifiable uncertainties. A new dynamic model for a seven actuator deformable mirror is presented and its accuracy is proven through experiment. Bond graph techniques are used to generate the state space model of the multi-actuator deformable mirror including piezo-electric actuator dynamics. Using this verified model, a robust multi-input multi-output (MIMO) H{sub {infinity}} controller is designed and implemented. This controller proved superior performance as compared to a standard proportional-integral controller (PI) design.

  17. Identification, Uncertainty Characterization and Robust Control Synthesis Applied to Large Flexible Structures Control

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bayard, David S.; Chiang, Richard Y.

    1996-01-01

    This paper demonstrates an approach to frequency domain identification for the explicit purpose of designing robust H(infinity) controllers. The approach transforms raw experimental data into a plant set estimate directly usable by modern robust control design software(e.g., Matlab Robust Control Toolboxes [11][2]). A key issue in control design from raw data is the question of whether the controller will work when applied to the true system. The main feature fo this approach is that the resulting controller in guaranteed to work as designed(when applied to the true system) to a prescribed statistical confidence. While the overall methodology addresses key theoretical issues, it has at the same time been specifically designed to support practical implementations. A simulation example is included to demonstrate the overall approach.

  18. Telehealth for patients at high risk of cardiovascular disease: pragmatic randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    O’Cathain, Alicia; Thomas, Clare; Edwards, Louisa; Gaunt, Daisy; Dixon, Padraig; Hollinghurst, Sandra; Nicholl, Jon; Large, Shirley; Yardley, Lucy; Fahey, Tom; Foster, Alexis; Garner, Katy; Horspool, Kimberley; Man, Mei-See; Rogers, Anne; Pope, Catherine; Montgomery, Alan A

    2016-01-01

    Objective To assess whether non-clinical staff can effectively manage people at high risk of cardiovascular disease using digital health technologies. Design Pragmatic, multicentre, randomised controlled trial. Setting 42 general practices in three areas of England. Participants Between 3 December 2012 and 23 July 2013 we recruited 641 adults aged 40 to 74 years with a 10 year cardiovascular disease risk of 20% or more, no previous cardiovascular event, at least one modifiable risk factor (systolic blood pressure ≥140 mm Hg, body mass index ≥30, current smoker), and access to a telephone, the internet, and email. Participants were individually allocated to intervention (n=325) or control (n=316) groups using automated randomisation stratified by site, minimised by practice and baseline risk score. Interventions Intervention was the Healthlines service (alongside usual care), comprising regular telephone calls from trained lay health advisors following scripts generated by interactive software. Advisors facilitated self management by supporting participants to use online resources to reduce risk factors, and sought to optimise drug use, improve treatment adherence, and encourage healthier lifestyles. The control group comprised usual care alone. Main outcome measures The primary outcome was the proportion of participants responding to treatment, defined as maintaining or reducing their cardiovascular risk after 12 months. Outcomes were collected six and 12 months after randomisation and analysed masked. Participants were not masked. Results 50% (148/295) of participants in the intervention group responded to treatment compared with 43% (124/291) in the control group (adjusted odds ratio 1.3, 95% confidence interval 1.0 to 1.9; number needed to treat=13); a difference possibly due to chance (P=0.08). The intervention was associated with reductions in blood pressure (difference in mean systolic −2.7 mm Hg (95% confidence interval −4.7 to −0.6 mm Hg

  19. Effectiveness of topiramate for tobacco dependence in patients with depression; a randomised, controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Campayo, Javier García; Sobradiel, Natalia; Alda, Marta; Mas, Adoración; Andrés, Eva; Magallón, Rosa; Crucelaegui, Arantxa; Sanz, Beatriz

    2008-01-01

    Background Tobacco dependence management is a multi-component intervention that includes pharmacological treatments such as Nicotine Substitution Therapy (NST) or bupropion, and psychological therapy. There are some preliminary reports on topiramate efficacy for tobacco dependence. The aim of this study is to determine whether topiramate is as effective as the standard NST treatment for tobacco cessation at 1-year follow-up in patients with depression. Method/design Design: A randomised, controlled trial involving two groups, one of which is the control group consisting of patients on the standard pharmacological treatment for tobacco cessation (NST) and the other is the intervention group consisting of patients on topiramate as pharmacological treatment. Setting: 29 primary care health centres in the city of Zaragoza, Spain. Sample: 180 patients, aged 18–65 years, diagnosed with major depression, smoke more than 20 cigarettes/day, who have voluntarily asked for tobacco cessation therapy. Intervention: A multi-component programme for tobacco cessation is offered to all of the patients in the study. This programme is made up of pharmacological therapy + group cognitive-behavioural therapy. Pharmacological therapy consists of NST for the control group and topiramate (200 mg/day) for the intervention group. Psychological therapy is made up of 16 sessions of manualised group therapy. Measurements: Cessation will be assessed by patient self-declared abstinence, expired air carbon monoxide levels, and cotinine levels in saliva. Questionnaires on tobacco dependence, anxiety, depression, impulsiveness and self-efficacy will be administered. The interviewers will not know which group the patient belongs to (blind). The assessments will be carried out at baseline, D (cessation day) -1, D+1, weeks 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 8, 10 and 13, and months 4, 5, 6, 8, 10 and 12. Main variables: Tobacco cessation rates and tobacco dependence. Analysis: The analysis will be per intent to treat

  20. Educational Intervention Improves Anticoagulation Control in Atrial Fibrillation Patients: The TREAT Randomised Trial

    PubMed Central

    Clarkesmith, Danielle E.; Pattison, Helen M.; Lip, Gregory Y. H.; Lane, Deirdre A.

    2013-01-01

    Background Stroke prevention in atrial fibrillation (AF), most commonly with warfarin, requires maintenance of a narrow therapeutic target (INR 2.0 to 3.0) and is often poorly controlled in practice. Poor patient-understanding surrounding AF and its treatment may contribute to the patient’s willingness to adhere to recommendations. Method A theory-driven intervention, developed using patient interviews and focus groups, consisting of a one-off group session (1–6 patients) utilising an “expert-patient” focussed DVD, educational booklet, self-monitoring diary and worksheet, was compared in a randomised controlled trial (ISRCTN93952605) against usual care, with patient postal follow-ups at 1, 2, 6, and 12-months. Ninety-seven warfarin-naïve AF patients were randomised to intervention (n=46, mean age (SD) 72.0 (8.2), 67.4% men), or usual care (n=51, mean age (SD) 73.7 (8.1), 62.7% men), stratified by age, sex, and recruitment centre. Primary endpoint was time within therapeutic range (TTR); secondary endpoints included knowledge, quality of life, anxiety/depression, beliefs about medication, and illness perceptions. Main Findings Intervention patients had significantly higher TTR than usual care at 6-months (76.2% vs. 71.3%; p=0.035); at 12-months these differences were not significant (76.0% vs. 70.0%; p=0.44). Knowledge increased significantly across time (F (3, 47) = 6.4; p<0.01), but there were no differences between groups (F (1, 47) = 3.3; p = 0.07). At 6-months, knowledge scores predicted TTR (r=0.245; p=0.04). Patients’ scores on subscales representing their perception of the general harm and overuse of medication, as well as the perceived necessity of their AF specific medications predicted TTR at 6- and 12-months. Conclusions A theory-driven educational intervention significantly improves TTR in AF patients initiating warfarin during the first 6-months. Adverse clinical outcomes may potentially be reduced by improving patients’ understanding of

  1. Robust quantum control using smooth pulses and topological winding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barnes, Edwin; Wang, Xin; Das Sarma, S.

    2015-08-01

    The greatest challenge in achieving the high level of control needed for future technologies based on coherent quantum systems is the decoherence induced by the environment. Here, we present an analytical approach that yields explicit constraints on the driving field which are necessary and sufficient to ensure that the leading-order noise-induced errors in a qubit’s evolution cancel exactly. We derive constraints for two of the most common types of noise that arise in qubits: slow fluctuations of the qubit energy splitting and fluctuations in the driving field itself. By theoretically recasting a phase in the qubit’s wavefunction as a topological winding number, we can satisfy the noise-cancelation conditions by adjusting driving field parameters without altering the target state or quantum evolution. We demonstrate our method by constructing robust quantum gates for two types of spin qubit: phosphorous donors in silicon and nitrogen-vacancy centers in diamond.

  2. Pre-surgical sensorimotor training for patients undergoing total hip replacement: a randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Bitterli, R; Sieben, J M; Hartmann, M; de Bruin, E D

    2011-09-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate whether pre-operative, sensorimotor training results in improved physical function, quality of life, sensorimotor function and reduced disability in total hip replacement patients. 80 subjects awaiting total hip replacement at a Swiss hospital were recruited for this randomised controlled trial. The intervention group participated in a pre-operative home exercise sensorimotor training programme; the control group received no therapy. Primary outcome measure was physical function, secondary outcome measures were quality of life, disability and sensorimotor function. Outcomes were measured using generic and disease-specific questionnaires as well as objectively assessed balance ability. Measurements were taken one day before surgery and 10 days, 4 and 12 months after surgery. The intervention showed improved quality of life and sensorimotor function before surgery. These effects were lost following surgery. The intervention group experienced more disability at 4 months than the control group. At one year follow-up group-membership influenced quality of life scores depending on the measurement-time-point. It can be concluded that no useful effect was identified for a pre-operative sensory-motor training-programme. The psychological aspects following total hip replacement need to be considered in order to facilitate coping-strategies, reduce unrealistic expectations and increase satisfaction. PMID:21630176

  3. A lifestyle intervention for primary care patients with depression and anxiety: A randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Forsyth, Adrienne; Deane, Frank P; Williams, Peter

    2015-12-15

    This study aimed to evaluate the efficacy of a diet and exercise lifestyle intervention on mental health outcomes for patients currently being treated for depression and/or anxiety in primary care. Patients (n=119) referred by general practitioners to the 12-week randomised controlled trial were assigned to either an intervention of six visits to a dual qualified dietitian/exercise physiologist (DEP) where motivational interviewing and activity scheduling were used to engage patients in individually-tailored lifestyle change (focussed on diet and physical activity), or an attention control with scheduled telephone contact. Assessments conducted at baseline (n=94) and 12 weeks (n=60) were analysed with an intent-to-treat approach using linear mixed modelling. Significant improvement was found for both groups on Depression, Anxiety and Stress Scale (DASS) scores, measures of nutrient intake and total Australian modified Healthy Eating Index (Aust-HEI) scores. Significant differences between groups over time were found only for iron intake and body mass index. Patients participating in individual consultations with a dietitian were more likely to maintain or improve diet quality than those participating in an attention control. This study provides initial evidence to support the role of dietitians in the management of patients with depression and/or anxiety.

  4. Sunflower therapy for children with specific learning difficulties (dyslexia): a randomised, controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Bull, Leona

    2007-02-01

    The aim of the study was to determine the clinical and perceived effectiveness of the Sunflower therapy in the treatment of childhood dyslexia. The Sunflower therapy includes applied kinesiology, physical manipulation, massage, homeopathy, herbal remedies and neuro-linguistic programming. A multi-centred, randomised controlled trial was undertaken with 70 dyslexic children aged 6-13 years. The research study aimed to test the research hypothesis that dyslexic children 'feel better' and 'perform better' as a result of treatment by the Sunflower therapy. Children in the treatment group and the control group were assessed using a battery of standardised cognitive, Literacy and self-esteem tests before and after the intervention. Parents of children in the treatment group gave feedback on their experience of the Sunflower therapy. Test scores were compared using the Mann Whitney, and Wilcoxon statistical tests. While both groups of children improved in some of their test scores over time, there were no statistically significant improvements in cognitive or Literacy test performance associated with the treatment. However, there were statistically significant improvements in academic self-esteem, and reading self-esteem, for the treatment group. The majority of parents (57.13%) felt that the Sunflower therapy was effective in the treatment of learning difficulties. Further research is required to verify these findings, and should include a control group receiving a dummy treatment to exclude placebo effects. PMID:17210507

  5. Internet-Supported Physical Exercise Training for Persons with Multiple Sclerosis—A Randomised, Controlled Study

    PubMed Central

    Tallner, Alexander; Streber, René; Hentschke, Christian; Morgott, Marc; Geidl, Wolfgang; Mäurer, Mathias; Pfeifer, Klaus

    2016-01-01

    Physical exercise is effective in improving functional outcomes in persons with multiple sclerosis (pwMS). We evaluated the feasibility and effectiveness of internet-based exercise training (e-training) for pwMS on health-related quality of life (HrQoL). Secondary outcomes were muscle strength, aerobic capacity, lung function, physical activity, and fatigue. This is a randomised, controlled trial with a wait-list control group. Data were collected at baseline, after three and six months, and analysed using a hybrid linear model. One-hundred twenty-six pwMS participated in the home-based aerobic (1×/week) and strength training (2×/week) intervention that was supervised and documented via an internet-platform. The intervention group received e-training for six months, and the control group received e-training after a three months waiting period. Significant differences between the groups were only observed for muscle strength (knee flexion (effect size ES = 0.3, p = 0.003), knee extension (ES = 0.24, p = 0.015)), peak expiratory flow (ES = 0.2, p = 0.039), and sports activity (ES = 0.33, p = 0.001) after three months. E-training had no effect on HrQoL but did on muscle strength, lung function, and physical activity. It is a promising and feasible approach to facilitate large-scale, yet individual, training support. PMID:27706046

  6. Domiciliary occupational therapy for patients with stroke discharged from hospital: randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Gilbertson, Louise; Langhorne, Peter; Walker, Andrew; Allen, Ann; Murray, Gordon D

    2000-01-01

    Objective To establish if a brief programme of domiciliary occupational therapy could improve the recovery of patients with stroke discharged from hospital. Design Single blind randomised controlled trial. Setting Two hospital sites within a UK teaching hospital. Subjects 138 patients with stroke with a definite plan for discharge home from hospital. Intervention Six week domiciliary occupational therapy or routine follow up. Main outcome measures Nottingham extended activities of daily living score and “global outcome” (deterioration according to the Barthel activities of daily living index, or death). Results By eight weeks the mean Nottingham extended activities of daily living score in the intervention group was 4.8 points (95% confidence interval −0.5 to 10.0, P=0.08) greater than that of the control group. Overall, 16 (24%) intervention patients had a poor global outcome compared with 30 (42%) control patients (odds ratio 0.43, 0.21 to 0.89, P=0.02). These patterns persisted at six months but were not statistically significant. Patients in the intervention group were more likely to report satisfaction with a range of aspects of services. Conclusion The functional outcome and satisfaction of patients with stroke can be improved by a brief occupational therapy programme carried out in the patient's home immediately after discharge. Major benefits may not, however, be sustained. PMID:10698876

  7. The effect of foetal movement counting on maternal anxiety: A randomised, controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Delaram, M; Shams, S

    2016-01-01

    This study assessed the effect of foetal movement counting on maternal anxiety. In a randomised, controlled trial, 208 primigravida women with a singleton pregnancy were allocated either to perform daily foetal movement counting (n100) from 28 weeks ’ gestation or to follow standard Iranian antenatal care (n108). Maternal anxiety was measured by Spielberger State-Trait Anxiety Inventory. Statistical analysis was performed by SPSS (16.0). There was no significant difference in mean state and trait anxiety scores at 28 weeks ’ gestation; the difference was significant at 37 weeks ’ gestation in state anxiety score between the intervention and control groups (35.34 9.98 vs. 38.25 9.63, respectively, P0.001). A significant difference was found in mean trait anxiety score at 37 weeks ’ gestation between the two groups (35.88 8.19 vs. 39.15 9.25, respectively, P 0.008). Women who performed foetal movement counting from 28 to 37 weeks ’ gestation reported less anxiety compared with those in control group.

  8. Effectiveness of toughened glassware in terms of reducing injury in bars: a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Warburton, A.; Shepherd, J.

    2000-01-01

    Objective—To evaluate the effectiveness, in terms of injury prevention, of toughened pint glassware in bars. Design—Randomised controlled trial. Setting—A random sample of 57 bars in South Wales, West Midlands, and West of England. Subjects—A total of 1229 bar workers. Intervention—Complete replacement of pint glasses with annealed (control) or toughened (intervention) glassware. Main outcome measures—Bar staff injuries recorded monthly: number, site, and severity (lifestyle impact; treatment need) of injuries. Results—Ninety eight bar staff experienced 115 injuries: 43 in the control group, 72 in the intervention group. Adjusting for people at risk gave a relative risk (RR) of 1.48 (confidence interval (CI) 1.02 to 2.15). Similarly, adjusting for hours worked gave RR 1.57 (CI 1.08 to 2.29). Thus, injury rate was 60% higher in the intervention group (p<0.05), with no significant difference in severity. Most were hand injuries requiring first aid. Injuries tended to occur simultaneously in more than one body part in the intervention group, reportedly caused by spontaneous disintegration of toughened glassware. Impact resistance testing showed the energy required to break annealed glass (1.8 ± 0.2 J) was greater than that for toughened glass (1.4 ± 0.2 J), though the difference was not significant. Conclusions—Glass with lower impact resistance caused more injuries. "Toughened" glassware had lower impact resistance. Standards for toughening need to be developed. PMID:10728540

  9. Acupuncture point injection treatment of primary dysmenorrhoea: a randomised, double blind, controlled study

    PubMed Central

    Wade, C; Wang, L; Zhao, W J; Cardini, F; Kronenberg, F; Gui, S Q; Ying, Z; Zhao, N Q; Chao, M T; Yu, J

    2016-01-01

    Objective To determine if injection of vitamin K3 in an acupuncture point is optimal for the treatment of primary dysmenorrhoea, when compared with 2 other injection treatments. Setting A Menstrual Disorder Centre at a public hospital in Shanghai, China. Participants Chinese women aged 14–25 years with severe primary dysmenorrhoea for at least 6 months not relieved by any other treatment were recruited. Exclusion criteria were the use of oral contraceptives, intrauterine devices or anticoagulant drugs, pregnancy, history of abdominal surgery, participation in other therapies for pain and diagnosis of secondary dysmenorrhoea. Eighty patients with primary dysmenorrhoea, as defined on a 4-grade scale, completed the study. Two patients withdrew after randomisation. Interventions A double-blind, double-dummy, randomised controlled trial compared vitamin K3 acupuncture point injection to saline acupuncture point injection and vitamin K3 deep muscle injection. Patients in each group received 3 injections at a single treatment visit. Primary and secondary outcome measures The primary outcome was the difference in subjective perception of pain as measured by an 11 unit Numeric Rating Scale (NRS). Secondary measurements were Cox Pain Intensity and Duration scales and the consumption of analgesic tablets before and after treatment and during 6 following cycles. Results Patients in all 3 groups experienced pain relief from the injection treatments. Differences in NRS measured mean pain scores between the 2 active control groups were less than 1 unit (−0.71, CI −1.37 to −0.05) and not significant, but the differences in average scores between the treatment hypothesised to be optimal and both active control groups (1.11, CI 0.45 to 1.78) and (1.82, CI 1.45 to 2.49) were statistically significant in adjusted mixed-effects models. Menstrual distress and use of analgesics were diminished for 6 months post-treatment. Conclusions Acupuncture point injection of

  10. Physical fitness training in Subacute Stroke (PHYS-STROKE) - study protocol for a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Given the rising number of strokes worldwide, and the large number of individuals left with disabilities after stroke, novel strategies to reduce disability, increase functions in the motor and the cognitive domains, and improve quality of life are of major importance. Physical activity is a promising intervention to address these challenges but, as yet, there is no study demonstrating definite outcomes. Our objective is to assess whether additional treatment in the form of physical fitness-based training for patients early after stroke will provide benefits in terms of functional outcomes, in particular gait speed and the Barthel Index (co-primary outcome measures) reflecting activities of daily living (ADL). We will gather secondary functional outcomes as well as mechanistic parameters in an exploratory approach. Methods/Design Our phase III randomised controlled trial will recruit 215 adults with moderate to severe limitations of walking and ADL 5 to 45 days after stroke onset. Participants will be stratified for the prognostic variables of “centre”, “age”, and “stroke severity”, and randomly assigned to one of two groups. The interventional group receives physical fitness training delivered as supported or unsupported treadmill training (cardiovascular active aerobic training; five times per week, over 4 weeks; each session 50 minutes; total of 20 additional physical fitness training sessions) in addition to standard rehabilitation treatment. The control intervention consists of relaxation sessions (non-cardiovascular active; five times per week week, over 4 weeks; each session 50 minutes) in addition to standard rehabilitation treatment. Co-primary efficacy endpoints will be gait speed (in m/s, 10 m walk) and the Barthel Index (100 points total) at 3 months post-stroke, compared to baseline measurements. Secondary outcomes include standard measures of quality of life, sleep and mood, cognition, arm function, maximal oxygen uptake

  11. Evaluation of an online Diabetes Needs Assessment Tool (DNAT) for health professionals: a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    Background Continuous medical education is traditionally reliant to a large extent on self-directed learning based on individuals' perceived learning priorities. Evidence suggests that this ability to self-assess is limited, and more so in the least competent. Therefore, it may be of benefit to utilise some form of external assessment for this purpose. Many diabetes educational programmes have been introduced, but few have been assessed for their benefit in a systematic manner. As diabetes is an increasingly prevalent disease, methods for the dissemination and understanding of clinical guidelines need to be explored for their effectiveness. This paper describes the study design of a randomised controlled trial to evaluate the effectiveness of using an interactive online Diabetes Needs Assessment Tool (DNAT), that builds a learning curriculum based on identified knowledge gaps, compared with conventional self-directed learning. The study assesses the effect of these interventions on health professionals' knowledge of diabetes management, evaluates the acceptability of this process of learning and self-reported changes in clinical practice as a result of this novel educational process. Methods Following a baseline assessment, participants will be randomised to undergo a 4-month learning period where they will either be given access to the diabetes learning modules alone (control group) or a Diabetes Needs Assessment Tool (DNAT) plus the diabetes learning modules (intervention group). On completion of the DNAT, a personalised learning report will be created for each participant identifying needs alongside individualised recommendations of the most appropriate learning modules to meet those requirements. All participants will complete a Diabetes Knowledge Test before and immediately after the allocated learning and the primary outcome will be the state of knowledge at 4 months. Learners will also be surveyed immediately after the learning period to assess the

  12. The chronic kidney disease Water Intake Trial (WIT): results from the pilot randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Clark, William F; Sontrop, Jessica M; Huang, Shih-Han; Gallo, Kerri; Moist, Louise; House, Andrew A; Weir, Matthew A; Garg, Amit X

    2013-01-01

    Background and objectives Increased water intake may benefit kidney function. Prior to initiating a larger randomised controlled trial (RCT), we examined the safety and feasibility of asking adults with chronic kidney disease (CKD) to increase their water intake. Design, setting, participants and measurements Beginning in October 2012, we randomly assigned 29 adults with stage 3 CKD (estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) 30–60 mL/min/1.73 m2 and albuminuria) to one of the two groups of water intake: hydration (n=18) or standard (n=11). We asked the hydration group to increase their water intake by 1.0–1.5 L/day (in addition to usual intake, depending on sex and weight) for 6 weeks, while the control group carried on with their usual intake. Participants collected a 24 h urine sample at baseline and at 2 and 6 weeks after randomisation. Our primary outcome was the between-group difference in change in 24 h urine volume from baseline to 6 weeks. Results (63%)of participants were men, 81% were Caucasians and the average age was 61 years (SD 14 years). The average baseline eGFR was 40 mL/min/1.73 m2 (SD 11 mL/min/1.73 m2); the median albumin to creatinine ratio was 19 mg/mmol (IQR 6–74 mg/mmol). Between baseline and 6-week follow-up, the hydration group's average 24 h urine volume increased by 0.7 L/day (from 2.3 to 3.0 L/day) and the control group's 24 h urine decreased by 0.3 L/day (from 2.0 to 1.7 L/day; between-group difference in change: 0.9 L/day (95% CI 0.4 to 1.5; p=0.002)). We found no significant changes in urine, serum osmolality or electrolyte concentrations, or eGFR. No serious adverse events or changes in quality of life were reported. Conclusions A pilot RCT indicates adults with stage 3 CKD can successfully and safely increase water intake by up to 0.7 L/day in addition to usual fluid intake. Trial registration Registered with Clinical Trials—government identifier NCT01753466. PMID:24362012

  13. A Robust Reinforcement Learning Control Design Method for Nonlinear System with Partially Unknown Structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakano, Kazuhiro; Obayashi, Masanao; Kuremoto, Takashi; Kobayashi, Kunikazu

    We propose a robust control system which has robustness for disturbance and can deal with a nonlinear system with partially unknown structure by fusing reinforcement learning and robust control theory. First, we solved an optimal control problem without using unknown part of functions of the system, using neural network and the repetition learning of reinforcement learning algorithm. Second, we built the robust reinforcement learning control system which permits uncertainty and has robustness for disturbance by fusing the idea of H infinity control theory with above system.

  14. Robust, Flexible Motion Control for the Mars Explorer Rovers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Maimone, Mark; Biesiadecki, Jeffrey

    2007-01-01

    The Mobility Flight Software, running on computers aboard the Mars Explorer Rover (MER) robotic vehicles Spirit and Opportunity, affords the robustness and flexibility of control to enable safe and effective operation of these vehicles in traversing natural terrain. It can make the vehicles perform specific maneuvers commanded from Earth, and/or can autonomously administer multiple aspects of mobility, including choice of motion, measurement of actual motion, and even selection of targets to be approached. Motion of a vehicle can be commanded by use of multiple layers of control, ranging from motor control at a low level, direct drive operations (e.g., motion along a circular arc, motion along a straight line, or turn in place) at an intermediate level to goal-position driving (that is, driving to a specified location) at a high level. The software can also perform high-level assessment of terrain and selection of safe paths across the terrain: this involves processing of the digital equivalent of a local traversability map generated from images acquired by stereoscopic pairs of cameras aboard the vehicles. Other functions of the software include interacting with the rest of the MER flight software and performing safety checks.

  15. Robust Task Space Trajectory Tracking Control of Robotic Manipulators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Galicki, M.

    2016-08-01

    This work deals with the problem of the accurate task space trajectory tracking subject to finite-time convergence. Kinematic and dynamic equations of a redundant manipulator are assumed to be uncertain. Moreover, globally unbounded disturbances are allowed to act on the manipulator when tracking the trajectory by the end-effector. Furthermore, the movement is to be accomplished in such a way as to reduce both the manipulator torques and their oscillations thus eliminating the potential robot vibrations. Based on suitably defined task space non-singular terminal sliding vector variable and the Lyapunov stability theory, we propose a class of chattering-free robust controllers, based on the estimation of transpose Jacobian, which seem to be effective in counteracting both uncertain kinematics and dynamics, unbounded disturbances and (possible) kinematic and/or algorithmic singularities met on the robot trajectory. The numerical simulations carried out for a redundant manipulator of a SCARA type consisting of the three revolute kinematic pairs and operating in a two-dimensional task space, illustrate performance of the proposed controllers as well as comparisons with other well known control schemes.

  16. Identification and robust control of linear parameter-varying systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Lawton Hubert

    This dissertation deals with linear parameter-varying (LPV) systems: linear dynamic systems that depend on time-varying parameters. These systems appear in gain scheduling problems, and much recent research has been devoted to their prospective usefulness for systematic gain scheduling. We primarily focus on robust control of uncertain LPV systems and identification of LPV systems that are modelable as linear-fractional transformations (LFTs). Using parameter-dependent quadratic Lyapunov functions, linear matrix inequalities (LMIs), and scaled small-gain arguments, we define notions of stability and induced-{cal L}sb2 performance for uncertain LPV systems whose parameters and rates of parameter variation satisfy given bounds. The performance criterion involves integral quadratic constraints and implies naturally parameter-dependent induced-{cal L}sb2 norm bounds. We formulate and solve an {cal H}sb{infty}-like control problem for an LPV plant with measurable parameters and an "Output/State Feedback" structure: the feedback outputs include some noiselessly measured states. Necessary and sufficient solvability conditions reduce to LMIs that can be solved approximately using finite-dimensional convex programming. Reduced-order LPV controllers are constructed from the LMI solutions. A D-K iteration-like procedure provides robustness to structured, time-varying, parametric uncertainty. The design method is applied to a motivating example: flight control for the F-16 VISTA throughout its subsonic flight envelope. Parameter-dependent weights and {cal H}sb{infty} design principles describe the performance objectives. Closed-loop responses exhibited by nonlinear simulations indicate satisfactory flying qualities. Identification of linear-fractional LPV systems is treated using maximum-likelihood parameter estimation. Computing the gradient and Hessian of a maximum-likelihood cost function reduces to simulating one LPV filter per identified parameter. We use nonlinear

  17. Helmet therapy in infants with positional skull deformation: randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    van Vlimmeren, Leo A; Groothuis-Oudshoorn, Catharina G M; Van der Ploeg, Catharina P B; IJzerman, Maarten J; Boere-Boonekamp, Magda M

    2014-01-01

    Objective To determine the effectiveness of helmet therapy for positional skull deformation compared with the natural course of the condition in infants aged 5-6 months. Design Pragmatic, single blinded, randomised controlled trial (HEADS, HElmet therapy Assessment in Deformed Skulls) nested in a prospective cohort study. Setting 29 paediatric physiotherapy practices; helmet therapy was administered at four specialised centres. Participants 84 infants aged 5 to 6 months with moderate to severe skull deformation, who were born after 36 weeks of gestation and had no muscular torticollis, craniosynostosis, or dysmorphic features. Participants were randomly assigned to helmet therapy (n=42) or to natural course of the condition (n=42) according to a randomisation plan with blocks of eight. Interventions Six months of helmet therapy compared with the natural course of skull deformation. In both trial arms parents were asked to avoid any (additional) treatment for the skull deformation. Main outcome measures The primary outcome was change in skull shape from baseline to 24 months of age assessed using plagiocephalometry (anthropometric measurement instrument). Change scores for plagiocephaly (oblique diameter difference index) and brachycephaly (cranioproportional index) were each included in an analysis of covariance, using baseline values as the covariate. Secondary outcomes were ear deviation, facial asymmetry, occipital lift, and motor development in the infant, quality of life (infant and parent measures), and parental satisfaction and anxiety. Baseline measurements were performed in infants aged between 5 and 6 months, with follow-up measurements at 8, 12, and 24 months. Primary outcome assessment at 24 months was blinded. Results The change score for both plagiocephaly and brachycephaly was equal between the helmet therapy and natural course groups, with a mean difference of −0.2 (95% confidence interval −1.6 to 1.2, P=0.80) and 0.2 (−1.7 to 2.2, P=0

  18. Feasibility study of an integrated stroke self-management programme: a cluster-randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Fiona; Gage, Heather; Drummond, Avril; Bhalla, Ajay; Grant, Robert; Lennon, Sheila; McKevitt, Christopher; Riazi, Afsane; Liston, Matthew

    2016-01-01

    Objectives To test the feasibility of conducting a controlled trial into the effectiveness of a self-management programme integrated into stroke rehabilitation. Design A feasibility cluster-randomised design was utilised with stroke rehabilitation teams as units of randomisation. Setting Community-based stroke rehabilitation teams in London. Participants 78 patients with a diagnosis of stroke requiring community based rehabilitation. Intervention The intervention consisted of an individualised approach to self-management based on self-efficacy. Clinicians were trained to integrate defined self-management principles into scheduled rehabilitation sessions, supported by a patient-held workbook. Main outcomes measures Patient measures of quality of life, mood, self-efficacy and functional capacity, and health and social care utilisation, were carried out by blinded assessors at baseline, 6 weeks and 12 weeks. Fidelity and acceptability of the delivery were evaluated by observation and interviews. Results 4 community stroke rehabilitation teams were recruited, and received a total of 317 stroke referrals over 14 months. Of these, 138 met trial eligibility criteria and 78 participants were finally recruited (56.5%). Demographic and baseline outcome measures were similar between intervention and control arms, with the exception of age. All outcome measures were feasible to use and clinical data at 12 weeks were completed for 66/78 participants (85%; 95% CI 75% to 92%). There was no significant difference in any of the outcomes between the arms of the trial, but measures of functional capacity and self-efficacy showed responsiveness to the intervention. Observation and interview data confirmed acceptability and fidelity of delivery according to predetermined criteria. Costs varied by site. Conclusions It was feasible to integrate a stroke self-management programme into community rehabilitation, using key principles. Some data were lost to follow-up, but overall

  19. Eating disinhibition and vagal tone moderate the postprandial response to glycemic load: a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Young, Hayley A.; Watkins, Heather

    2016-01-01

    Reducing the glycemic load (GL) of the diet may benefit appetite control but its utility is complicated by psychological influences on eating. Disinhibited behaviour, a risk factor for overconsumption, is characterized by reduced prefrontal cortex activity, which in turn modulates vagal tone; a phenomenon associated with glucoregulation. This double blind randomised controlled trial explored for the first time the influence of disinhibited eating and vagal tone (heart rate variability (HRV)) on hunger and the postprandial response to GL. Blood glucose (BG) and hunger were measured 30 and 150 min after consumption of water, glucose or isomaltulose (low glycemic sugar). After consuming glucose, independently of BMI or habitual diet, those with the highest levels of disinhibition had higher BG levels after thirty minutes (B = 0.192, 95% CI LL. 086, UL 0.297), and lower BG after one hundred and fifty minutes (B = −0.240, 95% CI LL −0.348, UL −0.131). BG was related to hunger but only in low disinhibited eaters. Disinhibited eaters were characterised by a reduced HRV which was related to greater BG excursions (B = 0.407, 95% CI LL 0.044, UL 1.134). These findings highlight novel mechanisms by which disinhibited eating leads to obesity and insulin resistance. This trial was registered at clinicaltrials.gov NCT02827318. PMID:27761024

  20. Recovery of chronically lame dairy cows following treatment for claw horn lesions: a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Thomas, H. J.; Remnant, J. G.; Bollard, N. J.; Burrows, A.; Whay, H. R.; Bell, N. J.; Mason, C.; Huxley, J. N.

    2016-01-01

    A positively controlled, randomised controlled trial (RCT) was undertaken to test recovery of cows with claw horn lesions resulting in lameness of greater than two weeks duration. Cows on seven commercial farms were mobility scored fortnightly and selected by lameness severity and chronicity. Study cows all received a therapeutic trim then random allocation of: no further treatment (trim only (TRM)), plastic shoe (TS) or plastic shoe and NSAID (TSN). Recovery was assessed by mobility score at 42 (±4) days post treatment by an observer blind to treatment group. Multivariable analysis showed no significant effect of treatment with an almost identical, low response rate to treatment across all groups (Percentage non-lame at outcome: TRM – 15 per cent, TS – 15 per cent, TSN – 16 per cent). When compared with results of a similar RCT on acutely lame cows, where response rates to treatment were substantially higher, it can be concluded that any delay in treatment is likely to reduce the rate of recovery, suggesting early identification and treatment is key. Thirty-eight per cent of animals treated in this study were lame on the contralateral limb at outcome suggesting that both hindlimbs should be examined and a preventive or if necessary a therapeutic foot trim performed when lameness is identified particularly if the duration of lameness is unknown. PMID:26811441

  1. Acupuncture for the Treatment of Oculomotor Paralysis: A Pilot Randomised Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    Bi, Jia-Qi; Li, Wei; Yang, Qi; Li, Bao-lin; Meng, Qing-Gang; Liu, Yu-fu

    2016-01-01

    This study consisted of a single centre randomised controlled trial with two parallel arms: an acupuncture group (n = 20) with 27 affected eyes and a sham group (n = 20) with 23 affected eyes. Participants in the acupuncture group received acupuncture treatment once daily, three times weekly for four weeks. Participants assigned to the control group received sham acupuncture, the same protocol as that used for the acupuncture group but without insertion of needles into the skin. The primary outcome measure was the cervical range of motion (CROM) score. Secondary outcome measures were the palpebral fissure size, response rate, and adverse events. All 40 participants completed the study. In the comparison of acupuncture and sham acupuncture, a significant difference was observed between acupuncture and sham acupuncture in CROM score (21.37 ± 15.16 and 32.21 ± 19.54, resp.) (P < 0.05) and palpebral fissure size (7.19 ± 2.94 and 5.41 ± 2.45, resp.) (P < 0.05). Response rate was also significantly different in the acupuncture group (P < 0.05). No adverse events were reported in both groups in this study. In summary, it was demonstrated that acupuncture had a feasibility positive effect on oculomotor paralysis. PMID:27313646

  2. Veterinary homeopathy: systematic review of medical conditions studied by randomised placebo-controlled trials.

    PubMed

    Mathie, Robert T; Clausen, Jürgen

    2014-10-18

    A systematic review of randomised controlled trials (RCTs) of veterinary homeopathy has not previously been undertaken. Using Cochrane methods, this review aims to assess risk of bias and to quantify the effect size of homeopathic intervention compared with placebo for each eligible peer-reviewed trial. Judgement in seven assessment domains enabled a trial's risk of bias to be designated as low, unclear or high. A trial was judged to comprise reliable evidence if its risk of bias was low or was unclear in specified domains. A trial was considered to be free of vested interest if it was not funded by a homeopathic pharmacy. The 18 eligible RCTs were disparate in nature, representing four species and 11 different medical conditions. Reliable evidence, free from vested interest, was identified in two trials: homeopathic Coli had a prophylactic effect on porcine diarrhoea (odds ratio 3.89, 95 per cent confidence interval [CI], 1.19 to 12.68, P=0.02); and individualised homeopathic treatment did not have a more beneficial effect on bovine mastitis than placebo intervention (standardised mean difference -0.31, 95 per cent CI, -0.97 to 0.34, P=0.35). Mixed findings from the only two placebo-controlled RCTs that had suitably reliable evidence precluded generalisable conclusions about the efficacy of any particular homeopathic medicine or the impact of individualised homeopathic intervention on any given medical condition in animals.

  3. Do community football players wear allocated protective equipment? Descriptive results from a randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Braham, R A; Finch, C F

    2004-06-01

    Before protective equipment can be adopted as an effective sports safety intervention, its protective effects in reducing the incidence and severity of injury need to be demonstrated, Importantly, it also needs to be well accepted by the players. The Australian Football Injury Prevention Project (AFIPP) was a large scale community-based randomised controlled trial to assess the effectiveness of headgear and mouthguards in preventing head/neck/dental injuries in Australian Football. A subcomponent of this study was to assess the extent to which community football players complied with the requirement to wear protective headgear and/or mouthguards, as this equipment is not compulsory in this sport. Three hundred and one community football players from 23 teams were randomly allocated to one of three protective equipment intervention arms or one control arm. Protective equipment usage was measured by a primary data collector at each training and game session during the 2001 playing season. Mouthguard use was higher than headgear use, with the highest usage for both being measured during games rather than training. Although many players use mouthguards, particularly in games, most do not wear headgear. Given the low adoption of headgear, other strategies to prevent head injuries need further investigation.

  4. Effect of soya protein on blood pressure: a meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials.

    PubMed

    Dong, Jia-Yi; Tong, Xing; Wu, Zhi-Wei; Xun, Peng-Cheng; He, Ka; Qin, Li-Qiang

    2011-08-01

    Observational studies have indicated that soya food consumption is inversely associated with blood pressure (BP). Evidence from randomised controlled trials (RCT) on the BP-lowering effects of soya protein intake is inconclusive. We aimed to evaluate the effectiveness of soya protein intake in lowering BP. The PubMed database was searched for published RCT in the English language through to April 2010, which compared a soya protein diet with a control diet. We conducted a random-effects meta-analysis to examine the effects of soya protein on BP. Subgroup and meta-regression analyses were performed to explore possible explanations for heterogeneity among trials. Meta-analyses of twenty-seven RCT showed a mean decrease of 2·21 mmHg (95 % CI - 4·10, - 0·33; P = 0·021) for systolic BP (SBP) and 1·44 mmHg (95 % CI - 2·56, - 0·31; P = 0·012) for diastolic BP (DBP), comparing the participants in the soya protein group with those in the control group. Soya protein consumption significantly reduced SBP and DBP in both hypertensive and normotensive subjects, and the reductions were markedly greater in hypertensive subjects. Significant and greater BP reductions were also observed in trials using carbohydrate, but not milk products, as the control diet. Meta-regression analyses further revealed a significantly inverse association between pre-treatment BP and the level of BP reductions. In conclusion, soya protein intake, compared with a control diet, significantly reduces both SBP and DBP, but the BP reductions are related to pre-treatment BP levels of subjects and the type of control diet used as comparison.

  5. No evidence of a control group response in exercise randomised controlled trials in people with schizophrenia: A systematic review and meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    Stubbs, Brendon; Rosenbaum, Simon; Ward, Philip B; Barreto Schuch, Felipe; Vancampfort, Davy

    2015-10-30

    Increased control group responses (CGR) make it more difficult to establish the effectiveness of interventions to improve symptoms in schizophrenia. We conducted a meta-analysis of CGR within randomised control trials (RCTs) comparing exercise and a control condition in people with schizophrenia. We found no evidence of a CGR for total, positive or negative symptoms. Control group responses do not negatively impact exercise RCTs that have clearly demonstrated substantial beneficial effects of exercise in this population.

  6. PACE - The first placebo controlled trial of paracetamol for acute low back pain: design of a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Clinical practice guidelines recommend that the initial treatment of acute low back pain (LBP) should consist of advice to stay active and regular simple analgesics such as paracetamol 4 g daily. Despite this recommendation in all international LBP guidelines there are no placebo controlled trials assessing the efficacy of paracetamol for LBP at any dose or dose regimen. This study aims to determine whether 4 g of paracetamol daily (in divided doses) results in a more rapid recovery from acute LBP than placebo. A secondary aim is to determine if ingesting paracetamol in a time-contingent manner is more effective than paracetamol taken when required (PRN) for recovery from acute LBP. Methods/Design The study is a randomised double dummy placebo controlled trial. 1650 care seeking people with significant acute LBP will be recruited. All participants will receive advice to stay active and will be randomised to 1 of 3 treatment groups: time-contingent paracetamol dose regimen (plus placebo PRN paracetamol), PRN paracetamol (plus placebo time-contingent paracetamol) or a double placebo study arm. The primary outcome will be time (days) to recovery from pain recorded in a daily pain diary. Other outcomes will be pain intensity, disability, function, global perceived effect and sleep quality, captured at baseline and at weeks 1, 2, 4 and 12 by an assessor blind to treatment allocation. An economic analysis will be conducted to determine the cost-effectiveness of treatment from the health sector and societal perspectives. Discussion The successful completion of the trial will provide the first high quality evidence on the effectiveness of the use of paracetamol, a guideline endorsed treatment for acute LBP. Trail registration ACTRN12609000966291. PMID:20650012

  7. Nonlinear robust control of hypersonic aircrafts with interactions between flight dynamics and propulsion systems.

    PubMed

    Li, Zhaoying; Zhou, Wenjie; Liu, Hao

    2016-09-01

    This paper addresses the nonlinear robust tracking controller design problem for hypersonic vehicles. This problem is challenging due to strong coupling between the aerodynamics and the propulsion system, and the uncertainties involved in the vehicle dynamics including parametric uncertainties, unmodeled model uncertainties, and external disturbances. By utilizing the feedback linearization technique, a linear tracking error system is established with prescribed references. For the linear model, a robust controller is proposed based on the signal compensation theory to guarantee that the tracking error dynamics is robustly stable. Numerical simulation results are given to show the advantages of the proposed nonlinear robust control method, compared to the robust loop-shaping control approach.

  8. Nonlinear robust control of hypersonic aircrafts with interactions between flight dynamics and propulsion systems.

    PubMed

    Li, Zhaoying; Zhou, Wenjie; Liu, Hao

    2016-09-01

    This paper addresses the nonlinear robust tracking controller design problem for hypersonic vehicles. This problem is challenging due to strong coupling between the aerodynamics and the propulsion system, and the uncertainties involved in the vehicle dynamics including parametric uncertainties, unmodeled model uncertainties, and external disturbances. By utilizing the feedback linearization technique, a linear tracking error system is established with prescribed references. For the linear model, a robust controller is proposed based on the signal compensation theory to guarantee that the tracking error dynamics is robustly stable. Numerical simulation results are given to show the advantages of the proposed nonlinear robust control method, compared to the robust loop-shaping control approach. PMID:27132149

  9. β-Blockers in sepsis: protocol for a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised control trials

    PubMed Central

    Duan, Erick H; Oczkowski, Simon J W; Belley-Cote, Emilie; Whitlock, Richard; Lamontagne, Francois; Devereaux, Phillip J; Cook, Deborah J

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Sepsis is a common and deadly complication of infection. As part of the host response, sympathetic stimulation can result in septic myocardial depression, and metabolic, haematological and immunological dysfunction. Administration of β-blockers may attenuate this pathophysiological response to infection, but the effects on clinical outcomes are unknown. The objective of this systematic review is to determine the efficacy and safety of β-blockers in adults with sepsis using data from randomised control trials. Methods and analysis We will identify randomised control trials comparing treatment with β-blockers, versus placebo or standard care in adults with sepsis. Data sources will include MEDLINE, EMBASE, CENTRAL, clinical trial registries and conference proceedings. Two reviewers will independently determine trial eligibility. For each included trial, we will conduct duplicate independent data extraction, risk of bias assessment and evaluation of the quality of the evidence using the GRADE approach. Ethics and dissemination Our systematic review will evaluate the effects of β-blockers in adults with sepsis, comprehensively summarising and appraising the available evidence from randomised control trials. The results of this systematic review will help clinicians treating patients with sepsis to understand the potential role of β-blockade, and inform future research on this topic. Our findings will be disseminated through conference presentation and publication in a peer-reviewed journal. Trial registration number CRD42016036933. PMID:27338886

  10. Robustness of DNA repair through collective rate control.

    PubMed

    Verbruggen, Paul; Heinemann, Tim; Manders, Erik; von Bornstaedt, Gesa; van Driel, Roel; Höfer, Thomas

    2014-01-01

    DNA repair and other chromatin-associated processes are carried out by enzymatic macromolecular complexes that assemble at specific sites on the chromatin fiber. How the rate of these molecular machineries is regulated by their constituent parts is poorly understood. Here we quantify nucleotide-excision DNA repair in mammalian cells and find that, despite the pathways' molecular complexity, repair effectively obeys slow first-order kinetics. Theoretical analysis and data-based modeling indicate that these kinetics are not due to a singular rate-limiting step. Rather, first-order kinetics emerge from the interplay of rapidly and reversibly assembling repair proteins, stochastically distributing DNA lesion repair over a broad time period. Based on this mechanism, the model predicts that the repair proteins collectively control the repair rate. Exploiting natural cell-to-cell variability, we corroborate this prediction for the lesion-recognition factor XPC and the downstream factor XPA. Our findings provide a rationale for the emergence of slow time scales in chromatin-associated processes from fast molecular steps and suggest that collective rate control might be a widespread mode of robust regulation in DNA repair and transcription.

  11. A novel school-based intervention to improve nutrition knowledge in children: cluster randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Improving nutrition knowledge among children may help them to make healthier food choices. The aim of this study was to assess the effectiveness and acceptability of a novel educational intervention to increase nutrition knowledge among primary school children. Methods We developed a card game 'Top Grub' and a 'healthy eating' curriculum for use in primary schools. Thirty-eight state primary schools comprising 2519 children in years 5 and 6 (aged 9-11 years) were recruited in a pragmatic cluster randomised controlled trial. The main outcome measures were change in nutrition knowledge scores, attitudes to healthy eating and acceptability of the intervention by children and teachers. Results Twelve intervention and 13 control schools (comprising 1133 children) completed the trial. The main reason for non-completion was time pressure of the school curriculum. Mean total nutrition knowledge score increased by 1.1 in intervention (baseline to follow-up: 28.3 to 29.2) and 0.3 in control schools (27.3 to 27.6). Total nutrition knowledge score at follow-up, adjusted for baseline score, deprivation, and school size, was higher in intervention than in control schools (mean difference = 1.1; 95% CI: 0.05 to 2.16; p = 0.042). At follow-up, more children in the intervention schools said they 'are currently eating a healthy diet' (39.6%) or 'would try to eat a healthy diet' (35.7%) than in control schools (34.4% and 31.7% respectively; chi-square test p < 0.001). Most children (75.5%) enjoyed playing the game and teachers considered it a useful resource. Conclusions The 'Top Grub' card game facilitated the enjoyable delivery of nutrition education in a sample of UK primary school age children. Further studies should determine whether improvements in nutrition knowledge are sustained and lead to changes in dietary behaviour. PMID:20219104

  12. Cognitive behavioural therapy for medically unexplained physical symptoms: a randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed Central

    Speckens, A. E.; van Hemert, A. M.; Spinhoven, P.; Hawton, K. E.; Bolk, J. H.; Rooijmans, H. G.

    1995-01-01

    OBJECTIVE--To examine the additional effect of cognitive behavioural therapy for patients with medically unexplained physical symptoms in comparison with optimised medical care. DESIGN--Randomised controlled trial with follow up assessments six and 12 months after the baseline evaluation. SETTING--General medical outpatient clinic in a university hospital. SUBJECTS--An intervention group of 39 patients and a control group of 40 patients. INTERVENTIONS--The intervention group received between six and 16 sessions of cognitive behavioural therapy. Therapeutic techniques used included identification and modification of dysfunctional automatic thoughts and behavioural experiments aimed at breaking the vicious cycles of the symptoms and their consequences. The control group received optimised medical care. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES--The degree of change, frequency and intensity of the presenting symptoms, psychological distress, functional impairment, hypochondriacal beliefs and attitudes, and (at 12 months of follow up) number of visits to the general practitioner. RESULTS--At six months of follow up the intervention group reported a higher recovery rate (odds ratio 0.40; 95% confidence interval 0.16 to 1.00), a lower mean intensity of the physical symptoms (difference -1.2; -2.0 to -0.3), and less impairment of sleep (odds ratio 0.38; 0.15 to 0.94) than the controls. After adjustment for coincidental baseline differences the intervention and control groups also differed with regard to frequency of the symptoms (0.32; 0.13 to 0.77), limitations in social (0.35; 0.14 to 0.85) and leisure (0.36; 0.14 to 0.93) activities, and illness behaviour (difference -2.5; -4.6 to -0.5). At 12 months of follow up the differences between the groups were largely maintained. CONCLUSION--Cognitive behavioural therapy seems to be a feasible and effective treatment in general medical patients with unexplained physical symptoms. PMID:7496281

  13. Effects of lifestyle exercise on premenopausal bone health: a randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Babatunde, Opeyemi; Forsyth, Jacky

    2014-09-01

    Osteoporosis, a slowly evolving public health epidemic, often with an insidious presentation is largely preventable but the optimal dimensions of exercise that may be prescribed for enhancing bone-health among premenopausal adults are yet to be elucidated. Hence, the escalating incidence and burden of prevalence of osteoporosis is yet unabated. Considering that exogenous hormones in the form of hormonal contraception are known to modulate bone mass, investigations of their possible influence on the translation of exercise-induced osteogenic stimuli on the mature bone is pertinent. The aim of this study was to examine the effect of specified lifestyle exercise on bone-health of premenopausal women. Premenopausal women (n = 96, mean age: 22.25 ± 3.5 years; mean BMI: 23.43 ± 3.5 kg/m(2)) participated in a 6-month randomised controlled trial involving home-based rest-interspersed bouts of high-impact exercise for the intervention group and sham exercise for the control group. Approximately half (47) of the participants (24-exercise, 23-control) were on hormonal-based contraception while the other half (49: 24-exercise, 25-control) were not on hormonal contraception. The regime led to a significant 3.7 % increase in broadband ultrasound attenuation of exercisers compared to controls; hormonal contraceptive use did not appear to potentiate the osteogenic effects of the lifestyle exercise regime. The research highlights that short, discrete bouts of high-impact exercise may be a potential public health prescription for enhancing premenopausal bone-health regardless of hormonal contraceptive use.

  14. Theory of planned behaviour variables and objective walking behaviour do not show seasonal variation in a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Longitudinal studies have shown that objectively measured walking behaviour is subject to seasonal variation, with people walking more in summer compared to winter. Seasonality therefore may have the potential to bias the results of randomised controlled trials if there are not adequate statistical or design controls. Despite this there are no studies that assess the impact of seasonality on walking behaviour in a randomised controlled trial, to quantify the extent of such bias. Further there have been no studies assessing how season impacts on the psychological predictors of walking behaviour to date. The aim of the present study was to assess seasonal differences in a) objective walking behaviour and b) Theory of Planned Behaviour (TPB) variables during a randomised controlled trial of an intervention to promote walking. Methods 315 patients were recruited to a two-arm cluster randomised controlled trial of an intervention to promote walking in primary care. A series of repeated measures ANCOVAs were conducted to examine the effect of season on pedometer measures of walking behaviour and TPB measures, assessed immediately post-intervention and six months later. Hierarchical regression analyses were conducted to assess whether season moderated the prediction of intention and behaviour by TPB measures. Results There were no significant differences in time spent walking in spring/summer compared to autumn/winter. There was no significant seasonal variation in most TPB variables, although the belief that there will be good weather was significantly higher in spring/summer (F = 19.46, p < .001). Season did not significantly predict intention or objective walking behaviour, or moderate the effects of TPB variables on intention or behaviour. Conclusion Seasonality does not influence objectively measured walking behaviour or psychological variables during a randomised controlled trial. Consequently physical activity behaviour outcomes in trials will

  15. Cost-effectiveness of telehealth for patients with depression: evidence from the Healthlines randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Hollinghurst, Sandra; Edwards, Louisa; Thomas, Clare; Foster, Alexis; Davies, Ben; Gaunt, Daisy; Montgomery, Alan A.; Salisbury, Chris

    2016-01-01

    Background Depression is a prevalent long-term condition that is associated with substantial resource use. Telehealth may offer a cost-effective means of supporting the management of people with depression. Aims To investigate the cost-effectiveness of a telehealth intervention (‘Healthlines') for patients with depression. Method A prospective patient-level economic evaluation conducted alongside a randomised controlled trial. Patients were recruited through primary care, and the intervention was delivered via a telehealth service. Participants with a confirmed diagnosis of depression and PHQ-9 score ≥10 were recruited from 43 English general practices. A series of up to 10 scripted, theory-led, telephone encounters with health information advisers supported participants to effect a behaviour change, use online resources, optimise medication and improve adherence. The intervention was delivered alongside usual care and was designed to support rather than duplicate primary care. Cost-effectiveness from a combined health and social care perspective was measured by net monetary benefit at the end of 12 months of follow-up, calculated from incremental cost and incremental quality-adjusted life years (QALYs). Cost–consequence analysis included cost of lost productivity, participant out-of-pocket expenditure and the clinical outcome. Results A total of 609 participants were randomised – 307 to receive the Healthlines intervention plus usual care and 302 to receive usual care alone. Forty-five per cent of participants had missing quality of life data, 41% had missing cost data and 51% of participants had missing data on either cost or utility, or both. Multiple imputation was used for the base-case analysis. The intervention was associated with incremental mean per-patient National Health Service/personal social services cost of £168 (95% CI £43 to £294) and an incremental QALY gain of 0.001 (95% CI −0.023 to 0.026). The incremental cost-effectiveness ratio

  16. A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials of treatments for clozapine-induced obesity and metabolic syndrome.

    PubMed

    Zimbron, Jorge; Khandaker, Golam M; Toschi, Chiara; Jones, Peter B; Fernandez-Egea, Emilio

    2016-09-01

    Metabolic complications are commonly found in people treated with clozapine. Reviews on the management of this problem have generally drawn conclusions by grouping different types of studies involving patients treated with various different antipsychotics. We carried out a systematic review and meta-analysis of pharmacological and non-pharmacological treatments for clozapine-induced obesity or metabolic syndrome. Two researchers independently searched PubMed and Embase for randomised controlled trials (RCTs) of treatments for clozapine-induced obesity or metabolic syndrome. All other types of studies were excluded. We only included RCTs where more than 50% of participants were taking clozapine. We identified 15 RCTs. Effective pharmacological treatments for clozapine-induced obesity and metabolic syndrome include metformin, aripiprazole, and Orlistat (in men only). Meta-analysis of three studies showed a robust effect of metformin in reducing body mass index and waist circumference but no effects on blood glucose, triglyceride levels, or HDL levels. In addition, there is limited evidence for combined calorie restriction and exercise as a non-pharmacological alternative for the treatment of clozapine-induced obesity, but only in an in-patient setting. Rosiglitazone, topiramate, sibutramine, phenylpropanolamine, modafinil, and atomoxetine have not shown to be beneficial, despite reports of efficacy in other populations treated with different antipsychotics. We conclude that randomised-controlled trial data support the use of metformin, aripiprazole, and Orlistat (in men only) for treating clozapine-induced obesity. Calorie restriction in combination with an exercise programme may be effective as a non-pharmacological alternative. Findings from trials in different populations should not be extrapolated to people being treated with clozapine. PMID:27496573

  17. Comparative efficacy of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI) in treating major depressive disorder: a protocol for network meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials

    PubMed Central

    Jia, Yongliang; Zhu, Hongmei; Leung, Siu-wai

    2016-01-01

    Introduction There have been inconsistent findings from randomised controlled trials (RCTs) and systematic reviews on the efficacies of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) as the first-line treatment of major depressive disorder (MDD). Besides inconsistencies among randomised controlled trials (RCTs), their risks of bias and evidence grading have seldom been evaluated in meta-analysis. This study aims to compare the efficacy of SSRIs by conducting a Bayesian network meta-analysis, which will be the most comprehensive evaluation of evidence to resolve the inconsistency among previous studies. Methods and analyses SSRIs including citalopram, escitalopram, fluoxetine, fluvoxamine, paroxetine, sertraline and vilazodone have been selected. Systematic database searching and screening will be conducted for the RCTs on drug treatment of patients with MDD according to pre-specified search strategies and selection criteria. PubMed, the Cochrane Library, EMBASE, ScienceDirect, the US Food and Drug Administration Website, ClinicalTrial.gov and WHO Clinical Trials will be searched. Outcome data including Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HDRS), Montgomery-Åsberg Depression Rating Scale (MADRS) and Clinical Global Impression (CGI) from eligible RCTs will be extracted. The outcomes will be analysed as ORs and mean differences under a random-effects model. A Bayesian network meta-analysis will be conducted with WinBUGS software, to compare the efficacies of SSRIs. Subgroup and sensitivity analysis will be performed to explain the study heterogeneity and evaluate the robustness of the results. Meta-regression analysis will be conducted to determine the possible factors affecting the efficacy outcomes. The Cochrane risk of bias assessment tool will be used to assess the RCT quality, and the Grading of Recommendation, Assessment, Development and Evaluation will be used to assess the strength of evidence from the meta-analysis. Ethics and dissemination No ethical approval

  18. Acupuncture with manual and electrical stimulation for labour pain: a longitudinal randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Acupuncture is commonly used to reduce pain during labour despite contradictory results. The aim of this study is to evaluate the effectiveness of acupuncture with manual stimulation and acupuncture with combined manual and electrical stimulation (electro-acupuncture) compared with standard care in reducing labour pain. Our hypothesis was that both acupuncture stimulation techniques were more effective than standard care, and that electro-acupuncture was most effective. Methods A longitudinal randomised controlled trial. The recruitment of participants took place at the admission to the labour ward between November 2008 and October 2011 at two Swedish hospitals . 303 nulliparous women with normal pregnancies were randomised to: 40 minutes of manual acupuncture (MA), electro-acupuncture (EA), or standard care without acupuncture (SC). Primary outcome: labour pain, assessed by Visual Analogue Scale (VAS). Secondary outcomes: relaxation, use of obstetric pain relief during labour and post-partum assessments of labour pain. The sample size calculation was based on the primary outcome and a difference of 15 mm on VAS was regarded as clinically relevant, this gave 101 in each group, including a total of 303 women. Results Mean estimated pain scores on VAS (SC: 69.0, MA: 66.4 and EA: 68.5), adjusted for: treatment, age, education, and time from baseline, with no interactions did not differ between the groups (SC vs MA: mean difference 2.6, 95% confidence interval [CI] -1.7-6.9 and SC vs EA: mean difference 0.6 [95% CI] -3.6-4.8). Fewer number of women in the EA group used epidural analgesia (46%) than women in the MA group (61%) and SC group (70%) (EA vs SC: odds ratio [OR] 0.35; [95% CI] 0.19-0.67). Conclusions Acupuncture does not reduce women’s experience of labour pain, neither with manual stimulation nor with combined manual and electrical stimulation. However, fewer women in the EA group used epidural analgesia thus indicating that the effect of

  19. The impact of behavioural screening on intervention outcomes in a randomised, controlled multiple behaviour intervention trial

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background With an increasing research focus on multiple health behaviour change interventions, a methodological issue requiring further investigation is whether or not to employ pre-trial behavioural screening to exclude participants who are achieving a pre-specified level of one or more behaviours. Behavioural screening can be used to direct limited resources to participants most in need of a behaviour change intervention; but may reduce the representativeness of the sample and limit comparability with trials that do not employ pre-trial behavioural screening. Furthermore, the impact of this type of screening on intervention participation and intervention effects is unknown. Methods Data for this study come from the Logan Healthy Living Program, a randomised, controlled telephone counselling lifestyle intervention trial which did not employ behavioural screening prior to randomisation. Screening for physical activity, diet or the combination was simulated using baseline trial data. To examine the impact of behavioural screening on intervention participation (in terms of participant characteristics, intervention dose received and retention), characteristics of participants included an excluded under the various screening scenarios were compared. To examine the impact of behavioural screening on intervention effects, results from the main trial analysis were compared with results obtained from the same analyses performed separately for each of the screened groups. Results Simulated pre-trial behavioural screening impacted minimally on intervention dose received and trial retention rate. Beyond the anticipated effect of reducing baseline levels of the behaviours being screened for, behavioural screening affected baseline levels of behaviours not targeted by screening, and participants' demographic and health-related characteristics. Behavioural screening impacted on intervention effects in ways that were anticipated and positive, but also unexpected and detrimental

  20. Early intervention for adolescents with Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome - a pragmatic cluster randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Self-reported knee pain is highly prevalent among adolescents. As much as 50% of the non-specific knee pain may be attributed to Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome (PFPS). In the short term, exercise therapy appears to have a better effect than patient education consisting of written information and general advice on exercise or compared with placebo treatment. But the long-term effect of exercise therapy compared with patient education is conflicting. The purpose of this study is to examine the short- and long-term effectiveness of patient education compared with patient education and multimodal physiotherapy applied at a very early stage of the condition among adolescents. Methods/Design This study is a single blind pragmatic cluster randomised controlled trial. Four upper secondary schools have been invited to participate in the study (approximately 2500 students, aged 15-19 years). Students are asked to answer an online questionnaire regarding musculoskeletal pain. The students who report knee pain are contacted by telephone and offered a clinical examination by a rheumatologist. Subjects who fit the inclusion criteria and are diagnosed with PFPS are invited to participate in the study. A minimum of 102 students with PFPS are then cluster-randomised into two intervention groups based on which school they attend. Both intervention groups receive written information and education. In addition to patient education, one group receives multimodal physiotherapy consisting primarily of neuromuscular training of the muscles around the foot, knee and hip and home exercises. The students with PFPS fill out self-reported questionnaires at baseline, 3, 6, 12 and 24 months after inclusion in the study. The primary outcome measure is perception of recovery measured on a 7-point Likert scale ranging from "completely recovered" to "worse than ever" at 12 months. Discussion This study is designed to investigate the effectiveness of patient education compared with patient

  1. Randomised, controlled study of intratumoral recombinant gamma-interferon treatment in newly diagnosed glioblastoma.

    PubMed Central

    Färkkilä, M.; Jääskeläinen, J.; Kallio, M.; Blomstedt, G.; Raininko, R.; Virkkunen, P.; Paetau, A.; Sarelin, H.; Mäntylä, M.

    1994-01-01

    The effect of intratumoral recombinant interferon gamma (rIFN-gamma) as adjuvant to open cytoreduction and external irradiation of 60 Gy on survival in adults with a newly diagnosed high-grade cerebral glioma was studied. The patients were randomised during surgery into the rIFN-gamma group (n = 14) or the control group (n = 17), and the latter received a subcutaneous reservoir of rIFN-gamma injections. Intratumoral rIFN-gamma was given three times a week for 4 weeks until radiotherapy, escalating the dose from 5 micrograms to 50 micrograms. Both groups received external whole-brain irradiation of 40 Gy and a local boost of 20 Gy. After radiotherapy, rIFN-gamma was continued with 50 micrograms twice a week up to 9 weeks. The patients received no chemotherapy. Intratumoral rIFN-gamma was tolerated well with transient fever only. There were 12 glioblastomas (GBs) in the control group and nine in the rIFN-gamma group with completed irradiation. The patients were followed clinically and by computerised tomography (CT) every third month until death. Tumour responses were seen in three interferon-treated (one still alive 45 months after operation) and in two conventionally treated patients. The progression of the tumour volumes on CT did not differ between the IFN-treated and control groups. There were no differences in the survival times. Median survival of the rIFN-gamma-treated patients was 54 weeks (95% CI 35-68) and of the control patients 55 weeks (95% CI 41-77). Intratumoral rIFN-gamma given in the study doses does not seem to inhibit tumour growth or improve the prognosis of patients with high-grade glioma. PMID:8018525

  2. Successful GP intervention with frequent attenders in primary care: randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Bellón, Juan Ángel; Rodríguez-Bayón, Antonina; de Dios Luna, Juan; Torres-González, Francisco

    2008-01-01

    Background Frequent attenders to GP clinics can place an unnecessary burden on primary care. Interventions to reduce frequent attendance have had mixed results. Aim To assess the effectiveness of a GP intervention to reduce frequent-attender consultations. Design of study Randomised controlled trial with frequent attenders divided into an intervention group and two control groups (one control group was seen by GPs also providing care to patients undergoing the intervention). Setting A health centre in southern Spain. Method Six GPs and 209 randomly-selected frequent attenders participated. Three GPs were randomly allocated to perform the new intervention: of the 137 frequent attenders registered with these three GPs, 66 were randomly allocated to receive the intervention (IG) and 71 to a usual care control group (CG2). The other three GPs offered usual care to the other 72 frequent attenders (CG1). The main outcome measure was the total number of consultations 1 year post-intervention. Baseline measurements were recorded of sociodemographic characteristics, provider–user interface, chronic illnesses, and psychosocial variables. GPs allocated to the new intervention received 15 hours' training which incorporated biopsychosocial, organisational, and relational approaches. After 1 year of follow-up frequent attenders were contacted. An intention-to-treat analysis was used. Results A multilevel model was built with three factors: time, patient, and doctor. After adjusting for covariates, the mean number of visits at 1 year in IG was 13.10 (95% confidence interval [CI] = 11.39 to 14.94); in the CG1 group was 19.37 (95% CI = 17.31 to 21.55); and in the CG2 group this was 16.72 (95% CI =14.84 to 18.72). Conclusion The new intervention with GPs resulted in a significant and relevant reduction in frequent-attender consultations. Although further trials are needed, this intervention is recommended to GPs interested in reducing consultations by their frequent attenders

  3. Randomised, blinded, placebo controlled trial of doxycycline for chronic seronegative arthritis

    PubMed Central

    Smieja, M; MacPherson, D; Kean, W; Schmuck, M; Goldsmith, C; Buchanan, W; Hart, L; Mahony, J

    2001-01-01

    OBJECTIVE—To determine whether long term doxycycline improves symptoms in patients with chronic seronegative or reactive arthritis.
METHODS—A randomised, triple blind, controlled clinical trial of three months' treatment with doxycycline or placebo of patients with chronic reactive or seronegative arthritis was conducted. The primary study end points were three month pain and functional status measured by a self administered Arthritis Impact Measurement Scales version 2 (AIMS2) quality of life questionnaire. Secondary end points were pain and functional status at 6-12 months, three month rheumatologist assessed joint count, pain, and arthritis activity, and treatment efficacy in those with previous exposure to chlamydia.
RESULTS—Of 60 patients randomly allocated to receive doxycycline or placebo, results from 37 were evaluable at three months. Groups were well balanced for major prognostic variables. Doxycycline had no detectable effect at three months on pain change scores (mean difference 1.5, 95% CI −1.2 to 4.2, p=0.25) or composite functional change scores (mean difference 0.8, 95% CI −5.6 to 7.1, p=0.81). Furthermore, there were no differences in secondary study end points, and no apparent treatment effect in patients with previous chlamydia infection.
CONCLUSION—Three months' treatment with doxycycline did not improve pain or functional status in patients with chronic reactive or seronegative arthritis.

 PMID:11709448

  4. Acupuncture for vascular mild cognitive impairment: a systematic review of randomised controlled trials

    PubMed Central

    Cao, Huijuan; Wang, Yuyi; Chang, Dennis; Zhou, Li; Liu, Jianping

    2013-01-01

    Background Vascular mild cognitive impairment (VMCI) is the most common type of vascular cognitive impairment induced by cerebrovascular disease. No effective medicines are currently available for VMCI. Objective To assess the effectiveness and safety of acupuncture for VMCI. Methods Seven electronic databases were searched for randomised controlled trials which investigated the effects of acupuncture compared with no treatment, placebo or conventional therapies on cognitive function or other clinical outcomes in patients with VMCI. The quality of the trials selected was evaluated according to the ‘risk of bias’ assessment provided by the Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Interventions. RevMan V.5.1 software was employed for data analysis. Results Twelve trials with 691 participants were included. The methodological quality of all included trials was unclear and/or they had a high risk of bias. Meta-analysis showed acupuncture in conjunction with other therapies could significantly improve Mini-Mental State Examination scores (mean difference 1.99, 95% CI 1.09 to 2.88, random model, p<0.0001, 6 trials). No included trials mentioned any adverse events of the treatment. Conclusions The current clinical evidence is not of sufficient quality for wider application of acupuncture to be recommended for the treatment of VMCI, and further large, rigorously designed trials are warranted. PMID:24123487

  5. Randomised controlled trial of brief neonatal exposure to cows' milk on the development of atopy

    PubMed Central

    de Jong, M. H; Linden, V.; Aalberse, R.; Oosting, J.; Tijssen, J.; de Groot, C. J

    1998-01-01

    OBJECTIVE—To determine the effect of brief early exposure to cows' milk on atopy in the first 2 years of life.
DESIGN—Double blind, placebo controlled, randomised feeding intervention trial (Bokaal study).
SETTING—Dutch midwifery practices.
PARTICIPANTS—1533 breast fed neonates.
INTERVENTION—Exposure to cows' milk protein (n = 758) or a protein free placebo (n = 775) during the first 3 days of life.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES—Clinical atopic disease and any positive radioallergosorbent (RAST) tests at 1 year of age.
RESULTS—Atopic disease in the first year was found in 10.0% (cows' milk) v 9.3% (placebo) of the children, with a relative risk of 1.07; in the second year, atopic disease was found in 9.6% v 10.2%, respectively, with a relative risk of 0.94. Per protocol analysis showed similar results. Any RAST positive test was found in 9.4% (cows' milk) v 7.9% (placebo) of children, with a relative risk of 1.19. Stratified analysis for high family risk of allergy showed a doubled incidence of atopic disease but no effect from the intervention.
CONCLUSION—Early and brief exposure to cows' milk in breast fed children does not increase the risk of atopic disease in the first 2years.

 PMID:9797592

  6. Effects of group prenatal care on psychosocial risk in pregnancy: Results from a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Ickovics, Jeannette R.; Reed, Elizabeth; Magriples, Urania; Westdahl, Claire; Rising, Sharon Schindler; Kershaw, Trace S.

    2012-01-01

    Few interventions have succeeded in reducing psychosocial risk among pregnant women. The objective of this study was to determine whether an integrated group prenatal care intervention already shown to improve perinatal and sexual risk outcomes can also improve psychosocial outcomes compared to standard individual care. This randomised controlled trial included pregnant women ages 14–25 from two public hospitals (N = 1047) who were randomly assigned to standard individual care, group prenatal care or integrated group prenatal care intervention (CenteringPregnancy Plus, CP+). Timing and content of visits followed obstetrical guidelines, from 18-week gestation through birth. Each 2-h group prenatal care session included physical assessment, education/skills building and support via facilitated discussion. Using intention-to-treat models, there were no significant differences in psychosocial function; yet, women in the top tertile of psychosocial stress at study entry did benefit from integrated group care. High-stress women randomly assigned to CP+ reported significantly increased self-esteem, decreased stress and social conflict in the third trimester of pregnancy; social conflict and depression were significantly lower 1-year postpartum (all p-values <0.02). CP+ improved psychosocial outcomes for high-stress women. This ‘bundled’ intervention has promise for improving psychosocial outcomes, especially for young pregnant women who are traditionally more vulnerable and underserved. PMID:21318932

  7. Haemodynamic effects of parenteral vs. enteral paracetamol in critically ill patients: a randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Kelly, S J; Moran, J L; Williams, P J; Burns, K; Rowland, A; Miners, J O; Peake, S L

    2016-10-01

    Paracetamol is a commonly used drug in the intensive care unit. There have been reports in the literature of an association with significant hypotension, a potentially important interaction for labile critically ill patients. Route of administration may influence the incidence of hypotension. This single-centre, prospective, open-label, randomised, parallel-arm, active-control trial was designed to determine the incidence of hypotension following the administration of paracetamol to critically ill patients. Fifty adult patients receiving paracetamol for analgesia or pyrexia were randomly assigned to receive either the parenteral or enteral formulation of the drug. Paracetamol concentrations were measured at baseline and at multiple time points over 24 h. The maximal plasma paracetamol concentration was significantly different between routes; 156 vs. 73 micromol.l(-1) [p = 0.0005] following the first dose of parenteral or enteral paracetamol, respectively. Sixteen hypotensive events occurred in 12 patients: parenteral n = 12; enteral n = 4. The incident rate ratio for parenteral vs. enteral paracetamol was 2.94 (95% CI 0.97-8.92; p = 0.06). The incidence of hypotension associated with paracetamol administration is higher than previously reported and tends to be more frequent with parenteral paracetamol. PMID:27611038

  8. Injury prevention in male veteran football players - a randomised controlled trial using "FIFA 11+".

    PubMed

    Hammes, Daniel; Aus der Fünten, Karen; Kaiser, Stephanie; Frisen, Eugen; Bizzini, Mario; Meyer, Tim

    2015-01-01

    The warm-up programme "FIFA 11+" has been shown to reduce football injuries in different populations, but so far veteran players have not been investigated. Due to differences in age, skill level and gender, a simple transfer of these results to veteran football is not recommended. The purpose of this study was to investigate the preventive effects of the "FIFA 11+" in veteran football players. Twenty veteran football teams were recruited for a prospective 9-month (1 season) cluster-randomised trial. The intervention group (INT, n = 146; 45 ± 8 years) performed the "FIFA 11+" at the beginning of each training session, while the control group (CON, n = 119; 43 ± 6 years) followed its regular training routine. Player exposure hours and injuries were recorded according to an international consensus statement. No significant difference was found between INT and CON in overall injury incidence (incidence rate ratio [IRR]: 0.91 [0.64-1.48]; P = 0.89). Only severe injuries reached statistical significance with higher incidence in CON (IRR: 0.46 [0.21-0.97], P = 0.04). Regular conduction (i.e. once a week) of the "FIFA 11+" did not prevent injuries in veteran footballers under real training and competition circumstances. The lack of preventive effects is likely due to the too low overall frequency of training sessions.

  9. A guide to performing a peer review of randomised controlled trials.

    PubMed

    Del Mar, Chris; Hoffmann, Tammy C

    2015-11-02

    Peer review of journal articles is an important step in the research process. Editors rely on the expertise of peer reviewers to properly assess submissions. Yet, peer review quality varies widely and few receive training or guidance in how to approach the task. This paper describes some of the main steps that peer reviewers in general and, in particular, those performing reviewes of randomised controlled trials (RCT), can use when carrying out a review. It can be helpful to begin with a brief read to acquaint yourself with the study, followed by a detailed read and a careful check for flaws. These can be divided into 'major' (problems that must be resolved before publication can be considered) and 'minor' (suggested improvements that are discretionary) flaws. Being aware of the appropriate reporting checklist for the study being reviewed (such as CONSORT and its extensions for RCTs) can also be valuable. Competing interests or prejudices might corrode the review, so ensuring transparency about them is important. Finally, ensuring that the paper's strengths are acknowledged along with a dissection of the weaknesses provides balance and perspective to both authors and editors. Helpful reviews are constructive and improve the quality of the paper. The proper conduct of a peer review is the responsibility of all who accept the role.

  10. Feasibility of conducting a randomised controlled trial of a cookstove intervention in rural Malawi

    PubMed Central

    Kachidiku, J.; Banda, H.; Kapanga, M.; Doyle, J. V.; Banda, E.; Fox, C.; Gordon, S. B.; Mortimer, K.

    2014-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Exposure to household air pollution (HAP) causes 4 million deaths annually, and strategies to reduce HAP exposure are urgently required. OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the acceptability and feasibility of conducting a trial of a cookstove intervention in rural Malawi. DESIGN: Non-smoking women were randomised to continuing to use an open fire (control) or to using a wood-burning clay cookstove (intervention). Symptom burden, oxygen saturation and exhaled carbon monoxide (eCO) were assessed at baseline and 7-day follow-up. A subset of women underwent HAP exposure monitoring. RESULTS: Of 51 women recruited, 50 (98%) completed the main study. The methodology was acceptable to participants. Headache, back pain and cough were the most commonly reported symptoms at baseline and follow-up. Median eCO was within normal limits, but with a difference of 0.5 parts per million (ppm) in median change of eCO from baseline to follow-up seen between the two groups (P ∙ 0.035). The peak ambient CO concentration detected was 150 ppm. CONCLUSION: This study suggests that a large cookstove intervention trial in Malawi would be feasible with careful community sensitisation. Monitoring exposure to HAP is challenging, and further studies evaluating potential biomarkers of exposure, including eCO, should be undertaken. PMID:24429320

  11. Effects of Green Tea on Streptococcus mutans Counts- A Randomised Control Trail

    PubMed Central

    R, Srinivas; B, Vikram Simha; Y, Sandhya Sree; T, Chandra Shekar; P, Siva Kumar

    2014-01-01

    Context: Mouth rinses have been in use from time immemorial as a supplement for routine oral hygiene. There are many number of mouth rinses currently available in the market in which many of them possess certain drawback, which has necessitated the search for alternate mouth rinses. Aim: The aim of the present study was to assess the effect of rinsing with green tea in comparison with chlorhexidine and plain water on Streptococcus mutans count. Setting and Design: A short term, single blinded, cross over randomised control clinical trial. Materials and Methods: Study includes a total of 30 subjects aged 20 to 25 years divided into three groups that is green tea group, chlorhexidine group, and plain water group. A baseline plaque samples were collected and under supervision of examiner all the subjects rinsed with 10 ml of respective solutions for one minute. Plaque samples were collected at five minutes after rinsing. All the 30 subjects were exposed to all the three rinses with a wash out period of seven days between the interventions. All the samples were sent to microbial analysis. Results: Wilcoxon matched pair test and Mann-Whitney U test showed that both chlorhexidine and green tea significantly reduced Streptococcus mutans colony counts compared to plain water. Conclusion: The results of present study indicate that green tea mouth rinse proved to be equally effective compared to chlorhexidine which is considered as gold standard. This may also be a valuable public health intervention as it is economical and has multiple health benefits. PMID:25584303

  12. Antioxidant supplementation for the prevention of kwashiorkor in Malawian children: randomised, double blind, placebo controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Ciliberto, Heather; Ciliberto, Michael; Briend, Andreé; Ashorn, Per; Bier, Dennis; Manary, Mark

    2005-01-01

    Objective To evaluate the efficacy of antioxidant supplementation in preventing kwashiorkor in a population of Malawian children at high risk of developing kwashiorkor. Design Prospective, double blind, placebo controlled trial randomised by household. Setting 8 villages in rural southern Malawi. Participants 2372 children in 2156 households aged 1-4 years were enrolled; 2332 completed the trial. Intervention Daily supplementation with an antioxidant powder containing riboflavin, vitamin E, selenium, and N-acetylcysteine in a dose that provided about three times the recommended dietary allowance of each nutrient or placebo for 20 weeks. Main outcome measures The primary outcome was the incidence of oedema. Secondary outcomes were the rates of change for weight and length and the number of days of infectious symptoms. Results 62 children developed kwashiorkor (defined by the presence of oedema); 39/1184 (3.3%) were in the antioxidant group and 23/1188 (1.9%) were in the placebo group (relative risk 1.70, 95% confidence interval 0.98 to 2.42). The two groups did not differ in rates of weight or height gain. Children who received antioxidant supplementation did not experience less fever, cough, or diarrhoea. Conclusions Antioxidant supplementation at the dose provided did not prevent the onset of kwashiorkor. This finding does not support the hypothesis that depletion of vitamin E, selenium, cysteine, or riboflavin has a role in the development of kwashiorkor. PMID:15851401

  13. Oral magnesium for relief in pregnancy-induced leg cramps: a randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Supakatisant, Chayanis; Phupong, Vorapong

    2015-04-01

    Leg cramps are common in pregnant women. Currently, there is no standard treatment for pregnancy-induced leg cramps. The objective of this study was to evaluate the therapeutic efficacy of oral magnesium in pregnant women with leg cramps. This double-blinded, randomised, placebo-controlled trial included 86 healthy pregnant women, 14-34 weeks of gestation who had leg cramps at least twice per week. The study period was 4 weeks. Eighty women completed the study. Forty-one women were assigned to magnesium bisglycinate chelate (300 mg per day) and 39 women to placebo. Details of leg cramps were recorded before beginning the treatment and the fourth week of study. Outcome measure was the reduction of cramp frequency after treatment and cramp intensity measured by 100-mm visual analogue scale. Fifty per cent reduction of cramp frequency was significantly higher in the magnesium group than the placebo group (86.0% vs. 60.5%, P=0.007). The 50% reduction of cramp intensity was also significantly higher in the treatment group than in the placebo group (69.8% vs. 48.8%, P=0.048). There were no significant differences between the two groups in terms of side effects such as nausea and diarrhoea. These results demonstrated that oral magnesium supplement can improve the frequency and intensity of pregnancy-induced leg cramps. Therefore, oral magnesium may be a treatment option for women suffering from pregnancy-induced leg cramps.

  14. A guide to handling missing data in cost-effectiveness analysis conducted within randomised controlled trials.

    PubMed

    Faria, Rita; Gomes, Manuel; Epstein, David; White, Ian R

    2014-12-01

    Missing data are a frequent problem in cost-effectiveness analysis (CEA) within a randomised controlled trial. Inappropriate methods to handle missing data can lead to misleading results and ultimately can affect the decision of whether an intervention is good value for money. This article provides practical guidance on how to handle missing data in within-trial CEAs following a principled approach: (i) the analysis should be based on a plausible assumption for the missing data mechanism, i.e. whether the probability that data are missing is independent of or dependent on the observed and/or unobserved values; (ii) the method chosen for the base-case should fit with the assumed mechanism; and (iii) sensitivity analysis should be conducted to explore to what extent the results change with the assumption made. This approach is implemented in three stages, which are described in detail: (1) descriptive analysis to inform the assumption on the missing data mechanism; (2) how to choose between alternative methods given their underlying assumptions; and (3) methods for sensitivity analysis. The case study illustrates how to apply this approach in practice, including software code. The article concludes with recommendations for practice and suggestions for future research.

  15. Improving the Quality of Reports of Meta-Analyses of Randomised Controlled Trials: The QUOROM Statement.

    PubMed

    Moher, D.; Cook, D.J.; Eastwood, S.; Olkin, I.; Rennie, D.; Stroup, D.F.

    2000-12-01

    BACKGROUND: The Quality of Reporting of Meta-analyses (QUOROM) conference was convened to address standards for improving the quality of reporting of meta-analyses of clinical randomised controlled trials (RCTs). METHODS: The QUOROM group consisted of 30 clinical epidemiologists, clinicians, statisticians, editors, and researchers. In conference, the group was asked to identify items they thought should be included in a checklist of standards. Whenever possible, checklist items were guided by research evidence suggesting that failure to adhere to the item proposed could lead to biased results. A modified Delphi technique was used in assessing candidate items. FINDINGS: The conference resulted in the QUOROM statement, a checklist, and a flow diagram. The checklist describes our preferred way to present the abstract, introduction, methods, results, and discussion sections of a report of a meta-analysis. It is organised into 21 headings and subheadings regarding searches, selection, validity assessment, data abstraction, study characteristics, and quantitative data synthesis, and in the results with , study characteristics, and quantitative data synthesis; research documentation was identified for eight of the 18 items. The flow diagram provides information about both the numbers of RCTs identified, included, and excluded and the reasons for exclusion of trials. INTERPRETATION: We hope this report will generate further thought about ways to improve the quality of reports of meta-analyses of RCTs and that interested readers, reviewers, researchers, and editors will use the QUOROM statement and generate ideas for its improvement. Copyright 2000 S. Karger GmbH, Freiburg

  16. Typhoid fever vaccines: systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials.

    PubMed

    Fraser, Abigail; Paul, Mical; Goldberg, Elad; Acosta, Camilo J; Leibovici, Leonard

    2007-11-01

    We undertook a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials comparing a typhoid fever vaccine with any alternative typhoid fever vaccine or inactive agent. Trials evaluating killed whole-cell vaccines were excluded. The cumulative efficacy at 3 years for the Ty21a and the polysaccharide Vi vaccine were similar: 51% (95%CI 36%, 62%), and 55% (95%CI 30%, 70%), respectively. The cumulative efficacy of the Vi-rEPA vaccine at 3.8 years was higher, 89% (95%CI 76%, 97%), but this vaccine has not yet been licensed for use and was evaluated in only one trial. Adverse events were mild in nature and for most, not significantly more frequent in any of the vaccine groups when compared with placebo. Both the currently licensed Ty21a and Vi vaccine, are safe and efficacious for preventing typhoid fever. Neither vaccine is currently registered for administration to children below 2 years of age. Given the recent finding that typhoid fever also affects infants, development of a conjugate vaccine is warranted.

  17. Advance care planning: A systematic review of randomised controlled trials conducted with older adults.

    PubMed

    Weathers, Elizabeth; O'Caoimh, Rónán; Cornally, Nicola; Fitzgerald, Carol; Kearns, Tara; Coffey, Alice; Daly, Edel; O'Sullivan, Ronan; McGlade, Ciara; Molloy, D William

    2016-09-01

    Advance care planning (ACP), involving discussions between patients, families and healthcare professionals on future healthcare decisions, in advance of anticipated impairment in decision-making capacity, improves satisfaction and end-of-life care while respecting patient autonomy. It usually results in the creation of a written advanced care directive (ACD). This systematic review examines the impact of ACP on several outcomes (including symptom management, quality of care and healthcare utilisation) in older adults (>65years) across all healthcare settings. Nine randomised controlled trials (RCTs) were identified by searches of the CINAHL, PubMed and Cochrane databases. A total of 3646 older adults were included (range 72-88 years). Seven studies were conducted with community dwellers and the other two RCTs were conducted in nursing homes. Most studies did not implement a standardised ACD, or measure the impact on quality of end-of-life care or on the death and dying experience. All studies had some risk of bias, with most scoring poorly on the Oxford Quality Scale. While ACP interventions are well received by older adults and generally have positive effects on outcomes, this review highlights the need for well-designed RCTs that examine the economic impact of ACP and its effect on quality of care in nursing homes and other sectors. PMID:27451328

  18. Bisphosphonates in the management of thalassemia-associated osteoporosis: a systematic review of randomised controlled trials.

    PubMed

    Giusti, Andrea

    2014-11-01

    Bisphosphonates are potent inhibitors of bone resorption, widely used for the management of osteoporosis and fracture prevention. Recent evidence suggests that bisphosphonates may have beneficial effects in the treatment of thalassemia-associated osteoporosis, a complex and multifactorial condition. Here we summarise available data about the efficacy and tolerability of bisphosphonates in beta--thalassemic patients. Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) of bisphosphonates in beta-thalassemia were identified searching PubMed. Studies were reviewed to retrieve relevant clinical information. The following variables were considered to assess the safety and efficacy of bisphosphonates-bone mineral density (BMD), markers of bone turnover, incidence of fragility fracture, bone pain, back pain, and clinical adverse events. Five RCTs were identified, investigating alendronate, clodronate, zoledronic acid and neridronate. All bisphosphonates produced a significant decrease of the markers of bone turnover. Alendronate, neridronate, and zoledronic acid significantly improved BMD at the lumbar spine, femoral neck and total hip. Zoledronic acid and neridronate were also shown to reduce bone and back pain. Probably due to the small sample sizes and to the short duration of the trials, it was not possible to establish the anti-fracture efficacy of bisphosphonates; however, they were well tolerated and adverse events were rare but expected on the basis of previous studies. Sufficient evidence exists to support the use of bisphosphonates in the management of thalassemia-associated osteoporosis (to prevent bone loss and improve the BMD). Further research is warranted to establish their anti-fracture efficacy and long-term safety.

  19. Efficacy of metacognitive therapy for prolonged grief disorder: protocol for a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Wenn, Jenine; O'Connor, Moira; Breen, Lauren J; Kane, Robert T; Rees, Clare S

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Studies of effective psychotherapy for individuals suffering from the effects of prolonged grief disorder (PGD) are scarce. This paper describes the protocol for an evaluation of a metacognitive therapy programme designed specifically for PGD, to reduce the psychological distress and loss of functioning resulting from bereavement. Methods and analysis The proposed trial comprises three phases. Phase 1 consists of a review of the literature and semistructured interviews with key members of the target population to inform the development of a metacognitive therapy programme for Prolonged Grief. Phase 2 involves a randomised controlled trial to implement and evaluate the programme. Male and female adults (N=34) will be randomly assigned to either a wait list or an intervention group. Measures of PGD, anxiety, depression, rumination, metacognitions and quality of life will be taken pretreatment and posttreatment and at the 3-month and 6-month follow-up. The generalised linear mixed model will be used to assess treatment efficacy. Phase 3 will test the social validity of the programme. Discussion This study is the first empirical investigation of the efficacy of a targeted metacognitive treatment programme for PGD. A focus on identifying and changing the metacognitive mechanisms underpinning the development and maintenance of prolonged grief is likely to be beneficial to theory and practice. Ethics Ethics approval was obtained from Curtin University Human Research Ethics Committee (Approval number HR 41/2013.) Trial registration number ACTRN12613001270707. PMID:26646828

  20. Treatment of cannabis use among people with psychotic disorders: a critical review of randomised controlled trials.

    PubMed

    Baker, Amanda L; Thornton, Louise K; Hides, Leanne; Dunlop, Adrian

    2012-01-01

    There is growing and converging evidence that cannabis may be a major risk factor in people with psychotic disorders and prodromal psychotic symptoms. The lack of available pharmacological treatments for cannabis use indicates that psychological interventions should be a high priority, especially among people with psychotic disorders. However, there have been few randomised controlled trials (RCTs) of psychological interventions among this group. In the present study we critically overview RCTs of psychological and pharmacologic interventions among people with psychotic disorders, giving particular attention to those studies which report cannabis use outcomes. We then review data regarding treatment preferences among this group. RCTs of interventions within "real world" mental health systems among adults with severe mental disorders suggest that cannabis use is amenable to treatment in real world settings among people with psychotic disorders. RCTs of manual guided interventions among cannabis users indicate that while brief interventions are associated with reductions in cannabis use, longer interventions may be more effective. Additionally, RCTs reviewed suggest treatment with antipsychotic medication is not associated with a worsening of cannabis cravings or use and may be beneficial. The development of cannabinoid agonist medication may be an effective strategy for cannabis dependence and suitable for people with psychotic disorders. The development of cannabis use interventions for people with psychotic disorders should also consider patients' treatment preferences. Initial results indicate face-to-face interventions focussed on cannabis use may be preferred. Further research investigating the treatment preferences of people with psychotic disorders using cannabis is needed.

  1. Injury prevention in male veteran football players - a randomised controlled trial using "FIFA 11+".

    PubMed

    Hammes, Daniel; Aus der Fünten, Karen; Kaiser, Stephanie; Frisen, Eugen; Bizzini, Mario; Meyer, Tim

    2015-01-01

    The warm-up programme "FIFA 11+" has been shown to reduce football injuries in different populations, but so far veteran players have not been investigated. Due to differences in age, skill level and gender, a simple transfer of these results to veteran football is not recommended. The purpose of this study was to investigate the preventive effects of the "FIFA 11+" in veteran football players. Twenty veteran football teams were recruited for a prospective 9-month (1 season) cluster-randomised trial. The intervention group (INT, n = 146; 45 ± 8 years) performed the "FIFA 11+" at the beginning of each training session, while the control group (CON, n = 119; 43 ± 6 years) followed its regular training routine. Player exposure hours and injuries were recorded according to an international consensus statement. No significant difference was found between INT and CON in overall injury incidence (incidence rate ratio [IRR]: 0.91 [0.64-1.48]; P = 0.89). Only severe injuries reached statistical significance with higher incidence in CON (IRR: 0.46 [0.21-0.97], P = 0.04). Regular conduction (i.e. once a week) of the "FIFA 11+" did not prevent injuries in veteran footballers under real training and competition circumstances. The lack of preventive effects is likely due to the too low overall frequency of training sessions. PMID:25370591

  2. Reporting quality of randomised controlled trials published in prosthodontic and implantology journals.

    PubMed

    Kloukos, D; Papageorgiou, S N; Doulis, I; Petridis, H; Pandis, N

    2015-12-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine the reporting quality of randomised controlled trials (RCTs) published in prosthodontic and implantology journals. Thirty issues of nine journals in prosthodontics and implant dentistry were searched for RCTs, covering the years 2005-2012: The Journal of Prosthetic Dentistry, Journal of Oral Rehabilitation, The International Journal of Prosthodontics, The International Journal of Periodontics & Restorative Dentistry, Clinical Oral Implants Research, Clinical Implant Dentistry & Related Research, The International Journal of Oral & Maxillofacial Implants, Implant Dentistry and Journal of Dentistry. The reporting quality was assessed using a modified Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials (CONSORT) statement checklist. Data were analysed using descriptive statistics followed by univariable and multivariable examination of statistical associations (α = 0·05). A total of 147 RCTs were identified with a mean CONSORT score of 69·4 (s.d. = 9·7). Significant differences were found among journals with the Journal of Oral Rehabilitation achieving the highest score (80·6, s.d. = 5·5) followed by Clinical Oral Implants Research (73·7, s.d. = 8·3). Involvement of a statistician/methodologist was significantly associated with increased CONSORT scores. Overall, the reporting quality of RCTs in major prosthodontic and implantology journals requires improvement. This is of paramount importance considering that optimal reporting of RCTs is an important prerequisite for clinical decision-making.

  3. Efficacy and safety of the Chaihuguizhiganjiang-suanzaoren granule on primary insomnia: study protocol for a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Qing-Quan; Zhang, Jie; Guo, Rong-Juan; Xie, Ying-Zhen; Fu, Qing-Nan; He, Tian; Zhu, Xue-Qi; Du, Jie; Yang, Jing; Wang, Jia-Lin; Wei, Min-Min; Li, Qian-Qian; Shi, Guang-Xia; Liu, Cun-Zhi

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Insomnia is a highly prevalent, often debilitating and economically burdensome sleep disorder with limited effective therapies. Few data are available to understand which of the therapeutic alternatives is the most effective for patients with insomnia, especially for Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). Chinese herbal medicine, as a typical TCM, is one of the most popular complementary and alternative therapies for insomnia. We aim to evaluate the efficacy and safety of the Chaihuguizhiganjiang-suanzaoren granule (CSG), a Chinese herbal medicine treatment, in patients with primary insomnia. Methods and analysis This is a multicentre, placebo-controlled, double-blinded, randomised controlled clinical trial. A total of 258 participants are randomly allocated to two groups: the intervention group or the placebo group. The intervention group receives CSG and the placebo group receives a placebo granule. The patients receive either CSG or placebo two times daily for 8 weeks. The primary outcome is the Pittsburgh sleep quality index (PSQI). Secondary outcomes include the Insomnia Severity Index (ISI), Total Sleep Time (TST) and the Short-Form Health Survey (SF-36). The assessment is performed at baseline (before randomisation), 4, 8 and 12 weeks after randomisation. Ethics and dissemination The protocol has been approved by the Research Ethical Committee of Beijing Hospital of Traditional Chinese Medicine Affiliated to Capital Medical University (reference: 2014BL-003-01). The trial will be helpful in identifying the efficacy and safety of CSG in patients with primary insomnia. Trial registration number ISRCTN22001145; Pre-results. PMID:26839010

  4. A multifaceted workplace intervention for low back pain in nurses' aides: a pragmatic stepped wedge cluster randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Rasmussen, Charlotte Diana Nørregaard; Holtermann, Andreas; Bay, Hans; Søgaard, Karen; Birk Jørgensen, Marie

    2015-09-01

    This study established the effectiveness of a workplace multifaceted intervention consisting of participatory ergonomics, physical training, and cognitive-behavioural training (CBT) for low back pain (LBP). Between November 2012 and May 2014, we conducted a pragmatic stepped wedge cluster randomised controlled trial with 594 workers from eldercare workplaces (nursing homes and home care) randomised to 4 successive time periods, 3 months apart. The intervention lasted 12 weeks and consisted of 19 sessions in total (physical training [12 sessions], CBT [2 sessions], and participatory ergonomics [5 sessions]). Low back pain was the outcome and was measured as days, intensity (worst pain on a 0-10 numeric rank scale), and bothersomeness (days) by monthly text messages. Linear mixed models were used to estimate the intervention effect. Analyses were performed according to intention to treat, including all eligible randomised participants, and were adjusted for baseline values of the outcome. The linear mixed models yielded significant effects on LBP days of -0.8 (95% confidence interval [CI], -1.19 to -0.38), LBP intensity of -0.4 (95% CI, -0.60 to -0.26), and bothersomeness days of -0.5 (95% CI, -0.85 to -0.13) after the intervention compared with the control group. This study shows that a multifaceted intervention consisting of participatory ergonomics, physical training, and CBT can reduce LBP among workers in eldercare. Thus, multifaceted interventions may be relevant for improving LBP in a working population.

  5. Mu-Synthesis robust control of 3D bar structure vibration using piezo-stack actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mystkowski, Arkadiusz; Koszewnik, Andrzej Piotr

    2016-10-01

    This paper presents an idea for the Mu-Synthesis robust control of 3D bar structure vibration with using a piezo-stack actuators. A model of the 3D bar structure with uncertain parameters is presented as multi-input multi-output (MIMO) dynamics. Nominal stability and nominal performances of the open-loop 3D bar structure dynamic model is developed. The uncertain model-based robust controller is derived due to voltage control signal saturation and selected parameter perturbations. The robust control performances and robustness of the system due to uncertainties influence is evaluated by using singular values and a small gain theorem. Finally, simulation investigations and experimental results shown that system response of the 3D bar structure dynamic model with taken into account perturbed parameters met desired robust stability and system limits. The proposed robust controller ensures a good dynamics of the closed-loop system, robustness, and vibration attenuation.

  6. Nutritional route in oesophageal resection trial II (NUTRIENT II): study protocol for a multicentre open-label randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Berkelmans, Gijs H K; Wilts, Bas J W; Kouwenhoven, Ewout A; Kumagai, Koshi; Nilsson, Magnus; Weijs, Teus J; Nieuwenhuijzen, Grard A P; van Det, Marc J; Luyer, Misha D P

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Early start of an oral diet is safe and beneficial in most types of gastrointestinal surgery and is a crucial part of fast track or enhanced recovery protocols. However, the feasibility and safety of oral intake directly following oesophagectomy remain unclear. The aim of this study is to investigate the effects of early versus delayed start of oral intake on postoperative recovery following oesophagectomy. Methods and analysis This is an open-label multicentre randomised controlled trial. Patients undergoing elective minimally invasive or hybrid oesophagectomy for cancer are eligible. Further inclusion criteria are intrathoracic anastomosis, written informed consent and age 18 years or older. Inability for oral intake, inability to place a feeding jejunostomy, inability to provide written consent, swallowing disorder, achalasia, Karnofsky Performance Status <80 and malnutrition are exclusion criteria. Patients will be randomised using online randomisation software. The intervention group (direct oral feeding) will receive a liquid oral diet for 2 weeks with gradually expanding daily maximums. The control group (delayed oral feeding) will receive enteral feeding via a jejunostomy during 5 days and then start the same liquid oral diet. The primary outcome measure is functional recovery. Secondary outcome measures are 30-day surgical complications; nutritional status; need for artificial nutrition; need for additional interventions; health-related quality of life. We aim to recruit 148 patients. Statistical analysis will be performed according to an intention to treat principle. Results are presented as risk ratios with corresponding 95% CIs. A two-tailed p<0.05 is considered statistically significant. Ethics and dissemination Our study protocol has received ethical approval from the Medical research Ethics Committees United (MEC-U). This study is conducted according to the principles of Good Clinical Practice. Verbal and written informed consent is

  7. Gabapentin for the Management of Chronic Pelvic Pain in Women (GaPP1): A Pilot Randomised Controlled Trial.

    PubMed

    Lewis, Steff C; Bhattacharya, Siladitya; Wu, Olivia; Vincent, Katy; Jack, Stuart A; Critchley, Hilary O D; Porter, Maureen A; Cranley, Denise; Wilson, John A; Horne, Andrew W

    2016-01-01

    Chronic pelvic pain (CPP) affects 2.1-24% of women. Frequently, no underlying pathology is identified, and the pain is difficult to manage. Gabapentin is prescribed for CPP despite no robust evidence of efficacy. We performed a pilot trial in two UK centres to inform the planning of a future multicentre RCT to evaluate gabapentin in CPP management. Our primary objective was to determine levels of participant recruitment and retention. Secondary objectives included estimating potential effectiveness, acceptability to participants of trial methodology, and cost-effectiveness of gabapentin. Women with CPP and no obvious pelvic pathology were assigned to an increasing regimen of gabapentin (300-2700 mg daily) or placebo. We calculated the proportion of eligible women randomised, and of randomised participants who were followed up to six months. The analyses by treatment group were by intention-to-treat. Interviews were conducted to evaluate women's experiences of the trial. A probabilistic decision analytical model was used to estimate cost-effectiveness. Between September 2012-2013, 47 women (34% of those eligible) were randomised (22 to gabapentin, 25 to placebo), and 25 (53%) completed six-month follow-up. Participants on gabapentin had less pain (BPI difference 1.72 points, 95% CI:0.07-3.36), and an improvement in mood (HADS difference 4.35 points, 95% CI:1.97-6.73) at six months than those allocated placebo. The majority of participants described their trial experience favorably. At the UK threshold for willingness-to-pay, the probabilities of gabapentin or no treatment being cost-effective are similar. A pilot trial assessing gabapentin for CPP was feasible, but uncertainty remains, highlighting the need for a large definitive trial.

  8. Robust reliable sampled-data control for switched systems with application to flight control

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sakthivel, R.; Joby, Maya; Shi, P.; Mathiyalagan, K.

    2016-11-01

    This paper addresses the robust reliable stabilisation problem for a class of uncertain switched systems with random delays and norm bounded uncertainties. The main aim of this paper is to obtain the reliable robust sampled-data control design which involves random time delay with an appropriate gain control matrix for achieving the robust exponential stabilisation for uncertain switched system against actuator failures. In particular, the involved delays are assumed to be randomly time-varying which obeys certain mutually uncorrelated Bernoulli distributed white noise sequences. By constructing an appropriate Lyapunov-Krasovskii functional (LKF) and employing an average-dwell time approach, a new set of criteria is derived for ensuring the robust exponential stability of the closed-loop switched system. More precisely, the Schur complement and Jensen's integral inequality are used in derivation of stabilisation criteria. By considering the relationship among the random time-varying delay and its lower and upper bounds, a new set of sufficient condition is established for the existence of reliable robust sampled-data control in terms of solution to linear matrix inequalities (LMIs). Finally, an illustrative example based on the F-18 aircraft model is provided to show the effectiveness of the proposed design procedures.

  9. One year effectiveness of an individualised smoking cessation intervention at the workplace: a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Rodriguez-Artalej..., F; Lafuente, U; Guallar-Castillon, P; Garteizaurrekoa, D.; Sainz, M; Diez, A; Foj, A; Banegas, J

    2003-01-01

    Aims: To assess the effectiveness of a smoking cessation intervention at the workplace. The intervention was adapted to smokers‘ tobacco dependence, and included minimal structured counselling at the first visit (5–8 minutes), nicotine patches for three months, and three sessions of counselling for reinforcement of abstinence (2–3 minutes) over a three month period. Methods: Open randomised trial with two groups: the intervention group, and the control group which was subjected to standard clinical practice, consisting of short (30 seconds to one minute) sporadic sessions of unstructured medical antismoking advice. The trial was carried out among 217 smokers of both sexes, aged 20–63 years, motivated to quit smoking and without contraindications for nicotine patches, who were employees at a public transport company and at two worksites of an electric company. The main outcome measure was self reported tobacco abstinence confirmed by carbon monoxide in expired air ≤10 ppm. Analysis was performed according to intention-to-treat. Results: The rate of continuous abstinence at 12 months was 20.2% for the intervention versus 8.7% for the control group (OR: 2.58; 95% CI: 1.13 to 5.90; p = 0.025). In subgroup analyses, effectiveness of the intervention did not vary substantially with age, tobacco dependence, number of cigarettes smoked per day, number of years of tobacco consumption, degree of desire to quit smoking, time spent with smokers, subjective health, and presence of tobacco related symptoms. Weight gain at 12 months was similar for both groups (1.69 kg in the intervention v 2.01 kg in the control group; p = 0.21). Conclusions: A simple and easily generalisable intervention at the workplace is effective to achieve long term smoking cessation. In a setting similar to ours, nine subjects would have to be treated for three months for one to achieve continuous abstinence for 12 months. PMID:12709522

  10. Robust control of multi-jointed arm with a decentralized autonomous control mechanism

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kimura, Shinichi; Miyazaki, Ken; Suzuki, Yoshiaki

    1994-01-01

    A decentralized autonomous control mechanism applied to the control of three dimensional manipulators and its robustness to partial damage was assessed by computer simulation. Decentralized control structures are believed to be quite robust to time delay between the operator and the target system. A 10-jointed manipulator based on our control mechanism was able to continue its positioning task in three-dimensional space without revision of the control program, even after some of its joints were damaged. These results suggest that this control mechanism can be effectively applied to space telerobots, which are associated with serious time delay between the operator and the target system, and which cannot be easily repaired after being partially damaged.

  11. How to control if even experts are not sure: Robust fuzzy control

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nguyen, Hung T.; Kreinovich, Vladik YA.; Lea, Robert; Tolbert, Dana

    1992-01-01

    In real life, the degrees of certainty that correspond to one of the same expert can differ drastically, and fuzzy control algorithms translate these different degrees of uncertainty into different control strategies. In such situations, it is reasonable to choose a fuzzy control methodology that is the least vulnerable to this kind of uncertainty. It is shown that this 'robustness' demand leads to min and max for &- and V-operations, to 1-x for negation, and to centroid as a defuzzification procedure.

  12. Robustness and Actuator Bandwidth of MRP-Based Sliding Mode Control for Spacecraft Attitude Control Problems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keum, Jung-Hoon; Ra, Sung-Woong

    2009-12-01

    Nonlinear sliding surface design in variable structure systems for spacecraft attitude control problems is studied. A robustness analysis is performed for regular form of system, and calculation of actuator bandwidth is presented by reviewing sliding surface dynamics. To achieve non-singular attitude description and minimal parameterization, spacecraft attitude control problems are considered based on modified Rodrigues parameters (MRP). It is shown that the derived controller ensures the sliding motion in pre-determined region irrespective of unmodeled effects and disturbances.

  13. Is self-monitoring of blood glucose effective in improving glycaemic control in type 2 diabetes without insulin treatment: a meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials

    PubMed Central

    Zhu, Hongmei; Zhu, Yanan; Leung, Siu-wai

    2016-01-01

    Objective The present study aimed to verify the effectiveness of self-monitoring of blood glucose (SMBG) in patients with non-insulin-treated type 2 diabetes (T2D). Methods A comprehensive literature search was conducted in PubMed, Cochrane Library, Web of Science, ScienceDirect and ClinicalTrials.gov from their respective inception dates to 26 October 2015. Eligible randomised controlled trials (RCTs) were included according to prespecified criteria. The quality of the included RCTs was evaluated according to the Cochrane risk of bias tool, and the evidence quality of meta-analyses was assessed by the Grading of Recommendation, Assessment, Development, and Evaluation (GRADE) criteria. A meta-analysis of primary and secondary outcome measures was performed. Sensitivity and subgroup analyses were carried out to evaluate the robustness and heterogeneity of the findings. Begg's and Egger's tests were used to quantify publication biases. Results A total of 15 RCTs, comprising 3383 patients with non-insulin-treated T2D, met the inclusion criteria. The SMBG intervention improved glycated haemoglobin (HbA1c) (mean difference −0.33; 95% CI −0.45 to −0.22; p=3.0730e−8; n=18), body mass index (BMI; −0.65; −1.18 to −0.12; p=0.0164; n=9) and total cholesterol (TC; −0.12; −0.20 to −0.04; p=0.0034; n=8) more effectively than the control in overall effect. The sensitivity analysis revealed little difference in overall effect, indicating the robustness of the results. SMBG moderated HbA1c levels better than the control in all subgroup analyses. Most of the RCTs had high risk of bias in blinding, while the overall quality of evidence for HbA1c was moderate according to the GRADE criteria. Publication bias was moderate for BMI. Conclusions SMBG improved HbA1c levels in the short term (≤6-month follow-up) and long term (≥12-month follow-up) in patients with T2D who were not using insulin. Trial registration number CRD42015019099. PMID:27591016

  14. Control design for robust stability in linear regulators: Application to aerospace flight control

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yedavalli, R. K.

    1986-01-01

    Time domain stability robustness analysis and design for linear multivariable uncertain systems with bounded uncertainties is the central theme of the research. After reviewing the recently developed upper bounds on the linear elemental (structured), time varying perturbation of an asymptotically stable linear time invariant regulator, it is shown that it is possible to further improve these bounds by employing state transformations. Then introducing a quantitative measure called the stability robustness index, a state feedback conrol design algorithm is presented for a general linear regulator problem and then specialized to the case of modal systems as well as matched systems. The extension of the algorithm to stochastic systems with Kalman filter as the state estimator is presented. Finally an algorithm for robust dynamic compensator design is presented using Parameter Optimization (PO) procedure. Applications in a aircraft control and flexible structure control are presented along with a comparison with other existing methods.

  15. A multi-centre randomised controlled trial of Transfusion Indication Threshold Reduction on transfusion rates, morbidity and healthcare resource use following cardiac surgery: Study protocol

    PubMed Central

    Brierley, Rachel C.M.; Pike, Katie; Miles, Alice; Wordsworth, Sarah; Stokes, Elizabeth A.; Mumford, Andrew D.; Cohen, Alan; Angelini, Gianni D.; Murphy, Gavin J.; Rogers, Chris A.; Reeves, Barnaby C.

    2014-01-01

    Thresholds for red blood cell transfusion following cardiac surgery vary by hospital and surgeon. The TITRe2 multi-centre randomised controlled trial aims to randomise 2000 patients from 17 United Kingdom centres, and tests the hypothesis that a restrictive transfusion threshold will reduce postoperative morbidity and health service costs compared to a liberal threshold. Patients consent to take part in the study pre-operatively but are only randomised if their haemoglobin falls below 9 g/dL during their post-operative hospital stay. The primary outcome is a binary composite outcome of any serious infectious or ischaemic event in the first three months after randomisation. Many challenges have been encountered in the set-up and running of the study. PMID:24675014

  16. Protocol to evaluate the impact of yoga supplementation on cognitive function in schizophrenia: a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Bhatia, Triptish; Mazumdar, Sati; Mishra, Nagendra Narayan; Gur, Raquel E.; Gur, Ruben C.; Nimgaonkar, Vishwajit Laxmikant; Deshpande, Smita Neelkanth

    2015-01-01

    Background Schizophrenia (SZ) is a chronic illness that is treated symptomatically. Cognitive dysfunction is a core feature of SZ that is relatively intractable to pharmacotherapy. Yoga can improve cognitive function among healthy individuals. A recent open trial indicated significant benefits of yoga training (YT) in conjunction with conventional pharmacotherapy among patients with SZ. Aims To describe the protocol for an ongoing randomised controlled trial designed to test whether the reported beneficial effects of YT on cognitive function among SZ patients can be replicated. Secondarily, the effects of YT on daily functioning living skills are evaluated. Methods Consenting patients with SZ receive routine clinical treatment and are randomised to adjunctive YT, adjunctive physical exercise (PE) or treatment as usual (proposed N = 234 total, N = 78 in each group). The trial involves YT or PE 5 days a week and lasts 3 weeks. Participants are evaluated thrice over 6 months. Cognitive functions measured by Trail Making Test, University of Pennsylvania Neurocognitive Computerised Battery were primary outcome measures while clinical severity and daily functioning measured by Independent Living Skills Survey were secondary outcome measures. Results A total of 309 participants have been randomised as of 31 August 2013, which exceeded beyond 294 proposed after attrition. Once participants begin YT or PE they generally complete the protocol. No injuries have been reported. Conclusions Short term YT is feasible and acceptable to Indian SZ patients. If beneficial effects of YT are detected, it will provide a novel adjunctive cognitive remediation strategy for SZ patients. PMID:25241756

  17. Managed Activity Graded Exercise iN Teenagers and pre-Adolescents (MAGENTA) feasibility randomised controlled trial: study protocol

    PubMed Central

    Brigden, Amberly; Beasant, Lucy; Hollingworth, William; Metcalfe, Chris; Gaunt, Daisy; Mills, Nicola; Jago, Russell; Crawley, Esther

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Paediatric chronic fatigue syndrome or myalgic encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME) is a relatively common and disabling condition, yet there is a limited evidence base for treatment. There is good evidence that graded exercise therapy is moderately effective in adults with CFS/ME, but there is little evidence for the effectiveness, cost-effectiveness, acceptability or best method of delivery for paediatric CFS/ME. This study aims to investigate the acceptability and feasibility of carrying out a multicentre randomised controlled trial investigating the effectiveness of graded exercise therapy compared with activity management for children/teenagers who are mildly or moderately affected with CFS/ME. Methods and analysis 100 paediatric patients (8–17 years) with CFS/ME will be recruited from 3 specialist UK National Health Service (NHS) CFS/ME services (Bath, Cambridge and Newcastle). Patients will be randomised (1:1) to receive either graded exercise therapy or activity management. Feasibility analysis will include the number of young people eligible, approached and consented to the trial; attrition rate and treatment adherence; questionnaire and accelerometer completion rates. Integrated qualitative methods will ascertain perceptions of feasibility and acceptability of recruitment, randomisation and the interventions. All adverse events will be monitored to assess the safety of the trial. Ethics and dissemination The trial has received ethical approval from the National Research Ethics Service (South West—Frenchay 15/SW/0124). Trial registration number ISRCTN23962803; Pre-results. PMID:27377634

  18. Randomised, double blind, placebo controlled trial of intravenous antioxidant (n‐acetylcysteine, selenium, vitamin C) therapy in severe acute pancreatitis

    PubMed Central

    Siriwardena, Ajith K; Mason, James M; Balachandra, Srinivasan; Bagul, Anil; Galloway, Simon; Formela, Laura; Hardman, Jonathan G; Jamdar, Saurabh

    2007-01-01

    Background Based on equivocal clinical data, intravenous antioxidant therapy has been used for the treatment of severe acute pancreatitis. To date there is no randomised comparison of this therapy in severe acute pancreatitis. Methods We conducted a randomised, double blind, placebo controlled trial of intravenous antioxidant (n‐acetylcysteine, selenium, vitamin C) therapy in patients with predicted severe acute pancreatitis. Forty‐three patients were enrolled from three hospitals in the Manchester (UK) area over the period June 2001 to November 2004. Randomisation stratified for APACHE‐II score and hospital site, and delivered groups that were similar at baseline. Results Relative serum levels of antioxidants rose while markers of oxidative stress fell in the active treatment group during the course of the trial. However, at 7 days, there was no statistically significant difference in the primary end point, organ dysfunction (antioxidant vs placebo: 32% vs 17%, p = 0.33) or any secondary end point of organ dysfunction or patient outcome. Conclusions This study provides no evidence to justify continued use of n‐acetylcysteine, selenium, vitamin C based antioxidant therapy in severe acute pancreatitis. In the context of any future trial design, careful consideration must be given to the risks raised by the greater trend towards adverse outcome in patients in the treatment arm of this study. PMID:17356040

  19. Rapid tranquillisation in psychiatric emergency settings in India: pragmatic randomised controlled trial of intramuscular olanzapine versus intramuscular haloperidol plus promethazine

    PubMed Central

    Raveendran, Nirmal S; Alexander, Jacob; Adams, Clive Elliot

    2007-01-01

    Objective To compare the effect of intramuscular olanzapine with intramuscular haloperidol plus promethazine on rapid tranquillisation of agitated or violent people with mental illness. Design Pragmatic, allocation concealed, randomised controlled trial. Setting Emergency services of a general hospital psychiatry department in Vellore, south India. Participants 300 adults with agitated or violent behaviour as a result of mental illness; 150 randomised to intramuscular olanzapine and 150 randomised to intramuscular haloperidol plus promethazine. Interventions Open treatment with intramuscular olanzapine or intramuscular haloperidol plus promethazine. Main outcome measures Primary outcome was proportion of patients who were tranquil or asleep at 15 minutes and 240 minutes. Secondary outcomes were proportion of patients who were tranquil, asleep, restrained, absconding, or clinically improved at 15, 30, 60, 120, and 240 minutes; additional medical interventions and adverse effects over four hours; and compliance with oral drugs and adverse effects over two weeks. Results Of 300 people randomised to receive either intramuscular olanzapine or intramuscular haloperidol plus promethazine, follow-up data were available for primary outcomes for 298 (99%). Both treatments resulted in similar proportions of people being tranquil or asleep at 15 minutes (olanzapine 131/150 (87%), haloperidol plus promethazine 136/150 (91%); relative risk 0.96, 95% confidence interval 0.34 to 1.47) and 240 minutes (olanzapine 144/150 (96%), haloperidol plus promethazine 145/150 (97%); relative risk 0.99, 0.95 to 1.03). However, more people given olanzapine than those given haloperidol plus promethazine required additional drugs over four hours (65/150 (43%) v 31/150 (21%); relative risk 2.07, 1.43 to 2.97). Adverse effects were uncommon with both treatments. Conclusions Intramuscular olanzapine and intramuscular haloperidol plus promethazine were effective at rapidly tranquillising or sedating

  20. Levonorgestrel-Releasing Intrauterine System vs. Usual Medical Treatment for Menorrhagia: An Economic Evaluation Alongside a Randomised Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    Sanghera, Sabina; Roberts, Tracy Elizabeth; Barton, Pelham; Frew, Emma; Daniels, Jane; Middleton, Lee; Gennard, Laura; Kai, Joe; Gupta, Janesh Kumar

    2014-01-01

    Objective To undertake an economic evaluation alongside the largest randomised controlled trial comparing Levonorgestrel-releasing intrauterine device (‘LNG-IUS’) and usual medical treatment for women with menorrhagia in primary care; and compare the cost-effectiveness findings using two alternative measures of quality of life. Methods 571 women with menorrhagia from 63 UK centres were randomised between February 2005 and July 2009. Women were randomised to having a LNG-IUS fitted, or usual medical treatment, after discussing with their general practitioner their contraceptive needs or desire to avoid hormonal treatment. The treatment was specified prior to randomisation. For the economic evaluation we developed a state transition (Markov) model with a 24 month follow-up. The model structure was informed by the trial women's pathway and clinical experts. The economic evaluation adopted a UK National Health Service perspective and was based on an outcome of incremental cost per Quality Adjusted Life Year (QALY) estimated using both EQ-5D and SF-6D. Results Using EQ-5D, LNG-IUS was the most cost-effective treatment for menorrhagia. LNG-IUS costs £100 more than usual medical treatment but generated 0.07 more QALYs. The incremental cost-effectiveness ratio for LNG-IUS compared to usual medical treatment was £1600 per additional QALY. Using SF-6D, usual medical treatment was the most cost-effective treatment. Usual medical treatment was both less costly (£100) and generated 0.002 more QALYs. Conclusion Impact on quality of life is the primary indicator of treatment success in menorrhagia. However, the most cost-effective treatment differs depending on the quality of life measure used to estimate the QALY. Under UK guidelines LNG-IUS would be the recommended treatment for menorrhagia. This study demonstrates that the appropriate valuation of outcomes in menorrhagia is crucial. PMID:24638071

  1. Evaluating holistic needs assessment in outpatient cancer care—a randomised controlled trial: the study protocol

    PubMed Central

    Snowden, Austyn; Young, Jenny; White, Craig; Murray, Esther; Richard, Claude; Lussier, Marie-Therese; MacArthur, Ewan; Storey, Dawn; Schipani, Stefano; Wheatley, Duncan; McMahon, Jeremy; Ross, Elaine

    2015-01-01

    Introduction People living with and beyond cancer are vulnerable to a number of physical, functional and psychological issues. Undertaking a holistic needs assessment (HNA) is one way to support a structured discussion of patients’ needs within a clinical consultation. However, there is little evidence on how HNA impacts on the dynamics of the clinical consultation. This study aims to establish (1) how HNA affects the type of conversation that goes on during a clinical consultation and (2) how these putative changes impact on shared decision-making and self-efficacy. Methods and analysis The study is hosted by 10 outpatient oncology clinics in the West of Scotland and South West England. Participants are patients with a diagnosis of head and neck, breast, urological, gynaecological and colorectal cancer who have received treatment for their cancer. Patients are randomised to an intervention or control group. The control group entails standard care—routine consultation between the patient and clinician. In the intervention group, the patient completes a holistic needs assessment prior to consultation. The completed assessment is then given to the clinician where it informs a discussion based on the patient's needs and concerns as identified by them. The primary outcome measure is patient participation, as determined by dialogue ratio (DR) and preponderance of initiative (PI) within the consultation. The secondary outcome measures are shared decision-making and self-efficacy. It is hypothesised that HNA will be associated with greater patient participation within the consultation, and that shared decision-making and feelings of self-efficacy will increase as a function of the intervention. Ethics and dissemination This study has been given a favourable opinion by the West of Scotland Research Ethics Committee and NHS Research & Development. Study findings will be disseminated through peer-reviewed publications and conference attendance. Trail registration number

  2. Randomised controlled trial of an aggressive nutritional regimen in sick very low birthweight infants

    PubMed Central

    Wilson, D.; Cairns, P.; Halliday, H.; Reid, M.; McClure, G.; Dodge, J.

    1997-01-01

    AIMS—To improve energy intake in sick very low birthweight (VLBW) infants; to decrease growth problems, lessen pulmonary morbidity, shorten hospital stay, and avoid possible feeding related morbidity. Morbidity in VLBW infants thought to be associated with parenteral and enteral feeding includes bronchopulmonary dysplasia, necrotising enterocolitis, septicaemia, cholestasis and osteopenia of prematurity.
METHODS—A prospective randomised controlled trial (RCT) comparing two types of nutritional intervention was performed involving 125 sick VLBW infants in the setting of a regional neonatal intensive care unit. Babies were randomly allocated to either an aggressive nutritional regimen (group A) or a control group (group B). Babies in group B received a conservative nutritional regimen while group A received a package of more aggressive parenteral and enteral nutrition. Statistical analysis was done using Student's t test, the Mann-Whitney U test, the χ2 test and logistic regression.
RESULTS—There was an excess of sicker babies in group A, as measured by initial disease severity (P <0.01), but mean total energy intakes were significantly higher (P <0.001) in group A at days 3 to 42 while receiving total or partial parenteral nutrition. Survival and the incidences of bronchopulmonary dysplasia, septicaemia, cholestasis, osteopenia and necrotising enterocolitis were similar in both groups. Growth in early life and at discharge from hospital was significantly better in babies in group A. There were no decreases in pulmonary morbidity or hospital stay.
CONCLUSION—Nutritional intake in sick VLBW infants can be improved without increasing the risk of adverse clinical or metabolic sequelae. Improved nutritional intake resulted in better growth, both in the early neonatal period and at hospital discharge, but did not decrease pulmonary morbidity or shorten hospital stay.

 Keywords: very low birthweight infant; nutrition; bronchopulmonary dysplasia

  3. Children Learning About Secondhand Smoke (CLASS II): protocol of a pilot cluster randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Siddiqi, Kamran; Huque, Rumana; Jackson, Cath; Parrott, Steve; Dogar, Omara; Shah, Sarwat; Thomson, Heather; Sheikh, Aziz

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Exposure to secondhand smoke (SHS) increases children’s risk of acquiring chest and ear infections, tuberculosis, meningitis and asthma. Smoking bans in public places (where implemented) have significantly reduced adults’ exposure to SHS. However, for children, homes remain the most likely place for them to be exposed to SHS. Additional measures are therefore required to protect children from SHS. In a feasibility study in Dhaka, Bangladesh, we have shown that a school-based smoke-free intervention (SFI) was successful in encouraging children to negotiate and implement smoking restrictions in homes. We will now conduct a pilot trial to inform plans to undertake a cluster randomised controlled trial (RCT) investigating the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of SFI in reducing children’s exposure to SHS. Methods and analysis We plan to recruit 12 primary schools in Dhaka, Bangladesh. From these schools, we will recruit approximately 360 schoolchildren in year 5 (10–12 years old), that is, 30 per school. SFI consists of six interactive educational activities aimed at increasing pupils’ knowledge about SHS and related harms, motivating them to act, providing skills to negotiate with adults to persuade them not to smoke inside homes and helping families to ‘sign-up’ to a voluntary contract to make their homes smoke-free. Children in the control arm will receive the usual education. We will estimate: recruitment and attrition rates, acceptability, fidelity to SFI, effect size, intracluster correlation coefficient, cost of intervention and adverse events. Our primary outcome will consist of SHS exposure in children measured by salivary cotinine. Secondary outcomes will include respiratory symptoms, lung function tests, healthcare contacts, school attendance, smoking uptake, quality of life and academic performance. Ethics and dissemination The trial has received ethics approval from the Research Governance Committee at the University of York

  4. Group hypnosis vs. relaxation for smoking cessation in adults: a cluster-randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Despite the popularity of hypnotherapy for smoking cessation, the efficacy of this method is unclear. We aimed to investigate the efficacy of a single-session of group hypnotherapy for smoking cessation compared to relaxation in Swiss adult smokers. Methods This was a cluster-randomised, parallel-group, controlled trial. A single session of hypnosis or relaxation for smoking cessation was delivered to groups of smokers (median size = 11). Participants were 223 smokers consuming ≥ 5 cigarettes per day, willing to quit and not using cessation aids (47.1% females, M = 37.5 years [SD = 11.8], 86.1% Swiss). Nicotine withdrawal, smoking abstinence self-efficacy, and adverse reactions were assessed at a 2-week follow-up. The main outcome, self-reported 30-day point prevalence of smoking abstinence, was assessed at a 6-month follow up. Abstinence was validated through salivary analysis. Secondary outcomes included number of cigarettes smoked per day, smoking abstinence self-efficacy, and nicotine withdrawal. Results At the 6-month follow up, 14.7% in the hypnosis group and 17.8% in the relaxation group were abstinent. The intervention had no effect on smoking status (p = .73) or on the number of cigarettes smoked per day (p = .56). Smoking abstinence self-efficacy did not differ between the interventions (p = .14) at the 2-week follow-up, but non-smokers in the hypnosis group experienced reduced withdrawal (p = .02). Both interventions produced few adverse reactions (p = .81). Conclusions A single session of group hypnotherapy does not appear to be more effective for smoking cessation than a group relaxation session. Trial registration Current Controlled Trials ISRCTN72839675. PMID:24365274

  5. A randomised controlled trial of small particle inhaled steroids in refractory eosinophilic asthma (SPIRA)

    PubMed Central

    Hodgson, David; Anderson, John; Reynolds, Catherine; Meakin, Garry; Bailey, Helen; Pavord, Ian; Shaw, Dominick; Harrison, Tim

    2015-01-01

    Background Some patients with refractory asthma have evidence of uncontrolled eosinophilic inflammation in the distal airways. While traditional formulations of inhaled steroids settle predominantly in the large airways, newer formulations with an extra-fine particle size have a more peripheral pattern of deposition. Specifically treating distal airway inflammation may improve asthma control. Methods 30 patients with refractory asthma despite high dose inhaled corticosteroids were identified as having persistent airway eosinophilia. Following 2 weeks of prednisolone 30 mg, patients demonstrating an improvement in asthma control were randomised to receive either ciclesonide 320 µg twice daily or placebo in addition to usual maintenance therapy for 8 weeks. The primary outcome measure was sputum eosinophil count at week 8. Alveolar nitric oxide was measured as a marker of distal airway inflammation. Results There was continued suppression of differential sputum eosinophil counts with ciclesonide (median 2.3%) but not placebo (median 4.5%) though the between-group difference was not significant. When patients who had changed their maintenance prednisolone dose during the trial were excluded the difference between groups was significant (1.4% vs 4.5%, p=0.028). Though alveolar nitric oxide decreased with ciclesonide the value did not reach statistical significance. Conclusions These data demonstrate that patients with ongoing eosinophilic inflammation are not truly refractory, and that suppression of airway eosinophilia may be maintained with additional inhaled corticosteroid. Further work is needed with a focus on patient-orientated outcome measures such as exacerbation rate, with additional tests of small airway function. Trial registration number NCT01171365. Protocol available at http://www.clinicaltrials.gov. PMID:25858909

  6. Robust Control of Uncertain Systems via Dissipative LQG-Type Controllers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Joshi, Suresh M.

    2000-01-01

    Optimal controller design is addressed for a class of linear, time-invariant systems which are dissipative with respect to a quadratic power function. The system matrices are assumed to be affine functions of uncertain parameters confined to a convex polytopic region in the parameter space. For such systems, a method is developed for designing a controller which is dissipative with respect to a given power function, and is simultaneously optimal in the linear-quadratic-Gaussian (LQG) sense. The resulting controller provides robust stability as well as optimal performance. Three important special cases, namely, passive, norm-bounded, and sector-bounded controllers, which are also LQG-optimal, are presented. The results give new methods for robust controller design in the presence of parametric uncertainties.

  7. Robust closed-loop control of propofol administration using WAVCNS index as the controlled variable.

    PubMed

    Hahn, Jin-Oh; Dumont, Guy A; Ansermino, J

    2010-01-01

    This paper presents a robust closed-loop strategy for control of depth of hypnosis. The proposed method regulates the electroencephalogram (EEG)-derived WAVCNS index as a hypnosis measure by manipulating intravenous propofol administration. In contrast to many existing closed-loop methods, the control design presented in this paper produces stability and robustness against uncertainty by explicitly accounting for the pharmacokinetic (PK) and pharmacodynamic (PD) variability between different individuals, as well as unpredictable surgical stimuli that the closed-loop control is required to tolerate. This closed-loop control was evaluated using simulated surgical procedures in 44 patient models whose PK and PD were identified from real clinical data. The controller can deliver consistent and acceptable closed-loop induction and maintenance phase responses for patients with wide-ranging PK and PD differences. PMID:21097118

  8. Robust Multivariable Flutter Suppression for the Benchmark Active Control Technology (BACT) Wind-Tunnel Model

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Waszak, Martin R.

    1997-01-01

    The Benchmark Active Controls Technology (BACT) project is part of NASA Langley Research Center s Benchmark Models Program for studying transonic aeroelastic phenomena. In January of 1996 the BACT wind-tunnel model was used to successfully demonstrate the application of robust multivariable control design methods (H and -synthesis) to flutter suppression. This paper addresses the design and experimental evaluation of robust multivariable flutter suppression control laws with particular attention paid to the degree to which stability and performance robustness was achieved.

  9. TREC-SAVE: a randomised trial comparing mechanical restraints with use of seclusion for aggressive or violent seriously mentally ill people: study protocol for a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Thousands of people whose aggression is thought due to serious mental illness are secluded or restrained every day. Without fair testing these techniques will continue to be used outside of a rigorous evidence base. With such coercive treatment this leaves all concerned vulnerable to abuse and criticism. This paper presents the protocol for a randomised trial comparing seclusion with restraints for people with serious mental illnesses. Methods/Design Setting-General psychiatric wards of a large psychiatric hospital in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Participants-Anyone aggressive or violent suspected or known to have serious mental illness for whom restriction is felt to be indicated by nursing and medical staff, but also for whom they are unsure whether seclusion or restraint would be indicated. Interventions-The standard care of either strong cotton banding to edge of bed with medications as indicated and close observation or the other standard care of use of a minimally furnished seclusion room but with open but barred windows onto the nursing station. Outcomes-time to restrictions lifted, early change of treatment, additional episodes, adverse effects/events, satisfaction with care during episode. Duration-2 weeks. Identifier: ISRCTN 49454276 http://www.controlled-trials.com/ISRCTN49454276 PMID:21774823

  10. A modular robust control framework for control of movement elicited by multi-electrode intraspinal microstimulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roshani, Amir; Erfanian, Abbas

    2016-08-01

    Objective. An important issue in restoring motor function through intraspinal microstimulation (ISMS) is the motor control. To provide a physiologically plausible motor control using ISMS, it should be able to control the individual motor unit which is the lowest functional unit of motor control. By focal stimulation only a small group of motor neurons (MNs) within a motor pool can be activated. Different groups of MNs within a motor pool can potentially be activated without involving adjacent motor pools by local stimulation of different parts of a motor pool via microelectrode array implanted into a motor pool. However, since the system has multiple inputs with single output during multi-electrode ISMS, it poses a challenge to movement control. In this paper, we proposed a modular robust control strategy for movement control, whereas multi-electrode array is implanted into each motor activation pool of a muscle. Approach. The controller was based on the combination of proportional-integral-derivative and adaptive fuzzy sliding mode control. The global stability of the controller was guaranteed. Main results. The results of the experiments on rat models showed that the multi-electrode control can provide a more robust control and accurate tracking performance than a single-electrode control. The control output can be pulse amplitude (pulse amplitude modulation, PAM) or pulse width (pulse width modulation, PWM) of the stimulation signal. The results demonstrated that the controller with PAM provided faster convergence rate and better tracking performance than the controller with PWM. Significance. This work represents a promising control approach to the restoring motor functions using ISMS. The proposed controller requires no prior knowledge about the dynamics of the system to be controlled and no offline learning phase. The proposed control design is modular in the sense that each motor pool has an independent controller and each controller is able to control ISMS

  11. Optimal robust control of drug delivery in cancer chemotherapy: a comparison between three control approaches.

    PubMed

    Moradi, Hamed; Vossoughi, Gholamreza; Salarieh, Hassan

    2013-10-01

    During the drug delivery process in chemotherapy, both of the cancer cells and normal healthy cells may be killed. In this paper, three mathematical cell-kill models including log-kill hypothesis, Norton-Simon hypothesis and Emax hypothesis are considered. Three control approaches including optimal linear regulation, nonlinear optimal control based on variation of extremals and H∞-robust control based on μ-synthesis are developed. An appropriate cost function is defined such that the amount of required drug is minimized while the tumor volume is reduced. For the first time, performance of the system is investigated and compared for three control strategies; applied on three nonlinear models of the process. In additions, their efficiency is compared in the presence of model parametric uncertainties. It is observed that in the presence of model uncertainties, controller designed based on variation of extremals is more efficient than the linear regulation controller. However, H∞-robust control is more efficient in improving robust performance of the uncertain models with faster tumor reduction and minimum drug usage. PMID:23891423

  12. Injury risk in runners using standard or motion control shoes: a randomised controlled trial with participant and assessor blinding

    PubMed Central

    Malisoux, Laurent; Chambon, Nicolas; Delattre, Nicolas; Gueguen, Nils; Urhausen, Axel; Theisen, Daniel

    2016-01-01

    Background/aim This randomised controlled trial investigated if the usage of running shoes with a motion control system modifies injury risk in regular leisure-time runners compared to standard shoes, and if this influence depends on foot morphology. Methods Recreational runners (n=372) were given either the motion control or the standard version of a regular running shoe model and were followed up for 6 months regarding running activity and injury. Foot morphology was analysed using the Foot Posture Index method. Cox regression analyses were used to compare injury risk between the two groups, based on HRs and their 95% CIs, controlling for potential confounders. Stratified analyses were conducted to evaluate the effect of motion control system in runners with supinated, neutral and pronated feet. Results The overall injury risk was lower among the participants who had received motion control shoes (HR=0.55; 95% CI 0.36 to 0.85) compared to those receiving standard shoes. This positive effect was only observed in the stratum of runners with pronated feet (n=94; HR=0.34; 95% CI 0.13 to 0.84); there was no difference in runners with neutral (n=218; HR=0.78; 95% CI 0.44 to 1.37) or supinated feet (n=60; HR=0.59; 95% CI 0.20 to 1.73). Runners with pronated feet using standard shoes had a higher injury risk compared to those with neutral feet (HR=1.80; 95% CI 1.01 to 3.22). Conclusions The overall injury risk was lower in participants who had received motion control shoes. Based on secondary analysis, those with pronated feet may benefit most from this shoe type. PMID:26746907

  13. Non-invasive vagus nerve stimulation for PREVention and Acute treatment of chronic cluster headache (PREVA): A randomised controlled study

    PubMed Central

    Diener, Hans-Christoph; Silver, Nicholas; Magis, Delphine; Reuter, Uwe; Andersson, Annelie; Liebler, Eric J; Straube, Andreas

    2015-01-01

    Background Chronic cluster headache (CH) is a debilitating disorder for which few well-controlled studies demonstrate effectiveness of available therapies. Non-invasive vagus nerve stimulation (nVNS) was examined as adjunctive prophylactic treatment of chronic CH. Methods PREVA was a prospective, open-label, randomised study that compared adjunctive prophylactic nVNS (n = 48) with standard of care (SoC) alone (control (n = 49)). A two-week baseline phase was followed by a four-week randomised phase (SoC plus nVNS vs control) and a four-week extension phase (SoC plus nVNS). The primary end point was the reduction in the mean number of CH attacks per week. Response rate, abortive medication use and safety/tolerability were also assessed. Results During the randomised phase, individuals in the intent-to-treat population treated with SoC plus nVNS (n = 45) had a significantly greater reduction in the number of attacks per week vs controls (n = 48) (−5.9 vs −2.1, respectively) for a mean therapeutic gain of 3.9 fewer attacks per week (95% CI: 0.5, 7.2; p = 0.02). Higher ≥50% response rates were also observed with SoC plus nVNS (40% (18/45)) vs controls (8.3% (4/48); p < 0.001). No serious treatment-related adverse events occurred. Conclusion Adjunctive prophylactic nVNS is a well-tolerated novel treatment for chronic CH, offering clinical benefits beyond those with SoC. PMID:26391457

  14. A pilot randomised controlled trial of eccentric exercise to prevent hamstring injuries in community-level Australian Football.

    PubMed

    Gabbe, B J; Branson, R; Bennell, K L

    2006-05-01

    Hamstring injuries are the most common injury sustained by Australian Football players. Eccentric training has been proposed as a potential preventative strategy. This pilot randomised controlled trial (RCT) evaluated the effectiveness of a pre-season eccentric training program for preventing hamstring injuries at the community level of Australian Football. Seven amateur clubs (n=220 players) were recruited. Players were randomised within clubs to the intervention (eccentric exercise) or control (stretching) groups and randomisation was stratified according to previous history of hamstring injury. Five exercise sessions were completed over a 12-week period, three during the pre-season and two during the first 6 weeks of the season. Compliance was recorded and players were monitored for the season to collect injury and participation data. There was no difference between the control (n=106) or intervention (n=114) groups with respect to baseline characteristics. Only 46.8% of all players completed at least two program sessions. Compliance was poorest for the intervention group. Intention-to-treat analysis suggested that players in the intervention group were not at reduced risk of hamstring injury (RR 1.2, 95% CI: 0.5, 2.8). When only control and intervention group players who participated in at least the first two sessions were analysed, 4.0% of intervention and 13.2% of control group players sustained a hamstring injury (RR 0.3, 95% CI: 0.1, 1.4; p=0.098). The findings suggest that a simple program of eccentric exercise could reduce the incidence of hamstring injuries in Australian Football but widespread implementation of this program is not likely because of poor compliance.

  15. Exercise and manual physiotherapy arthritis research trial (EMPART): a multicentre randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    French, Helen P; Cusack, Tara; Brennan, Aisling; White, Breon; Gilsenan, Clare; Fitzpatrick, Martina; O'Connell, Paul; Kane, David; FitzGerald, Oliver; McCarthy, Geraldine M

    2009-01-01

    Background Osteoarthritis (OA) of the hip is a major cause of functional disability and reduced quality of life. Management options aim to reduce pain and improve or maintain physical functioning. Current evidence indicates that therapeutic exercise has a beneficial but short-term effect on pain and disability, with poor long-term benefit. The optimal content, duration and type of exercise are yet to be ascertained. There has been little scientific investigation into the effectiveness of manual therapy in hip OA. Only one randomized controlled trial (RCT) found greater improvements in patient-perceived improvement and physical function with manual therapy, compared to exercise therapy. Methods and design An assessor-blind multicentre RCT will be undertaken to compare the effect of a combination of manual therapy and exercise therapy, exercise therapy only, and a waiting-list control on physical function in hip OA. One hundred and fifty people with a diagnosis of hip OA will be recruited and randomly allocated to one of 3 groups: exercise therapy, exercise therapy with manual therapy and a waiting-list control. Subjects in the intervention groups will attend physiotherapy for 6–8 sessions over 8 weeks. Those in the control group will remain on the waiting list until after this time and will then be re-randomised to one of the two intervention groups. Outcome measures will include physical function (WOMAC), pain severity (numerical rating scale), patient perceived change (7-point Likert scale), quality of life (SF-36), mood (hospital anxiety and depression scale), patient satisfaction, physical activity (IPAQ) and physical measures of range of motion, 50-foot walk and repeated sit-to stand tests. Discussion This RCT will compare the effectiveness of the addition of manual therapy to exercise therapy to exercise therapy only and a waiting-list control in hip OA. A high quality methodology will be used in keeping with CONSORT guidelines. The results will contribute

  16. Educating novice practitioners to detect elder financial abuse: a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Health and social care professionals are well positioned to identify and intervene in cases of elder financial abuse. An evidence-based educational intervention was developed to advance practitioners’ decision-making in this domain. The objective was to test the effectiveness of a decision-training educational intervention on novices’ ability to detect elder financial abuse. The research was funded by an E.S.R.C. grant reference RES-189-25-0334. Methods A parallel-group, randomised controlled trial was conducted using a judgement analysis approach. Each participant used the World Wide Web to judge case sets at pre-test and post-test. The intervention group was provided with training after pre-test testing, whereas the control group were purely given instructions to continue with the task. 154 pre-registration health and social care practitioners were randomly allocated to intervention (n78) or control (n76). The intervention comprised of written and graphical descriptions of an expert consensus standard explaining how case information should be used to identify elder financial abuse. Participants’ ratings of certainty of abuse occurring (detection) were correlated with the experts’ ratings of the same cases at both stages of testing. Results At pre-test, no differences were found between control and intervention on rating capacity. Comparison of mean scores for the control and intervention group at pre-test compared to immediate post-test, showed a statistically significant result. The intervention was shown to have had a positive moderate effect; at immediate post-test, the intervention group’s ratings had become more similar to those of the experts, whereas the control’s capacity did not improve. The results of this study indicate that the decision-training intervention had a positive effect on detection ability. Conclusions This freely available, web-based decision-training aid is an effective evidence-based educational resource. Health

  17. Interventions to reduce unintended pregnancies among adolescents: systematic review of randomised controlled trials

    PubMed Central

    DiCenso, Alba; Guyatt, Gordon; Willan, A; Griffith, L

    2002-01-01

    Objective To review the effectiveness of primary prevention strategies aimed at delaying sexual intercourse, improving use of birth control, and reducing incidence of unintended pregnancy in adolescents. Data sources 12 electronic bibliographic databases, 10 key journals, citations of relevant articles, and contact with authors. Study selection 26 trials described in 22 published and unpublished reports that randomised adolescents to an intervention or a control group (alternate intervention or nothing). Data extraction Two independent reviewers assessed methodological quality and abstracted data. Data synthesis The interventions did not delay initiation of sexual intercourse in young women (pooled odds ratio 1.12; 95% confidence interval 0.96 to 1.30) or young men (0.99; 0.84 to 1.16); did not improve use of birth control by young women at every intercourse (0.95; 0.69 to 1.30) or at last intercourse (1.05; 0.50 to 2.19) or by young men at every intercourse (0.90; 0.70 to 1.16) or at last intercourse (1.25; 0.99 to 1.59); and did not reduce pregnancy rates in young women (1.04; 0.78 to 1.40). Four abstinence programmes and one school based sex education programme were associated with an increase in number of pregnancies among partners of young male participants (1.54; 1.03 to 2.29). There were significantly fewer pregnancies in young women who received a multifaceted programme (0.41; 0.20 to 0.83), though baseline differences in this study favoured the intervention. Conclusions Primary prevention strategies evaluated to date do not delay the initiation of sexual intercourse, improve use of birth control among young men and women, or reduce the number of pregnancies in young women. What is already known on this topicUnintended pregnancies among adolescents pose a considerable problem for the young parents, the child, and societyWhat this study addsPrimary prevention strategies evaluated to date do not delay the initiation of sexual intercourse or improve use of

  18. Lebrikizumab in moderate-to-severe asthma: pooled data from two randomised placebo-controlled studies

    PubMed Central

    Hanania, Nicola A; Noonan, Michael; Corren, Jonathan; Korenblat, Phillip; Zheng, Yanan; Fischer, Saloumeh K; Cheu, Melissa; Putnam, Wendy S; Murray, Elaine; Scheerens, Heleen; Holweg, Cecile TJ; Maciuca, Romeo; Gray, Sarah; Doyle, Ramona; McClintock, Dana; Olsson, Julie; Matthews, John G; Yen, Karl

    2015-01-01

    Introduction In a subset of patients with asthma, standard-of-care treatment does not achieve disease control, highlighting the need for novel therapeutic approaches. Lebrikizumab is a humanised, monoclonal antibody that binds to and blocks interleukin-13 activity. Methods LUTE and VERSE were replicate, randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled studies, evaluating multiple doses of lebrikizumab in patients with uncontrolled asthma despite the use of medium-to-high-dose inhaled corticosteroid and a second controller. Patients received lebrikizumab 37.5, 125, 250 mg or placebo subcutaneously every four weeks. The primary endpoint was the rate of asthma exacerbations during the placebo-controlled period. Analyses were performed on prespecified subgroups based on baseline serum periostin levels. Following the discovery of a host-cell impurity in the study drug material, protocols were amended to convert from phase III to phase IIb. Subsequently, dosing of study medication was discontinued early as a precautionary measure. The data collected for analysis were from a placebo-controlled period of variable duration and pooled across both studies. Results The median duration of treatment was approximately 24 weeks. Treatment with lebrikizumab reduced the rate of asthma exacerbations, which was more pronounced in the periostin-high patients (all doses: 60% reduction) than in the periostin-low patients (all doses: 5% reduction); no dose–response was evident. Lung function also improved following lebrikizumab treatment, with greatest increase in FEV1 in periostin-high patients (all doses: 9.1% placebo-adjusted improvement) compared with periostin-low patients (all doses: 2.6% placebo-adjusted improvement). Lebrikizumab was well tolerated and no clinically important safety signals were observed. Conclusions These data are consistent with, and extend, previously published results demonstrating the efficacy of lebrikizumab in improving rate of asthma exacerbations and

  19. Sequential docetaxel as adjuvant chemotherapy for early breast cancer (TACT): an open-label, phase III, randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Ellis, Paul; Barrett-Lee, Peter; Johnson, Lindsay; Cameron, David; Wardley, Andrew; O'Reilly, Susan; Verrill, Mark; Smith, Ian; Yarnold, John; Coleman, Robert; Earl, Helena; Canney, Peter; Twelves, Chris; Poole, Christopher; Bloomfield, David; Hopwood, Penelope; Johnston, Stephen; Dowsett, Mitchell; Bartlett, John MS; Ellis, Ian; Peckitt, Clare; Hall, Emma; Bliss, Judith M

    2009-01-01

    Summary Background Incorporation of a taxane as adjuvant treatment for early breast cancer offers potential for further improvement of anthracycline-based treatment. The UK TACT study (CRUK01/001) investigated whether sequential docetaxel after anthracycline chemotherapy would improve patient outcome compared with standard chemotherapy of similar duration. Methods In this multicentre, open-label, phase III, randomised controlled trial, 4162 women (aged >18 years) with node-positive or high-risk node-negative operable early breast cancer were randomly assigned by computer-generated permuted block randomisation to receive FEC (fluorouracil 600 mg/m2, epirubicin 60 mg/m2, cyclophosphamide 600 mg/m2 at 3-weekly intervals) for four cycles followed by docetaxel (100 mg/m2 at 3-weekly intervals) for four cycles (n=2073) or control (n=2089). For the control regimen, centres chose either FEC for eight cycles (n=1265) or epirubicin (100 mg/m2 at 3-weekly intervals) for four cycles followed by CMF (cyclophosphamide 600 mg/m2, methotrexate 40 mg/m2, and fluorouracil 600 mg/m2 at 4-weekly intervals) for four cycles (n=824). The primary endpoint was disease-free survival. Analysis was by intention to treat (ITT). This study is registered as an International Standard Randomised Controlled Trial, number ISRCTN79718493. Findings All randomised patients were included in the ITT population. With a median follow-up of 62 months, disease-free survival events were seen in 517 of 2073 patients in the experimental group compared with 539 of 2089 controls (hazard ratio [HR] 0·95, 95% CI 0·85–1·08; p=0·44). 75·6% (95% CI 73·7–77·5) of patients in the experimental group and 74·3% (72·3–76·2) of controls were alive and disease-free at 5 years. The proportion of patients who reported any acute grade 3 or 4 adverse event was significantly greater in the experimental group than in the control group (p<0·0001); the most frequent events were neutropenia (937 events vs 797 events

  20. Robust control of integrated motor-transmission powertrain system over controller area network for automotive applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Xiaoyuan; Zhang, Hui; Cao, Dongpu; Fang, Zongde

    2015-06-01

    Integrated motor-transmission (IMT) powertrain system with directly coupled motor and gearbox is a good choice for electric commercial vehicles (e.g., pure electric buses) due to its potential in motor size reduction and energy efficiency improvement. However, the controller design for powertrain oscillation damping becomes challenging due to the elimination of damping components. On the other hand, as controller area network (CAN) is commonly adopted in modern vehicle system, the network-induced time-varying delays that caused by bandwidth limitation will further lead to powertrain vibration or even destabilize the powertrain control system. Therefore, in this paper, a robust energy-to-peak controller is proposed for the IMT powertrain system to address the oscillation damping problem and also attenuate the external disturbance. The control law adopted here is based on a multivariable PI control, which ensures the applicability and performance of the proposed controller in engineering practice. With the linearized delay uncertainties characterized by polytopic inclusions, a delay-free closed-loop augmented system is established for the IMT powertrain system under discrete-time framework. The proposed controller design problem is then converted to a static output feedback (SOF) controller design problem where the feedback control gains are obtained by solving a set of linear matrix inequalities (LMIs). The effectiveness as well as robustness of the proposed controller is demonstrated by comparing its performance against that of a conventional PI controller.

  1. Do early quadriceps exercises affect the outcome of ACL reconstruction? A randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Shaw, Triston; Williams, Marie T; Chipchase, Lucy S

    2005-01-01

    A prospective, blinded, randomised controlled trial investigated the effectiveness of quadriceps exercises following anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction. A treatment group (Quadriceps exercise group) performed straight leg raises and isometric quadriceps contractions throughout the first two postoperative weeks, and a second group (No quadriceps exercise group) did not. A battery of outcome measures assessed subjects postoperatively at day one, two weeks, and one, three and six months. A total of 103 patients (Quadriceps exercise n = 48, No quadriceps exercise n = 55) commenced the study with 91 subjects available at final follow up (Quadriceps exercise n = 47, No quadriceps exercise n = 44). Performance of quadriceps exercises significantly improved a number of knee flexion and extension range of motion measurements (p = 0.01 to 0.04). No significant differences were found between the two groups at any postoperative period for quadriceps lag (p = 0.36), functional hop testing (p = 0.49 to 0.51), isokinetic quadriceps strength (p = 0.70 to 0.72), the majority of numerical analogue scores (p = 0.1 to 0.94) and Cincinnati scores (p = 0.10 to 0.84). Subjects performing quadriceps exercises reported significantly higher pain scores with exercise on the first postoperative day (p = 0.02). At six months postoperatively, the Quadriceps exercise subjects reported significantly more favourable Cincinnati scores for symptoms (p = 0.005) and problems with sport (p = 0.05). While average knee laxity was not significantly different between treatment groups over time (p = 0.27 to 0.94), quadriceps exercise performance was associated with a significantly lower incidence of abnormal knee laxity. Isometric quadriceps exercises and straight leg raises can be safely prescribed during the first two postoperative weeks and confer advantages for faster recovery of knee range of motion and stability. It remains to be proven whether the magnitude of differences between groups is

  2. New vertebral fractures after vertebroplasty: 2 year results from a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Staples, MP; Howe, BM; Ringler, MD; Mitchell, P; Wriedt, CHR; Wark, JD; Ebeling, PR; Osborne, RH; Kallmes, DF; Buchbinder, R

    2015-01-01

    Purpose To assess the effect of vertebroplasty (VP) on the risk of further radiologically apparent vertebral fracture within two years of the procedure. Methods We conducted a randomised placebo-controlled trial of VP in people with acute osteoporotic vertebral fracture. Eligible participants were randomly assigned to VP (n=38) or placebo (n=40). Cement volume and leakage were recorded for the VP group. Plain thoracolumbar radiographs were taken at baseline, 12 and 24 months. Two independent radiologists assessed these for new and progressed fractures at the same, adjacent and non-adjacent levels. Results At 12 and 24 months, radiographs were available for 45 (58%) and 47 (60%) participants respectively. There were no between-group differences for new or progressed fractures: 32 and 40 in the VP group after 12 and 24 months compared with 21 and 33 in the placebo group (hazard ratio (HR) 1.80, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.82 to 3.94). Similar results were seen when considering only adjacent (HR (95% CI): 2.30 (0.57 to 9.29)), and non-adjacent (HR (95% CI): 1.45 (0.55 to 3.81) levels. In all comparisons there was a consistent trend towards higher risk of any type of fracture in the group undergoing VP. Within the VP group, fracture risk was unrelated to total (HR (95% CI): 0.91 (0.71 to 1.17)) or relative (HR (95% CI): 1.31 (0.15 to 11.48)) cement volume, or cement leakage (HR (95% CI): 1.20 (0.63 to 2.31)). Conclusion For patients undergoing VP our study did not demonstrate significant increases in subsequent fracture risk beyond that experienced by those with vertebral fractures who did not undergo the procedure. However, because of the non-significant numerical increases observed, studies with adequate power are needed to draw definite conclusions about fracture risk. PMID:26272712

  3. Multidisciplinary rehabilitation for people with Parkinson's disease: a randomised controlled study

    PubMed Central

    Wade, D; Gage, H; Owen, C; Trend, P; Grossmith, C; Kaye, J

    2003-01-01

    Objective: To determine whether a programme of multidisciplinary rehabilitation and group support achieves sustained benefit for people with Parkinson's disease or their carers. Methods: The study was a randomised controlled crossover trial comparing patients and carers who had received rehabilitation four months before assessment with those who had not. Patients were recruited from a neurology clinic, attended a day hospital from home weekly for six weeks using private car or hospital transport, and received group educational activities and individual rehabilitation from a multidisciplinary team. Patients were assessed at entry and at six months using a 25 item self assessment Parkinson's disease disability questionnaire, Euroqol-5d, SF-36, PDQ-39, hospital anxiety and depression scale, and timed stand-walk-sit test. Carers were assessed using the carer strain index and Euroqol-5d. Results: 144 people with Parkinson's disease without severe cognitive losses and able to travel to hospital were registered (seven were duplicate registrations); 94 had assessments at baseline and six months. Repeated measures analysis of variance comparing patients at the 24 week crossover point showed that those receiving rehabilitation had a trend towards better stand-walk-sit score (p = 0.093) and worse general and mental health (p = 0.002, p = 0.019). Carers of treated patients had a trend towards more strain (p = 0.086). Analysis comparing patients before and six months after treatment showed worsening in disability, quality of life, and carer strain. Conclusions: Patients with Parkinson's disease decline significantly over six months, but a short spell of multidisciplinary rehabilitation may improve mobility. Follow up treatments may be needed to maintain any benefit. PMID:12531939

  4. Doubly blind: a systematic review of gender in randomised controlled trials

    PubMed Central

    Phillips, Susan P; Hamberg, Katarina

    2016-01-01

    Background Although observational data show social characteristics such as gender or socio-economic status to be strong predictors of health, their impact is seldom investigated in randomised controlled studies (RCTs). Objective & design Using a random sample of recent RCTs from high-impact journals, we examined how the most often recorded social characteristic, sex/gender, is considered in design, analysis, and interpretation. Of 712 RCTs published from September 2008 to 31 December 2013 in the Annals of Internal Medicine, British Medical Journal, Lancet, Canadian Medical Association Journal, or New England Journal of Medicine, we randomly selected 57 to analyse funding, methods, number of centres, documentation of social circumstances, inclusion/exclusion criteria, proportions of women/men, and reporting about sex/gender in analyses and discussion. Results Participants’ sex was recorded in most studies (52/57). Thirty-nine percent included men and women approximately equally. Overrepresentation of men in 43% of studies without explicit exclusions for women suggested interference in selection processes. The minority of studies that did analyse sex/gender differences (22%) did not discuss or reflect upon these, or dismissed significant findings. Two studies reinforced traditional beliefs about women's roles, finding no impact of breastfeeding on infant health but nevertheless reporting possible benefits. Questionable methods such as changing protocols mid-study, having undefined exclusion criteria, allowing local researchers to remove participants from studies, and suggesting possible benefit where none was found were evident, particularly in industry-funded research. Conclusions Social characteristics like sex/gender remain hidden from analyses and interpretation in RCTs, with loss of information and embedding of error all along the path from design to interpretation, and therefore, to uptake in clinical practice. Our results suggest that to broaden external

  5. Melatonin premedication versus placebo in wisdom teeth extraction: a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Seet, Edwin; Liaw, Chen Mei; Tay, Sylvia; Su, Chang

    2015-01-01

    INTRODUCTION Pain after wisdom teeth surgery can be moderate in severity and is compounded by preoperative anxiety in young patients. We studied the effect of melatonin premedication on postoperative pain and preoperative anxiety in patients undergoing wisdom teeth extractions. METHODS This randomised controlled trial recruited 76 patients at Khoo Teck Puat Hospital who were American Society of Anesthesiologists physical status I and II, aged 21 to 65 and scheduled to undergo elective extraction of all four wisdom teeth under general anaesthesia. Patients with a history of long-term use or allergy to melatonin were excluded. The patients received either 6 mg melatonin or a placebo 90 minutes before surgery. Visual analogue scale (VAS) scores at multiple time intervals for postoperative pain and preoperative anxiety, patient satisfaction and first-night sleep quality scores were obtained. Mixed-effects regression models were used for longitudinal analysis of VAS pain, anxiety and satisfaction scores. RESULTS Maximum VAS scores for pain and anxiety were 18.6 ± 19.1 mm at 60 minutes postoperatively and 26.2 ± 23.4 mm at 90 minutes preoperatively, respectively. After adjusting for gender, female patients who received melatonin had a faster rate of reduction of VAS pain (p = 0.020) and anxiety scores (p = 0.003) over time compared to the placebo group. No such effect was demonstrated in male patients. There was no significant difference in sleep quality or satisfaction scores. CONCLUSION Melatonin use did not consistently contribute to pain and anxiety amelioration in all patients. Our study demonstrated a positive effect in female patients, suggestive of sexual dimorphism. PMID:26702161

  6. Reporting trends of randomised controlled trials in heart failure with preserved ejection fraction: a systematic review

    PubMed Central

    Zheng, Sean L; Chan, Fiona T; Maclean, Edd; Jayakumar, Shruti; Nabeebaccus, Adam A

    2016-01-01

    Background Heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF) causes significant cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. Current consensus guidelines reflect the neutral results from randomised controlled trials (RCTs). Adequate trial reporting is a fundamental requirement before concluding on RCT intervention efficacy and is necessary for accurate meta-analysis and to provide insight into future trial design. The Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials (CONSORT) 2010 statement provides a framework for complete trial reporting. Reporting quality of HFpEF RCTs has not been previously assessed, and this represents an important validation of reporting qualities to date. Objectives The aim was to systematically identify RCTs investigating the efficacy of pharmacological therapies in HFpEF and to assess the quality of reporting using the CONSORT 2010 statement. Methods MEDLINE, EMBASE and CENTRAL databases were searched from January 1996 to November 2015, with RCTs assessing pharmacological therapies on clinical outcomes in HFpEF patients included. The quality of reporting was assessed against the CONSORT 2010 checklist. Results A total of 33 RCTs were included. The mean CONSORT score was 55.4% (SD 17.2%). The CONSORT score was strongly correlated with journal impact factor (r=0.53, p=0.003) and publication year (r=0.50, p=0.003). Articles published after the introduction of CONSORT 2010 statement had a significantly higher mean score compared with those published before (64% vs 50%, p=0.02). Conclusions Although the CONSORT score has increased with time, a significant proportion of HFpEF RCTs showed inadequate reporting standards. The level of adherence to CONSORT criteria could have an impact on the validity of trials and hence the interpretation of intervention efficacy. We recommend improving compliance with the CONSORT statement for future RCTs. PMID:27547434

  7. Gabapentin in postherpetic neuralgia: a randomised, double blind, placebo controlled study.

    PubMed

    Rice, A S; Maton, S

    2001-11-01

    A multicentre double blind, randomised, placebo controlled 7-week study evaluated the efficacy and safety of gabapentin 1800 or 2400 mg/day in treating postherpetic neuralgia. Three hundred and thirty-four men and women aged at least 18 years (mean 73) received gabapentin 1800 or 2400 mg daily or placebo in three divided doses with a forced titration schedule. The primary outcome measure was change in average daily pain diary score (baseline week v final week). Secondary outcomes included mean weekly sleep interference score; Short Form-McGill Pain Questionnaire (SF-MPQ); Clinician and Patient Global Impression of Change (CGIC/PGIC); Short Form-36 Health Survey (SF-36). From week 1, pain scores showed a significantly greater improvement with gabapentin: the final difference v baseline was -34.5% for the 1800 mg dose, -34.4% for the 2400 mg dose compared with -15.7% for the placebo group. The difference vs. placebo was 18.8% for the 1800 mg dose (95% confidence interval 10.9-26.8%; P<0.01) and 18.7% for the 2400 mg dose (10.7-26.7%; P<0.01). Sleep interference diaries showed a similar pattern. There were significant differences in favour of gabapentin for number of patients reporting >50% reduction in their pain intensity, in the CGIC and PGIC, in the sensory and total scores of the SF-MPQ (both doses), in the visual analogue scale of pain of the SF-MPQ (2400 mg only) and in the vitality, bodily pain and mental health domains of the SF-36. Overall gabapentin was well tolerated. The most common adverse events were dizziness and somnolence, particularly during the titration phase. Thus, this study confirms the role of gabapentin as an efficacious and well-tolerated treatment for postherpetic neuralgia.

  8. Discrepancies between registration and publication of randomised controlled trials: an observational study

    PubMed Central

    Stevenson, Graham; Thornton, James G

    2014-01-01

    Summary Objectives To determine the consistency between information contained in the registration and publication of randomised controlled trials (RCTs). Design An observational study of RCTs published between May 2011 and May 2012 in the British Medical Journal (BMJ) and the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) comparing registry data with publication data. Participants and Settings Data extracted from published RCTs in BMJ and JAMA. Main outcome measures Timing of trial registration in relation to completion of trial data collection and publication. Registered versus published primary and secondary outcomes, sample size. Results We identified 40 RCTs in BMJ and 36 in JAMA. All 36 JAMA trials and 39 (98%) BMJ trials were registered. All registered trials were registered prior to publication. Thirty-two (82%) BMJ trials recorded the date of data completion; of these, in two trials the date of trial registration postdated the registered date of data completion. There were discrepancies between primary outcomes declared in the trial registry information and in the published paper in 18 (47%) BMJ papers and seven (19%) JAMA papers. The original sample size stated in the trial registration was achieved in 24 (60%) BMJ papers and 21 (58%) JAMA papers. Conclusions Compulsory registration of RCTs is meaningless if the content of registry information is not complete or if discrepancies between registration and publication are not reported. This study demonstrates that discrepancies in primary and secondary outcomes and sample size between trial registration and publication remain commonplace, giving further strength to the World Health Organisation’s argument for mandatory completion of a minimum number of compulsory fields. PMID:25057391

  9. Effectiveness of the Baby Friendly Community Initiative in Italy: a non-randomised controlled study

    PubMed Central

    Cattaneo, Adriano; Bettinelli, Maria Enrica; Chapin, Elise; Macaluso, Anna; Córdova do Espírito Santo, Lílian; Murante, Anna Maria; Montico, Marcella

    2016-01-01

    Objective To assess the effectiveness of the Baby Friendly Community Initiative (BFCI) on exclusive breast feeding at 6 months. Design Controlled, non-randomised trial. Setting 18 Local Health Authorities in 9 regions of Italy. Participants 5094 mother/infant dyads in 3 cohorts were followed up to 12 months after birth in 3 rounds of data collection: at baseline, after implementation of the intervention in the early intervention group and after implementation in the late intervention group. 689 (14%) dyads did not complete the study. Intervention Implementation of the 7 steps of the BFCI. Main outcome measures The rate of exclusive breast feeding at 6 months was the primary outcome; breast feeding at discharge, 3 and 12 months was also measured. Results The crude rates of exclusive breast feeding at discharge, 3 and 6 months, and of any breast feeding at 6 and 12 months increased at each round of data collection after baseline in the early and late intervention groups. At the end of the project, 10% of infants were exclusively breast fed at 6 months and 38% were continuing to breast feed at 12 months. However, the comparison by adjusted rates and logistic regression failed to show statistically significant differences between groups and rounds of data collection in the intention-to-treat analysis, as well as when compliance with the intervention and training coverage was taken into account. Conclusions The study failed to demonstrate an effect of the BFCI on the rates of breast feeding. This may be due, among other factors, to the time needed to observe an effect on breast feeding following this complex intervention. PMID:27154476

  10. Aborted genital herpes simplex virus lesions: findings from a randomised controlled trial with valaciclovir

    PubMed Central

    Strand, A; Patel, R; Wulf, H; Coates, K

    2002-01-01

    Objectives: In prospective trials, episodic valaciclovir significantly increased the chance of preventing or aborting the development of painful vesicular genital herpes simplex virus (HSV) lesions compared with placebo. We explored the clinical outcome of aborted lesions and its association with early treatment in a study designed to compare 3 and 5 days' treatment with valaciclovir. Methods: In a randomised controlled trial, valaciclovir 500 mg twice daily for 3 or 5 days was initiated at the first symptoms of a genital herpes outbreak. The primary end point was length of episode with pain, HSV shedding, and aborted lesions secondary end points. The effect of time from symptom recognition to treatment initiation on aborted lesions was assessed in a post hoc analysis. Results: In 531 patients, no differences were observed between 3 and 5 days' treatment in episode duration (median 4.7 v 4.6 days), loss of pain/discomfort (2.8 v 3.0 days), or lesion healing (4.9 v 4.5 days). Vesicular lesions were aborted in 27% of patients treated for 3 days v 21% of patients receiving valaciclovir for 5 days. The odds of achieving an aborted episode were 1.93 (95% CI: 1.28 to 2.90) times higher for those initiating treatment with valaciclovir within 6 hours of first sign or symptom. Conclusions: There was no difference between 3 and 5 days' treatment in reducing episode duration or lesion abortion. Prompt treatment with valaciclovir can abort genital HSV reactivation episodes, preventing a vesicular outbreak. Maximum treatment benefit depends on prompt therapy after recognition of symptoms. PMID:12473805

  11. Pedometers to enhance physical activity in COPD: a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Horta, Paula; Espinoza, José; Aguilera, Miguel; Balmaceda, Nicolás; Castro, Ariel; Ruiz, Mauricio; Díaz, Orlando; Hopkinson, Nicholas S.

    2015-01-01

    Physical inactivity is a cardinal feature of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and is associated with increased morbidity and mortality. Pedometers, which have been used in healthy populations, might also increase physical activity in patients with COPD. COPD patients taking part in a 3-month individualised programme to promote an increase in their daily physical activity were randomised to either a standard programme of physical activity encouragement alone, or a pedometer-based programme. Assessments were performed by investigators blinded to treatment allocation. Change in average 1-week daily step count, 6-min walking distance (6MWD), modified Medical Research Council scale, St George’s respiratory questionnaire (SGRQ) and COPD assessment test (CAT) were compared between groups. 102 patients were recruited, of whom 97 completed the programme (pedometer group: n=50; control group: n=47); 60.8% were male with a mean±sd age of 68.7±8.5 years, and forced expiratory volume in 1 s (FEV1) 66.1±19.4% and FEV1/forced vital capacity 55.2±9.5%. Both groups had comparable characteristics at baseline. The pedometer group had significantly greater improvements in: physical activity 3080±3254 steps·day−1 versus 138.3±1950 steps·day−1 (p<0.001); SGRQ −8.8±12.2 versus −3.8±10.9 (p=0.01); CAT score −3.5±5.5 versus −0.6±6.6 (p=0.001); and 6MWD 12.4±34.6 versus −0.7±24.4 m (p=0.02) than patients receiving activity encouragement only. A simple physical activity enhancement programme using pedometers can effectively improve physical activity level and quality of life in COPD patients. PMID:25261324

  12. Comparison of methadone and buprenorphine for opiate detoxification (LEEDS trial): a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Wright, Nat MJ; Sheard, Laura; Adams, Clive E; Rushforth, Bruno J; Harrison, Wendy; Bound, Nicole; Hart, Roger; Tompkins, Charlotte NE

    2011-01-01

    Background Many opiate users require prescribed medication to help them achieve abstinence, commonly taking the form of a detoxification regime. In UK prisons, drug users are nearly universally treated for their opiate use by primary care clinicians, and once released access GP services where 40% of practices now treat drug users. There is a paucity of evidence evaluating methadone and buprenorphine (the two most commonly prescribed agents in the UK) for opiate detoxification. Aim To evaluate whether buprenorphine or methadone help to achieve drug abstinence at completion of a reducing regimen for heroin users presenting to UK prison health care for detoxification. Design Open-label, pragmatic, randomised controlled trial in three prison primary healthcare departments in the north of England. Method Prisoners (n = 306) using illicit opiates were recruited and given daily sublingual buprenorphine or oral methadone, in the context of routine care, over a standard reduced regimen of not more than 20 days. The primary outcome measure was abstinence from illicit opiates at 8 days post detoxification, as indicated by urine test (self-report/clinical notes where urine sample was not feasible). Secondary outcomes were also recorded. Results Abstinence was ascertained for 73.7% at 8 days post detoxification (urine sample = 52.6%, self report = 15.2%, clinical notes = 5.9%). There was no statistically significant difference in the odds of achieving abstinence between methadone and buprenorphine (odds ratio [OR] = 1.69; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.81 to 3.51; P = 0.163). Abstinence was associated solely with whether or not the participant was still in prison at that time (15.22 times the odds; 95% CI = 4.19 to 55.28). The strongest association for lasting abstinence was abstinence at an earlier time point. Conclusion There is equal clinical effectiveness between methadone and buprenorphine in achieving abstinence from opiates at 8 days post detoxification within prison

  13. Noninvasive ventilation for acute respiratory failure: a prospective randomised placebo-controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Thys, F; Roeseler, J; Reynaert, M; Liistro, G; Rodenstein, D O

    2002-09-01

    The aim of the present study was to clarify whether the known effects of noninvasive positive-pressure ventilation (NPPV) in patients with respiratory failure are real or due to placebo effects and whether early application of NPPV in the emergency department leads to rapid improvement of the patients condition and outcome. A prospective randomised placebo-controlled study was conducted in 20 patients with severe acute respiratory failure (ARF) secondary to an acute exacerbation of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or acute pulmonary oedema, not improving under conventional medical therapy and on the edge of intubation. Patients received either conventional medical therapy plus two-level NPPV (hi-level NPPV) or conventional medical therapy plus "placebo" NPPV. The main outcome measures involved the need for endotracheal intubation in the bi-level NPPV arm and in the placebo arm after crossing over to active NPPV. Morbidity, length of stay, mortality and the effect of the ventilatory mode on clinical, arterial-blood gas parameters, and the sternocleidomastoid muscles electromyogram (EMG) activity were also measured. The 10 patients in the active NPPV group rapidly improved and none needed intubation. Placebo NPPV resulted in no change in the clinical condition of patients that continued to worsen and the 10 patients were crossed over to active NPPV. Three patients were intubated. No differences in terms of morbidity, length of stay or mortality between the two groups were observed. Active NPPV (but not placebo NPPV) led to a rapid and significant improvement in the clinical parameters, pH and the carbon dioxide tension in arterial blood and to a decrease in respiratory frequency and sternocleidomastoid EMG activity. Early application of bi-level noninvasive positive-pressure ventilation in patients with severe acute respiratory failure, due to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and acute pulmonary oedema, leads to a rapid improvement in clinical status

  14. Cost effectiveness of day and inpatient psychiatric treatment: results of a randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed Central

    Creed, F.; Mbaya, P.; Lancashire, S.; Tomenson, B.; Williams, B.; Holme, S.

    1997-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To compare direct and indirect costs of day and inpatient treatment of acute psychiatric illness. DESIGN: Randomised controlled trial with outcome and costs assessed over 12 months after the date of admission. SETTING: Teaching hospital in an inner city area. SUBJECTS: 179 patients with acute psychiatric illness referred for admission who were suitable for random allocation to day hospital or inpatient treatment. 77 (43%) patients had schizophrenia. INTERVENTIONS: Routine inpatient or day hospital treatment. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Direct and indirect costs over 12 months, clinical symptoms, social functioning, and burden on relatives over the follow up period. RESULTS: Clinical and social outcomes were similar at 12 months, except that inpatients improved significantly faster than day patients and burden on relatives was significantly less in the day hospital group at one year. Median direct costs to the hospital were 1923 pounds (95% confidence interval 750 pounds to 3174 pounds) per patient less for day hospital treatment than inpatient treatment. Indirect costs were greater for day patients; when these were included, overall day hospital treatment was 2165 pounds cheaper than inpatient treatment (95% confidence interval of median difference 737 pounds to 3593 pounds). Including costs to informants when appropriate meant that day hospital treatment was 1994 pounds per patient cheaper (95% confidence interval 600 pounds to 3543 pounds). CONCLUSIONS: Day patient treatment is cheaper for the 30-40% of potential admissions that can be treated in this way. Carers of day hospital patients may bear additional costs. Carers of all patients with acute psychiatric illness are often themselves severely distressed at the time of admission, but day hospital treatment leads to less burden on carers in the long term. PMID:9161310

  15. Does paracetamol (acetaminophen) reduce the pain of osteoarthritis?: a meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, W; Jones, A; Doherty, M

    2004-01-01

    Design: Systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials (RCTs). Data sources: Medline, Embase, Scientific Citation Index, CINAHL, Cochrane Library, and conference abstracts in the past 2 years from the British Society for Rheumatology, the European League Against Rheumatism, the American College of Rheumatology, and the Osteoarthritis Research Society International. Subjects: 10 RCTs including 1712 patients with either symptomatic OA of the knee (6 trials) or hip/knee (3 trials) or multiple joints (1 trial). Main outcome measures: (a) effect size (ES) for pain, stiffness, and functional scores from baseline to end point; (b) rate ratio (RR) and number needed to treat for clinical response rate and patient preference for treatment. Results: Paracetamol was effective in relieving pain due to OA (ES = 0.21, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.02 to 0.41). Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) were better than paracetamol for pain relief (ES = 0.20, 95% CI 0.10 to 0.30). Clinical response rate was higher with NSAIDs than with paracetamol (RR = 1.24, 95% CI 1.08 to 1.41), and the number of patients who preferred NSAIDs was more than twice the number of those preferring paracetamol (RR = 2.46, 95% CI 1.51 to 4.12). NSAIDs were associated with more frequent gastrointestinal discomfort than paracetamol (RR = 1.35, 95% CI 1.05 to 1.75). Conclusion: Paracetamol is an effective agent for pain relief due to OA. Although safer, it is less effective than NSAIDs. For safety reasons paracetamol should be the first line treatment, with NSAIDs reserved for those who do not respond. PMID:15020311

  16. Outpatient versus inpatient uterine polyp treatment for abnormal uterine bleeding: randomised controlled non-inferiority study

    PubMed Central

    Cooper, Natalie A M; Middleton, Lee; Diwakar, Lavanya; Smith, Paul; Denny, Elaine; Roberts, Tracy; Stobert, Lynda; Jowett, Susan; Daniels, Jane

    2015-01-01

    Objective To compare the effectiveness and acceptability of outpatient polypectomy with inpatient polypectomy. Design Pragmatic multicentre randomised controlled non-inferiority study. Setting Outpatient hysteroscopy clinics in 31 UK National Health Service hospitals. Participants 507 women who attended as outpatients for diagnostic hysteroscopy because of abnormal uterine bleeding and were found to have uterine polyps. Interventions Participants were randomly assigned to either outpatient uterine polypectomy under local anaesthetic or inpatient uterine polypectomy under general anaesthesia. Data were collected on women’s self reported bleeding symptoms at baseline and at 6, 12, and 24 months. Data were also collected on pain and acceptability of the procedure at the time of polypectomy. Main outcome measures The primary outcome was successful treatment, determined by the women’s assessment of bleeding at six months, with a prespecified non-inferiority margin of 25%. Secondary outcomes included generic (EQ-5D) and disease specific (menorrhagia multi-attribute scale) quality of life, and feasibility and acceptability of the procedure. Results 73% (166/228) of women in the outpatient group and 80% (168/211) in the inpatient group reported successful treatment at six months (intention to treat relative risk 0.91, 95% confidence interval 0.82 to 1.02; per protocol relative risk 0.92, 0.82 to 1.02). Failure to remove polyps was higher (19% v 7%; relative risk 2.5, 1.5 to 4.1) and acceptability of the procedure was lower (83% v 92%; 0.90, 0.84 to 0.97) in the outpatient group Quality of life did not differ significantly between the groups. Four uterine perforations, one of which necessitated bowel resection, all occurred in the inpatient group. Conclusions Outpatient polypectomy was non-inferior to inpatient polypectomy. Failure to remove a uterine polyp was, however, more likely with outpatient polypectomy and acceptability of the procedure was slightly lower. Trial

  17. Comparison of propranolol and pregabalin for prophylaxis of childhood migraine: a randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Bakhshandeh Bali, MohammadKazem; Rahbarimanesh, Ali Akbar; Sadeghi, Manelie; Sedighi, Mostafa; Karimzadeh, Parvaneh; Ghofrani, Mohammad

    2015-01-01

    Migraine involves 5-10% of children and adolescents. Thirty percent of children with severe migraine attacks have school absence and reduced quality of life that need preventive therapy. The purpose of this randomised control trial study is to compare the effectiveness, safety and the tolerability of pregabalin toward Propranolol in migraine prophylaxis of children. From May 2011 to October 2012, 99 children 3-15 years referred to the neurology clinic of Mofid Children's Hospital with a diagnosis of migraine enrolled the study. Patients randomly divided into two groups (A&B). We treated children of group A with capsule of pregabalin as children of group B with tablet of propranolol for at least 8 weeks. In this study, 99 patients were examined that 91 children reached the last stage. The group A consistsed of 46 patients, 12(26.1%) girls, 34 (73.9%) boys and the group B consisted of 45 patients, 14(31.1%) girls, 31 (68.9%) boys. Basis of age, gender, headache onset, headache frequency, migraine type, triggering and relieving factors there was no significant difference among these groups (P>0.05). After 4 and 8 weeks of Pregabalin usage monthly headache frequency decreased to 2.2±4.5 and 1.76±6.2 respectively. Propranolol reduced monthly headache frequency up to 3.73±6.11 and 3.34±5.95 later 4 and 8 weeks respectively. There was a significant difference between these two groups according to headache frequency reduction (P=0.04). Pregabalin efficacy in reducing the frequency and duration of pediatric migraine headache is considerable in comparison with propranolol.

  18. Sliding-Mode Control Applied for Robust Control of a Highly Unstable Aircraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vetter, Travis Kenneth

    2002-01-01

    An investigation into the application of an observer based sliding mode controller for robust control of a highly unstable aircraft and methods of compensating for actuator dynamics is performed. After a brief overview of some reconfigurable controllers, sliding mode control (SMC) is selected because of its invariance properties and lack of need for parameter identification. SMC is reviewed and issues with parasitic dynamics, which cause system instability, are addressed. Utilizing sliding manifold boundary layers, the nonlinear control is converted to a linear control and sliding manifold design is performed in the frequency domain. An additional feedback form of model reference hedging is employed which is similar to a prefilter and has large benefits to system performance. The effects of inclusion of actuator dynamics into the designed plant is heavily investigated. Multiple Simulink models of the full longitudinal dynamics and wing deflection modes of the forward swept aero elastic vehicle (FSAV) are constructed. Additionally a linear state space models to analyze effects from various system parameters. The FSAV has a pole at +7 rad/sec and is non-minimum phase. The use of 'model actuators' in the feedback path, and varying there design, is heavily investigated for the resulting effects on plant robustness and tolerance to actuator failure. The use of redundant actuators is also explored and improved robustness is shown. All models are simulated with severe failure and excellent tracking, and task dependent handling qualities, and low pilot induced oscillation tendency is shown.

  19. 6-PACK programme to decrease fall injuries in acute hospitals: cluster randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Morello, Renata T; Wolfe, Rory; Brand, Caroline A; Haines, Terry P; Hill, Keith D; Brauer, Sandra G; Botti, Mari; Cumming, Robert G; Livingston, Patricia M; Sherrington, Catherine; Zavarsek, Silva; Lindley, Richard I; Kamar, Jeannette

    2016-01-01

    Objective To evaluate the effect of the 6-PACK programme on falls and fall injuries in acute wards. Design Cluster randomised controlled trial. Setting Six Australian hospitals. Participants All patients admitted to 24 acute wards during the trial period. Interventions Participating wards were randomly assigned to receive either the nurse led 6-PACK programme or usual care over 12 months. The 6-PACK programme included a fall risk tool and individualised use of one or more of six interventions: “falls alert” sign, supervision of patients in the bathroom, ensuring patients’ walking aids are within reach, a toileting regimen, use of a low-low bed, and use of a bed/chair alarm. Main outcome measures The co-primary outcomes were falls and fall injuries per 1000 occupied bed days. Results During the trial, 46 245 admissions to 16 medical and eight surgical wards occurred. As many people were admitted more than once, this represented 31 411 individual patients. Patients’ characteristics and length of stay were similar for intervention and control wards. Use of 6-PACK programme components was higher on intervention wards than on control wards (incidence rate ratio 3.05, 95% confidence interval 2.14 to 4.34; P<0.001). In all, 1831 falls and 613 fall injuries occurred, and the rates of falls (incidence rate ratio 1.04, 0.78 to 1.37; P=0.796) and fall injuries (0.96, 0.72 to 1.27; P=0.766) were similar in intervention and control wards. Conclusions Positive changes in falls prevention practice occurred following the introduction of the 6-PACK programme. However, no difference was seen in falls or fall injuries between groups. High quality evidence showing the effectiveness of falls prevention interventions in acute wards remains absent. Novel solutions to the problem of in-hospital falls are urgently needed. Trial registration Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry ACTRN12611000332921. PMID:26813674

  20. Improving doctors' prescribing behaviour through reflection on guidelines and prescription feedback: a randomised controlled study

    PubMed Central

    Lagerlov, P.; Loeb, M.; Andrew, M.; Hjortdahl, P.

    2000-01-01

    Background—It is difficult to put research findings into clinical practice by either guidelines or prescription feedback. Aim—To study the effect on the quality of prescribing by a combined intervention of providing individual feedback and deriving quality criteria using guideline recommendations in peer review groups. Methods—199 general practitioners in 32 groups were randomised to participate in peer review meetings related to either asthma or urinary tract infections. The dispensing by the participating doctors of antiasthmatic drugs and antibiotics during the year before the intervention period provided the basis for prescription feedback. The intervention feedback was designed to describe the treatment given in relation to recommendations in the national guidelines. In each group the doctors agreed on quality criteria for their own treatment of the corresponding diseases based on these recommendations. Comparison of their prescription feedback with their own quality criteria gave each doctor the proportion of acceptable and unacceptable treatments. Main outcome measure—Difference in the prescribing behaviour between the year before and the year after the intervention. Results—Before intervention the mean proportions of acceptably treated asthma patients in the asthma group and urinary tract infection (control) group were 28% and 27%, respectively. The mean proportion of acceptably treated patients in the asthma group was increased by 6% relative to the control group; this difference was statistically significant. The mean proportions of acceptable treatments of urinary tract infection before intervention in the urinary tract infection group and asthma (control) group were 12% for both groups which increased by 13% in the urinary tract infection group relative to the control group. Relative to the mean pre-intervention values this represented an improvement in treatment of 21% in the asthma group and 108% in the urinary tract infection group

  1. Robust Control for the Segway with Unknown Control Coefficient and Model Uncertainties.

    PubMed

    Kim, Byung Woo; Park, Bong Seok

    2016-06-29

    The Segway, which is a popular vehicle nowadays, is an uncertain nonlinear system and has an unknown time-varying control coefficient. Thus, we should consider the unknown time-varying control coefficient and model uncertainties to design the controller. Motivated by this observation, we propose a robust control for the Segway with unknown control coefficient and model uncertainties. To deal with the time-varying unknown control coefficient, we employ the Nussbaum gain technique. We introduce an auxiliary variable to solve the underactuated problem. Due to the prescribed performance control technique, the proposed controller does not require the adaptive technique, neural network, and fuzzy logic to compensate the uncertainties. Therefore, it can be simple. From the Lyapunov stability theory, we prove that all signals in the closed-loop system are bounded. Finally, we provide the simulation results to demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed control scheme.

  2. Robust Control for the Segway with Unknown Control Coefficient and Model Uncertainties.

    PubMed

    Kim, Byung Woo; Park, Bong Seok

    2016-01-01

    The Segway, which is a popular vehicle nowadays, is an uncertain nonlinear system and has an unknown time-varying control coefficient. Thus, we should consider the unknown time-varying control coefficient and model uncertainties to design the controller. Motivated by this observation, we propose a robust control for the Segway with unknown control coefficient and model uncertainties. To deal with the time-varying unknown control coefficient, we employ the Nussbaum gain technique. We introduce an auxiliary variable to solve the underactuated problem. Due to the prescribed performance control technique, the proposed controller does not require the adaptive technique, neural network, and fuzzy logic to compensate the uncertainties. Therefore, it can be simple. From the Lyapunov stability theory, we prove that all signals in the closed-loop system are bounded. Finally, we provide the simulation results to demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed control scheme. PMID:27367696

  3. Robust Control for the Segway with Unknown Control Coefficient and Model Uncertainties

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Byung Woo; Park, Bong Seok

    2016-01-01

    The Segway, which is a popular vehicle nowadays, is an uncertain nonlinear system and has an unknown time-varying control coefficient. Thus, we should consider the unknown time-varying control coefficient and model uncertainties to design the controller. Motivated by this observation, we propose a robust control for the Segway with unknown control coefficient and model uncertainties. To deal with the time-varying unknown control coefficient, we employ the Nussbaum gain technique. We introduce an auxiliary variable to solve the underactuated problem. Due to the prescribed performance control technique, the proposed controller does not require the adaptive technique, neural network, and fuzzy logic to compensate the uncertainties. Therefore, it can be simple. From the Lyapunov stability theory, we prove that all signals in the closed-loop system are bounded. Finally, we provide the simulation results to demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed control scheme. PMID:27367696

  4. Practical robustness measures in multivariable control system analysis. Ph.D. Thesis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lehtomaki, N. A.

    1981-01-01

    The robustness of the stability of multivariable linear time invariant feedback control systems with respect to model uncertainty is considered using frequency domain criteria. Available robustness tests are unified under a common framework based on the nature and structure of model errors. These results are derived using a multivariable version of Nyquist's stability theorem in which the minimum singular value of the return difference transfer matrix is shown to be the multivariable generalization of the distance to the critical point on a single input, single output Nyquist diagram. Using the return difference transfer matrix, a very general robustness theorem is presented from which all of the robustness tests dealing with specific model errors may be derived. The robustness tests that explicitly utilized model error structure are able to guarantee feedback system stability in the face of model errors of larger magnitude than those robustness tests that do not. The robustness of linear quadratic Gaussian control systems are analyzed.

  5. Can text messages increase safer sex behaviours in young people? Intervention development and pilot randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed Central

    Free, Caroline; McCarthy, Ona; French, Rebecca S; Wellings, Kaye; Michie, Susan; Roberts, Ian; Devries, Karen; Rathod, Sujit; Bailey, Julia; Syred, Jonathan; Edwards, Phil; Hart, Graham; Palmer, Melissa; Baraitser, Paula

    2016-01-01

    BACKGROUND Younger people bear the heaviest burden of sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Partner notification, condom use and STI testing can reduce infection but many young people lack the knowledge, skills and confidence needed to carry out these behaviours. Text messages can provide effective behavioural support. The acceptability and feasibility of a randomised controlled trial of safer sex support delivered by text message are not known. OBJECTIVES To assess the acceptability and feasibility of a randomised controlled trial of a safer sex intervention delivered by text message for young people aged 16-24 years. DESIGN (1) Intervention development; (2) follow-up procedure development; (3) a pilot, parallel-arm randomised controlled trial with allocation via remote automated randomisation (ratio of 1 : 1) (participants were unmasked, whereas researchers analysing samples and data were masked); and (4) qualitative interviews. SETTING Participants were recruited from sexual health services in the UK. PARTICIPANTS Young people aged 16-24 years diagnosed with chlamydia or reporting unprotected sex with more than one partner in the last year. INTERVENTIONS A theory- and evidence-based safer sex intervention designed, with young people's input, to reduce the incidence of STIs by increasing the correct treatment of STIs, partner notification, condom use and STI testing before unprotected sex with a new partner. The intervention was delivered via automated mobile phone messaging over 12 months. The comparator was a monthly text message checking contact details. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES (1) Development of the intervention based on theory, evidence and expert and user views; (2) follow-up procedures; (3) pilot trial primary outcomes: full recruitment within 3 months and follow-up rate for the proposed primary outcomes for the main trial; and (4) participants' views and experiences regarding the acceptability of the intervention. RESULTS In total, 200 participants

  6. The application of cost averaging techniques to robust control of the benchmark problem

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hagood, Nesbitt W.; Crawley, Edward F.

    1991-01-01

    A method is presented for the synthesis of robust controllers for linear time invariant systems with parameterized uncertainty structures. The method involves minimizing the average quadratic (H2) cost over the parameterized system. Bonded average cost implies stability over the set of systems. The average cost functional is minimized to derive robust fixed-order dynamic compensators. The robustness properties of these controllers are demonstrated on the sample problem.

  7. Increasing girls’ physical activity during an organised youth sport basketball program: a randomised controlled trial protocol

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Participation in organised youth sports (OYS) has been recommended as an opportunity to increase young peoples’ moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) levels. Participants, however, spend a considerable proportion of time during OYS inactive. The purpose of this study, therefore, was to investigate whether coaches who attended coach education sessions (where education on increasing MVPA and decreasing inactivity during training was delivered) can increase players’ MVPA during training sessions over a 5-day basketball program compared to coaches who did not receive coach education sessions. Methods/design A convenience sample of 80 female players and 8 coaches were recruited into the UWS School Holiday Basketball Program in Greater Western Sydney, Australia. A two-arm, parallel-group randomised controlled trial was employed to investigate whether coaches who attended 2 coach education sessions (compared with a no-treatment control) can increase their players’ MVPA during training sessions over a 5-day basketball program. Objectively measured physical activity, directly observed lesson context and leader behaviour, player motivation, players’ perceived autonomy support, and coaching information (regarding training session planning, estimations on player physical activity and lesson context during training, perceived ability to modify training sessions, perceived importance of physical activity during training, intention to increase physical activity/reduce inactivity, and likelihood of increasing physical activity/reducing inactivity) were assessed at baseline (day 1) and at follow-up (day 5). Linear mixed models will be used to analyse between arm differences in changes from baseline to follow-up on all outcomes. Discussion The current trial protocol describes, to our knowledge, the first trial conducted in an OYS context to investigate the efficacy of an intervention, relative to a control, in increasing MVPA. This study’s findings will

  8. Soya products and serum lipids: a meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials.

    PubMed

    Tokede, Oluwabunmi A; Onabanjo, Temilola A; Yansane, Alfa; Gaziano, J Michael; Djoussé, Luc

    2015-09-28

    Soya proteins and isoflavones have been reported to exert beneficial effects on the serum lipid profile. More recently, this claim is being challenged. The objective of this study was to comprehensively examine the effects of soya consumption on the lipid profile using published trials. A detailed literature search was conducted via MEDLINE (from 2004 through February 2014), CENTRAL (The Cochrane Controlled Clinical Trials Register) and ClinicalTrials.gov for randomised controlled trials assessing the effects of soya on the lipid profile. The primary effect measure was the difference in means of the final measurements between the intervention and control groups. In all, thirty-five studies (fifty comparisons) were included in our analyses. Treatment duration ranged from 4 weeks to 1 year. Intake of soya products resulted in a significant reduction in serum LDL-cholesterol concentration, -4.83 (95% CI -7.34, -2.31) mg/dl, TAG, -4.92 (95% CI -7.79, -2.04) mg/dl, and total cholesterol (TC) concentrations, -5.33 (95% CI -8.35, -2.30) mg/dl. There was also a significant increase in serum HDL-cholesterol concentration, 1.40 (95% CI 0.58, 2.23) mg/dl. The I² statistic ranged from 92 to 99%, indicating significant heterogeneity. LDL reductions were more marked in hypercholesterolaemic patients, -7.47 (95% CI -11.79, -3.16) mg/dl, than in healthy subjects, -2.96 (95% CI -5.28, -0.65) mg/dl. LDL reduction was stronger when whole soya products (soya milk, soyabeans and nuts) were used as the test regimen, -11.06 (95% CI -15.74, -6.37) mg/dl, as opposed to when 'processed' soya extracts, -3.17 (95% CI -5.75, -0.58) mg/dl, were used. These data are consistent with the beneficial effects of soya proteins on serum LDL, HDL, TAG and TC concentrations. The effect was stronger in hypercholesterolaemic subjects. Whole soya foods appeared to be more beneficial than soya supplementation, whereas isoflavone supplementation had no effects on the lipid profile.

  9. Robustness of a distributed neural network controller for locomotion in a hexapod robot

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chiel, Hillel J.; Beer, Randall D.; Quinn, Roger D.; Espenschied, Kenneth S.

    1992-01-01

    A distributed neural-network controller for locomotion, based on insect neurobiology, has been used to control a hexapod robot. How robust is this controller? Disabling any single sensor, effector, or central component did not prevent the robot from walking. Furthermore, statically stable gaits could be established using either sensor input or central connections. Thus, a complex interplay between central neural elements and sensor inputs is responsible for the robustness of the controller and its ability to generate a continuous range of gaits. These results suggest that biologically inspired neural-network controllers may be a robust method for robotic control.

  10. Randomised controlled trial of a new palliative care service: Compliance, recruitment and completeness of follow-up

    PubMed Central

    Higginson, Irene J; Hart, Sam; Burman, Rachel; Silber, Eli; Saleem, Tariq; Edmonds, Polly

    2008-01-01

    Background Palliative care has been proposed for progressive non-cancer conditions but there have been few evaluations of service developments. We analysed recruitment, compliance and follow-up data of a fast track (or wait list control) randomised controlled trial of a new palliative care service – a design not previously used to assess palliative care. Methods/Design An innovative palliative care service (comprising a consultant in palliative medicine, a clinical nurse specialist, an administrator and a psychosocial worker) was delivered to people severely affected by multiple sclerosis (MS), and their carers, in southeast London. Our design followed the MRC Framework for the Evaluation of Complex Interventions. In phase II we conducted randomised controlled trial, of immediate referral to the service (fast-track) versus a 12-week wait (standard best practice). Main outcome measures were: compliance (the extent the trial protocol was adhered to), recruitment (target 50 patients), attrition and missing data rates; trial outcomes were Palliative Care Outcome Scale and MS Impact Scale. Results 69 patients were referred, 52 entered the trial (26 randomised to each arm), 5 refused consent and 12 were excluded from the trial for other reasons, usually illness or urgent needs, achieving our target numbers. 25/26 fast track and 21/26 standard best practice patients completed the trial, resulting in 217/225 (96%) of possible interviews completed, 87% of which took place in the patient's home. Main reasons for failure to interview and/or attrition were death or illness. There were three deaths in the standard best practice group and one in the fast-track group during the trial. At baseline there were no differences between groups. Missing data for individual questionnaire items were small (median 0, mean 1–5 items out of 56+ items per interview), not associated with any patient or carer characteristics or with individual questionnaires, but were associated with

  11. Preventing academic difficulties in preterm children: a randomised controlled trial of an adaptive working memory training intervention – IMPRINT study

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Very preterm children exhibit difficulties in working memory, a key cognitive ability vital to learning information and the development of academic skills. Previous research suggests that an adaptive working memory training intervention (Cogmed) may improve working memory and other cognitive and behavioural domains, although further randomised controlled trials employing long-term outcomes are needed, and with populations at risk for working memory deficits, such as children born preterm. In a cohort of extremely preterm (<28 weeks’ gestation)/extremely low birthweight (<1000 g) 7-year-olds, we will assess the effectiveness of Cogmed in improving academic functioning 2 years’ post-intervention. Secondary objectives are to assess the effectiveness of Cogmed in improving working memory and attention 2 weeks’, 12 months’ and 24 months’ post-intervention, and to investigate training related neuroplasticity in working memory neural networks 2 weeks’ post-intervention. Methods/Design This double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomised controlled trial aims to recruit 126 extremely preterm/extremely low birthweight 7-year-old children. Children attending mainstream school without major intellectual, sensory or physical impairments will be eligible. Participating children will undergo an extensive baseline cognitive assessment before being randomised to either an adaptive or placebo (non-adaptive) version of Cogmed. Cogmed is a computerised working memory training program consisting of 25 sessions completed over a 5 to 7 week period. Each training session takes approximately 35 minutes and will be completed in the child’s home. Structural, diffusion and functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging, which is optional for participants, will be completed prior to and 2 weeks following the training period. Follow-up assessments focusing on academic skills (primary outcome), working memory and attention (secondary outcomes) will be conducted at 2 weeks’, 12

  12. Effect of Removing Direct Payment for Health Care on Utilisation and Health Outcomes in Ghanaian Children: A Randomised Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    Ansah, Evelyn Korkor; Narh-Bana, Solomon; Asiamah, Sabina; Dzordzordzi, Vivian; Biantey, Kingsley; Dickson, Kakra; Gyapong, John Owusu; Koram, Kwadwo Ansah; Greenwood, Brian M; Mills, Anne; Whitty, Christopher J. M

    2009-01-01

    Background Delays in accessing care for malaria and other diseases can lead to disease progression, and user fees are a known barrier to accessing health care. Governments are introducing free health care to improve health outcomes. Free health care affects treatment seeking, and it is therefore assumed to lead to improved health outcomes, but there is no direct trial evidence of the impact of removing out-of-pocket payments on health outcomes in developing countries. This trial was designed to test the impact of free health care on health outcomes directly. Methods and Findings 2,194 households containing 2,592 Ghanaian children under 5 y old were randomised into a prepayment scheme allowing free primary care including drugs, or to a control group whose families paid user fees for health care (normal practice); 165 children whose families had previously paid to enrol in the prepayment scheme formed an observational arm. The primary outcome was moderate anaemia (haemoglobin [Hb] < 8 g/dl); major secondary outcomes were health care utilisation, severe anaemia, and mortality. At baseline the randomised groups were similar. Introducing free primary health care altered the health care seeking behaviour of households; those randomised to the intervention arm used formal health care more and nonformal care less than the control group. Introducing free primary health care did not lead to any measurable difference in any health outcome. The primary outcome of moderate anaemia was detected in 37 (3.1%) children in the control and 36 children (3.2%) in the intervention arm (adjusted odds ratio 1.05, 95% confidence interval 0.66–1.67). There were four deaths in the control and five in the intervention group. Mean Hb concentration, severe anaemia, parasite prevalence, and anthropometric measurements were similar in each group. Families who previously self-enrolled in the prepayment scheme were significantly less poor, had better health measures, and used services more

  13. Robust fault-tolerant tracking control design for spacecraft under control input saturation.

    PubMed

    Bustan, Danyal; Pariz, Naser; Sani, Seyyed Kamal Hosseini

    2014-07-01

    In this paper, a continuous globally stable tracking control algorithm is proposed for a spacecraft in the presence of unknown actuator failure, control input saturation, uncertainty in inertial matrix and external disturbances. The design method is based on variable structure control and has the following properties: (1) fast and accurate response in the presence of bounded disturbances; (2) robust to the partial loss of actuator effectiveness; (3) explicit consideration of control input saturation; and (4) robust to uncertainty in inertial matrix. In contrast to traditional fault-tolerant control methods, the proposed controller does not require knowledge of the actuator faults and is implemented without explicit fault detection and isolation processes. In the proposed controller a single parameter is adjusted dynamically in such a way that it is possible to prove that both attitude and angular velocity errors will tend to zero asymptotically. The stability proof is based on a Lyapunov analysis and the properties of the singularity free quaternion representation of spacecraft dynamics. Results of numerical simulations state that the proposed controller is successful in achieving high attitude performance in the presence of external disturbances, actuator failures, and control input saturation. PMID:24751476

  14. A randomised controlled trial of the use of aromatherapy and hand massage to reduce disruptive behaviour in people with dementia

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Aromatherapy and hand massage therapies have been reported to have some benefit for people with dementia who display behavioural symptoms; however there are a number of limitations of reported studies. The aim is to investigate the effect of aromatherapy (3% lavender oil spray) with and without hand massage on disruptive behaviour in people with dementia living in long-term care. Methods In a single blinded randomised controlled trial 67 people with a diagnosis of dementia and a history of disruptive behaviour, from three long-term care facilities were recruited and randomised using a random number table into three groups: (1) Combination (aromatherapy and hand massage) (n = 22), (2) Aromatherapy (n = 23), (3) Placebo control (water spray) (n = 22). The intervention was given twice daily for six weeks. Data on residents’ behaviour (CMAI) and cognition (MMSE) were collected before, during and after the intervention. Results Despite a downward trend in behaviours displayed not one of the interventions significantly reduced disruptive behaviour. Conclusions Further large-scale placebo controlled studies are required where antipsychotic medication is controlled and a comparison of the methods of application of aromatherapy are investigated. Trial registration ACTRN12612000917831 PMID:23837414

  15. Systematic review of randomised controlled trials of multiple risk factor interventions for preventing coronary heart disease.

    PubMed Central

    Ebrahim, S.; Smith, G. D.

    1997-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To assess the effectiveness of multiple risk factor intervention in reducing cardiovascular risk factors, total mortality, and mortality from coronary heart disease among adults. DESIGN: Systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials in workforces and in primary care in which subjects were randomly allocated to more than one of six interventions (stopping smoking, exercise, dietary advice, weight control, antihypertensive drugs, and cholesterol lowering drugs) and followed up for at least six months. SUBJECTS: Adults aged 17-73 years, 903000 person years of observation were included in nine trials with clinical event outcomes and 303000 person years in five trials with risk factor outcomes alone. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Changes in systolic and diastolic blood pressure, smoking rates, blood cholesterol concentrations, total mortality, and mortality from coronary heart disease. RESULTS: Net decreases in systolic and diastolic blood pressure, smoking prevalence, and blood cholesterol were 4.2 mm Hg (SE 0.19 mm Hg), 2.7 mm Hg (0.09 mm Hg), 4.2% (0.3%), and 0.14 mmol/l (0.01 mmol/l) respectively. In the nine trials with clinical event end points the pooled odds ratios for total and coronary heart disease mortality were 0.97 (95% confidence interval 0.92 to 1.02) and 0.96 (0.88 to 1.04) respectively. Statistical heterogeneity between the studies with respect to changes in mortality and risk factors was due to trials focusing on hypertensive participants and those using considerable amounts of drug treatment, with only these trials showing significant reductions in mortality. CONCLUSIONS: The pooled effects of multiple risk factor intervention on mortality were insignificant and a small, but potentially important, benefit of treatment (about a 10% reduction in mortality) may have been missed. Changes in risk factors were modest, were related to the amount of pharmacological treatment used, and in some cases may have been overestimated

  16. Effects of tea intake on blood pressure: a meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials.

    PubMed

    Liu, Gang; Mi, Xue-Nan; Zheng, Xin-Xin; Xu, Yan-Lu; Lu, Jie; Huang, Xiao-Hong

    2014-10-14

    The effect of tea intake on blood pressure (BP) is controversial. We performed a meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials to determine the changes in systolic and diastolic BP due to the intake of black and green tea. A systematic search was conducted in MEDLINE, EMBASE and the Cochrane Controlled Trials Register up to May 2014. The weighted mean difference was calculated for net changes in systolic and diastolic BP using fixed-effects or random-effects models. Previously defined subgroup analyses were performed to explore the influence of study characteristics. A total of twenty-five eligible studies with 1476 subjects were selected. The acute intake of tea had no effects on systolic and diastolic BP. However, after long-term tea intake, the pooled mean systolic and diastolic BP were lower by - 1·8 (95 % CI - 2·4, - 1·1) and - 1·4 (95 % CI - 2·2, - 0·6) mmHg, respectively. When stratified by type of tea, green tea significantly reduced systolic BP by 2·1 (95 % CI - 2·9, - 1·2) mmHg and decreased diastolic BP by 1·7 (95 % CI - 2·9, - 0·5) mmHg, and black tea showed a reduction in systolic BP of 1·4 (95 % CI - 2·4, - 0·4) mmHg and a decrease in diastolic BP of 1·1 (95 % CI - 1·9, - 0·2) mmHg. The subgroup analyses showed that the BP-lowering effect was apparent in subjects who consumed tea more than 12 weeks (systolic BP - 2·6 (95 % CI - 3·5, - 1·7) mmHg and diastolic BP - 2·2 (95 % CI - 3·0, - 1·3) mmHg, both P< 0·001). The present findings suggest that long-term ( ≥ 12 weeks) ingestion of tea could result in a significant reduction in systolic and diastolic BP.

  17. Primary prevention of gestational diabetes for women who are overweight and obese: a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Gestational Diabetes Mellitus (GDM) has well recognised adverse health implications for the mother and her newborn that are both short and long term. Obesity is a significant risk factor for developing GDM and the prevalence of obesity is increasing globally. It is a matter of public health importance that clinicians have evidence based strategies to inform practice and currently there is insufficient evidence regarding the impact of dietary and lifestyle interventions on improving maternal and newborn outcomes. The primary aim of this study is to measure the impact of a telephone based intervention that promotes positive lifestyle modifications on the incidence of GDM. Secondary aims include: the impact on gestational weight gain; large for gestational age babies; differences in blood glucose levels taken at the Oral Glucose Tolerance Test (OGTT) and selected factors relating to self-efficacy and psychological wellbeing. Method/design A randomised controlled trial (RCT) will be conducted involving pregnant women who are overweight (BMI >25 to 29.9 k/gm2) or obese (BMI >30 kgm/2), less than 14 weeks gestation and recruited from the Barwon South West region of Victoria, Australia. From recruitment until birth, women in the intervention group will receive a program informed by the Theory of Self-efficacy and employing Motivational Interviewing. Brief ( less than 5 minute) phone contact will alternate with a text message/email and will involve goal setting, behaviour change reinforcement with weekly weighing and charting, and the provision of health information. Those in the control group will receive usual care. Data for primary and secondary outcomes will be collected from medical record review and a questionnaire at 36 weeks gestation. Discussion Evidence based strategies that reduce the incidence of GDM are a priority for contemporary maternity care. Changing health behaviours is a complex undertaking and trialling a composite intervention that

  18. Randomised, controlled walking trials in postmenopausal women: the minimum dose to improve aerobic fitness?

    PubMed Central

    Asikainen, T; Miilunpalo, S; Oja, P; Rinne, M; Pasanen, M; Uusi-Rasi, K; Vuori, I

    2002-01-01

    Background: The American College of Sports Medicine recommends 20–60 minutes of aerobic exercise three to five days a week at an intensity of 40/50–85% of maximal aerobic power (VO2MAX) reserve, expending a total of 700–2000 kcal (2.93–8.36 MJ) a week to improve aerobic power and body composition. Objective: To ascertain the minimum effective dose of exercise. Methods: Voluntary, healthy, non-obese, sedentary, postmenopausal women (n = 121), 48–63 years of age, were randomised to four low dose walking groups or a control group; 116 subjects completed the study. The exercise groups walked five days a week for 24 weeks with the following intensity (% of VO2MAX) and energy expenditure (kcal/week): group W1, 55%/1500 kcal; group W2, 45%/1500 kcal; group W3, 55%/1000 kcal; group W4, 45%/1000 kcal. VO2MAX was measured in a direct maximal treadmill test. Submaximal aerobic fitness was estimated as heart rates at submaximal work levels corresponding to 65% and 75% of the baseline VO2MAX. The body mass index (BMI) was calculated and percentage of body fat (F%) estimated from skinfolds. Results: The net change (the differences between changes in each exercise group and the control group) in VO2MAX was 2.9 ml/min/kg (95% confidence interval (CI) 1.5 to 4.2) in group W1, 2.6 ml/min/kg (95% CI 1.3 to 4.0) in group W2, 2.4 ml/min/kg (95% CI 0.9 to 3.8) in group W3, and 2.2 ml/min/kg (95% CI 0.8 to 3.5) in group W4. The heart rates in standard submaximal work decreased 4 to 8 beats/min in all the groups. There was no change in BMI, but the F% decreased by about 1% unit in all the groups. Conclusions: Walking (for 24 weeks) at moderate intensity 45% to 55% of VO2MAX, with a total weekly energy expenditure of 1000–1500 kcal, improves VO2MAX and body composition of previously sedentary, non-obese, postmenopausal women. This dose of exercise apparently approaches the minimum effective dose. PMID:12055113

  19. Patient initiated outpatient follow up in rheumatoid arthritis: six year randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Hewlett, Sarah; Kirwan, John; Pollock, Jon; Mitchell, Kathryn; Hehir, Maggie; Blair, Peter S; Memel, David; Perry, Mark G

    2005-01-01

    Objectives To determine whether direct access to hospital review initiated by patients with rheumatoid arthritis would result in improved clinical and psychological outcome, reduced overall use of healthcare resources, and greater satisfaction with care than seen in patients receiving regular review initiated by a rheumatologist. Design Two year randomised controlled trial extended to six years. Setting Rheumatology outpatient department in teaching hospital. Participants 209 consecutive patients with rheumatoid arthritis for over two years; 68 (65%) in the direct access group and 52 (50%) in the control group completed the study (P = 0.04). Main outcome measures Clinical outcome: pain, disease activity, early morning stiffness, inflammatory indices, disability, grip strength, range of movement in joints, and bone erosion. Psychological status: anxiety, depression, helplessness, self efficacy, satisfaction, and confidence in the system. Number of visits to hospital physician and general practitioner for arthritis. Results Participants were well matched at baseline. After six years there was only one significant difference between the two groups for the 14 clinical outcomes measured (deterioration in range of movement in elbow was less in direct access patients). There were no significant differences between groups for median change in psychological status. Satisfaction and confidence in the system were significantly higher in the direct access group at two, four, and six years: confidence 9.8 v 8.4, 9.4 v 8.0, 8.7 v 6.9; satisfaction 9.3 v 8.3, 9.3 v 7.7, 8.9 v 7.1 (all P < 0.02). Patients in the direct access group had 38% fewer hospital appointments (median 8 v 13, P < 0.0001). Conclusions Over six years, patients with rheumatoid arthritis who initiated their reviews through direct access were clinically and psychologically at least as well as patients having traditional reviews initiated by a physician. They requested fewer appointments, found direct access more

  20. Boosting uptake of influenza immunisation: a randomised controlled trial of telephone appointing in general practice.

    PubMed Central

    Hull, Sally; Hagdrup, Nicola; Hart, Ben; Griffiths, Chris; Hennessy, Enid

    2002-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Immunisation against influenza is an effective intervention that reduces serologically confirmed cases by between 60% and 70%. Almost all influenza immunisation in the UK is done within general practice. Current evidence on the effectiveness of patient reminders for all types of immunisation programmes is largely based on North American studies. AIM: To determine whether telephone appointments offered bygeneral practice receptionists increase the uptake of irfluenza immunisation among the registered population aged over 65 years in east London practices. DESIGN OF STUDY: Randomised controlled trial. SETTING: Three research general practices within the East London and Essex network of researchers (ELENoR). METHOD: Participants were 1,820 low-risk patients aged 65 to 74 years who had not previously been in a recall system for influenza immunisation at their general practice. The intervention, during October 2000, was a telephone call from the practice receptionist to intervention group households, offering an appointment for influenza immunisation at a nurse-run. clinic Main outcome measures were the numbers of individuals in each group receiving immunisation, and practice costs of a telephone-appointing programme. RESULTS: intention to treat analysis showed an immunisation rate in the control group of 44%, compared with 50% in the intervention group (odds ratio = 1.29, 95% confidence interval = 1.03 to 1.63). Of the patients making a telephone appointment, 88% recieved immunisation, while 22% of those not wanting an appointment went on to be immunised. In the controlgroup, income generated was 11.35 pounds per immunisation, for each additional immunisation in the intervention group the income was 5.20 pounds. The 'number needed to telephone' was 17. CONCLUSION: Uptake of influenza immunisation among the low-risk older population in inner-city areas can be boosted by around 6% using a simple intervention by receptionists. Immunisation rates in this low

  1. Larval therapy for leg ulcers (VenUS II): randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Worthy, Gill; Bland, J Martin; Cullum, Nicky; Dowson, Christopher; Iglesias, Cynthia; Mitchell, Joanne L; Nelson, E Andrea; Soares, Marta O; Torgerson, David J

    2009-01-01

    Objective To compare the clinical effectiveness of larval therapy with a standard debridement technique (hydrogel) for sloughy or necrotic leg ulcers. Design Pragmatic, three armed randomised controlled trial. Setting Community nurse led services, hospital wards, and hospital outpatient leg ulcer clinics in urban and rural settings, United Kingdom. Participants 267 patients with at least one venous or mixed venous and arterial ulcer with at least 25% coverage of slough or necrotic tissue, and an ankle brachial pressure index of 0.6 or more. Interventions Loose larvae, bagged larvae, and hydrogel. Main outcome measures The primary outcome was time to healing of the largest eligible ulcer. Secondary outcomes were time to debridement, health related quality of life (SF-12), bacterial load, presence of meticillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus, adverse events, and ulcer related pain (visual analogue scale, from 0 mm for no pain to 150 mm for worst pain imaginable). Results Time to healing was not significantly different between the loose or bagged larvae group and the hydrogel group (hazard ratio for healing using larvae v hydrogel 1.13, 95% confidence interval 0.76 to 1.68; P=0.54). Larval therapy significantly reduced the time to debridement (2.31, 1.65 to 3.2; P<0.001). Health related quality of life and change in bacterial load over time were not significantly different between the groups. 6.7% of participants had MRSA at baseline. No difference was found between larval therapy and hydrogel in their ability to eradicate MRSA by the end of the debridement phase (75% (9/12) v 50% (3/6); P=0.34), although this comparison was underpowered. Mean ulcer related pain scores were higher in either larvae group compared with hydrogel (mean difference in pain score: loose larvae v hydrogel 46.74 (95% confidence interval 32.44 to 61.04), P<0.001; bagged larvae v hydrogel 38.58 (23.46 to 53.70), P<0.001). Conclusions Larval therapy did not improve the rate of healing of sloughy

  2. The effectiveness of video interaction guidance in parents of premature infants: A multicenter randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Studies have consistently found a high incidence of neonatal medical problems, premature births and low birth weights in abused and neglected children. One of the explanations proposed for the relation between neonatal problems and adverse parenting is a possible delay or disturbance in the bonding process between the parent and infant. This hypothesis suggests that due to neonatal problems, the development of an affectionate bond between the parent and the infant is impeded. The disruption of an optimal parent-infant bond -on its turn- may predispose to distorted parent-infant interactions and thus facilitate abusive or neglectful behaviours. Video Interaction Guidance (VIG) is expected to promote the bond between parents and newborns and is expected to diminish non-optimal parenting behaviour. Methods/design This study is a multi-center randomised controlled trial to evaluate the effectiveness of Video Interaction Guidance in parents of premature infants. In this study 210 newborn infants with their parents will be included: n = 70 healthy term infants (>37 weeks GA), n = 70 moderate term infants (32–37 weeks GA) which are recruited from maternity wards of 6 general hospitals and n = 70 extremely preterm infants or very low birth weight infants (<32 weeks GA) recruited by the NICU of 2 specialized hospitals. The participating families will be divided into 3 groups: a reference group (i.e. full term infants and their parents, receiving care as usual), a control group (i.e. premature infants and their parents, receiving care as usual) and an intervention group (i.e. premature infants and their parents, receiving VIG). The data will be collected during the first six months after birth using observations of parent-infant interactions, questionnaires and semi-structured interviews. Primary outcomes are the quality of parental bonding and parent-infant interactive behaviour. Parental secondary outcomes are (posttraumatic) stress symptoms

  3. Randomised controlled trial of the effect of long-term selenium supplementation on plasma cholesterol in an elderly Danish population.

    PubMed

    Cold, Frederik; Winther, Kristian H; Pastor-Barriuso, Roberto; Rayman, Margaret P; Guallar, Eliseo; Nybo, Mads; Griffin, Bruce A; Stranges, Saverio; Cold, Søren

    2015-12-14

    Although cross-sectional studies have shown a positive association between Se and cholesterol concentrations, a recent randomised controlled trial in 501 elderly UK individuals of relatively low-Se status found that Se supplementation for 6 months lowered total plasma cholesterol. The Danish PRECISE (PREvention of Cancer by Intervention with Selenium) pilot study (ClinicalTrials.gov ID: NCT01819649) was a 5-year randomised, double-blinded, placebo-controlled trial with four groups (allocation ratio 1:1:1:1). Men and women aged 60-74 years (n 491) were randomised to 100 (n 124), 200 (n 122) or 300 (n 119) μg Se-enriched yeast or matching placebo-yeast tablets (n 126) daily for 5 years. A total of 468 participants continued the study for 6 months and 361 participants, equally distributed across treatment groups, continued for 5 years. Plasma samples were analysed for total and HDL-cholesterol and for total Se concentrations at baseline, 6 months and 5 years. The effect of different doses of Se supplementation on plasma lipid and Se concentrations was estimated by using linear mixed models. Plasma Se concentration increased significantly and dose-dependently in the intervention groups after 6 months and 5 years. Total cholesterol decreased significantly both in the intervention groups and in the placebo group after 6 months and 5 years, with small and nonsignificant differences in changes in plasma concentration of total cholesterol, HDL-cholesterol, non-HDL-cholesterol and total:HDL-cholesterol ratio between intervention and placebo groups. The effect of long-term supplementation with Se on plasma cholesterol concentrations or its sub-fractions did not differ significantly from placebo in this elderly population. PMID:26420334

  4. Role of probiotics VSL#3 in prevention of suspected sepsis in low birthweight infants in India: a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Sinha, Anju; Gupta, Subodh S; Chellani, Harish; Maliye, Chetna; Kumari, Vidya; Arya, Sugandha; Garg, BS; Gaur, Sunita Dixit; Gaind, Rajni; Deotale, Vijayshri; Taywade, Manish; Prasad, MS; Thavraj, Vasantha; Mukherjee, Ajit; Roy, Malabika

    2015-01-01

    Objectives To assess the effect of the probiotic VSL#3 in prevention of neonatal sepsis in low birthweight (LBW) infants. Design Randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Setting Community setting in rural India. Participants LBW infants aged 3–7 days. Interventions Infants were randomised to receive probiotic (VSL#3, 10 billion colony-forming units (cfu)) or placebo for 30 days, and were followed up for 2 months. Main outcome measure Possible serious bacterial infection (PSBI) as per the Integrated Management of Neonatal Childhood Illnesses algorithm, as diagnosed by fieldworkers/physicians. Results 668 infants were randomised to VSL#3 and 672 to placebo. By intention-to-treat analysis, the risk of PSBI among infants in the overall population of LBW infants was not statistically significant (RR 0.79 (95% CI 0.56 to 1.03)). Probiotics reduced median days of hospitalisation (6 days vs 3 days in probiotics) (p=0.018) but not the risk of hospitalisation (RR 0.66 (95% CI 0.42 to 1.04). The onset of PSBI in 10% of infants occurred on the 40th day in the probiotics arm versus the 25th day in the control arm (p=0.063). Conclusions Daily supplementation of LBW infants with probiotics VSL#3 (10 billion cfu) for 30 days led to a non-significant 21% reduction in risk of neonatal sepsis. A larger study with sufficient power and a more specific primary end point is warranted to confirm the preventive effect of VSL#3 on neonatal sepsis in LBW infants. Trial registration number The study is registered at the Clinical Trial Registry of India (CTRI/2008/091/000049). PMID:26163028

  5. Study protocol for the evaluation of an Infant Simulator based program delivered in schools: a pragmatic cluster randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background This paper presents the study protocol for a pragmatic randomised controlled trial to evaluate the impact of a school based program developed to prevent teenage pregnancy. The program includes students taking care of an Infant Simulator; despite growing popularity and an increasing global presence of such programs, there is no published evidence of their long-term impact. The aim of this trial is to evaluate the Virtual Infant Parenting (VIP) program by investigating pre-conceptual health and risk behaviours, teen pregnancy and the resultant birth outcomes, early child health and maternal health. Methods and Design Fifty-seven schools (86% of 66 eligible secondary schools) in Perth, Australia were recruited to the clustered (by school) randomised trial, with even randomisation to the intervention and control arms. Between 2003 and 2006, the VIP program was administered to 1,267 participants in the intervention schools, while 1,567 participants in the non-intervention schools received standard curriculum. Participants were all female and aged between 13-15 years upon recruitment. Pre and post-intervention questionnaires measured short-term impact and participants are now being followed through their teenage years via data linkage to hospital medical records, abortion clinics and education records. Participants who have a live birth are interviewed by face-to-face interview. Kaplan-Meier survival analysis and proportional hazards regression will test for differences in pregnancy, birth and abortion rates during the teenage years between the study arms. Discussion This protocol paper provides a detailed overview of the trial design as well as initial results in the form of participant flow. The authors describe the intervention and its delivery within the natural school setting and discuss the practical issues in the conduct of the trial, including recruitment. The trial is pragmatic and will directly inform those who provide Infant Simulator based programs

  6. Randomised controlled trial of the effect of long-term selenium supplementation on plasma cholesterol in an elderly Danish population.

    PubMed

    Cold, Frederik; Winther, Kristian H; Pastor-Barriuso, Roberto; Rayman, Margaret P; Guallar, Eliseo; Nybo, Mads; Griffin, Bruce A; Stranges, Saverio; Cold, Søren

    2015-12-14

    Although cross-sectional studies have shown a positive association between Se and cholesterol concentrations, a recent randomised controlled trial in 501 elderly UK individuals of relatively low-Se status found that Se supplementation for 6 months lowered total plasma cholesterol. The Danish PRECISE (PREvention of Cancer by Intervention with Selenium) pilot study (ClinicalTrials.gov ID: NCT01819649) was a 5-year randomised, double-blinded, placebo-controlled trial with four groups (allocation ratio 1:1:1:1). Men and women aged 60-74 years (n 491) were randomised to 100 (n 124), 200 (n 122) or 300 (n 119) μg Se-enriched yeast or matching placebo-yeast tablets (n 126) daily for 5 years. A total of 468 participants continued the study for 6 months and 361 participants, equally distributed across treatment groups, continued for 5 years. Plasma samples were analysed for total and HDL-cholesterol and for total Se concentrations at baseline, 6 months and 5 years. The effect of different doses of Se supplementation on plasma lipid and Se concentrations was estimated by using linear mixed models. Plasma Se concentration increased significantly and dose-dependently in the intervention groups after 6 months and 5 years. Total cholesterol decreased significantly both in the intervention groups and in the placebo group after 6 months and 5 years, with small and nonsignificant differences in changes in plasma concentration of total cholesterol, HDL-cholesterol, non-HDL-cholesterol and total:HDL-cholesterol ratio between intervention and placebo groups. The effect of long-term supplementation with Se on plasma cholesterol concentrations or its sub-fractions did not differ significantly from placebo in this elderly population.

  7. Robust Control for Microgravity Vibration Isolation using Fixed Order, Mixed H2/Mu Design

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Whorton, Mark

    2003-01-01

    Many space-science experiments need an active isolation system to provide a sufficiently quiescent microgravity environment. Modern control methods provide the potential for both high-performance and robust stability in the presence of parametric uncertainties that are characteristic of microgravity vibration isolation systems. While H2 and H(infinity) methods are well established, neither provides the levels of attenuation performance and robust stability in a compensator with low order. Mixed H2/H(infinity), controllers provide a means for maximizing robust stability for a given level of mean-square nominal performance while directly optimizing for controller order constraints. This paper demonstrates the benefit of mixed norm design from the perspective of robustness to parametric uncertainties and controller order for microgravity vibration isolation. A nominal performance metric analogous to the mu measure, for robust stability assessment is also introduced in order to define an acceptable trade space from which different control methodologies can be compared.

  8. The Cochrane Lecture. The best and the enemy of the good: randomised controlled trials, uncertainty, and assessing the role of patient choice in medical decision making.

    PubMed

    McPherson, K

    1994-02-01

    This lecture aimed to create a bridge to span the conceptual and ideological gap between randomised controlled trials and systematic observational comparisons and to reduce unwanted and unproductive polarisation. The argument, simply put, is that since randomisation alone eliminates the selection effect of therapeutic decision making, anything short of randomisation to attribute cause to consequent outcome is a waste of time. If observational comparison does have any significant part in evaluating medical outcomes, there is a grave danger of "the best", to paraphrase Voltaire, becoming "the enemy of the good". The first section aims to emphasise the advantages of randomised controlled trials. Then the nature of an essential precondition--medical uncertainty--is discussed in terms of its extent and effect. Next, the role of patient choice in medical decision making is considered, both when outcomes can safely be attributed to treatment choice and when they cannot. There may be many important situations in which choice itself affects outcome and this could mean that random comparisons give biased estimates of true therapeutic effects. In the penultimate section, the implications of this possibility both for randomised controlled trials and for outcome research is pursued and lastly there are some simple recommendations for reliable outcome research. PMID:8138772

  9. Robust fixed order dynamic compensation for large space structure control

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Calise, Anthony J.; Byrns, Edward V., Jr.

    1989-01-01

    A simple formulation for designing fixed order dynamic compensators which are robust to both uncertainty at the plant input and structured uncertainty in the plant dynamics is presented. The emphasis is on designing low order compensators for systems of high order. The formulation is done in an output feedback setting which exploits an observer canonical form to represent the compensator dynamics. The formulation also precludes the use of direct feedback of the plant output. The main contribution lies in defining a method for penalizing the states of the plant and of the compensator, and for choosing the distribution on initial conditions so that the loop transfer matrix approximates that of a full state design. To improve robustness to parameter uncertainty, the formulation avoids the introduction of sensitivity states, which has led to complex formulations in earlier studies where only structured uncertainty has been considered.

  10. Performance and robustness of hybrid model predictive control for controllable dampers in building models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, Erik A.; Elhaddad, Wael M.; Wojtkiewicz, Steven F.

    2016-04-01

    A variety of strategies have been developed over the past few decades to determine controllable damping device forces to mitigate the response of structures and mechanical systems to natural hazards and other excitations. These "smart" damping devices produce forces through passive means but have properties that can be controlled in real time, based on sensor measurements of response across the structure, to dramatically reduce structural motion by exploiting more than the local "information" that is available to purely passive devices. A common strategy is to design optimal damping forces using active control approaches and then try to reproduce those forces with the smart damper. However, these design forces, for some structures and performance objectives, may achieve high performance by selectively adding energy, which cannot be replicated by a controllable damping device, causing the smart damper performance to fall far short of what an active system would provide. The authors have recently demonstrated that a model predictive control strategy using hybrid system models, which utilize both continuous and binary states (the latter to capture the switching behavior between dissipative and non-dissipative forces), can provide reductions in structural response on the order of 50% relative to the conventional clipped-optimal design strategy. This paper explores the robustness of this newly proposed control strategy through evaluating controllable damper performance when the structure model differs from the nominal one used to design the damping strategy. Results from the application to a two-degree-of-freedom structure model confirms the robustness of the proposed strategy.

  11. Randomised sham-controlled trial of transcutaneous electrical stimulation in obstructive sleep apnoea

    PubMed Central

    Pengo, Martino F; Xiao, Sichang; Ratneswaran, Culadeeban; Reed, Kate; Shah, Nimish; Chen, Tao; Douiri, Abdel; Hart, Nicholas; Luo, Yuanming; Rossi, Gian Paolo; Williams, Adrian; Polkey, Michael I; Moxham, John; Steier, Joerg

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) is characterised by a loss of neuromuscular tone of the upper airway dilator muscles while asleep. This study investigated the effectiveness of transcutaneous electrical stimulation in patients with OSA. Patients and methods This was a randomised, sham-controlled crossover trial using transcutaneous electrical stimulation of the upper airway dilator muscles in patients with confirmed OSA. Patients were randomly assigned to one night of sham stimulation and one night of active treatment. The primary outcome was the 4% oxygen desaturation index, responders were defined as patients with a reduction >25% in the oxygen desaturation index when compared with sham stimulation and/or with an index <5/hour in the active treatment night. Results In 36 patients (age mean 50.8 (SD 11.2) years, male/female 30/6, body mass index median 29.6 (IQR 26.9–34.9) kg/m2, Epworth Sleepiness Scale 10.5 (4.6) points, oxygen desaturation index median 25.7 (16.0–49.1)/hour, apnoea-hypopnoea index median 28.1 (19.0–57.0)/hour) the primary outcome measure improved when comparing sham stimulation (median 26.9 (17.5–39.5)/hour) with active treatment (median 19.5 (11.6–40.0)/hour; p=0.026), a modest reduction of the mean by 4.1 (95% CI −0.6 to 8.9)/hour. Secondary outcome parameters of patients' perception indicated that stimulation was well tolerated. Responders (47.2%) were predominantly from the mild-to-moderate OSA category. In this subgroup, the oxygen desaturation index was reduced by 10.0 (95% CI 3.9 to 16.0)/hour (p<0.001) and the apnoea-hypopnoea index was reduced by 9.1 (95% CI 2.0 to 16.2)/hour (p=0.004). Conclusion Transcutaneous electrical stimulation of the pharyngeal dilators during a single night in patients with OSA improves upper airway obstruction and is well tolerated. Trial registration number NCT01661712. PMID:27435610

  12. Randomised controlled study of oral erythromycin for treatment of gastrointestinal dysmotility in preterm infants

    PubMed Central

    Ng, P; So, K; Fung, K; Lee, C; Fok, T; Wong, E; Wong, W; Cheung, K; Cheng, A

    2001-01-01

    AIM—To evaluate the effectiveness of oral erythromycin as a prokinetic agent for the treatment of moderately severe gastrointestinal dysmotility in preterm very low birthweight infants.
METHODS—A prospective, double blind, randomised, placebo controlled study in a tertiary referral centre of a university teaching hospital was conducted on 56 preterm infants (< 1500 g) consecutively admitted to the neonatal unit. The infants were randomly allocated by minimisation to receive oral erythromycin (12.5 mg/kg, every six hours for 14 days) or an equivalent volume of placebo solution (normal saline) if they received less than half the total daily fluid intake or less than 75 ml/kg/day of milk feeds by the enteral route on day 14 of life. The times taken to establish half, three quarters, and full enteral feeding after the drug treatment were compared between the two groups. Potential adverse effects of oral erythromycin and complications associated with parenteral nutrition were assessed as secondary outcomes.
RESULTS—Twenty seven and 29 infants received oral erythromycin and placebo solution respectively. The times taken to establish half, three quarters, and full enteral feeding after the drug treatment were significantly shorter in the group receiving oral erythromycin than in those receiving the placebo (p < 0.05, p < 0.05 and p < 0.0001 respectively). There was also a trend suggesting that more infants with prolonged feed intolerance developed cholestatic jaundice in the placebo than in the oral erythromycin group (10v 5 infants). None of the infants receiving oral erythromycin developed cardiac dysrhythmia, pyloric stenosis, or septicaemia caused by multiresistant organisms.
CONCLUSIONS—Oral erythromycin is effective in facilitating enteral feeding in preterm very low birthweight infants with moderately severe gastrointestinal dysmotility. Treated infants can achieve full enteral feeding 10 days earlier, and this may result in a substantial saving on

  13. Tocilizumab in early progressive rheumatoid arthritis: FUNCTION, a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Burmester, Gerd R; Rigby, William F; van Vollenhoven, Ronald F; Rubbert-Roth, Andrea; Kelman, Ariella; Dimonaco, Sophie; Mitchell, Nina

    2016-01-01

    Objectives The efficacy of tocilizumab (TCZ), an anti-interleukin-6 receptor antibody, has not previously been evaluated in a population consisting exclusively of patients with early rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Methods In a double-blind randomised controlled trial (FUNCTION), 1162 methotrexate (MTX)-naive patients with early progressive RA were randomly assigned (1:1:1:1) to one of four treatment groups: 4 mg/kg TCZ+MTX, 8 mg/kg TCZ+MTX, 8 mg/kg TCZ+placebo and placebo+MTX (comparator group). The primary outcome was remission according to Disease Activity Score using 28 joints (DAS28–erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR) <2.6) at week 24. Radiographic and physical function outcomes were also evaluated. We report results through week 52. Results The intent-to-treat population included 1157 patients. Significantly more patients receiving 8 mg/kg TCZ+MTX and 8 mg/kg TCZ+placebo than receiving placebo+MTX achieved DAS28-ESR remission at week 24 (45% and 39% vs 15%; p<0.0001). The 8 mg/kg TCZ+MTX group also achieved significantly greater improvement in radiographic disease progression and physical function at week 52 than did patients treated with placebo+MTX (mean change from baseline in van der Heijde–modified total Sharp score, 0.08 vs 1.14 (p=0.0001); mean reduction in Health Assessment Disability Index, −0.81 vs −0.64 (p=0.0024)). In addition, the 8 mg/kg TCZ+placebo and 4 mg/kg TCZ+MTX groups demonstrated clinical efficacy that was at least as effective as MTX for these key secondary endpoints. Serious adverse events were similar among treatment groups. Adverse events resulting in premature withdra