Researchers at the University of Arizona Medical Center are studying whether small, wearable sensors that measure a patient’s activity, heart rate, wakefulness and other biometrics can predict and prevent falls, one of the leading causes of injury to hospitalized patients.
In an innovative study, researchers are using Zephyr BioModule sensors to continuously track patients’ skin temperature, physical activity, heart rate, respirations and echocardiogram readings. The more than 2GB of patient data collected daily per sensor then is plotted against an algorithm that estimates fall risk.
The technology will collect a massive amount of data regarding patient activity while in the hospital, and will help more accurately pinpoint which patients are most likely to fall. Although the study is solely collecting data for this phase, eventually the system can be used to alert nursing staff or even a family member when a fall seems imminent.
More than 500,000 falls happen each year in U.S. hospitals, resulting in 150,000 injuries, according to an estimate from the National Patient Safety Foundation. This ongoing issue prompted UAMC’s Administrator of Nursing Research...[read more]
UA Sarver Heart Center Expert Offers Insights into New Uses of a Surgical Adhesive in New England Journal of Medicine Review
Rapid advances in minimally invasive and catheter cardiovascular technologies have created a growing need for the development of effective adhesives that facilitate the deployment of these technologies while adequately controlling blood-clotting and bleeding risks, said Marvin J. Slepian, MD, a cardiologist at the University of Arizona Sarver Heart Center who has expertise in interventional cardiology device procedures and biomedical engineering.
Dr. Slepian and Danny Bluestein, PhD, professor of bioengineering at Stony Brook University in New York, co-authored a review article in the New England Journal of Medicine (April 17, 2014), citing the benefits of hydrophobic light-activated adhesive (HLAA), a fluid, blood-resistant tissue glue that can be applied as a liquid before a procedure is performed and activated on demand to adhere, cure and bond.
Increasingly, stent valves and stent grafts, and the use of clips, patches, occluders, endoluminal paving (the coating of the inside surface of the vessel), and ventricular-assist...[read more]
Easter Bunny, Mickey and Minnie Mouse to Visit Patients for “Jazmyn’s ‘Lunch-Break’ and ‘Organ-Donor’ Program”
WHAT: Easter Bunny, Mickey and Minnie Mouse to Visit Patients for “Jazmyn’s ‘Lunch-Break’ and ‘Organ-Donor’ Program”
Pediatric patients at The University of Arizona Medical Center – Diamond Children’s will receive a special visit from the Easter Bunny, Mickey and Minnie Mouse on Friday, April 18, noon to 2 p.m.
Volunteers from Jazmyn’s “LUNCH-BREAK” arranged for the special visit.
Jimmy John’s is donating lunch, Dunkin Donuts is donating donuts, and patients will receive an Easter basket full of goodies, made by volunteers from Beautiful Savior Lutheran Church Academy and Charities.
“Jazmyn’s Lunch Break” is a Tucson community non-profit organization that brings together university student volunteers, community volunteers and family members of children receiving care at Diamond Children’s for a lunch hour of respite,...[read more]
Pursuing Value in a Time of Healthcare Transformation: Delivering Quality Care to Diverse Populations
The next Diversity Seminar will be on Friday, April 25, 2014 and feature Joseph R. Betancourt, MD, MPH, Director, The Disparities Solutions Center Senior Scientist, Mongan Institute for Health Policy, Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Program Director of Multicultural Education, Massachusetts General Hospital, Co-Founder, Quality Interactions, Inc.
Joseph R. Betancourt, MD, MPH
Pursuing Value in a Time of Healthcare Transformation: Delivering Quality Care to Diverse PopulationsBiography
Dr. Betancourt directs the Disparities Solutions Center, which works with healthcare organizations to improve quality of care, address racial and ethnic disparities, and achieve equity. He is Director of Multicultural Education for Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), and an expert in...[read more]
A sellout crowd eager for information about telemedicine services attended the recent inaugural Northern Arizona presentation of the Arizona Telemedicine Program (ATP)’s full-day telemedicine training conference, “Arizona Telemedicine Course: Applications, Infrastructure, Reimbursement.” Held in Flagstaff, the conference featured nationally recognized speakers representing several high-profile Arizona telehealth programs that are using the technology to improve patient health.
Designed for those who are new to telemedicine as well as those interested in expanding the scope of their telemedicine services, the conference covered patient and provider education programs that take place via video, as well as medical specialty services, including teleneurology, telestroke, tele-epilepsy, teleradiology, telecardiology, telediabetes and telepsychiatry.
“I think it’s well rounded and I appreciate the opportunity to have this in Northern Arizona,” said participant Cheri Wells, director of behavioral health for Flagstaff-based Native Americans for Community Action, which started a telebehavioral health program...[read more]
The indie pop band Foster the People will sing some of their songs to hospitalized children and staff today at the University of Arizona Medical Center – Diamond Children’s at 3:30 p.m., Wed., April 16.
The group is composed of Mark Foster (vocals, keyboards, piano, synthesizers, guitar, programming, percussion), Cubbie Fink (bass and backing vocals) and Mark Pontius (drums, percussion). The group's music, described as melodic dance-infused pop and rock, spanning many genres.
WHAT: Free Healthy Eye Screenings
At these University of Arizona Medical Center and UA Department of Ophthalmology sponsored healthy eye screenings, we check for cataracts, glaucoma, diabetes, macular degeneration and dry eye. Screenings are recommended for individuals over age 18, those with a family history of eye disease, a diagnosis of diabetes and/or high blood pressure, and for those taking certain medications. Click here to view and post the flier.
DATE & TIME: SATURDAY, APRIL 26, 8 A.M. - NOON
Free eye screenings also will be held Saturday, May 17 and June 21 – same time.
PLACE: St. Elizabeth’s Health Center
The University of Arizona Department of Ophthalmology and Vision Science, in conjunction with the University of...[read more]
Pulmonary researcher Louise Hecker, PhD, has joined the University of Arizona College of Medicine – Tucson as assistant professor of medicine in the Department of Medicine, Division of Pulmonary, Allergy, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine.
Dr. Hecker, who joins the UA from the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB), is first-author of a study, “Reversal of Persistent Fibrosis in Aging by Targeting Nox4-Nrf2 Redox Imbalance,” published April 9 online in Science Translational Medicine.
“Dr. Hecker will be a key contributor in UA efforts to fully develop novel programs in respiratory medicine, lung biology and drug discovery,” said Joe G.N. Garcia, MD, UA senior vice president for health sciences. “With her arrival, this truly is an exciting time for pulmonary fibrosis research at the UA.”
“We are very fortunate to have recruited one of the top young scientists in the field of lung fibrosis to the UA. Dr. Hecker provides unique perspectives on lung scarring, cellular deterioration with age and tissue regeneration,” said Kenneth S. Knox, MD, chief of the...[read more]
TOPCAT Trial Tests Possible Treatment for Patients with Heart Failure and Preserved Heart Pump Function
Can Spironolactone, a drug with multiple actions on the heart and blood vessels, improve outcomes in a hard-to-treat group of heart failure patients? This was a question addressed by the “Treatment of Preserved Cardiac Function Heart Failure with an Aldosterone Antagonist (TOPCAT)” trial.
Currently, treatment is very challenging for heart failure patients who have normal or near-normal ejection fraction, a number that describes the percentage of blood pumped out of the left ventricle (the heart’s main pumping chamber) with each heart beat. Generally, above 50 percent is thought to be a normal ejection fraction, said Nancy K. Sweitzer, MD, PhD, director of the University of Arizona Sarver Heart Center and chief of the Division of Cardiology at the UA College of Medicine – Tucson, who serves on the TOPCAT executive committee.
Although many effective treatments are available for heart failure patients with a low ejection fraction, no therapy ever has been shown to significantly affect outcomes in heart failure with preserved ejection fraction, which accounts for about 50 percent of heart failure in the United States and is very prevalent among the...[read more]
Kids of Steele will host a special “Team Up” event with UA football Coach Rich Rodriguez on Thursday, April 10.
The event is for children 5-years through 8th grade, who will have the opportunity to participate in practice drills and other football activities with Coach Rodriguez and his staff.
The event is from 5– 6 p.m., and families are invited to stay and watch a family-friendly movie on the jumbotron at 6:30 p.m. at Arizona Football Stadium (northeast corner, Gate 2)
“Children will be able to practice like real UA football players, while supporting cutting-edge research that improves the lives of children right here in our community,” said Cecie Davenport, Kids of Steele board member.
Kids of Steele is the family auxiliary of the UA Steele Children’s Research Center and is dedicated to teaching children the importance of community service through service projects and family-friendly fundraising events that benefit the UA Steele Center. The group has raised more than $100,000 in approximately three years. To learn more, please visit...[read more]