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Journal of Nursing Theory and Practice

OCTOBER 30, 2016

[Empathy research among nurses - comparison of the scales empathy: Jefferson Scale of Physician Empathy (JSPE) and the Interpersonal Reactivity Index (IRI)]

NAGY Ivett Klára, ÖREG Zsolt

[Aim of the research: comparison of the two internationally validated self-administered questionnaire (Jefferson Scale of Physician Empathy (JSPE) (Hojat et al., 2001, 2002a, 2002b, 2003) and the Interpersonal Reactivity Index (IRI) (Davis, 1983) - during empathy research among nurses. Research and sampling methods: a quantitative cross-sectional study applying two internationally validated self-administered questionnaire (Interpersonal Reactivity Index (IRI), Jefferson Scale of Physician Empathy (JSPE)), as well as home-made socio-demographic survey, shared online. The online questionnaires have been completed by 101 nurses in different age, having different qualification levels and working currently in Hungary in different areas of health care. The sample consists of 91 women and 10 men nurses. 89 nurses work in hospitals in the sample, 7 of them work in health centre one of them is ambulance officer and 4 of them are home nurse. Results: The applied questionnaire is acceptable based on the reliability statistical analysis (Cronbach’s  0.798 and 0.817). The results of IRI show in scale exploiting the professional specificity. In case of Perspective taking the used scale range is 11-28, while in the case of personal distress it shrank to 2-22 interval (as long as the total range is 1-28). Average and standard deviation in each dimension are (s): EC = 19.4 (s = 4.26); PT = 18.5 (s = 4.26); FS = 17.23 (s = 5.32), and PD = 10.85 (s = 4.66). In the total range of JSPE scale the mean empathy level is 98.5 and the standard deviation is 14.425. The same correlation relationship turned up between these two questionnaires as the developer published. These underline profession specific dimensions with direct association of the patient care (r factor EC=0,507, PT=0,447). Most of the questions related to socio-demographic factors have not been verified. Relationship emerged between the gender and the IRI personal distress dimension and the empathy value of JSPE according to the assumption for the benefit of women. It appears in scale of JSPE in perspective taking factor primarily. The extra working time had no show link with empathy, but private sector workers’ empathic concern was higher. The religion as a sociological characteristics was represented in the fantasy scale dimension of the IRI with a significantly higher value. It failed to detect any connection between the empathy and satisfaction of needs. Conclusion: Based on the study the JSPE questionnaire is admissible in Hungary. Next to the IRI it can reveal the empathy dimensions major from the patient’s view and it can make so comparable the empathy levels in other similar research projects. The women’s higher emphatic level was verified, but the length of the practice, the qualification and other socio-demographic aspects need further investigation, their effect aren’t discovered even in the research literature. Researchers steady emphasize how important is the empathy in the patient care to improve the efficacy of which would be accounted in Hungarian postgraduate courses as well. ]

Clinical Neuroscience

SEPTEMBER 30, 2016

Cerebral vasomotor reactivity in fibromyalgia patients and its relationship to central neuropathic pain

GULER Sibel, KURTOGLU S. Hakan, KEHAYA Sezgin, PAMUK Nuri, CELIK Yahya

Background - Cerebral vasomotor reactivity, defined as the cerebral vasculature response to hypoxia, is not wellunderstood in fibromyalgia (FM) patients. This study investigated the difference in the cerebrovascular reactivity (i.e., responsiveness to hypercapnia was evaluated by use of breath- holding index) to the breath-holding index (BHI) between patients with fibromyalgia and a group of normal controls. Methods - The study included 40 FM patients and 40 healthy subjects. Cerebrovascular reactivity was evaluated using the BHI, which is a nonaggressive, well-tolerated, real-time, reproducible screening method to study cerebral haemodynamics. Insonation depth and basal velocity were symmetrical and not significantly different between the two groups (p>0.05). All patients completed the Revised Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire (FIQR), Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS), visual analogue scale (VAS), and the somatization subscale of the SCL-90-R symptom checklist. Results - The BHI ranged from 0.30 to 2.20 (mean 1.11±0.45) in the FM patients and 1.10 to 2.80 (mean 1.90±0.35) in the control group (p<0.001). Disease duration and right BHIaverage and left BHIaverage values exhibited a significant negative correlation (r=-0.877; p<0.001, r=-0.842; p<0.001, respectively). As pain and fatigue scores increased, the right BHIaverage and left BHIaverage values decreased (r=-0.431; p=0.005, r=-0.544; p<0.001, r=-0.341; p=0.031, r=-0.644; p<0.001, respectively). Conclusions - BHI values showed that cerebrovascular reactivity in FM patients decreased in comparison to healthy individuals. BHI decreased as disease duration and severity increased. Cerebrovascular reactivity decreased in FM patients, and this phenomenon should be accepted as an abnormality. Additionally, this outcome may have been the result of a mechanism responsible for central neuropathic pain.

Hypertension and nephrology

FEBRUARY 20, 2014

[Effect of age on the function of renin-angiotensin system]


[Angiotensin II (Ang II) by activating angiotensin type 1 receptors (AT1R) is one of the most potent vasoconstrictors in the regulation of vasomotor tone and thus systemic blood pressure. In this study, we hypothesized that aging alters Ang II - induced vasomotor responses and expression of vascular mRNA and protein angiotensin type 1 receptor (AT1R). Thus, carotid arteries were isolated from newborn, young, middle age, old and senescent rats and their vasomotor responses were measured in a myograph (DMT-600) to repeated administrations of Ang II. Vascular relative AT1R mRNA level was determined by qRT-PCR and the AT1R protein density was measured by Western blot. Contractions of vessels to the first administration of Ang II increased from newborn to young and middle age rats then they decreased to senescent rats. In general, second administration of Ang II elicited reduced contractions, but they also first increased and then they decreased to old age. Similarly, the AT1R mRNA level and the AT1R protein density increased from newborn to young and middle age rats then they decreased to senescent rats. The pattern of these changes correlated with functional vasomotor data. We conclude that aging (newborn to senescence) has substantial effects on Ang II-induced vasomotor responses and AT1R signaling suggesting that it is - and thus regulation of systemic blood pressure is - determined primarily by genetic programs.]

Clinical Neuroscience

JULY 30, 2013

[Transcranial Doppler assessment of cerebral vasomotor reactivity in evaluating effects of vinpocetine in cerebral small vessel disease: a pilot study]

JOVANOVIC B. Zagorka, PAVLOVIC M. Aleksandra, PEKMEZOVIC Tatjana, MIJAJLOVIC Milija, NADEŽDA Šternić Čovičković

[Background - There are still dilemmas about the vasodilating effect of vinpocetine, a synthetic ethyl alkaloid vincamine. The method of measuring cerebral vasomotor reactivity (VMR) by transcranial Doppler (TCD) technique before and after administration of the medication was used to estimate the degree of arterioles vasodilatation. The aim of this study was to test of the vasodilating effect of vinpocetine in patients with cerebral small vessel disease (SVD) by measuring cerebral VMR. Material and methods - Thirty patients with SVD were on 3-month-long oral treatment with 15 mg vinpocetine daily. Cerebral VMR was determined by breath holding test. The breath holding index (BHI) was calculated in standard manner and values >0.69 were considered normal. At the baseline, before treatment (I), BHI, modified Rankin scale (mRS) score, Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE) score were determined. One month later (II) BHI was assessed again, while after 3 months of treatment (III) we analyzed BHI, mRS score and MMSE score. Results - The average age of patients was 61.4±11.5 years (range 40 to 77 years), 18 (60%) female and 12 (40%) males. Values of BHIs were increased during treatment at the right MCA (I) 1.18±0.53, (II) 1.26±0.54, (III) 1.37±0.41, with statistical significance between I and III measurement (p<0.05). An increase was noted on the left MCA (I) 1.25±0.53, (II) 1.31±0.55 and (III) 1.32±0.42, but it did not reach statistical significance (p>0.05). Mean MMSE score significantly increased from baseline 27.4±2.3 to 28.5±2.0 after three months of treatment (p<0.001). Functional status showed a statistically significant improvement with mRS score increasing from 2.1±1.0 to 1.1±0.6 (p<0.001). Conclusion - This pilot study showed that 3-month-long oral treatment with vinpocetine 15 mg daily had tendency to increase BHI, indicating improvement of cerebral VMR. It is possible that higher doses of vinpocetine are needed to achieve substantial increase of VMR.]

Hypertension and nephrology

MAY 20, 2012

[Gender differencies in coronary reactivity in angiotensin II hypertension rat model]


[It is known that hypertension shows several gender specific elements both in pathogenesis and in therapy. Understanding this phenomenon may bring us closer to individualized therapy. That was the reason why we examined process of hypertensive adaptation on the level of small intramural coronary arteries. 10-10 male and female Sprague-Dawley rats were used in this study. Animals received osmotic pumps in anaesthesia, which emitted 100 ng/bwkg/min angiotensin II acetate for four weeks. After four weeks treatment, animals were sacrified and heart weights were measured. We isolated intramural, small branches of the left anterior descendant coronary artery, placed them into vessel chamber and tested biomechanical properties and pharmacological reactivity. Heart weight and wall thickness were higher in females comparing to males. However, basal vascular tone and thromboxane-mediated vasoconstriction were elevated in males. Bradykinin relaxation was bigger in females. In female animals inward eutrophic remodeling was found, while in males increased wall stress and elastic moduli dominated the adaptation process. In conclusion, initial steps of angiotensin II mediated hypertension induced markedly gender dependent alterations.]

Hungarian Immunology

MARCH 20, 2002

[Neonatal activation of interferon-γ in macrophages]

ERDŐS Melinda, MARÓDI László

[Each individual passes through developmental or transient immunodeficiency due to the immaturity of the immune system in early childhood, expecially in the neonatal period. Therefore, neonates contract infections by intracellular and extracellular microorganisms more easily than older children and adults, and develop more severe disease with a high mortality rate. A number of abnormalities in the neonate’s host defense systems have been described suggesting that the immune system at birth functionally differs from that in adults. Neonatal T and B cells show decreased reactivity to antigens and mitogens and have deficienct IgM-IgG isotype switching. Newborns have decreased functional capacities of the hemolytic complement system. Under the same in vitro and in vivo conditions neonatal granulocytes show functional deficiency earlier than adult cells. Effector mechanisms of the cell-mediated immunity involve activation of macrophages by T helper1 cytokines, particularly interferon- γ (IFN-γ). IFN-γ is the most important macrophage-activating cytokine in vivo. Neonatal T cells express lower levels of IFN-γ and macrophages are hyporesponsive to activation by this cytokine. This deficiency may be explained by decreased phosphorilation of STAT1 despite comparable expression of STAT1 protein in neonatal and adult macrophages.]

Lege Artis Medicinae

FEBRUARY 20, 2010

[Antiplatelet therapy with acetylsalicylic acid - Cardiovascular indications and haemorrhagic complications]

KISS Nóra, KISS Róbert Gábor

[Acetylsalicylic acid effectively blocks the activation of platelets, and becomes a basic element of antithrombotic therapy of patients with high cardiovascular risk. Decrease of platelet reactivity is due to the irreversible inhibition of COX- 1 isoenzime in platelets during treatment. Choosing the right dose is still not an easy task. Bleeding side effects are frequently seen in patients treated with this drug worldwide. Clinical benefit does not improves with escalated doses (300 mg), however the risk of haemorrhagic events increases. Therefore acetylsalicylic acid dose should be reduced to the effective minimal dose (75-150 mg daily) after the acute phase of atherothrombosis in order to prevent side effects. Effect of acetylsalicylic acid differs individually, it might be important screening out those patients who respond less to the drug. Resistance is still an evolving field, proper methodology is to be determined. Right indications of acetylsalicylic acid needs balance between reaching clinical benefit and avoiding side effects. The Hungarian Cardiovascular Therapeutic Consensus Conference 2009 suggested acetylsalicylic acid in primary prevention for those males only, who have overt cardiovascular risk, and SCORE result is more than 10%, with no gastrointestinal haemorrhage in medical history, and with a well-controlled hypertension. Lifelong aspirin prevention should be used after all diagnosed cardiovascular atherothrombotic event as a cornerstone of secondary prevention with low dose (75-150 mg daily) in both genders.]

Clinical Neuroscience

MAY 30, 2008



[Occlusion or high grade stenosis of the internal carotid artery may be asymptomatic depending on the collateral patterns in the circle of Willis and the reserve capacity of the microvascular (arteriolar) system. The distensibility of the cerebral arterioles may be described quantitatively by the vasomotor reactivity. We present three patients with severe stenosis of an internal carotid artery associated with more severe stenosis or occlusion of the contralateral internal carotid artery. We continuously measured blood flow velocity in both middle cerebral arteries by transcranial Doppler ultrasound in rest and for 20 minutes after IV administration of 1 g acetazolamide. Arterial blood pressure was determined with tonometry, end-tidal CO2 was determined by a capnometer. In resting condition the anterior communicating artery, the posterior communicating artery and the ophthalmic artery supplied collateral blood flow towards the side of the more severe internal carotid artery disease. Blood flow velocity decreased after acetazolamide administration in all patients in the middle cerebral arteries on the side of the more severe occlusive carotid disease, while increased on the contralateral side. We assume that the exhausted arteriolar system on the more severely affected side was not able to further dilate and the open collateral system could have driven blood towards the other side with preserved reserve capacity. The reduced blood flow velocity in the middle cerebral arteries after acetazolamide may reflect this intracerebral steal phenomenon.]

Lege Artis Medicinae

NOVEMBER 20, 2007


KOVÁTS László, BRETUS Angelika, CSUTAK Kinga, NAGY Gyöngyi, GASZTONYI Beáta

[INTRODUCTION - The vasomotor centre, the central regulator of the cardiovascular system, is localised in the rostral ventrolateral medulla oblongata. Irritation of this area and/or of the ninth and tenth cranial nerves (that are involved both in the afferent and efferent pathways of the baroreceptor reflex) causes sympathetic hyperactivity, which in some cases leads to severe resistant hypertension. A common underlying cause of this is pulsatile neurovascular compression, a vascular malformation rarely sought for. CASE REPORT - The authors present the case of a middle-aged woman with what had been considered “essential” hypertension. Magnetic resonance angiography showed vascular compression of the medulla oblongata and the departing left ninth and tenth cranial nerves as the cause of her hypertension. CONCLUSIONS - After a literature review the authors draw the attention to this rarely identified cause of resistant hypertension and to the difficulties of its diagnosis.]