bims-librar Biomed news
on Biomedical librarianship
Issue of 2019‒02‒24
fourteen papers selected by
Thomas Krichel
Open Library Society


  1. Am J Health Promot. 2019 Feb 19. 890117119831864
    Terry PE.
      TIME magazine selected "The Guardians and the War on Truth" as their 2018 "Person of the Year." Journalists everywhere urge us to remember writer Jamal Khashoggi's murder as a harsh testament to the risks of speaking truth to power. But Khashoggi was a perceived threat to a totalitarian government, surely truth is more respected in America, right? Suggest that to the Columbia University School of Law who built a "silencing science tracker" to document "government attempts to restrict or prohibit scientific research, education or discussion." In this editorial, I argue that researchers who publish their scientific findings in peer-reviewed journals must also embrace the role of "guardians" against the growing assaults on science. In an era where the majority of Americans get their health information via social media, our challenge as scientists is to transcend our basic calling as truth seekers and truth tellers. Closely aligned with this truth guardian's work in health promotion is the True Health Initiative, a cohort of renowned scientists dedicated to offering "clarity over confusion"; they "work to spread the fundamental evidence and consensus-based truths about lifestyle as medicine." When purveyors of falsehoods have such unfettered channels as they do today, my hope for scientists and for this journal is that we grow our ambitions relating to curating facts, authoritative dissemination, and persuasive communications alongside our usual work of learning and teaching.
    Keywords:  confirmation bias; fact checking; guardianship; scientific integrity; truth
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1177/0890117119831864
  2. Nurs Forum. 2019 Feb 21.
    Parnell TA, Stichler JF, Barton AJ, Loan LA, Boyle DK, Allen PE.
      AIM: To propose a conceptual definition of health literacy incorporating system demands, burdens, and complexities that are a critical part of patients' level of health literacy.BACKGROUND: Health literacy is used frequently in health care and often is confused with patients' reading and comprehension levels.
    DESIGN: Walker and Avant's concept analysis method was used.
    DATA SOURCE: Cochrane Library, Cumulative Index of Nursing and Health Literature, OVID, PubMed, EBSCO Host databases, and Google Scholar.
    REVIEW METHOD: The primary Search terms and MeSH terms used were health literacy, patient education, patient engagement, patient activation, health communication, health promotion, and nursing. Empirical and nonempirical articles published in English were reviewed. Ten systematic literature reviews were included.
    RESULTS: A new definition of health literacy is provided based on four components that include: system demands, burdens, and complexities; measurable components, processes and outcomes; the dynamic nature of health literacy; and demonstration of the direct relationship of informed decisions to informed actions. Defining attributes, antecedents, and consequences are identified. Implications for nursing practice, education, and research are given.
    CONCLUSIONS: Because health literacy is a dynamic and quickly changing concept, further exploration and evolution of the concept is warranted as empirical research and theoretical literature emerge.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1111/nuf.12331
  3. J Vet Med Educ. 2019 Feb 21. 1-XX
    Garner BC, Hartle DY, Creevy KE.
      The overall purpose of this study was to assess the information-seeking strategies of individuals representing different stages of veterinary training. More specifically, we conducted a survey to evaluate textbook ownership, to determine the preferred types of educational resources and why these preferences exist, and to determine if changes arise as training progresses. We asked students in the veterinary curriculum, interns, residents, and recent graduates from the University of Georgia (UGA) College of Veterinary Medicine (CVM) to participate in a confidential online survey. A total of 184 individuals participated. Respondents were grouped into one of six categories: recent graduates ( n = 6), interns/residents ( n = 11), fourth-year students ( n = 21), third-year students ( n = 46), second-year students ( n = 73), and first-year students ( n = 27). The results showed that veterinary students used class notes and non-veterinary search engines initially, whereas interns and residents consulted textbooks and the primary literature as their first sources to answer a veterinary question. Veterinary students had accrued textbooks over sequential years in the curriculum, but many interns and residents had almost twice as many textbooks as those who had not pursued additional training after graduation. An ANOVA showed that first-year students reported a preference for printed textbooks significantly more frequently than the third-year and fourth-year students ( F(5,163) = 3.265, p = .006, and p = .012, respectively). Decreased cost was most frequently cited as the factor that would increase textbook purchases.
    Keywords:  curriculum; graduate education; resident/intern education; student affairs
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.3138/jvme.1017-150r1
  4. BMC Med Inform Decis Mak. 2019 Feb 20. 19(1): 35
    Oxman AD, Paulsen EJ.
      BACKGROUND: Information about effects of treatments based on unsystematic reviews of research evidence may be misleading. However, finding trustworthy information about the effects of treatments based on systematic reviews, which is accessible to patients and the public can be difficult. The objectives of this study were to identify and evaluate free sources of health information for patients and the public that provide information about effects of treatments based on systematic reviews.METHODS: We reviewed websites that we and our colleagues knew of, searched for government sponsored health information websites, and searched for online sources of health information that provide evidence-based information. To be included in our review, a website had to be available in English, freely accessible, and intended for patients and the public. In addition, it had to have a broad scope, not limited to specific conditions or types of treatments. It had to include a description of how the information is prepared and the description had to include a statement about using systematic reviews. We compared the included websites by searching for information about the effects of eight treatments.
    RESULTS: Three websites met our inclusion criteria: Cochrane Evidence, Informed Health, and PubMed Health. The first two websites produce content, whereas PubMed Health aggregated content. A fourth website that met our inclusion criteria, CureFacts, was under development. Cochrane Evidence provides plain language summaries of Cochrane Reviews (i.e. summaries that are intended for patients and the public). They are translated to several other languages. No information besides treatment effects is provided. Informed Health provides information about treatment effects together with other information for a wide range of topics. PubMed Health was discontinued in October 2018. It included a large number of systematic reviews of treatment effects with plain language summaries for Cochrane Reviews and some other reviews. None of the three websites included links to ongoing trials, and information about treatment effects was not reported consistently on any of the websites.
    CONCLUSION: It is possible for patients and the public to access trustworthy information about the effects of treatments using the two of the websites included in this review.
    Keywords:  Evidence-informed decision-making; Health information; Information services; Internet; Patient information; Plain language; Systematic reviews; Treatments
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1186/s12911-019-0772-5
  5. BMC Public Health. 2019 Feb 21. 19(1): 221
    Tang C, Wu X, Chen X, Pan B, Yang X.
      BACKGROUND: Health literacy and health-information seeking behaviour (HISB) play vital roles in health outcome improvements. This study examines the extent of income-related inequality in health literacy and health-information seeking as well as the contributions of the main socioeconomic determinants in China.METHODS: We analysed representative data of participants aged over 18 years as well as older adults from the Guangzhou Community Health Survey. A concentration index (CI) was used to quantify the degree of income-related inequity in health literacy and health-information seeking. Probit regression models were employed to decompose the CI into the contributions to each factor.
    RESULTS: Results showed a significant pro-rich distribution of adequate health literacy (CI: 0.0602, P < 0.001; horizontal index [HI]: 0.0562, P < 0.001) and HISB from healthcare professionals (CI: 0.105, P < 0.001; HI: 0.0965, P < 0.001). The pro-rich distribution of health literacy was mainly attributable to education background (contribution: 54.76%), whereas income inequalities contributed most to the pro-rich distribution of health-information seeking among an urban population (contribution: 62.53%).
    CONCLUSION: Public interventions in China to reduce inequality in health literacy and HISBs among the urban population, coupled with easily accessible information sources on health, warrant further attention from policymakers.
    Keywords:  China; Health Information Seeking; Health Literacy; Inequality
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1186/s12889-019-6538-2
  6. Patient Educ Couns. 2019 Feb 08. pii: S0738-3991(18)30718-3. [Epub ahead of print]
    Jo HS, Park K, Jung SM.
      OBJECTIVE: This study was a scoping review of research on cancer-related health information seeking and needs of patients, survivor, non-patients, and caregivers.METHODS: This study used the COSI model to search for articles published from 2007 to 2017.
    RESULTS: In total, 117 articles with titles and abstracts including the following terms were selected: cancer, health, information, seeking. Non-patients obtained information from the Internet, doctors, and media, whereas patients obtained information from doctors, the Internet, and media. Information needs were the highest for treatment, prognosis, and psychosocial support. Patients had the highest need for information on prognosis and treatment, whereas non-patients had the highest need for general cancer information, prevention, and cancer examination. Caregivers sought information about treatment, psychosocial support, and prevention.
    CONCLUSION: This study revealed an increase in the number of research articles identifying cancer patients' information needs. Cancer patients rely on health professionals for information; thus, relevant materials are needed. Furthermore, not only medical but also psychosocial support information is needed.
    PRACTICE IMPLICATIONS: There is a need for cancer information from health professionals, and thus for patient-centered training materials. Furthermore, a survey system to evaluate consumers' cancer information needs should be developed.
    Keywords:  Cancer-related information; Needs; Scoping review
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pec.2019.02.004
  7. BMC Public Health. 2019 Feb 21. 19(1): 225
    Jaks R, Baumann I, Juvalta S, Dratva J.
      BACKGROUND: Digital media are increasingly abundant and used to seek health information, however, to date very little is known on parents' seeking behavior in the context of child's health and development outside English-speaking and Scandinavian countries. By investigating the prevalence of, and reasons for use, we studied parents' perception of the Internet as a resource for improving their health-related knowledge.METHODS: The survey was conducted in a random sample of 2573 Swiss-German parents with at least one child aged less-than 2 years old. Parents received a mailed invitation to fill in an online questionnaire. Two reminders were sent, the later with a paper questionnaire attached. The questionnaire included questions on use of print, digital, and personal information sources, as well as different information situations: general health and development or illness. We ran descriptive analyses on information seeking behavior, type of digital media used, reasons of use. We also conducted regression analyses to explore factors associated with parental perceptions with regard to the Internet's utility as a source for health information.
    RESULTS: A total of 769 questionnaires were returned (response rate 30%). Nearly all parents (91%) used digital media for seeking information on their child's health and development, and the main reason for use was indicated as being the 24/7 availability of information. Search engines (55%) and webpages for parents (47%) were by far the most frequently used digital media. Generally, the internet is perceived as a good resource, especially by fathers (OR = 1.80, 95% CI: 1.03-3.16). However, a large percentage of parents are skeptical about the correctness of online info (91%), are unsure about their interpretive understanding, and ask for guidance from their pediatrician (67%).
    CONCLUSIONS: The Internet has become a highly frequented source of information for Swiss-German parents on children's health with largely valuable perceptions of its utility. Digital media are used in addition to and not in replacement of print media and personal contacts. Increasing parental guidance by health and public health professionals could improve parental digital health utilization and empower parents in the new role they adopt.
    Keywords:  Child health; Digital media; Health information sources; Information seeking; Internet; Parenting
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1186/s12889-019-6524-8
  8. BMC Bioinformatics. 2019 Feb 18. 20(1): 84
    Kuznetsova I, Lugmayr A, Siira SJ, Rackham O, Filipovska A.
      BACKGROUND: Prioritisation of gene ontology terms from differential gene expression analyses in a two-dimensional format remains a challenge with exponentially growing data volumes. Typically, gene ontology terms are represented as tree-maps that enclose all data into defined space. However, large datasets make this type of visualisation appear cluttered and busy, and often not informative as some labels are omitted due space limits, especially when published in two-dimensional (2D) figures.RESULTS: Here we present an open source CirGO (Circular Gene Ontology) software that visualises non-redundant two-level hierarchically structured ontology terms from gene expression data in a 2D space. Gene ontology terms based on statistical significance were summarised with a semantic similarity algorithm and grouped by hierarchical clustering. This software visualises the most enriched gene ontology terms in an informative, comprehensive and intuitive format that is achieved by organising data from the most relevant to the least, as well as the appropriate use of colours and supporting information. Additionally, CirGO is an easy to use software that supports researchers with little computational background to present their gene ontology data in a publication ready format.
    CONCLUSIONS: Our easy to use open source CirGO Python software package provides biologists with a succinct presentation of terms and functions that are most represented in a specific gene expression data set in a visually appealing 2D format (e.g. for reporting research results in scientific articles). CirGO is freely available at https://github.com/IrinaVKuznetsova/CirGO.git .
    Keywords:  Bioinformatics; Data organisation; Gene ontology terms; Python; Visualisation
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1186/s12859-019-2671-2
  9. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2019 Feb 18. pii: E591. [Epub ahead of print]16(4):
    A Rahim AI, Ibrahim MI, A Salim FN, Ariffin MAI.
      Health organizations have widely adopted social media for health promotion, public health communication conveyance, and organizational promotion activities. However, little published data exists on the factors that facilitate health information diffusion in South East Asia, especially Malaysia compared with Western countries. This study aimed to investigate factors associated with good engagement rates among internet users on the Facebook (FB) page of Ministry of Health Malaysia. In this observational study, 2123 FB posts were randomly selected. Data dated from 1 November 2016 to 31 October 2017 was gathered from the Facebook Insight. The logistic regression model was applied to identify factors associated with good engagement rates. This study found that a FB post with a good engagement rate was significantly associated with a health education post (Adjusted Odd Ratio (AOR): 3.80, 95% Confidence Interval CI: 3.02⁻4.78, p < 0.001), a risk communication post (AOR: 1.77, 95% CI: 1.39⁻2.26, p < 0.001), a post in the afternoon (AOR: 1.76, 95% CI: 1.34⁻2.31, p < 0.001) or in the evening (AOR: 1.48, 95% CI: 1.20⁻1.82, p < 0.001), and a video format (AOR: 3.74, 95% CI: 1.44⁻9.71, p = 0.007). Therefore, we present the first comprehensive analysis of health information engagement among internet users in Malaysia. The growing trends of online health information-seeking behaviors and demand for the availability of validated health information require effective strategies by public health organizations to disseminate health information and achieve better audience engagement on social media.
    Keywords:  health information; health promotion; public health communication; social media
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16040591
  10. Neurointervention. 2019 Feb 19.
    Huh S.
      It aimed to present the definition of personal information based on Korean laws that protect personal information and the process of protection of personal information in journal publishing based on the guidelines of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors and Committee of Publication Ethics. Two Korean laws relate to the protection of personal information in human subject research: the Personal Information Protection Act and the Bioethics and Safety Act. These laws were enacted to prevent the unauthorized use of Koreans' personal information including medical information. Personal information can be divided into personally identifiable information including resident registration numbers and sensitive information including health information. To protect personal information in journal publishing, institutional review board (IRB) approval and obtaining informed consent from patients is recommended or mandatory in clinical studies. However, retrospective chart reviews may be exempted from IRB approval, while obtaining informed consent is recommended for all case reports. Journal policies may vary with regard to whether a copy of the informed consent form is collected from authors, since the Committee of Publication Ethics guideline does not specifically recommend collecting it. In discussions of adopting clinical data-sharing policies, transfer of data including nonidentifiable personal information to another country is an unresolved issue. Furthermore, a public data repository site should be established in Korea for data to be deposited. To protect subjects' privacy and to prevent legal issues potentially arising from privacy concerns, editors and publishers should do their best to publish articles with appropriate oversight on subjects' personal information.
    Keywords:  Ethics committees, Research; Informed consent; Personally identifiable information; Privacy; Republic of Korea
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.5469/neuroint.2019.00031
  11. Health Promot Perspect. 2019 ;9(1): 85-88
    Basch CH, Milano N, Hillyer GC.
      Background: Social media is a driving force in the sharing of information. The purpose of this study is to describe fluoride related content on Instagram, a popular social media platform. Methods: Content categories were created and coded to better describe the nature of the posts.Data collection occurred in three sessions, two months apart. Only relevant posts that included images and had text written in the English language were included. Results: The most common topics were conspiracy theory, contained in 37.3% of posts, followed by dangers of fluoride to health (30.3%) and benefits of fluoride to teeth (28.7%). Of the posts reviewed, 96/300 (32.0%) contained pro-fluoride content while 139/300 (63.0%) posts featured anti-fluoride content. Content varied significantly between pro- and anti-fluoride posts. Conclusion: Our review of Instagram posts revealed that there were approximately 300 posts focused on fluoride related content. Of these posts, there was a higher number of anti-fluoride related content compared to pro-fluoride related content. With accessibility comes the potential for misinformation. Future efforts from medical providers need to focus on educating consumers about reliable sources for health information on the internet.
    Keywords:  Fluoride; Internet; Social Media
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.15171/hpp.2019.11
  12. Genes (Basel). 2019 Feb 19. pii: E159. [Epub ahead of print]10(2):
    Song M, Baek SH, Heo GE, Lee JH.
      BACKGROUND: Although there are many studies of drugs and their side effects, the underlying mechanisms of these side effects are not well understood. It is also difficult to understand the specific pathways between drugs and side effects.OBJECTIVE: The present study seeks to construct putative paths between drugs and their side effects by applying text-mining techniques to free text of biomedical studies, and to develop ranking metrics that could identify the most-likely paths.
    MATERIALS AND METHODS: We extracted three types of relationships-drug-protein, protein-protein, and protein⁻side effect-from biomedical texts by using text mining and predefined relation-extraction rules. Based on the extracted relationships, we constructed whole drug-protein⁻side effect paths. For each path, we calculated its ranking score by a new ranking function that combines corpus- and ontology-based semantic similarity as well as co-occurrence frequency.
    RESULTS: We extracted 13 plausible biomedical paths connecting drugs and their side effects from cancer-related abstracts in the PubMed database. The top 20 paths were examined, and the proposed ranking function outperformed the other methods tested, including co-occurrence, COALS, and UMLS by P@5-P@20. In addition, we confirmed that the paths are novel hypotheses that are worth investigating further.
    DISCUSSION: The risk of side effects has been an important issue for the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). However, the causes and mechanisms of such side effects have not been fully elucidated. This study extends previous research on understanding drug side effects by using various techniques such as Named Entity Recognition (NER), Relation Extraction (RE), and semantic similarity.
    CONCLUSION: It is not easy to reveal the biomedical mechanisms of side effects due to a huge number of possible paths. However, we automatically generated predictable paths using the proposed approach, which could provide meaningful information to biomedical researchers to generate plausible hypotheses for the understanding of such mechanisms.
    Keywords:  Biomedical Text Mining; Inference of Drug-Protein-Side Effect Relation; Semantic Relatedness
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.3390/genes10020159
  13. Early Hum Dev. 2019 Feb;pii: S0378-3782(19)30069-6. [Epub ahead of print]129 79-80
    Victor G.
      This WASP (Write a Scientific Paper) Best Practice Guidelines (BPG) will wrap up all of the aspects pertaining to qualitative analyses as well as some more theoretical aspects of paper writing. These include types of studies and their importance in the hierarchy of evidence base as practiced in medicine. In addition, two papers review very practical aspects of paper writing including which journals to target (and why), and realistic methods for dealing with editors. Another paper also deals with fraud and hoax in science. Since the next BPG collection pertaining to WASP will deal with qualitative methods of analysis, by way of introduction to different ways of doing things, this collection will also review the practical differences between writing and presentation in the humanities and in the sciences. A paper will also very briefly review interdisciplinarity, including the depiction of interdisciplinarians as envisaged in future, in the (albeit speculative) science fiction genre. A final paper will demonstrate several precepts that have been highlighted over these BPGs, utilising as a practical example, a novel study that uses past requirements in order to estimate anticipated trends in cardiology service requirements at Mater Dei Hospital, Malta.
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.earlhumdev.2019.02.001
  14. Epilepsy Behav. 2019 Feb 16. pii: S1525-5050(18)31007-2. [Epub ahead of print]93 7-11
    Wong VSS, Stevenson M, Mott J, Sahaya K.
      PURPOSE: The prevalence and characteristics of seizure and epilepsy research published in nonneurology journals are unknown. Characterizing this published research allows for insight into the relevance of seizures and epilepsy in other specialties and may increase opportunity for cross-specialty collaboration.METHODS: In this observational study, we reviewed the top five highly cited clinical journals within eleven specialties in the InCites Journal Citation Reports (JCR) database (2016). For each specialty, we collected 2013-2017 PubMed data on publications with MeSH Major Topic of "seizures," "epilepsy," or "status epilepticus." Medical subject headings (MeSH) in PubMed are standardized terms assigned by subject analysts. MeSH Major Topic identifies articles in which a specified topic is the major focus of the article. We also retrieved author country and medical specialty affiliations. We analyzed whether author specialty affiliation was 1) concordant with journal medical specialty, 2) neurology-related, or 3) other.
    RESULTS: Articles on "seizures," "epilepsy," or "status epilepticus" had the following prevalence in specialty clinical journals: cardiac and cardiovascular systems (0.01%); clinical neurology (5.34%); critical care medicine (0.20%); emergency medicine (0.47%); general and internal medicine (0.44%); neuroimaging (2.05%); neurosurgery (2.23%); obstetrics and gynecology (0.16%); oncology (0.01%); pediatrics (0.69%); and psychiatry (0.23%). Within general and internal medicine, neuroimaging, and pediatrics, seizure-related articles are more likely to be first-authored by someone with a neurology-related affiliation. Within critical care medicine, emergency medicine, neurosurgery, and obstetrics and gynecology, seizure-related articles were more likely to be first-authored by someone whose affiliation is within the field.
    CONCLUSIONS: Our study characterizes seizure and epilepsy research published in nonneurology journals. We found that there is a paucity of such research published in nonneurology journals, whether authored by neurologists or other specialists. This is not ideal since nonneurologists are often first-line providers for recognizing, diagnosing, or managing seizures prior to assessment by a neurologist. Cross-specialty collaboration should be strongly encouraged in clinical research.
    Keywords:  Epilepsy; Interdisciplinary communication; Intersectoral collaboration; Neurology; Publishing; Seizures
    DOI:  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.yebeh.2019.01.032