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Dharshana S.,Tamil University | Dharshana S.,Operations Research in Population Health | Singh A.K.,Public Health Researcher | Sharma S.,Public Health Nutritionist | And 3 more authors.
Annals of Tropical Medicine and Public Health | Year: 2016

Introduction: Acne vulgaris is a medical condition of serious concern among adolescents. This study was conducted with the aim to compare psychosocial factors such as depression, self-esteem, and social impairments between females who had acne vulgaris and those who did not have acne vulgaris. Materials and Methods: Fifty (50) female acne cases and 100 controls (hereafter nonacne participants) in the age group of 12-25 years who were seeking treatment at the Dermatology Outpatient Department (OPD) of Saveetha Medical College, were enrolled in the study. Information about sociodemographic profiles, disease management, and normative perception was gathered. Further assessment of self-esteem, cognitive and behavioral factors, and self-efficacy was done. Results: Seventy-four percent (74%) of the acne cases were overwhelmed by their skin condition, and this was found to be statistically significant (P <.0001). More than half (58%; P <.0001) of the acne cases experienced anger while thinking of their skin conditions. Half of the number of acne cases (52%) felt that people perceived them as being dirty due to their skin condition and that it hindered them from interacting with the opposite sex. Conclusion: Adolescent females who had acne reported difficulties in overcoming the emotional disturbances occurring due to acne vulgaris. © 2016 Annals of Tropical Medicine and Public Health | Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow. Source

Laxmi V.,Saveetha Medical College and Hospital | Sharma S.,University of Nebraska Medical Center | Singh A.K.,Foundation of Healthcare Technologies Society | Amadi C.,University of Nebraska Medical Center | And 2 more authors.
Technology and Health Care | Year: 2014

The burden of lifestyle related chronic diseases have increased in recent times. The objective of this pilot study was to explore perceptions about using online lifestyle counseling services among individuals living in rural settings in India. A pilot convenient sample of 100 individuals living in rural settings of Chennai with age 18 years and above was enrolled for the study. Information was gathered about socio-demographic characteristics, health behavior, current disease status; familiarity with technology and perceptions about online lifestyle counseling. The average age of the individuals was 34 years (SD=15). More than half of the individuals had access to computers at home and workplace. Individuals indentified various barriers for unable to obtain lifestyle counseling. Nearly 47% of the individuals were interested in obtaining online lifestyle counseling. There is an urgent need for evaluating the role of an online lifestyle counseling intervention among individuals living in rural settings. © 2014-IOS Press and the authors. Source

Joshi A.,University of Nebraska Medical Center | Puricelli Perin D.M.,University of Nebraska Medical Center | Arora M.,Foundation of Healthcare Technologies Society
Rural and Remote Health | Year: 2013

Introduction: Cancer, cardiovascular disease, chronic respiratory disease, and type 2 diabetes, are responsible for over 50% of worldwide mortality. Chronic diseases have broad negative impacts in developing countries. Contributing to the development of chronic diseases are sedentary lifestyles, poor nutrition and eating habits, and air pollution, among other risk factors. These are also greatly increasing, and obesity has become a global phenomenon. Health promotion, and chronic disease prevention and surveillance, can be achieved through information and communication technologies (ICT), which acquire, disseminate and store health-related information electronically. The portable health information kiosk (PHIK) can be a powerful tool for promoting health education in communities in both urban and rural settings. The objective of the study was to utilize a PHIK as a tool to assess the burden of chronic disease and associated risk factors in diverse settings in India. Methods: A convenience sample was enrolled from three diverse geographical locations including urban, rural and tribal to explore the utilization of a PHIK for chronic disease health risk assessment in a community setting. Cross-sectional data was recorded during the period of March-May 2010 in Rourkela and Bhubaneswar in the state of Orissa, India. Participants were asked to use a touch screen, electronic kiosk that gathered subjective and objective data to understand the burden of chronic diseases and associated risk in the community setting. The subjective data included responses to a series of multiple-choice questions and the objective data was gathered using multiple physiological sensors such as weight, blood sugar and blood pressure. Descriptive analysis was performed using univariate statistics with results for the continuous variables being reported as means and standard deviations while results for the categorical variables were reported as frequency statistics as appropriate. Results: A total of 429 participants aged 18 years and older were enrolled in three different community settings: urban, slum and tribal. Significant differences were seen in the systolic blood pressure of those living in the urban settings as compared with those living in either slum (p=0.04) or tribal settings (p=0.02). Significant differences in the blood sugar levels were seen only among those living in the tribal as compared with the urban settings (p=0.04). Results showed high prevalence of pre-hypertension, stages 1 and 2 hypertension among those living in the slum and tribal settings. Conclusions: The results show the presence of chronic diseases in tribal and slum communities. The assessment of chronic health conditions in these populations is insufficient. Poor infrastructure and lack of qualified personnel are challenges to providing a meaningful service, as low wages, poor living and working conditions are obstacles that prevent the trained workforce from establishing themselves in these areas of extreme need. Health kiosks can be a multifaceted solution, as they can be used to assess health outcomes in areas that normally are not covered due to lack of infrastructure or health personnel, to establish health education modules and inform the local population about them. They can support evidence-based decisions for national and regional programs and policies. © A Joshi, DM Puricelli Perin, M Arora, 2013. Source

Bhagavatheeswaran K.S.,Tamil University | Bhagavatheeswaran K.S.,Operations Research in Population Health | Kasav J.B.,Environment Health Researcher | Singh A.K.,Public Health Researcher | And 3 more authors.
Annals of Tropical Medicine and Public Health | Year: 2016

Background: Prevention of asthma exacerbations is one of the major challenges of public health. Parents are crucial for exacerbation prevention and management at home. This study was conducted with the objective of assessing asthma knowledge in the parents of asthmatic children and to understand parents' attitude and practices in dealing with the exacerbation of their children's asthma. Materials and Methods: A convenient sample of 100 parents of asthmatic children was enrolled. Any parents (mother or/and father) with a child aged 8 years and above, diagnosed with bronchial asthma, and attending the Outpatient Department of Paediatrics, Saveetha Medical College and Hospital with his/her child in the study period could be included. Results: In this study, 62% children were male and 38% female, the average age was 12.53 years [standard deviation (SD) 2.95], and the average time duration for living with an asthmatic condition was 6 years (SD 3). Of the parents, 80% responded that they did not know what inhaled corticosteroids were and most (86%) of them did not know how they worked, while 41% were aware of aerosol therapy. Of the respondents, 87% had never used a Children's Asthma Control Test questionnaire and 78% said that they did not have any written action plan in case of their child suffering an asthma attack. Conclusion: There is an urgent need for the preparation of parental guidelines for preventing asthma exacerbations among asthmatic children living in India. © 2016 Annals of Tropical Medicine and Public Health | Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow. Source

Brindha A.K.,Tamil University | Murthy S.,Foundation of Healthcare Technologies Society | Trout K.,Foundation of Healthcare Technologies Society | Singh A.K.,University of Nebraska Medical Center | And 2 more authors.
International Eye Science | Year: 2015

AIM: To perform the determination ofthe burden of dry eye syndrome among information technology (IT) professionals and examine association of dry eye syndrome between various daily activities. METHODS: This was a pilot cross-sectional study conducted for a period of 3 mo from October-December, 2013 in Chennai, South India. The study population was enrolled from three IT companies in a city in Chennai. The inclusion criteria consisted of individuals working in the IT industry at least for a period of 6 mo, aged 18y or above and giving voluntary, written informed consent. Variable information was gathered by using series of questionnaires and ophthalmic assessment. Information about sociodemographic characteristics was also gathered. Schirmer's test was performed for ophthalmic assessment. All of the analysis was performed by using SPSS vs. 16. RESULTS: About one fifth (n=36, 18%) of the participants were suspected to have dry eyes, with mean age of 29y (SD=7), and majority of them being males, graduates/postgraduates, single, living in extended families in urban areas. Windy environment significantly showed to aggravate redness (P=0.04) and burning sensation of the eyes (P=0.000). Similarly, watching television significantly showed to aggravate gritty sensation (P=0.01) and led to excess mucous in the eyes (P=0.02). CONCLUSION: Based on the results of our study, it can be concluded that the exposure to various daily activities such as watching television, using computer, reading, and use of air conditioning and windy environments (dry environments) were associated with signs and symptoms of dry eyes. Also, watching television and windy environment were significantly positively correlated with some of the signs of dry eye. This study emphasizes the urgent need of multi-factorial approach including policy measures for addressing the burden of dry eye in population. ©, 2015, International Journal of Ophthalmology (c/o Editorial Office). All right reserved. Source

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