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Papadopoulos D.P.,National and Kapodistrian University of Athens | Mourouzis I.,National and Kapodistrian University of Athens | Faselis C.,VAMC | Perrea D.,Laboratory of Experimental Surgery | Papademetriou V.,Georgetown University
Journal of Clinical Hypertension

Recent evidence demonstrates that masked hypertension (MH) is a significant predictor of cardiovascular disease, while apelin and relaxin are two novel factors with a significant role in vascular regulation. Apelin is an adipokine that elicits endothelium-dependent vasorelaxation and reduces arterial blood pressure, while relaxin is a protein hormone that induces the production of nitric oxide and vascular endothelial growth factor and inhibits endothelin and angiotensin II. This study aimed to investigate whether apelin and relaxin plasma levels are affected in patients with MH and compare the findings with those of healthy normotensives. One hundred-thirty (60 men, 70 women) healthy patients with a mean age of 45±12 years who had clinic blood pressure <140/90 mmHg were studied. The whole study population underwent 24-hour ambulatory blood pressure monitoring (ABPM). According to the ABPM recordings, 24 individuals (8 men, 16 women) had MH and the remaining 106 patients (52 men, 54 women) had normal ABPM recordings. Apelin and relaxin plasma levels were determined in both groups (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay method). The apelin (220±121 vs 315±147 pg/mL, P=.001) and relaxin (35.2±6.7 vs 56.8±13.6 pg/mL, P<.001) plasma levels were significantly lower in the masked hypertensive group compared with normotensive controls. Our findings suggest that patients with masked hypertension have significantly lower apelin and relaxin levels. This observation may have prognostic significance for future cardiovascular events in patients with MH and needs further investigation. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Source

This is a book review of Abdel-Khalek's (2005) Arabic Handbook on "Death and Dying." This review extrapolates the Islamic ontology presented in 492 pages covering 56 empirical and 304 empirical studies published by a host of Arab, American and European psychologists and psychiatrists. The Handbook presents an Islamic ontology on death anxiety for the first time to English readers. Freud's Judeo-Christian view of death anxiety is already familiar to readers of Omega. But the Islamic ontology of death is relatively unknown even though it is relevant. This reviewer finds the Islamic ontology of death to be similar to the Judeo-Christian one. Islam provides believers with assurance of God's mercy regardless of human vulnerability to evil. Death anxiety can be relieved by exercising moderation in relations with others. Quoting from the Qur'an, Abdel-Khalek (2005) makes the claim that there is a judicious path to follow between daily distress and achieving social goals. The Arabic term to describe this path is Surat-Mustakeem. It comes close to Aristotle's Eudaimona or happiness. Death Anxiety is neither negative nor positive in connotation. It is the ethical pursuit of a dialectic of truth and virtue. Death anxiety research shows a convergence between ontology and empirical research. © 2012, Baywood Publishing Co., Inc. Source

Lorber W.,Milwaukee Veterans Affairs Medical Center | Garcia H.A.,VAMC | Garcia H.A.,Health Science University

Traditional masculine socialization presents challenges in psychotherapy, for example, by decreasing the likelihood of help-seeking and by making emotion-laden content more difficult to address. While this has been established in civilian populations, more intense forms of masculine socialization found in military settings may amplify such issues in male veteran populations. Male veterans returning from and Afghanistan (OEF) and Iraq (OIF) exhibit strong traditional masculine socialization and generally present in a unique manner. It is posited that OEF/OIF male veterans' unique presentation is in large part because of an interaction between high degrees of endorsement of traditional masculine gender role norms, relative youth, recency of distressing events, and recent experience in the social context of the military where traditional masculinity is reinforced. The impact of these variables on the psychotherapeutic process for male OEF/OIF veterans is significant and likely adds to ambivalence about change and increases dropout from psychotherapy. Modifications of traditional psychotherapeutic approaches designed to address traditional masculine gender role norms and their many interactions with other variables are discussed. © 2010 American Psychological Association. Source

Asymmetric Doppler shifts in the Ives-Stilwell experiment are correctly predicted by the special theory of relativity. The same result can be obtained by changing the coordinate system. © 2015 Physics Essays Publication. Source

Bonta D.V.,VAMC | Bonta D.V.,Emory University | Wahl R.L.,Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions
Medical Physics

Purpose: The authors investigated the effects of iodinated contrast agents on the quantification of radioactivity obtained using a combined single photon emission tomography (SPECT) and high resolution 16 slice computed tomography (CT) scanner. Methods: Two conditions were evaluated: Contrast media mixed with radioisotope and the contrast media, and the radioisotope solution confined in adjacent but distinct volumes. Phantoms containing combinations of T 99m c, I 111 n, and I 131 solutions in normal saline and contrast solutions in normal saline corresponding to the two conditions were prepared and scanned. Images were reconstructed by iterative reconstruction (ordered subset expectation maximization), with and without CT-derived attenuation maps. The reconstructed counts encoded in the reconstructed images were compared. Results: Compared to normal saline, the presence of an iodinated contrast agent resulted in the underestimation of reconstructed counts in all nonattenuation corrected SPECT images. Compared to normal saline, the presence of a contrast agent resulted in the overestimation of reconstructed counts in all attenuation corrected SPECT images. The largest underestimation of reconstructed counts was 12.8% and the largest overestimation value was 35.9%. Conclusions: High concentrations of a contrast agent caused errors in the measurement of actual radiotracer reconstructed counts in phantoms. These errors could have important consequences for the use of oral and intravenous contrast in both diagnostic (qualitative) and dosimetric (quantitative) SPECT-CT imaging. The authors' findings suggest that noncontrast imaging or alternative contrast-specific attenuation correction approaches should be considered for optimal SPECT activity quantification. © 2010 American Association of Physicists in Medicine. Source

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