Anchor lead: Should sperm be collected from men after
they’ve died? Elizabeth Tracey reports

Posthumous sperm retrieval, where sperm is collected from a
man after his death, has been underway for decades. Now there’s a movement
afoot in the UK to do so without a man’s permission. Jeffrey Kahn, director of
the Berman Institute of Bioethics at Johns Hopkins, sounds an alarm.

Kahn: This has been an issue for a long time because it’s
technically not terribly difficult to obtain sperm from somebody after he’s
died. I would side with the principle that we should agree and adhere to a
standard where we don’t make men fathers without their permission. That means
if they haven’t said I want to be a sperm donor if they haven’t been specific
about that then the answer should be no, we don’t do that. I think we should
treat posthumous sperm collection like we do organ donation.  :29

Kahn notes that in some countries such as Spain, organs from
people who have died are retrieved unless they specifically opt out of
donation, but here in the US we remain in an opt-in environment, a situation he
doesn’t expect will change anytime soon. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth



Acute injury to the kidneys may occur in one in ten
hospitalized people, recent estimates show. Measuring a protein in the blood
known by the acronym SuPAR may help, according to a study in the New England
Journal of Medicine. Chirag Parikh, director of nephrology at Johns Hopkins,
says this is an area of active study.

Parikh: We and others are looking at several proteins that
show an inherent risk of kidney getting injured, when a patient gets exposed to
the healthcare environment. So at the time of cardiac surgery, some forms of
medication that are given, contrast procedures, so all of these are settings
where some people have weaker kidneys and if you can measure it, it would be
useful.  :25

Parikh says various strategies can be employed to reduce the
potential for acute kidney injury when people have surgery or are hospitalized,
and knowing who’s at risk can help target those interventions appropriately. At
Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.


Anchor lead: Can we head off sepsis with a simple
strategy? Elizabeth Tracey reports

Vitamin C, one of the B vitamins, and steroids. A simple
combination that seemed to help in one observational trial of people with
sepsis, that bodywide infection that is the number one cause of death, a recent
Lancet study states. Brian Garibaldi, a critical care medicine expert at Johns
Hopkins, says now that more rigorous studies are in, hopes have been dashed.

Garibaldi: Unfortunately when applied to a larger group of
patients that have sepsis it’s not been shown to have any benefit in terms of
mortality. There’s still are several studies that are ongoing with combinations
of vitamin C, with or without thiamine, with or without steroids, so it’s still
possible that some of these studies might show some benefit to this treatment
but I think seeing that the combination of vitamin C with thiamine and steroids
compared to just steroids alone did not lead to a difference in mortality I
think was disappointing.   :29

Garibaldi notes that awareness of sepsis and prompt
initiation of treatment are having an impact on the condition. At Johns
Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.


Anchor lead: Accurate testing for COVID-19 is essential,
Elizabeth Tracey reports

Rapid test kits for COVID-19 in the US distributed early
this year may have some flaws, recent reports indicate. Brian Garibaldi, a
critical care medicine expert at Johns Hopkins, says he’s convinced those
issues have been corrected.

Garibaldi: Rapid diagnosis is essential for identifying
cases, putting into place public health measures that we know work, doing
contact tracing, asking people to self-isolate, so being able to test more
rapidly and have a quicker turnaround time will really aid in our ability to
prevent spreading of this virus.  :15

Garibaldi offers a reality check relative to infection with

Garibaldi: We’re still in the middle of what has been a
particularly bad flu season and its much more likely that people will come into
contact with other people who have the flu. Things that you do to protect
yourself against colds and respiratory viruses in winter months, particularly
the flu, are going to protect you against this current virus.  :17

At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.


Anchor lead: How many people are actually infected with
COVID-19? Elizabeth Tracey reports

COVID-19 is spreading rapidly around the world, and no one
really knows how many people are infected. Brian Garibaldi, a critical care
medicine expert at Johns Hopkins, says that is both good and bad news.

Garibaldi: Early on in an outbreak it’s very likely that
we’re underestimating the number of cases that are out there because people who
are either asymptomatic or have low level infections and don’t have to seek
healthcare, we’re not capturing them and we’re not testing for that, so I think
the hope is that there’s actually many more asymptomatic or low level
infections and so the mortality is actually not going to be as high as we’re
seeing right now, and as we get more data that will become a little bit more
clear.   :25

The World Health Organization has released a fatality rate
of over 3% relative to COVID-19 infection, but says that was based on early
data from the outbreak in Wuhan. Now medical professionals around the globe are
learning how to manage the infection better, so that is likely a very high
estimate. The WHO reiterates that basic hygiene measures, especially
hand-washing, remain your best defense. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.

In this next podcast, we welcome our guest, the Nurse Scientist Heather Watson, Ph.D., RN. First, we discuss why statistics are important to nursing projects. We review how nurses should think about statistics and, possibly, approach statistics with a different approach. Next, we review various tools that can make statistical analysis easier. Finally, we share the fact that there are supportive resources that nurses can tap into in order to make statistical design a bit easier.
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In this next podcast, we review what the title and abstract screen is. First, we discuss why a title and abstract screen is important during an evidence-based practice (EBP) project. We review the process of what we do with the thousands of articles that we receive from a literature search. Next, we walk through how conducting a systematic title and abstract review is relevant for your team-based EBP project. Finally, we discuss the actual steps for the title and abstract screening process in an EBP project.
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