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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health, Volume 18, Issue 16 (August-2 2021) – 656 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Electronic waste (e-waste) is a serious global problem. E-waste not only contains valuable metals but also many dangerous chemicals. Furthermore, the extraction of the valuable metals is often conducted by methods that cause harmful exposure to workers and their children. In the past, much of the world’s e-waste was transported to China, but now the e-waste goes to developing countries in Africa that have less regulation and often welcome the waste because of its economic value. The methods used to extract valuable components are often dangerous, for example, by burning old tires to extract copper wire or by using acid extraction. The result is the generation of toxic smoke high in particulates and dioxins, with contamination of air, soil, water and food. This publication reviews the e-waste issues in Africa, including the risks from the extraction of e-waste as well as the economic [...] Read more.
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Article
Drinking Trajectories and Factors in Koreans
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8890; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168890 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 434
Abstract
This study aimed to explore the drinking culture in Korea by sex, age, household type, occupation, and income level to identify demographic groups with prominent drinking behaviors and factors affecting their drinking. Furthermore, we evaluated recent changes, including those due to COVID-19, in [...] Read more.
This study aimed to explore the drinking culture in Korea by sex, age, household type, occupation, and income level to identify demographic groups with prominent drinking behaviors and factors affecting their drinking. Furthermore, we evaluated recent changes, including those due to COVID-19, in drinking behavior, using data from the Korea Welfare Panel Study from 2010 to 2020. Panel analysis was performed to reveal the effects of material deprivation, depression, and sociodemographic factors on drinking behavior. We used the AUDIT 3 scale including frequency of drinking, average amount of drinking, and frequency of excessive drinking. The two characteristics of Korean drinking are consistent with the claim of the ecological system theory that humans, as social beings, drink to facilitate social communication or promote problematic drinking when social communication is difficult. Drinking among Koreans is characterized by a pattern that alternates between social drinking and problem drinking. Our study recognizes drinking as a social problem that should be managed at social as well as national levels. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Research on Alcohol Culture and Health Behavior)
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Article
Sleep Quality in Patients Undergoing Transcatheter Aortic Valve Implantation (TAVI)
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8889; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168889 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 454
Abstract
The present study aimed to analyze sleep quality and quality of Life (QoL) in patients undergoing Transcatheter Aortic Valve Implantation (TAVI). It was conducted at the Interventional Cardiology Unit of the Department of Cardiac, Thoracic, Vascular Sciences and Public Health of the University [...] Read more.
The present study aimed to analyze sleep quality and quality of Life (QoL) in patients undergoing Transcatheter Aortic Valve Implantation (TAVI). It was conducted at the Interventional Cardiology Unit of the Department of Cardiac, Thoracic, Vascular Sciences and Public Health of the University of Padova on 27 adult patients who underwent TAVI via the transfemoral approach. Patients completed two validated instruments, i.e., the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI) and the EuroQoL (EQ-5D-5L), on the day of discharge and one month after the hospital discharge. Twenty-seven patients were enrolled with a severe aortic stenosis diagnosis, treated with transfemoral TAVI procedure. The study population included seventeen poor sleepers and ten good sleepers with a median age of 81.92 years overall. The global PSQI evaluation revealed a small significant improvement at follow-up (p-value 0.007). Small positive changes were detected in the Self-care and Usual activity domains of the EQ-5D-5L and the EQ-VAS. No correlation was detected between EQ-5D-5L and sleep quality. The present study confirms the importance of sleep quality monitoring in patients who undergo TAVI procedure for aortic stenosis treatment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Impact of Sleep Health on Chronic Diseases)
Article
The Relationship between Energy Poverty and Individual Development: Exploring the Serial Mediating Effects of Learning Behavior and Health Condition
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8888; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168888 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 506
Abstract
Energy poverty has negative impacts on the residents’ life from various aspects. A comprehensive understanding of these impacts is the top priority in energy poverty governance. Previous qualitative studies have shown that energy poverty has the potential to negatively impact the individual development [...] Read more.
Energy poverty has negative impacts on the residents’ life from various aspects. A comprehensive understanding of these impacts is the top priority in energy poverty governance. Previous qualitative studies have shown that energy poverty has the potential to negatively impact the individual development of residents through multiple pathways. However, few scholars have explored this issue from a quantitative perspective. To fill the gaps in existing research, this study aims to examine the impact of energy poverty on individual development and explore the serial mediating effects of learning behavior and health condition in the relationship. A total of 2289 valid samples are obtained from the dataset of Chinese General Social Survey (CGSS). SPSS 26.0 and PROCESS 3.5 are used to conduct serial mediating effects analysis. The results show that energy poverty can significantly negatively impact the individual development of residents. Learning behavior and health condition are found to independently or serially mediate the relationship between energy poverty and individual development. Health condition has the stronger mediating effect, whereas the mediating effect of learning behavior is weaker. This study may contribute to a better understanding of the consequences of energy poverty in government and academia. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Environmental Health)
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Commentary
Investing in Public Health Infrastructure to Address the Complexities of Homelessness
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8887; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168887 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 627
Abstract
Homelessness is now recognized as a significant public health problem in North America and throughout advanced economies of the world. The causes of homelessness are complex but the lack of affordable housing, unemployment, poverty, addiction, and mental illness all contribute to the risk [...] Read more.
Homelessness is now recognized as a significant public health problem in North America and throughout advanced economies of the world. The causes of homelessness are complex but the lack of affordable housing, unemployment, poverty, addiction, and mental illness all contribute to the risk for homelessness. We argue that homelessness is increasingly exacerbated by system-wide infrastructure failures occurring at the municipal, state, and federal government levels and whose catastrophic impacts on population health and the response to the COVID-19 pandemic are the consequence of the decades-long devolution of government and neglect to invest in public infrastructure, including a modern public health system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Homelessness and Public Health)
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Article
Indoor Air Quality Evaluation Using Mechanical Ventilation and Portable Air Purifiers in an Academic Dentistry Clinic during the COVID-19 Pandemic in Greece
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8886; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168886 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 617
Abstract
The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), which is mainly transmitted through droplets without overlooking other sources of transmission, rendered attention on the air quality in indoor areas and more specifically in healthcare settings. The improvement of indoor air quality (IAQ) is ensured by frequent [...] Read more.
The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), which is mainly transmitted through droplets without overlooking other sources of transmission, rendered attention on the air quality in indoor areas and more specifically in healthcare settings. The improvement of indoor air quality (IAQ) is ensured by frequent changes of the air that must be carried out in healthcare areas and with assistance from special devices that undertake the filtration of the air and its purification through special filters and lamps. In this research, the performance of air purifiers is assessed in terms of the limitation of PM2.5, PM10, VOCs and CO2 in a postgraduate clinic of the Dentistry School of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens in parallel with mechanical ventilation. Our findings indicate that the use of mechanical ventilation plays a key role on the results, retaining good IAQ levels within the clinic and that air purifiers show a positive impact on IAQ by mainly reducing the levels of PM2.5 and secondly of TVOC. Full article
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Article
The Effects of Waste Cement on the Bioavailability, Mobility, and Leaching of Cadmium in Soil
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8885; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168885 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 508
Abstract
Waste cement is a construction and demolition waste produced from old buildings’ demolition and transformation. In recent years, the recycling of recycled concrete is limited to the use of recycled aggregate, and the research on the utilization of waste cement in waste concrete [...] Read more.
Waste cement is a construction and demolition waste produced from old buildings’ demolition and transformation. In recent years, the recycling of recycled concrete is limited to the use of recycled aggregate, and the research on the utilization of waste cement in waste concrete is scarce. This study explored the effective application of waste cement for the adsorption of cadmium (Cd2+) from an aqueous solution and the bioavailability and immobility of Cd2+ in soil. Results showed that the maximum adsorption capacities of ordinary Portland cement(OPC) paste, fly ash cement (FAC) paste, and zeolite cement (ZEC) paste for Cd2+ were calculated to be 10.97, 9.47, 4.63 mg·g−1, respectively. The possible mechanisms for Cd2+ adsorption in the solution by waste cement mainly involve precipitation by forming insoluble Cd2+ compounds in alkaline conditions, and ion exchange for Cd2+ with the exchangeable calcium ions in waste cement, which were confirmed by XRD and SEM. Results from diethylene triaminepentaacetic acid (DTPA) extraction and toxicity characteristic leaching procedure (TCLP) implied reduction of the Cd2+ mobility. DTPA-extractable Cd2+ decreased by 52, 48 and 46%, respectively, by adding 1% OPC, FAC and ZEC. TCLP-extractable Cd2+ decreased by 89.0, 80.3, and 56.0% after 1% OPC, FAC, and ZEC treatment, respectively. BCR analyses indicate that OPC, FAC, and ZEC applications increased the percentage of Cd2+ in residual fraction and induced a high reduction in the acid-soluble Cd2+ proportion. The leaching column test further confirmed a reduction in Cd2+ mobility by waste cement treated under continuous leaching of simulated acid rain (SAR). Therefore, waste cement exhibited a significant enhancement in the immobilization of Cd2+ under simulated acid rain (SAR) leaching. In summary, the application of alkaline waste cement could substantially remove Cd2+ from wastewater and reduce Cd2+ mobility and bioavailability in contaminated soil. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Application of Biochar for Soil Remediation)
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Article
Trends in the Use of Naltrexone for Addiction Treatment among Alcohol Use Disorder Admissions in U.S. Substance Use Treatment Facilities
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8884; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168884 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 680
Abstract
Background: Naltrexone, a medication for addiction treatment (MAT), is an FDA-approved medication recommended for the treatment of alcohol use disorder (AUD). Despite the high prevalence of AUD and efficacy of naltrexone, only a small percentage of individuals with AUD receive treatment. Objectives: To [...] Read more.
Background: Naltrexone, a medication for addiction treatment (MAT), is an FDA-approved medication recommended for the treatment of alcohol use disorder (AUD). Despite the high prevalence of AUD and efficacy of naltrexone, only a small percentage of individuals with AUD receive treatment. Objectives: To identify trends for the prescription of naltrexone in AUD admissions in substance use treatment centers across the U.S. Methods: Data from the 2000–2018 U.S. Treatment Episode Data Set: Admissions (TEDS-A) were used in temporal trend analysis of naltrexone prescription in admissions that only used alcohol. Data from the 2019 National Survey of Substance Abuse Treatment Services (N-SSATS) were also used to characterize medication use among AUD clients across different treatment service settings. Results: Treatment of AUD with naltrexone was 0.49% in 2000 and tripled from 0.53% in 2015 to 1.64% in 2018 in AUD admissions (p < 0.0001 for the Cochran–Armitage trend test). Women, middle-aged adults, and admissions for clients living in the Northeast U.S. were more likely to be prescribed naltrexone than their respective counterparts, as were admissions with prior treatment episodes and referrals through alcohol/drug use care providers, who paid for treatment primarily through private insurance, used alcohol daily in the month prior to admission, and waited 1–7 days to enter treatment. Naltrexone was more commonly prescribed by AUD admissions compared to acamprosate and disulfiram and was more frequently prescribed in residential and outpatient services as opposed to hospital inpatient services. Conclusions: Naltrexone remains underutilized for AUD, and factors that influence prescription of medication are multifaceted. This study may contribute to the creation of effective interventions aimed at reducing naltrexone disparities for AUD. Full article
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Article
Dental Fear and Associated Factors among Children and Adolescents: A School-Based Study in Lithuania
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8883; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168883 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 494
Abstract
Dental fear is a challenging problem in dentistry and many contributing factors have been identified. Although this problem among children and adolescents has been studied in the literature for a long time, few such studies have been conducted in Lithuania. This study aimed [...] Read more.
Dental fear is a challenging problem in dentistry and many contributing factors have been identified. Although this problem among children and adolescents has been studied in the literature for a long time, few such studies have been conducted in Lithuania. This study aimed to evaluate the prevalence of dental fear and examine its association with gender, age and several psychological and social factors among children and adolescents in Lithuania. The cross-sectional survey included a randomly selected sample (n = 1590) of children aged 11–14 and adolescents aged 15–18. The data were supplemented by interviewing the parents of these subjects (n = 1399). Dental fear was measured with a single five-score question. The data collection also included questions on oral health, socioeconomic status, oral health-related quality of life and self-esteem. Poisson regression analysis was used to assess the association between perception of dental fear and potential predictor variables. It was found that 32.2% (95% CI: 29.9–34.4%) of children and adolescents reported no fear of dental treatment, 12.5% (10.8–14.2%) of their peers were highly afraid of dental treatment, and other subjects assessed their dental fear gradually. Girls reported greater dental fear scores than boys, but the level of dental fear did not depend on the age. We identified the groups of subjects by gender and age, and a higher level of dental fear was significantly associated with untreated caries experience, a delay in the age of the subject’s first visit to the dentist, low self-esteem, low oral health-related quality of life, low overall life satisfaction and low family affluence. The results also suggested that dental fear could originate from previous toothache, dentists’ actions, high sensitivity in the child and poor psychological readiness for treatment. It was concluded that dental fear among Lithuanian children and adolescents is a common problem that is associated with gender and several dental, psychological and social factors. The findings indicate that school-based health policies, paediatric dentists and parents should be encouraged to focus on the psychosocial factors associated with dental fear because most of them can be prevented. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Oral Health)
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Article
Combination of Coagulation–Flocculation–Decantation and Ozonation Processes for Winery Wastewater Treatment
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8882; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168882 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 456
Abstract
This research assessed a novel treatment process of winery wastewater, through the application of a chemical-based process aiming to decrease the high organic carbon content, which represents a difficulty for wastewater treatment plants and a public health problem. Firstly, a coagulation–flocculation–decantation process (CFD [...] Read more.
This research assessed a novel treatment process of winery wastewater, through the application of a chemical-based process aiming to decrease the high organic carbon content, which represents a difficulty for wastewater treatment plants and a public health problem. Firstly, a coagulation–flocculation–decantation process (CFD process) was optimized by a simplex lattice design. Afterwards, the efficiency of a UV-C/ferrous iron/ozone system was assessed for organic carbon removal in winery wastewater. This system was applied alone and in combination with the CFD process (as a pre- and post-treatment). The coagulation–flocculation–decantation process, with a mixture of 0.48 g/L potassium caseinate and 0.52 g/L bentonite at pH 4.0, achieved 98.3, 97.6, and 87.8% removals of turbidity, total suspended solids, and total polyphenols, respectively. For the ozonation process, the required pH and ferrous iron concentration (Fe2+) were crucial variables in treatment optimization. With the application of the best operational conditions (pH = 4.0, [Fe2+] = 1.0 mM), the UV-C/ferrous iron/ozone system achieved 63.2% total organic carbon (TOC) removal and an energy consumption of 1843 kWh∙m−3∙order−1. The combination of CFD and ozonation processes increased the TOC removal to 66.1 and 65.5%, respectively, for the ozone/ferrous iron/UV-C/CFD and CFD/ozone/ferrous iron/UV-C systems. In addition, the germination index of several seeds was assessed and excellent values (>80%) were observed, which revealed the reduction in phytotoxicity. In conclusion, the combination of CFD and UV-C/ferrous iron/ozone processes is efficient for WW treatment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Environmental Science and Engineering)
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Article
Bioaccumulation of Macronutrients in Edible Mushrooms in Various Habitat Conditions of NW Poland—Role in the Human Diet
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8881; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168881 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 437
Abstract
Recently, the interest in mushroom consumption has been growing, since their taste and low calorific value are appreciated, but also due to their nutritional value. In determining the usefulness of mushrooms in the human diet, it is important to consider the conditions of [...] Read more.
Recently, the interest in mushroom consumption has been growing, since their taste and low calorific value are appreciated, but also due to their nutritional value. In determining the usefulness of mushrooms in the human diet, it is important to consider the conditions of their occurrence to perform the assessment of bioaccumulation of minerals. The aim of the study was: (a) to determine the content of selected macronutrients (P, K, Ca, Mg, Na) in fruiting bodies of Boletus edulis, Imleria badia, Leccinum scabrum and the soils, (b) to determine their bioaccumulation potential taking into account the habitat conditions, and (c) an attempt to estimate their role in covering the requirement for macronutrients of the human organism. The research material was obtained in the NW of Poland: Uznam and Wolin, the Drawa Plain and the Ińsko Lakeland. In the soil, we determined the content of organic matter, pH, salinity and the content of absorbable and general forms of macronutrients. The content of macronutrients in mushrooms was also determined. Chemical analyses were performed using the generally accepted test methods. The study showed that in NW Poland, B. edulis grew on the acidic soils of Arenosols, and I. badia and L. scabrum grew on Podzols. The uptake of K, Mg and Ca by the tested mushrooms was positively, and P and Na negatively correlated with the content of these elements in the soil. The acidity of the soil affected the uptake of K and Mg by mushrooms. There was no effect of the amount of organic matter in the soil noticed on the content of macronutrients (except sodium) in mushrooms. Among the studied macronutrients, none of the mushrooms accumulated Ca, while P and K were generally accumulated in the highest amounts, regardless of the species. Each of the other elements was usually accumulated at a similar level in the fruiting bodies of the species we studied. The exception was I. badia, which accumulated higher amounts of Mg compared to B. edulis and L. scabrum. Mushrooms can enrich the diet with some macronutrients, especially in P and K. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environment–Macromycetes (Fungi)–Edible Fungi)
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Article
Attention Bias and Recognition of Sexual Images in Depression
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8880; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168880 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 402
Abstract
Depression greatly affects sexuality. Theoretical and empirical evidence account for the existence of attention bias to sex-related stimuli. This attention bias might be impaired in depression, resulting in sexual problems. A sample of 13 patients with depression and 13 matched healthy controls were [...] Read more.
Depression greatly affects sexuality. Theoretical and empirical evidence account for the existence of attention bias to sex-related stimuli. This attention bias might be impaired in depression, resulting in sexual problems. A sample of 13 patients with depression and 13 matched healthy controls were tested using the dot-probe and picture recognition task to measure attention to erotic images. No difference in attention to sex-related stimuli (ω2 = 0, p = 0.22) and in memory bias (ω2 = 0, p = 0.72) was found between the two groups. Explorative analyses were conducted to identify the sexual content-induced delay effect in the data, assess variability differences, and compare trial-level bias score-based indexes between groups. Across all analyses, there was little evidence for depression affecting sexual-related cognitive processing, and even this might be explained by other means. Our results suggest that restrained attention is probably not the main factor behind sexual problems in depression. Full article
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Article
Spatiotemporal Change and the Natural–Human Driving Processes of a Megacity’s Coastal Blue Carbon Storage
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8879; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168879 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 460
Abstract
Coastal blue carbon storage (CBCS) plays a key role in addressing global climate change and realizing regional carbon neutrality. Although blue carbon has been studied for some years, there is little understanding of the influence of a megacity’s complex natural and human-driven processes [...] Read more.
Coastal blue carbon storage (CBCS) plays a key role in addressing global climate change and realizing regional carbon neutrality. Although blue carbon has been studied for some years, there is little understanding of the influence of a megacity’s complex natural and human-driven processes on CBCS. Taking the Shanghai coastal area as an example, this study investigated the spatiotemporal change in CBCS using the InVEST (Integrated Valuation of Ecosystem Services and Tradeoffs) model during 1990–2015, and analyzed the response of the CBCS to a megacity’s complex natural- and human-driven processes through a land use/land cover transition matrix and hierarchical clustering. The results were as follows: (1) Thirty-three driving processes were identified in the study area, including four natural processes (e.g., accretion, succession, erosion, etc.), two human processes (reclamation and restoration) and twenty-seven natural–human coupled processes; they were further combined into single and multiple processes with positive and negative influences on the CBCS into four types (Mono+, Mono−, Multiple+ and Multiple− driving processes). (2) Shanghai’s CBCS increased from 1659.44 × 104 Mg to 1789.78 ×104 Mg, though the amount of Shanghai’s coastal carbon sequestration showed a decreasing trend in three periods: 51.28 × 104 Mg in 1990–2000, 42.90 × 104 Mg in 2000–2009 and 36.15 × 104 Mg in 2009–2015, respectively. (3) There were three kinds of spatiotemporal patterns in the CBCS of this study area: high adjacent to the territorial land, low adjacent to the offshore waters in 1990; high in the central part, low in the peripheral areas in 2009 and 2015; and a mixed pattern in 2000. These patterns resulted from the different driving processes present in the different years. This study could serve as a blueprint for restoring and maintaining the CBCS of a megacity, to help mitigate the conflicts between socioeconomic development and the conservation of the CBCS, especially in the Shanghai coastal area. Full article
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Article
The Anaerobic Power Assessment in CrossFit® Athletes: An Agreement Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8878; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168878 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 585
Abstract
Anaerobic power and capacity are considered determinants of performance and are usually assessed in athletes as a part of their physical capacities’ evaluation along the season. For that purpose, many field tests have been created. The main objective of this study was to [...] Read more.
Anaerobic power and capacity are considered determinants of performance and are usually assessed in athletes as a part of their physical capacities’ evaluation along the season. For that purpose, many field tests have been created. The main objective of this study was to analyze the agreement between four field tests and a laboratory test. Nineteen CrossFit® (CF) athletes were recruited for this study (28.63 ± 6.62 years) who had been practicing CF for at least one year. Tests performed were: (1) Anaerobic Squat Test at 60% of bodyweight (AST60); (2) Anaerobic Squat Test at 70% of bodyweight (AST70); (3) Repeated Jump Test (RJT); (4) Assault Bike Test (ABT); and (5) Wingate Anaerobic Test on a cycle ergometer (WG). All tests consisted of 30 s of max effort. The differences among methods were tested using a repeated-measures analysis of variance (ANOVA) and effect size. Agreement between methods was performed using Bland–Altman analysis. Analysis of agreement showed systematic bias in all field test PP values, which varied between −110.05 (AST60PP—WGPP) and 463.58 (ABTPP—WGPP), and a significant proportional error in ABTPP by rank correlation (p < 0.001). Repeated-measures ANOVA showed significant differences among PP values (F(1.76,31.59) = 130.61, p =< 0.001). In conclusion, since to our knowledge, this is the first study to analyze the agreement between various methods to estimate anaerobic power in CF athletes. Apart from ABT, all tests showed good agreement and can be used interchangeably in CF athletes. Our results suggest that AST and RJT are good alternatives for measuring the anaerobic power in CF athletes when access to a laboratory is not possible. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness)
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Article
Electronic Games, Television, and Psychological Wellbeing of Adolescents: Mediating Role of Sleep and Physical Activity
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8877; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168877 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 782
Abstract
This study investigated the associations between two common recreational screen activities and the psychological wellbeing of adolescents, and whether this association was mediated by sleep duration or physical activity frequency. This study used nationally representative cross-sectional survey data from 2946 adolescents (mean age [...] Read more.
This study investigated the associations between two common recreational screen activities and the psychological wellbeing of adolescents, and whether this association was mediated by sleep duration or physical activity frequency. This study used nationally representative cross-sectional survey data from 2946 adolescents (mean age 16.9 [0.38] years; 49% female) in the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children (LSAC). Adolescents provided information on daily time spent for each of the following: playing electronic games and watching television, time of sleep onset and wakeup, and number of days/week doing ≥60 min/day of physical activity. Psychological wellbeing was assessed by the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ). Generalized estimating equations were used to examine the associations, and a contemporary multiple mediation analysis was used to examine the mediation effects. One fifth (20%) of adolescents were categorized as having poor wellbeing (SDQ total ≥17) with a significant sex difference (males: 16%; females: 24%; p < 0.001). Playing electronic games was inversely associated with psychological wellbeing for both male and female adolescents (p < 0.001). Watching television was inversely associated with psychological wellbeing for female adolescents (p < 0.001). Sleep duration and physical activity frequency were found to partially mediate the relationships between playing electronic games and the psychological wellbeing of male and female adolescents. Physical activity frequency partially mediated the association between television watching and wellbeing among female adolescents. Longitudinal studies are required to determine the causal pathway between screen-based activities and the wellbeing of adolescents, and to inform intervention strategies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Screen-Time and Health in Children and Adolescents)
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Article
Using the Reflective Journal to Improve Practical Skills Integrating Affective and Self-Critical Aspects in Impoverished International Environments. A Pilot Test
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8876; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168876 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 494
Abstract
The reflective practice journal is a teaching methodology that facilitates the acquisition of professional, attitudinal values and skills, affording comprehensive training by reflecting on experiences that have been lived and showing feelings that, a priori, would be hidden. Our aim was to implement [...] Read more.
The reflective practice journal is a teaching methodology that facilitates the acquisition of professional, attitudinal values and skills, affording comprehensive training by reflecting on experiences that have been lived and showing feelings that, a priori, would be hidden. Our aim was to implement it in the international practicum in impoverished environments as a facilitating instrument of meaningful learning and the acquisition of professional skills, integrating affective and self-critical aspects. The project was developed with Nursing students at Catholic University of Valencia, in an impoverished environment. Qualitative reflections increased, highlighting humanity, closeness and attention focused on health promotion. The quality of the experience was 9.46/10. The mean score in self-criticism and expression was 4.57/5, and the self-evaluation of the acquisition of skills was 9.55/10. The double-blind peer evaluation of the performance of their practices in the international context was 9.68/10. The trust of the students with the teachers was evaluated as 10/10. The reflective practice journal facilitated the progression of learning, self-criticism, and the acquisition of values such as hospitality, the quality of care offered, and respect for customs and beliefs, as well as responsibility in the distribution of available resources and interventions. Full article
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Article
Development of a Human Estrogen Receptor Dimerization Assay for the Estrogenic Endocrine-Disrupting Chemicals Using Bioluminescence Resonance Energy Transfer
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8875; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168875 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 504
Abstract
Endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) are found in food and various other substances, including pesticides and plastics. EDCs are easily absorbed into the body and have the ability to mimic or block hormone function. The radioligand binding assay based on the estrogen receptors binding affinity [...] Read more.
Endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) are found in food and various other substances, including pesticides and plastics. EDCs are easily absorbed into the body and have the ability to mimic or block hormone function. The radioligand binding assay based on the estrogen receptors binding affinity is widely used to detect estrogenic EDCs but is limited to radioactive substances and requires specific conditions. As an alternative, we developed a human cell-based dimerization assay for detecting EDC-mediated ER-alpha (ERα) dimerization using bioluminescence resonance energy transfer (BRET). The resultant novel BRET-based on the ERα dimerization assay was used to identify the binding affinity of 17β-estradiol (E2), 17α-estradiol, corticosterone, diethylhexyl phthalate, bisphenol A, and 4-nonylphenol with ERα by measuring the corresponding BRET signals. Consequently, the BRET signals from five chemicals except corticosterone showed a dose-dependent sigmoidal curve for ERα, and these chemicals were suggested as positive chemicals for ERα. In contrast, corticosterone, which induced a BRET signal comparable to that of the vehicle control, was suggested as a negative chemical for ERα. Therefore, these results were consistent with the results of the existing binding assay for ERα and suggested that a novel BRET system can provide information about EDCs-mediated dimerization to ERα. Full article
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Article
Advancing Our Understanding of Dental Care Pathways of Refugees and Asylum Seekers in Canada: A Qualitative Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8874; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168874 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 607
Abstract
The burden of oral diseases and need for dental care are high among refugees and asylum seekers (humanitarian migrants). Canada’s Interim Federal Health Program (IFHP) provides humanitarian migrants with limited dental services; however, this program has seen several fluctuations over the past decade. [...] Read more.
The burden of oral diseases and need for dental care are high among refugees and asylum seekers (humanitarian migrants). Canada’s Interim Federal Health Program (IFHP) provides humanitarian migrants with limited dental services; however, this program has seen several fluctuations over the past decade. An earlier study on the experiences of humanitarian migrants in Quebec, Canada, developed the dental care pathways of humanitarian migrants model, which describes the care-seeking processes that humanitarian migrants follow; further, this study documented shortfalls in IFHP coverage. The current qualitative study tests the pathway model in another Canadian province. We purposefully recruited 27 humanitarian migrants from 13 countries in four global regions, between April and December 2019, in two Ontario cities (Toronto and Ottawa). Four focus group discussions were facilitated in English, Arabic, Spanish, and Dari. Analysis revealed barriers to care similar to the Quebec study: Waiting time, financial, and language barriers. Further, participants were unsatisfied with the IFHP’s benefits package. Our data produced two new pathways for the model: transnational dental care and self-medication. In conclusion, the dental care needs of humanitarian migrants are not currently being met in Canada, forcing participants to resort to alternative pathways outside the conventional dental care system. Full article
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Review
An Integrative Review of Recovery Services to Improve the Lives of Adults Living with Severe Mental Illness
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8873; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168873 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 500
Abstract
There is an increasing call for recovery-oriented services but few reviews have been undertaken regarding such interventions. This review aims to synthesize evidence on recovery services to improve the lives of adults living with severe mental illness. An integrative review methodology was used. [...] Read more.
There is an increasing call for recovery-oriented services but few reviews have been undertaken regarding such interventions. This review aims to synthesize evidence on recovery services to improve the lives of adults living with severe mental illness. An integrative review methodology was used. We searched published literature from seven databases: Medline, EMBASE, PsycINFO, CINAHL, Google Scholar, Web of Science, and Scopus. Mixed-methods synthesis was used to analyse the data. Out of 40 included papers, 62.5% (25/40) used quantitative data, 32.5% used qualitative and 5% (2/40) used mixed methods. The participants in the included papers were mostly adults with schizophrenia and schizoaffective disorder. This review identified three recovery-oriented services—integrated recovery services, individual placement services and recovery narrative photovoice and art making. The recovery-oriented services are effective in areas such as medication and treatment adherence, improving functionality, symptoms reduction, physical health and social behaviour, self-efficacy, economic empowerment, social inclusion and household integration. We conclude that mental health professionals are encouraged to implement the identified recovery services to improve the recovery goals of consumers. Full article
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Article
The Impact of Physical Performance on Functional Movement Screen Scores and Asymmetries in Female University Physical Education Students
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8872; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168872 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 465
Abstract
Association between physical performance and movement quality remains ambiguous. However, both affect injury risk. Furthermore, existing research rarely regards women. Therefore, this study aimed to assess the impact of physical performance components on FMS scores and asymmetries among young women—University Physical Education Students. [...] Read more.
Association between physical performance and movement quality remains ambiguous. However, both affect injury risk. Furthermore, existing research rarely regards women. Therefore, this study aimed to assess the impact of physical performance components on FMS scores and asymmetries among young women—University Physical Education Students. The study sample was 101 women, 21.72 ± 1.57 years, body mass index 21.52 ± 2.49 [kg/m2]. The FMS test was conducted to assess the movement patterns quality. Physical performance tests were done to evaluate strength, power, flexibility. Flexibility has the strongest correlation with FMS overall (r = 0.25, p = 0.0130) and single tasks scores. A higher level of flexibility and strength of abdominal muscles are associated with fewer asymmetries (r = −0.31, p = 0.0018; r = −0.27, p = 0.0057, respectively). However, the main findings determine that flexibility has the strongest and statistically significant impact on FMS overall (ß = 0.25, p = 0.0106) and asymmetries (ß = −0.30, p = 0.0014). Additionally, a significant effect of abdominal muscles strength on FMS asymmetries were observed (ß = −0.29, p = 0.0027). Flexibility and abdominal muscles strength have the most decisive impact on movement patterns quality. These results suggest possibilities for shaping FMS scores in young women. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Women in Sports and Exercise: From Health to Sports Performance)
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Article
Changes in Clinical Characteristics and Outcomes of Patients Admitted to Inpatient Cardiac Rehabilitation
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8871; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168871 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 493
Abstract
Aims: Cardiac rehabilitation (CR) has proven to be effective and beneficial in middle-aged and older patients. However, solid data in large cohorts of elderly individuals are yet to be explored. This retrospective study investigated the general characteristics, outcomes, and the level of response [...] Read more.
Aims: Cardiac rehabilitation (CR) has proven to be effective and beneficial in middle-aged and older patients. However, solid data in large cohorts of elderly individuals are yet to be explored. This retrospective study investigated the general characteristics, outcomes, and the level of response of patients referred to CR over 13 consecutive years. Methods: We reviewed the medical records of patients admitted to Villa Pineta Rehabilitation Hospital for exercise-based CR from 2006 to 2018. The patients’ baseline characteristics and changes following CR in an upper-limb weightlifting test (ULW), 30-s sit-to-stand test (30STS), and the 6-min walking test (6MWT) with associated Borg-related dyspnea (D) and fatigue (F) were collected. We also calculated the number of individuals that reached the minimal clinically relevant change (MCRC) following CR for each outcome. Results: One thousand five hundred and fifty-one patients (70.2 ± 9.7 years, 66% men) with complete datasets were included in the analysis. Coronary artery bypass graft and cardiac valve replacement surgery were the most frequent surgical procedures leading to CR referral (41.1% and 35.8%, respectively). The patients’ age (p = 0.03), number of total comorbidities (p < 0.0001), and post-surgical complications (p = 0.02) significantly increased over time. In contrast, the average absolute changes in ULW, 30STS, and 6MWT with associated D and F, and the proportion of patients that reached their respective MCRC, remained constant over the same period. Conclusion: The patients admitted to exercise-based CR were older and had more comorbidities and complications over time. The outcomes, however, were not influenced in terms of the absolute change or clinically meaningful response. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Physical Therapy in Geriatrics)
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Article
The Significance of Occupants’ Interaction with Their Environment on Reducing Cooling Loads and Dermatological Distresses in East Mediterranean Climates
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8870; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168870 - 23 Aug 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 460
Abstract
Global endeavors to respond to the problems caused by climate change and are leading to higher temperatures inside homes, which can cause skin conditions (such as eczema), lethargy, and poor concentration; disturbed sleep and fatigue are also rising. The energy performance of buildings [...] Read more.
Global endeavors to respond to the problems caused by climate change and are leading to higher temperatures inside homes, which can cause skin conditions (such as eczema), lethargy, and poor concentration; disturbed sleep and fatigue are also rising. The energy performance of buildings is influenced by interactions and associations of numerous different variables, such as the envelope specifications as well as the design, technologies, apparatuses, and occupant behaviours. This paper introduces simple and sustainable strategies that are not dependent on expensive or sophisticated technologies, as they rely only on the actions practiced by the building’s occupants (movable window shading, and nighttime natural ventilation) instead of completely relying on high-cost mechanical cooling systems in buildings located in the main Eastern Mediterranean climates represented in the country of Jordan. These low-energy solutions could be applied to low-income houses in hot areas to avoid health problems, such as dermatological diseases, and save a significant amount of energy. The final results indicate that window shading has significant potential in reducing the cooling load in different climate zones. Natural ventilation exhibits high energy-saving abilities in climates that have cool nights, whereas its abilities in hot climates where nights are moderate is limited. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health Environment and Sustainable Development)
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Article
Relationship between Running Spatiotemporal Kinematics and Muscle Performance in Well-Trained Youth Female Athletes. A Cross-Sectional Study
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8869; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168869 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 625
Abstract
The purpose of this cross-sectional study was to analyse the relationship of neuromuscular performance and spatiotemporal parameters in 18 adolescent distance athletes (age, 15.5 ± 1.1 years). Using the OptoGait system, the power, rhythm, reactive strength index, jump flying time, and jump height [...] Read more.
The purpose of this cross-sectional study was to analyse the relationship of neuromuscular performance and spatiotemporal parameters in 18 adolescent distance athletes (age, 15.5 ± 1.1 years). Using the OptoGait system, the power, rhythm, reactive strength index, jump flying time, and jump height of the squat jump, countermovement jump, and eight maximal hoppings test (HT8max) and the contact time (CT), flying time (FT), step frequency, stride angle, and step length of running at different speeds were measured. Maturity offset was determined based on anthropometric variables. Analysis of variance (ANOVA) of repeated measurements showed a reduction in CT (p < 0.000) and an increase in step frequency, step length, and stride angle (p < 0.001), as the velocity increased. The HT8max test showed significant correlations with very large effect sizes between neuromuscular performance variables (reactive strength index, power, jump flying time, jump height, and rhythm) and both step frequency and step length. Multiple linear regression found this relationship after adjusting spatiotemporal parameters with neuromuscular performance variables. Some variables of neuromuscular performance, mainly in reactive tests, were the predictors of spatiotemporal parameters (CT, FT, stride angle, and VO). Rhythm and jump flying time in the HT8max test and power in the countermovement jump test are parameters that can predict variables associated with running biomechanics, such as VO, CT, FT, and stride angle. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Motor Competence in Children and Adolescents)
Review
The Height of Children and Adolescents in Colombia. A Review of More than Sixty Years of Anthropometric Studies, 1957–2020
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8868; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168868 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 498
Abstract
In this article, we present a review of the studies on the heights of children and teenagers in Colombia published since 1957. We focus on examining the geographic coverage, features of the population studied, height measurement techniques, authors’ profiles, and growth patterns in [...] Read more.
In this article, we present a review of the studies on the heights of children and teenagers in Colombia published since 1957. We focus on examining the geographic coverage, features of the population studied, height measurement techniques, authors’ profiles, and growth patterns in children. This relatively recent literature has been developed mainly by medical doctors who carried out rigorous measurements with highly specific time and space horizons. The first studies emphasized the differences among socioeconomic levels. Later, there was an interest in minority groups, such as indigenous people and Afro-descendants. Although most of the research lacked long-term vision, the overall balance shows that the country has been improving in anthropometric indicators over time, across territories, and in different socioeconomic groups. Full article
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Article
Preschoolers’ and Mothers Dietary Practices and Compliance with the 24-h Movement Guidelines: Results of Oman’s National Nutrition Survey
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8867; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168867 - 23 Aug 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 572
Abstract
Introduction: Little is known on the nutritional and lifestyle variables of preschool children in Oman. This study analyzed data of the 2017 Oman National Nutrition Survey to assess the prevalence and interrelationships between dietary and movement variables among preschool children, aged 2–5 years. [...] Read more.
Introduction: Little is known on the nutritional and lifestyle variables of preschool children in Oman. This study analyzed data of the 2017 Oman National Nutrition Survey to assess the prevalence and interrelationships between dietary and movement variables among preschool children, aged 2–5 years. Methods: Household visits of a nationally representative sample evaluated mothers and children’s dietary, sleep and physical activity practices; media exposure; and anthropometric and sociodemographic variables. Results: Dyads of mothers and pre-school children aged 2–5 years (n = 1771) were assessed. Childhood overweight/obesity was prevalent in 2% of the sample. Over 54% of children consumed sweetened items and/or French fries or chips at least once daily. Over 65% of children had fruits and/or vegetables once daily or less. Mothers had healthier dietary and movement habits compared to their offspring. Compliance with media exposure was the lowest among mothers and children. Multivariate regression revealed children’s increased sweet intake was the only significant predictor of excess weight in children. Conclusion: This study revealed a low prevalence of overweight/obesity among preschool children in Oman. Children had an acceptable compliance with sleeping recommendations, yet limited adherence to media exposure, activity, added sugar and fruits and vegetables guidelines. Full article
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Article
The Influences of Community-Enriched Environment on the Cognitive Trajectories of Elderly People
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8866; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168866 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 395
Abstract
To examine the influences of community-enriched environment on the cognitive trajectories of the elderly in China, using panel data of 10,057, 3994, 2387, and 1749 older persons aged 65–104 years of the 2005, 2008, 2011, and 2014 waves from the Chinese Longitudinal Health [...] Read more.
To examine the influences of community-enriched environment on the cognitive trajectories of the elderly in China, using panel data of 10,057, 3994, 2387, and 1749 older persons aged 65–104 years of the 2005, 2008, 2011, and 2014 waves from the Chinese Longitudinal Health Longevity Survey (CLHLS) and a growth curve model, the authors analyzed the changing trend of elderly people’s cognitive abilities with age. The influences of community-enriched environments on cognitive abilities were also investigated. Results show that when all the factors are out of consideration except age, for an older person aged 82.5 years, as he/she grows one year older, his/her cognitive abilities will be reduced by 0.139 points, while for one aged 92.5 years, they will be reduced by 0.199 points, which means cognitive abilities decline rapidly as the individuals grow older. The elderly people from communities with enriched environments have higher cognitive levels and slower declining speeds of cognitive abilities than the other elderly people, proving the long-term ability of such environments to facilitate cognitive abilities. An increase in the stimulation of the enriched environment is needed to prevent or slow down the degeneration of cognitive abilities. Full article
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Article
Comparison of Aerobic Capacity Changes as a Result of a Polarized or Block Training Program among Trained Mountain Bike Cyclists
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8865; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168865 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 498
Abstract
This study compared the effectiveness of a block training program and a polarized training program in developing aerobic capacity in twenty trained mountain bike cyclists. The cyclists were divided into two groups: the block training program group (BT) and the polarized training program [...] Read more.
This study compared the effectiveness of a block training program and a polarized training program in developing aerobic capacity in twenty trained mountain bike cyclists. The cyclists were divided into two groups: the block training program group (BT) and the polarized training program group (PT). The experiment lasted 8 weeks. During the experiment, the BT group alternated between 17-day blocks consisting of dominant low-intensity training (LIT) and 11-day blocks consisting of sprint interval training (SIT), and high-intensity interval training (HIIT), while the PT group performed SIT, HIIT, and LIT simultaneously. Before and after the experiment, the cyclists performed incremental tests during which maximal oxygen uptake (VO2max), maximal aerobic power (Pmax), power achieved at the first ventilatory threshold (PVT1), and at the second ventilatory threshold (PVT2) were measured. VO2max increased in BT group (from 3.75 ± 0.67 to 4.00 ± 0.75 L∙min−1) and PT group (from 3.66 ± 0.73 to 4.20 ± 0.89 L∙min−1). In addition, Pmax, PVT1, and PVT2 increased in both groups to a similar extent. In conclusion, the polarized training program was more effective in developing the VO2max compared to the block program. In terms of developing other parameters characterizing the cyclists’ aerobic capacity, the block and polarized program induced similar results. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Exercise and Health)
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Article
Trends and Patterns of Knee Osteoarthritis in China: A Longitudinal Study of 17.7 Million Adults from 2008 to 2017
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8864; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168864 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 429
Abstract
Background: Knee osteoarthritis (KOA) provides many challenges on the healthcare system. However, few studies have reported the epidemiology, particularly in a large population. Our study aimed to estimate the prevalence, incidence, trends, and patterns of diagnosed KOA in China. Methods: This was a [...] Read more.
Background: Knee osteoarthritis (KOA) provides many challenges on the healthcare system. However, few studies have reported the epidemiology, particularly in a large population. Our study aimed to estimate the prevalence, incidence, trends, and patterns of diagnosed KOA in China. Methods: This was a longitudinal study. We used health insurance claims of 17.7 million adults from 2008–2017 to identify people with KOA. Trends in prevalence and incidence were analyzed using joinpoint regression. Results: We identified 2,447,990 people with KOA in Beijing, 60% of which were women. The 10-year average age-standardized prevalence and incidence of KOA was, respectively, 4.6% and 25.2 per 1000 person-years. Prevalence increased with age, surging after 55 years old. The average crude prevalence was 13.2% for people over 55 years old. The prevalence showed an increasing trend from 2008 to 2017, including a period of rapid rise from 2008 to 2011 (p < 0.05); the increase in prevalence was greatest in people under 35 years old (p < 0.05). Conclusion: Our analyses showed that the annual prevalence rate of KOA increased significantly from 2008 to 2017 in China. We need to increase our attention to women and the elderly over 55 years old, and also be alert to the younger trend of incidence of KOA. Full article
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Article
Access to Water and Sanitation Infrastructures for Primary Schoolchildren in the South-Central Part of Côte d’Ivoire
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8863; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168863 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 392
Abstract
In rural settings of Côte d’Ivoire, access to water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) at schools is often lacking. The purpose of this study was to assess the availability, quality, and use of WASH infrastructure in schools in the south-central part of Côte d’Ivoire, [...] Read more.
In rural settings of Côte d’Ivoire, access to water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) at schools is often lacking. The purpose of this study was to assess the availability, quality, and use of WASH infrastructure in schools in the south-central part of Côte d’Ivoire, and to determine the hygiene practices of schoolchildren. A cross-sectional study was conducted in 20 primary schools with (n = 10) or without (n = 10) direct access to drinking water. The survey was comprised of a questionnaire directed at schoolchildren aged 8–17 years, an assessment of the WASH infrastructure, and the testing of drinking water samples for Escherichia coli and total coliforms. Overall, 771 schoolchildren were enrolled in the study. One out of four children (24.9%) reported that they used available toilets. Among those children not using toilets, more than half (57.5%) reported that they practised open defecation. Drinking water infrastructure was limited in most schools because of poor storage tanks, the low flow of water, or broken wells. All drinking water samples (n = 18) tested positive for total coliforms and 15 (83.3%) tested positive for E. coli. The lack of WASH infrastructures in primary schools in the south-central part of Côte d’Ivoire, in combination with poor hygiene practices, might govern disease transmission and absenteeism at school, especially among females. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Emerging Solutions for Water, Sanitation and Hygiene)
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Article
Salmonella enterica Serovar Enteritidis Control in Poultry Litter Mediated by Lytic Bacteriophage Isolated from Swine Manure
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8862; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168862 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 441
Abstract
We report the use of bacteriophages for control of Salmonella Enteritidis in poultry production. Phage was isolated by the double-agar plate assay from agricultural waste samples, and one isolate, named SM1, was selected and propagated for application in poultry litter. Two experimental protocols [...] Read more.
We report the use of bacteriophages for control of Salmonella Enteritidis in poultry production. Phage was isolated by the double-agar plate assay from agricultural waste samples, and one isolate, named SM1, was selected and propagated for application in poultry litter. Two experimental protocols were tested: single treatment and repeated treatment (re-application of phage SM1 after 6 h and 12 h). Each treatment cycle involved 25 g of poultry litter placed in plastic boxes and contaminated with 105 Colony Forming Units mL−1 (CFU mL−1) of S. Enteritidis, in independent duplicates. The contaminated litter was treated with 106 Plaque Forming Units mL−1 (PFU mL−1) of SM1 phage by dripping. Repeated application of phage SM1 reduced Salmonella counts by over 99.9%; the phage persisted in poultry litter for over 35 days. This study illustrates the application of SM1 treatment as a promising technology for bacterial control in production matrices that could allow safe and sustainable use of agricultural waste products as biofertilizers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Food Microbiology: The Past and the New Challenges)
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Article
Microbial Quality of Treated Wastewater and Borehole Water Used for Irrigation in a Semi-Arid Area
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(16), 8861; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18168861 - 23 Aug 2021
Viewed by 329
Abstract
The current study investigated the distribution of microbial populations and diversity in treated wastewater used for irrigation at the University of Limpopo Experimental Farm (ULEF), from different stages of post treatment disposal at Mankweng Wastewater Treatment Plant (MWTP) in Limpopo Province, South Africa. [...] Read more.
The current study investigated the distribution of microbial populations and diversity in treated wastewater used for irrigation at the University of Limpopo Experimental Farm (ULEF), from different stages of post treatment disposal at Mankweng Wastewater Treatment Plant (MWTP) in Limpopo Province, South Africa. The study was arranged in a 4 × 5 factorial experiment, which studied the interactive effects of four collection points and five months of sampling, with borehole water used as a reference point. Water samples were analyzed for bacteria, helminths, and protozoa. All data were transformed and subjected to factorial analysis of variance. The site–time interactions were significant for Salmonella spp. and Ascaris lumbricoides, whereas collection point was significant for all variables. In conclusion, movement and storage of water post treatment at MWTP were able to improve the microbial quality of the treated wastewater disposed for irrigation at ULEF. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Environmental Health)
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