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The development of a validated clinically meaningful endpoint for the evaluation of tear film stability as a measure of ocular surface protection for use in the diagnosis and evaluation of dry eye disease

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This dissertation presents methods for the evaluation of ocular surface protection during natural blink function. The evaluation of ocular surface protection is especially important in the diagnosis of dry eye and the evaluation of dry eye severity in clinical trials.

This dissertation presents methods for the evaluation of ocular surface protection during natural blink function. The evaluation of ocular surface protection is especially important in the diagnosis of dry eye and the evaluation of dry eye severity in clinical trials. Dry eye is a highly prevalent disease affecting vast numbers (between 11% and 22%) of an aging population. There is only one approved therapy with limited efficacy, which results in a huge unmet need. The reason so few drugs have reached approval is a lack of a recognized therapeutic pathway with reproducible endpoints. While the interplay between blink function and ocular surface protection has long been recognized, all currently used evaluation techniques have addressed blink function in isolation from tear film stability, the gold standard of which is Tear Film Break-Up Time (TFBUT). In the first part of this research a manual technique of calculating ocular surface protection during natural blink function through the use of video analysis is developed and evaluated for it's ability to differentiate between dry eye and normal subjects, the results are compared with that of TFBUT. In the second part of this research the technique is improved in precision and automated through the use of video analysis algorithms. This software, called the OPI 2.0 System, is evaluated for accuracy and precision, and comparisons are made between the OPI 2.0 System and other currently recognized dry eye diagnostic techniques (e.g. TFBUT). In the third part of this research the OPI 2.0 System is deployed for use in the evaluation of subjects before, immediately after and 30 minutes after exposure to a controlled adverse environment (CAE), once again the results are compared and contrasted against commonly used dry eye endpoints. The results demonstrate that the evaluation of ocular surface protection using the OPI 2.0 System offers superior accuracy to the current standard, TFBUT.

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Date Created
2012

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Surgical instrument reprocessing in a hospital setting analyzed with statistical process control and data mining techniques

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In a healthcare setting, the Sterile Processing Department (SPD) provides ancillary services to the Operating Room (OR), Emergency Room, Labor & Delivery, and off-site clinics. SPD's function is to reprocess reusable surgical instruments and return them to their home departments.

In a healthcare setting, the Sterile Processing Department (SPD) provides ancillary services to the Operating Room (OR), Emergency Room, Labor & Delivery, and off-site clinics. SPD's function is to reprocess reusable surgical instruments and return them to their home departments. The management of surgical instruments and medical devices can impact patient safety and hospital revenue. Any time instrumentation or devices are not available or are not fit for use, patient safety and revenue can be negatively impacted. One step of the instrument reprocessing cycle is sterilization. Steam sterilization is the sterilization method used for the majority of surgical instruments and is preferred to immediate use steam sterilization (IUSS) because terminally sterilized items can be stored until needed. IUSS Items must be used promptly and cannot be stored for later use. IUSS is intended for emergency situations and not as regular course of action. Unfortunately, IUSS is used to compensate for inadequate inventory levels, scheduling conflicts, and miscommunications. If IUSS is viewed as an adverse event, then monitoring IUSS incidences can help healthcare organizations meet patient safety goals and financial goals along with aiding in process improvement efforts. This work recommends statistical process control methods to IUSS incidents and illustrates the use of control charts for IUSS occurrences through a case study and analysis of the control charts for data from a health care provider. Furthermore, this work considers the application of data mining methods to IUSS occurrences and presents a representative example of data mining to the IUSS occurrences. This extends the application of statistical process control and data mining in healthcare applications.

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Date Created
2014