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Recent Research Publications and Funding

  •  | June 14, 2007 4:00AM

    The relationship of personality type at age 6 years to interpersonal violence at age 12 years was investigated. Participants from the Child Sample of the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth with complete data measures for the three time periods were categorized into one of the three personality types at age 6: under-controlled, resilient, and over-controlled. At age 12, participants assigned to the under-controlled personality type 6 years earlier were more likely than those assigned to the resilient or over-controlled personality types to report that they had hurt someone seriously at least once in the past year. The association of childhood personality to interpersonal violence 6 years later was not mediated by peer rejection or associations with deviant peers.  

  •  | June 1, 2007 4:00AM

    More than half of individuals diagnosed with dementia experience significant functional limitations. A restorative philosophy of care focuses on the restoration and/or maintenance of physical function and helps older adults to compensate for functional impairments so the the highest level of function is obtained and complications of physical dependance are minimized. When working with cognitively impaired individuals who commonly exhibit behavioral and psychiatric symptoms, it is essential ti move beyond the tendancy to focus only on behavioral interventions, and also implement a restorative philosophy of care that maxinizes physical function and quality of life. This article describes a 4-step approach that can be used to implement a restorative philosophy of care for older adults with cognitive impairment and their caregivers.

  •  | June 1, 2007 4:00AM

     The popularity of direct or systematic social observation as a method to evaluate the mechanisms by which neighborhood environments impact health and contribute to health disparities is growing. The development of measures with adequate inter-rater and test-retest reliability is essential for this research. In this paper, based on our experiences conducting direct observation of neighborhoods in Detroit, MI, we describe strategies to promote high inter-rater and test-retest reliability and methods to evaluate reliability. We then present the results and discuss implications for future research efforts using direct observation in four areas: methods to evaluate reliability, instrument content and design, observer training, and data collection.

  •  | May 31, 2007 4:00AM

    Because stress is a major factor in hypertension, research on parenting stressors and lifestyle behaviors of grandparents with hypertension is important. This study describes urban African Americans caring for grandchildren and examines effects of perceived parenting stressors on hypertension self-management. Hypertensive African American grandparents (N = 49) residing in a large Midwestern city participated in the study. Structured interviews collected descriptive data and the Index of Parental Attitudes (IPA). Participants' ages ranged from 30 to 82 years, were mostly female (77%), and had from 1 to 6 grandchildren. Participants were sedentary (51%), cigarette smokers (47%), and obese (67%). Mean systolic blood pressure was 157 and mean diastolic blood pressure was 89. IPA scores averaged 12.7, with scores ≥ 30, indicating high levels of parental stress. Some participants (8.4%) had clinically stressful relationships with their grandchildren. The correlation between blood pressure and parental stress was not statistically significant, with a significant negative correlation found between participants' ages and diastolic blood pressure. The correlation between the number of hours spent caregiving and age produced a statistically significant relationship.  

  •  | May 31, 2007 4:00AM

    This study explains how all participants in research are vulnerable to some extent. Survivors of trauma are often sought as participants for research studies and may be at an increased risk of emotional or psychological distress as a result of research participation. Scientists need to pay careful attention to issues of informed consent and the potential harm and benefits from research participation. This article explores challenges of selecting a sample, informed consent, and study continuation when conducting research with survivors of trauma.  

  •  | May 15, 2007 12:00AM

    Reliable and valid instruments are needed for evaluating complex inpatient psychiatric environments where psychiatric nurses work and patients get better. The Practice Environment Scale of the Nursing Workforce Index (PES-NWI) is an instrument commonly used in outcomes research to measure constructs of the practice environment. However, psychometric properties of the PES-NWI have not been tested in a psychiatric nurse population. This paper examines the psychometric properties of the PES-NWI using a sample of hospital based psychiatric registered nurses. The objective was to confirm the usefulness of the PES-NWI subscales to describe psychiatric inpatient nurse practice environments and generate reference values. Once established, researchers and administrators may use the PES-NWI to standardize the evaluation of inpatient psychiatric environments. Reference values could also be a tool for managers to target needed quality improvements and measure progress toward change in clinical environments.  

  •  | May 7, 2007 4:00AM

    Extremely low-birthweight infants have inefficient thermoregulation due to immaturity and may exhibit cold body temperatures after birth and during their first 12 hours of life. Hypothermia in these infants can lead to increased morbidity and mortality. Anecdotal notes made during our recent study revealed extremely low-birthweight infants’ temperatures decreased with caregiver procedures such as umbilical line insertion, intubations, obtaining chest x-rays, manipulating intravenous lines, repositioning, suctioning, and taking vital signs during the first 12 hours of life. Therefore, nursing interventions should be undertaken to prevent heat loss during these caregiver procedures. Nurses can improve the thermal environment for extremely low-birthweight infants by prewarming the delivery room and placing the infant in a plastic bag up to the neck during delivery room stabilization to prevent heat loss.


  •  | April 26, 2007 12:00AM

    The purpose of this study was to examine the relationships among parental stress, health (defined as level of systolic and diastolic blood pressure and body mass index), childcare characteristics, and social support. The study used a correlational research design and the setting was the metropolitan Detroit area. The sample consisted of 120 hypertensive African American parents and grandparents who reported caring for 1 to 9 children living in the household. Several variables (average diastolic blood pressure, number of children/grandchildren in home, child/grandchild is physically/mentally disabled, ability to decrease stress) were statistically significant predictors of parental stress. These results indicate that the multiple demands of parenting may become a barrier to making life-style changes for parents and grandparents diagnosed with hypertension. Nursing implications of the findings are discussed.  

  •  | April 15, 2007 12:00AM

    Fifteen African American women with a history of intimate partner violence (IPV) were interviewed to examine (a) the ways in which poor, urban African American women stay healthy, and particularly how they protected themselves from sexually transmitted diseases and HIV while in abusive relationships; and (b) the roles of intersecting contextual factors such as lifetime experiences of violence, mental health symptoms, and substance use in women's processes of maintaining their health. Data were analyzed using a qualitative descriptive approach. Women were managing numerous, complex problems as they actively worked to maintain their mental and physical health and that of their children. The turning point at which women made substantial changes came when women were "tired" and believed that a new beginning was needed. Racism, poverty, multiple experiences of violence, and health and mental health problems influenced women's health care decisions. Women's health maintenance strategies were often not visible to health care providers and included some behaviors that may place women at greater risk of violence or disease from the point of view of the health care provider.  

  •  | April 14, 2007 4:00AM

    Although the grounded theory method was not designed with nursing science in mind, it is one of the most prevalent and theory-producing qualitative methods in nursing. Changes in the grounded theory methodology have been debated in numerous articles. What has not received much attention, however, is a central idea of the grounded theory method - the basic social process. The goal here is to raise for consideration the idea that change is needed in nurse researchers' understanding of the basic social process; there is a need to reformulate this substantive concept of the grounded theory method so as to render it more congruent with nursing ontology and productive of nursing knowledge.