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Amblyopia (referred to as lazy eye) is a common childhood condition, and is defined as defective visual acuity in one or both eyes, which is present with no demonstrable abnormality of the visual pathway and is not immediately resolved by wearing glasses. Treatment for amblyopia usually starts with prescribing necessary glasses to correct visually important refractive errors followed by promoting the use of the amblyopic eye. This systematic review aimed to synthesize the best available evidence regarding the effectiveness and safety of two different treatment options used to promote the use of the amblyopic eye: conventional occlusion (patching) and atropine penalization (drops). Conventional occlusion involves patching the non‐amblyopic eye with an opaque patch for a set number of hours per day. Atropine penalization involves the instillation of atropine sulphate to blur the eyesight of the better‐seeing eye.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2010

Procedures performed in preterm and term neonates can be stressful and at times painful. Medications to reduce stress/pain for babies can lead to side effects. Propofol is a commonly used medication in adults and children to achieve sedation during minor procedures or major operations. Its use in newborn babies is studied in only one study of 63 babies. Propofol helped to reduce time to complete procedure, time of recovery and time to prepare drugs. However, with this small number of newborns studied, the safety can not be proven. Further studies are warranted.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2011

Nearsightedness (myopia) causes blurry vision when looking at distant objects. Approximately 33% of the population in the United States is nearsighted, and some Asian countries report that up to 80% of children are nearsighted. Several studies have examined a variety of methods (including eye drops, incomplete correction (known as 'undercorrection') of nearsightedness, multifocal lenses and contact lenses) to slow the worsening of nearsightedness.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2012

Asthma is a condition that affects the airways (tubes carrying air in and out of the lungs). During an asthma exacerbation (attack), the airways narrow and drugs can be taken to dilate, or widen, the airways. Common bronchodilators (medicines used to widen the airways) are short‐acting beta2‐ agonists (e.g. salbutamol) or anticholinergics (e.g. ipratropium bromide). In this review, we examined if the use of anticholinergic inhalers during an asthma attack in children aged over two years is effective compared to either placebo or another bronchodilator. We also looked at combinations of anticholinergic plus a beta2‐agonist compared to an anticholinergic on its own.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2012

In an asthma attack, the airways (small tubes in the lungs) narrow because of inflammation (swelling), muscle spasms and mucus secretions. Other symptoms include wheezing, coughing and chest tightness. This makes breathing difficult. Reliever inhalers typically contain short‐acting beta2‐agonists (SABAs) that relax the muscles in the airways, opening the airways so that breathing is easier. Anticholinergic drugs work by opening the airways and decreasing mucus secretions.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2013

We looked at if combined treatment of short‐acting beta‐agonists and anticholinergics were more effective to improve outcomes in adults with asthma who were treated in emergency departments compared to treatment with beta‐agonists alone.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2017

Many people, particularly in developing countries, are poisoned by organophosphorus pesticides (OPs) used in agriculture or for killing insects in the home. Poisoning may be accidental or intentional. Even when the usual antidotes are given, 10 to 20% of those poisoned still die. Research in animals has suggested that use of sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) or similar chemicals which make the blood alkaline might save people poisoned by OPs.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2011

Cardenolides are naturally occurring plant toxins which act primarily on the heart. While poisoning with the digitalis cardenolides (digoxin and digitoxin) are reported worldwide, cardiotoxicity from other cardenolides such as the yellow oleander are also a major problem, with tens of thousands of cases of poisoning each year in South Asia. Because cardenolides from these plants are structurally similar, acute poisonings are managed using similar treatments. The benefit of these treatments is of interest, particularly in the context of cost since most poisonings occur in developing countries where resources are very limited. The objectives of this review are to determine the efficacy of antidotes for the treatment of acute cardenolide poisoning, in particular atropine, isoprenaline (isoproterenol), multiple‐dose activated charcoal (MDAC), fructose‐1,6‐diphosphate, sodium bicarbonate, magnesium, phenytoin and antidigoxin Fab antitoxin.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2009

We reviewed the evidence about the effect of giving clonidine before anaesthesia (that is, as a premedication) on postoperative pain in children.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2014

Aminophylline is a drug that might help resuscitate patients in cardiac arrest when electrical activity is very slow or absent. Aminophylline may restore blood flow to the heart, improve electrical activity and make other drugs used in resuscitation more effective. We found five studies that included 1254 patients who had this type of cardiac arrest in the prehospital setting. Four of the five studies (1186 patients) were well‐designed studies with low risk of bias. Although no adverse events were reported, aminophylline showed no advantage when it was added to the standard resuscitation practice of paramedics when compared with placebo in these patients. It is not known whether giving aminophylline sooner would be helpful.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2015

Many thousands of people die every year because of poisoning by organophosphate pesticides. Most of the deaths are in developing countries. Drugs known as oximes are used as part of the standard recommended treatment, even though many doctors have said that they don't seem to have any benefit. This research has produced mixed evidence. Many of the studies had substantial limitations. Generally, the studies done to date do not support the routine use of oximes, however, they cannot exclude that there would be some doses or situations where a benefit would occur. The reviewers found that not enough research has been done to see whether oximes are actually effective or to define the doses that are more likely to be helpful. More research is needed before any firm conclusions can be drawn.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2011

Approximately half of those relatives and friends who witness it, as well as hospital staff, find the noise of 'death rattle' distressing. For this reason, doctors and nurses try to eliminate the sound using a variety of methods, from changing the position of the patient to giving drugs to stop the noise. The aim of this review is to find out which treatment, if any, is best. Only four of 32 reports identified met the inclusion criteria for this review; none showed a convincing benefit of any single drug over any others. Some treatments may be worth trying but staff should watch carefully for any side effects of the treatment (e.g. agitation or excessively dry mouth). Anxious relatives need explanation, reassurance and discussion about any fears and concerns associated with the terminal phase and 'death rattle'. Research in this difficult area is necessary to understand the cause of the noise, its effect on the patient and those around them and the best ways of managing this condition.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2017

Binocular versus standard occlusion or blurring treatment for unilateral amblyopia in children aged three to eight years.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2015

Background: Anticholinergics (e.g. ipratropium bromide, atropine sulfate) are inhaled drugs. They relax the airway muscles and decrease secretions. Anticholinergics are sometimes used in addition to beta2‐agonists (such as salbutamol and terbutaline), which are potent drugs given to relax smooth muscles in the airways in children with acute asthma. We do not know whether the addition of inhaled anticholinergics to beta2‐agonists is beneficial for children hospitalised with acute asthma.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2014

Faecal incontinence (inability to control bowel movements or leakage of stool or faeces) is a common healthcare problem, affecting up to one in 10 of adults living at home. This affects daily activities in about one or two in 100 people. It is more common in people living in residential care. Leakage of urine often occurs as well. Faecal incontinence can be debilitating and embarrassing. Treatments include pelvic floor muscle training, electrical stimulation, surgery and drugs. This review looked at drugs for the treatment of faecal incontinence. These included anti‐diarrhoea drugs or laxatives to regulate stools, and drugs to try to enhance the tone of muscle around the anus which help to keep it closed. Sixteen small trials were found, including 558 participants. The review of these trials found some evidence that anti‐diarrhoea drugs may reduce faecal incontinence for people having liquid stools. However, these drugs were associated with some side effects. There was some evidence that drugs to enhance the tone of the muscle around the anus may help, but more research is needed.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2013

Exercise‐induced bronchoconstriction, also commonly called exercise‐induced asthma, is associated with symptoms such as cough (locker room cough), wheezing, shortness of breath, and chest tightness following exercise. While an episode is generally self‐limiting, it can cause those afflicted to avoid vigorous activity and serious athletes to under‐perform by limiting endurance and prolonging recovery time. The combined results from the studies, determined that short‐acting beta‐agonists inhaled prior to exercise reduced the severity of attacks in both adults and children when compared to mast cell stabilizers alone. In addition, the mast‐cell stabilizers were slightly more effective than anticholinergic bronchodilators. Combining short‐acting beta‐agonists and mast‐cell stabilizers was no more effective than the agents administered alone. There were no significant adverse effects reported with the short term use of any of the drugs.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2009

The pancreas is an organ in the abdomen (tummy) that secretes several digestive enzymes (substances that enable and speed up chemical reactions in the body) into the pancreatic ductal system before it empties into the small bowel. It also contains the Islets of Langerhans, which secrete several hormones including insulin (helps regulate blood sugar). Acute pancreatitis is life‐threatening illness characterized by sudden inflammation of the pancreas, which can lead to failure of other organs, such as the lungs and kidneys. There is a lot of research into different medical treatments for the treatment of acute pancreatitis, but it is not clear what benefits each treatment has, or indeed if any medical treatment is beneficial apart from supportive treatment. This care includes body hydration and intensive care treatment for people with organ failure (to support the failing organs). We sought to resolve this issue by searching for existing studies on the topic. We included all randomised controlled trials (clinical studies where people are randomly put into one of two or more treatment groups) whose results were reported to 7 October 2016.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: April 21, 2017

There are different options for treating amblyopia in children, mostly depending on the type and severity of the condition.Some children only have one eye that focuses properly. This is known as amblyopia or "lazy eye" and is caused by the eyes sending two different images to the brain, which can happen when a child has strabismus (a squint) or is more nearsighted or farsighted in one eye than the other. The brain then ends up preferring the information coming from the stronger eye and neglecting the other.The severity of amblyopia largely determines the kind of treatment needed. The standard treatment options are:Glasses to correct refractive errors (nearsightedness or farsightedness, distorted vision).Eye patching (occlusion therapy): The stronger eye is covered with an eye patch for several hours a day. Children who wear glasses can fit the patch over one of the lenses. This is done to encourage the weaker eye to work harder so that vision improves. The word occlusion comes from Latin and means "closed."Drug therapy: Eye drops containing atropine or a similar drug are used to temporarily blur vision in the "good" eye. They relax the muscles in the eye so that the lens will not focus for a few hours.

Informed Health Online [Internet] - Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWiG).

Version: September 24, 2014

During general anaesthesia, a tube may be inserted into the trachea (windpipe) using an instrument called a laryngoscope in order to safely deliver oxygen and anaesthetic gases and to remove carbon dioxide. This procedure is known as laryngoscopy and tracheal intubation. It initiates a reflex response (the haemodynamic response to intubation) of an increase in blood pressure and heart rate. Several drugs in varied doses and by different routes have been used to blunt or prevent this response in order to prevent serious complications for the heart and the brain, which may even be fatal. This is because the increase in blood pressure and heart rate may put undue stress on the heart and the brain circulation. In some patients it may lead to abnormal heart rhythm (arrhythmias) and lack of oxygen to the heart muscle (myocardial ischaemia) resulting in changes in recorded electrical activity of the heart (shown on the electrocardiogram (ECG)), heart failure, or stroke. In spite of several studies on the use of drugs to suppress this response, it remains unclear what the best drugs to use are and in what dosages.

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews: Plain Language Summaries [Internet] - John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Version: 2013

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