Publications by authors named "Rima Chakrabarti"

4 Publications

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Approaching an undergraduate medical curriculum map: challenges and expectations.

BMC Med Educ 2021 Jun 10;21(1):341. Epub 2021 Jun 10.

University College London, London, UK.

Background: Feedback received from medical students at University College London Medical School (UCLMS) suggested a lack of clarity regarding the contents and subsequent assessment of the undergraduate curriculum. In order to address these issues, a specialist team was established with the aim of designing and implementing a Curriculum Map (CM), which have been recognised in their ability to provide a centralised, visual representation of the curriculum. While multiple perspectives from educators to stakeholders can be considered here, the need for the CM to remain student centred was identified as key at UCLMS. The aim of this study was therefore to understand the requirements of the CM prior to production from the perspective of the medical students.

Methods: A mixed-methods sequential study was conducted. The first stage involved gathering quantitative data using a primary online survey. This used 15 questions, rated by Likert scales and focussed around three domains: depiction of content, functionality and students' likely engagement with a CM. There was a free-text question for additional comments. The second stage consisted of multiple student focus groups representing different years of the programme, conducted by trained facilitators following a predetermined scheme. Reflective Thematic Analysis (RTA) was used to synthesise the qualitative data, which was read independently by two researchers. All students at UCLMS were invited to participate in the study.

Results: There were 409 survey responses. 92% of students said they were 'likely' or 'very likely' to use a CM, with their key intended use being to monitor their learning progress and ensure preparedness for assessments. Five key themes emerged from the focus groups, namely that students wanted a CM to be: comprehensive; simple and intuitive; able to link content throughout the course; aligned with assessment; and useful to monitor students' progress.

Conclusions: Through this study, valuable insight was gained on students' ideal preferences for the CM. Understanding this was important in order to ensure that its co-design remained student-centred prior to its design and launch. This study also highlighted the need to set realistic expectations for students on the role of a CM in preparing them for assessments, and ultimately professional practice.
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June 2021

The role of the multidisciplinary team in the management of deep infiltrating endometriosis.

Gynecol Surg 2017 15;14(1):15. Epub 2017 Aug 15.

Croydon Endometriosis Centre, Croydon University Hospital, 530 London Road, Croydon, CR7 7YE UK.

The multidisciplinary team (MDT) is considered good practice in the management of chronic conditions and is now a well-established part of clinical care in the NHS. There has been a recent drive to have MDTs in the management of women with severe endometriosis requiring complex surgery as a result of recommendations from the European Society for Human Reproduction and Embryology (ESHRE) and British Society for Gynaecological Endoscopy (BSGE). The multidisciplinary approach to the management of patients with endometriosis leads to better results in patient outcomes; however, there are potentially a number of barriers to its implementation and maintenance. This paper aims to review the potential benefits, disadvantages and barriers of the multidisciplinary team in the management of severe endometriosis.
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August 2017

Variability of cholesterol accessibility in human red blood cells measured using a bacterial cholesterol-binding toxin.

Elife 2017 02 8;6. Epub 2017 Feb 8.

Howard Hughes Medical Institute, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, United States.

Cholesterol partitions into accessible and sequestered pools in cell membranes. Here, we describe a new assay using fluorescently-tagged anthrolysin O, a cholesterol-binding bacterial toxin, to measure accessible cholesterol in human red blood cells (RBCs). Accessible cholesterol levels were stable within individuals, but varied >10 fold among individuals. Significant variation was observed among ethnic groups (Blacks>Hispanics>Whites). Variation in accessibility of RBC cholesterol was unrelated to the cholesterol content of RBCs or plasma, but was associated with the phospholipid composition of the RBC membranes and with plasma triglyceride levels. Pronase treatment of RBCs only modestly altered cholesterol accessibility. Individuals on hemodialysis, who have an unexplained increase in atherosclerotic risk, had significantly higher RBC cholesterol accessibility. Our data indicate that RBC accessible cholesterol is a stable phenotype with significant inter-individual variability. Factors both intrinsic and extrinsic to the RBC contribute to variation in its accessibility. This assay provides a new tool to assess cholesterol homeostasis among tissues in humans.
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February 2017

Adult-onset liver disease and hepatocellular carcinoma in S-adenosylhomocysteine hydrolase deficiency.

Mol Genet Metab 2015 Dec 26;116(4):269-74. Epub 2015 Oct 26.

Department of Molecular Genetics, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX, United States; McDermott Center for Human Growth and Development, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX, United States; Howard Hughes Medical Institute, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX, United States. Electronic address:

Background: The etiology of liver disease remains elusive in some adults presenting with severe hepatic dysfunction.

Methods And Results: Here we describe a woman of Pakistani descent who had elevated aminotransferases at age 23. She developed muscle weakness in her mid-20s, and was diagnosed with hepatocellular carcinoma at age 29. She died without a diagnosis at age 32 after having a liver transplant. Exome sequencing revealed that she was homozygous for a missense mutation (R49H) in AHCY, the gene encoding S-adenosylhomocysteine (SAH) hydrolase. SAH hydrolase catalyzes the final step in conversion of methionine to homocysteine and inactivating mutations in this enzyme cause a rare autosomal recessive disorder, SAH hydrolase deficiency, that typically presents in infancy. An asymptomatic 7-year old son of the proband is also homozygous for the AHCY-R49H mutation and has elevated serum aminotransferase levels, as well as markedly elevated serum levels of SAH, S-adenosylmethionine (SAM), and methionine, which are hallmarks of SAH hydrolase deficiency.

Conclusion: This report reveals several new aspects of SAH hydrolase deficiency. Affected women with SAH hydrolase deficiency can give birth to healthy children. SAH hydrolase deficiency can remain asymptomatic in childhood, and the disorder can be associated with early onset hepatocellular carcinoma. The measurement of serum amino acids should be considered in patients with liver disease or hepatocellular carcinoma of unknown etiology.
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December 2015