Publications by authors named "Siu-Hung Li"

8 Publications

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Feasibility of a ballet-inspired low-impact at-home workout programme for adults with stroke: a mixed-methods exploratory study protocol.

BMJ Open 2021 04 13;11(4):e045064. Epub 2021 Apr 13.

University of Southern California, Los Angeles, California, USA.

Introduction: Balancing problems are prominent in stroke survivors with unilateral paresis. Recent evidence supports that dance interventions are associated with significant improvements in gait, stability and walking endurance in people with neurological conditions. The aim of this study is to explore the feasibility of a novel ballet-inspired at-home workout programme (Footprints to Better Balance (FBB)) for stroke survivors.

Methods And Analysis: A mixed-methods exploratory study incorporating a randomised controlled trial and qualitative evaluation will be conducted. We will recruit 40 adults with a first-ever ischaemic or haemorrhagic stroke and mild-moderate lower limb paresis from two acute stroke units. The intervention group will receive usual care plus FBB, an 8-week home-based programme with ballet-inspired workouts underpinned by Bandura's principles of self-efficacy and outcome expectation. FBB will be delivered by trained lay and peer volunteers, with the support of volunteer healthcare professionals. Multiple data will be collected: Recruitment rate, adherence to FBB, semi-structured interviews and questionnaires on outcomes (balance, gait and memory) assessed at baseline and immediately post-intervention. The generalised estimating equations model will be used to compare differential changes on outcomes across time points between the two arms. Qualitative data will be coded and grouped to form themes and subthemes.

Ethics And Dissemination: Ethical approval from the Joint Chinese University of Hong Kong-New Territories East Cluster Clinical Research Ethics Committee has been obtained. All eligible participants will provide written informed consent. Study results will be disseminated via publications in peer-reviewed journals and presentations at international conferences.

Trial Registration Number: NCT04460794.
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April 2021

Promoting community reintegration using narratives and skills building for young adults with stroke: a protocol for a randomised controlled trial.

BMC Neurol 2021 Jan 4;21(1). Epub 2021 Jan 4.

Department of Medicine, North District Hospital, Hospital Authority, Hong Kong SAR, China.

Background: Stroke in adults aged between 18 and 64 years old is increasing significantly worldwide. Studies have reported that this group of young stroke survivors encounters enormous difficulties reintegrating into their social roles. Individualised discussions with healthcare professionals and learning from other survivors are imperative for them to reconstruct their identities after stroke. There is also great demand for community support during their chronic stage of recovery to help them rebuild life skills to promote reintegration.

Methods/design: This is a randomised controlled trial to investigate the effects of a 24-week Narrative and Skills-building Intervention (NSI) on young stroke survivors' community reintegration and psychosocial outcomes. A total of 208 adults aged 18-64 years old with a first-ever or recurrent ischaemic or haemorrhagic stroke and have been discharged home will be recruited and randomly assigned to receive usual care or usual care with NSI. The NSI is grounded in Narrative Theory and Bandura's principles of Self-efficacy and Outcome Expectation, consisting of successive eight individual sessions over six months delivered by a trained facilitator (a registered nurse). Participants will be facilitated to narrate their survival experiences and rebuild core life skills. Videos of peer young stroke survivors' experiences of recovery will be provided. Outcomes including community reintegration, depressive symptoms, health-related quality of life, self-efficacy, outcome expectation and satisfaction with performance of self-management behaviours will be measured before (T0) and immediately after NSI (T1), then six (T2) and 12 months after NSI (T3). Generalised estimating equations models will be used to compare the differential changes in outcomes across time between the two groups. Focus group interviews will be conducted with the facilitator at T1 and with the participants in the intervention group at T1 and T3.

Discussion: This study will evaluate the short and long-term effects of a theory-based NSI on young stroke survivors' community reintegration and establish a new model of community reintegration after stroke to inform future research. The results will also provide valuable evidence to develop clinical guidelines for young stroke survivors' community reintegration.

Trial Registration: identifier: NCT04560140 , registered on 23 September, 2020.
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January 2021

Plaque morphology in acute symptomatic intracranial atherosclerotic disease.

J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry 2020 Nov 25. Epub 2020 Nov 25.

Department of Medicine & Therapeutics, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR, China

Background: Intracranial atherosclerotic disease (ICAD) is globally a major ischaemic stroke subtype with high recurrence. Understanding the morphology of symptomatic ICAD plaques, largely unknown by far, may help identify vulnerable lesions prone to relapse.

Methods: We prospectively recruited patients with acute ischaemic stroke or transient ischaemic attack attributed to high-grade ICAD (60%-99% stenosis). Plaque morphological parameters were assessed in three-dimensional rotational angiography, including surface contour, luminal stenosis, plaque length/thickness, upstream shoulder angulation, axial/longitudinal plaque distribution and presence of adjoining branch atheromatous disease (BAD). We compared morphological features of smooth, irregular and ulcerative plaques and correlated them with cerebral ischaemic lesion load downstream in MRI.

Results: Among 180 recruited patients (median age=60 years; 63.3% male; median stenosis=75%), plaque contour was smooth (51 (28.3%)), irregular (101 (56.1%)) or ulcerative (28 (15.6%)). Surface ulcers were mostly at proximal (46.4%) and middle one-third (35.7%) of the lesions. Most (84.4%) plaques were eccentric, and half had their maximum thickness over the distal end. Ulcerative lesions were thicker (medians 1.6 vs 1.3 mm; p=0.003), had steeper upstream shoulder angulation (56.2° vs 31.0; p<0.001) and more adjoining BAD (83.3% vs 57.0%; p=0.033) than non-ulcerative plaques. Ulcerative plaques were significantly associated with coexisting acute and chronic infarcts downstream (35.7% vs 12.5%; adjusted OR 4.29, 95% CI 1.65 to 11.14, p=0.003). Sensitivity analyses in patients with anterior-circulation ICAD lesions showed similar results in the associations between the plaque types and infarct load.

Conclusions: Ulcerative intracranial atherosclerotic plaques were associated with vulnerable morphological features and had a higher cumulative infarct load downstream.
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November 2020

Clinical and pathological characterization of FLNC-related myofibrillar myopathy caused by founder variant c.8129G>A in Hong Kong Chinese.

Clin Genet 2020 05 23;97(5):747-757. Epub 2020 Feb 23.

Department of Pathology, Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Hong Kong.

FLNC-related myofibrillar myopathy could manifest as autosomal dominant late-onset slowly progressive proximal muscle weakness; involvements of cardiac and/or respiratory functions are common. We describe 34 patients in nine families of FLNC-related myofibrillar myopathy in Hong Kong ethnic Chinese diagnosed over the last 12 years, in whom the same pathogenic variant c.8129G>A (p.Trp2710*) was detected. Twenty-six patients were symptomatic when diagnosed; four patients died of pneumonia and/or respiratory failure. Abnormal amorphous material or granulofilamentous masses were detected in half of the cases, with mitochondrial abnormalities noted in two-thirds. We also show by haplotype analysis the founder effect associated with this Hong Kong variant, which might have occurred 42 to 71 generations ago or around Tang and Song dynasties, and underlain a higher incidence of myofibrillar myopathy among Hong Kong Chinese. The late-onset nature and slowly progressive course of the highly penetrant condition could have significant impact on the family members, and an early diagnosis could benefit the whole family. Considering another neighboring founder variant in FLNC in German patients, we advocate development of specific therapies such as chaperone-based or antisense oligonucleotide strategies for this particular type of myopathy.
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May 2020

Effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of a virtual multidisciplinary stroke care clinic for community-dwelling stroke survivors and caregivers: a randomised controlled trial protocol.

BMJ Open 2019 05 10;9(5):e026500. Epub 2019 May 10.

Hong Kong Institute of Integrative Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong.

Introduction: The virtual multidisciplinary stroke care clinic (VMSCC) is the first nurse-led clinic developed to offer support to community-dwelling stroke survivors and caregivers, and to promote poststroke recovery. This two-arm randomised controlled trial will evaluate its effectiveness on survivors' self-efficacy (SE), survivors' and caregivers' health-related quality of life (HRQoL) and cost-effectiveness on emergency admissions and length of readmission hospital stay.

Methods And Analysis: A consecutive sample of 384 stroke survivor-caregiver dyads will be recruited from four hospitals. An online platform that embraces readily accessible and reliable information will be developed. Participants randomly assigned to the intervention group will receive usual care plus the VMSCC service. The service includes access to a tablet containing 30 videos demonstrating appropriate self-care strategies, communication with a registered nurse monthly through video and telephone calls and regular blood pressure monitoring. Primary outcomes include survivors' SE in self-management and survivors' and caregivers' HRQoL. Secondary outcomes include survivors' performance of self-management behaviours, depression and social participation; and caregivers' coping strategies, satisfaction with caring and depression. Data will be collected at baseline, and at 3 and 6 months after commencing the intervention. Survivors' and caregivers' satisfaction with the service will be assessed at 6-month follow-up. Multivariable regressions and generalised estimating equations model will be conducted. Survivors' emergency admissions and length of hospital stay will be evaluated during the 6-month follow-up period. Cost-effectiveness analysis will be performed on the average total cost incurred.

Discussion: The results will inform stakeholders about incorporating the VMSCC service into current stroke rehabilitation service.

Ethics And Dissemination: This protocol was approved by the Joint Chinese University of Hong Kong-New Territories East Cluster Clinical Research Ethics Committee (CREC Ref. No.: 2017.660). All participants will provide written informed consent. Results will be disseminated through scientific publications, and presentations at local and international conferences.

Trial Registration Number: ChiCTR1800016101; Pre-results.
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May 2019

Risk of intracerebral haemorrhage in Chinese patients with atrial fibrillation on warfarin with cerebral microbleeds: the IPAAC-Warfarin study.

J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry 2019 04 15;90(4):428-435. Epub 2018 Dec 15.

Department of Medicine and Therapeutics, Prince of Wales Hospital, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Ma Liu Shui, Hong Kong

Background And Purpose: Cerebral microbleeds (CMBs), which predict future intracerebral haemorrhage (ICH), may guide anticoagulant decisions for atrial fibrillation (AF). We aimed to evaluate the risk of warfarin-associated ICH in Chinese patients with AF with CMBs.

Methods: In this prospective, observational, multicentre study, we recruited Chinese patients with AF who were on or intended to start anticoagulation with warfarin from six hospitals in Hong Kong. CMBs were evaluated with 3T MRI brain at baseline. Primary outcome was clinical ICH at 2-year follow-up. Secondary outcomes were ischaemic stroke, systemic embolism, mortality of all causes and modified Rankin Scale ≥3. Outcome events were compared between patients with and without CMBs.

Results: A total of 290 patients were recruited; 53 patients were excluded by predefined criteria. Among the 237 patients included in the final analysis, CMBs were observed in 84 (35.4%) patients, and 11 had ≥5 CMBs. The mean follow-up period was 22.4±10.3 months. Compared with patients without CMBs, patients with CMBs had numerically higher rate of ICH (3.6% vs 0.7%, p=0.129). The rate of ICH was lower than ischaemic stroke for patients with 0 to 4 CMBs, but higher for those with ≥5 CMBs. CMB count (C-index 0.82) was more sensitive than HAS-BLED (C-index 0.55) and CHA2DS2-VASc (C-index 0.63) scores in predicting ICH.

Conclusions: In Chinese patients with AF on warfarin, presence of multiple CMBs may be associated with higher rate of ICH than ischaemic stroke. Larger studies through international collaboration are needed to determine the risk:benefit ratio of oral anticoagulants in patients with AF of different ethnic origins.
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April 2019

Differential microvascular assessment of retinal vein occlusion with coherence tomography angiography and fluorescein angiography: a blinded comparative study.

Int Ophthalmol 2018 Jun 26;38(3):1119-1128. Epub 2017 May 26.

Department of Ophthalmology, United Christian Hospital, Kowloon, Hong Kong SAR.

Purpose: To compare the imaging of retinal vein occlusion (RVO) with optical coherence tomography angiography (OCTA) and fluorescein angiography (FA) and evaluate their roles in clinical management.

Methods: RVO patients who underwent imaging with both FA and OCTA from 1 June 2015-31 December 2015 were enrolled. An independent retinal specialist blinded from patient identity assessed the FA and OCTA reports. The pixel counting technique was used for FAZ size measurement. A significant level of p < 0.05 was taken for correlation and agreement analysis.

Results: On OCTA, the mean FAZ size was 0.382 ± 0.152 mm and 0.606 ± 0.136 mm for the superficial and deep retinal layers, respectively, with significant correlation (p = 0.004). On FA, the mean FAZ size was 0.352 ± 0.158 mm, better correlated with OCTA at the superficial (p = 0.062) than the deep retinal layer (p = 0.122). Between FA and OCTA, good agreement was found for microaneurysms (100%, p = 0.001) and venous congestion (83.33%, p = 0.028), but not capillary non-perfusion (p = 0.217) and venous tortuosity (p = 0.546). OCTA also revealed more capillary non-perfusion than FA (91.67 vs. 58.33%). The presenting best-corrected visual acuity was significantly correlated with capillary non-perfusion on OCTA (p = 0.001).

Conclusion: OCTA and FA are complementary tools in RVO assessment. While OCTA is more precise in the assessment of FAZ and capillary non-perfusion, FA offers better vascular imaging of the peripheral retina.
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June 2018

Evolution of intracranial atherosclerotic disease under modern medical therapy.

Ann Neurol 2015 Mar 29;77(3):478-86. Epub 2015 Jan 29.

Division of Neurology, Department of Medicine and Therapeutics.

Objective: Understanding how symptomatic intracranial atherosclerotic disease (ICAD) evolves with current medical therapy may inform secondary stroke prevention.

Methods: In a prospective academic-initiated study, we recruited 50 patients (mean age = 63.4 ± 9.0 years) with acute strokes attributed to high-grade (≥70%) intracranial atherosclerotic stenosis for 3-dimensional rotational angiograms before and after intensive medical therapy for 12 months. Treatment targets included low-density lipoprotein ≤ 70mg/dl, glycosylated hemoglobin (HbA1c) ≤ 6.5%, and systolic blood pressure ≤ 140 mmHg. We analyzed infarct topography and monitored microembolic signal in recurrent strokes. The reference group was a published cohort of 143 ICAD patients.

Results: Overall, the stenoses regressed from 79% at baseline (interquartile range [IQR] = 71-87%) to 63% (IQR = 54-74%) in 1 year (p < 0.001). Specifically, the qualifying lesions (n = 49) regressed (stenosis reduced >10%) in 24 patients (49%), remained quiescent (stenosis same or ±10%) in 21 patients (43%), and progressed (stenosis increased >10%) in 4 patients (8%). There was no difference in intensity of risk factor control between groups of diverging clinical or angiographic outcomes. Higher HbA1c at baseline predicted plaque regression at 1 year (odds ratio = 4.4, 95% confidence interval = 1.4-14.5, p = 0.006). Among the 6 patients with recurrent strokes pertaining to the qualifying stenosis, 5 patients had solitary or rosarylike acute infarcts along the internal or anterior border zones, and 2 patients showed microembolic signals in transcranial Doppler ultrasound.

Interpretation: A majority of symptomatic high-grade intracranial plaques had regressed or remained quiescent by 12 months under intensive medical therapy. Artery-to-artery thromboembolism with impaired washout at border zones was a common mechanism in stroke recurrence.
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March 2015