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Effect of Delirium and Other Major Complications on Outcomes After Elective Surgery in Older Adults

Tue, 06/14/2016 - 10:33am

IMPORTANCE: Major postoperative complications and delirium contribute independently to adverse outcomes and high resource use in patients who undergo major surgery; however, their interrelationship is not well examined.

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the association of major postoperative complications and delirium, alone and combined, with adverse outcomes after surgery.

DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS: Prospective cohort study in 2 large academic medical centers of 566 patients who were 70 years or older without recognized dementia or a history of delirium and underwent elective major orthopedic, vascular, or abdominal surgical procedures with a minimum 3-day hospitalization between June 18, 2010, and August 8, 2013. Data analysis took place from December 13, 2013, through May 1, 2015.

MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES: Major postoperative complications, defined as life-altering or life-threatening events (Accordion Severity grade 2 or higher), were identified by expert-panel adjudication. Delirium was measured daily with the Confusion Assessment Method and a validated medical record review method. The following 4 subgroups were analyzed: (1) no complications or delirium; (2) complications only; (3) delirium only; and (4) complications and delirium. Adverse outcomes included a length of stay (LOS) of more than 5 days, institutional discharge, and rehospitalization within 30 days of discharge.

RESULTS: In the 566 participants, the mean (SD) age was 76.7 (5.2) years, 236 (41.7%) were male, and 523 (92.4%) were white. Forty-seven patients (8.3%) developed major complications and 135 (23.9%) developed delirium. Compared with no complications or delirium as the reference group, major complications only contributed to prolonged LOS only (relative risk [RR], 2.8; 95% CI, 1.9-4.0); by contrast, delirium only significantly increased all adverse outcomes, including prolonged LOS (RR, 1.9; 95% CI, 1.4-2.7), institutional discharge (RR, 1.5; 95% CI, 1.3-1.7), and 30-day readmission (RR, 2.3; 95% CI, 1.4-3.7). The subgroup with complications and delirium had the highest rates of all adverse outcomes, including prolonged LOS (RR, 3.4; 95% CI, 2.3-4.8), institutional discharge (RR, 1.8; 95% CI, 1.4-2.5), and 30-day readmission (RR, 3.0; 95% CI, 1.3-6.8). Delirium exerted the highest attributable risk at the population level (5.8%; 95% CI, 4.7-6.8) compared with all other adverse events (prolonged LOS, institutional discharge, or readmission).

CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE: Major postoperative complications and delirium are separately associated with adverse events and demonstrate a combined effect. Delirium occurs more frequently and has a greater effect at the population level than other major complications.

Characterization of the platelet transcriptome by RNA sequencing in patients with acute myocardial infarction

Tue, 06/14/2016 - 10:33am

Transcripts in platelets are largely produced in precursor megakaryocytes but remain physiologically active as platelets translate RNAs and regulate protein/RNA levels. Recent studies using transcriptome sequencing (RNA-seq) characterized the platelet transcriptome in limited number of non-diseased individuals. Here, we expand upon these RNA-seq studies by completing RNA-seq in platelets from 32 patients with acute myocardial infarction (MI). Our goals were to characterize the platelet transcriptome using a population of patients with acute MI and relate gene expression to platelet aggregation measures and ST-segment elevation MI (STEMI) (n = 16) vs. non-STEMI (NSTEMI) (n = 16) subtypes. Similar to other studies, we detected 9565 expressed transcripts, including several known platelet-enriched markers (e.g. PPBP, OST4). Our RNA-seq data strongly correlated with independently ascertained platelet expression data and showed enrichment for platelet-related pathways (e.g. wound response, hemostasis, and platelet activation), as well as actin-related and post-transcriptional processes. Several transcripts displayed suggestively higher (FBXL4, ECHDC3, KCNE1, TAOK2, AURKB, ERG, and FKBP5) and lower (MIAT, PVRL3, and PZP) expression in STEMI platelets compared to NSTEMI. We also identified transcripts correlated with platelet aggregation to TRAP (ATP6V1G2, SLC2A3), collagen (CEACAM1, ITGA2), and ADP (PDGFB, PDGFC, ST3GAL6). Our study adds to current platelet gene expression resources by providing transcriptome-wide analyses in platelets isolated from patients with acute MI. In concert with prior studies, we identify various genes for further study in regards to platelet function and acute MI. Future platelet RNA-seq studies examining more diverse sets of healthy and diseased samples will add to our understanding of platelet thrombotic and non-thrombotic functions.

Construct validation of the dietary inflammatory index among postmenopausal women

Thu, 06/09/2016 - 12:10pm

PURPOSE: Many dietary factors have either proinflammatory or anti-inflammatory properties. We previously developed a dietary inflammatory index (DII) to assess the inflammatory potential of diet. In this study, we conducted a construct validation of the DII based on data from a food frequency questionnaire and three inflammatory biomarkers in a subsample of 2567 postmenopausal women in the Women's Health Initiative Observational Study.

METHODS: We used multiple linear and logistic regression models, controlling for potential confounders, to test whether baseline DII predicted concentrations of interleukin-6, high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP), tumor necrosis factor alpha receptor 2, or an overall biomarker score combining all three inflammatory biomarkers.

RESULTS: The DII was associated with the four biomarkers with beta estimates (95% confidence interval) comparing the highest with lowest DII quintiles as follows: interleukin-6: 1.26 (1.15-1.38), Ptrend < .0001; tumor necrosis factor alpha receptor 2: 81.43 (19.15-143.71), Ptrend = .004; dichotomized hs-CRP (odds ratio for higher vs. lower hs-CRP): 1.30 (0.97-1.67), Ptrend = .34; and the combined inflammatory biomarker score: 0.26 (0.12-0.40), Ptrend = .0001.

CONCLUSIONS: The DII was significantly associated with inflammatory biomarkers. Construct validity of the DII indicates its utility for assessing the inflammatory potential of diet and for expanding its use to include associations with common chronic diseases in future studies.

Semiparametric time to event models in the presence of error-prone, self-reported outcomes - with application to the Women's Health Initiative

Thu, 06/09/2016 - 12:10pm

The onset of several silent, chronic diseases such as diabetes can be detected only through diagnostic tests. Due to cost considerations, self-reported outcomes are routinely collected in lieu of expensive diagnostic tests in large-scale prospective investigations such as the Women's Health Initiative. However, self-reported outcomes are subject to imperfect sensitivity and specificity. Using a semiparametric likelihood-based approach, we present time to event models to estimate the association of one or more covariates with a error-prone, self-reported outcome. We present simulation studies to assess the effect of error in self-reported outcomes with regard to bias in the estimation of the regression parameter of interest. We apply the proposed methods to prospective data from 152,830 women enrolled in the Women's Health Initiative to evaluate the effect of statin use with the risk of incident diabetes mellitus among postmenopausal women. The current analysis is based on follow-up through 2010, with a median duration of follow-up of 12.1 years. The methods proposed in this paper are readily implemented using our freely available R software package icensmis, which is available at the Comprehensive R Archive Network (CRAN) website.

Inflammatory potential of diet and all-cause, cardiovascular, and cancer mortality in National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey III Study

Thu, 06/09/2016 - 12:09pm

BACKGROUND: Various dietary components have been studied in relation to overall mortality; however, little is known about the relationship between the inflammatory potential of overall diet and mortality.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: We examined the association between the dietary inflammatory index (DII) and mortality in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey III follow-up study. The DII was computed from baseline dietary intake assessed using 24-h dietary recalls (1988-1994). Mortality was determined from the National Death Index records through 2006. Cox proportional hazards regression was used to estimate hazard ratios (HRs) and 95 % confidence interval (95 % CI). During the follow-up, 2795 deaths were identified, including 1233 due to cardiovascular disease (CVD), and 615 due to cancer, 158 of which were due to digestive-tract cancers.

RESULTS: Multivariate Cox proportional hazards regression analyses, adjusting for age, race, diabetes status, hypertension, physical activity, body mass index, poverty index, and smoking, revealed positive associations between higher DII scores and mortality. Comparing subjects in DII tertile 3 versus tertile 1, significant associations were noted for all-cause mortality (HRTertile3vs1 1.34; 95 % CI 1.19-1.51, P trend < 0.0001), CVD mortality (HRTertile3vs1 1.46; 95 % CI 1.18-1.81, P trend = 0.0006), cancer mortality (HRTertile3vs1 1.46; 95 % CI 1.10-1.96, P trend = 0.01), and digestive-tract cancer mortality (HRTertile3vs1 2.10; 95 % CI 1.15-3.84, P trend = 0.03).

CONCLUSION: These results indicate that a pro-inflammatory diet, as indicated by higher DII scores, was associated with higher risk of all-cause, CVD, and cancer mortality.

Feasibility of Pairing Behavioral Activation With Exercise for Women With Type 2 Diabetes and Depression: The Get It Study Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial

Thu, 06/09/2016 - 12:09pm

Major depressive disorder is often comorbid with diabetes and associated with worse glycemic control. Exercise improves glycemic control and depression, and thus could be a parsimonious intervention for patients with comorbid diabetes and major depression. Because patients with diabetes and comorbid depression are often sedentary and lack motivation to exercise, we developed a group exercise intervention that integrates strategies from behavioral activation therapy for depression to increase motivation for and enjoyment of exercise. We conducted a 6-month pilot randomized controlled trial to test the feasibility of the behavioral activation exercise intervention (EX) for women with diabetes and depression. Of the 715 individuals who contacted us about the study, 29 participants were randomized to the EX condition or an enhanced usual care condition (EUC), which represents 4.1% of participants who initially contacted us. Inclusion criteria made recruitment challenging and limits the feasibility of recruiting women with diabetes and depression for a larger trial of the intervention. Retention was 96.5% and 86.2% at 3 and 6months. Participants reported high treatment acceptability; use of behavioral activation strategies and exercise class attendance was acceptable. No condition differences were observed for glycemic control, depressive symptoms, and physical activity, though depressive symptoms and self-reported physical activity improved over time. Compared to participants in the EUC condition, participants in the EX condition reported greater exercise enjoyment and no increase in avoidance behavior over time. Using behavioral activation strategies to increase exercise is feasible in a group exercise setting. However, whether these strategies can be delivered in a less intensive manner to a broader population of sedentary adults, for greater initiation and maintenance of physical activity, deserves further study.

Impact of incident diabetes on atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease according to statin use history among postmenopausal women

Thu, 06/09/2016 - 12:09pm

To compare impact of incident diabetes on atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD) risk among postmenopausal women according to statin use. Prospective data from 120,499 postmenopausal women without prevalent diabetes or cardiovascular disease at baseline from the Women's Health Initiative were used. Incident diabetes was self-reported annually and defined as treatment with pills or injectable medication for diabetes. Current statin use was determined at enrollment and years 1, 3, 6, 9 and 13.5 in the three clinical trial arms, and at baseline, year 3, and 13.5 for the observational study. The primary outcome was incident ASCVD events, self-reported annually and adjudicated by blinded local and central physicians. Incident diabetes and statin use status were fitted as time-varying covariates in Cox regression models to assess ASCVD risk during an average follow-up of 13.6 years. For those not on statins at the time of diabetes diagnosis, there was a 42 % increased risk of ASCVD [hazard ratio (HR) 1.42, 95 % CI 1.28-1.58] among women with incident diabetes versus those without diabetes. Among women on statins, there was a 39 % increased risk of ASCVD (HR 1.39, 95 % CI 1.12-1.74) in women with incident diabetes versus those without diabetes. The increased ASCVD risk due to diabetes was similar between women before or after initiating statins (P = 0.89). Whether diabetes was diagnosed before or after statin use did not alter the increased risk of ASCVD associated with diabetes. Mitigating the increased incidence of diabetes in statin users could increase the ASCVD benefit-to-risk ratio of statins.

Association between dietary inflammatory potential and breast cancer incidence and death: results from the Women's Health Initiative

Thu, 06/09/2016 - 12:08pm

BACKGROUND: Diet modulates inflammation and inflammatory markers have been associated with cancer outcomes. In the Women's Health Initiative, we investigated associations between a dietary inflammatory index (DII) and invasive breast cancer incidence and death.

METHODS: The DII was calculated from a baseline food frequency questionnaire in 122 788 postmenopausal women, enrolled from 1993 to 1998 with no prior cancer, and followed until 29 August 2014. With median follow-up of 16.02 years, there were 7495 breast cancer cases and 667 breast cancer deaths. We used Cox regression to estimate multivariable-adjusted hazards ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (95% CIs) by DII quintiles (Q) for incidence of overall breast cancer, breast cancer subtypes, and deaths from breast cancer. The lowest quintile (representing the most anti-inflammatory diet) was the reference.

RESULTS: The DII was not associated with incidence of overall breast cancer (HRQ5vsQ1, 0.99; 95% CI, 0.91-1.07; Ptrend=0.83 for overall breast cancer). In a full cohort analysis, a higher risk of death from breast cancer was associated with consumption of more pro-inflammatory diets at baseline, after controlling for multiple potential confounders (HRQ5vsQ1, 1.33; 95% CI, 1.01-1.76; Ptrend=0.03).

CONCLUSIONS: Future studies are needed to examine the inflammatory potential of post-diagnosis diet given the suggestion from the current study that dietary inflammatory potential before diagnosis is related to breast cancer death.

Decision Aids and Shared Decision-Making in Neurocritical Care: An Unmet Need in Our NeuroICUs

Wed, 06/08/2016 - 2:59pm

Improved resuscitation methods and advances in critical care have significantly increased the survival of patients presenting with devastating brain injuries compared to prior decades. After the patient's stabilization phase, families and patients are faced with "goals-of-care" decisions about continuation of aggressive intensive care unit care or comfort care only (CMO). Highly varying rates of CMO between centers raise the question of "self-fulfilling prophecies." Disease severity, the physician's communication and the family's understanding of projected outcomes, their uncertainties, complication risks with continued care, physician bias, and the patient's and surrogate's wishes and values all influence a CMO decision. Disease-specific decision support interventions, decision aids (DAs), may remedy these issues in the neurocritical care unit, potentially leading to better-informed and less-biased goals-of-care decisions in neurocritically ill patients, while increasing decision knowledge, confidence, and realistic expectations and decreasing decisional conflict and regret. Shared decision-making (SDM) is a collaborative process that enhances patients' and proxies' understanding about prognosis, encourages them to actively weigh the risks and benefits of a treatment, and considers the patient's preferences and values to make better decisions. DAs are SDM tools, which have been successfully implemented for many other conditions to assist difficult decision-making. In this article, we summarize the purposes of SDM, the derivation of DAs, and their potential application in neurocritical care.

It's All About Location, Location, Location: A New Perspective on Trauma Transport

Wed, 06/08/2016 - 2:59pm

OBJECTIVE: To determine the effect of aeromedical transport on trauma mortality when accounting for geographic factors.

BACKGROUND: The existing literature on the mortality benefit of aeromedical transport on trauma mortality is controversial. Studies examining patient and injury characteristics find higher mortality, whereas studies measuring injury severity find a protective effect. Previous studies have not adjusted for the time and distance that would have been traveled had a helicopter not been used.

METHODS: Retrospective analysis of an institutional trauma registry. We compared mortality among adult patients ( > /=15 years) transported from the scene of injury to our level I trauma center by air or ground (January 1, 2000-December 31, 2010) using univariate comparisons and multivariable logistic regression. Regression models were constructed to incrementally account for patient demographics and injury mechanism, followed by injury severity, and, finally, by network bands for drive time and roadway distance as predicted by geographic information systems.

RESULTS: Of 4522 eligible patients, 1583 (35%) were transported by air. Patients transported by air had higher unadjusted mortality (4.1% vs 1.9%, P < 0.05). In multivariable modeling, including patient demographics and type of injury, helicopter transport predicted higher mortality than ground transport (odds ratio [OR] 2.4, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.2-4.0). After adding validated injury severity measures to the model, helicopter transport predicted lower mortality (OR 0.7, 95% CI 0.3-0.9). Finally, including geographic covariates found that helicopter transport was not associated with mortality (OR 1.1, 95% CI 0.6-2.3).

CONCLUSIONS: Helicopter transport does not impart a survival benefit for trauma patients when geographic considerations are taken into account.

Cortisol response to the Trier Social Stress Test in pregnant women at risk for postpartum depression

Wed, 06/08/2016 - 2:59pm

Antepartum depression and anxiety are risk factors for postpartum depression (PPD). Postpartum abnormalities in hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) reactivity are associated with PPD. It is not known if antepartum HPA abnormalities exist in women at risk for PPD (AR-PPD). We measured salivary cortisol response to the Trier Social Stress Test (TSST) in 44 (24 AR-PPD, 20 healthy comparison) pregnant women. Depression and anxiety were measured using the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) and Spielberger State-Trait Anxiety Inventory-State (STAI-S). We analyzed longitudinal changes in cortisol using generalized estimating equation methods to control for the correlation within subjects at the six TSST time points. Group differences in area under the curve (AUC) were examined. A majority (70.8 %) of the AR-PPD had prior depression. EPDS total score was higher in AR-PPD vs. comparison women (mean EPDS = 9.8 +/- 4.9 vs. mean EPDS = 2.4 +/- 2.0 respectively, p < 0.001). Mean STAI-S total score was higher in AR-PPD vs. comparison women at all TSST time points and over time (z = 2.71, df = 1, p = 0.007). There was no significant difference in cortisol concentration over time between groups. We observed no detectable difference in cortisol response to psychosocial stress induced by the TSST despite clinically significant between-group differences in current/past depression and current symptomatology.

Patterns of Adult Cross-Racial Friendships: A Context for Understanding Contemporary Race Relations

Wed, 06/08/2016 - 2:59pm

OBJECTIVES: This study examined patterns, characteristics, and predictors of cross-racial friendships as the context for understanding contemporary race relations.

METHOD: A national survey included 1,055 respondents, of whom 55% were white, 32% were black, and 74% were female; ages ranged from 18 to > /=65 years. Focus groups were conducted to assess societal and personal benefits. Participants (n = 31) were racially diverse and aged 20 to 66 years.

RESULTS: After accounting for multiple covariates, regression analysis revealed that Asians, Hispanics, and multiracial individuals are more likely than their white and black counterparts to have cross-racial friends. Females were less likely than males to have 8 or more cross-racial friends. Regression analysis revealed that the depth of cross-racial friendships was greater for women than men and for those who shared more life experiences. Increasing age was associated with lower cross-racial friendship depth. Qualitative analysis of open-ended questions and focus group data established the social context as directly relevant to the number and depth of friendships. Despite the level of depth in cross-racial friendships, respondents described a general reluctance to discuss any racially charged societal events, such as police shootings of unarmed black men.

CONCLUSION: This study identified salient characteristics of individuals associated with cross-racial friendships and highlighted the influence of the social, historical, and political context in shaping such friendships. Our findings suggest that contemporary race relations reflect progress as well as polarization.

Sleep Duration and Diet Quality Among Women Within 5 Years of Childbirth in the United States: A Cross-Sectional Study

Wed, 06/08/2016 - 2:59pm

Objective: Only 9 % of women with young children consume a high quality diet. The association between sleep duration and health may be U-shaped. We examined diet quality in relation to sleep duration among US women within 5 years of childbirth.

Methods: Data were from non-pregnant women aged 20-44 years within 5 years of childbirth who completed two 24-h dietary recalls (N = 896) in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2005-2012. Self-reported weekday/workday sleep duration was categorized as short ( < /=6 h), adequate (7-8 h), or long ( > /=9 h). The Healthy Eating Index (HEI-2010, range 0-100) estimated overall and components of diet quality. Multivariable-adjusted linear regression models estimated the association between sleep duration and diet quality, adjusting for age, race/ethnicity, and education.

Results: Thirty-four percent of women reported short, 57.1 % adequate, and 8.6 % long sleep duration. The average diet quality total score was 47.4 out of 100. Short sleep duration was not associated with diet quality. Long sleep duration was associated with lower quality diet (beta = -4.3; 95 % CI -8.1 to -0.4), lower consumption of total fruit (beta = -0.7; 95 % CI -1.3 to -0.1), whole fruit (beta = -0.9; 95 % CI -1.6 to -0.2), and total protein (beta = -0.7; 95 % CI -1.3 to -0.03), and higher consumption of empty calories (beta = 2.2; 95 % CI -4.3 to -0.1).

Conclusions: for practice Future studies should examine the longitudinal association between sleep duration and diet quality among women following childbirth and whether interventions to improve sleep can enhance diet quality.

The presence of physician champions improved Kangaroo mother care in rural western India

Wed, 06/08/2016 - 2:58pm

AIM: This study determined the effect of physician champions on the two main components of Kangaroo mother care (KMC): skin-to-skin care and breastfeeding.

METHODS: KMC practices among a retrospective cohort of 648 infants admitted to a rural Indian neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) between 5 January 2011 and 7 October 2014 were studied. KMC champions were identified based on their performance evaluation. We examined the effect of withdrawing physician champions on overall use, time to initiation and intensity of skin-to-skin care and breastfeeding, using separate models.

RESULTS: In comparison to when KMC champions were present, their absence was associated with a 45% decrease in the odds of receiving skin-to-skin care, with a 95% Confidence Interval (CI) of 64% to 17%, a 38% decrease in the rate of initiation skin-to-skin care (95% CI 53% to 82%) and an average of 1.47 less hours of skin-to-skin care (95% CI -2.07 to -0.86). Breastfeeding practices were similar across the different champion environments.

CONCLUSION: Withdrawing physician champions from the NICU setting was associated with a decline in skin-to-skin care, but not breastfeeding. Training healthcare workers and community stakeholders to become champions could help to scale up and maintain KMC practices.

eScience Symposium Reflections from Christopher Erdmann: Redefining the Librarian’s Role in eScience

Wed, 06/08/2016 - 2:18pm

Christopher Erdmann, Head Librarian, Wolbach Library, Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, shares his multiple experiences at the University of Massachusetts and New England Area Librarian eScience Symposium, as well as current challenges he sees for data science librarians. Christopher presented on a panel at the Eighth Annual eScience Symposium discussing the “future of data science” from a librarian’s perspective. See the video of this panel presentation on the 2016 eScience Symposium website.

A transcript of this interview is available for download via the Download button above.

eScience Symposium Reflections from Jian Qin: Finding Inspiration for Librarians in Data Science

Wed, 06/08/2016 - 2:18pm

Jian Qin, Professor, School of Information Studies, Syracuse University shares her multiple experiences at the University of Massachusetts and New England Area Librarian eScience Symposium, as well as her current efforts in library science and data science education. Jian presented on a panel at the Eighth Annual eScience Symposium discussing the “future of data science” from an educator’s perspective. See the video of this panel presentation on the 2016 eScience Symposium website.

A transcript of this interview is available for download via the Download button above.

Thinking Like A Scientist ... And An Engineer: Training future leaders and innovators in health care systems and delivery

Tue, 06/07/2016 - 3:25pm

Health care is increasingly becoming more complex with the advancement of accountable organizations, expansion of hospital systems, and major insurance and government reforms. As leaders of care teams, physicians are often expected to have a hybrid set of skills extending beyond clinical expertise. Examples of leadership knowledge and skill sets include organizational thinking, health quality improvement, health policy, financial literacy, health innovation, and many more. The number of MD/MBA programs has risen significantly since the 1990s and more recently, leadership pipelines for both medical residents and students have also emerged. These trends support a rising demand for well-rounded physician leaders. This project sets out to answer two questions: will a health care leadership program add value to undergraduate medical training for University of Massachusetts medical students? If so, what would such a leadership program look like?

We used the Lean management framework and “A3” Plan Do Study Analyze cycle (PDSA) to identify the challenges and appropriateness of developing a leadership program, and then to highlight ideas for promoting leadership. Key components of the framework include a root cause analysis and development of counter measures. As a platform for analysis, we examined the experiences of the “Quality Improvement Health Care Elective,” a student led series of lectures on health care process, Lean management, and health care leadership. We tested our counter measures as well as other ideas in a student opinion survey that focused on level of interest in leadership, career aspirations, desired deliverables, and the option of a training certificate.

An estimated 20% of the student population at UMass Medical School completed our survey (n=125). Our study discovered strong interest in the topic of leadership, with 20% of students stating they are very likely to take an elective on leadership, and 54% somewhat likely. Students were especially interested in career aspirations that included management and administration responsibilities, general career exploration, and opportunities for mentorship. These findings can be core features of developing a health care leadership option for medical students at UMass Medical School.