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עמוד בית
Fri, 24.05.24

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April 2023
Avishag Laish-Farkash MD PhD, Lubov Vasilenko MD, Noy Moisa BSc, Daniel Vorobiof MD

Background: Cannabis consumption is suspected of causing arrhythmias and potentially sudden death.

Objectives: To investigate prevalence and temporal relationships between cannabis use and onset of symptomatic arrhythmias among cancer patients using Belong.life, a digital patient powered network application.

Methods: Real-world data (RWD) were obtained through Belong.Life, a mobile application for cancer patients who use cannabis routinely. Patients replied anonymously and voluntarily to a survey describing their demographics, medical history, and cannabis use.

Results: In total, 354 cancer patients (77% female, 71% 50–69 years of age) replied: 33% were smokers and 49% had no co-morbidities. Fifteen had history of arrhythmias and two had a pacemaker; 64% started cannabis before or during chemotherapy and 18% had no chemotherapy. Cannabis indication was symptom relief in most patients. The mode of administration included oil, smoking, or edibles; only 35% were prescribed by a doctor. Cannabis type was delta 9-tetrahydrocannabinol > 15% in 43% and cannabidiol in 31%. After starting cannabis, 24 patients (7%) experienced palpitations; 13 received anti-arrhythmic drugs and 6 received anticoagulation. Eleven needed further medical investigation. Three were hospitalized. One had an ablation after starting cannabis and one stopped cannabis due to palpitations. Seven patients (2%) reported brady-arrhythmias after starting cannabis, but none needed pacemaker implantation.

Conclusions: RWD showed that in cancer patients using cannabis, the rate of reported symptomatic tachy- and brady-arrhythmias was significant (9%) but rarely led to invasive treatments. Although direct causality cannot be proven, temporal relationship between drug use and onset of symptoms suggests a strong association.

March 2022
Lior Fortis MD, Ella Yahud MD, Ziv Sevilya PhD, Roman Nevzorov MD MPH, Olga Perelshtein Brezinov MD, Michael Rahkovich MD, Eli I Lev MD, and Avishag Laish-Farkash MD PhD

Background: The CHA2DS2-VASc score has been shown to predict systemic thromboembolism and mortality in certain groups in sinus rhythm (SR), similar to its predictive value with atrial fibrillation (AF).

Objectives: To compare factors of inflammation, thrombosis, platelet reactivity, and turnover in patients with high versus low CHA2DS2-VASc score in SR.

Methods: We enrolled consecutive patients in SR and no history of AF. Blood samples were collected for neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio (NLR), C-reactive protein (CRP), immature platelet fraction (IPF%) and count (IPC), CD40 ligand, soluble P-selectin (sP-selectin) and E-selectin. IPF was measured by autoanalyzer and the other factors by ELISA.

Results: The study comprised 108 patients (age 58 ± 18 years, 63 women (58%), 28 (26%) with diabetes), In addition, 52 had high CHA2DS2-VASc score (³ 2 for male and ³ 3 for female) and 56 had low score. Patients with low scores were younger, with fewer co-morbidities, and smaller left atrial size. sP-selectin was higher in the high CHA2DS2-VASc group (45, interquartile ratio [IQR] 36–49) vs. 37 (IQR 28–46) ng/ml, P = 0.041]. Inflammatory markers were also elevated, CRP 3.1 mg/L (IQR 1.7–9.3) vs. 1.6 (IQR 0.78–5.4), P < 0.001; NLR 2.7 (IQR 2.1–3.8) vs. 2.1 (IQR 1.6–2.5), P = 0.001, respectively. There was no difference in E-selectin, CD40 ligand, IPC, or IPF% between the groups.

Conclusions: Patients in SR with high CHA2DS2-VASc score have higher inflammatory markers and sP-selectin. These findings may explain the higher rate of adverse cardiovascular events associated with elevated CHA2DS2-VASc score.

January 2022
Gergana Marincheva MD, Tal Levi MD, Olga Perelshtein Brezinov MD, Andrei Valdman MD, Michael Rahkovich MD, Yonatan Kogan MD, and Avishag Laish-Farkash MD PhD

Background: Endocardial leads of permanent pacemakers (PPM) and implantable defibrillators (ICD) across the tricuspid valve (TV) can lead to tricuspid regurgitation (TR) or can worsen existing TR with subsequent severe morbidity and mortality.

Objectives: To evaluate prospectively the efficacy of intraprocedural 2-dimentional-transthoracic echocardiography (2DTTE) in reducing/preventing lead-associated TR.

Methods: We conducted a prospective randomized controlled study comparing echocardiographic results in patients undergoing de-novo PPM/ICD implantation with intraprocedural echo-guided right ventricular (RV) lead placement (Group 1, n=56) versus non-echo guided implantation (Group 2, n=55). Lead position was changed if TR grade was more than baseline in Group 1. Cohort patients underwent 2DTTE at baseline and 3 and/or 6 months after implantation. Excluded were patients with baseline TR > moderate or baseline ≥ moderate RV dysfunction.

Results: The study comprised 111 patients (74.14 ± 11 years of age, 58.6% male, 19% ICD, 42% active leads). In 98 patients there was at least one follow-up echo. Two patients from Group 1 (3.6%) needed intraprocedural RV electrode repositioning. Four patients (3.5%, 2 from each group, all dual chamber PPM, 3 atrial fibrillation, 2 RV pacing > 40%, none with intraprocedural reposition) had TR deterioration during 6 months follow-up. One patient from Group 2 with baseline mild-moderate aortic regurgitation (AR) had worsening TR and AR within 3 months and underwent aortic valve replacement and TV repair.

Conclusions: The rate of mechanically induced lead-associated TR is low; thus, a routine intraprocedural 2DTTE does not have a significant role in reducing/preventing it

May 2018
Eran Leshem MD, Michael Rahkovich MD, Anna Mazo MD, Mahmoud Suleiman MD, Miri Blich MD, Avishag Laish-Farkash MD, Yuval Konstantino MD, Rami Fogelman MD, Boris Strasberg MD, Michael Geist MD, Israel Chetboun MD, Moshe Swissa MD, Michael Ilan MD, Aharon Glick MD, Yoav Michowitz MD, Raphael Rosso MD, Michael Glikson MD and Bernard Belhassen MD

Background: Limited information exists about detailed clinical characteristics and management of the small subset of Brugada syndrome (BrS) patients who had an arrhythmic event (AE).

Objectives: To conduct the first nationwide survey focused on BrS patients with documented AE.

Methods: Israeli electrophysiology units participated if they had treated BrS patients who had cardiac arrest (CA) (lethal/aborted; group 1) or experienced appropriate therapy for tachyarrhythmias after prophylactic implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) implantation (group 2).

Results: The cohort comprised 31 patients: 25 in group 1, 6 in group 2. Group 1: 96% male, mean CA age 38 years (range 13–84). Nine patients (36%) presented with arrhythmic storm and three had a lethal outcome; 17 (68%) had spontaneous type 1 Brugada electrocardiography (ECG). An electrophysiology study (EPS) was performed on 11 patients with inducible ventricular fibrillation (VF) in 10, which was prevented by quinidine in 9/10 patients. During follow-up (143 ± 119 months) eight patients experienced appropriate shocks, none while on quinidine. Group 2: all male, age 30–53 years; 4/6 patients had familial history of sudden death age < 50 years. Five patients had spontaneous type 1 Brugada ECG and four were asymptomatic at ICD implantation. EPS was performed in four patients with inducible VF in three. During long-term follow-up, five patients received ≥ 1 appropriate shocks, one had ATP for sustained VT (none taking quinidine). No AE recurred in patients subsequently treated with quinidine.

Conclusions: CA from BrS is apparently a rare occurrence on a national scale and no AE occurred in any patient treated with quinidine.

January 2018
Avishag Laish-Farkash MD PhD, Avi Sabbag MD, Michael Glikson MD, Aharon Glick MD, Vladimir Khalameizer MD, Amos Katz MD and Yoav Michowitz MD

Background: Multiform fascicular tachycardia (FT) was recently described as a ventricular tachycardia (VT) that has a reentrant mechanism using multiple fascicular branches and produces alternate fascicular VT forms. Ablating the respective fascicle may cause a change in the reentrant circuit resulting in a change in morphology. Ablation of the septal fascicle is crucial for successful treatment.

Objectives: To describe four cases of FT in which ablation induced a change in QRS morphologies and aggravated clinical course.

Methods: Four out of 57 consecutive FT cases at three institutions were retrospectively analyzed and found to involve multiform FT. These cases underwent electrophysiological study, fascicular potential mapping, and electroanatomical mapping. All patients initially had FT with right bundle branch block (RBBB) and superior axis morphology.

Results: Radiofrequency catheter ablation (RFCA) targeting the distal left posterior fascicle (LPF) resulted in a second VT with an RBBB-inferior axis morphology that sometimes became faster and/or incessant and/or verapamil-refractory in characteristics. RFCA in the upper septum abolished the second VT with no complications and uneventful long-term follow-up.

Conclusions: The change in FT morphology during ablation may be associated with a change in clinical course when shifting from one route to another and may aggravate symptoms. Targeting of the proximal conduction system (such as bifurcation, LPF, left anterior fascicle, high septal/auxiliary pathway) may serve to solve this problem.

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