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עמוד בית
Tue, 25.06.24

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April 2021
Elias Hakalehto MSc PhD

This mini review includes two case descriptions. It introduces the use of chicken egg yolk antibody (IgY) solutions in the prevention and cure of viral and bacterial infections. Application for the protection against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2), rotavirus, and influenza viruses, as well as for the eradication of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, caries, various enteric bacteria and other pathogens, and toxins have been developed. This approach is a fast, reliable, safe, and tested method for producing molecular shield and protection against emerging pathogens and epidemics. In the current pandemic situation caused by coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19), this method of passive immunization could be applied for rapid protection against modifiable agents. The specific IgY antibodies start to accumulate into egg yolks about 3 weeks after the immunization of the chicken. The product can be collected safely, as the antigen is not found in the eggs. This method for microbial safety uses natural means and commonly used food substances, which have been tested and could be produced for both blocking epidemics and applying personalized medicine

Michal A. Julius MD, Dror Cantrell MD, Saleh Sharif MD, Dana Zelnik Yovel MD, and Micha J. Rapoport MD

Coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID‐19) is recognized as a respiratory illness, which includes pulmonary consolidations, hypoxemic states, and hypercoagulopathic tendencies with a broad clinical severity. Recently, more reports have described post-infection manifestations. These include multi-system inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) with more than 400 cases published since the start of the coronavirus disease pandemic. In October 2020, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) published 27 cases [1] describing the new multi-system inflammatory syndrome in adults (MIS-A). Nine of the cases were reported directly to the CDC, 7 from published case reports and another 11 patients found in three distinct case series

Eytan Damari MD, Alon Farfel MD, Itai Berger MD, Reut Ron, and Yonatan Yeshayahu MD

Background: The effect of extended shift length on pediatric residency is controversial. Israeli residents perform shifts extending up to 26 hours, a practice leading to general dissatisfaction. In early 2020, during the coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, many Israeli hospitals transitioned from 26-hour shifts to 13-hour shifts in fixed teams (capsules) followed by a 24-hour rest period at home. The regulation changes enacted by the Israeli government during the COVID-19 pandemic provided a rare opportunity to assess perception by residents regarding length of shifts before and after the change.

Objectives: To assess perception of pediatric residency in three aspects: resident wellness, ability to deliver quality healthcare, and acquisition of medical education following the change to the shorter shifts model.

Methods: We performed a prospective observational study among pediatric residents. Residents completed an online self-assessment questionnaire before and after the COVID-19 emergency regulations changed toward shorter shifts.

Results: Sixty-seven residents answered the questionnaires before (37) and after (30) the shift changes. The average score was significantly better for the 13-hour shifts versus the 26-hour shifts, except for questions regarding available time for research. There was a positive perception regarding the shorter night shifts model among pediatric residents, with an increase in general satisfaction and improvement in perception of general wellness, ability to deliver quality healthcare, and medical education acquisition.

Conclusions: Following the change to shorter shift length, perception of pediatric residents included improvement in wellness, ability to deliver quality healthcare, and availability of medical education

Michal Vinker-Shuster MD, Ephraim S. Grossman PhD, and Yonatan Yeshayahu MD

Background: The coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) social-distancing strategy, including 7 weeks of strict lockdown, enabled an extraordinary test of stay-at-home regulations, which forced a sedentary lifestyle on all children and adolescents.

Objectives: To assess the lockdown effect on pediatric weight.

Methods: A retrospective-prospective cohort study at our hospital’s pediatric outpatient clinics following the COVID-19 lockdown. Patients aged 0–18 years visiting the clinic were weighed and previous weight and other clinical data were collected from the medical charts. Weight-percentile-for-age standardization was calculated according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization growth tables. Pre- and post-lockdown weight-percentiles-for-age were compared using paired t-test. Multivariate analysis was conducted using linear regression model.

Results: The study was comprised of 229 patients; 117/229 (51.1%) were boys, 60/229 (26.2%) aged under 6 years. Total mean weight-percentile was significantly higher following the lockdown (40.44 vs. 38.82, respectively, P = 0.029). Boys had a significant post-lockdown weight-percentile rise (37.66 vs. 34.42, P = 0.014), whereas girls had higher baseline pre-quarantine weight-percentile of 43.42, which did not change. Patients younger than 6 years had a significant increase in weight-percentiles (39.18 vs. 33.58, P = 0.021). In multivariate analysis these correlations were preserved.

Conclusions: A general weight gain among children was noted, especially in boys during the lockdown, with substantial effect under the age of 6 years. This collateral side-effect should be considered in further quarantine regulations

March 2021
Varvara A. Ryabkova, Leonid P. Churilov MD, and Yehuda Shoenfeld MD FRCP MACR
Antonio Antico MD, Maria Piera Panozzo PhD, Maira Zoppelletto PhD, Valentina Di Giacomo PhD, Francesca Merola PhD, and Nicola Bizzaro MD
Gassan Moady MD MPH and Shaul Atar MD

Background: Takotsubo syndrome (TTS) is a non-ischemic cardiomyopathy characterized by an acute reversible left ventricular dysfunction with typical apical ballooning, usually with subsequent complete spontaneous recovery. TTS may be triggered by several physical and emotional stressors. The name Covidsubo was recently adopted to describe this emerging entity. TTS during quarantine may be a reasonable outcome of the overwhelming stress and fear of this pandemic. However, according to the current literature, conflicting results have been reported regarding the incidence of this syndrome during the first wave of the pandemic, and further studies are needed. High index of suspicion is needed to identify patients during the next waves of the pandemic, particularly given the need for minimizing imaging modalities and contact with the patients.

Objectives: To describe two cases of TTS triggered by quarantine during the coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.

Methods: Two patients (age 81 years and 70 years) were admitted to our medical center with severe chest pain with normal blood pressure and heart rate.

Results: TTS should always be in the differential diagnosis in patients presenting with chest pain suspected to be from coronary origin. Based on the typical clinical, echocardiographic, and angiographic findings, we assumed TTS.

Conclusions: The only prominent stressor in the two cases in this article was the stress accompanying quarantine.

Laura A. Montiel-Cervantes DSc, Gabriela Medina MSc, María Pilar Cruz-Domínguez DSc, Sonia-Mayra Pérez-Tapia DSc, María C. Jiménez-Martínez DSc, Hugo-Iván Arrieta-Oliva DSc, Gregorio Carballo-Uicab DSc, Laura López-Pelcastre MD, and Rosa Camacho-Sandoval DSc

Background: Immune cell counts in blood in severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection may be useful prognostic biomarkers of disease severity, mortality, and response to treatment.

Objectives: To analyze sub-populations of lymphocytes at hospital admission in survivors and deceased from severe pneumonia due to coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19).

Methods: We conducted a cross-sectional study of healthcare workers confirmed with SARS-CoV-2 in convalescents (control group) and healthy controls (HC) diagnosed with severe COVID-19. Serum samples were taken at hospital admission and after recovery. Serum samples ≥ 25 days after onset of symptoms were analyzed for lymphocyte subpopulations through flow cytometry. Descriptive statistics, Kruskall-Wallis test, receiver operating characteristic curve, calculation of sensitivity, specificity, predictive values, and Kaplan-Meier analysis were performed.

Results: We included 337 patients: 120 HC, 127 convalescents, and 90 severe COVID-19 disease patients (50 survivors, 40 deceased). For T cells, total lymphocytes ≥ 800/μL, CD3+ ≥ 400/μL, CD4+ ≥ 180/μL, CD8+ ≥ 150/μL, B cells CD19+ ≥ 80/μL, and NK ≥ 34/μL subsets were associated with survival in severe COVID-19 disease patients. All subtypes of lymphocytes had higher concentrations in survivors than deceased, but similar between HC and convalescents. Leukocytes ≥ 10.150/μL or neutrophils ≥ 10,000/μL were associated with increased mortality. The neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio (NLR) ≥ 8.5 increased the probability of death in severe COVID-19 (odds ratio 11.68).

Conclusions: Total lymphocytes; NLR; and levels of CD3+, CD4+, CD8+, and NK cells are useful as biomarkers of survival or mortality in severe COVID-19 disease and commonly reach normal levels in convalescents.

February 2021
Andris Jumtins MD PhD, Ruta Jakusonoka MD PhD, Andris Vikmanis MD PhD, Dmitrijs Grigorjevs MD, Modris Ciems MD, Ivans Krupenko MD, and Alexander Lerner MD PhD

Background: The coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) crisis has affected how hospitals work and has had an effect on orthopedic surgery.

Objectives: To compare patient management and low-energy and high-energy trauma treatment at two orthopedic trauma units during the COVID-19 crisis and to clarify resource demands and preparedness in orthopedic clinics during the state of emergency caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Methods: This retrospective study was conducted at two orthopedic trauma units from 14 March 2019 to 14 April 2019 and from 14 March 2020 to 14 April 2020.

Results: The proportion of patients admitted in the multi-trauma orthopedic unit decreased by one-third, the mean time interval from admission to surgery significantly decreased, and the number of surgeries and mean length of stay in hospital decreased in 2020 compared to the same test period in 2019. In the orthopedic trauma unit, the number of patients and surgeries also decreased.

Conclusions: Our study highlights changes in orthopedic injury characteristics in two orthopedic units during the COVID-19 crisis in Latvia and compares these changes to data from the same time period one year earlier.

Gal Antman MD, Alon Tiosano MD, and Irit Bahar MD

Background: The coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) pandemic presented a major medical management challenge to ophthalmology departments throughout Israel.

Objectives: To examine the managerial challenges, actions taken, and insights of directors of ophthalmology departments in Israel during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Methods: We conducted a cross sectional survey of directors of ophthalmology departments during the COVID-19 pandemic while the Israeli population was quarantined.

Results: All 21 directors answered the survey. The majority of the COVID-19 admissions were located in the center of Israel (53%) and Jerusalem (30%). E-communication took a central role in coping with the pandemic with 80% of the directors satisfied with this form of communication; 75% reported a reduction in clinical and surgery volume of at least 25%, and 40% reported reallocations of manpower. Most of the medical staff used gloves, a face shield, disposable robe, and a mask with no uniformity across departments. Cross satisfaction was noted regarding a hospital’s ability to equip the departments. Lack of preparation for post-pandemic era was reported by all directors, but one (95%). Directors sought guidelines and uniformity regarding outpatient referral to the hospital (p = 0.035)

Conclusions: Guidelines via safe digital platforms aid in management decisions and uniformity across departments. Advanced preparation is needed to prevent adverse clinical outcomes and to maintain treatment continuum. Our results can be used to guide and help improve the preparedness of ophthalmology departments during COVID-19 and for future pandemics.

Mordehay Cordoba MD, Roi Anteby MD, Yaniv Zager MD, Yiftach Barash MD, Eyal Klang MD, Roy Nadler MD, Imri Amiel MD, Mordechai Gutman MD FACS, Nir Horesh MD, Nimrod Aviran MD, and Yoram Klein MD

Background: The novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic changed medical environments worldwide.

Objectives: To evaluate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on trauma-related visits to the emergency department (ED).

Methods: A single tertiary center retrospective study was conducted that compared ED attendance of patients with injury-related morbidity between March 2020 (COVID-19 outbreak) and pre-COVID-19 periods: February 2020 and the same 2 months in 2018 and 2019.

Results: Overall, 6513 patients were included in the study. During the COVID-19 outbreak, the daily number of patients visiting the ED for acute trauma declined by 40% compared to the average in previous months (P < 0.01). A strong negative correlation was found between the number of trauma-related ED visits and the log number of confirmed cases of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) in Israel (Pearson's r = -0.63, P < 0.01). In the COVID-19 period there was a significant change in the proportion of elderly patients (7% increase, P = 0.002), admissions ratio (12% increase, P < 0.001), and patients brought by emergency medical services (10% increase, P < 0.001). The number of motor vehicle accident related injury declined by 45% (P < 0.01).

Conclusions: A significant reduction in the number of trauma patients presenting to the ED occurred during the COVID-19 pandemic, yet trauma-related admissions were on the rise

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