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עמוד בית
Wed, 12.06.24

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February 2003
Y. Turgeman, S. Atar, K. Suleiman, A. Feldman, L. Bloch, N. A. Freedberg, D. Antonelli, M. Jabaren and T. Rosenfeld

Background: Current clinical guidelines restrict catheterization laboratory activity without on-site surgical backup. Recent improvements in technical equipment and pharmacologic adjunctive therapy increase the safety margins of diagnostic and therapeutic cardiac catheterization.

Objective: To analyze the reasons for urgent cardiac surgery and mortality in the different phases of our laboratory’s activity in the last 11 years, and examine the impact of the new interventional and therapeutic modalities on the current need for on-site cardiac surgical backup.

Methods: We retrospectively reviewed the mortality and need for urgent cardiac surgery (up to 12 hours post-catheterization) through five phases of our laboratory’s activity: a) diagnostic (years 1989–2000), b) valvuloplasties and other non-coronary interventions (1990–2000), c) percutaneous-only balloon angioplasty (1992–1994), d) coronary stenting (1994–2000), and e) use of IIb/IIIa antagonists and thienopiridine drugs (1996–2000).

Results: Forty-eight patients (0.45%) required urgent cardiac surgery during phase 1, of whom 40 (83%) had acute coronary syndromes with left main coronary artery stenosis or the equivalent, and 8 (17%) had mechanical complications of acute myocardial infarction. Two patients died (0.02%) during diagnostic procedures. In phase 2, eight patients (2.9%) were referred for urgent cardiac surgery due to either cardiac tamponade or severe mitral regurgitation, and two patients (0.7%) died. The combined need for urgent surgery and mortality was significantly lower in phase 4 plus 5 as compared to phase 3 (3% vs. 0.85%, P = 0.006).

Conclusion: In the current era using coronary stents and potent antithrombotic drugs, after gaining experience and crossing the learning curve limits, complex cardiac therapeutic interventions can safely be performed without on-site surgical backup.

D. Lev-Chelouche, B. Sagie, A. Keidar, J. M. Klausner and A. Szold

Background: Developments in laparoscopic surgery have rendered it an efficient tool for many complex surgical procedures. In the last few years, laparoscopic adrenalectomy has become a more viable option for removal of adrenal pathology, with many surgeons preferring it to the conventional open technique.

Objectives: To describe the indications, technique, complications and follow-up of patients undergoing laparoscopic adrenalectomy in our department.

Methods: The hospital files of 30 patients who underwent the procedure were reviewed. There were 19 females and 11 males with a mean age of 45 years. Indications for surgery differed and included hypersecreting adenoma, pheochromocytoma, suspected malignancy, and incidentaloma.

Results: Of the 31 laparoscopic adrenalectomies performed, 11 were right, 18 were left, and 1 was bilateral. The conversion rate to an open procedure was 3%. The mean duration of procedure was 120 minutes. Only one patient required blood transfusion. Complications occurred in 20% of patients, all reversible. There was no mortality. Mean hospitalization duration was 3.4 days, and median follow-up 17 months. There were no late complications. All patients operated on for benign diseases are alive.

Conclusions: Laparoscopic adrenalectomy appears to be a useful tool for the treatment of a range of adrenal pathologies.

January 2003
I. Caspi, M. Levinkopf and J. Nerubay

Background: Damage to the intervertebral disk is usually corrected by means of a prosthesis.

Objectives: To report the outcome of the artificial lumbar disk replacement with the Charité SB III disk prosthesis in 20 patients after a 48 month follow-up.

Methods: The 20 patients were evaluated clinically and radiographically during this period. Preoperative diagnosis included degenerative diskopathy in 17 patients and failed posterior conventional diskectomy in 3. The prosthesis was implanted at one level in 17 patients and bi-level implantation was performed in the other 3 patients.

Results: Eighty percent of patients reported satisfactory to very good results. Poor results were reported by four patients, one of whom underwent posterolateral fusion and another is waiting for the same operation. There were two dislocations of the prosthesis followed by immediate revision surgery.

Conclusions: Contraindications for surgery appear to be the principal cause of failure rather than the prosthesis itself.

M. Huerta, R.D. Balicer and A. Leventhal

During September 2002, Israel began its current revaccination program against smallpox, targeting previously vaccinated “first responders” among medical and emergency workers. In order to identify the potential strengths and weaknesses of this program and the conditions under which critical decisions were reached, we conducted a SWOT analysis of the current Israeli revaccination program, designed to identify its intrinsic strengths and weaknesses, as well as opportunities for its success and threats against it. SWOT analysis – a practical tool for the study of public health policy decisions and the social and political contexts in which they are reached - revealed clear and substantial strengths and weaknesses of the current smallpox revaccination program, intrinsic to the vaccine itself. A number of threats were identified that may jeopardize the success of the current program, chief among them the appearance of severe complications of vaccination. Our finding of a lack of a generation of knowledge on smallpox vaccination urgently calls for improved physician education and dissipation of misconceptions that are prevalent in the public today.

E. Zalzstein, A. Wagshal, N. Zucker, A. Levitas, I.E. Ovsyshcher and A. Katz
O. Shovman, Y. Levi, S. Tal and Y. Shoenfeld
December 2002
JoeÈ l Zlotogora MD PhD, Yona Amitai MD, Dorit Nitzan Kaluski MD MPH RD and Alex Leventhal MD MPH MPA

Background: Open neural tube defects are among the most common malformations of the fetus. Secondary prevention by early diagnosis during pregnancy and abortion of affected fetuses result in a marked reduction of NTD incidence at birth. The dramatic effect of folic acid for primary prevention of these defects led to recommendations for folic acid supplementation in women of reproductive age.

Objective: To describe the epidemiologic features of NTD in Israel in 1999±2000.

Methods: A national registry of NTD was begun in 1999. During the years 1999±2000, a non-syndromic NTD was diagnosed in at least 394 pregnancies (166 anencephaly, 166 spina bifida, 43 encephalo-cele, and 19 with other types of NTD). The religious-ethnic affiliation was known in 392 cases (209 Jews and 183 non-Jews).

Results: Despite a marked decline in the rate of NTD at birth in the last few decades, the total rates during pregnancy did not change significantly, demonstrating that the changes were secondary to termination of affected pregnancies. At birth, NTD were almost four times more frequent among non-Jews (3.6 per 10,000 live births for anencephaly and 5.9 for spina bifida) than among Jews (anencephaly 1/10,000 live births, spina bifida 1.4/10,000 live births). The complete data of the registry showed an approximately twofold difference in the overall rates during pregnancy between Jews (anencephaly 5.3, spina bifida 4.6, total 11/10,000 live births) and non-Jews (anencephaly 8.8, spina bifida 10.3, total 22.3/10,000 live births). The registry demon-strated that the significant differences in NTD incidence observed at birth between Jews and non-Jews are secondary to a combined effect of a higher frequency of the malformations among non-Jews and a lower proportion of termination of affected pregnancies among non-Jews.

Conclusions: The data presented here will serve as a basis for evaluating the impact of the Ministry of Health recommendations for folic acid supplementation on the incidence of NTD.

Shlomo Eliyahu MD, Ehud Weiner MD, Zohar Nachum MD and Eliezer Shalev MD.

Background: Prematurity remains the most significant cause of neonatal morbidity and mortality. Knowing which group of women is at risk for developing preterm labor will define a target population for better prenatal care and prevention modalities.

Objective: To examine whether preterm delivery rates are associated with ethnicity, age, parity, and style of living.

Methods: We conducted a longitudinal case series examining obstetric and demographic data of 17,493 deliveries that occurred between June 1994 and May 1999. All deliveries were performed in the obstetric department of HaEmek Medical Center (Afula, Israel), which serves as a referral center. The main outcome measures were preterm delivery, as related to the women's ethnicity, age parity, and style of living ± namely, town, village, or kibbutz.

Results: The overall preterm delivery rate was 8.5%. The preterm delivery rate in non-Jewish women (10.5%) was higher than in Jewish women (7.1%) (P < 0.00001). The preterm delivery rate in women younger than 20 or older than 40 (12.5%) was much higher than in women between the ages of 21 and 40 (8.0%) (P< 0.00001). Grand-multipara women (>8) had a higher preterm delivery rate (13.8%) than less parous women (8.5%) (P < 0.012). Style of living was also associated with the preterm delivery rate (P< 0.00001): kibbutz 5.5%, Jewish towns 7.8%, non-Jewish towns 8.7%, Jewish villages 6.7%, and non-Jewish villages 11.0%.

Conclusions: Style of living, ethnicity, age and parity are statistically significant risk factors for preterm delivery in our area. These factors provide a more definable target population for better prenatal care.

November 2002
Jacob Cohen, MSc, Lia Supino-Rosin, MSc, Eran Barzilay, BSc, Ronit Eisen-Lev, DMD, Moshe Mittelman, MD and Drorit Neumann, PhD
Alexander Gorshtein, MD, Yair Levy, MD and Yehuda Shoenfeld, MD
Gabriel S. Breuer, MD, David Raveh, MD, Bernard Rudensky, PhD, Raina Rosenberg, MD, Rose Ruchlemer, MD and Jonathan Halevy, MD
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