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עמוד בית
Wed, 17.07.24

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November 2023
Nitsa Nacasch MD, Netta Shoenfeld MSW, Ilanit Wul BA, Michael Polliack MD, Mark Weiser MD

On Saturday, 7 October 2023, the Jewish holiday of Simchat Torah, our entire country woke to a reality of the worst terror attacks it has ever known, despite its long history of wars and terror. These horrific attacks included killing and burning babies, children, women, men, and the elderly; raping women; beheading babies; destroying settlements; and kidnapping more than 240 civilians and soldiers. The severe traumatic events created different circles of those exposed to trauma. In each group, the intensity of the trauma was different and had different characteristics.

August 2023
Netta Shoenfeld BA, Nancy Agmon-Levin MD, David R. Serfaty MD, Revital Mann MD, Bat-Sheva Porat Katz MD, Rael D. Strous MD MHA

Background: While several studies have noted smell impairment in schizophrenia, it is unclear whether this impairment extends to acute psychosis and whether it is associated with more severe illness as expressed in extended hospitalization.

Objectives: To evaluate the olfactory function of patients in an acute psychotic state and correlate it with clinical symptomatology and length of hospitalization.

Methods: Olfactory function was assessed in 20 patients with schizophrenia in their first week of hospital admission for acute psychosis compared with matched controls. Olfaction was evaluated via three stages: threshold, discrimination, and identification of different odors utilizing the Sniffin' Sticks test battery.

Results: Schizophrenia patients scored significantly lower on total smell score, discrimination, and identification abilities. A significant association was observed between hospitalization duration and total smell score and smell discrimination. No significant associations between smell and clinical symptomatology were observed.

Conclusions: Study observations confirm impaired sense of smell in schizophrenia patients and suggest that smell impairment may be a potential marker of more serious illness as expressed in longer hospital stay.

March 2023
Dana Arnheim MBBS BA, Arad Dotan BSc, Netta Shoenfeld MSW, Yehuda Shoenfeld MD FRCP MaACR

The interplay between post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and autoimmunity is well known. One of the contributors leading to immune disorders is autonomic dysregulation, which is characterized by attenuated parasympathetic and elevated sympathetic systems. In this review, we described evidence regarding the relationship between stress, PTSD, autonomic dysfunction, and autoimmunity. Stress is a physiological response, which is functional for our being. The implication of dysfunction in stress response may be a cause of disease development. We described the fundamental role of the pathological high levels of stress in PTSD as a mediator factor that contributes to autonomic dysfunction, which as a result may lead to autoimmunity. Systemic lupus erythematosus, rheumatoid arthritis, and type 1 diabetes are some of the autoimmune diseases PTSD patients are at higher risk of developing. Notably, some autoimmune diseases are shown to increase the susceptibility to develop PTSD, which may indicate a bidirectional influence. In addition, we elaborated on stress as a major component in both fibromyalgia and PTSD, as there are overlaps between the pathogenesis of fibromyalgia and PTSD. Underlying chronic low-grade inflammation, which characterizes PTSD patients, may be a potential target and biomarker in treating PTSD patients. We believe that chronic low-grade inflammation, high concentrations of cytokines, and other inflammatory biomarkers, which characterize PTSD patients, may be potential targets and biomarkers in the treatment of PTSD patients and part of the PTSD diagnostic criteria.

February 2012
N. Shoenfeld, O. Rosenberg, M. Kotler and P.N. Dannon

The phenomenon of hair pulling has been recognized for centuries, yet the true prevalence of trichotillomania (TTM) is largely unknown and the topic has been sparsely studied. TTM is classified as an impulse-control disorder despite much debate about its etiology. In this review we summarize the different hypotheses, including impulse-control disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorders, behavioral problems and addiction, and the appropriate treatment methods. The combination of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors and antipsychotic medications are shown to be most effective. Treatment with anti-addiction drugs seems relevant. Further research is needed to increase our knowledge regarding the etiology of TTM.

July 2009
N. Agmon-Levin, B. Gilburd, S. Kivity, B.S. Porat Katz, I. Flitman-Katzevman, N. Shoenfeld, D. Paran, P. Langevitz and Y. Shoenfeld

Background: Anti-ribosomal-P antibodies have been associated with central nervous manifestations of systemic lupus erythematosus. However, inconsistencies in their prevalence and clinical correlations have become an obstacle to their use as a diagnostic marker of the disease. This lack of consistency might stem from several factors, such as the lag period between clinical manifestations and the time blood was drawn, or the different methods used for antibodies detection.

Objectives: To evaluate three different enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay tests for the detection of anti-Rib-P Abs[1] in patients with SLE[2] and normal controls.

Methods: Sera from 50 SLE outpatients and 50 healthy subjects were tested with three ELISA[3] kits: Kit-1, which uses synthetic peptide comprising the 22 C-terminal amino-acids; Kit-2, which uses native human ribosomal proteins (P0, P1, P2); and Kit-3, which is coated with affinity-purified human ribosomal proteins. ELISA studies were performed according to the manufacturers' instructions.

Results: The prevalence of anti-Rib-P Abs in SLE patients and controls was 30% vs. 0%, 17% vs. 21%, and 30% vs. 14% in kits 1-3 respectively. Anti-Rib-P Abs detected by Kit-1 correlated with the SLEDAI score (SLE Disease Activity Index). No correlation between prior CNS[4] manifestations and anti-Rib-P Abs was observed.

Conclusions: A significant difference was documented between the ELISA kits used for the detection of anti-Rib-P Abs. A correlation was found between these antibodies (evaluated by Kit-1) and concurrent SLEDAI scores, in contrast to the lack of correlation with previous CNS manifestations. This supports the notion of "active serology" that is evaluated at the same time manifestations are present, as well as the need for standardization of laboratory assays in the future that enable a better assessment of anti-Rib-P Abs presence and clinical correlation. 



 




[1] anti-Rib-P Abs = anti-ribosomal-P antibodies

[2] SLE = systemic lupus erythematosus

[3] ELISA = enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay

[4] CNS = central nervous system

 



 
March 2008
N. Shoenfeld and R.D. Strous

The biblical story of Samson may be understood at various levels and from different perspectives. Since the story of Samson in the Bible is sketchily drawn, the interpretations of the narrative are numerous. One version, according to David Grossman, a contemporary writer and liberal Israeli political activist, regards Samson critically, viewing him as a tormented individual who opts to end his life in order to end his suffering. Another version is that of Ze’ev Jabotinsky, a twentieth century author and nationalistic Jewish political activist, who regards Samson as a heroic figure exemplifying the ultimate Jewish hero who killed himself to help his people. While suicide is considered a tragic event, viewed as the outcome of an unstable state of mind from a psychopathological point of view, and a controversial issue in Judaism (as in other religions), there is value in examining how each of these authors explains the act. Since the personal and political opinions of the authors influenced their interpretations, the discussion will briefly expound on their biographies. A comparison between their two versions of the narrative will be made. A word of caution is introduced regarding the merits and demerits of artistic and creative analysis of the biblical narrative.

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