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עמוד בית
Sun, 26.05.24

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April 2024
Limor Adler MD MPH, Or Tzadok Zehavi MD, Miriam Parizade PhD, Yair Hershkovitz MD, Menashe Meni Amran MD, Robert Hoffman MD, Tal Hakmon Aronson MD, Erela Rotlevi MD, Bar Cohen MPH, Ilan Yehoshua MD

Background: The prevalence of Group A streptococcus (GAS) carriage among adults is studied less than in children. The variability of reported carriage rates is considerably large and differs among diverse geographic areas and populations.

Objectives: To evaluate the prevalence of GAS carriage among adults in Israel.

Methods: In this prospective study, conducted in a large healthcare maintenance organization in Israel, we obtained pharyngeal cultures from adults attending the clinic without upper respiratory tract complaints or fever. Patient data included sex, age, number of children, and religious sectors.

Results: From May to December 2022, eight family physicians collected a total of 172 throat swabs (86% response rate). The median age was 37 years (range 18–65); 72.7% were females, 22.7% were ultra-Orthodox Jewish, and 69.2% had children. The prevalence of GAS carriage was 6.98%, 95% confidence interval (95%CI) 3.7%–11.9%. GAS carriers were younger (31.7 vs. 39.3 years, P = 0.046), and the majority were ultra-Orthodox Jews (58.3% vs. 20%, P = 0.006). All GAS carriers were from lower socioeconomic status. When assessing risk factors for GAS carriage using multivariate analysis, only being an ultra-Orthodox Jew was positively related to GAS carriage (adjusted odds ratio 5.6, 95%CI 1.67–18.8).

Conclusion: Being an ultra-Orthodox Jew was the single variable associated with a GAS carriage, which may be related to having many children at home and living in overcrowded areas. Primary care physicians in Israel should recognize this situation when examining patients with sore throats, mainly ultra-Orthodox Jews.

November 2022
Johad Khoury MD, Itai Ghersin MD, Eyal Braun MD, Adi Elias MD, Doron Aronson MD, Zaher S. Azzam MD, Fadel Bahouth MD

Background: Current guidelines for the treatment of heart failure with reduced ejection fraction (HFrEF) are based on studies that have excluded or underrepresented older patients.

Objectives: To assess the value of guideline directed medical therapy (GDMT) in HFrEF patients 80 years of age and older.

Methods: A single-center retrospective study included patients hospitalized with a first and primary diagnosis of acute decompensated heart failure (ADHF) and ejection fraction (EF) of ≤ 40%. Patients 80 years of age and older were stratified into two groups: GDMT, defined as treatment at hospital discharge with at least two drugs of the following groups: beta-blockers, angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor (ACEI), angiotensin receptor blocker (ARB), or mineralocorticoid antagonists; and a personalized medicine group, which included patients who were treated with up to one of these drug groups. The primary outcomes were 90-day all-cause mortality, 90-day rehospitalization, and 3-years mortality.

Results: The study included 1152 patients with HFrEF. 254 (22%) patients who were at least 80 years old. Of the group, 123 were GDMT at discharge. When GDMT group was compared to the personalized medicine group, there were no statistically significant differences in terms 90-day mortality (17% vs. 13%, P = 0.169), 90-day readmission (51 % vs. 45.6%, P = 0.27), or 3-year mortality (64.5% vs. 63.3%, P = 0.915).

Conclusions: Adherence to guidelines in the older adult population may not have the same effect as in younger patients who were studied in the randomized clinical trials. Larger prospective studies are needed to further address this issue.

December 2018
Sorel Goland MD, Irena Fugenfirov MD, Igor Volodarsky MD, Hadass Aronson MD, Liaz Zilberman MD, Sara Shimoni MD and Jacob George MD

Background: Early identification of patients with a likelihood of cardiac improvement has important implications for management strategies.

Objectives: To evaluate whether tissue Doppler imaging (TDI) and two-dimensional (2D) strain measures may predict left ventricular (LV) improvement in patients with recent onset dilated cardiomyopathy (ROCM).

Methods: Clinical and comprehensive echo were performed at baseline and at 6 months. Patients who achieved an increase of ≥ 10 LV ejection fraction (LVEF) units and LV reverse remodeling (LVRR) (group 1) and those who improved beyond the device threshold achieving LVEF of ≥ 0.40 (group 2) were compared to patients who did not improve to this level.

Results: Among 37 patients with ROCM (mean age 56.3 ± 12.9 years and LVEF 29.1 ± 7.0%), 48% achieved LVEF ≥ 0.40 and 37.8% demonstrated LVRR. Patients with LVEF improvement ≥ 40% presented at diagnosis with higher LVEF (P = 0.006), smaller LV end-diastolic diameter (LVEDd) (P = 0.04), higher E’ septal (P = 0.02), lower E/E’ ratio (P = 0.02), increased circumferential strain (P = 0.04), and apical rotation (P = 0.009). Apical rotation and LVEDd were found to be independent predictors of LVRR. End-systolic LV volume was a significant predictor of LVEF improvement (≥ 40%).

Conclusions: Nearly half of the patients with ROCM demonstrated cardiac function improvement beyond the device threshold by 6 months. Apical rotation was introduced in our study as 2D strain prognostic parameter and found to be an independent predictor of LVRR. LV size and volume were predictors of LV improvement.

January 2014
Limor Aharonson-Daniel, Dagan Schwartz, Tzipi Hornik-Lurie and Pinchas Halpern
Background: Emergency department (ED) attenders reflect the health of the population served by the hospital and the availability of health care services in the community.

Objectives: To examine the quality and accuracy of diagnoses recorded in the ED in order to appraise its potential utility as a guage of the population's medical needs.

Methods: Using the Delphi process, a preliminary list of health indicators generated by an expert focus group was transformed into a query to the Ministry of Health's database. In parallel, medical charts were reviewed in four hospitals to compare the handwritten diagnosis in the medical record with that recorded on the standard diagnosis "pick list" coding sheet. Quantity and quality of coding were assessed using explicit criteria.

Results: During 2010 a total of 17,761 charts were reviewed; diagnoses were not coded in 42%. The accuracy of existing coding was excellent (mismatch 1%–5%). Database query (2,670,300 visits to 28 hospitals in 2009) demonstrated potential benefits of these data as indicators of regional health needs.

Conclusions: The findings suggest that an increase in the provision of community care may reduce ED attendance. Information on ED visits can be used to support health care planning. A "pick list" form with common diagnoses can facilitate quality recording of diagnoses in a busy ED, profiling the population’s health needs in order to optimize care. Better compliance with the directive to code diagnosis is desired.

October 2013
L. Avisar, A. Shiyovich, L. Aharonson-Daniel and L. Nesher
 Background: Sudden cardiac death is the most common lethal manifestation of heart disease and often is the first and only indicator. Prompt initiation of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) undoubtedly saves lives. Nevertheless, studies report a low competency of medical students in CPR, mainly due to deterioration of skills following training.

Objectives: To evaluate the retention of CPR skills and confidence in delivering CPR by preclinical medical students.

Methods: A questionnaire and the Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) were used to assess confidence and CPR skills among preclinical, second and third-year medical students who had passed a first-aid course during their first year but were not retrained since.

Results: The study group comprised 64 students: 35 were 1 year after training and 29 were 2 years after training. The groups were demographically similar. Preparedness, recollection and confidence in delivering CPR were significantly lower in the 2 years after training group compared to those 1 year after training (P < 0.05). The mean OSCE score was 19.8 ± 5.2 (of 27) lower in those 2 years post- training than those 1 year post-training (17.8 ± 6.35 vs. 21.4 ± 3.4 respectively, P = 0.009). Only 70% passed the OSCE, considerably less in students 2 years post-training than in those 1 year post-training (52% vs. 86%, P < 0.01). Lowest retention was found in checking safety, pulse check, airway opening, rescue breathing and ventilation technique skills. A 1 year interval was chosen by 81% of the participants as the optimal interval for retraining (91% vs. 71% in the 2 years post-training group vs. the 1 year post- training group respectively, P = 0.08).

Conclusions: Confidence and CPR skills of preclinical medical students deteriorate significantly within 1 year post-training, reaching an unacceptable level 2 years post-training. We recommend refresher training at least every year.


February 2013
S. Hamoud, R. Mahamid, M. Halabi, J. Lessick, S. Abbadi, R. Shreter, Z. Keidar, D. Aronson, H. Hammerman and T. Hayek
 Background: Chest pain is one of the most common reasons for emergency department visits and hospital admissions. Chest pain units (CPU) are being incorporated in tertiary hospitals for rapid and effective management of patients with chest pain. In Israel prior to 2010, only one chest pain unit existed in a tertiary hospital.

Objectives: To report our first year experience with a CPU located in an internal medicine department as compared to the year before establishment of the CPU.

Methods: We retrospectively evaluated the medical records of consecutive patients who were admitted to our internal medicine department for the investigation of chest pain for 2 different years: a year before and a year after the establishment of the CPU in the department. We focused on the patients' characteristics and the impact of the CPU regarding the investigational modalities used and the length of in-hospital stay.

Results: In the year before establishment of the CPU, 258 patients were admitted to our department with chest pain, compared to 417 patients admitted to the CPU in the first year of its operation. All patients were followed for serial electrocardiographic and cardiac enzyme testing. All CPU patients (100%) underwent investigation compared to only 171 patients (66%) in the pre-CPU year. During the year pre-CPU, 164 non-invasive tests were performed (0.64 tests per patient) compared to 506 tests (1.2 tests/patient) in the CPU population. Coronary arteriography was performed in 35 patients (14%) during the pre-CPU year, mostly as the first test performed, compared to 61 patients (15%) during the CPU year, mostly as a second test, with only 5 procedures (1.1%) being the first test performed. The length of hospitalization was significantly shorter during the CPU year, 37.8 ± 29.4 hours compared to 66.8 ± 46 hours in the pre-CPU year.

Conclusions: Establishment of a CPU in an internal medicine department significantly decreased the need for invasive coronary arteriography as the first modality for investigating patients admitted with chest pain, significantly decreased the need for invasive procedures (especially where no intervention was performed), and significantly shortened the hospitalization period. CPU is an effective facility for rapid and effective investigation of patients admitted with chest pain. 

September 2010
E. Jaffe, E. Aviel, L. Aharonson-Daniel, M. Nave and H.Y. Knobler

Background: Professional volunteers play a crucial role in reinforcing emergency medical services in Israel. In order to encourage volunteers to return for additional shifts, the organization should provide conditions that will assure the return, particularly at a time of self-risk such as war. In 2009 Israeli emergency medical services (Magen David Adom) were required to increase preparedness in the southern part of the country due to missile attacks on civilian populations, while continuing their routine activities, i.e., responding promptly to emergency events. In order to perform these multiple functions, MDA[1] stations in the towns under attack were strengthened with volunteers from other regions of the country. These volunteers, trained as paramedics, served in 24–48 hour shifts.

Objectives: To identify the factors influencing the willingness of volunteers to return.

Methods: A questionnaire was used to assess the satisfaction of volunteers participating in the reinforcement with regard to their physical environment, job assignment and the actual activity they were involved in. Data were analyzed using SPSS statistical software.

Results: During the 10 days of the study, 121 volunteers reinforced southern MDA stations and 99 (81%) of them responded to the questionnaire. We found that volunteers' willingness to return to do more shifts was affected by their welcome and reception at the station, their job assignment, and their training and preparation for performing the necessary tasks. The sleeping conditions and the number of events they participated in were also contributing factors.

Conclusions: Factors that contribute to the willingness of volunteers to re-volunteer should be taken into account by organizations that rely on them.

[1] MDA = Magen David Adom

D. Mutlak, D. Aronson, J. Lessick, S.A. Reisner, S. Dabbah and Y. Agmon

Background: Trans-aortic pressure gradient in patients with aortic stenosis and left ventricular systolic dysfunction is typically low but occasionally high.

Objectives: To examine the distribution of trans-aortic PG[1] in patients with severe AS[2] and severe LV[3] dysfunction and compare the clinical and echocardiographic characteristics and outcome of patients with high versus low PG.

Methods: Using the echocardiographic laboratory database at our institution, 72 patients with severe AS (aortic valve area ≤ 1.0 cm2) and severe LV dysfunction (LV ejection fraction ≤ 30%) were identified. The characteristics and outcome of these patients were compared.

Results: PG was high (mean PG ≥ 35 mmHg) in 32 patients (44.4%) and low (< 35 mmHg) in 40 (55.6%). Aortic valve area was slightly smaller in patients with high PG (0.63 ± 0.15 vs. 0.75 ± 0.16 cm2 in patients with low PG, P = 0.003), and LV ejection fraction was slightly higher in patients with high PG (26 ± 5 vs. 22 ± 5% in patients with low PG, P = 0.005). During a median follow-up period of 9 months 14 patients (19%) underwent aortic valve replacement and 46 patients (64%) died. Aortic valve replacement was associated with lower mortality (age and gender-adjusted hazard ratio 0.19, 95% confidence interval 0.05–0.82), whereas trans-aortic PG was not (P = 0.41).

Conclusions: A large proportion of patients with severe AS have relatively high trans-aortic PG despite severe LV dysfunction, a finding partially related to more severe AS and better LV function. Trans-aortic PG is not related to outcome in these patients.

[1] PG = pressure gradient

[2] AAS = aortic stenosis

[3] LV = left ventricular

May 2007
L. Aharonson-Daniel, M. Avitzour, A. Giveon and K. Peleg
April 2007
E. Markusohn, A. Roguin, A. Sebbag, D. Aronson, R. Dragu, S. Amikam, M. Boulus, E. Grenadier, A. Kerner, E. Nikolsky, W. Markiewicz, H. Hammerman and M. Kapeliovich

Background: The decision to perform primary percutaneous coronary intervention in unconscious patients resuscitated after out-of-hospital cardiac arrest is challenging because of uncertainty regarding the prognosis of recovery of anoxic brain damage and difficulties in interpretation of ST segment deviations. In ST elevation myocardial infarction patients after OHCA[1], primary PCI[2] is generally considered the only option for reperfusion. There are few published studies and no randomized trial has yet been performed in this specific group of patients.

Objectives: To define the demographic, clinical and angiographic characteristics, and the prognosis of STEMI[3] patients undergoing primary PCI after out-of-hospital cardiac arrest.

Methods: We performed a retrospective analysis of medical records and used the prospectively acquired information from the Rambam Primary Angioplasty Registry (PARR) and the Rambam Intensive Cardiac Care (RICCa) databases.

Results: During the period March1998 to June 2006, 25 STEMI patients (21 men and 4 women, mean age 56 ± 11years) after out-of-hospital cardiac arrest were treated with primary PCI. The location of myocardial infarction was anterior in 13 patients (52%) and non-anterior in 12 (48%). Cardiac arrest was witnessed in 23 patients (92%), but bystander resuscitation was performed in only 2 patients (8%). Eighteen patients (72%) were unconscious on admission, and Glasgow Coma Scale > 5 was noted in 2 patients (8%). Cardiogenic shock on admission was diagnosed in 4 patients (16%). PCI procedure was successful in 22 patients (88%). In-hospital, 30 day, 6 month and 1 year survival was 76%, 76%, 76% and 72%, respectively. In-hospital, 30 day, 6 month and 1 year survival without severe neurological disability was 68%, 68%, 68% and 64%, respectively.

Conclusions: In a selected group of STEMI patients after out-of-hospital cardiac arrest, primary PCI can be performed with a high success rate and provides reasonably good results in terms of short and longer term survival.


[1] OHCA = out-of-hospital cardiac arrest

[2] PCI = percutaneous coronary intervention

[3] STEMI = ST elevation myocardial infarction

September 2006
D. Soffer, J. Klauser, O. Szold, C.I. Schulman, P. Halpern, B. Savitsky, L. Aharonson-Daniel and K. Peleg

Background: The rate of trauma in the elderly is growing.

Objectives: To evaluate the characteristics of non-hip fracture-associated trauma in elderly patients at a level I trauma center.

Methods: The study database of this retrospective cohort study was the trauma registry of a level I trauma center. Trauma patients admitted from January 2001 to December 2003 were stratified into different age groups. Patients with the diagnosis of hip fracture were excluded.

Results: The study group comprised 7629 patients. The non-hip fracture elderly group consisted of 1067 patients, 63.3% women and 36.7% men. The predominant mechanism of injury was falls (70.5%) and most of the injuries were blunt (94.1%). Injury Severity Score was found to increase significantly with age. The average mortality rate among the elderly was 6.1%. Age, ISS[1], Glasgow Coma Score on admission, and systolic blood pressure on admission were found to be independent predictors of mortality.

Conclusions: Falls remain the predominant cause of injury in the elderly. Since risk factors for mortality can be identified, an effective community prevention program can help combat the future expected increase in morbidity and mortality associated with trauma in the elderly.

[1] ISS = Injury Severity Score

August 2005
K. Peleg, Y. Kluger, A. Giveon, Israel Trauma Group, and L. Aharonson-Daniel

Background: The proportion of motorcyclists injured in road accidents in Israel is larger than their proportion among road users.

Objectives: To identify factors contributing to the risk of injury for motorcyclists as compared to drivers of other motor vehicles.

Methods: We retrieved and analyzed National Trauma Registry data on drivers, aged 16 and above, who were involved in traffic accidents and hospitalized between 1 January 1997 and 30 June 2003.

Results: The study group comprised 10,967 patients: 3,055 (28%) were motorcyclists and 7,912 (72%) were drivers of other motor vehicles. A multiple logistic regression revealed that Tel Aviv, the busiest metropolitan city in Israel, is a risk for motorcycle injury as compared to other regions; males have an increased risk compared to females; and age is a protecting factor since the risk of injury as a motorcyclist decreases as age increases. Nevertheless, the population of injured motorcyclists in Tel Aviv was significantly older (mean age 32.5 years vs. 28.6 elsewhere; t-test P < 0.0001). Twenty percent (n=156) of the injured motorcyclists in Tel Aviv were injured while working, compared to 9.5% (n=217) in other regions (chi-square P < 0.0001). Motorcycle injuries in Tel Aviv were of lower severity (7.7% vs. 16.4% according to the Injury Severity Scale 16+, c2 P < 0.0001), and had lower inpatient death rates (1.2% vs. 2.5%, c2 P = 0.001).

Conclusions: Tel Aviv is a risk for motorcycle injury compared to other regions, males have an increased risk compared to females, and age is a protecting factor. The proportion of motorcyclists in Tel Aviv injured while working is double that in other regions 

June 2004
F. Sikron, A. Giveon, L. Aharonson-Daniel and K. Peleg

Background: Although the home is perceived to be a safe haven, it is a scene of numerous injuries.

Objectives: To characterize home injury in Israel, the victims, injury circumstances and outcomes, and to identify groups at high risk for injury in order to focus future interventions and thus effectively prevent these injuries and their associated hospitalizations.

Methods: We analyzed 5 year records (1997–2001) from the National Trauma Registry of all patients arriving at eight trauma centers following home injury and admitted to hospital, transferred to another medical center or died in the emergency department.

Results: The study group included 26,921 patients, constituting 34% of all unintentional hospitalized trauma patients. Twenty-seven percent were children (0–4 years) and 37% were elderly (≥ 65 years) – the two age groups whose home injury accounted for most of the trauma injuries. Among children more boys (59%) than girls (41%) were injured, but the opposite was true for the elderly (30% males and 70% females). The share of females among the home-injured increased with age. Falls caused 79% of all home injuries (97% among the elderly) and burns 9%, increasing to 18% among children (0–4 years). Among non-Jewish home-injured patients, infants predominated (50% compared to 20% among Jews). Moderate to critical injuries amounted for 42%, with 38% of the home injured and 60% of the elderly requiring surgery. The clinical and economic consequences of home injuries differed according to the type of injury, with burns carrying the heaviest toll of prolonged intensive care and hospital stay. Overall, hospital stay averaged 6.2 days per patient (median 3 days).

Conclusions: Falls among the elderly, burns among children, and a high prevalence of hospitalization among non-Jewish children define groups at high risk for home injuries. Prevention programs should be based on these findings and should focus on the more vulnerable groups.

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