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עמוד בית
Thu, 07.12.23

Search results

April 2011
November 2010
U. Katzenell, E. Bakshi, I. Ashkenazi, Y. Bar-Dayan, E. Yeheskeli and E. Eviatar

Background: The criteria for tonsillectomy for recurrent tonsillitis were established by prospective studies in the pediatric population and are applied to adults as well. No studies have been conducted to assess whether these guidelines are followed. 

Objectives: To examine the eligibility for tonsillectomy of tonsillectomized patients who were referred because of recurrent acute tonsillitis.

Methods: A retrospective case series in an ambulatory military otolaryngology clinic was conducted, and the medical records of 44 tonsillectomized patients who suffered from throat infections in the year before surgery were analyzed. The number of tonsillar infections that met the referral criteria was counted.

Results: The average number of throat infections that met the referral criteria was 1.89 per year. The average number of visits to the clinic due to upper respiratory tract infection was 12.92 (range 2–36) per year. The average number of visits for any cause was 45.13 (range 6–64) per year. One patient with eight documented throat infections met the criteria of more than six infections in the last year.

Conclusion: Although the referral criteria were not strictly met, we speculate that surgery was probably beneficial. This study shows that the indications for tonsillectomy referral are not strictly followed, and that new criteria for referral of adults for tonsillectomy need to be established.

January 2010
E. Bilavsky, H. Yarden-Bilavsky D.S. Shouval, N. Fisch, B-Z. Garty, S. Ashkenazi and J. Amir

Background: Secondary thrombocytosis is associated with a variety of clinical conditions, one of which is lower respiratory tract infection. However, reports on thrombocytosis induced by viral infections are scarce.

Objectives: To assess the rate of thrombocytosis (platelet count > 500 x 109/L) in hospitalized infants with bronchiolitis and to investigate its potential role as an early marker of respiratory syncytial virus infection.

Methods: Clinical data on 469 infants aged ≤ 4 months who were hospitalized for bronchiolitis were collected prospectively and compared between RSV[1]-positive and RSV-negative infants.

Results: The rate of thrombocytosis was significantly higher in RSV-positive than RSV-negative infants (41.3% vs. 29.2%, P = 0.031). The odds ratio of an infant with bronchiolitis and thrombocytosis to have a positive RSV infection compared to an infant with bronchiolitis and a normal platelet count was 1.7 (P = 0.023, 95% confidence interval 1.07–2.72). There was no significant difference in mean platelet count between the two groups.

Conclusions: RSV-positive bronchiolitis in hospitalized young infants is associated with thrombocytosis.

[1] RSV = respiratory syncytial virus

November 2009
N. Fisch, S. Ashkenazi and M. Davidovits

Background: Although febrile urinary tract infections are very common in young children, the need for antimicrobial prophylaxis and evaluation following a first event is controversial.

Objectives: To assess the approach of leading pediatric specialists throughout Israel.

Methods: A questionnaire regarding the approach to antibiotic prophylaxis and diagnostic evaluation following a first event of febrile UTI[1], according to age and underlying renal abnormality, was sent to all 58 directors of departments of pediatrics, units of pediatric infectious diseases and pediatric nephrology in Israel.

Results: Fifty-six directors (96%) responded. Most prescribed prophylactic antibiotics after UTI. Heads of infectious disease departments prescribed less prophylaxis following UTI at the age of 18 months than heads of pediatrics or heads of pediatric nephrology units (34% vs. 72–75%, P = 0.018), but more often in cases of severe vesico-ureteral reflux without UTI. Cephalosporins were used prophylactically more often by directors of pediatrics compared to heads of pediatric nephrology units (71% vs. 38%, P = 0.048); the latter used non-beta-lactam prophylaxis (61% vs. 23%, P = 0.013) more often. Most pediatricians used renal sonography for evaluation; renal scan was used more commonly by pediatric nephrologists.

Conclusions: The administration of prophylactic antibiotics after UTI is still common practice among pediatric opinion leaders, although the specific approach differs by subspecialty. According to up-to-date evidence-based data, educational efforts are needed to formulate and implement judicious guidelines.


[1] UTI = urinary tract infection

September 2009
Leonid Barski MD1, Roman Nevzorov MD1, Alan Jotkowitz MD1, Elena Shleyfer MD1 and Yair Liel MD2
February 2008
B. Kessel, K. Peleg, Y. Hershekovitz, T. Khashan, A. Givon, I. Ashkenazi and R. Alfici

Background: Non-operative management following abdominal stab wounds is possible in selected patients who are both hemodynamically stable and do not have signs of peritonitis. However, the rate of failure of non-operative management is higher in Israel than in western countries.

Objectives: To assess the patterns of injury following abdominal stabbing.

Methods: Data from the Israeli Trauma Registry were used to identify all patients with abdominal stab injury admitted to eight different trauma centers between 1997 and 2004.

Results: The number of patients admitted per year more than doubled between 1997 and 2004, from 257 to 599. The percentage of patients with severe injury (Index Severity Score ≥ 16) increased from 9.4% to 19.0%. The incidence of multiple stab injuries almost doubled, from 37% to 62%.

Conclusions: Review of the data in the Israeli Trauma Registry indicates an increase in both absolute rate and relative incidence of serious stab injuries. This indicates that patterns of injury following stab wounds are not necessarily similar, not even within the same geographical area over time.

December 2007
H.N. Baris, I. Kedar, G.J. Halpern, T. Shohat, N. Magal, M.D. Ludman and M. Shohat

Background: Fanconi anemia complementation group C and Bloom syndrome, rare autosomal recessive disorders marked by chromosome instability, are especially prevalent in the Ashkenazi* Jewish community. A single predominant mutation for each has been reported in Ashkenazi Jews: c.711+4A→T (IVS4 +4 A→T) in FACC[1] and BLMAsh in Bloom syndrome. Individuals affected by both syndromes are characterized by susceptibility for developing malignancies, and we questioned whether heterozygote carriers have a similarly increased risk.

Objectives: To estimate the cancer rate among FACC and BLMAsh carriers and their families over three previous generations in unselected Ashkenazi Jewish individuals.

Methods: We studied 42 FACC carriers, 28 BLMAsh carriers and 43 controls. The control subjects were Ashkenazi Jews participating in our prenatal genetic screening program who tested negative for FACC and BLMAsh. All subjects filled out a questionnaire regarding their own and a three-generation family history of cancer. The prevalence rates of cancer among relatives of FACC, BLMAsh and controls were computed and compared using the chi-square test.

Results: In 463 relatives of FACC carriers, 45 malignancies were reported (9.7%) including 10 breast (2.2%) and 13 colon cancers (2.8%). Among 326 relatives of BLMAsh carriers there were 30 malignancies (9.2%) including 7 breast (2.1%) and 4 colon cancers (1.2%). Controls consisted of 503 family members with 63 reported malignancies (12.5%) including 11 breast (2.2%) and 11 colon cancers (2.2%).

Conclusions: We found no significantly increased prevalence of malignancies among carriers in at least three generations compared to the controls.

* Jews of East European origin

[1] FACC = Fanconi anemia complementation group C

November 2007
Y. Laitman, B. Kaufmann, E. Levy Lahad, M.Z. Papa and E. Friedman

Background: Germline mutations in BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes account for only 20–40% of familial breast cancer cases. The CHEK2 gene encodes a checkpoint kinase, involved in response to DNA damage, and hence is a candidate gene for breast cancer susceptibility. Indeed, the CHEK2*1100delC truncating mutation was reported in a subset of mostly North European breast cancer families. The rate of the CHEK2*1100delC variant in the Ashkenazi* Jewish population was reported to be 0.3%.

Objectives: To evaluate whether CHEK2 germline mutations contribute to a breast cancer predisposition in Ashkenazi-Jewish high risk families.

Methods: High risk Ashkenazi Jewish women, none of whom was a carrier of the predominant Jewish mutations in BRCA1/BRCA2, were genotyped for germline mutations in the CHEK2 gene by exon-specific polymerase chain reaction followed by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis and sequencing of abnormally migrating fragments.

Results: Overall, 172 high risk women were genotyped: 75 (43.6%) with breast cancer (average age at diagnosis 49.6 ± 9.6 years, mean ± SD) and 97 asymptomatic individuals (age at counseling 48.3 ± 8.2 years). No truncating mutations were noted and four previously described missense mutations were detected (R3W 1.2%, I157T 1.2%, R180C 0.6% and S428F 5%), one silent polymorphism (E84E 20.5%) and one novel missense mutation (Y424H 1.2%). Segregation analysis of the I157T and S428F mutations (shown to affect protein function) with the cancer phenotype showed concordance for the CHK2*I157T mutation, as did two of three families with the CHK2*S428F mutation.

Conclusions: CHEK2 missense mutations may contribute to breast cancer susceptibility in Ashkenazi Jews.


*  Of East European descent

August 2006
D. Tekes-Manova, E. Israeli, T. Shochat, M. Swartzon, S. Gordon, R. Heruti, I. Ashkenazi and D. Justo
 Background: Coronary heart disease is a major cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Early detection of cardiovascular risk factors and intervention may reduce consequential morbidity and mortality.

Objectives: To assess the prevalence of reversible and treatable cardiovascular risk factors among 26’477 healthy Israeli adults: 23’339 men and 3138 women aged 25-55 years.

Methods: We collected data during routine examinations performed as part of a screening program for Israel Defense Force personnel.

Results: The three most prevalent cardiovascular risk factors were a sedentary lifestyle (64%), dyslipidemia (55.1%) and smoking (26.8%). Overall, 52.9% of the men and 48.4% of the women had two or more cardiovascular risk factors. Moreover, 52.4% of young adult men and 43.3% of young adult women, age 25-34 years, had two or more reversible cardiovascular risk factors.

Conclusions: In this expectedly healthy population there was a high prevalence of reversible and treatable cardiovascular risk factors in both genders and in young age. These observations stress the need for routine health examinations and lifestyle modification programs even in the young healthy Israeli population.

May 2006
R. Kannai and I.R. Chertok

The Ashkenazi-Jewish population is at increased risk for several recessively inherited disorders. While some of the disorders have severe or fatal symptom manifestations, others, such as non-neuronopathic Gaucher disease, do not usually pose a serious, life-threatening illness. Many healthcare centers in Israel offer prenatal panel screening. Controversy exists over the inclusion of Gaucher disease in the panel screening, especially since Gaucher disease screening lacks prognostic reliability. Most screening participants do not discriminate between the specific tests in the panel and are unable to discern between severe, life-threatening diseases and those that are less severe and even treatable. By including screening for Gaucher in the panel screening program, there is risk of a "panel effect," leading to termination of a pregnancy positive for Gaucher disease, without sufficient knowledge and understanding of the disease. Increasing medical and public awareness and knowledge of the disease, its prognosis and treatment options may reduce the rate of under-informed abortions associated with prenatal screening of Gaucher disease.

May 2005
J. Bishara, G. Livne, S. Ashkenazi, I. Levy, S. Pitlik, O. Ofir, B. Lev and Z. Samra

Background: The prevalence of extended-spectrum β-lactamase-producing organisms and their antimicrobial resistance patterns may vary between geographic areas.

Objectives: To evaluate the prevalence and susceptibility of ESBL[1]-producing organisms among Klebsiella pneumoniae and Escherichia coli isolated from adult and pediatric patients in two Israeli hospitals.

Methods: ESBL production was tested according to recommendations of the Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute, using ceftazidime (30 μg) and a combination of ceftazidime/clavulanate (30/10 μg) disks with a ≥5 mm difference indicating positivity. Antibiotic susceptibilities were determined by the disk diffusion method according to CLSI[2] standards. Minimum inhibitory concentrations were determined by the E-test.

Results: The prevalence of ESBL-producing organisms was significantly higher among K. pneumoniae than E. coli isolates – 32% (241/765) vs. 10% (57/547) respectively (P < 0.001), and more frequently isolated from adults than children (odds ratio 2.27 for K. pneumoniae and 12.94 for E. coli). Resistance rates for amoxicillin/clavulanate, piperacillin-tazobactam, amikacin, and ciprofloxacin among the ESBL-producing K. pneumoniae and E. coli isolates were 95%, 82%, 49% and 77% for K. pneumoniae, and 77%, 35%, 25% and 100% for E. coli. Two (0.8%) ESBL-producing and 4 (0.7%) ESBL-negative K. pneumoniae isolates showed intermediate susceptibility (MIC[3] 6 μg/ml) to meropenem. All isolates were sensitive to ertapenem and colistin.  

Conclusion: ESBL production among K. pneumoniae and E. coli is more prevalent in the adult population than the pediatric population and is associated with multidrug resistance.

[1] ESBL = extended spectrum β-lactamase

[2] CLSI = Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute (formerly the NCCLS)

[3] MIC = minimum inhibitory concentration


November 2004
N. Hiller, O. Goitein and Y.J. Ashkenazi
August 2004
I. Korn-Lubetzki and A. Brand

Background: In developed countries, the incidence of Sydenham’s chorea, a major sign of rheumatic fever has declined, but outbreaks are still encountered worldwide.

Objectives: To report the characteristics of a cohort of SC[1] patients in the Jerusalem area.

Methods: We conducted a prospective assessment of rheumatic fever and SC between 1985 and 2002. The diagnosis of rheumatic fever was based on the revised Jones criteria. Other etiologies of chorea were excluded. Recurrence was defined as the development of new signs, lasting more than 24 hours and separated by a minimum of 2 months from the previous episode. Patients were followed for 1 to 14 years following the initial SC episode, and at least one year after recurrence.

Results: Among 180 children with rheumatic fever, 24 had SC. Most of them came from large families of Ashkenazi origin. In 19 patients (79%) the chorea was associated with other rheumatic fever signs, while 5 had pure chorea. Due to the systematic use of two-dimensional color Doppler echocardiography, cardiac involvement was detected in 75% of the patients. Ten patients (42%, 7 females) developed 11 recurrent episodes of chorea 3 months to 10 years after the initial episode. At recurrence, chorea was the sole rheumatic sign in all nine patients who recurred once. None of the patients had persistent chorea.

Conclusions: SC is still prevalent in the pediatric population of Jerusalem, and may recur years later. Recognition of the disease and adequate treatment is necessary.

[1] SC = Sydenham's chorea

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