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עמוד בית
Sun, 26.05.24

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May 2024
Jen Barak Levitt MD, Shira Barmatz MD, Shira Fisch-Gilad MD, Yossef H. Taieb MD, Adam Dalal MD, Khashayar Afshari MD, Nazgol Haddadi MD, Dana Tzur Bitan MD, Arnon Dov Cohen MD PhD, Daniel Mimouni MD, Emmilia Hodak MD, Shany Sherman MD

Background: Hidradenitis suppurativa (HS) is a chronic inflammatory skin disease involving apocrine gland-bearing regions. There is an under-representation of non-Caucasians in epidemiologic studies of HS. The characteristics of HS in Israeli Arabs have not yet been studied.

Objectives: To investigate the demographic and clinical profile of HS in the Israeli Arab population.

Methods: A retrospective analysis was conducted in two cohorts of patients with HS in Israel. The patients were derived from the database of a large health management organization (n=4191, 639 Arabs; population-based) and a major tertiary medical center (n=372, 49 Arabs). Demographic and clinical data were compared between ethnic groups.

Results: The prevalence of HS in Israeli Arabs was found to be 0.5%, fivefold higher than in Jews. Arab patients were younger (35.3 vs. 40.5 years, P < 0.001) and mostly male (52% vs. 35.7%, p < 0.001), with lower rates of co-morbidities, including smoking (40.8% vs. 55.7%, p < 0.001), hyperlipidemia, and depression as well as a higher rate of dissecting cellulitis (10.2% vs. 1.9%, p = 0.008). HS was more severe in Arabs, but of shorter duration, with mainly axillary involvement (79.6% vs. 57.9%, p = 0.004). Treatment with hormones was more common in Jews, and with biologic agents in Arabs.

Conclusions: The findings suggest a different phenotype of HS in Arabs, warranting further study.

March 2024
Amir Aker MD, Ina Volis MD, Walid Saliba MD MPH, Ibrahim Naoum MD, Barak Zafrir MD

Background: Ischemic stroke is associated with increased risk of morbidity and mortality in future vascular events.

Objectives: To investigate whether CHA2DS2-VASc scores aid in risk stratification of middle-aged patients without atrial fibrillation (AF) experiencing ischemic stroke.

Methods: We analyzed data of 2628 patients, aged 40–65 years with no known AF who presented with acute ischemic stroke between January 2020 and February 2022. We explored the association between CHA2DS2-VASc scores categorized by subgroups (score 2–3, 4–5, or 6–7) with major adverse cardiac and cerebrovascular events (MACCE) including recurrent stroke, myocardial infarction, coronary revascularization, or all-cause death during a median follow-up of 19.9 months.

Results: Mean age was 57 years (30% women); half were defined as low socioeconomic status. Co-morbidities included hypertension, diabetes, obesity, and smoking in 40–60% of the patients. The incidence rate of MACCE per 100 person-years was 6.7, 12.2, and 21.2 in those with score 2–3, 4–5, and 6–7, respectively. In a multivariate cox regression model, compared to patients with score 2–3 (reference group), those with score 4–5 and 6–7 had an adjusted hazard ratio (95% confidence interval [95%CI]) for MACCE of 1.74 (95%CI 1.41–2.14) and 2.87 (95%CI 2.10–3.93), respectively. The discriminative capacity of CHA2DS2-VASc score for overall MACCE was modest (area under curve 0.63; 95%CI 0.60–0.66), although better for myocardial infarction 0.69 (95% CI 0.61–0.77).

Conclusions: CHA2DS2-VASc score may predict future MACCE in middle-aged patients with ischemic stroke and no history of AF.

Shiri Zarour MD, Esther Dahan MD, Dana Karol MD, Or Hanoch, Barak Cohen MD, Idit Matot MD

Background: Survivors of critical illness are at increased risk of long-term impairments, referred to as post-intensive care unit (ICU) syndrome (PICS). Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is common among ICU survivors with reported rates of up to 27%. The prevalence of PTSD among Israeli ICU survivors has not been reported to date.

Objectives: To evaluate the prevalence of new onset PTSD diagnosed in a post-ICU clinic at a tertiary center in Israel.

Methods: We conducted a retrospective, single center, cohort study. Data were collected from medical records of all patients who visited the Tel Aviv Sourasky Medical Center post-ICU clinic between October 2017 and June 2020. New onset PTSD was defined as PTSD diagnosed by a certified board psychiatrist during the post-ICU clinic visit. Data were analyzed using descriptive statistics.

Results: Overall, 39 patients (mean age 51 ± 17 years, 15/39 females [38%]) attended the post-ICU clinic during the study period. They were evaluated 82 ± 57 days after hospital discharge. After excluding 7 patients due to missing proper psychiatric analysis, 32 patients remained eligible for the primary analysis. New PTSD was diagnosed in one patient (3%).

Conclusions: We found lower incidence of PTSD in our cohort when compared to existing literature. Possible explanations include different diagnostic tools and low risk factors rate. Unique national, cultural, and/or religious perspectives might have contributed to the observed low PTSD rate. Further research in larger study populations is required to establish the prevalence of PTSD among Israeli ICU survivors.

March 2023
Dorit Shitenberg MD, Barak Pertzov MD, Moshe Heching MD, Yael Shostak MD, Osnat Shtraichman MD, Dror Rosengarten MD, Moshe Yeshurun MD, Yury Peysakhovich MD, Yaron Barac MD, Mordechai R. Kramer MD

Background: Late-onset pulmonary complications can occur following hematological stem cell transplantation (HSCT). In allogeneic HSCT these complications are often associated with chronic graft-versus-host disease (GVHD). Lung transplantation (LTx) often remains the only viable therapeutic option in these patients.

Objectives: To describe our experience with LTx due to GVHD after HSCT and to compare the long-term survival of this group of patients to the overall survival of our cohort of LTx recipients for other indications.

Methods: We retrospectively retrieved all data on patients who had undergone LTx for end-stage lung disease as a sequela of allogeneic HSCT, between 1997 and 2021, at Rabin Medical Center in Israel.

Results: A total of 15 of 850 patients (1.7%) from our cohort of LTx recipients fulfilled the criteria of LTx as a sequela of late pulmonary complication after allogeneic HSCT. The median age at the time of HSCT was 33 years (median 15–53, range 3–60). The median time between HSCT and first signs of chronic pulmonary GVHD was 24 months (interquartile range [IQR] 12–80). The median time from HSCT to LTx was 96 months (IQR 63–120). Multivariate analysis showed that patients transplanted due to GVHD had similar survival compared to patients who were transplanted for other indications.

Conclusions: LTx for GVHD after allogeneic HSCT constitutes an important treatment strategy. The overall survival appears to be comparable to patients after LTx for other indications.

February 2023
Lee Yaari MD, Shay Zion Ribenzaft MD, Mohamed Kittani MD, Mustafa Yassin MD, Barak Haviv MD

Background: Previous epidemiological studies on shoulder instability evaluated specific and relatively small subgroups of patients.

Objectives: To determine the incidence rate of primary shoulder dislocations.

Methods: Cohort analysis of electronic health records from 2004 to 2019 was conducted in a urban district of a major health maintenance organization (HMO) in Israel. Patients presented with primary shoulder dislocation that was treated with closed reduction in any medical facility within the district. Overall incidence density rates (IDR) of primary shoulder dislocations and stabilization surgeries were determined.

Results: Over a period of 16 years 13,158 patients underwent closed reduction of primary shoulder dislocation. Of those, 712 shoulder stabilization surgeries were performed (5%). The IDR of primary shoulder dislocations were 124 per 100,000 person-years. The IDR of primary shoulder stabilizations were 7 per 100,000 person-years. The peak in the number of dislocations was observed in those 20–29 years old and ≥ 60 years of. In patients under 59 years old, dislocations were more common in men. In those ≥ 60 years of age, dislocations were more common in women. Most shoulder stabilization surgeries were performed on young patients. The annual mean time from the first dislocation to stabilization surgery linearly declined to 6 months in 2019.

Conclusions: The IDR of primary shoulder dislocations calculated from the largest HMO in Israel were 124 per 100,000 person-years. Shoulder dislocations had bimodal age distribution. Overall, 5% of the patients (mainly young) with shoulder dislocations underwent shoulder stabilization surgery during the study period.

November 2022
Moriah Bergwerk MBBS, Nir Lasman MD, Limor Helpman MD, Barak Rosenzweig MD, Dor Cohen MD, Edward Itelman MD, Raz Gross MD, Gad Segal MD

Worldwide, students of healthcare professions attend clinical rotations at medical facilities. Much research, and consequently scientific publications, is produced during their studies, bearing the fruits of student–faculty collaboration. To the best of our knowledge, no previous contract has been proposed detailing the fine print to pre-determine mutual responsibilities and privileges of students and faculty. Our objective was to present such a contract to the relevant students and faculty. We conducted a literature review to study existing proposals and solutions for this dilemma. Appropriate guidelines were also scanned. We included a proposal for a standard contract as the basis for student–faculty agreement for conducting research and publishing collaborative work. Questions regarding the relative contribution of students and subsequent authorship often arise. Vague rules and absent regulations in this realm can, at times, can be disadvantageous to students. We foresee a future role for our proposed agreement.

August 2021
Tal Frenkel Rutenberg MD, Shai Shemesh MD, Ran Rutenberg MD, Snir Heller MD, Barak Haviv MD, and Alon Burg MD

Background: Flexible flatfoot (FF) is a common foot deformity that can often consist of foot pain. Surgical treatment is designed to lengthen the lateral column.

Objectives: To resolve whether radiographic standing feet measurements of normo-plantigrade feet and FF, symptomatic or not, differ and to determine whether the lateral column is shorter.

Methods: The study comprised 72 patients (127 feet) consecutive patients, 18 years of age and older, who were divided into three groups: normal feet (56), asymptomatic FF (29), and symptomatic FF (42). All patients had a standing anterior posterior (AP) and lateral radiographs. AP images were used for the measurement of the talocalcaneal angle, talar-1st metatarsal angle, and talonavicular coverage. Lateral X-rays were used to estimate the talocalcaneal angle, talar-1st metatarsal angle, calcaneal pitch, naviculocuboid overlap, and column ratio.

Results: All three of the AP radiograph measurements differed among groups, and higher values were measured in the symptomatic FF group. Post hoc analysis found that the talonavicular coverage and the talocalcaneal angles also differed between symptomatic and asymptomatic FF patients. While some lateral measurements differed within groups, only the lateral talar-1st metatarsal angle distinguished between asymptomatic and symptomatic patients. The lateral column length was not found to be shorter among FF patients, weather symptomatic or not.

Conclusions: Only the talonavicular coverage, the AP talocalcaneal, and the lateral talar-1st metatarsal angles were found to differ between asymptomatic and symptomatic FF patients. The lateral column was not found to be shorter

Uri Barak MD, Dimitri Sheinis MD, Eliezer Sidon MD, Shai Shemesh MD, Amir Amitai MD, and Nissim Ohana MD

Background: Cervical spinal surgery is considered safe and effective. One of the few specific complications of this procedure is C5 nerve root palsy. Expressed primarily by deltoid muscle and biceps brachii weakness, it is rare and has been related to nerve root traction or to ischemic spinal cord damage.

Objectives: To determine the clinical and epidemiological traits of C5 palsy. To determine whether C5 palsy occurs predominantly in one specific surgical approach compared to others.

Methods: A retrospective study of patients who underwent cervical spine surgery at our medical center during a consecutive 8-year period was conducted. The patient data were analyzed for demographics, diagnosis, and surgery type and approach, as well as for complications, with emphasis on the C5 nerve root palsy.

Results: The study group was comprised of 124 patients. Seven (5.6%) developed a C5 palsy following surgery. Interventions were either by anterior, by posterior or by a combined approach. Seven patients developed this complication. All of whom had myelopathy and were older males. A combined anteroposterior (5 patients) and posterior access (2 patients) were the only approaches that were associated with the C5 palsy. None of the patients who were operated via an anterior approach did develop this sequel.

Conclusions: The incidence of the C5 root palsy in our cohort reached 5.6%. Interventions performed through a combined anterior-posterior access in older myelopathic males, may carry the highest risk for this complication

July 2021
Moshe Y. Flugelman MD, Ruth Margalit MD, Ami Aronheim PhD, Omri Barak PhD, Assaf Marom MD PhD, Katya Dolnikov MD, Eyal Braun MD, Ayelet Raz-Pasteur MD, Zaher S. Azzam MD, David Hochstein MD, Riad Haddad MD, Rachel Nave PhD, Arieh Riskin MD, Dan Waisman MD, Robert Glueck MD, Michal Mekel MD, Yael Avraham BSc, Uval Bar-Peled BSc, Ronit Kacev MA, Michal Keren BA, Amir Karban MD, and Elon Eisenberg MD

Background: The coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) pandemic forced drastic changes in all layers of life. Social distancing and lockdown drove the educational system to uncharted territories at an accelerated pace, leaving educators little time to adjust.

Objectives: To describe changes in teaching during the first phase of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Methods: We described the steps implemented at the Technion–Israel Institute of Technology Faculty of Medicine during the initial 4 months of the COVID-19 pandemic to preserve teaching and the academic ecosystem. 

Results: Several established methodologies, such as the flipped classroom and active learning, demonstrated effectiveness. In addition, we used creative methods to teach clinical medicine during the ban on bedside teaching and modified community engagement activities to meet COVID-19 induced community needs. 

Conclusions: The challenges and the lessons learned from teaching during the COVID-19 pandemic prompted us to adjust our teaching methods and curriculum using multiple online teaching methods and promoting self-learning. It also provided invaluable insights on our pedagogy and the teaching of medicine in the future with emphasis on students and faculty being part of the changes and adjustments in curriculum and teaching methods. However, personal interactions are essential to medical school education, as are laboratories, group simulations, and bedside teaching

Renana Barak MD, Barliz Waissengrin MD, and Ido Wolf MD
March 2021
Moran Slavin MD, Shmuel Avital MD, Yael Einbinder MD, Barak Benjamin MD, and Roye Inbar MD

Background: Peritoneal dialysis (PD) is a treatment option for patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD) and cardiorenal syndrome (CRS).

Objectives: To evaluate the outcome of this patient population.

Methods: A retrospective study was conducted of patients who underwent an open or laparoscopic insertion of a PD catheter at our institution between 2009 and 2017. Data included demographics, peri-operative parameters, and long-term outcome. Patient and technique survival curves are presented, including subgroup analysis by method of catheter insertion and techniques for infection prevention.

Results: The study population included 95 men and 42 women, aged 65.7 ± 12.4 years. Mean follow-up was 34.6 ± 27.3 months. Open insertion was performed in 113 cases, while 24 underwent laparoscopic insertion. There was no difference in technique survival between these groups (P = 0.943). Removal of the catheter was required in 66% of patients. Median technique survival was 12.1 months. Two-year technique survival was 37% and 5-year technique survival was 12%. The leading cause for catheter removal was infection (69%). Application of measures for prevention of infections were significantly associated with prolonged technique survival (P = 0.001). Technique survival after 2 years was 38% with the application of a single measure and 57% with the application of two measures (P = 0.001). CRS patients (n=24) had a significantly lower overall survival rate (2-year survival 20% vs. 74%, P = 0.001).

Conclusions: The method of catheter insertion has no effect on technique survival. Prevention of infections is the most significant factor for improving the technique survival rates.

February 2021
Dorit E. Zilberman MD, Yasmin Abu-Ghanem MD, Gil Raviv MD, Barak Rosenzweig MD, Eddie Fridman MD, Orith Portnoy MD, and Zohar A Dotan MD PhD

Background: Little is known about oncologic outcomes following robot-assisted-radical-prostatectomy (RALP) for clinical T3 (cT3) prostate cancer.

Objectives: To investigate oncologic outcomes of patients with cT3 prostate cancer treated by RALP.

Methods: Medical records of patients who underwent RALP from 2010 to 2018 were retrieved. cT3 cases were reviewed. Demographic and pre/postoperative pathology data were analyzed. Patients were followed in 3–6 month intervals with repeat PSA analyses. Adjuvant/salvage treatments were monitored. Biochemical recurrence (BCR) meant PSA levels of ≥ 0.2 ng/ml.

Results: Seventy-nine patients met inclusion criteria. Median age at surgery was 64 years. Preoperative PSA level was 7.14 ng/dl, median prostate weight was 54 grams, and 23 cases (29.1%) were down-staged to pathological stage T2. Positive surgical margin rate was 42%. Five patients were lost to follow-up. Median follow-up time for the remaining 74 patients was 24 months. Postoperative relapse in PSA levels occurred in 31 patients (42%), and BCR in 28 (38%). Median time to BCR was 9 months. The overall 5-year BCR-free survival rate was 61%. Predicting factors for BCR were age (hazard-ratio [HR] 0.85, 95% confidence interval [95%CI] 0.74–0.97, P = 0.017) and prostate weight (HR 1.04, 95%CI 1.01–1.08, P = 0.021). Twenty-six patients (35%) received adjuvant/salvage treatments. Three patients died from metastatic prostate cancer 31, 52, and 78 months post-surgery. Another patient died 6 months post-surgery of unknown reasons. The 5-year cancer-specific survival rate was 92%.

Conclusions: RALP is an oncologic effective procedure for cT3 prostate cancer. Adjuvant/salvage treatment is needed to achieve optimal disease-control

January 2021
Mohamed Kittani MD, Barak Haviv MD, Shai Shemesh MD, Lee Yaari MD, Mustafa Yassin MD, and Lea Rath-Wolfson MD

Background: Injuries to the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) are common and complete tears often fail to heal. ACL reconstruction is considered the surgical gold standard of care for ACL injuries in young active patients.

Objectives: To determine the corresponding morphological and histological features of the torn ACL in different time periods after injury.

Methods: The study included 28 remnant specimens of torn ACLs from patients who had ACL reconstruction surgery of the knee. The remnant pathology was evaluated by its morphology during arthroscopy and by histopathologic measurements.

Results: At surgery there were three progressive and distinct morphological tear patterns. The first pattern was noticed within the first 3 months from injury and showed no scar tissue. The second pattern appeared later and was characterized by the appearance of scar tissue with adhesion to the femoral wall. The third pattern was characterized by adhesion of the ACL remnant to the posterior cruciate ligament. The histological changes of the first morphological pattern showed abundance of blood vessels and lymphocytes at the torn femoral end with few irregular collagen fibers. The second and third tear patterns showed decrement in the number of blood vessels and lymphocytes with longitudinally oriented collagen fibers.

Conclusions: The morphological features of the ACL remnant in the first 3 months after injury showed no scar tissue and its histological features had the characteristics of a reparative phase. This phase was followed by a prolonged remodeling phase that ended with attachment of the remnant to the posterior cruciate ligament.

December 2020
Moshe Shai Amor, Dror Rosengarten, Dorit Shitenberg, Barak Pertzov, Yael Shostak, and Mordechai Reuven Kramer

Background: Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) has poor prognosis. Anti-fibrotic treatment has been shown to slow disease progression. Lung transplantation (LTx) offers a survival benefit. The 5-year survival after LTx in IPF is between 40 and 50%

Objectives: To evaluate which IPF patients have better prognosis following LTx.

Methods: A retrospective study was conducted with all IPF patients who had undergone LTx in the Rabin Medical Center between 2010 and 2018. We collected data on pre-evaluation of pulmonary function tests, echocardiographic and right heart catherization, and anti-fibrotic treatments. The Kaplan-Meier method was used for survival analysis.

Results: Among148 patients who underwent LTx, 58 were double LTx (DLT) and 90 single LTx (SLT). Mean age was 58.07 ± 9.78 years; 104 males and 44 females. DLT patients had significantly lower survival rates than SLT in the short and medium term after LTx. Patients with saturation above 80% after the 6-minute walk test (6MWT) had higher survival rates. Patients over 65 years of age had a lower survival rates. Those with pulmonary hypertension (PHT) above 30 mmHg had a poorer prognosis with lower survival rates.

Conclusions: IPF patients with higher mean PHT, older age (> 65 years), and desaturation following 6MWT had lower survival rates following LTx. DLT may decrease survival rate compared to SLT just for the short and medium period of time after LTx. These results may lead to better selection of IPF patient candidates for LTx. Additional studies are warranted for choosing which patients will have better prognosis after LTx.

July 2020
Yaron Rudnicki MD, Ian White MD, Barak Benjamin MD, Lauren Lahav MD, Baruch Shpitz MD and Shmuel Avital MD

Background: Following an intestinal anastomotic leak, stoma creation may be the safest approach. However, this method may be challenging and cause significant morbidity. In selected cases, a T drain approach can be beneficial and a stoma can be avoided.

Objectives: To present one group's experience with a T drain approach for anastomotic leaks.

Methods: Data on patients who underwent emergent re-laparotomy following gastrointestinal anastomotic leaks were retrieved retrospectively and assessed with a new intra-operative leak severity score.

Results: Of 1684 gastrointestinal surgeries performed from 2014 to 2018, 41 (2.4%) cases of anastomotic leaks were taken for re-laparotomy. Cases included different sites and etiologies. Twelve patients were treated with a T-tube drain inserted through the leak site, 18 had a stoma taken out, 6 re-anastomosis, 4 were treated with an Endosponge, and one primary repair with a proximal ileostomy was conducted. T drain approach was successful in 11 of 12 patients (92%) with full recovery. One patient did not improve and underwent reoperation with resection and re-anastomosis. A severity score of anastomotic integrity is provided to help surgeons in decision making.

Conclusions: A T drain approach can be an optimal solution in selected cases following an intestinal anastomotic leak. When the leak is limited, the remaining anastomosis is intact and the abdominal environment allows it, a T drain can be used and a stoma can be avoided.

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