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עמוד בית
Wed, 06.12.23

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September 2023
Adi Hertz MD, Scott Ehrenberg MD, Howard Amital MD MHA

Fibromyalgia syndrome is a chronic widespread musculoskeletal pain syndrome primarily characterized by fatigue, sleep disturbances, and cognitive impairment. Its etiology remains elusive despite ongoing research and has multifactorial elements. It has been shown that traumatic events and neuro-inflammation, autoimmunity, and genetic factors contribute to the pathogenesis of fibromyalgia syndrome.

Recent evidence has pointed to a bi-directional link between cardiovascular disease, traditional cardiovascular risk factors, and metabolic syndrome (MetS), together with the presence of fibromyalgia [1].

February 2023
Dante Antonelli MD, Youri Rabkin MD, Yoav Turgeman MD, Mohamed Jabaren MD

Background: Sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 inhibitors (SGLT2i) and glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonists (GLP1-RA) are new antidiabetic drugs that are recommended by current guidelines as a class I novel glucose-lowering treatment that improves cardiovascular outcome in type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), particularly in patients with cardiovascular disease.

Objectives: To evaluate adherence to the current guidelines for treatment with SGLT2i and GLP1-RA drugs in patients referred to ambulatory consultant cardiology clinics with pre-existing T2DM.

Methods: We studied consecutive new patients with a pre-existing diagnosis of T2DM who were referred to the Clalit Health Services ambulatory consultant cardiology clinic over a 6-month period. The recorded information included demographics, co-morbidities, and prescribed drugs at patient admission.

Results: During the study period, 1782 patients visited our outpatient cardiology clinic. At screening, T2DM was present in 428 patients (24%); 77 (18%) were being treated with SGLT2i, and 39 (9.1%) with GLP1-RA. Patients receiving SGLT2i and GLP1-RA were younger and had more coronary artery disease, lower mean left ventricular ejection fraction, and higher mean estimated glomerular filtration rates than those who were not receiving these drugs. HbA1C was > 7 in 205 (47.9%) patients and > 7.5 in 136 patients (31.8%). Body mass index was > 30 kg/m2 in 231 (54%) patients.

Conclusions: GLP1-RA and SGLT2i drugs were found to be administered more frequently than previously reported, but they are not yet satisfactorily prescribed.

March 2022
Filipe Cirne MD, Som D. Mukherjee MD, Jehonathan Pinthus MD, Darryl P. Leong MBBS

Increased life expectancy due to improved cancer prognosis, shared determinants (e.g., tobacco use), and cardiovascular toxicities related to cancer therapies, including the adverse cardiometabolic effects of androgen deprivation therapy for prostate cancer, make cardiovascular disease an frequent and important co-morbidity in patients with a genitourinary malignancy. Complex cardiovascular disease can pose significant challenges in the management of these patients given the uncertainties related to the best approach to reconcile ischemic and bleeding risks, and the role of invasive cardiovascular interventions in individuals with advanced cancer. In this review, we discuss the current evidence that informs decision-making in this clinical context.

November 2021
Andrei Braester MD, Alexander Shturman MD, Bennidor Raviv MD, Lev Dorosinsky MD, Eyal Rosenthal MD, and Shaul Atar MD

Background: Mean platelet volume (MPV), an essential component of the complete blood count (CBC) indices, is underutilized in common practice. In recent years, MPV has drawn strong interest, especially in clinical research. During inflammation, the MPV has a higher value because of platelet activation.

Objectives: To verify whether high MPV values discovered incidentally in healthy naïve patients indicates the development or the presence of cardiovascular risk factors, particularly metabolic syndrome and pre-diabetes.

Methods: A cohort study was used to assess the diagnostic value of high MPV discovered incidentally, in naïve patients (without any known cause of an abnormal high MPV, greater than  upper limit of the normal range, such as active cardiovascular diseases and metabolic syndrome).

Results: The mean MPV value in the patient group was 12.3 femtoliter. There was a higher incidence of metabolic syndrome in our research group than in the general population and a non-significant tendency of pre-diabetes. Family doctors more frequently meet naïve patients with high MPV than a hospital doctor. The results of our study are more relevant for him, who should know the relevance of such a finding and search for a hidden pre-diabetes or metabolic syndrome.

Conclusions: High MPV values discovered incidentally in healthy naïve subjects suggest the development or the presence of cardiovascular risk factors, particularly metabolic syndrome and pre-diabetes. No statistically significant association was found between MPV and the presence of cardiovascular disease

June 2020
Irene Nabutovsky PhD, Saar Ashri BSc, Amira Nachshon RNMA, Riki Tesler PhD, Yair Shapiro MD MBA, Evan Wright MD, Brian Vadasz MD, Amir Offer MD FACC, Liza Grosman-Rimon PhD and Robert Klempfner MD

Background: Cardiac rehabilitation (CR) is underutilized globally despite evidence of clinical benefit. Major obstacles for wider adoption include distance from the rehabilitation center, travel time, and interference with daily routine. Tele-cardiac rehabilitation (tele-CR) can potentially address some of these limitations, enabling patients to exercise in their home environment or community.

Objectives: To evaluate the clinical and physiological outcomes as well as adherence to tele-CR in patients with low cardiovascular risk and to assess exercise capacity, determined by an exercise stress test, using a treadmill before and following the 6-month intervention.

Methods: A total of 22 patients with established coronary artery disease participated in a 6-month tele-CR program. Datos Health (Ramat Gan, Israel), a digital health application and care-team dashboard, was used for remote monitoring, communication, and management of the patients.

Results: Following the 6-month tele-CR intervention, there was significant improvement in exercise capacity, assessed by estimated metabolic equivalents with an increase from 10.6 ± 0.5 to 12.3 ± 0.5 (P = 0.002). High-density lipoproteins levels significantly improved, whereas low-density lipoproteins, triglyceride, glycosylated hemoglobin, and systolic and diastolic blood pressure levels were not significantly changed. Exercise adherence was consistent among patients, with more than 63% of patients participating in a moderate intensity exercise program for 150 minutes per week.

Conclusions: Patients who participated in tele-CR adhered to the exercise program and attained clinically significant functional improvement. Tele-CR is a viable option for populations that cannot, or elect not to, participate in center-based CR programs.

January 2020
Miri Schamroth Pravda MD, Nili Schamroth Pravda MD, Yitzhak Beigel MD, Shlomi Matetzky MD and Roy Beigel MD

In this review, the authors re-examine the role of aspirin in the primary prevention of cardiovascular disease. They discuss the history of the use of aspirin in primary prevention, the current guidelines, and the recent evidence surrounding aspirin use as primary prevention in special populations such as those with moderate cardiovascular risk, diabetes mellitus, and the elderly


April 2019
Nadya Kagansky MD, Hilla Knobler MD, Marina Stein-Babich, Hillary Voet PhD, Adi Shalit, Jutta Lindert PhD MPH and Haim Y. Knobler MD

Background: Reports of longevity in Holocaust survivors (HS) conflict with excess prevalence of chronic diseases described among them. However, data on their long-term risk of cardiovascular diseases (CVD) are limited. Clinical data on large representative groups of HS who were exposed to severe persecution are also limited.

Objectives: To determine the prevalence of CVD and the risk factors in a large cohort of elderly HS compared to elderly individuals who were not exposed to the Holocaust (NHS).

Methods: CVD prevalence rates and risk factors data from the computerized system of the central district of Clalit Health Services, the largest Israeli health maintenance organization (HMO) in Israel were evaluated in a retrospective observational study. The study was comprised of 4004 elderly HS who underwent direct severe persecution. They were randomly matched by identification numbers to 4004 elderly NHS.

Results: HS were older than NHS and 51% of them were older than 85 years. The prevalence rate of ischemic heart disease (IHD) was significantly higher among HS. HS underwent significantly more cardiac interventions (20% vs. 15.7%, P < 0.05). HS status was an independent risk factor for increased IHD and for more coronary interventions.

Conclusions: Despite having a higher prevalence of CVD, a substantial number of HS live long lives. This finding may imply both unique resilience and ability to cope with chronic illness of the survivors as well as adjusted medical services for this population. These findings may help in planning the treatment of other mass trauma survivors.

August 2018
Avi Porath MD MPH, Jonathan Eli Arbelle MD MHA, Naama Fund, Asaf Cohen and Morris Mosseri MD FESC

Background: The salutary effects of statin therapy in patients with cardiovascular disease (CVD) are well established. Although generally considered safe, statin therapy has been reported to contribute to induction of diabetes mellitus (DM).

Objectives: To assess the risk-benefit of statin therapy, prescribed for the prevention of CVD, in the development of DM.

Methods: In a population-based real-life study, the incidence of DM and CVD were assessed retrospectively among 265,414 subjects aged 40–70 years, 17.9% of whom were treated with statins. Outcomes were evaluated according to retrospectively determined baseline 10 year cardiovascular (CV) mortality risks as defined by the European Systematic COronary Risk Evaluation, statin dose-intensity regimen, and level of drug adherence.

Results: From 2010 to 2014, 5157 (1.9%) new cases of CVD and 11,637 (4.4%) of DM were observed. Low-intensity statin therapy with over 50% adherence was associated with increased DM incidence in patients at low or intermediate baseline CV risk, but not in patients at high CV risk. In patients at low CV risk, no CV protective benefit was obtained. The number needed to harm (NNH; incident DM) for low-intensity dose regimens with above 50% adherence was 40. In patients at intermediate and high CV risk, the number needed to treat was 125 and 29; NNH was 50 and 200, respectively.

Conclusions: Prescribing low-dose statins for primary prevention of CVD is beneficial in patients at high risk and may be detrimental in patients at low CV risk. In patients with intermediate CV risk, our data support current recommendations of individualizing treatment decisions.

July 2018
Avishay Elis MD, David Pereg MD, Zaza Iakobishvili MD, Dikla Geva PhD and Ilan Goldenberg MD

Background: A patient`s individual chance of being diagnosed with cardiovascular disease can be determined by risk scores.

Objectives: To determine the risk score profiles of patients presenting with a first acute coronary event according to pre-admission risk factors and to evaluate its association with long-term mortality.

Methods: The research was based on a retrospective study of a cohort from the 2010 and 2013 Acute Coronary Syndrome Israeli Surveys (ACSIS). Inclusion criteria included first event and no history of coronary heart disease or cardiovascular disease risk equivalent. The Framingham Risk Score, the European Systematic COronary Risk Evaluation (SCORE), and the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association/ (ACC/AHA) risk calculator were computed for each patient. The risk profile of each patients was determined by the three scores. The prognostic value of each score for 5 year survival was evaluated.

Results: The study population comprised 1338 patients enrolled in the prospective ACSIS survey. The ACC/AHA score was the most accurate in identifying patients as high risk based on pre-admission risk factors (73% of the subjects). The Framingham algorithm identified 53%, whereas SCORE recognized only 4%. After multivariate adjustment for clinical factors at presentation, we found that no scores were independently associated with 5 year mortality following the first acute coronary event.

Conclusions: Patients with first acute coronary event had a higher pre-admission risk scores according to the ACC/AHA risk algorithm. No risk scores were independently associated with 5 year survival after an event.

July 2017
Amir Dagan, Naim Mahroum, Gad Segal, Shmuel Tiosano, Abdulla Watad, Doron Comaneshter, Arnon D. Cohen and Howard Amital

Background: Patients with giant cell arteritis (GCA) suffer from inflammatory diseases often treated by large amounts of corticosteroids. Whether this inflammatory burden also carries an increased risk for cardiovascular morbidity, and especially ischemic heart disease, is not clearly established.

Objectives: To clarify the linkage between GCA and ischemic heart disease. 

Methods: In a cross-sectional study, we assessed the association between GCA and ischemic heart disease, adjusting for cardiovascular risk factors, among GCA patients and matched controls using the database of the largest healthcare provider in Israel.

Results: The study group was comprised of 5659 GCA patients and 28,261 age and gender matched controls. The proportion of ischemic heart disease was higher in the GCA group (27.5% vs. 12.5% among controls, odds ratio 2.65). Diabetes mellitus, hypertension, hyperlipidemia and smoking were also found to have higher concurrency in GCA. After stratifying for those cardiovascular co-morbidities using logistic regression, GCA remained independently associated with ischemic heart disease with an odds ratio of 1.247 (1.146–1.357 P < 0.001).

Conclusions: GCA is associated with both cardiovascular risk factors and ischemic heart disease. Healthcare professionals should not overlook this aspect of the disease when managing GCA patients. 


April 2017
July 2014
A. Nobre MD, Walber P. Vieira MD, Francisco E.S. da Rocha MD, Jozelio F. de Carvalho MD PhD and Carlos E.M. Rodrigues MD PhD

Smoking is a risk factor for thromboangiitis obliterans (TAO, Buerger’s disease) and arteriosclerosis, but there are few cases of coronary heart disease (CAD)-associated Buerger's disease. A literature search for articles in English, Spanish and French published between 1966 and 2012 on patients with coronary involvement and TAO revealed 12 patients. We describe an additional case with involvement of the central nervous system, myocardium and large-diameter proximal arteries. The main clinical manifestations in these 13 cases were lower limb claudication and acute thoracic pain. The histologic findings showed thrombosis with unbroken internal elastic lamina and intimal clusters of granulocytes; coronary angiography revealed predominant involvement of the left anterior descending and right coronary artery. Treatment included coronary bypass procedures, coronary angioplasty, smoking cessation, and anticoagulant therapy. A complete therapeutic response was observed in half the patients. This review of all published cases of TAO patients with coronary symptoms, together with our patient, demonstrates the rarity of this clinical association. Patients under age 40 with CAD but no prominent cardiovascular risk factors besides smoking should be evaluated for the presence of Buerger's disease.

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