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עמוד בית
Fri, 01.03.24

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November 2023
Ibrahim Osman MD, Alaa Atamna MD, Avishay Elis MD

Background: Low-risk venous thromboembolism (VTE) patients are advised to be discharged from the emergency department (ED) on direct oral anticoagulants (DOACs) treatment. There is no data on whether this recommendation is followed in Israel.

Objectives: To characterize newly diagnosed VTE patients who were discharged from the ED, their anticoagulation treatment at the ED, the recommended discharge protocol, and patient adherence.

Methods: We conducted a retrospective cohort study, which included all newly diagnosed VTE patients who were discharged from the ED. Collected data included demographic and clinical background; anticoagulation treatment at the ED, recommended discharge protocol and its subsequent adherence, patient subsequent, recommended hematological evaluation, and adverse events.

Results: The study group included 443 patients, 89% with deep vein thrombosis (DVT). Approximately three-quarters were treated with anticoagulants in the ED, 98% with enoxaparin. At discharge, anticoagulants were recommended for all; 49% continued enoxaparin, 47% DOACs, and 4% warfarin. After 4 weeks, 67% were treated with DOACs, 22% with enoxaparin, 5% with warfarin. Approximately 6% discontinued all treatment. After 12 weeks, 90% of the patients who were taking DOACs adhered to the protocol, whereas only 70% and 50% among the enoxaparin and warfarin users, respectively, did. Only 56% were referred for hematological evaluation. The 12-week rate of adverse reactions was approximately 2%. The use of DOACs and the recommendation for further hematological evaluation increased over time.

Conclusions: Clinician training regarding discharge of VTE patients from the ED should continue.

June 2023
Jonathan Abraham Demma MD, Lisandro Luques MD PhD, Lior Cohen MD, Uri P. Dior MD, Gad Marom MD, Asaf Kedar MD, Naama Lev Cohain MD, Alon Pikarsky MD, Gidon Almogy MD, Liat Appelbaum MD

Background: Abdominal pathology in pregnant patients is a frequent challenge for emergency department physicians. Ultrasound is the imaging modality of choice but is inconclusive in approximately one-third of cases. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is becoming increasingly available, even in acute settings. Multiple studies have defined the sensitivity and specificity of MRI in this population.

Objectives: To evaluate the use of MRI findings in pregnant patients presenting with acute abdominal complaints to the emergency department.

Methods: This retrospective cohort study was conducted at a single institution. Data were collected on pregnant patients who underwent an MRI for acute abdominal complaints between 2010 and 2019 at a university center. Patient demographics, diagnosis at admission, ultrasound and MRI findings, and discharge diagnosis were recorded and evaluated.

Results: In total, 203 pregnant patients underwent an MRI for acute abdominal complaints during the study period. MRI was found without pathology in 138 cases (68%). In 65 cases (32%), the MRI showed findings that could explain the patient's clinical presentation. Patients presenting with long-standing abdominal pain (> 24 hours), fever, leukocytosis, or elevated C-reactive protein values were at a significantly increased risk of having an acute pathology. In 46 patients (22.6%), MRI findings changed the primary diagnosis and management while in 45 patients (22.1%) MRI findings improved characterization of the suspected pathology.

Conclusions: MRI is helpful when clinical and sonographic findings are inconclusive, leading to changes in patient management in more than one-fifth of patients.

Ibrahim Marai MD, Josef Steier MD, lia Novic MD, Ali Sakhnini MD, Liza Grosman-Rimon, Batsheva Tzadok MD

Background: The evaluation of syncope in emergency departments (EDs) and during hospitalization can be ineffective. The European Society of Cardiology (ESC) guidelines were established to perform the evaluation based on risk stratification.

Objectives: To investigate whether the initial screening of syncope adheres to the recent ESC guidelines.

Methods: Patients with syncope who were evaluated in our ED were included in the study and retrospectively classified based on whether they were treated according to ESC guidelines. Patients were divided into two groups according to the ESC guideline risk profile: high risk or low risk.

Results: The study included 114 patients (age 50.6 ± 21.9 years, 43% females); 74 (64.9%) had neurally mediated syncope, 11 (9.65%) had cardiac syncope, and 29 (25.45%) had an unknown cause. The low-risk group included 70 patients (61.4%), and the high-risk group included 44 (38.6%). Only 48 patients (42.1%) were evaluated according to the ESC guidelines. In fact, 22 (36.7%) of 60 hospitalizations and 41 (53.2%) of 77 head computed tomography (CT) scans were not mandatory according to guidelines. The rate of unnecessary CT scans (67.3% vs. 28.6%, respectively, P = 0.001) and unnecessary hospitalization (66.7% vs. 6.7%, respectively, P < 0.02) were higher among low-risk patients than high-risk patients. Overall, a higher percentage of high-risk patients were treated according to guidelines compared to low-risk patients (68.2% vs. 25.7% respectively, P < 0.0001).

Conclusions: Most syncope patients, particularly those with a low-risk profile, were not evaluated in accordance with the ESC guidelines.

April 2023
Maali Abu-Omer, Gilad Chayen, Ron Jacob

Background: Children with forearm fractures who present to the emergency department (ED) often need a closed reduction. In our institution, until 2017, pediatric trauma patients presented to the general trauma ED (GTED) where no sedation services for pediatric patients were available. From 2017, patients presented to the pediatric emergency department (PED) where closed reductions were performed under sedation when appropriate.

Objectives: To compare GTED and PED with regard to length of stay (LOS) and hospitalization rates of pediatric patients with forearm fractures who needed a closed reduction.

Methods: Our retrospective observational study was conducted at a regional hospital. The study population consisted of all patients younger than 18 years of age who presented to the ED with a forearm fracture that needed a closed reduction. The primary outcome measure was the hospitalization rate. The secondary outcome measure was LOS in the ED.

Results: The study comprised 165 patients with forearm fractures who needed a closed reduction; 79 presented to the GTED, and 96 presented to the PED. Hospitalization rates were lower for patients undergoing closed reduction under sedation in the PED compared to the GTED (6.3% and 21.5%, respectively; P = 0.003). Median ED LOS was longer among patients undergoing sedation in the PED compared to the GTED (237 vs. 168 minutes respectively, P < 0.0001).

Conclusions: Sedation for forearm fracture reduction in a hospital’s PED was associated with a decrease of more than three times in hospitalization rate. Despite the need for more resources, PED LOS was only mildly increased.

Avshalom Oziri MD, Michael Schnapper MD, Adi Ovadia MD, Shirli Abiri MD, Gila Meirson MD, Ilona Brantz RN, Osnat Blass Oziri, Diana Tasher MD, Avigdor Mandelberg MD, Ilan Dalal MD

Background: The global refugee crises have raised concerns among medical communities worldwide; nonetheless, access to healthcare has rarely been studied even though refugees are a medically high-risk group.

Objectives: To compare pediatric department admission rates from the pediatric emergency department (PED) of refugees and Israelis.

Methods: We compared data from refugee and Israeli children admitted to the pediatric department at Wolfson Medical Center in Israel between 2013–2017.

Results: A total of 104,244 patients (aged 0–18 years) came to the PED. Admission rate to the pediatric department for refugees was 695/2541 (27%) compared to 11,858/101,703 (11.7%) Israeli patients (P < 0.001). Hospital stay for patients 0–2-years of age was 3.22 ± 4.80 days for refugees vs. 2.78 ± 3.17 for Israelis (P < 0.03). Re-admission rate within 7 days was 1.3% for refugees and 2.6% for Israelis (P < 0.05). Dermatological diseases (e.g., impetigo and cellulitis) were more frequent in refugees (23.30% vs. 13.15%, P < 0.01); however, acute gastroenteritis and respiratory diagnoses were more common in Israelis (18.52% vs. 11.72%, P < 0.05 and 14.84% vs. 6.26%, P < 0.01, respectively). Neurological diseases (e.g., febrile convulsions) were also more frequent in Israelis (7.7% vs. 3%, P < 0.05). Very significantly, 23% of refugees had no healthcare coverage, while only 0.2% of the Israelis had none (P < 0.001).

Conclusions: We found significant morbidity in refugees compared to the local Israeli pediatric population, highlighting the need for different approaches for each population.

January 2023
Yehonatan Azulai BA, Shepard Schwartz MD, Eyal Heiman MD, Elihay Berliner MD, Giora Weiser MD

Background: Clinical dysentery causes hundreds of thousands of deaths annually worldwide. However, current recommendations reserve antibiotics for those either clinically sick or with highly suspected cases of shigellosis. This treatment stems from rising antibiotic resistance. Children diagnosed with clinical dysentery in the pediatric emergency department (PED) are regarded more cautiously.

Objectives: To explore the use of antibiotics in children diagnosed with clinical dysentery in the PED.

Methods: A retrospective case study of children with clinical dysentery at a single PED during the years 2015 and 2018. Demographics as well as clinical findings were compared to culture results and antibiotic treatment.

Results: The study included 281 children who were diagnosed with clinical dysentery during the study period; 234 (83%) were treated with antibiotics. However, cultures were positive in only 162 cases (58%). Only 32% were Shigella spp. Younger age, fever, and leukocytosis were related to antibiotic treatment.

Conclusions: The diagnosis of clinical dysentery is misgiven commonly in the PED leading to widespread use of antibiotics when not indicated. This treatment may impact antibiotic resistance patterns. Further studies and interventions are necessary to create clear guidelines in the PED setting.

December 2022
Ayelet Shles MD, Giulia Pula MD, Omer Raviv MD, Dania Takagi MD, Hadas Yechiam MD, Ehud Rosenbloom MD

Background: Blood pressure (BP) is routinely measured while triaging children presenting to the pediatric emergency department (PED).

Objectives: To determine whether a medical clown shortens the time to acquire a BP measurement among children undergoing triage in the PED.

Methods: The study comprised 133 children. Patients were assigned to one of two groups: with a medical clown or without a medical clown.

Results: The presence of a medical clown led to a significantly shorter time to acquire a blood pressure measurement (60 ± 23 seconds vs. 81 ± 43.5 seconds, P < 0.001. Clowns had a significant effect on shortening total triage length among children of Jewish ethnicity compared to Arab ethnicity (113 ± 353.6 seconds vs. 154 ± 418 seconds, P = 0.012).

Conclusions: Using medical clowns while measuring BP during triage when used in a culturally appropriate manner shortens time.

November 2022
Niv Izhaki MD, Shay Perek MD, Mahmoud Agbaria BSc, Ayelet Raz-Pasteur MD

Pneumonia patients are susceptible to autonomic nervous system changes. Ultrashort HRV (usHRV) is the measurement of cyclic changes in heart rate over a period < 5 minutes.

Objectives: To describe usHRV in patients with pneumonia and assess the correlation with mortality.

Methods: We conducted a retrospective analysis, which included patients diagnosed with pneumonia in the emergency department (ED). UsHRV indices were calculated from a 10-second ED electrocardiogram and correlated with mortality utilizing logistic and Cox regressions.

Results: The study comprised 240 patients. Mortality rates over 30, 90, and 365 days were 13%, 18%, and 30%, respectively. usHRV frequency-domain parameters had significant univariate correlations with mortality. Normalized low frequency (LF) and high frequency (HF) were correlated with 30-, 90-, and 365-day mortality in an opposite direction (odds ratio [OR] 0.094, P = 0.028 vs. OR 4.589, P =0.064; OR 0.052, P = 0.002 vs. OR 6.975, P =0.008; OR 0.055, P < 0.001 vs. OR 7.931, P < 0.001; respectively). Survival analysis was conducted for a follow-up median period of 5.86 years (interquartile range 0.65–9.77 years). Univariate Cox proportional hazard regression revealed time-domain indices with significant correlation with survival (SDNN and RMSSD; hazard ratio [HR] 1.005, 1.005; P = 0.032, P = 0.005; respectively) as well as frequency-domain parameters (normalized LF, HF, LF/HF ratio, and total power; HR 0.102, 5.002, 0.683, 0.997, respectively; P < 0.001).

Conclusions: usHRV may predict mortality in pneumonia patients and serve as a novel risk stratification tool.

May 2022
Issac Levy MD, Dolev Dollberg MD, Ron Berant MD, and Ronit Friling MD

Background: Data on how the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) affected consultations in ophthalmic departments are sparse.

Objectives: To examine the epidemiology of ophthalmic consultations in a large pediatric emergency medicine department (PED) during the first nationwide COVID-19 lockdown in Israel.

Methods: The database of a tertiary pediatric medical center was retrospectively reviewed for patients aged < 18 years who attended the PED from 17 March to 30 April 2020 (first COVID-19 lockdown) and the corresponding period in 2019. Background, clinical, and disease-related data were collected from the medical charts and compared between groups.

Results: The study included 757 PED visits. There were no significant differences in demographics between the groups. The 2020 period was characterized by a decrease in PED visits (by 52%), increase in arrivals during late afternoon and evening (P = 0.013), decrease in visits of older children (age 5–10 year), and proportional increase in younger children (age 1–5 years) (P = 0.011). The most common diagnoses overall and during each period was trauma followed by conjunctivitis and eyelid inflammation. The mechanisms of trauma differed (P = 0.002), with an increase in sharp trauma and decrease in blunt trauma in 2020 (P < 0.001 for both). In 2020, 95% of traumatic events occurred in the home compared to 54% in 2019 (P < 0.001).

Conclusions: Parents need to learn appropriate preventive and treatment measures to prevent serious and long-term ophthalmic injury while minimizing their exposure to the COVID-19. PEDs and ophthalmic pediatric clinics should consider increasing use of telemedicine and the availability of more senior physicians as consultants during such times.

January 2022
Brice Nguedia Vofo MD, Ana Navarrete MD, Jaime Levy MD, and Itay Chowers MD

Background: In response to the coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, routine clinical visits to the ophthalmic emergency department (OED) were deferred, while emergency cases continued to be seen.

Objectives: To assess the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic for ophthalmic emergencies.

Methods: A retrospective chart analysis of patients who presented to the OED during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic was conducted. The proportions of traumatic, non-traumatic-urgent, and non-traumatic-non-urgent presentations in 2020 were compared to those of the same time period in 2019. Duration of chief complains and best-corrected visual acuity were also assessed.

Results: There were 144 OED visits in 2020 compared to 327 OED visits during the same 3-week-period in 2019. Lower mean age of OED patients was present in 2020. Logarithmic expression (LogMAR) best corrected visual acuity (BVCA) was similar in both years. In 2020 there was a reduction in traumatic, non-traumatic-urgent, and non-traumatic-non-urgent cases compared to 2019 (15.4% reduction, P = 0.038; 57.6% reduction, P = 0.002; 74.6% reduction, P = 0.005, respectively). There was a higher proportion of same-day presentations at commencement of symptoms in 2020 compared with 2019 (52.8% vs. 38.8%, respectively P = 0.006).

Conclusions: During the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of OED visits at a tertiary hospital dropped by more than half. Although the drop in visits was mostly due to decrease in non-traumatic-non-urgent cases, there was also decrease in non-traumatic-urgent presentations with possible important visual consequences. Additional studies should elucidate what happened to these patients

Yehuda Hershkovitz MD, Yaniv Zager MD, Batia Segal MD, and Yoram Klein MD

Background: Emergency surgical repair is the standard approach to the management of an incarcerated abdominal wall hernia (IAWH). In cases of very high-risk patients, manual closed reduction (MCR) of IAWH may prevent the need for emergency surgery.

Objectives: To evaluate the safety, success rate, and complications of MCR in the management of IAWH conducted in an emergency department.

Methods: The data of all patients who underwent MCR between 2012 and 2018 were retrospectively collected. Patient demographics, presenting symptoms, clinical parameters, and management during the hospitalization were retrieved from the medical charts.

Results: Overall, 548 patients underwent MCR during the study period. The success rate was 25.4% (139 patients). One patient had a complication that required a laparotomy 2 days after his discharge. A recurrent incarceration occurred in 23%, 60% of them underwent successful repeated MCR and the others underwent emergency surgery. Six patients (1.4%) had a bowel perforation after a failed MCR.

Conclusions: MCR can be performed safely in the emergency department and should be consider as an option to treat IAWH, especially in high operative risk patients

October 2021
Michael Goldenshluger MD, Hen Chaushu MS, Guy Ron MD, Haya Fogel-Grinvald MHA, Shay Mandler MD, Liron Miller MBA PhD, Nir Horesh MD, Batia Segal RN MA, Uri Rimon MD, and Yoram Klein MD

Background: Extra peritoneal packing (EPP) is a quick and highly effective method to control pelvic hemorrhage.

Objectives: To determine whether EPP can be as safely and efficiently performed in the emergency department (ED) as in the operating room (OR).

Methods: Retrospective study of 29 patients who underwent EPP in the ED or OR in two trauma centers in Israel 2008–2018.

Results: Our study included 29 patients, 13 in the ED-EPP group and 16 in the OR-EPP group. The mean injury severity score (ISS) was 34.9 ± 11.8. Following EPP, hemodynamic stability was successfully achieved in 25 of 29 patients (86.2%). A raise in the mean arterial pressure (MAP) with a median of 25 mmHg (mean 30.0 ± 27.5, P < 0.001) was documented. All patients who did not achieve hemodynamic stability after EPP had multiple sources of bleeding or fatal head injury and eventually succumbed. Patients who underwent EPP in the ED showed higher change in MAP (P = 0.0458). The overall mortality rate was 27.5% (8/29) with no difference between the OR and ED-EPP. No differences were found between ED and OR-EPP in the amount of transfused blood products, surgical site infections, and length of stay in the hospital. However, patients who underwent ED-EPP were more prone to develop deep vein thrombosis (DVT): 50% (5/10) vs. 9% (1/11) in ED and OR-EPP groups respectively (P = 0.038).

Conclusions: EPP is equally effective when performed in the ED or OR with similar surgical site infection rates but higher incidence of DVT

July 2021
Osama Muhtaseb MD, Evan Avraham Alpert MD, and Shamai A. Grossman MD MS

Background: Syncope is a common reason for emergency department (ED) visits; however, the decision to admit or discharge patients after a syncopal episode remains challenging for emergency physicians. Decision rules such as the Boston Syncope Criteria have been developed in an attempt to aid clinicians in identifying high-risk patients as well as those who can be safely discharged, but applying these rules to different populations remains unclear.

Objectives: To determine whether the Boston Syncope Criteria are valid for emergency department patients in Israel.

Methods: This retrospective cohort convenience sample included patients who visited a tertiary care hospital in Jerusalem from August 2018 to July 2019 with a primary diagnosis of syncope. Thirty-day follow-up was performed using a national health system database. The Boston Syncope Criteria were retrospectively applied to each patient to determine whether they were at high risk for an adverse outcome or critical intervention, versus low risk and could be discharged.

Results: A total of 198 patients fulfilled the inclusion criteria and completed follow-up. Of these, 21 patients had either an adverse outcome or critical intervention. The rule detected 20/21 with a sensitivity of 95%, a specificity of 66%, and a negative predictive value of 99%.

Conclusions: The Boston Syncope Criteria may be useful for physicians in other locations throughout the world to discharge low-risk syncope patients as well as identify those at risk of complications

May 2021
Vladimir Poletaev MD, Dante Antonelli MD, Galina Litskevich MD, and Yoav Turgeman MD

Background: The cold season seems to be a trigger for atrial fibrillation (AF). Some reports are controversial and demonstrate variability according to the climatic characteristics in different regions.

Objective: To analyze whether meteorological factors contribute to seasonal variation of exacerbation of AF diagnosed in patients referred to the emergency department (ED) of our hospital.

Methods: We retrospectively reviewed medical data of consecutive patients admitted to the ED with symptomatic acute onset AF from 1 January 2016 to 31 December 2018. We recorded the mean monthly outdoor temperature, barometric pressure, and relative humidity during the study period.

Results: During the study period, 1492 episodes of AF were recorded. New onset AF were 639 (42.8%) and paroxysmal atrial fibrillation (PAF) were 853 (57.2%) (P = 0.03). The number of overall admission of AF episodes was not distributed uniformly through the year. Incidence of AF episodes peaked during December and was lowest in June (P = 0.049). Of 696 episodes (46.6 %) the patients were hospitalized and for 796 (53.4%) the patients were discharged (0.01). The number of hospitalizations was not distributed uniformly through the year (P = 0.049). The highest number of hospitalizations happened in December and the lowest in May. Outdoor temperature and barometric pressure (but not relative humidity) may mediate a monthly fluctuation in AF episodes with highest number of ED visits in December and the lowest in June.

Conclusions: Meteorological conditions influence exacerbation of AF episodes and hospitalization. Outdoor temperature and barometric pressure may mediate a monthly fluctuation in AF

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