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עמוד בית
Mon, 15.07.24

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May 2024
Oshrit Hoffer PhD, Moriya Cohen BS, Maya Gerstein MD, Vered Shkalim Zemer MD, Yael Richenberg MD, Shay Nathanson MD, Herman Avner Cohen MD

Background: Group A Streptococcus (GAS) is the predominant bacterial pathogen of pharyngitis in children. However, distinguishing GAS from viral pharyngitis is sometimes difficult. Unnecessary antibiotic use contributes to unwanted side effects, such as allergic reactions and diarrhea. It also may increase antibiotic resistance. 

Objectives: To evaluate the effect of a machine learning algorithm on the clinical evaluation of bacterial pharyngitis in children.

Methods: We assessed 54 children aged 2–17 years who presented to a primary healthcare clinic with a sore throat and fever over 38°C from 1 November 2021 to 30 April 2022. All children were tested with a streptococcal rapid antigen detection test (RADT). If negative, a throat culture was performed. Children with a positive RADT or throat culture were considered GAS-positive and treated antibiotically for 10 days, as per guidelines. Children with negative RADT tests throat cultures were considered positive for viral pharyngitis. The children were allocated into two groups: Group A streptococcal pharyngitis (GAS-P) (n=36) and viral pharyngitis (n=18). All patients underwent a McIsaac score evaluation. A linear support vector machine algorithm was used for classification.

Results: The machine learning algorithm resulted in a positive predictive value of 80.6 % (27 of 36) for GAS-P infection. The false discovery rates for GAS-P infection were 19.4 % (7 of 36).

Conclusions: Applying the machine-learning strategy resulted in a high positive predictive value for the detection of streptococcal pharyngitis and can contribute as a medical decision aid in the diagnosis and treatment of GAS-P.

February 2019
Assaf Hoofien MD, Yael Mozer MD, Anat Guz-Mark MD, Vered Hoffer MD, Daniel Landau MD and Raanan Shamir MD
January 2012
Nirit Segal, MD, Ben-Zion Garty, MD, Vered Hoffer, MD and Yael Levy, MD.

Background: Patients with allergy as well as their parents frequently fail to use the self-administered epinephrine injection (EpiPen®) properly in cases of allergic emergencies.

Objectives: To determine the benefit of an instruction session with follow-up instruction.

Methods: We evaluated 141 patients aged 1.9–23.4 years (median 5.8 years, 83% with food allergy) or their parents (for those aged < 12 years) who were trained in the use of the EpiPen during the first diagnostic visit to the allergy clinic during 2006–2009. At the next follow-up visit, the patients or their parents were asked to list the indications for epinephrine administration and to demonstrate the five steps involved in using the EpiPen. Each step was scored on a scale of 0–2.

Results: Fourteen participants (9.9%) had used self-injectable epinephrine in the past. Only 65 (46%) brought the device with them to the follow-up visit. The mean total score for the whole sample was 4.03 ± 3. Fifty-three participants (38%) failed to remove the cap before trying to apply the device. Only 8 (5.6%) had a maximum score. The patients and their parents were reinstructed in the use of the device: 41 participants were reexamined at a subsequent follow-up visit after 1.02 ± 0.56 years their mean score improved from 4.71 ± 3.04 to 6.73 ± 3.18 (P < 0.001).

Conclusions: Patients with severe allergic reactions, as well as their parents, are not sufficiently skilled in the use of the EpiPen after only one instruction session with a specialist. Repeated instruction may improve the results and we therefore recommend that the instructions be repeated at every follow-up visit.

March 2010
D. Kraus, J. Yacobovich, V. Hoffer, O. Scheuerman, H. Tamary and B-Z. Garty
December 2009
May 2008
July 2007
O.Scheuerman, L.de Beaucoudrey, V.Hoffer, J.Feinberg, J.L.Casanova, and B.Z.Garty
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