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עמוד בית
Tue, 28.05.24

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May 2024
Elena Korytnikova MD, Maayan Elnir Katz MD, Itzhak Gabizon MD, Tamar Eshkoli MD

Phosphoglucomutase 1 (PGM1) deficiency is a rare genetic disorder that affects glycogen metabolism and manifests as a multisystem disease. Most patients present with oropharyngeal malformations, cardiomyopathies, elevated liver enzymes, and hypoglycemia. Treatment with D-galactose has been shown to improve symptoms. Our patient presented with PGM1 deficiency. She conceived spontaneously. Throughout her pregnancies, our patient was monitored by a multidisciplinary team of cardiologists, endocrinologists, and physicians with experience in high-risk pregnancy. She delivered twice by cesarean section. Our case highlights the importance of a multidisciplinary approach and individualized management of prenatal and postpartum care of a patient with a PGM1 deficiency. To the best of our knowledge, there have been no reports about a PGM1-deficient patient who conceived and delivered.

November 2023
Lior Benjamin Pilas MD, Orit Gur BSc, Gidon Berger MD

Background: In the past decade, numerous new imaging and laboratory tests have been implemented that significantly contribute to improved medical diagnostic capabilities. However, inappropriate utilization, which occurs on a large scale, has significant ramifications for both patient care and health systems.

Objectives: To assess the impact of a novel clinical decision support system (CDSS) applied to our electronic medical records on abdominal ultrasonography utilization pattern.

Methods: We conducted a retrospective cohort study comparing patterns of abdominal ultrasound utilization in cases of liver enzyme elevation, with and without CDSS, between February and May in 2017 (before CDSS implementation) and during the same months in 2018 (after CDSS implementation). The following parameters were collected: number of tests ordered according to the guidelines, tests with a diagnostic value, and order forms completed with any data or a diagnostic question. The comparison was conducted using chi-square test.

Results: Of 152 abdominal ultrasound tests, 72 were ordered in the pre-implementation period and 80 in the post-implementation period. The system failed to reach statistical significance regarding the rates of ordered tests according to the guidelines and/or tests with a diagnostic value. However, the use of the CDSS had a statistically significant impact regarding completing the order form with data, including a specific diagnostic question.

Conclusions: The effect of the system on the efficiency of test utilization was partial. However, our findings strongly suggested that CDSS has the potential to promote proper usage of complementary technologies.

May 2023
Ola Gutzeit MD MSc, Zvi Millo MD, Naftali Justman MD, Natali Constantinescu MD, Ido Solt MD

Background: Uterine tachysystole during labor can lead to a decrease in fetal oxygen saturation and intracerebral oxygen saturation. Acute tocolysis using atosiban can inhibit uterine smooth muscle activity, potentially improving fetal status and facilitating vaginal delivery or allowing time to prepare for operative delivery.

Objectives: To compare maternal and neonatal outcomes in cesarean and vaginal deliveries following atosiban administration during fetal prolonged deceleration and tachysystole at gestational age 37 0/7 to 43 0/7 weeks.

Methods: We conducted a single-center, descriptive retrospective cohort study at a large tertiary referral center.

Results: Of the 275 patients treated with atosiban, 186 (68%) delivered vaginally (either spontaneous delivery or instrumental delivery) and 89 (32%) underwent a cesarean delivery. In a univariate analysis, cesarean delivery was associated with higher body mass index (27.9 ± 4.3 vs. 30.2 ± 4.8, P = 0.003). Second stage atosiban administration was associated with vaginal delivery (89.3% vs. 10.7%, P = 0.01). Cesarean delivery was associated with lower Apgar at 1 and 5 minutes and a higher rate of neonatal intensive care unit admissions. The incidence of PPH among women treated with atosiban in our study (2.3–4.3%) was higher than the incidence reported in the literature (1–3%)  

Conclusions: Atosiban may be an effective acute intervention for non-reassuring fetal heart rate during tachysystole, increasing the rate of vaginal delivery and potentially reducing the need for cesarean delivery. However, the potential risk of postpartum hemorrhage should be taken into consideration.

March 2023
Mahmud Mahamid MD, Bashar Fteiha MD, Eran Goldin, William Nseir MD

Background: Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is one of the most prevalent chronic liver disorders. Acute cholangitis (AC) is a life-threatening illness.

Objective: To determine whether NAFLD is a risk factor for the severity of AC.

Methods: We retrospectively studied hospitalized patients with a diagnosis of AC over 5 years. Patients were divided into a NAFLD group and a non-NAFLD group. We compared the two groups with regard to demographic characteristics, co-morbidities, laboratory data, and severity of AC (including Charlson Comorbidity Index [CCI] and Tokyo Consensus meeting criteria).

Results: In all, 298 of 419 hospitalized patients diagnosed with AC met the inclusion criteria. Of these, 73/298 (24.5%) were in the NAFLD group. NAFLD group patients were younger and more likely to be diabetic and obese than the non-NAFLD group. Participants in the NAFLD presented with higher serum C-reactive protein and higher liver enzymes (P < 0.05, for each parameter) and with more events of organ dysfunction (P < 0.001) and bacteremia (P < 0.005). Regarding the severity of AC according to Tokyo Consensus, among the NAFLD group more patients presented with Grade II (39.7 vs. 33.3%, P < 0.001) and Grade III (23.3 vs. 18.3, P < 0.001) cholangitis. More Grade I cholangitis was found among the non-NAFLD group (48.4 vs. 37%, P < 0.001). Multivariate logistic regression analysis showed that NAFLD was independently associated with severe AC, Grade III (odds ratio 3.25, 95% confidence interval 1.65–6.45, P = 0.038).

Conclusions: NAFLD is an independent risk factor for the severity of AC.

Yoav Siegler MD, Chen Ben David MD, Zeev Weiner MD, Ido Solt MD

Late, preterm premature rupture of the membranes (PPROM) presents a major obstetrical challenge balancing between iatrogenic prematurity and risk of prolonged rupture of membranes. In recent years, the pendulum has been shifting toward expectant management until gestation week 37 + 0. We examined the latest guidelines and major trials and summarized optimal management. We addressed the major dilemmas of women with PPROM during gestation weeks 34 + 0 to 36 + 6.

January 2023
Itai Kalisky MD, Yaakov Maor MD, Lilach Goldstein MD, Yael Inbar MD, Ziv Ben-Ari MD

Background: Acquired hepatocerebral degeneration (AHD) is a neurologic complication of severe chronic liver disease (CLD) with portosystemic shunts. The proposed etiology is manganese accumulation in the brain tissue, especially in the basal ganglia. Combination of clinical manifestation, mostly extrapyramidal movement disorders, and hyperintensities on T1-weighted brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is diagnostic. Although liver transplantation controversial, it is suggested for AHD.

Objectives: To depict clinical and neuroimaging characteristics and response to treatments in patients diagnosed with AHD at Sheba Medical Center.

Methods: Review of patients with AHD diagnosis at the Liver Diseases Center at Sheba Medical Center between 2012 and 2017, data of clinical and neuroimaging, follow-up, and response to treatments, including liver transplantation were recorded.

Results: Five patients with diagnosis of AHD were identified, median age at diagnosis 55 years (range 45–64 years). Four patients had cirrhosis at the time of AHD diagnosis. The main risk factor for AHD was the presence of portosystemic shunts. The most prevalent clinical manifestations were movement disorders, specifically a combination of extrapyramidal and cerebellar signs including instability, rigidity, tremor, bradykinesia, and cognitive impairment. Brain MRI revealed hyperintensities on T1-weighted images in the basal ganglia in all patients. Administration of antiparkinsonian drugs showed clinical improvement, whereas liver transplantation performed in two patients was not associated to neurological improvement.

Conclusions: AHD is related to portosystemic shunts. The combination of Parkinsonism and cerebellar signs and MRI pallidal lesions should alert physicians to the diagnosis. The role of liver transplantation in AHD is still controversial.

November 2022
Muhammad Awwad MD, Yury Peysakhovich MD, Jihad Bishara MD, Ilya Kagan MD, Assaf Issachar MD, Noa Eliakim Raz MD

Candida species inhabit the gastrointestinal tract. Isolation of Candida from the respiratory tract has been found and reflects colonization, particularly among mechanically ventilated patients [1]. However, the existence of candida as a respiratory pathogen was previously doubted. Candida pneumonia is a rare and challenging-to-diagnose entity. We present a histopathologically confirmed case of necrotizing Candida pneumonia and lung abscess in a solid organ transplant recipient.

September 2022
Omri Shental MD MHA, Ilan Y. Mitchnik MD, Edward Barayev MD MHA, Lior Solomon MD, Liron Gershovitz MD, Shaul Gelikas MD MBA, Avi Benov MD MHA, and Yuval Ran MD MHA MPA

Background: Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) led to two nationwide lockdowns in Israel, reducing both supply and demand for medical services in the Israel Defense Force (IDF). IDF soldiers serve on bases within Israel, and most of them return home at the end of the day, similar to other armies in the world.

Objectives: To analyze the health services provided by the IDF with regard to policy changes during lockdowns.

Methods: We compared medical encounters between different services provided by the IDF Medical Corps. We related them to specific time periods: pre-first lockdown, first lockdown (and corresponding timeframes of the previous 3 years), between lockdowns, second lockdown, and post-second lockdown.

Results: Compared to past periods, we found a similar reduction of 27–30% in primary care medical encounter rates during the two lockdowns: 42–43% in sick days and 50–54% in referrals to the emergency department. Referral rates to all specialist medical encounters and elective surgeries decreased significantly during the first lockdown period and increased 1.2–3.5 times during the second lockdown.

Conclusions: A continuance of the shift to telehealth is required to withstand a future lockdown, with a full supply of secondary medical services attuned to core medical issues relevant for combat personnel. A liberal sick leave policy is required to eliminate unnecessary in-person visits, thus reducing the risk of infection.

December 2021
Yana Davidov MD, Yeruham Kleinbaum MD, Yael Inbar MD, Oranit Cohen-Ezra MD, Ella Veitsman MD, Peretz Weiss MD, Mariya Likhter MD, Tania Berdichevski MD PhD, Sima Katsherginsky BA, Avishag Hassid MA, Keren Tsaraf MA, Dana Silverberg BSc, and Ziv Ben Ari MD

Background: New direct acting antiviral agent (DAA) therapies are associated with a high sustained virological response rate (SVR) in hepatitis C virus (HCV) patients. The understanding of the impact of SVR on fibrosis stage is limited.

Objectives: To determine the effect of treatment with the DAAs on long-term liver fibrosis stages, as determined by shear-wave elastography (SWE) or FibroTest©.

Methods: Fibrosis stage was determined at baseline and at 6-month intervals after end of treatment (EOT), using two‐dimensional SWE or FibroTest©; APRI and FIB-4 scores.

Results: The study comprised 133 SVR12 patients. After a median follow-up of 15 months (range 6–33), liver fibrosis stage decreased by at least 1 stage in 75/133 patients (56%). Cirrhosis reversal was observed in 24/82 (29%). Repeated median liver stiffness SWE values in cirrhotic patients were 15.1 kPa at baseline (range 10.5–100), 13.4 kPa (range 5.5–51) at 6 months, and 11.4 kPa (range 6.1–35.8) at 12 months after EOT, P = 0.01. During the second year after EOT, no statistically significant differences in liver fibrosis stage in 12, 18, and 24 months were found. Splenomegaly was the only significant negative predictor of liver fibrosis regression during all time points of repetitive noninvasive assessment.

Conclusions: Following successful DAA treatment, the majority of our HCV patients with advanced fibrosis demonstrated significant improvement, as assessed by non-invasive methods. Advanced fibrosis stage was a negative predictor of fibrosis regression. Longer follow-up periods are required to further establish the impact of DAAs treatment in HCV patients with advanced fibrosis

July 2021
Yair Binyamin MD, Philip Heesen MD, Igor Gruzman MD, Alexander Zlotnik MD PHD, Alexander Ioscovich MD, Ariel Ronen MD, Carolyn F. Weiniger MD, Dmitry Frank MD, Eyal Sheiner MD PHD, and Sharon Orbach-Zinger MD

Background: Our hospital used to perform cesarean delivery under general anesthesia rather than neuraxial anesthesia, mostly because of patient refusal of members of the conservative Bedouin society. According to recommendations implemented by the Israeli Obstetric Anesthesia Society, which were implemented due to the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) pandemic, we increased the rate of neuraxial anesthesia among deliveries.

Objectives: To compare the rates of neuraxial anesthesia in our cesarean population before and during SARS-CoV-2 pandemic.

Methods: We included consecutive women undergoing an elective cesarean delivery from two time periods: pre-SARS-CoV-2 pandemic (15 February 2019 to 14 April 2019) and during the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic (15 February 2020 to 15 April 2020). We collected demographic data, details about cesarean delivery, and anesthesia complications.

Results: We included 413 parturients undergoing consecutive elective cesarean delivery identified during the study periods: 205 before the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic and 208 during SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. We found a statistically significant difference in neuraxial anesthesia rates between the groups: before the pandemic (92/205, 44.8%) and during (165/208, 79.3%; P < 0.0001).

Conclusions: We demonstrated that patient and provider education about neuraxial anesthesia can increase its utilization. The addition of a trained obstetric anesthesiologist to the team may have facilitated this transition

April 2021
Tarek Saadi MD, Johad Khoury MD, Widad Toukan MD, Rimma Krimasky, Ella Veitsman MD, Yaacov Baruch MD, Diana Gaitini MD, and Nira Beck-Razi MD

Background: Point shear-wave elastography (pSWE) is a new method to assess the degree of liver fibrosis. It has been shown to be effective in detecting stiffness in viral hepatitis.

Objectives: To determine the feasibility of pSWE for assessing liver stiffness and fibrosis in liver diseases of different etiologies.

Methods: This prospective single-center study included a population of adult patients with chronic liver diseases from different etiologies, who were scheduled for liver biopsy, and a control group of healthy adults who prospectively underwent pSWE. Ten consecutive pSWE measurements of the liver were performed using a Philips iU22 ultrasound system. Stiffness degree was compared to liver biopsy results. Fibrosis degree was staged according to METAVIR scoring system.

Results: The study group was comprised of 202 patients who underwent liver biopsy and pSWE test and a control group consisting of 14 healthy adults who underwent pSWE for validation. In the study group, the median stiffness was 5.35 ± 3.37 kilopascal (kPa). The median stiffness for F0–1, F2, F3, and F4 as determined by liver biopsy results were 4.9 kPa, 5.4 kPa, 5.7 kPa, and 8 kPa, respectively. The median stiffness in the control group was 3.7 ± 0.6 kPa. Subgroup analyses were conducted for viral hepatitis vs. non-viral hepatitis and steatohepatitis vs. non-steatohepatitis groups.

Conclusions: pSWE is a reproducible method for assessing liver stiffness and is in a linear relationship with fibrosis degree as seen in pathology. Compared with patients with non-significant fibrosis, healthy controls showed significantly lower values

February 2021
Amir Mari MD, Tawfik Khoury MD, Mahamid Baker MD, Helal Said Ahmad MD, Fadi Abu Baker MD, and Mahmud Mahamid MD

Background: Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is emerging as an important public health condition. The effect of Ramadan fasting on several metabolic conditions has been previously assessed.

Objectives: To assess the impact of Ramadan fasting on non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) severity scores.

Methods: A retrospective, case control study was conducted in Nazareth Hospital between 2017 and 2019. We included NAFLD patients who had been diagnosed by abdominal ultrasonography. The study population was divided in two matched groups: NASH subjects who fasted all of Ramadan and NAFLD/NASH subjects who did not fast (control). Metabolic/NASH severity scores, homeostatic model assessment of β-cell function and insulin resistance (HOMA-IR), NAFLD Fibrosis Score (NFS), BARD scores, and fibrosis-4 (FIB4) scores were assessed in both groups before and after the Ramadan month.

Results: The study included 155 NASH subjects, 74 who fasted and 81 who did not. Among the fasting group, body mass index decreased from 36.7 ± 7.1 to 34.5 ± 6.8 after fasting (P < 0.003), NFS declined from 0.45 ± 0.25 to 0.23 ± 0.21 (P < 0.005), BARD scores declined from 2.3 ± 0.98 to 1.6 ± 1.01 (P < 0.005), and FIB4 scores declined from 1.93 ± 0.76 to 1.34 ± 0.871 (P < 0.005). C-reactive protein decreased from 14.2 ± 7.1 to 7.18 ± 6.45 (P < 0.005). Moreover, HOMA-IR improved from 2.92 ± 1.22 to 2.15 ± 1.13 (P < 0.005).

Conclusions: Ramadan fasting improved on inflammatory markers, insulin sensitivity, and noninvasive measures for NASH severity assessment.

August 2020
Raanan Meyer MD, Gabriel Levin MD, Natav Hendin BSc and Eldad Katorza MD

Background: Channeling medical resources for coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) management can potentially endanger routine healthcare practices. As a preventive measure, a department of obstetrics and gynecology in Israel constructed a separate, designated complex for its COVID-19-exposed patients.

Objectives: To evaluate the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic infection control measures on obstetric care in the obstetrical emergency department and delivery unit.

Methods: The authors collected data retrospectively from February 2020 to March 2020 and compared it to data of a parallel period in 2019.

Results: From 1 February 2020 to 28 March 2020, 3897 women were referred to the emergency department (ED), compared to 4067 the previous year. Mean duration of treatment until decision and referral indications did not differ between 2020 and 2019 (207 vs. 220 minutes, P = 0.26; urgent referrals 58.8% vs. 59.2%, P = 0.83). A per-week comparison showed a significant reduction in ED referrals only in the last week of the period (337 [2020] vs. 515 [2019], P < 0.001). The proportion of women admitted to the delivery unit in active labor was significantly higher in the last three weeks (39.1% vs. 28.2%, P = 0.005). During February and March 2020, 1666 women delivered, compared to 1654 during February and March 2019. The proportion of types and modes of delivery did not differ. In a per-week comparison, the number of deliveries did not differ (mean 208 vs. 206, P = 0.88).

Conclusions: With timely preparation and proper management, negative impact of COVID-19 can be reduced in obstetrical emergency departments.

May 2020
Mayson Abu Raya MD, Amir Klein MD, Edmond Sabo MD, Afif Yaccob MD MSc, Yaacov Baruch MD, Johad Khoury MD and Tarek Saadi MD

Background: Hepatitis C virus (HCV) is a leading cause of cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma worldwide. Several viral and host factors related to viral response have been reported in the era of treatment with pegylated (PEG)-interferon and ribavirin.

Objectives: To quantify histological findings from patients with chronic HCV using computerized morphometry and to investigate whether the results can predict response to medical treatment with peg-interferon and ribavirin.

Methods: We followed 58 patients with chronic HCV infection with METAVIR score F1 and F2 in our liver unit who were grouped according to treatment response sustained viral response (SVR) and non-SVR. Liver needle biopsies from these patients were evaluated and histological variables, such as inflammatory cells, collagen fibers and liver architecture, were quantified using computerized morphometrics. The pathologist who performed the histomorphometric analysis was blinded to previous patient clinical and histological information.

Results: Histomorphometric variables including the density of collagen fibers were collected. The number of inflammatory cells in the portal space and textural variable were found to be statistically significant and could be used together in a formula to predict response to treatment, with a sensitivity of 93% and a 100% specificity.

Conclusions: Histomorphometry may help to predict a patient's response to treatment at an early stage.

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