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עמוד בית
Thu, 18.07.24

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February 2022
Sara Dovrat PhD, Ela Kashi-Zagdoun BSc, Zvia Soufiev BSc, Ella Mendelson PhD, and Tzion Schlossberg MD

Background: Infections in neonates with herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) following circumcision due to Metzitzah Be'Peh (MBP) performed by a Mohel occur each year in small numbers. One solution to this problem is the use of a mucus extractor device instead of MBP, which has been authorized by some rabbis. Yet, using a mucus extractor remains controversial among ultra-Orthodox Jews; thus, creating a need for additional solutions.

Objectives: To seek to reduce HSV-1 infection of neonates due to MBP.

Methods: We tested several oral rinse solutions for their ability to destroy virus infectivity following incubation for 30 seconds and using plaque reduction assays.

Results: Corsodyl, Decapinol, and Listerine® all destroyed plaques formation of spiked virus, while Gengigel and Tantum Verde were found to be less effective. We focused specifically on Listerine® due to its efficacy in eliminating contagious HSV-1 from saliva after a 30-second oral rinse. Five different products of Listerine® reduced the infectivity of a spiked virus by more than 4 orders of magnitude in 30 seconds. We also showed that Listerine (up to 7% v/v) can stay in the mouth but did not harm living cells and therefore will not cause any damage to the injured tissue.

Conclusions: Significant reduction in cases of infection with HSV-1 due to MBP can be achieved if Mohalim consistently adopt the practice of careful mouth washing with Listerine® just before performing MBP.

February 2020
Hussein Zaitoon MD, Ellen Bamberger MD, Liat Yaniv MD, Bracha Mendelson MD, Isaac Srugo MD and Irina Chistyakov MD

Background: The introduction of pneumococcal conjugate vaccine-13 (PCV-13) has reduced the burden of invasive pneumococcal disease.

Objective: To characterize true positive blood cultures of children who presented to our hospital following implementation of the PCV-13 vaccine.

Methods: A retrospective study was conducted on positive blood cultures of children presenting with fever from 2010–2017. Subjects were divided into two age groups: a younger group 3–36 months and an older group 3–18 years. Patients were classified as either having or not having a focus of infection at the time of their bacteremia. Pneumococcal isolates were typed at Israel's Streptococcal Reference Laboratory.

Results: The samples included 94 true positive blood cultures. Focal infection with concomitant bacteremia was more common than bacteremia without a focus both overall: 67/94 (71%) vs. 27/94 (28.7%), P <0.001 as well as in the two groups: 32/48 (66%) vs. 16/48 (33%), P = 0.02 in the younger group and 35/46 (76%) vs. 11/46 (24%), P = 0.001 in the older group. Streptococcus pneumoniae was the most common pathogen overall, 27/94 (29%), and in the younger group, 21/48 (44%), but rare in the older group, 6/46 (13%). In the latter, Brucella species predominated, 12/46 (26%), along with Staphylococcus aureus 12/46 (26%).

Conclusions: Our findings are consistent with other studies reporting decreased pneumococcal bacteremia, bacteremia primarily accompanying focal infection, and changing etiological agents among PCV-13-vaccinated children. Brucella species was prominent in older children with osteoarticular infections. Ongoing surveillance is warranted to better understand the implications of PCV-13.

June 2013
G. Barkai, A. Barzilai, E. Mendelson, M. Tepperberg-Oikawa, D. Ari-Even Roth and J. Kuint
 Background: Congenital cytomegalovirus (C-CMV) infection affects 0.4–2% of newborn infants in Israel, most of whom are asymptomatic. Of these, 10–20% will subsequently develop hearing impairment and might have benefitted from early detection by neonatal screening.

Objectives: To retrospectively analyze the results of a screening program for C-CMV performed at the Sheba Medical Center, Tel Hashomer, during a 1 year period, using real-time polymerase chain reaction (rt-PCR) from umbilical cord blood.

Methods: CMV DNA was detected by rt-PCR performed on infants’ cord blood. C-CMV was confirmed by urine culture (Shell-vial). All confirmed cases were further investigated for C-CMV manifestations by head ultrasound, complete blood count, liver enzyme measurement, ophthalmology examination and hearing investigation.

Results: During the period 1 June 2009 to 31 May 2010, 11,022 infants were born at the Sheba Medical Center, of whom 8105 (74%) were screened. Twenty-three (0.28%) were positive for CMV and 22 of them (96%) were confirmed by urine culture. Two additional infants, who had not been screened, were detected after clinical suspicion. All 24 infants were further investigated, and 3 (12.5%) had central nervous system involvement (including hearing impairment) and were offered intravenous ganciclovir for 6 weeks. Eighteen (82%) infants would not otherwise have been diagnosed.

Conclusions: The relatively low incidence of C-CMV detected in our screening program probably reflects the low sensitivity of cord blood screening. Nevertheless, this screening program reliably detected a non-negligible number of infants who could benefit from early detection. Other screening methods using saliva should be investigated further.


May 2006
L.M. Shulman, Y. Manor, D. Sofer, T. Swartz and E. Mendelson

Background: Poliovirus rapidly evolves by nucleic acid substitutions and genetic recombination with other polioviruses and non-polio enteroviruses. Evolving oral poliovirus (Sabin strains) can rapidly revert to neurovirulence and undergo antigenic alterations.

Objectives: To evaluate the threat of vaccine-derived poliovirus (1–15% divergence from the respective Sabin strain) for a poliomyelitis-free population in a country with a long-standing routine vaccination program.

Methods: We characterized genetic and antigenic changes in OPV[1] strains isolated from sewage in Israel and evaluated intestinal immunity by measuring fecal excretion after OPV challenge of vaccinated children.

Results: Characterization of poliovirus from sewage revealed eight type 2 and three type 3 vaccine polioviruses that had replicated and started to evolve (vaccine that replicated and diverged by 0.5 to ≤ 1.0%) and nine highly diverged type 2 vaccine-derived polioviruses (1–15% divergence from the respective Sabin strain) with 8–14% divergence between the years 1998 and 2005. Six of the eleven VRPV[2] uniquely recombined with OPV and/or NPEV[3]. The nine VDPV[4] were epidemically related, genotypically neurovirulent, and had 10–15 amino acid substitutions in antigenic sites altering their antigenicity, but shared a single recombination. Type 2 OPV was excreted by 23% and 17% of infants challenged with OPV 3 months after partial immunization (two doses each of OPV and enhanced inactivated poliovirus) or full immunization (three doses of each) respectively, despite high humoral antibody titers.

Conclusions: Our findings, which show that OPV is excreted for a significant period by children with high humoral immunity, emphasize the long-term potential threat from VDPV in highly vaccinated populations. An adequate immunization program, combined with environmental surveillance, is necessary to prevent poliomyelitis and community transmission of poliovirus. 


[1] OPV = oral poliovirus

[2] VRPV = vaccine poliovirus that has replicated and started to evolve but is < 1 % but at least 0.5% diverged from the respective Sabin strain

[3] NPEV = non-polio enterovirus

[4] VDPV = vaccine-derived poliovirus 1–15% divergence from the respective Sabin strain

June 2002
Yoav Mattan, MD, Alice Dimant, MD, Rami Mosheiff, MD, Amos Peyser, MD, Steven Mendelson, MD and Meir Liebergall, MD

Background: Femoral hip fractures are a common occurrence in the elderly. Of the various fracture patterns, intertrochanteric injuries have the lowest rate of complications. Case reports of ensuing subcapital fracture have all been linked to incorrect placement of fixation devices or to osteomyelitis, while cases of avascular necrosis have only been reported rarely in the literature and are considered to occur at the rare rate of 0.8%.

Objectives: To check the incidence and outcome of AVN[1] in intertrochanteric hip fractures.

Methods and Results: In a retrospective analysis of patients who had surgical treatment for intertrochanteric fractures, 10 patients (0.5%) underwent dynamic hip screw fixation for intertrochanteric fractures and subsequently developed painful AVN as their primary presentation. Three of these patients were also found to have subcapital fractures. On revision of the primary fixation no fault was found with nail placement.

Conclusions: The reported rate of AVN may be understated since many patients have limiting factors that prevent them from consulting a physician when in pain, and one-third of these patients die within 2 years. Therefore, we suggest that hip pain following fixation of an intertrochanteric fracture should prompt the clinician to consider the rare possibility of AVN or subcapital fracture.


[1] AV = avascular necrosis

December 2001
Tamar Peled MSc, Michael Weingarten BM BCh, Noemi Varsano MSc, Andre Matalon MD, Adi Fuchs MD, Robert D. Hoffman MD, Charna Zeltcer MD, Ernesto Kahan MD MPH, Ella Mendelson PhD and Tiberio A. Swartz MD MPH

Background: Each winter influenza activity is a major cause of morbidity and mortality both in Israel and worldwide.

Objectives: To identify the influenza viruses active in Israel during the winter season and to assess the extent of influenza morbidity.

Methods: Information was collected on a population of 18,684 individuals enrolled in two community clinics in central Israel. It included the total number of visits for acute respiratory infection – including influenza and influenza-like illness (ARI/flu-like) – during a 20 week surveillance period (23 November 1997 to 27 March 1998) and the percent of influenza virus isolates in nasopharyngeal specimens from a sample of patients with ARI/flu-like collected on a weekly basis during the same period.

Results: A total of 5,947 visits for ARI/flu-like were recorded among 18,684 enrolled patients in two community clinics (18.1%). The progressive increase in the number of visits for ARI/flu-like reached a peak on week 2/98 with 597 visits and a rate of 31.95 visits per 1,000 population. After this, a decrease to the initial values was evident by week 12/98. Most affected patients were in the age groups 5–14 and 65 years and over, with a rate of 733.5 and 605.3 visits per 1,000 population, respectively. Influenza virus was isolated from 92 of the 426 nasopharyngeal specimens (21.6%). The most commonly detected strain was A/Sydney/5/97(H3N2) like (77.2%). The peak rate of isolates was recorded at the beginning of January (01/98).

Conclusions: A/Sydney/5/97(H3N2) like-strain was the dominant influenza virus. Its presence did not prevent the simultaneous activity of influenza A/H1N1 virus. The dynamic of the clinical disease as expressed by the weekly visit rate for ARI/flu-like was similar to the temporal pattern of the virological findings. The extent of morbidity suggests moderate epidemic activity.

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