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עמוד בית
Sat, 20.04.24

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November 2012
K. Parakh, M.M. Kittleson, B. Heidecker, I.S. Wittstein, D.P. Judge, H.C. Champion, L.A. Barouch, K.L. Baughman, S.D. Russell, E.K. Kasper, K.K. Sitammagari and J.M. Hare

Background: Determining the prognosis of patients with heart failure is essential for patient management and clinical trial conduct. The relative value of traditional prognostic criteria remains unclear and the assessment of long-term prognosis for individual patients is problematic.

Objectives: To determine the ability of clinical, hemodynamic and echocardiographic parameters to predict the long-term prognosis of patients with idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy.

Methods: We investigated the ability of clinical, hemodynamic and echocardiographic parameters to predict the long-term prognosis of individual patients in a large, representative, contemporary cohort of idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy (IDCM) patients referred to Johns Hopkins from 1997 to 2004 for evaluation of cardiomyopathy. In all patients a baseline history was taken, and physical examination, laboratory studies, echocardiogram, right heart catheterization and endomyocardial biopsy were performed.

Results: In 171 IDCM patients followed for a median 3.5 years, there were 50 long-term event-free survivors (LTS) (median survival 6.4 years) and 34 patients died or underwent ventricular assist device placement or transplantation within 5 years (NLTS; non-long-term survivors) (median time to event 1.83 years. Established risk factors (gender, race, presence of diabetes, serum creatinine, sodium) and the use of accepted heart failure medications (angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors, angiotensin receptor blockers, beta blockers) were similar between the two groups. Although LTS had younger age, higher ejection fraction (EF) and lower New York Heart Association (NYHA) class at presentation, the positive predictive value of an EF< 25% was 64% (95% CI 41%–79%) and of NYHA class > 2 was 53% (95% CI 36–69%). A logistic model incorporating these three variables incorrectly classified 29% of patients.

Conclusions: IDCM exhibits a highly variable natural history and standard clinical predictors have limited ability to classify IDCM patients into broad prognostic categories. These findings suggest that there are important host-environmental factors still unappreciated in the biology of IDCM.
 

March 2011
G. Rubin, Z. Herscovici, Y. Laviv, S. Jackson and Z.H. Rappaport

Background: Meningiomas are frequently detected incidentally. Their natural history has not yet been established because it is difficult to predict the growth pattern. Therefore, the management, after the radiological diagnosis, is still controversial.

Objectives: To evaluate the clinical outcome and growth rate of conservatively treated meningiomas at our tertiary center, identify prognostic factors of tumor growth, and suggest guidelines based on the available data and our experience.

Methods: We reviewed the clinical records of 56 patients with 63 untreated meningiomas. Most were diagnosed incidentally. Clinical features and imaging findings at diagnosis and during follow-up were compared between growing and non-growing tumors. Potential patient- and tumor-related predictive factors for growth were analyzed.

Results: The study group included 46 women (52 meningiomas) and 10 men (11 meningiomas) aged 39–83 years. Mean tumor size was 18 ± 11 mm (range 3–70 mm) at diagnosis and 22 ± 11 mm (range 8–70 mm) at last follow-up; mean follow-up time was 65 ± 34 months (range 15–152 months). During follow-up 24 tumors (38%) grew at a rate of 4 mm per year; none became symptomatic. Only two prognostic factors were statistically significantly associated with low growth rate: older age and tumor calcifications.

Conclusions: Given our finding of a low growth incidence of meningiomas in the elderly, we support conservative management in patients aged 70 years or older. Calcifications into the meningioma are also indicative of slow growth, suggesting a conservative strategy. Surgery is recommended in younger patients in whom tumor growth occurs more often and a longer follow-up is necessary.
 

January 2003
D. Rinkevich, J. Lessick, D. Mutlak, W. Markiewicz and S.A. Reisner

Background: With the introduction of surgery and percutaneous balloon valvuloplasty for relieving severe mitral stenosis the natural history of the disease has markedly altered.

Objectives: To determine the natural history of patients with moderate mitral valve stenosis.

Methods: Demographic, clinical and echocardiographic data were evaluated in 36 patients with moderate mitral stenosis during a follow-up of 71 ± 15 months.

Results: The 36 patients comprised 32 women and 4 men with a mean age of 43.7 ± 12.2 years; 28 were Jewish and 8 were of Arab origin. During follow-up, there was a significant decrease in mitral valve area, with an increase in mean mitral valve gradient and score. Mean loss of mitral valve area was 0.04 ± 0.11 cm2/year. No correlation was found between disease progression and age, past mitral valve commissurotomy, baseline mean gradient or mitral valve score. Larger baseline mitral valve area (P = 0.007) and Arab origin (P = 0.03) had an independent correlation to loss of mitral valve area. Fifteen patients (42%) did demonstrate any loss in mitral valve area during the follow-up period.

Conclusions: The rate of mitral valve narrowing in patients with moderate mitral stenosis is variable and cannot be predicted by patient’s age, past commissurotomy, valve score or gradient. Secondly, larger baseline mitral valve area and Arab origin showed an independent correlation to loss of mitral valve area; and finally, in many patients valve area did not change over a long observation period.
 

March 2002
Edward G. Abinader, MD FRCPI, Dawod Sharif, MD, Arie Shefer, MD and Johanan Naschitz, MD

Background: Long-term follow-up in apical hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is rare.

Objective: To study the natural history of the disease.

Methods: We followed 11 patients, 5 women and 6 men, for 5-20 years.

Results: At presentation all 11 patients had typical features of apical hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, with dyspnea in 3 and chest pains in 8, of whom 5 were typical of angina and 3 had myocardial infarction. R-wave voltage and T-wave negativity progressively decreased in magnitude at serial electrocardiograms in four patients. Perfusion defects were detected on thallium myocardial scintigraphy in three, increased apical uptake in two, and normal in one patient. Apical aneurysm with normal coronary arteries developed in a patient who had sustained ventricular tachycardia. All of the 10 catheterized patients had normal coronaries except for one with significant left anterior descending artery stenosis and another with a minor lesion. Symptomatic sustained ventricular tachycardia was found in two patients, one of whom required the implantation of an internal cardioverter-defibrillator.

Conclusions: Apical hypertrophic cardiomyopathy may develop morphologic and electrocardiographic changes with life-threatening arrhythmias necessitating close follow-up and treatment.

May 2001
David Kershenobich, MD, PhD and Cristian Heinrich Henonin, MD

The hepatitis C virus is an enveloped positive-sense single-stranded RNA virus, which has been classified into 6 major genotypes and over 100 subtypes. HCV replicates mainly in the hepatocyte. Recently, infectious HCV cDNA clones have been generated. Despite evidence that innate and adaptative humoral and cellular immune responses are activated as part of an antiviral defense, HCV has a remarkable ability to establish persistent infection. The analysis of viral kinetics using mathematical modeling shows a relative steady state without treatment, while an immediate biphasic HCV decline occurs in blood during successful treatment, the latter being predictive of clearance of HCV by the end of treatment.

February 2000
Rivka Kauli MD, Rina Zaizov MD, Liora Lazar MD, Athalia Pertzelan MD, Zvi Laron MD, Avinoam Galatzer MA, Moshe Phillip MD, Yitzhak Yaniv MD and Ian Joseph Cohen MB ChB

Background: Growth retardation in childhood was only recently recognized as a prominent feature of Gaucher disease type 1, but there are few data on both the pubertal development and the final outcome of growth and sexual maturation.

Objective: To investigate the natural pattern of growth and puberty in patients with Gaucher disease type 1 and the effect of splenectomy and enzyme replacement therapy.

Methods: We retrospectively analyzed growth and puberty in 57 patients with Gaucher disease type 1; 52 were followed since childhood and/or prepuberty and 42 have reached sexual maturity and final height. In the analysis we considered severity of disease, time of splenectomy, and start of enzyme replacement therapy.

Results: Deceleration of growth at age 3–5 years was observed in 30 of 57 patients followed since early childhood while untreated: height-SDS decreased from -0.34±0.42 at age 0–3 years to -1.93±0.95 (P<0.01) at age 7–10 years and was more pronounced with severe disease. A high prevalence (59.6%) of delayed puberty, which was more frequent with severe disease, was observed in 47 patients followed before and throughout puberty. No primary endocrine pathology was found. All patients, untreated as well as treated, with growth and pubertal delay had a spontaneous catch-up, achieved full sexual maturation, and most (83.3%) reached a final height within the range of parental height–standard deviation score. Splenectomy (partial and/or total) performed in 20 patients while still growing had a beneficial effect on growth, which was temporary in some and did not affect puberty. ERT improved growth in 11 patients who started therapy before puberty, as evidenced by a progressive increase in the height-SDS, and seemed to normalize the onset of puberty.

Conclusions: Growth retardation in childhood and delay of puberty are characteristic of Gaucher disease type 1 and are more frequent with severe disease. There is a spontaneous catch-up later in life and most patients reach a final height within their genetic growth potential. Enzyme replacement therapy apparently normalizes growth and possibly also the onset of puberty.

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ERT = enzyme replacement therapy

SDS = standard deviation score

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