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עמוד בית
Sun, 21.07.24

Search results

June 2013
O. Ben-Ishay, E. Brauner, Z. Peled, A. Othman, B. Person and Y. Kluger
 Background: Colon cancer is common, affecting mostly older people. Since age is a risk factor, young patients might not be awarded the same attention as older ones regarding symptoms that could imply the presence of colon cancer.

Objectives: To investigate whether young patients, i.e., under age 50, complain of symptoms for longer than older patients until the diagnosis of colon cancer is established.

Methods: In this retrospective cohort study, patients were divided into two groups: < 50 years old (group 1) and ≥ 50 (group 2). All had undergone surgery for left or right colon cancer during the 1 year period January 2000 through December 2009 at one medical center. Rectal and sigmoid cancers were excluded. Data collected included age, gender, quantity and quality of complaints, duration of complaints, in-hospital versus community diagnosis, pathological staging, the side of colon involved, and overall mortality. The main aim was the quality and duration of complaints. Secondary outcomes were the pathological stage at presentation and the mortality rate.

Results: The study group comprised 236 patients: 31 (13.1%) were < 50 years old and 205 (86.9%) were ≥ 50 years. No significant difference was found in the quantity and quality of complaints between the two groups. Patients in group 1 (< 50 years) complained for a longer period, 5.3 vs. 2.4 months (P = 0.002). More younger patients were diagnosed with stage IV disease (38.7% vs. 21.5%, P = 0.035) and fewer had stage I disease (3.2% vs. 15.6%, P = 0.06); the mortality rates were similar (41.9% vs. 39%). Applying a stepwise logistic regression model, the duration of complaints was found to be an independent predictor of mortality (P = 0.03, OR 1.6, 95% CI 1–3.6), independently of age (P = 0.003) and stage (P < 0.001).

Conclusions: Younger patients are more often diagnosed with colon cancer later, at a more advanced stage. Alertness to patients’ complaints, together with evaluation regardless of age but according to symptoms and clinical presentation are crucial. Large-scale population-based studies are needed to confirm this trend. 

September 2012
R. Sukenik-Halevy, U. leil-Zoabi, L, Peled-Perez, J. Zlotogora, and S. Allon-Shalev

Background: Genetic screening tests for cystic fibrosis (CF), fragile X (FRAX) and spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) have been offered to the entire Arab population of Israel in the last few years. Since 2008, screening for CF is provided free of charge, but for FRAX and SMA the screening is privately funded with partial coverage by complementary health insurance programs.

Objectives: To assess the compliance of Arab couples for genetic screening tests, and the factors that affect their decisions.

Methods: We analyzed compliance for genetic screening tests at the Emek Medical Center Genetic Institute, and in outreach clinics in four Arab villages. We enquired about the reasons individuals gave for deciding not to undergo testing. We also assessed the compliance of these individuals for the triple test (a screening test for Down syndrome).

Results: Of the 167 individuals included in our study, 24 (14%) decided not to be tested at all. Of the 143 (86%) who decided to be tested, 109 were tested for CF only (65%) and 34 (20%) for SMA and FRAX (as well as CF). The compliance rate for the triple test was 87%. Technical reasons, mainly financial issues, were the most significant factor for not undergoing all three tests.

Conclusions: The compliance of the Arab community for genetic testing for SMA and FRAX is extremely low. We believe that this low utilization of screening is due to economic reasons, especially when a complementary health plan has not been acquired, and largely reflects the perception that these tests are less important since they are privately funded.

July 2011
O. Tzischinsky, S. Shahrabani and R. Peled

Background: Obstructive sleep apnea syndrome (OSAS) is a sleep-related breathing disorder characterized by excessive daytime sleepiness, accidents and high medical expenses. The first line of treatment for OSAS is continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP).

Objectives: To examine attitudes and beliefs as well as physiological and sociodemographic factors affecting OSA patients' decision whether or not to purchase a CPAP device.

Methods: The study was divided into two stages; in the first, 83 subjects completed self-administered questionnaires prior to sleep examination (polysomnographic study). The questionnaires related to sleep habits, sleep disorders, questions organized around health belief model (HBM) concepts, sociodemographic information, health status and PSG[1] examination. In the second stage, 3 months later, 50 OSAS patients were interviewed by telephone, which included questions about their reasons for purchasing/not purchasing the CPAP device.

Results: Only 48% of the OSAS patients purchased the CPAP device. The significant factors positively affecting the decision included higher levels of physiological factors such as body mass index (coefficient 0.36, P < 0.05) and respiratory disturbance index (coefficient 0.16, P < 0.05), higher income levels (coefficient 3.26, p < 0.05), and higher levels of knowledge about OSAS (coefficient -2.98, P < 0.1).

Conclusions: Individuals who are more aware of their own health condition, are better informed about OSAS and have higher incomes are more likely to purchase the device. We suggest reducing the level of co-payment and providing patients with more information about the severe effects of OSAS.

[1] PSG = polysomnography

December 2007
T. Shochat, O. Tzchishinsky, A. Oksenberg and R. Peled

Background: The Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index is a standardized self-administered questionnaire for the assessment of subjective sleep quality. It has been translated into several languages and is widely used in clinical research studies.

Objectives: To assess the reliability and validity of the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index Hebrew translation in a sleep clinic sample and in comparison with the Technion Mini Sleep Questionnaire.

Methods: The PSQI[1] was translated into Hebrew based on standard guidelines. The final Hebrew version (PSQI-H) was administered to 450 patients from two sleep clinics and to 61 healthy adults from the community as a non-clinical control sample. The MSQ[2] was administered to 130 patients in one sleep clinic.

Results: For the PSQI-H[3], Cronbach's-alpha scores for sleep clinic and non-clinical samples were 0.70 and 0.52 respectively and 0.72 combined. Clinical sample scores were significantly higher than the non-clinical group, indicating lower sleep quality for the former. Significant correlations were found between the MSQ subscores and PSQI-H component scores for common underlying constructs.

Conclusions: The PSQI-H differentiated between clinical and non-clinical samples and showed adequate reliability and good validity. It may be used as a standardized tool for the assessment of subjective sleep quality in clinical research studies conducted in the Hebrew-speaking population.

[1] PSQI = Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index

[2] MSQ = Mini Sleep Questionnaire

[3] PSQI-H = Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index Hebrew

September 2007
E. Israeli, B. Talis, N. Peled, R. Snier and J. El-On

Background: Serology of amebiasis is affected by low sensitivity and specificity.

Objectives: To evaluate the advantage of the indirect hemagglutination assay and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay in the diagnosis of amebiasis, using Entamoeba histolytica soluble antigen (macerated amebic antigens) prepared from four different virulent isolates, continuously cultivated in the presence of the original enteric bacteria.

Methods: Using IHA[1] and ELISA[2] with MAA[3] antigen we examined 147 sera samples from patients with gastrointestinal symptoms, and 11 sera from amebiasis cases (confirmed by microscopy and copro-antigen ELISA ).

Results: Of 104 of the 147 (70.7%) symptomatic cases that were amebiasis positive by IHA, 81 (55.1%) were positive by MAA-ELISA. In addition, of 11 amebiasis cases confirmed by microscopy and copro-antigen ELISA , 7 (64%) were amebiasis positive by both tests. Four species of bacteria were isolated from the ameba cultures: Escherichia coli, Morganella morganii, Proteus mirabilis, and Streptococcus lactis. Elimination of the bacteria from the cultures by an antibiotics cocktail containing gentamicin, imipenem, piperacillin-tazobactam and vancomycin was the preferred method. Absorption of patients' sera to bacterial antigen prior to serological analysis had only a marginal effect.

Conclusions: These results indicate a correlation of 61% between the ELISA developed in this study and the IHA tests in the diagnosis of amebiasis.

[1] IHA = indirect hemagglutination assay

[2] ELISA = enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay

[3] MAA = macerated amoebic antigens

January 2007
Z. Kaufman, W-K. Wong, T. Peled-Leviatan, E. Cohen, C. Lavy, G. Aharonowitz, R. Dichtiar, M. Bromberg, O. Havkin, E. Kokia and M.S. Green

Background: Syndromic surveillance systems have been developed for early detection of bioterrorist attacks, but few validation studies exist for these systems and their efficacy has been questioned.

Objectives: To assess the capabilities of a syndromic surveillance system based on community clinics in conjunction with the WSARE[1] algorithm in identifying early signals of a localized unusual influenza outbreak.

Methods: This retrospective study used data on a documented influenza B outbreak in an elementary school in central Israel. The WSARE algorithm for anomalous pattern detection was applied to individual records of daily patient visits to clinics of one of the four health management organizations in the country.

Results: Two successive significant anomalies were detected in the HMO’s[2] data set that could signal the influenza outbreak. If data were available for analysis in real time, the first anomaly could be detected on day 3 of the outbreak, 1 day after the school principal reported the outbreak to the public health authorities.

Conclusions: Early detection is difficult in this type of fast-developing institutionalized outbreak. However, the information derived from WSARE could help define the outbreak in terms of time, place and the population at risk.

[1] WSARE = What’s Strange About Recent Events

[2] HMO = health management organization

July 2005
T. Gaspar, D. Dvir and N. Peled
 Background: Computed tomography angiography enables non-invasive evaluation of the coronary arteries.

Objectives: To evaluate the accuracy of 16-slice multi-detector CT angiography in the diagnosis of coronary artery disease, and assess coronary bypass grafts and coronary anomalies.

Methods: We conducted a retrospective study of 223 patients who were examined at our medical center over a period of 2 years with a 16-slice CT angiography scanner and retrospective electrocardiographic gating.

Results: There were no significant complications, and good visualization of the coronary arteries was achieved in all but eight patients. A high correlation with the results of the invasive angiography was noted (sensitivity 85%, specificity 93%, negative predictive value 98%). Altogether, 131 bypass conduits were examined with excellent graft visualization. Several coronary anomalies were detected, as were significant extra-cardiac findings.

Conclusions: Multi-slice CT angiography is a reliable non-invasive diagnostic procedure for demonstration of the coronary arteries and bypass grafts. In the future it will probably replace part of the diagnostic invasive coronary angiography and, as a result, a large proportion of coronary angiography procedures will be therapeutic.

September 2004
D. Greenberg, P. Yagupsky, N. Peled, A. Goldbart, N. Porat and A. Tal

Background: Transmission of Pseudomonas aeruginosa among cystic fibrosis patients attending health camps has been reported previously.

Objectives: To determine the transmission of P. aeruginosa among CF[1] patients during three winter camps in the Dead Sea region in southern Israel.

Methods: Three consecutive CF patient groups were studied, each of which spent 3 weeks at the camp. The patients were segragated prior to camp attendance: patients who were not colonized with P. aeruginosa constituted the first group and colonized patients made up the two additional groups. Sputum cultures were obtained upon arrival, at mid-camp and on the last day. Environmental cultures were also obtained. Patients were separated during social activities and were requested to avoid social mingling. Isolates were analyzed by antibiotics susceptibility profile and by pulsed field gel electrophoresis.

Results: Ninety isolates from 19 patients produced 28 different fingerprint patterns by PFGE[2]. Isolates from two siblings and two patients from the same clinic displayed the same fingerprint pattern. These patients were already colonized with these organisms upon arrival. Two couples were formed during the camp, but PFGE showed no transmission of organisms. All other patients' isolates displayed unique fingerprint patterns and were distinguishable from those of other attendees, and none of the P. aeruginosa-negative patients acquired P. aeruginosa during camp attendance. Environmental cultures were negative for P. aeruginosa.

Conclusions: We were unable to demonstrate cross-infection of P. aeruginosa among CF patients participating in health camps at the Dead Sea who were meticulously segregated.

[1] CF = cystic fibrosis

[2] PFGE = pulsed field gel electrophoresis

March 2004
Y. Fruchtman, D. Greenberg, E. Shany, R. Melamed, N. Peled and M. Lifshitz
September 2003
D. Marchaim, M. Hallak, L. Gortzak-Uzan, N. Peled, K. Riesenberg and F. Schlaeffer

Background: In southern Israel, a discrepancy between a relatively high prevalence of Group B streptococcus maternal carriage (12.3%) and a very low incidence of neonatal disease (0.1/1,000 live births) has been found despite the fact that no preventive strategy has been implemented.

Objectives: To determine the risk factors for maternal carriage in order to clarify this discrepancy and further examine the different aspects of GBS[1] in southern Israel.

Methods: Cultures for GBS were obtained from 681 healthy pregnant women and relevant demographic and obstetric data were collected. The medical records of 86 neonates born to carrier women were retrospectively examined. Statistical analysis was performed using the Pearson chi-square test.

Results: Women who were not born in Israel, particularly immigrants from the former USSR, were significantly prone to carry the pathogen compared to native Israeli women (Bedouin Arabs and Jews) (P = 0.03).

Conclusions: A high GBS transmission rate is expected among immigrants who came from areas with a high prevalence of maternal carriage to one with a low incidence of neonatal disease environment and were not subject to any preventive strategy. Clinical attention should be directed to this issue throughout Israel.

[1] GBS = Group B Streptococcus

April 2002
Rosalia Smolyakov, MD, Klaris Riesenberg, MD, Francisc Schlaeffer, MD, Abraham Borer, MD, Jacob Gilad, MD, Nechama Peled, MSc and Michael Alkan, MD
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.

February 2000
Jacob Bar MD, Raoul Orvieto MD, Yosef Shalev MD, Yoav Peled MD, Yosef Pardo MD, Uzi Gafter MD, Zion Ben-Rafael MD, Ronny Chen MD and Moshe Hod MD

Background: The preconception and intraconception parameters that are relevant to outcome in women with underlying renal disease remain controversial.  

Objectives: To analyze the types and frequencies of short- and long-term (2 years after delivery) maternal and neonatal complications in 38 patients with primary renal disease (46 pregnancies), most of them with mild renal insufficiency.  

Methods: Logistic regression models were formulated to predict successful outcome.  

Results: Successful pregnancy outcome (live, healthy infant without severe handicap 2 years after delivery) was observed in 98% of the patients with primary renal disease. Factors found to be significantly predictive of successful outcome were absence of pre-existing hypertension, in addition to low preconception serum uric acid level.

Conclusions: Most women with primary renal disease who receive proper prenatal care have a successful pregnancy outcome. Worse pregnancy outcome was observed in women with moderate or severe renal failure. Fitted logistic models may provide useful guidelines for counseling women with preexisting renal disease about their prospects for a successful pregnancy in terms of immediate and long-term maternal and neonatal outcome.

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