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עמוד בית
Tue, 23.04.24

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June 2023
Chen Buxbaum MD, Mark Katson MD, Moshe Herskovitz MD

Background: The annual incidence of epilepsy increases with age, from nearly 28 per 100,000 by the age of 50 years to 139 per 100,000 by the age of 75 years. Late-onset epilepsy differs from epilepsy at a young age in the prevalence of structural-related epilepsy, types of seizures, duration of seizures, and presentation with status epilepticus.

Objectives: To check the response to treatment in patients with epilepsy with age of onset of 50 years and older.

Methods: We conducted a retrospective study. The cohort included all patients referred to the Rambam epilepsy clinic between 1 November 2016 and 31 January 2018 with epilepsy onset at age 50 years or older and at least one year of follow-up at the recruitment time point and epilepsy not caused by a rapidly progressive disease.

Results: At recruitment, most patients were being treated with a single antiseizure medication (ASM); 9 of 57 patients (15.7%) met the criteria for drug-resistant epilepsy (DRE). The mean duration of follow-up was 2.8 ± 1.3 years. In an intention-to-treat analysis, 7 of 57 patients (12.2%) had DRE at the last follow-up.

Conclusions: Late-onset epilepsy, which is defined as a first diagnosis in patients older than 50 years of age, is easy to control with monotherapy. The percentage of DRE in this group of patients is relatively low and stable over time.

December 2022
Michal Stein MD, Halima Dabaja-Younis MD, Imad Kassis MD, Khetam Hussein MD, Yael Shachor-Meyouhas MD

Background: Antibiotic resistance is a worldwide problem associated with increased morbidity and mortality.

Objectives: To evaluate multidrug resistant (MDR) bacteria carriage in selected populations.

Methods: Data were collected from all patients under 18 years who met our internal guidelines from 2015–2016. They were screened for carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE), extended spectrum beta-actamase (ESBL), methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), and vancomycin-resistant enterococci (VRE). Indications for screening were non-resident non-Israeli patients (from the Palestinian Authority, Syria, and foreign patients), internal transfers from intensive care units, admission to high-risk departments, recent carriage of MDR bacteria, transfer from other hospitals, and recent hospitalization. Data were analyzed for MDR bacteria from at least one screening site (rectal, nasal, axillary, groin, throat). All data were analyzed per patient and per sample.

Results: During the study period 185/2632 positive screening sets (7%) were obtained from 725 patients. Of these, 165 patients (22.7%) were positive for at least one pathogen. Significantly fewer Israeli residents (120/615, 19.5%) tested positive compared to non-Israeli residents (45/110, 40.9%; P < 0.001). Past MDR bacteria carriage was the only significant screening indication (25/61, 41%; P < 0.001). CRE, VRE, MRSA, and ESBL prevalence rates were 0.6% (5/771), 0.5% (3/560) 0.5%, 4.2% (37/888), and 33.7% (139/413), respectively. Among non-ESBL carriers, MRSA was predominant with 38 positive cultures (n=34).

Conclusions: Non-Israeli non-residents and patients with previous positive MDR screening are at higher risk for MDR bacteria. Indications used to identify high-risk patients for drug resistant pathogens were efficacious. More effort is needed to reduce excessive sampling.

October 2022
Walid Shalata MD, Motaz Abo Abod MD, Sergei Tsaregorodtsev MD, Reem Abu Hamid-Salama MD, Liora Boehm Cohen MD, Michael Kassirer MD, Dana Potashner MD, Yael Raviv MD
August 2022
Yulia Zinchenko MD PhD, Anna Malkova MD, and Anna Starshinova Prof
June 2022
Shai Ashkenazi MD

The development of antibiotic agents has revolutionized the treatment of infectious diseases and clinical practice. However, antibiotic overuse, together with biologic evolution, has resulted in escalating antibiotic resistance of bacteria; with the One Health concept, it affects our planet including animals, aquatic wildlife, rivers, groundwater, lakes, sea water, aqua farming, and soil. This situation threatens our ability to treat infections effectively in the near future and raises the alarming question of whether we are getting close to the post-antibiotic era. Several measures are suggested to prevent the apocalyptic consequence of antibiotic overuse, few of which are novel with thinking outside the box.

April 2022
Yonit Wiener-Well MD, Daniel Tordgman MD, Alon Bnaya MD, Orit Wolfovitz-Barchad MD, Marc V. Assous MD PhD, Amos M. Yinnon MD, and Eli Ben-Chetrit MD

Background: Carbapenem-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii (CRAB) is an important cause of nosocomial infections. Active surveillance for CRAB carriage to identify and isolate colonized patients is used to reduce transmission.

Objectives: To assess the rate and risks of clinical infection among CRAB-carrier and non-carrier patients.

Methods: Hospitalized patients from whom CRAB screening-cultures were obtained between January and June 2018 were identified retrospectively. All CRAB-carriers were compared to a convenient sample of non-carriers and were followed to detect development of CRAB clinical infection during admission.

Results: We compared 115 CRAB carriers to 166 non-carriers. The median age in the study group was 76 years (IQR 71–87) vs. 65 years (55–79) in the non-carriers group (P < 0.001). Residence in a nursing facility, debilitated state, and admission to medical wards vs. intensive care units were more frequent among CRAB-carriers (P < 0.001). Mechanically ventilated patients included 51 CRAB carriers (44%) and 102 non-carriers (61%). Clinical infection developed in 49 patients (17%), primarily CRAB pneumonia. Of the CRAB-carriers and non-carriers, 26/115 (23%) and 23/166 (14%), respectively, developed a clinical infection (P = 0.05). One-third of the ventilated patients were infected. Debilitated state and antibiotic treatment during hospitalization were linked to higher infection rates (P = 0.01). Adjusted analysis showed that mechanical ventilation and CRAB colonization were strongly associated with clinical infection (P < 0.05).

Conclusion: The rate of CRAB infection among carriers was high. Mechanical ventilation and CRAB colonization were associated with CRAB clinical infection, primarily pneumonia

October 2020
Haim Shmuely MD, Shimon Topaz MD, Rita Berdinstein PhD, Jacob Yahav MD, and Ehud Melzer MD

Background: Antimicrobial resistance is the main determinant for Helicobacter pylori treatment failure. Regional antimicrobial susceptibility testing is essential for appropriate antibiotic selection to achieve high eradication rates.

Objectives: To assess primary and secondary H. pylori resistance in isolates recovered from Israeli naïve and treatment failures. To identify predictors of resistance.

Methods: In this retrospective study, in vitro activity of isolated H. pylori in Israel was tested against metronidazole, clarithromycin, tetracycline, amoxicillin, and levofloxacin in 128 isolates: 106 from treatment failures and 22 from naïve untreated patients. The minimal inhibitory concentration values were determined according to the Etest instructions. Treatment failures previously failed at least one treatment regimen.

Results: No resistance to amoxicillin and tetracycline was detected. Resistance to metronidazole and clarithromycin was high in H. pylori isolates both from treated and untreated patients: 68.9%, 68.2% for metronidazole (P = 0.95); 53.8%, 59.1% for clarithromycin (P = 0.64), respectively. Dual resistance to clarithromycin and metronidazole was seen in 45.3% and 50%, respectively (P = 0.68). Resistance to levofloxacin was detected in two (1.9%) isolates from treated patients. Simultaneous resistance to clarithromycin, metronidazole, and levofloxacin was seen in an isolate from a treated patient. Age was the only predictor of resistance to metronidazole and clarithromycin.

Conclusion: The resistance rates to both single and dual metronidazole and clarithromycin in isolates recovered from both Israeli naïve and treated patients is high. Low resistance renders levofloxacin an attractive option for second or third line treatment. Therapeutic outcome would benefit from susceptibility testing after treatment failure.

April 2020
Ron Eremenko BSc, Shira Barmatz MSc, Nadia Lumelsky MD, Raul Colodner PhD, Merav Strauss PhD and Yoav Alkan MD

Background: Urinary tract infection (UTI) is a common bacterial infection in children.

Early treatment may prevent renal damage in pyelonephritis. The choice of empiric antibiotic treatment is based on knowledge of the local susceptibility of urinary bacteria to antibiotics. In Israel the recommended empiric oral antibiotic treatment are First or second generation cephalosporin, trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole or amoxicillin-clavulanic acid.

Objectives: To describe resistance rates of urine bacteria isolated from children with UTI in the community settings. Identify risk factors for resistance.

Methods: A retrospective cross-sectional study of UTI in children aged 3 months to 18 years diagnosed with UTI and treated as outpatients in a large community clinic between 7/2015 and 7/2017 with a diagnosis of UTI.

Results: A total of 989 urinary samples were isolated, 232 were included in the study. Resistance rates to cephalexin, cefuroxime, ampicillin/clavulanate and Trimethoprim-Sulfamethoxazole were 9.9%, 9.1%, 20.7%, and 16.5%, respectively. Urinary tract abnormalities and recurrent UTI were associated with an increase in antibiotic resistance rates. Other factors such as age, fever, and previous antibiotic treatment were not associated with resistance differences.

Conclusions: Resistance rates to common oral antibiotics were low compared to previous studies performed in Israel in hospital settings. First generation cephalosporins are the preferred empiric antibiotics for febrile UTI for outpatient children. Amoxicillin/clavulanate is not favorable due to resistance of over 20% and the broad spectrum of this antibiotic. Care should be taken in children with renal abnormalities as there is a worrying degree of resistance rates to the oral first line antibiotic therapy.

March 2019
Mariano Martini PhD, Naim Mahroum MD, Nicola Luigi Bragazzi MD PhD and Alessandra Parodi PhD
November 2018
Eliyahu Zaig MD, Odile Cohen-Ouaknine MD, Anat Tsur MD, Sheila Nagar MD, Gherta Bril MD, Lior Tolkin MD, Avivit Cahn MD, Mozhgan Heyman and Benjamin Glaser MD

Background: Reduced sensitivity to thyroid hormone (RSTH) syndrome describes a group of rare heterogeneous genetic disorders. Precise diagnosis is essential to avoid unnecessary treatment.

Objectives: To identify and characterize previously undiagnosed patients with RSTH in Israel.

Methods: Patients with suspected RSTH throughout Israel were referred for study. After clinical evaluation, genomic DNA was obtained and all coding exons of the thyroid hormone receptor beta (THRB) gene were sequenced. If mutations were found, all available blood relatives were evaluated. The common polymorphism rs2596623, a putative intronic regulatory variant, was also genotyped. Genotype/phenotype correlations were sought, and the effect of mutation status on pregnancy outcome was determined.

Results: Eight mutations (one novel; two de-novo, six dominant) were identified in eight probands and 13 family members. Clinical and genetic features were similar to those reported in other populations. Previous suggestions that rs2596623 predicts clinical features were not confirmed. There was no evidence of increased risk of miscarriage or fetal viability. Mothers carrying a THRB mutation tended to have increased gestational hypertension and low weight gain during pregnancy. Their affected offspring had increased risk of small-for-gestational age and poor postnatal weight gain.

Conclusions: Clinical heterogeneity due to THRB mutations cannot be explained by the variant rs2596623. Mothers and newborns with THRB mutations seem to be at increased risk of certain complications, such as gestational hypertension and poor intrauterine and postnatal growth. However, these issues are usually mild, suggesting that routine intervention to regulate thyroid hormone levels may not be warranted in these patients.

June 2018
Bat-Sheva Gottesman MD, Pnina Shitrit MD, Michal Katzir MD and Michal Chowers MD

Background: Increasing antibiotic resistance in the community results in greater use of empiric broad spectrum antibiotics for patients at hospital admission. As a measure of antibiotic stewardship it is important to identify a patient population that can receive narrow spectrum antibiotics.

Objectives: To evaluate resistance patterns of Escherichia coli bloodstream infection (BSI) from strictly community-acquired infection and the impact of recent antibiotic use on this resistance.

Methods: This single center, historical cohort study of adult patients with E. coli BSI was conducted from January 2007 to December 2011. Patients had no exposure to any healthcare facility and no chronic catheters or chronic ulcers. Data on antibiotic use during the previous 90 days was collected and relation to resistance patterns was assessed.

Results: Of the total number of patients, 267 BSI cases met the entry criteria; 153 patients (57%) had bacteria sensitive to all antibiotics. Among 189 patients with no antibiotic exposure, 61% of isolates (116) were pan-sensitive. Resistance to any antibiotic appeared in 114 patients and 12 were extended-spectrum beta-lactamase (ESBL) producers. Quinolone use was the main driver of resistance to any antibiotic and to ESBL resistance patterns. In a multivariate analysis, older age (odds ratio 1.1) and quinolone use (odds ratio 7) were independently correlated to ESBL.

Conclusions: At admission, stratification by patient characteristics and recent antibiotic use can help personalize primary empirical therapy.

May 2018
Viktoria Leikin-Zach MD, Eilon Shany MD, Maayan Yitshak-Sade PhD, Ron Eshel B Med Sc, Tali Shafat MD, Avraham Borer MD and Rimma Melamed MD

Background: Extended-spectrum beta-lactamase (ESBL) production is the most common antimicrobial resistance mechanism in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), with colonization and blood stream infections being a major threat to this population. Since 2013, all NICU admissions at our facility were screened twice weekly for ESBL colonization.

Objectives: To determine independent risk factors for colonization of infants with ESBL-producing bacteria in the NICU.

Methods: A retrospective case study of ESBL-colonized infants vs. controls (matched by date of birth and gestational age) was conducted in the NICU of Soroka University Medical Center, Israel, between 2013 and 2014. Epidemiological, laboratory, and clinical data were extracted from medical files. Univariable and multivariable analyses were used to assess associations between ESBL colonization and possible clinical risk factors.

Results: Of 639 admissions during the study period, 87 were found to be ESBL-colonized (case infants) and were matched to 87 controls. Five case infants became infected (5.7%) with ESBL strains. Klebsiella pneumoniae was the most common isolated bacteria. The mean time from admission to colonization was 15 days. Univariable analysis showed an association of male gender and highest Apgar score at 1 and 5 minutes with ESBL colonization (P < 0.05). Multivariable analysis yielded only a possible association of higher Apgar score at 1 and 5 minutes (hazard ratio [HR] 1.515, 95% confidence interval [95%CI] 0.993-2.314; HR 1.603, 95%CI 0.958–2.682, respectively) with ESBL colonization.

Conclusions: Future studies should focus on maternal colonization and possible strategies for preventing vertical transmission of ESBL strains to high-risk neonates.

December 2017
Michal Kori MD, Jacob Yahav MD, Rita Berdinstein MD and Haim Shmuely, MD

Background: Empiric treatment for Helicobacter pylori is influenced by antibiotic susceptibility of infecting strains. A rise in the resistance rate to clarithromycin and metronidazole has been reported in pediatric populations.

Objectives: To assess the primary and secondary antibiotic resistance of H. pylori isolates in Israeli children and adolescents.

Methods: A retrospective review of H. pylori isolates cultured from antral biopsies of consecutive children aged 1 to 18 years, who were referred to the Pediatric Gastroenterology Unit, Kaplan Medical Center, over a 2.8 year period, was performed. Antibiotic susceptibility to clarithromycin, metronidazole, amoxicillin, tetracycline, and levofloxacin was determined by E-test. Data on the age of the patient, indication for endoscopy, and antibiotic treatment for H. pylori in previously treated children was collected.

Results: Cultures for H. pylori yielded 123 isolates. In children not previously treated (n=95), the primary global resistance was 38% with resistance to clarithromycin 9.5%, metronidazole 32.6 %, and to both 4.2%. Respective rates of resistance in previously treated children (n=28) were 71% (P = 0.002), 29% (P = 0.02), and 61% (P = 0.007). Simultaneous resistance to both drugs was found in 18% (P = 0.02). All H. pylori strains were susceptible to amoxicillin, tetracycline, and levofloxacin. Past eradication treatment was the only independent risk factor for antibiotic resistance in multivariate analysis.

Conclusions: Significantly higher resistance rates were found in previously treated patients, stressing the need to refrain from empiric treatment using the "test and treat strategy." Culture-based treatment strategy should be considered in all previously treated children.

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