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עמוד בית
Sun, 14.07.24

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November 2012
August 2012
A. Ballin, Y. Senecky, U. Rubinstein, E. Schaefer, R. Peri, S. Amsel, M. Vol, Y. Amit and M. Boaz

Background: The pathogenesis of anemia associated with acute infection in children has not been well delineated.

Objectives: To characterize this type of anemia in children with acute infection, mainly in relation to iron status.

Methods: These two cross-sectional studies compared the prevalence and severity of anemia between outpatient febrile children and age-matched non-febrile controls.

Results: In part 1 of the study, children with acute infection (n=58) had a significant decrease in hemoglobin levels compared with 54 non-febrile controls. Mean corpuscular volume (MCV) did not change this association. Moreover, there was no significant difference in MCV, mean cell hemoglobin or red cell distribution width values between the two groups. Regarding part 2, of the 6534 blood counts obtained in community clinics, 229 were defined as “bacterial infection.” Chart survey confirmed this diagnosis. White blood cell level was significantly inversely associated with hemoglobin level (r = -0.36, P < 0.0001). Anemia was significantly more prevalent among children with bacterial infection compared to those without: 21.4% vs. 14.1% (P = 0.002). Mean values of iron status parameters were all within normal limits.

Conclusions: Acute illness is associated with anemia. The pathogenesis of this anemia does not appear to be associated with disruption of iron metabolism.

July 2011
N. Sharon, R. Talnir, O. Lavid, U. Rubinstein, M. Niven, Y. First, A.J.I. Tsivion and Y. Schachter
Background: Pandemic influenza A2/H1N1 carries a relatively high morbidity, particularly in young people. Early identification would enable prompt initiation of therapy, thereby improving outcomes.
Objective: To describe the epidemiological, clinical and laboratory characteristics of children admitted to hospital with the clinical diagnosis of influenza with reference to pandemic influenza A/H1N1.
Methods: We conducted a prospective study of all children aged 16 years or less admitted to the pediatric department with the clinical diagnosis of influenza-like illness from July to October 2009. The presence of A/H1N1 virus was confirmed using real-time reverse transcriptase polymerase chain (RT-PCR) analysis of nasopharyngeal secretions. Positive cases were compared with negative cases concerning epidemiological data, risk factors, clinical presentation and laboratory parameters, with emphasis on changes in the differential blood count.
Results: Of the 106 study patients, 53 were positive to influenza A/H1N1 and 53 were negative. In both groups nearly all patients had fever at presentation and approximately two-thirds had both fever and cough. All patients had a mild clinical course, no patient needed to be admitted to the intensive care unit and no mortalities were recorded. Hyperactive airway disease was more common in the A/H1N1-positive group. Pneumonia occurred in 30% of children in both groups. Laboratory findings included early lymphopenia and later neutropenia in the A/H1N1-infected patients.
Conclusions: Leukopenia consisting of lymphopenia and later neutropenia was common in patients with A/H1N1 infection but was not correlated with disease severity or clinical course, which were similar in both groups. However, reduced leukocyte count can be used as an additional criterion for diagnosing A/H1N1 infection until RT-PCR results are available.
K. Machol, A. Vivante, M. Rubinsthein, B. Dekel, Joseph Danieli and G. Paret
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.
 

February 2011
G. Rubin, S. Krasnyansky, I. Gavish, I. Elmalah, O. Ben-Lulu and N. Rozen

Background: Routine histopathological analysis of bone extracted during total joint replacement is controversial.

Objectives: To evaluate the utility of routine histopathological analysis in total joint replacement.

Methods: We calculated the risk for discrepant diagnosis between the pre- and postoperative histopathological results by performing a meta-analysis of 11 studies (including our data). We also calculated the risk for significant discrepancies.

Results: The discrepant diagnoses analysis showed a random effect of 3% discrepancies (95% confidence interval 1.2–3.7%). Funnel plot indicates a publication bias; consequently, the conclusions from this analysis should be interpreted with caution. Regarding the significant discrepancy in diagnosis, we performed a meta-analysis of nine studies. Fixed-effects analysis of all the studies resulted in 0.16% significant discrepancies (95% CI[1] 0.02–0.30%) with no heterogeneity (Q = 3.93, degrees of freedom = 9, P = 0.14, I2 = 49.2%), and appropriate fixed-effects models.

Conclusions: We recommend no further routine histological examination, reserving this tool for cases with a controversial primary diagnosis and unexpected findings during the operation.






[1] CI = confidence interval


November 2010
L. Rubin, S. Nir-Inbar and S. Rishpon

Background: The rate and duration of breastfeeding in Ethiopia is very high. Factors that could affect breastfeeding among women emigrating to Israel include the desire to adopt "modern" behaviors, the availability of infant formulas, and the greater awareness of AIDS and fear of transmission via breast milk.

Objectives: To examine the rate and duration of breastfeeding among recent Ethiopian immigrants to Israel.

Methods Using a structured questionnaire we interviewed 93 Ethiopian born mothers of children aged 2 months to 5 years living in northern Israel.

Results: Ninety-two percent of the children born in Ethiopia were exclusively breastfed as compared to 76.3% of the Israeli born children, in whom the rate of mixed feeding was 18.3%. Although the duration of breastfeeding of the youngest child was significantly shorter than of the firstborn (20.1 vs. 24.8 months), it remains much longer than the average duration for native Israeli mothers. No association was seen between breastfeeding rate or duration and the years since immigration, work outside the home or exposure to formula. The women’s attitude towards breastfeeding was positive despite the lack of specific knowledge concerning breast milk and infant formulas.

Conclusions: Breastfeeding patterns among Ethiopian women have changed since their immigration to Israel. These changes probably reflect the cultural and societal pressures to acculturate to the mores of the adopted society. Reinforcing traditional family and peer support for these women is important to preserve breastfeeding in this population. This should be done within the context of changes in the support for breastfeeding in the general Israeli society.

September 2010
J. Zlotogora, Z. Haklai, N. Rotem, M. Georgi and L. Rubin

Background: Ultrasound examination of the fetus enables diagnosis of many major malformations during pregnancy, providing the possibility to consider interruption of the pregnancy. As a result, in many cases the incidence of malformations at birth does not represent their true incidence.

Objectives: To determine the impact of prenatal diagnosis and termination of pregnancy on the relative incidence of malformations at birth among Jews and Muslim Arabs in Israel.

Methods: Data on selected major malformations in 2000–2003 were collected from the two large central databases of the Ministry of Health and the Central Bureau of Statistics which contain information regarding births, stillbirths and terminations of pregnancies.

Results: For many malformations the total incidence was much higher than the incidence at birth. For almost all of the malformations studied, the total incidence was higher in Muslims than in Jews and the differences were further accentuated among the liveborn because of the differences in the rate of pregnancy terminations.

Conclusions: In order to detect possible influences of environmental or genetic factors on major malformations in Israel, it is critical to look at data including pregnancy terminations, stillbirths and live births.

July 2010
M. Haddad, G. Rubin, M. Soudry and N. Rozen

Background: There is controversy as to which is the preferred treatment for distal radius intra-articular fractures – anatomic reduction or external fixation.

Objectives: To evaluate the radiologic and functional outcome following external fixation of these fractures.

Methods: Between January 2003 and March 2005, 43 patients with distal radius intra-articular fractures were treated using a mini-external AO device. Follow-up of 38 of the patients included X-rays at 1 week, 6 weeks and 6 months postoperatively. The Visual Analogue Scale was used to assess pain levels, and the Lidstrom criteria scale to evaluate functional outcome and wrist motion. Clinical and radiographic results were correlated.

Results: According to the Lidstrom criteria, the results were excellent in 31%, good in 61% and fair in 5.5%; 2.5% had a poor outcome. The results of the VAS[1] were good. Thirty-five patients gained a good range of wrist movement, but 3 had a markedly reduced range. We found statistical correlation between the radiographic and clinical results, emphasizing the value of good reduction. There was no correlation between fracture type (Frykman score) and radiologic results or clinical results.

Conclusions: External fixation seems to be the preferred method of treatment for distal radius intra-articular fractures, assuming that good reduction can be achieved. The procedure is also quick, the risk of infection is small, and there is little damage to the surrounding tissues.

 






[1] VAS = Visual Analogue Scale


May 2010
O. Hochwald, E.S. Bamberger, L. Rubin, R. Gershtein and I. Srugo

Background: An outbreak of pertussis occurred in a daycare center with 87.5% vaccination coverage.

Objectives: To assess the effectiveness of the acellular pertussis vaccine and prevention of pertussis after chemoprophylaxis with azithromycin.

Methods: We studied 31 daycare children aged 3–5.5 years exposed to a child with pertussis. Nasopharyngeal swabs were obtained for Bordetella pertussis culture and polymerase chain reaction initially, and at days 21 and 60 of follow-up, in cases exhibiting symptoms.

Results: Of the 31 daycare children 6 (19%) tested positive for B. pertussis by PCR[1], 4 of whom had not been vaccinated against the disease. Of the two vaccinated children who contracted pertussis, one had milder symptoms and the other was asymptomatic. The incidence of pertussis was significantly lower in the vaccinated group (2/27) than in the unvaccinated group (4/4) (P = 0.000), with efficacy of the vaccine calculated to be 92.5%. Azithromycin chemoprophylaxis was taken only by 14 of the 25 exposed children (56%). On day 21 follow-up, there was no further laboratory-diagnosed B. pertussis cases in any of the exposed children, regardless of whether or not chemoprophylaxis was taken.

Conclusions: Based on the children’s clinical manifestations and PCR findings a pertussis outbreak had occurred in the daycare center studied. Our findings support the importance of pertussis vaccination since all the unvaccinated children in the daycare center contracted the infection.

 



[1] PCR = polymerase chain reaction
 
 
April 2010
I. Besser, Z.H. Perry, O. Mesner, E. Zmora and A. Toker

Background: Hyperbilirubinemia of the newborn is common. Rarely is an underlying disease other than physiologic hyperbilirubinemia considered the cause of high bilirubin levels. Some of the laboratory tests recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics are expensive and do not always lead to diagnosis.

Objective: To evaluate the efficacy of standard laboratory tests performed on newborn infants requiring phototherapy for hyperbilirubinaemia.

Methods: We conducted a retrospective chart review that included neonates born during a 6 month period with birth weight > 2500 g treated with phototherapy for hyperbilirubinemia (n=282) according to published guidelines. The main outcome measures were primary and maximal bilirubin values (mg/dl), time to jaundice (in days), the number of bilirubin tests undertaken and whether the patient showed abnormal functioning, and the number of days in follow-up.

Results: Thirty-three neonates (11.7%) were positive in at least one laboratory test (defined as "Abnormal" in our study), 45.5% of whom met the criteria for phototherapy during the first 48 hours of life. Among the newborns who were negative for all laboratory tests (defined as "Normal"), only 6.8% met phototherapy criteria within their first 48 hours of life (P < 0.001). In the Normal group there was a consistent decrease in total serum bilirubin values shortly after phototherapy was begun, while the Abnormal group presented an increase in serum bilirubin values during the first 12 hours of phototherapy. None of the infants had conjugated (direct) hyperbilirubinemia during the study period.

Conclusions: Most neonates presenting with a laboratory identifiable etiology for hyperbilirubinemia (i.e., hemolysis) can be distinguished from those who test negative, mainly based on the timing of presentation and response to phototherapy. A more meticulous selection of patients and reduction in the magnitude of routine laboratory testing can safely reduce discomfort to infants with hyperbilirubinemia as well as costs.

December 2008
Y. Michowitz, S. Kisil, H. Guzner-Gur, A. Rubinstein, D. Wexler, D. Sheps, G. Keren, J. George

Background: Myeloperoxidase levels were shown to reflect endothelial dysfunction, inflammation, atherosclerosis and oxidative stress.

Objectives: To examine the role of circulating myeloperoxidase, a leukocyte-derived enzyme, as a predictor of mortality in patients with congestive heart failure.

Methods: Baseline serum MPO[1] levels were measured in 285 consecutive CHF[2] patients and 35 healthy volunteers. N-terminal pro-brain natriuretic peptide and high sensitivity C-reactive protein concentrations were also measured. The primary outcome endpoint was overall mortality.

Results: MPO levels were significantly elevated in patients with CHF compared to healthy volunteers (P = 0.01). During a mean follow-up of 40.9 ± 11.3 months there were 106 deaths. On a univariate Cox regression analysis MPO levels were of marginal value (P = 0.07) whereas NT-proBNP[3] was of considerable value (P < 0.0001) in predicting all-cause mortality. By dividing our cohort according to NT-proBNP levels into high, intermediate and low risk groups a clear difference in mortality was shown. By further dividing the patient cohort according to MPO levels above or below the median (122.5 ng/ml), mortality prediction improved in the patients with intermediate NT-proBNP values.


Conclusions: MPO levels are elevated in CHF and correlate with disease severity. MPO has an additive predictive value on mortality in patients with intermediate NT-proBNP levels.

 


 


[1] MPO = myeloperoxidase

[2] CHF = congestive heart failure

[3] NT-proBNP = N-terminal pro-brain natriuretic peptide

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