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עמוד בית
Tue, 21.05.24

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March 2017
Efraim Aizen MD, Bela Shifrin MD, Inna Shugaev MD and Israel Potasman MD

Background: The optimal approach to the evaluation of asymptomatic bacteruria in stroke patients is uncertain. 

Objectives: To compare elderly patients after an acute stroke with and without asymptomatic bacteriuria for the development of symptomatic urinary tract infections (UTI).

Methods: We prospectively monitored patients over 65 years of age admitted to our rehabilitation hospital after an acute stroke, with and without asymptomatic bacteriuria, for the development of symptomatic UTIs. The prevalence of bacteriuria was determined by urine cultures obtained 2 and 4 weeks after admission. Patients with and without persistent bacteriuria were compared to identify variables associated with bacteriuria.

Results: Fifty-five patients were included in the study. The prevalence of asymptomatic bacteriuria at baseline was 20%. Of all 55 stroke patients, 13 (23.6%) developed a symptomatic UTI during the 30 day follow-up. Patients with stroke and asymptomatic bacteriuria at baseline had an increased risk of developing a symptomatic UTI (54.5% with asymptomatic bacteriuria vs. 15.9% without, P = 0.011). To exclude the effects of several confounders, we performed multivariate Cox regression analysis, which showed that bacteruria remained a significant covariate for symptomatic UTI (hazard ratio 2.86, 95% confidence interval 0.71–10.46, P = 0.051). When subjects who experienced symptomatic urinary infection were included, the prevalence of bacteriuria in the study cohort declined to about 45.5% by 30 days. 

Conclusion: Elderly patients with stroke and asymptomatic bacteriuria have an increased risk of developing a symptomatic UTI compared to those without asymptomatic bacteriuria during a 30 day post-stroke follow-up.

 

December 2016
Yuval Konstantino MD, Dana Zelnik Yovel BSc, Michael D. Friger PhD, Gideon Sahar MD, Boris Knyazer MD and Guy Amit MD MPH

Background: Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a common complication of coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery, occurring in 20%–40% of patients, mostly during the first week after surgery. It is associated with increased morbidity and mortality, but data are limited. 

Objectives: To assess the correlation between new-onset in-hospital AF following CABG and long-term AF, cerebrovascular accident (CVA), or death.

Methods: We conducted an analysis of 161 consecutive patients who underwent isolated CABG surgery in a tertiary center during the period 2002–2003. 

Results: Patients’ mean age was 72 years, and the majority were males (77%). Approximately half of the patients experienced prior myocardial infarction, and 14% had left ventricular ejection fraction < 40%. Postoperative AF (POAF) occurred in 27% of the patients. Patients were older and had larger left atrium diameter. POAF was strongly correlated with late AF (OR 4.34, 95%CI 1.44–13.1, P = 0.01) during a mean follow-up of 8.5 years. It was also correlated with long-term stroke but was not associated with long-term mortality. 

Conclusions: POAF is a common complication of CABG surgery, which is correlated with late AF and stroke. Patients with POAF should be closely monitored to facilitate early administration of anticoagulant therapy in a high risk population upon recurrence of AF. 

 

September 2016
Rotem Sivan-Hoffmann MD, Benjamin Gory MD MSc, Muriel Rabilloud MD PhD, Dorin N. Gherasim MD, Xavier Armoiry PharmD PhD, Roberto Riva MD, Paul-Emile Labeyrie MD MSc, Udi Gonike-Sadeh MD, Islam Eldesouky MD and Francis Turjman MD PhD

Mechanical thrombectomy with stent retrievers is now the reference therapy for acute ischemic stroke (AIS) in the anterior circulation in association with thrombolysis. We conducted an extensive systematic review and meta-analysis to evaluate the clinical and angiographic outcomes of stent-retriever thrombectomy in patients with acute anterior circulation stroke. Available literature published to date on observational studies and three randomized trials (MR CLEAN, ESCAPE, and EXTEND-IA) involving the stent-retriever device were reviewed. Successful recanalization and favorable clinical outcome were defined by a TICI ≥ 2b and modified Rankin Scale score of ≤ 2 at 90 days following AIS, respectively. A total of 2067 patients harboring an anterior circulation stroke were treated with a stent retriever: 433 patients from 3 randomized trials involving the device and 1634 patients from observational studies. Mean NIH Stroke Scale score on admission was 16.6, and mean time from onset to recanalization was 300 minutes. Successful recanalization was achieved in 82% (95%CI 77–86, 31 studies). The 90 day favorable outcome was achieved in 47% (95%CI 42–5.2, 34 studies) with an overall mortality rate of 17% (95%CI 13–20, 31 studies). Symptomatic intracerebral hemorrhage was identified in 6% (95%CI 4–8, 32 studies). In patients with AIS caused by a proximal intracranial occlusion of the anterior circulation, stent-retriever thrombectomy is safe and restores brain reperfusion in four of five treated patients, allowing favorable clinical outcome in one of two AIS patients with large vessel occlusion. 

February 2016
Shirit Kazum MD, Alon Eisen MD, Eli I. Lev MD, Zaza Iakobishvili MD, Alejandro Solodky MD, David Hasdai MD, Ran Kornowski MD and Aviv Mager MD

Background: Concomitant carotid artery disease (CaAD) in patients with coronary artery disease (CAD) is associated with worse cardiac and neurologic outcomes. The reported prevalence and risk factors for concomitant CaAD in CAD patients varied among previous studies. 

Objectives: To examine these factors in ambulatory patients with CAD and well-documented cholesterol levels treated with cholesterol-lowering medications. 

Methods: We retrospectively analyzed prospectively collected data from 325 unselected patients with CAD (89 women, mean age 68.8 ± 9.9 years) undergoing routine evaluation at the coronary clinic of our hospital. 

Results: The low density lipoprotein-cholesterol (LDL-C) was < 100 mg/dl in 292 patients (90%). Age at onset of CAD symptoms was 59.4 ± 10.8 years. Carotid stenosis ≥ 50% was seen in 83 patients (25.5%) and between 30% and 49% in 55 patients (17%) (duplex method). Carotid stenosis was significantly associated with hypertension (P = 0.032), peripheral arterial disease (P = 0.002) and number of coronary arteries with ≥ 50% stenosis (P = 0.002), and showed a borderline association with age at CAD onset (P = 0.062) and diabetes mellitus (P = 0.053). On linear regression analysis, independent predictors of CaAD were peripheral vascular disease (OR 3.186, 95%CI 1.403–7.236, P = 0.006), number of coronary arteries with ≥ 50% stenosis (OR 1.543, 95%CI 1.136–2.095, P = 0.005), and age at CAD onset (OR 1.028, 95%CI 1.002–1.054, P = 0.003). None of the variables studied predicted freedom from CaAD. 

Conclusions: Carotid atherosclerosis is very common in stable ambulatory patients with CAD regularly taking statins. The risk is higher in patients with peripheral arterial disease, a greater number of involved coronary arteries, and older age at onset of CAD. 

 

December 2015
Shai Rosenberg MD PhD, John M. Gomori MD, Avinoam Reches MD and Marc Gotkine MD
November 2015
Therese Fuchs MD and Amram Torjman MSc

Background: Brief episodes of atrial tachycardia are a common finding in the Holter monitor recordings of elderly patients. Episodes of atrial tachycardia may convert to atrial fibrillation. Current guidelines do not recommend anticoagulant therapy in patients with atrial tachycardia and risk factors for embolism. 

Objectives: To assess the incidence of atrial tachycardia in a 24 hour Holter monitor recording of patients admitted to hospital with ischemic stroke. 

Methods: The patient cohort included two groups: 134 patients admitted with a diagnosis of ischemic stroke (the study group), and 68 consecutive patients admitted with a diagnosis of syncope (the control group). Both groups used a Holter monitor.

Results: There was no difference in the incidence of atrial tachycardia runs between the groups. Patients who suffered a stroke were more likely to be hypertensive (P < 0.05) and more likely to have a CHA2DS2-VASc score of ≥ 3 (P = 0.05).

Conclusions: Atrial tachycardia as recorded on a Holter monitor was not more prevalent in patients presenting with ischemic stroke. The occurrence of atrial tachycardia is not an indication for systemic anticoagulation. 

 

August 2015
Jeffrey Shames MD MPH, Shimon Weitzman MD MPH, Yael Nechemya MD and Avi Porath MD MPH

Background: Stroke is a leading cause of death and disability worldwide. The risk factors for stroke overlap those for cardiovascular disease. Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a particularly strong risk factor and is common, particularly in the elderly. Maccabi Healthcare Services (MHS) has maintained a vascular registry of clinical information for over 100,000 members, among them patients with heart disease and stroke. 

Objectives: To determine the prevalence of stroke in MHS, and whether the association of AF and stroke, along with other risk factors, in the Maccabi population is similar to that in published studies.

Methods: Data on stroke and AF patients aged 45 and older were collected from the database for the year 2010, including age, previous transient ischemic attack (TIA), body mass index (BMI), prior myocardial infarction (MI), diabetes, hypertension, anticoagulation and dyslipidemia. A cross-sectional analysis was used to estimate stroke prevalence by AF status. A case-control analysis was also performed comparing a sample of stroke and non-stroke patients. This permitted estimation of the strength of associations for atrial fibrillation and various other combinations of risk factors with stroke. 

Results: Stroke prevalence ranged from 3.5 (females, age 45–54 years) to 74.1 (males, age 85+) per thousand in non-AF members, and from 29 (males, age 45–54) to 165 (males, age 85+) per thousand for patients with AF. AF patients had significantly more strokes than non-AF patients in all age groups. Stroke prevalence increased with age and was significantly higher in males. Multivariable analysis revealed that male gender, increasing age, AF, hypertension, diabetes, and history of TIA were highly significant risk factors for stroke. In addition, for males, dyslipidemia and prior MI were moderately strong risk factors. 

Conclusions: Analysis of the MHS vascular database yielded useful information on stroke prevalence and association of known risk factors with stroke, which is consistent with the epidemiological literature elsewhere. Further analysis of health fund data could potentially provide useful information in the future. 

 

March 2015
Aaron Ngamolane MBBS, Ludo Taboka Molobe MuDr, Kabo Mojela MBChB, Canuto Silava MD DPBR, FUSP, FCT-MRISP, Francesca Cainelli MD and Sandro Vento MD
August 2014
May 2013
J.Y. Streifler, G. Raphaeli, N.M. Bornstein, N. Molshatzki and D. Tanne

 Background: Patients with transient ischemic attack (TIA) at a high risk of stroke can be identified and should be managed urgently.

Objectives: To investigate whether recognized recommendations are being implemented in Israel.

Methods: An Israeli nationwide registry on patients admitted with stroke and TIA was conducted in all acute care hospitals (NASIS registry) within 2 successive months during 2004, 2007 and 2010. A revised ABCD2 score was applied retrospectively. Patients with TIA were divided into a low risk group (LRG, 0–3 points) and a high risk group (HRG, 4–6 points) and were compared to patients with minor ischemic strokes (MIS, NIHSS score ≤ 5 points).

Results: A total of 3336 patients were included (1023 with TIA: LRG 484, HRG 539, and MIS 2313). LRG patients were younger and had lower rates of most traditional risk factors as compared with HRG and MIS patients. Brain imaging was performed in almost all the patients. Ancillary tests (vascular and cardiac) were overall underused, yet were performed more in LRG (53.2% and 26.9% respectively) than in HRG patients (41.6%, 18.9%). Between periods there was no change in usage of ancillary tests for the LRG and a modest increase in both HRG and MIS patients. For performance of vascular investigations overall, the odds ratio was 1.69 (95% confidence interval 1.42–2.00) comparing 2010 with 2004, but 0.7 (95% CI 0.5–0.9) comparing HRG with LRG. Between periods an increase in statin usage was observed in all groups (OR 2.69, 95% CI 2.25–3.21) but was more marked in MIS patients (OR 3.06, 95% CI 2.47–3.8). 

Conclusions: The approach to TIA risk stratification and management in Israeli hospitals does not follow standards set by current guidelines. Standardized protocols for TIA should be used to assure effective management.

 
 

 

August 2012
R. Eichel, D. Arkadir, S.T. Khoury, A. Werber, S. Kahana-Merhavi, J.M. Gomori, T. Ben-Hur, J.E. Cohen and R.R. Leker
Background: Only 0.5% of stroke patients in Israel are treated with endovascular multi-modal reperfusion therapy (MMRT) each year.

Objectives: To assess our experience with MMRT over the last decade.

Methods: We analyzed data from our stroke registry of patients undergoing MMRT during 2002¨C2011. All patients underwent multi-parametric imaging studies including subtraction angiography according to a predetermined algorithm. Stroke severity was measured with the National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS). Disability was measured with the modified Ranking Scale (mRS) and classified as favorable (mRS ¡Ü 2) or unfavorable. Target vessel recanalization was determined with the thrombolysis in myocardial infarction (TIMI) scale.

Results: During the study period 204 patients were treated 166 of them had complete data sets including mRS scores at 90 days and were included in the analysis. Favorable outcomes at 90 days post-stroke were observed in 37% of patients and the mortality rate was 25%. Patients with favorable outcomes were younger, had significantly lower NIHSS scores on admission and discharge, and more often had complete target vessel recanalization (TIMI 3). On regression analysis the only factor associated with favorable outcome was TIMI 3, whereas increasing age and NIHSS scores on admission and discharge were predictors of poor outcome.

Conclusions: Our data show that MMRT can be successfully implemented in patients with severe stroke in Israel. More than a third of our patients with severe ischemic strokes who could not receive acute treatment were functionally independent after MMRT, demonstrating that this procedure is an important alternative for patients who are not candidates for intravenous tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) or do not achieve recanalization with tPA.
May 2012
D. Antonelli, D. Peres and Y. Turgeman
Background: Alcohol consumption in Israel has increased over the last 20 years. Patients with alcohol use disorder (AUD) who present at a hospital enable early intervention. Objectives: To examine, for the first time, the characteristics of AUD patients in an Israeli general hospital, including whether their alcohol use is documented in their file.

Methods: A group of 178 consecutive patients referred for psychiatric consultation was compared to a second group of 105 hospitalized patients who were not referred. These two groups were studied to compare risk factors for AUD. Patients in both groups were prospectively interviewed using a CAGE questionnaire, demonstrated as an effective screening instrument for AUD. Patients’ files in both groups were examined for documentation of alcohol use.

Results: There was no significant difference between the prevalence of AUD in the two groups. The groups were then merged since no significant difference in the risk factor effects between the two groups was found. The risk factors for AUD in the final statistical analysis were lower educational status, living alone, being born in the Former Soviet Union and weaker religious observance. Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), cigarette smoking and substance use were found to be independent risk factors. Soldier status was associated with significant alcohol misuse and AUD (CAGE1–4). Alcohol consumption was documented in the files of AUD patients in 48% of the first group and 21% of the second.

Conclusions: Physicians often neglect to take a history of alcohol consumption. Routine use of the CAGEquestionnaire is recommended in Israeli general hospitals. Special attention should be given to PTSD patients and to soldiers.
November 2011
E. Greenberg, I. Treger and J. Schwarz

Background: Little is known of the risk factor disparities in first stroke among Jewish and Arab patients undergoing rehabilitation in Israel.

Objectives: To investigate the age, gender and risk factor disparities in first stroke among Jewish (immigrant and non-immigrant) and Arab patients undergoing rehabilitation and to compare the prevalence and odds ratio of stroke risk factors in these patients.

Methods: The database of the Department of Neurological Rehabilitation C at Loewenstein Rehabilitation Center was used to investigate first ischemic and hemorrhagic stroke patients admitted for hospital rehabilitation over a 15 year period, January 1993 to December 2008. Particular attention was paid to age, gender and risk factor disparities.

Results: The 2000 patients with first stroke who were included in the study were grouped as Jewish (immigrant and non-immigrant) and Arab (237 Arabs, 370 non-immigrant Jews and 1393 immigrant Jews). A high percentage of Arab patients were found to have hypertension and diabetes mellitus, while a high percentage of Jewish immigrants had stenosis of the internal carotid artery.

Conclusions: The study demonstrated some differences in the effect of risk factors between the groups. It may be important to address such differences when developing stroke preventative strategies in this population of Jewish and Arab stroke survivors in Israel.
 

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