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עמוד בית
Sat, 22.06.24

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November 2018
Vered Nir MD, Michal Gur MD, Yazeed Toukan MD, Fahed Hakim MD, Arcadi Vachyan MD and Lea Bentur MD

Background: Recurrence of tracheoesophageal fistula (TEF) is reported in 8–20% patients. Factors that may influence recurrence of fistula beyond the postoperative period are not clear.

Objectives: To evaluate possible factors associated with recurrence of TEF beyond the immediate postoperative period.

Methods: A single center, retrospective comparison of patients with and without recurrence of TEF was conducted. Medical records of patients previously operated for TEF who were followed in our pediatric pulmonary institute between January 2007 and December 2016 were reviewed.

Results: The medical records of 74/77 patients previously operated for TEF were evaluated. Nine patients (12%) had a recurrence of TEF and 65 did not. These groups had similar age and gender distribution and similar prevalence of VACTERL association. In addition, they had similar length of atretic gap, rates of thoracoscopic surgery, rates of prolonged need for respiratory assistance post-surgery, and frequency of gastrointestinal symptoms. Notably, the patients who had recurrent TEF had significantly more hospitalizations for respiratory symptoms (P = 0.011) and significantly more episodes of clinical bronchiolitis per patient (P < 0.0001). In addition, the patients with recurrent TEF had significantly more episodes of positive polymerase chain reaction for viruses (P = 0.009).

Conclusions: Hospitalizations for respiratory symptoms as well as clinical and/or viral bronchiolitis are associated with recurrence of TEF. Even though cause and effect cannot be established, these patients should undergo meticulous evaluation for the possibility of recurrence of TEF.

Nir Hod MD MHA, Reut Anconina MD, Daniel Levin MD, Ekaterina Tiktinsky MD, Dina Ezroh Kazap MD, Itai Levi MD, Maria Zektser MD, Vered Stavi MD, Gilbert Sebbag MD and Sophie Lantsberg MD
September 2018
Marina Leitman MD, Marina Levitan MD, Vladimir Tyomkin MSc and Zvi Vered MD FACC FESC

Background: A cardiac restrictive filling patterns are associated with unfavorable prognoses. Cardiac interventions may change the natural history of patients.

Objectives: To investigate the prevalence of restrictive filling pattern in routine echocardiographic examinations and their association with morbidity and mortality.

Methods: The clinical and echocardiographic data of patients with newly diagnosed restrictive filling pattern were analyzed and summarized.

Results: Among 8000 patients who underwent an echocardiographic examination in our hospital in 2013, a restrictive filling pattern was identified in 256. Of these, 134 showed a restrictive filling pattern that was newly diagnosed. Mean age was 69 years. Hypertension, diabetes, and ischemic heart disease were found in 81%, 60%, and 53%, respectively. Left ventricular ejection fraction was 42% ± 16%. Severe valvular abnormalities were found in 18%. During follow-up (29 ± 15 months), 40% of patients died. The strongest predictor of mortality (73%) was moderate or more advanced aortic stenosis, P = 0.005. Renal failure was an important independent predictor of mortality (53%, P < 0.05). A very high E/E' ratio ≥ 20, was another independent mortality predictor (50%, P < 0.03). Patients who died were less likely to have undergone cardiac interventions than those who survived (26% vs. 45%, P < 0.03).

Conclusions: Prevalence of restrictive filling among echocardiographic studies is 3.2%. In a half of these, the restrictive filling pattern is a new diagnosis. Patients who are diagnosed with a new restrictive filling pattern have higher mortality rates. Patients with restrictive filling should be evaluated thoroughly for possible coronary artery or valvular heart disease.

July 2018
Yuval Cavari MD, Victor Ginzburg MD, Gabriel Szendro MD, Anatoly Leytzin MD, Evelin Novik Farkash MD and Isaac Lazar MD
May 2017
Marina Leitman MD, Vladimir Tyomkin MSc, Eli Peleg MD, Therese Fuchs MD, Ziad Gabara MD and Zvi Vered MD FACC FESC

Background: In recent years cardioversion of atrial fibrillation has become a routine procedure, enabling symptomatic functional improvement in most cases. However, some patients develop complications after cardioversion. Identifying these individuals is an important step toward improving patient outcome.

Objectives: To characterize those patients who may not benefit from cardioversion or who may develop complications following cardioversion.

Methods: We retrospectively analyzed 186 episodes of cardioversion in 163 patients with atrial fibrillation who were admitted to our cardiology department between 2008 and 2013 based on their clinical and echocardiographic data. Patients were divided into two groups: those with uncomplicated cardioversion, and those who developed complications after cardioversion.

Results: Of the 186 episodes, cardioversion was done in 112 men (60%) and 74 women (40%), P < 0.00001. Complications after cardioversion occurred in 25 patients (13%). These patients were generally older (72 vs. 65 years, P < 0.01), were more often diabetic (52% vs. 27%, P = 0.005), had undergone emergency cardioversion (64% vs. 40%, P = 0.01), had left ventricular hypertrophy (left ventricular mass 260 vs. 218 g, P = 0.01), had larger left atrium (left atrial volume 128 vs. 102 ml, P < 0.009), and more often died from complications of cardioversion (48% vs. 16%). They had significant mitral regurgitation (20% vs. 4%, P = 0.03) and higher pulmonary artery pressure (50 vs. 42 mm Hg, P < 0.02).

Conclusions: People with complications after cardioversion tend to be older, are more often diabetic and more often have severe mitral regurgitation. In these patients, the decision to perform cardioversion should consider the possibility of complications.

Sa’ar Minha MD, Tali Taraboulos MD, Gabby Elbaz-Greener MD, Eran Kalmanovich MD, Zvi Vered MD and Alex Blatt MD MSc
March 2017
Danny Alon MD, Gideon Y. Stein MD PhD, Vered Hadas-Golan RN, Luba Tau MD, Tal Brosh MD and Dan Turner MD

Background: Guidelines recommend hepatitis B virus (HBV) vaccination of all adults positive for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). Immune responses to single-antigen HBV vaccine among HIV-positive patients are low when compared with HIV-negative adults. Sci-B-Vac™ is a recombinant third-generation HBV that may be advantageous in this population.

Objectives: To examine the immune responses to Sci-B-Vac among HIV-positive adults.

Methods: We conducted a prospective cohort study involving HIV-positive adults who had negative HBV serology (HBSAg, HBSAb, HBcoreAb). Sci-B-Vac at 10 µg/dose was administered intramuscularly upon recruitment and after 1 and 6 months. HBSAb levels were checked 1 month after each dose; a level > 10 mlU/ml was considered protective. Data regarding age, gender, CD4 level, and viral load were collected.

Results: The study group comprised 31 patients. Average CD4 count was 503 ± 281 cells/ml, and average viral load was 44 copies/ml. Median interquartile range (IQR) HBVAb titers after the first, second and third immunizations were 0 (0, 3.5), 30 (6, 126) and 253 (81, 408) mlU/ml. Significant titer elevations were found between the second and third immunizations (P = 0.0003). The rate of patients considered protected was 16% after the first, 65% after the second (P < 0.0001), and 84% after the third dose (P = 0.045). No adverse events were reported. More patients under the age of 40 years responded to the first immunization (28% vs. 0%, P = 0.038). CD4 level had no influence on immunization rates.

Conclusions: Sci-B-Vac might achieve better immunization rates among HIV-positive adults compared to the single-antigen vaccine and thus deserves further evaluation in a randomized, double-blind study in this population.

October 2016
August 2016
Aharon Kessel MD, Yael Graif MD, Zahava Vadasz MD, Vered Schichter-Konfino MD, Meital Almog MD, Shai Cohen MD, Valery Teplitski MD, Nili Stein MPH, Ilaria Baiardini PhD, Marcus Maurer MD and Elias Toubi MD

Background: Chronic urticaria (CU) is a common disabling disorder. The CU-Q2oL (Chronic Urticaria Quality of Life Questionnaire) is a specific questionnaire for evaluating quality of life in CU patients. It consists of 23 items divided into six quality-of-life dimensions. It was initially developed in Italy and later validated in other countries.

Objectives: To validate and adapt the CU-Q2oL to the Hebrew language in order to make it suitable for use in Israel. 

Methods: The CU-Q2oL questionnaire was translated to Hebrew. A group of 119 CU patients were asked to complete this version, in addition to the Dermatology Life Quality Index (DLQI) and Urticaria Activity Score (UAS) questionnaires. A factorial analysis was performed to identify CU-Q2oL subscales, internal consistency and convergent validity assessment, as well as factors determining quality-of-life scores.

Results: The factor analysis identified six scales of the Israeli CU-Q2oL: (i) sleep and concentration, (ii) function and mental status, (iii) embarrassment and clothing limitations, (iv) itching, (v) eating behavior and medication side effects, and (vi) swelling, which accounted for 77% of the data variance. Five scales showed good internal consistency over 0.81. The mean ± SD score of CU-Q2oL in our patients with CIU was 41 ± 21.7. We found a strong positive correlation between the overall scores of CU-Q2oL and DLQI questionnaires (r = 0.8, P < 0.01). Additionally, we found a positive correlation between UAS and both CU-Q2oL and DLQI (r = 0.62, P < 0.01, and r = 0.53, P < 0.01, respectively). 

Conclusions: This study demonstrates that the Israeli CU-Q2oL questionnaire is suitable for both clinical use and research in Israel.

 

July 2016
Marina Leitman MD, Eli Peleg MD, Ruthie Shmueli and Zvi Vered MD FACC FESC

Background: The search for the presence of vegetations in patients with suspected infective endocarditis is a major indication for trans-esophageal echocardiographic (TEE) examinations. Advances in harmonic imaging and ongoing improvement in modern echocardiographic systems allow adequate quality of diagnostic images in most patients.

Objectives: To investigate whether TEE examinations are always necessary for the assessment of patients with suspected infective endocarditis. 

Methods: During 2012–2014 230 trans-thoracic echo (TTE) exams in patients with suspected infective endocarditis were performed at our center. Demographic, epidemiological, clinical and echocardiographic data were collected and analyzed, and the final clinical diagnosis and outcome were determined. 

Results: Of 230 patients, 24 had definite infective endocarditis by clinical assessment. TEE examination was undertaken in 76 of the 230 patients based on the clinical decision of the attending physician. All TTE exams were classified as: (i) positive, i.e., vegetations present; (ii) clearly negative; or (iii) non-conclusive. Of the 92 with clearly negative TTE exams, 20 underwent TEE and all were negative. All clearly negative patients had native valves, adequate quality images, and in all 92 the final diagnosis was not infective endocarditis. Thus, the negative predictive value of a clearly negative TTE examination was 100%.

Conclusions: In patients with native cardiac valves referred for evaluation for infective endocarditis, an adequate quality TTE with clearly negative examination may be sufficient for the diagnosis.

 

December 2015
Vered Schichter-Konfino MD, Zahava Vadasz MD and Elias Toubi MD
July 2015
Marina Leitman MD, Laurian Copel MD, Simcha Rosenblatt MD, Josef Gurevich MD and Zvi Vered MD FACC FESC
June 2015
Barak Benjamin MD, Roy Zaltzman MD PhD, Baruch Shpitz MD, Carlos R. Gordon MD DSc and Shmuel Avital MD
April 2015
Vered Schichter-Konfino MD, Katalin Halasz, Galia Grushko, Ayelet Snir PhD, Tharwat Haj PhD, Zahava Vadasz MD PhD, Aharon Kessel MD, Israel Potasman MD and Elias Toubi MD

Abstract

Background: The mass influx of immigrants from tuberculosis-endemic countries into Israel was followed by a considerable increase in the incidence of tuberculosis (TB). All contacts of active TB patients are obliged to be screened by tuberculin skin tests (TST) and, if found positive, prophylactic treatment is considered.

Objectives: To assess the utility of interferon-gamma (IFNγ)-release assay with a prolonged follow-up in preventing unnecessary anti-TB therapy in individuals with suspected false positive results.

Methods: Between 2008 and 2012 the QuantiFERON TB gold-in-tube test (QFT-G) was performed in 278 sequential individuals who were mostly TST-positive and/or were in contact with an active TB patient. In all, whole blood was examined by the IFNγ-release assay. We correlated the TST diameter with the QFT-G assay and followed those patients with a negative assay.

Results: The QFT-G test was positive in only 72 (42%) of all 171 TST-positive individuals. There was no correlation between the diameter of TST and QFT-G positivity. Follow-up over 5 years was available in 128 (62%) of all QFT-G-negative individuals. All remained well and none developed active TB.

Conclusions: A negative QFT-G test may obviate the need for anti-TB therapy in more than half of those with a positive TST.

Lior Zeller MD, Leonid Barski MD, Elena Shleyfer MD, Uri Netz MD, Vered Stavi MD and Mahmoud Abu-Shakra MD
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