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עמוד בית
Sat, 15.06.24

Search results

April 2024
Raymond Farah MD, Dvir Novak MD, Rola Khamisy-Farah MD

Background: Syncope is responsible for approximately 1–3% of all emergency department (ED) visits and up to 6% of all hospital admissions in the United States. Although often of no long-term consequence, syncope can be the first presentation of a range of serious conditions such as strokes, tumors, or subarachnoid hemorrhages. Head computed tomography (CT) scanning is therefore commonly ordered in the ED for patients presenting with syncope to rule out any of these conditions, which may present without other associated physical or neurological findings on initial examination. However, the diagnostic yield of head CTs in patients presenting with syncope is unclear.

Objectives: To determine the diagnostic yield of head CT in the ED in patients with syncope.

Methods: We conducted an observational analytical retrospective cross-sectional study on 360 patients diagnosed with syncope who underwent a head CT to determine the diagnostic yield of syncope to determine whether head CT is necessary for every patient presenting with syncope to the ED.

Results: The total of new CT findings was 11.4%. Percentages varied between men (12.8%) and women (9.7%), P = 0.353. There were no significant differences between sexes regarding the findings in head CT, yet the incidence increased, especially among elderly males.

Conclusions: Age had a more significant impact on diagnostic yield of syncope than head CT. The use of a head CT scan as a routine diagnosis tool in patients with syncope is unjustifiable unless there is an indication based on medical history or physical examination.

June 2023
Majdi Halabi MD, Hagar Drimer-Shabtai MD, Inna Rosenfeld MD, Adi Sharabi-Nov MA MPH, Mussa Saad MD, Ibrahim Marai MD, Ziad Abuiznait MD, Ayelet Armon-Omer PhD, Zippi Regev-Avraham PhD, Zeev Israeli MD

Background: Implantable loop recorders (ILRs) are a central tool in the evaluation of unexplained syncope. These devices record and store electrocardiograms, both automatically and on patient-dependent activation. Therefore, obtaining optimal diagnostic results relies on a patient's comprehension and collaboration.

Objectives: To evaluate the effect of ethnic background and mother-tongue language on the diagnostic yield (DY) of ILRs.

Methods: Patients at two medical centers in Israel, who had ILRs as part of syncope workup were included. Inclusion criteria were age over 18 years and an ILR for at least one year (or less if the cause of syncope was detected). Patient demographics, ethnic background, and previous medical history were recorded. All findings from ILR recordings, activation mode (manual vs. automatic), and treatment decisions (none, ablation, device implantation) were collected.

Results: The study comprised 94 patients, 62 Jews (i.e., ethnic majority) and 32 non-Jews (i.e., ethnic minority). While baseline demographic characteristics, medical history, and drug therapy were similar in both groups, Jewish patients were significantly older at the time of device implantation: 64.3 ± 16.0 years of age vs. 50.6 ± 16.9, respectively; (P < 0.001). Arrhythmias recorded in both groups as well as treatment decisions and device activation mode were similar. Total follow-up time from device implantation was longer in the non-Jewish vs. the Jewish group (17.5 ± 12.2 vs. 24.0 ± 12.4 months, respectively; P < 0.017).

Conclusions: The DY of ILR implanted for unexplained syncope did not seem to be influenced by patient's mother-tongue language or ethnicity.

April 2022
Victor G. Levin BSc, Ayal Romem MD MHA, Gali Epstein Shochet PhD, Ori Wand MD, David Dahan MD, and David Shitrit MD

Background: Endobronchial ultrasound transbronchial needle aspiration (EBUS-TBNA) is a frequently used method for obtaining tissue samples for the diagnosis of various respiratory conditions, including lung cancer staging. In most cases, EBUS-TBNA is performed under moderate sedation (MS). However, in cases of respiratory compromised patients, if this procedure is performed, it is conducted under general anesthesia (GA).

Objective: To assess the diagnostic yield of EBUS-TBNA among respiratory compromised patients.

Methods: Data of consecutive patients (n=191) who underwent EBUS-TBNA at our medical center between January 2019 and December 2019 were retrospectively analyzed. Respiratory compromised patients underwent GA and patients without respiratory compromise were mostly moderately sedated (MS). Characteristics, diagnostic yield, and complication rates were compared.

Results: Diagnostic yield was similar between the two sedation modes (89% in GA group and 78% in the MS group, P = 0.11). The number of total samples obtained per procedure was significantly higher in the GA vs. the MS group (4.1 ± 2.1 vs. 2.1 ± 1.33, P < 0.01). The overall complication rate was 13% and 20.9% in the GA vs. the MS groups, respectively (P = 0.14), with the most frequent complication being minor bleeding. Interestingly, while the number of brushings, bronchoalveolar lavage, and endobronchial biopsy were similar, the percent of subjects who underwent transbronchial biopsy was significantly higher in the GA group (49% vs. 24.2%, P < 0.01).

Conclusion: EBUS-TBNA performed under GA among respiratory compromised patients is safe and has similar diagnostic yield to that of patients without a respiratory compromise

May 2021
Kamal Masarweh MD, Clari Felszer-Fisch MD, Eric Shinwell MD, Jamal Hasanein MD, Marina Peniakov MD, Scott A. Weiner MD, Bella Lurye-Marcu MD, Dan Miron MD

Background: The incidence of congenital cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection in Israel is 0.7%. Only 10–15% are symptomatic. Valganciclovir has been shown to improve hearing and neurodevelopmental outcomes in neonates with symptomatic congenital CMV infection. Targeted examination of infants who fail routine neonatal hearing screening or have clinical or laboratory findings suggestive of symptomatic congenital CMV infection may be a cost-effective approach.

Objectives: To assess the possibility of targeted examination for the detection of newborns with symptomatic congenital CMV infection.

Methods: A prospective observational study was conducted in 2014–2015 at two medical centers in northern Israel. Included were all newborns who were tested in the first 3 days of life by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for urine CMV DNA (n=692), either for failure the hearing screening (n=539, 78%), clinical or laboratory findings suggestive of symptomatic congenital CMV infection, or primary CMV infection during pregnancy (n=153, 22%).

Results: During the study period 15,433 newborns were born. The predicted rate of infection was 10–15% (symptomatic) of 0.7% of newborns, namely 0.07–0.105% or 10–15 infants. In fact, 15 infants (0.11%, 95% confidence interval 0.066–0.175) were diagnosed with symptomatic congenital CMV infection, 2/539 (0.37%) in the failed hearing group and 13/153 (8%) in the clinical/laboratory findings group. The incidence of symptomatic congenital CMV infection was within the predicted range.

Conclusions: Targeted examination of only 4.5% (n=692) of newborns detected the predicted number of infants with symptomatic congenital CMV infection in whom valganciclovir therapy is recommended

November 2020
Amir Mari MD, Tawfik Khoury MD, Mahmud Mahamid MD, Shorbaji Akram MD, Yael Kopelman MD, and Fadi Abu Baker MD

Background: While the routine performance of terminal ileum (TI) intubation during colonoscopy procedures is perceived to have a low yield, its utility during colonoscopies performed for specific indications have not been well studied.

Objectives: To assess the diagnostic yield of an indication-based ileoscopy in real-life practice.

Methods: The authors reviewed endoscopic reports of patients who underwent colonoscopies over an 8-year period (2011–2018) and had routine ileoscopy during these procedures. Demographic data, indications for colonoscopy, and endoscopic findings were documented. Diagnostic yield and odds ratio for TI findings were calculated.

Results: Over 30,000 colonoscopy reports performed during the study period were reviewed. Ilesocopy was performed in 1800 patients, 216 patients had findings in the TI (ileitis or ulcers). TI findings were more prevalent in younger ages (38.3 ± 17.6 vs. 43.6 ± 20, P < 0.05). The greatest yield of ileoscopy was evident when performed for the evaluation of chronic abdominal pain and diarrhea (14.4% vs. 9.3%, odds ratio [OR] 1.62, P < 0.05). Positive fecal occult blood test (FOBT) (OR 0.1, 95% confidence interval [95%CI] 0.02–0.5, P = 0.005) and constipation (OR 0.44, 95%CI 0.2–0.9, P = 0.04) were negatively associated with TI findings.

Conclusions: Ileoscopy may have the greatest utility in evaluating suspected inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) patients, but may not add value to the evaluation of constipation and positive FOBT

March 2020
Tal David Berger MD, Shelly Soffer MD, Tal Vurzel-Harel MD, Ari Silbermintz MD, Hava Fleishaker, Raanan Shamir MD and Noam Zevit MD

Background: The number of investigative esophagogastroduodenoscopies (EGD) in children has increased over several decades, despite their unclear diagnostic yields.

Objectives: To evaluate the indications for performing EGD, their diagnostic yields, and consequences on pediatric patient management.

Methods: A retrospective chart review was performed of consecutive pediatric patients aged 0–18 years, who underwent EGD between January and August 2014.

Results: During the study period, 547 EGD were performed on 478 children. The most frequent indications were suspected celiac disease, chronic non-specific abdominal pain, persistent Helicobacter pylori infection, and gastrointestinal hemorrhage. The yield of the diagnostic EGD was 59.2%, and the most common new diagnoses were celiac disease (28%), Helicobacter pylori-positive gastritis (16.5%), and Crohn’s disease (5.4%). Of the patients with documented follow-up, 74.1% reported improved symptoms. Procedures performed for chronic unexplained abdominal pain had significantly lower yields (26.2%) and only 39.3% improved at follow-up.

Conclusions: Our findings suggest a general high diagnostic yield for EGD in pediatric patients, stemming mainly from patients in whom a specific condition was suspected a priori. However, the role of the procedure in the diagnosis and management of non-specific gastrointestinal complaints was minor suggesting that EGD may be superfluous for some of these patients.

February 2016
Moshe Herskovitz MD and Yitzhak Schiller MD PhD

Background: Resective epilepsy surgery is an accepted treatment option for patients with drug-resistant epilepsy (DRE). Presurgical evaluation consists of a phase 1 non-invasive evaluation and a phase 2 invasive evaluation, when necessary.

Objectives: To assess the results of phase 1 evaluation in patients with focal DRE.

Methods: This observational retrospective study was performed in all consecutive DRE patients admitted to our clinic from January 2001 to July 2010, and who underwent a presurgical evaluation which included at least magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan and long-term video EEG monitoring (LTVEM).

Results: A total of 253 consecutive patients with a diagnosis of DRE (according to the ILAE recommendations) who underwent presurgical evaluation were extracted from our clinic and department registry. In 45 of these patients either imaging or ictal video EEG data were missing; the final analysis therefore involved 208 patients. The combined result of the LTVEM and the MRI scan were as follows: 102 patients (49% of the cohort) had a lesion on the MRI scan, in 77 patients (37% of the cohort) the LTVEM results were localizing and congruent with the MRI findings, and in 25 patients (12% of the cohort) the LTVEM results were either non-localizing or incongruent with the MRI findings. In 106 patients (51% of the cohort) the MRI scan was normal or had a non-specific lesion. The LTVEM was localizing in 66 of these patients (31.7% of the cohort) and non-localizing in 40 (19.2% of the cohort).

Conclusions: Although some of the patients with focal DRE can be safely treated with resective surgery based solely on the findings of phase 1 evaluation, a substantial percent of patients do need to undergo a phase 2 evaluation before a final surgical decision is made.


January 2015
Zohar Mor MD MPH MPH, Orly Weinstein MD MHA, Dini Tischler-Aurkin MD MPA, Alex Leventhal MD MPH MPA, Alon Yaniv and Itamar Grotto MD PhD MPH

Background: Since 2006 more than 60,000 migrants arrived in Israel from the Horn of Africa (HoA: Sudan, Eritrea, Ethiopia). They were detained in prison and screened for tuberculosis (TB) by means of an interview and chest X-ray (CXR).

Objectives: To evaluate the yield of this screening process.

Methods: This cross-sectional study evaluated the validity of CXR in a random sample of 1087 of the 5335 HoA migrants (20.4%) who arrived in 2009, and assessed its related costs.

Results: Sixty-two migrants (5.7%) had CXRs with TB-suspicious findings, and 11 of them were finally diagnosed with TB (17.7% of all TB-suspicious CXRs). TB point-prevalence was 1000 cases per 100,000 migrants (1.0%). As no additional TB cases were diagnosed on arrival, CXR sensitivity, specificity and positive predictive value were 100%, 96.1% and 17.7%, respectively. The interview did not contribute to the detection of migrants with TB. Direct costs related to the detection of single TB cases in prison was 17,970 shekels (US$ 4585), lower than the treating cost of 28,745 shekels ($ 7335). During 2008–2010, 88 HoA migrants who had been screened at the prison after crossing the border were later diagnosed with TB in the community. The average annual TB incidence was 132 cases/100,000 migrants. We traced 56 (63.6%) of the CXRs that were performed during detention. Of those, 41 (73.2%) were unremarkable, 8 (14.2%) were TB suspicious and 7 (12.5%) had non-TB-related abnormalities.

Conclusions: CXR-based screening is a valid and cost-saving tool for screening  HoA migrants for TB; the interview has significant limitations. 

February 2014
Itai Gat, Mordechai Dulitzki, Eyal Schiff, Eyal Sivan and Michal J. Simchen
Background: Homozygous carriers of factor V Leiden (FVL) have an up to 80-fold increased risk of venous thrombosis, but the risk of obstetric complications in FVL homozygosity is unclear.

To compare obstetric and thromboembolic complications among factor V Leiden (FVL) homozygous and heterozygous carriers treated with prophylactic dose anticoagulation during pregnancy.

In this retrospective case-control study we performed a chart review for the years 2004–2010 of homozygous and heterozygous FVL carriers who were treated with low molecular weight heparin (LMWH) at a dose of 0.6 mg/kg/day during pregnancy. Adverse outcomes included thromboembolic and obstetric complications. A composite adverse obstetric outcome was defined as the presence of at least one of the following: late intrauterine fetal demise, severe intrauterine growth restriction (< 5th percentile), preeclampsia, placental abruption. Pregnancy outcomes of homozygous and heterozygous FVL carriers were compared.

We compared the pregnancies of 13 homozygous FVL women with those of 82 heterozygous FVL carriers. Thromboembolic events occurred only in heterozygous FVL controls. Gestational age and birth weight were similar. The composite adverse obstetric outcome rate was higher for homozygous compared with heterozygous FVL carriers (23.1% vs. 11%, respectively), although not statistically significant. A trend for prematurity among homozygous FVL patients was evident, with 2/13 women (15.3%) in the homozygous FVL group giving birth before 34 weeks gestation, compared with only 2/82 (2.3%) in the heterozygous group.

Pregnancy outcome was similar for homozygous and heterozygous FVL carriers on LMWH thromboprophylaxis. The overall likelihood of thromboembolic complications was low. Thromboprophylaxis may decrease the risk for placental and thromboembolic complications in homozygous FVL patients to a similar level as in heterozygotes.
December 2011
A.Ben-Haroush, J. Farhi, I. Ben-Aharon, O. Sapir, H. Pinkas and B. Fisch

Background: Adjuvant/neoadjuvant chemotherapy in breast cancer patients may be associated with amenorrhea and a marked reduction in ovarian reserve.

Objectives: To assess the use of letrozole with follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) in gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) analogue protocols, based on reported attempts to avoid the estradiol (E2) increase during controlled ovarian hyperstimulation for embryo cryopreservation in breast cancer patients using a combination of low dose FSH and aromatase inhibitor (letrozole) in a GnRH-antagonist protocol.

Methods: Twenty-four breast cancer patients were treated with recombinant FSH (150–450 U/day) and letrozole (5 mg/day) in a long GnRH-agonist (n=7) or GnRH-antagonist (n=17) protocol. After oocyte retrieval, insemination and/or intracytoplasmic sperm injection was performed. The embryos were frozen.

Results: The average interval from surgery to oocyte retrieval was 40 days. Average duration of treatment was 9.6 days and mean peak E2 level 1342 ± 1091 pmol/L, yielding 16.0 ± 16.3 oocytes (range 0–82). Mean fertilization rate was 69.5 ± 20.4% and mean number of embryos cryopreserved 10.3 ± 9.3. More oocytes were retrieved with the long GnRH protocol, but the difference was not statistically significant (24.8 ± 24.6 vs. 12.0 ± 8.8 pmol/L, P = 0.07).

Conclusions: As previously reported, ovarian stimulation with letrozole and FSH, in both the long GnRH-agonist and GnRH-antagonist protocols, is apparently effective in breast cancer patients and spares them exposure to high E2 levels.

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.

March 2010
K. Weiss, A. Fattal-Valevski and S. Reif

Background: Infants who have experienced an apparent life-threatening event typically undergo an extensive evaluation to rule out serious underlying conditions.

Objectives: To evaluate the yield of different tests performed after an apparent life-threatening event and to identify high risk groups in which more extensive diagnostic tests are required.

Methods: A retrospective study was conducted in a children's hospital over a 4 year period during which the charts of infants who were admitted with an apparent life-threatening event were reviewed. The yield for each diagnostic test was established according to the ratio of positive results contributing to the diagnosis of the apparent life-threatening event.

Results: The study included 69 infants between the ages of 1 week and 1 year. There were abnormal findings in 36% of the cases. Gastroesophageal reflux was the most common diagnosis (60%). In the remaining patients the diagnosis was either seizures (12%) or respiratory tract infections (28%). Tests used for the diagnosis of cardiac, metabolic and non-respiratory infections had no yield. A positive correlation was found between abnormal test results and abnormal physical examination (P = 0.001), an abnormal perinatal history (P = 0.017), and age older than 2 months (P = 0.002).

Conclusions: The yield of most of the tests performed after an apparent life-threatening event is low, especially in infants with a normal perinatal history and physical examination.

January 2010
B. Boursi, H. Guzner-Gur, Y. Mashich, U. Miler, E. Gur, R. Inbar, A. Blachar, F. Sperber, S. Kleiman, A. Yafo, H. Elran, T. Sella, I. Naumov, D. Kazanov, S. Kraus, L. Galazan, N. Reshef, T. Sion-Tadmor, M. Rozen, E. Liberman, M. Moshkowitz and N. Arber

Background: Cancer is a leading cause of mortality worldwide. The most effective way to combat cancer is by prevention and early detection.

Objectives: To evaluate the outcome of screening an asymptomatic population for the presence of benign and neoplastic lesions.

Methods: Routine screening tests for prevention and/or early detection of 11 common cancers were conducted in 300 consecutive asymptomatic, apparently healthy adults, aged 25–77 years. Other tests were performed as indicated.

Results: Malignant and benign lesions were found in 3.3% and 5% of the screenees, respectively, compared to 1.7% in the general population. The most common lesions were in the gastrointestinal tract followed by skin, urogenital tract and breast. Advanced age and a family history of a malignancy were associated with increased risk for cancer with an odds ratio of 9 and 3.5, respectively (95% confidence interval 1.1–71 and 0.9–13, respectively). Moreover, high serum C-reactive protein levels and polymorphisms in the APC and CD24 genes indicated high cancer risk. When two of the polymorphisms existed in an individual, the risk for a malignant lesion was extremely high (23.1%; OR[1] 14, 95% CI[2] 2.5–78).

Conclusions: Screening asymptomatic subjects identifies a significant number of neoplastic lesions at an early stage. Incorporating data on genetic polymorphisms in the APC and CD24 genes can further identify individuals who are at increased risk for cancer. Cancer can be prevented and/or diagnosed at an early stage using the screening facilities of a multidisciplinary outpatient clinic.

[1] OR = odds ratio

[2] CI = confidence interval

February 2008
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