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עמוד בית
Sat, 27.02.21

April 2010

Original Articles
D. Dicker, P. Herskovitz, M.Katz, E. Atar and G.N. Bachar

Background: Obesity has become a major public health problem worldwide.

Objectives: To examine the effect of orlistat in promoting weight loss and its specific effect on the visceral adipose tissue and subcutaneous adipose tissue as evaluated by computed tomography.

Methods: A prospective case series study of 10 obese subjects was conducted. The 6 women and 4 men, age 50–67 years (mean 59 ± 8 years), had a mean body mass index of 34.1 ± 3.2 kg/m2. All subjects were prescribed a mildly hypocaloric diet (600 kcal/day deficit). In addition, all subjects were treated with orlistat 120 mg 3 times a day for 20.1 ± 7 weeks.

Results: The subjects had lost approximately 8.2 kg each, or 8.4% of their initial body weight. Mean body weight decreased from 98 ± 13 to 89.8 ± 13.6 kg at the last follow-up visit (P = 0.0001) mean BMI[1] decreased from 34.1 ± 3.2 to 30.3 ± 3.9 kg/m2 (P = 0.0001), and mean waist circumference from 113.8 ± 11.4 to 107.6 ± 10 cm (P = 0.0006). Mean total abdominal adipose tissue volume, evaluated by computed tomography, decreased from 426 ± 104.3 to 369.8 ± 99.6 mm3 (P = 0.0001). Mean abdominal SAT[2] volume decreased from 251.1 ± 78.8 to 224 ± 81.1 mm3 (P = 0.006), and mean abdominal VAT[3] volume decreased from 176 ± 76.7 to 141.6 ± 67 mm3 (P = 0.0001). Thus, the total abdominal adipose tissue volume for the whole group decreased by 15.4%, and most of this decrease was attributable to the reduction in VAT (24.8%) as opposed to SAT (only 12% reduction) (P = 0.03). The weight reduction that occurred during the study was accompanied by a statistically significant reduction in levels of total cholesterol, low density lipoprotein-cholesterol, triglycerides, and fasting blood glucose.

Conclusions: Our results demonstrate the effect of orlistat in reducing human visceral adipose tissue as evaluated by CT. The benefit of the treatment is further supported by the statistically significant reduction in cardiovascular risk factors.

[1] BMI = body mass index

[2] SAT = subcutaneous adipose tissue

[3] VAT = visceral adipose tissue


T. Eidlitz-Markus, M. Mukamel, Y. Haimi-Cohen, J. Amir and A. Zeharia

Background: Pathologic breast conditions are rare in childhood and adolescence. The spectrum of breast disease in the pediatric age group is different from that in adults, and most lesions are benign

Objectives: To describe the causes and characteristics of breast asymmetry in adolescents with normal endocrine profiles and sexual development.

Methods: The files of patients with a diagnosis of breast asymmetry referred to a tertiary pediatric center from 1990 to 2007 were reviewed for history and findings on physical examination with or without imaging, treatment and outcome.

Results: Eleven patients aged 12.5 to 18 years were identified. The cause of the breast asymmetry was traced to unpreventable medical factors in eight patients (physiologic, Poland anomaly, scleroderma), preventable/iatrogenic factors in two patients (chest tissue biopsy, thoracic drain), and possible combined medical-iatrogenic factors in one patient (scoliosis treated by a body brace). All patients were referred for breast reconstruction after full breast development.

Conclusions: Severe breast asymmetry in adolescence may be due to congenital factors, diseases involving the breast tissue, or to the effects of medical treatment, and may have severe adverse psychological and social implications. To prevent iatrogenic breast asymmetry, physicians should be made aware of the sensitivity of the breast tissue and should avoid unnecessary tests/procedures that involve the chest wall. In most cases a precise medical history and physical examination can differentiate between physiologic and non-physiologic causes.

A. Stepansky, R. Gold-Deutch, N. Poluksht, P. Hagag, C. Benbassat, A. Mor, D. Aharoni, I. Wassermann, Z. Halpern and A. Halevy

Background: Hypocalcaemia following thyroid and parathyroid surgery is a well-recognized potential complication.

Objectives: To determine the utility of intraoperative quick parathormone assay in predicting severe hypocalcemia development following parathyroidectomy for a single-gland adenoma causing primary hyperparathyroidism.

Methods: A retrospective cohort study was performed. IO-QPTH[1] values were measured at time 0 (T0) before incision, and 10 (T10) and 30 minutes (T30) following excision of the hyperfunctioning gland. Percent decrease in IO-QPTH at 10 minutes (T10), maximum percent decrease of IO-QPTH value, and lowest actual IO-QPTH value obtained at surgery were used to determine any correlation with the development of postoperative hypocalcemia requiring treatment.

Results: Percent decrease in IO-QPTH at 10 minutes, maximum percent decrease in IO-QPTH and lowest IO-QPTH value did not correlate with the lowest postoperative calcium levels measured 18 hours after surgery (r = 0.017, P = 0.860 r = 0.018, P = 0.850 and r = 0.002, P = 0.985 respectively). For the purposes of our analysis, patients were subdivided into three groups. Group 1 comprised 68 patients with normal calcium levels (serum Ca 8.6¨C10.3 mg/dl) Group 2 had 28 patients with hypocalcemia (8.1¨C8.6 mg/dl) Group 3 included 12 patients with severe hypocalcemia (calcium level ¡Ü 8.0 mg/dl) requiring calcium supplementation due to symptoms of hypocalcemia. There was no difference between the three groups in the lowest IO-QPTH value (P = 0.378), percent decrease in IO-QPTH (P = 0.305) and maximum percent decrease in IO-QPTH (P = 0.142).

Conclusions: IO-QPTH evaluation was not useful in predicting the group of patients susceptible to develop severe postoperative hypocalcemia. 

[1] IO-QPTH = intraoperative quick parathormone

A. Hamdan, R. Kornowski, E.I. Lev, A. Sagie, S. Fuchs, D. Brosh, A. Battler and A.R Assali

Background: Myocardial blush grade is a useful marker of microvascular reperfusion that may influence left ventricular dilatation.

Objectives: To assess the impact of myocardial blush grade on LV[1] remodeling in patients undergoing successful primary  PCI³ for first anterior ST elevation myocardial infarction.

Methods: In 26 consecutive patients MB[2] grade was evaluated immediately after primary PCI[3]. Each patient underwent transthoracic echocardiography at 24 hours and 6 months after PCI for evaluation of LV volumes. LV remodeling was defined as an increase in end-diastolic volume by ≥ 20%.

Results: The presence of myocardial reperfusion (MB 2-3) after primary PCI was associated with a significantly lower rate of remodeling than the absence of myocardial reperfusion (MB 0-1) (17.6% vs. 66.6%, P = 0.012). Accordingly, at 6 months, patients with MB 2-3 had significantly smaller LV end-diastolic volume (94 ± 21.5 ml vs. 115.2 ± 26) compared with patients with MB 0-1. In univariate analysis, only MB (0-1 versus 2-3) was associated with increased risk of LV remodeling (odds ratio 9.3, 95% confidence interval 1.45–60.21, P = 0.019).

Conclusions: Impaired microvascular reperfusion, as assessed by MB 0-1, may be associated with LV remodeling in patients with STEMI[4] treated successfully with primary PCI.


[1] LV = left ventricular

[2] MB = myocardial blush

[3] PCI = percutaneous coronary intervention

[4] STEMI = ST elevation myocardial infarction

A. Tsur and Z. Segal

Background: Falls are common events among hospital inpatients and constitute a major health problem in the rehabilitation setting. Many risk factors for falls have been identified for stroke patients, such as muscle weakness, medication side effects, hypoglycemia, hypotension, etc.

Objectives: To assess the risk factors for falls among patients hospitalized for rehabilitation following acute stroke.

Methods:  In a retrospective study of 56 falls over a period of 5 years in 41 stroke patients hospitalized for rehabilitation we surveyed the nurses’ safety risk assessment of the fall. Thirty patients fell once, 9 patients twice and 2 patients four times. The data were obtained from the medical and nursing records. Safety precautions were taken by the nurses for the entire group of patients.

Results: Most of the falls occurred among male patients who had reduced muscular tone (70%), paralysis (54%) and/or hypoesthesia in the involved side of the body. Patients who suffered from hemiplegia fell more often than those with hemiparesis (Wilcoxon rank sum test, P = 0.04, one-sided). Forty-eight percent of the falls occurred during the first month after the last stroke onset, 70% during the morning or the afternoon, and 62% occurred close to the patient’s bed. In 89% of falls the patients used hypoglycemic, antihypertensive, tranquilizing or neuroleptic drugs. Communication disorders (29%), hemianopia or blindness (21%) and visuospatial agnosia (18%) were incremental risk factors for falls. Fifty percent of the falls were caused by either an intrinsic or extrinsic mechanism.

Conclusions: These data suggest that the group of stroke patients at risk for falls in a rehabilitation department can be identified by a variety of impairment and functional assessments. The information may be potentially useful for designing interventions directed at reducing fall frequency among stroke survivors.

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.

O. Waisbourd-Zinman, E. Bilavsky, N. Tirosh, Z. Samra and J. Amir

Background: Streptococcus pneumoniae is now the predominant pathogen causing meningitis. The resistance of S. pneumoniae to penicillin and third-generation cephalosporins has grown steadily.

Objectives: To assess the antibiotic susceptibility of S. pneumoniae isolated from the cerebrospinal fluid of children with meningitis, and determine the antibiotic regimen appropriate for suspected bacterial meningitis in Israel.

Methods:  The study group included 31 children with 35 episodes of meningitis hospitalized from 1998 to 2006. S. pneumoniae isolates from the cerebrospinal fluid were tested for susceptibility to penicillin and ceftriaxone.

Results: Of the 35 isolates, 17 (48.6%) showed resistance to penicillin (minimum inhibitory concentration ≥ 0.12 µg/ml). Only 3 isolates (8.6%) showed intermediate resistance to ceftriaxone (≥ 0.5 and < 2 μg/ml), and none showed complete resistance (MIC[1] ≥ 2 μg/ml). The rates of antibiotic resistance were higher in children who were treated with antibiotics prior to admission (penicillin 88.9% vs. 34.6%, P = 0.007; ceftriaxone 22.2% vs. 3.8%, P = 0.156).

Conclusions:  The rate of penicillin resistance is high in children with S. pneumoniae meningitis in Israel, especially in those treated with oral antibiotics prior to admission. Resistance to ceftriaxone is infrequent though not negligible. On the basis of these findings, current recommendations to empirically treat all children with suspected bacterial meningitis with ceftriaxone in addition to vancomycin until the bacterial susceptibility results become available are justified also in Israel.

[1] MIC = minimum inhibitory concentration

M. Cohen-Cymberknoh, D. Shoseyov, S. Goldberg, E. Gross, J. Amiel and E. Kerem

Pathological gambling is classified in the DSM-IV-TR (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders) and in the ICD-10 (International Classification of Disease) as an impulse control disorder. The association between impulsivity and pathological gambling remains a matter of debate: some researchers find high levels of impulsivity within pathological gamblers, others report no difference compared to controls, and yet others even suggest that it is lower. In this review we examine the relationship between pathological gambling and impulsivity assessed by various neurocognitive tests. These tests – the Stroop task, the Stop Signal Task, the Matching Familiar Figures Task, the Iowa Gambling Task, the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test, the Tower of London test, and the Continuous Performance Test – demonstrated less impulsivity in gambling behavior. The differences in performance between pathological gamblers and healthy controls on the neurocognitive tasks could be due to addictive behavior features rather than impulsive behavior.

Case Communications
M. Cohen-Cymberknoh, D. Shoseyov, S. Goldberg, E. Gross, J. Amiel and E. Kerem
M. Sokolov, D. Mendes and D. Ophir
G. Shalom, N. Sion-Vardy, J. Dudnik and S. Ariad
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