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עמוד בית
Sat, 28.11.20

November 2010

Original Articles
O. Vinitsky, L. Ore, H. Habiballa and M. Cohen Dar

Background: The incidence of cutaneous leishmaniasis in northern Israel began to rise in 2000, peaking at 41.0 per 100,000 in the Kinneret subdistrict during the first half of 2003.

Objectives: To examine the morbidity rates of CL[1] in northern Israel during the period 1999–2003, which would indicate whether new endemic areas were emerging in this district, and to identify suspicious hosts.

Methods: The demographic and epidemiologic data for the reported cases (n=93) were analyzed using the GIS and SPSS software, including mapping habitats of suspicious hosts and localizing sites of infected sand flies.

Results: The maximal incidence rate in the district was found in the city Tiberias in 2003: 62.5/100,000 compared to 0–1.5/100,000 in other towns. The cases in Tiberias were centered on the peripheral line of two neighborhoods, close to the habitats of the rock hyraxes. Sand flies infected with Leishmania tropica were captured around the residence of those affected. Results of polymerase chain reaction were positive for Leishmania tropica in 14 of 15 tested patients.

Conclusions: A new endemic CL area has emerged in Tiberias. The most suspicious reservoir of the disease is the rock hyrax.

[1] CL = cutaneous leishmaniasis

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.

E. Atar, R. Kornowski and GN.. Bachar

Background: Coronary CT angiography is an accurate imaging modality; however, its main drawback is the radiation dose. A new technology, the "step and shoot," which reduces the radiation up to one-eighth, is now available.

Objectives: To assess our initial experience using the "step-and-shoot" technology for various vascular pathologies.

Methods: During a 10 month period 125 consecutive asymptomatic patients (111 men and 14 women aged 25–82, average age 54.9 years) with various clinical indications that were appropriate for step-and-shoot CCTA[1] (regular heart rate < 65 beats/minute and body weight < 115 kg) were scanned with a 64-slice multidetector computed tomography Brilliance scanner (Philips, USA). The preparation protocol for the scan was the same as for the regular coronary CTA. All examinations were interpreted by at least one experienced radiologist and one experienced interventional cardiologist. The quality of the examinations was graded from 1 (excellent imaging quality of all coronary segments) to 4 (poor quality, not diagnostic). There were 99 patients without a history of coronary intervention, 13 after coronary stent deployment (19 stents), and 3 after coronary artery bypass graft.

Results: Coronary interpretation was obtained in 122 examinations (97.6%). The imaging quality obtained was as follows: 103 patients scored 1 (82.4%), 15 scored 2 (12%), 4 scored 3 (3.2%) and 3 scored 4 (2.4%). The grades were unrelated to cardiac history or type of previous examinations. Poor image quality occurred because of sudden heart rate acceleration during the scan (one patient), movement and respiration (one patient), and arrhythmia and bad scan timing (in one). Two patients were referred to percutaneous coronary intervention based on the CCTA findings, which correlated perfectly.

Conclusions: Step-and-shoot CCTA is a reliable technique and CCTA algorithm comparable to the regular CCTA. This technique requires the lowest radiation dose, as compared to other coronary imaging modalities, that can be used for all CCTA indications based on the inclusion criteria of low (> 65 bpm) and stable heart rate.

[1] CCTA = coronary computed tomography angiography

I. Marai, M. Suleiman, M. Blich, T. Zeidan-Shwiri, L. Gepstien and M. Boulos

Background: For patients with ventricular tachyarrhythmias, implantable cardioverter defibrillators are a mainstay of therapy to prevent sudden death. However, ICD[1] shocks are painful, can result in clinical depression, and do not offer complete protection against death from arrhythmia. Radiofrequency catheter ablation of ventricular tachycardia in the setting of ischemic cardiomyopathy has emerged recently as a useful adjunctive therapy to ICD.

Objectives: To assess the feasibility, safety and efficacy of our initial experience in ablation of scar-related VT[2].

Methods: Eleven patients (all males, mean age 71 ± 8 years) with drug-refractory ischemic VT were referred to our center for scar mapping and ablation procedures using the CARTO navigation system.

Results: Eleven clinical VTs (mean cycle length 436 ± 93 ms) were induced in all patients. An endocardial circuit, identified by activation, entrainment and/or pace mapping, was found in eight patients with stable VT. These patients were mapped and ablated during VT. Three patients had predominantly unstable VT and linear ablation lesions were performed during sinus rhythm. Acute success, defined as termination of VT and or non-inducibility during programmed electrical stimulation, was found in 9 patients (82%). During follow-up, a significant reduction in tachyarrythmia burden was observed in all patients who had successful initial ablation, except for one who had recurrence of VT 2 days after the procedure and died 2 weeks later.

Conclusions: Ablation of ischemic VT using electroanatomic scar mapping is feasible, has an acceptable success rate and should be offered for ischemic patients with recurrent uncontrolled VT.

[1] ICD = implantable cardioverter defibrillator

[2] VT = ventricular tachycardia

S.D Israeli-Korn, Y. Schwammenthal, T. Yonash-Kimchi, M. Bakon, R. Tsabari, D. Orion, B. Bruk, N. Molshatzki, O. Merzeliak, J. Chapman and D. Tanne

Background: Multiple case series, mostly highly selected, have demonstrated a very high mortality following acute basilar artery occlusion. The more widespread availability and use of non-invasive vascular imaging over recent years has increased the rate of ABAO[1] diagnosis.

Objectives: To estimate the proportion of diagnosed ABAO among all-cause ischemic stroke in an era of increasing use of non-invasive vascular imaging and to compare the characteristics and outcomes between these two groups.

Methods: We compared 27 consecutive cases of ABAO identified in a university hospital between 2003 and 2007 to 311 unselected cases of ischemic stroke from two 4 month surveys.

Results: ABAO diagnosis increased from 0.3% of all-cause ischemic stroke (2003–2004) to 1.1% (2007), reflecting the increased use of non-invasive vascular imaging. In comparison to all-cause ischemic stroke, ABAO patients were younger (mean age 60 vs. 71 years), were more likely to be male (89% vs. 60%), had less atrial fibrillation (7% vs. 26%), more severe strokes (baseline NIHSS over 20: 52% vs. 12%), higher admission white cell count (12,000 vs. 9000 cells/mm3) lower admission systolic blood pressure (140 ± 24 vs. 153 ± 27 mmHg), higher in-hospital mortality rates (30% vs. 8%) and worse functional outcome (modified Rankin scale ≤ 3, 22% vs. 56%) (P < 0.05 for all). Rates of reperfusion therapy for ABAO increased from 0 in 2003–2004 to 60% in 2007.

Conclusions: In this study, ABAO patients represented approximately 1% of all-cause ischemic stroke and were about a decade younger than patients with all-cause ischemic stroke. We report a lower ABAO mortality compared to previous more selected case series; however, most survivors had a poor functional outcome. Given the marked clinical heterogeneity of ABAO, a low threshold for non-invasive vascular imaging with a view to definitive reperfusion treatment is needed.

[1] ABAO = acute basilar artery occlusion

S. Hudara, F. Mimouni, Y. Rachman, B. Dayan, A. Silbermintz and D. Turner

Background: Optimil® is an infant formula, manufactured in Israel and introduced to the market in May 2008.

Objectives: To assess, for the first time, the effect of this formula on infant growth.

Method: The study group comprised 52 infants who for the first 6 months of life consumed Optimil, which constituted at least 25% of their total daily intake. Anthropometric data were collected from the records of the well-baby clinics. Weight, length and head circumference at baseline and 3 months thereafter were converted to gender and age-matched standard deviation Z-scores. As an exploratory uncontrolled analysis, questionnaires were sent to the caregivers to assess satisfaction with the formula and to note the rate of constipation, irritability and vomiting as well as apparent palatability.

Results: The baseline Z-scores of all three parameters were below zero but increased significantly after 3 months (-0.2 ± 0.88 to 0.12 ± 0.88, P = 0.013 for weight; -0.44 ± 0.87 to 0.10 ± 0.72, P < 0.001 for length; and -0.58 ± 0.78 to -0.1 ± 0.76, P < 0.001 for head circumference). There was a significant dose-response effect of the formula with weight gain. The formula was generally well accepted, with 8% constipation, 8% vomiting and 6% significant irritability.

Conclusions: This study provides the first evidence that infants consuming Optimil under age 6 months have adequate growth. Nonetheless, breastfeeding during this period should be preferred in almost all cases.

U. Katzenell, E. Bakshi, I. Ashkenazi, Y. Bar-Dayan, E. Yeheskeli and E. Eviatar

Background: The criteria for tonsillectomy for recurrent tonsillitis were established by prospective studies in the pediatric population and are applied to adults as well. No studies have been conducted to assess whether these guidelines are followed. 

Objectives: To examine the eligibility for tonsillectomy of tonsillectomized patients who were referred because of recurrent acute tonsillitis.

Methods: A retrospective case series in an ambulatory military otolaryngology clinic was conducted, and the medical records of 44 tonsillectomized patients who suffered from throat infections in the year before surgery were analyzed. The number of tonsillar infections that met the referral criteria was counted.

Results: The average number of throat infections that met the referral criteria was 1.89 per year. The average number of visits to the clinic due to upper respiratory tract infection was 12.92 (range 2–36) per year. The average number of visits for any cause was 45.13 (range 6–64) per year. One patient with eight documented throat infections met the criteria of more than six infections in the last year.

Conclusion: Although the referral criteria were not strictly met, we speculate that surgery was probably beneficial. This study shows that the indications for tonsillectomy referral are not strictly followed, and that new criteria for referral of adults for tonsillectomy need to be established.

N. Nachmias, Y. Landman, Y.L. Danon and Y. Levy

Background: Feeding neonates with humanized milk formula in maternity hospitals may increase the prevalence of milk allergy in infants. However, prospective studies of the possible allergenic effect of very early soy-based formula feeding are lacking.

Objectives: To assess the prevalence of soy allergy in infants fed soy-based formula in the first 3 days of life.

Methods: The study group included 982 healthy full-term infants born within a 7 month period at a hospital that routinely uses soy-based formula to supplement breastfeeding. In-hospital feeding was recorded and the parents were interviewed once monthly over the next 6 months regarding feeding practices and clinical symptoms suggesting soy allergy in the infant.

Results: Ninety-nine percent of the infants received soy-based formula supplement in hospital, and 33–42% at home. No cases of immediate allergic reaction to soy or soy-induced enterocolitis were reported.

Conclusions: The use of soy-based formula in the early neonatal period does not apparently increase the prevalence of soy allergy in infants followed for the next 6 months.

Y. Goykhman, M. Ben-Haim, G. Rosen, M. Carmiel-Haggai, R. Oren, R. Nakache, O. Szold, J. Klausner and I. Kori

Background: Inserting a transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt by means of interventional radiology has become the procedure of choice for decompression of portal hypertension. The indications and criteria for patient selection have been expanded and refined accordingly.

Objectives: To review our experience with TIPS[1] and analyze the results with emphasis on patient selection and indication (conventional vs. atypical).

Methods: In this retrospective analysis in a single center all cases were managed by a multidisciplinary team (comprising liver surgery and transplantation, hepatology, imaging, interventional radiology and intensive care).

Results: Between August 2003 and December 2009, 34 patients (mean age 51, range 27–76 years) were treated with TIPS. The cause of portal hypertension was cirrhosis (23 cases), hypercoagulabilty complicated by Budd-Chiari syndrome (n=6), and acute portal vein thrombosis (n=5). Clinical indications for TIPS included treatment or secondary prevention of variceal bleeding (10 cases), refractory ascites (n=18), mesenteric ischemia due to acute portal vein thrombosis (n=5), and acute liver failure (n=1). TIPS was urgent in 18 cases (53%) and elective in 16. Three deaths occurred following urgent TIPS. The overall related complication rate was 32%: transient encephalopathy (6 cases), ischemic hepatitis (n=2), acute renal failure (n=2) and bleeding (n=1). Long-term results of TIPS were defined as good in 25 cases (73%), fair in 4 (12%) and failure in 5 (15%). In three of five patients with mesenteric ischemia following acute portal vein thrombosis, surgery was obviated. Revision of TIPS due to stenosis or thrombosis was needed in 7 cases (20%).

Conclusions: TIPS is safe and effective. While its benefit for patients with portal hypertension is clear, the role of TIPS in treatment of portal-mesenteric venous thrombosis needs further evaluation. Patient selection, establishing the indication and performing TIPS should be done by a multidisciplinary dedicated team.

[1] TIPS = transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt

A. Finkelstein, S. Schwartzenberg, L. Bar, Y. Levy, A. Halkin, I. Herz, S. Bazan, R. Massachi, S. Banai, G. Keren and J. George

Background: ST-elevation myocardial infarction is caused by occlusive coronary thrombosis where antecedent plaque disruption occurs. When treating STEMI[1] the main goal is to achieve prompt reperfusion of the infarction area. Several studies have demonstrated the efficacy of an aspiration device before percutaneous coronary intervention in patients with acute myocardial infarction.

Objectives: To determine the added value of thrombus aspiration prior to primary PCI[2] by comparing AMI[3] patients with totally occluded infarct-related artery treated with routine primary PCI to those treated with extraction device prior to primary PCI.

Methods: The study group comprised 122 consecutive patients with AMI and a totally occluded infarct artery (TIMI flow 0) who underwent primary PCI. The patients were divided into two groups: 68 who underwent primary PCI only (control group) and 54 who underwent primary thrombus extraction with an extraction device before PCI (extraction group). Baseline clinical and lesion characteristics were similar in both groups. Final TIMI grade flow and myocardial blush as well as 1 year mortality, target lesion revascularization, recurrent myocardial infarction, unstable angina and stroke were compared between the two groups.

Results: Primary angiographic results were better for the extraction group versus the control group: final grade 3 TIMI flow was 100% vs. 95.6% (P = 0.03) and final grade 3 myocardial blush grade 50% vs. 41.18% (although P was not significant). Long-term follow-up total MACE[4] showed a non-significant positive trend in the extraction group (12.96% vs. 24.71%, P = 0.26).

Conclusions: The use of extraction devices for intracoronary thrombectomy during primary PCI in patients with totally occluded infarct artery significantly improved epicardial reperfusion in the infarct-related vessel and showed a trend for more favorable long-term outcome.

[1] STEMI = ST-elevation myocardial infarction

[2] PCI = percutaneous coronary intervention

[3] AMI = acute myocardial infarction

[4] MACE = major adverse cardiac event

B. Chikman, R. Lavy, T. Davidson, I. Wassermann, J. Sandbank, N. Siegelmann-Danieli and A. Halevy

Background: Infiltrating ductal carcinoma and infiltrating lobular carcinoma account for more than 90% of all invasive breast cancer histological types. The rate of ILC[1] is reported to be increasing steadily in the United States and Europe.

Objectives: To describe the trend in the incidence of ILC in a large cohort of patients who underwent surgery in a single institution over an 18 year period.

Methods: Our comprehensive database of 2175 consecutive patients with invasive breast cancer diagnosed during the period 1992–2009 served for the analysis. Several potential factors associated with lobular carcinoma as compared with ductal carcinoma were evaluated.

Results: During this period, a 2.4-fold increase in the incidence of pure ILC was noted, from 4.6% in the years 1992–1994 to 10.9% in 2004–2006, followed by a modest decrease to 8.7% in 2007–2009. A significant association of lobular malignancies with external hormonal use was noted, including hormone replacement therapy exposure in patients diagnosed at age 50–64, and ovarian overstimulation during in vitro fertilization in those diagnosed at age 50 or less.  

Conclusions: Better diagnostic tools – such as the liberal use of ultrasound and magnetic resonance imaging – and more accurate pathological definition for ILC type appear to influence the changes in the incidence of ILC in the subgroups of invasive breast cancer.

[1] ILC = infiltrating lobular carcinoma

A. Bass, S. Viesgarten, E. Heldenberg; C.G. Miller
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