• IMA sites
  • IMAJ services
  • IMA journals
  • Follow us
  • Alternate Text Alternate Text
עמוד בית
Thu, 25.07.24

July 2015

Original Articles
Igor Jeroukhimov MD, Itai Zoarets MD, Itay Wiser MD, Zahar Shapira MD, Dov Abramovich MD, Vladimir Nesterenko MD and Ariel Halevy MD

Background: Trauma patients diagnosed with pancreatic duct injury (PDI) have a high complication rate and prolonged hospital stay. The role of endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) in the diagnosis of PDI remains unclear. During the last decade, our trauma unit incorporated ERCP into the management protocol for suspected PDI cases. 

Objectives: To determine whether ERCP is a sensitive tool to detect PDI. 

Methods: This retrospective trauma patient series study assessed the diagnostic yield of ERCP in trauma cases with suspected PDI on computed tomography (CT) or intraoperatively. Between 1 January 2004 and 31 December 2011, 13 patients admitted to our medical center underwent ERCP for suspected PDI. Patient demographics, mechanism of injury, Injury Severity Score (ISS), time from injury to ERCP, and ERCP-related complications were documented and assessed. 

Results: Of the 13 patients included in the analysis, 8 stable patients with suspected PDI on CT had no leak from the main pancreatic duct on ERCP. Two of them underwent surgery for suspected pancreatic transection. ERCP confirmed a main pancreatic duct leak in three patients. Two patients underwent ERCP for suspected PDI after “damage control” surgery. No leak from the pancreatic ducts was diagnosed. No pancreas-related complications or ERCP-related complications were observed.

Conclusions: ERCP is a sensitive and relatively safe tool for the diagnosis of PDI, and its use might prevent unnecessary surgical interventions in selected trauma cases.


Einat Fireman-Klein MD, Avraham Man MD, Yehuda Schwartz MD and Elizabeth Fireman PhD

Background: Determining the accuracy of interferon gamma-releasing assays (IGRAs) is difficult due to the lack of a gold standard test for diagnosing latent tuberculosis (LTB). 

Objectives: To analyze the guidelines used for interpreting IGRAs in determining prophylactic treatment management for latent tuberculosis (LTB) in Israel.

Methods: We analyzed the retrospective data of 367 subjects who were referred to our laboratory during the period 2007–2011 for QuantiFERON Test-Gold In Tube (QFT-GIT) tests because of suspected LTB. Demographics and clinical data were retrieved from a questionnaire at enrollment, and 166/367 (45%) were further interviewed by phone in order to complete follow-up information on prophylactic TB treatment. 

Results: The majority of subjects (116/166, 69.9%, P < 0.0001) were spared prophylactic treatment subsequent to QFT-GIT testing. Subjects with negative QFT-GIT and positive tuberculin skin test (TST) results who were BCG-vaccinated had the lowest treatment rates (6/68, 8.8%, P < 0.0001). Most BCG-vaccinated subjects with positive TST and negative QFT-GIT test results received treatment with anti-tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNFα) (17/19, 89.5%, P = 0.004). We found more negative QFT-GIT test results in subjects who were receiving anti-TNFα or steroid and other immunosuppressive treatment prior to testing (11/11, 100%, P = 0.029; 22/26, 84.6%, P = 0.06; 15/17, 88%, P = 0.06, respectively). 

Conclusions: Deciding on LTB prophylactic treatment in Israel is highly influenced by QFT-GIT test results. QFT-GIT findings contribute to clinical decisions, but their interpretation must also consider the patient’s medical history and clinical characteristics. 


Osnat Halshtok-Neiman MD, Anat Shalmon MD, Arie Rundetsein MD, Yael Servadio MD, Michael Gotleib MD and Miri Sklair-Levy MD

Breast magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has an important role in the detection and diagnosis of breast cancer. Suspicious findings on MRI are further evaluated with ultrasound. This case series illustrates the use of automated breast volumetric ultrasound (ABVS) as a tool for second-look ultrasound (SLUS) following MRI. Seven women underwent breast MRI with findings necessitating SLUS. ABVS was used for second look and all MRI lesions were detected. Four cancers, one fibroadenoma and two benign lesions, were diagnosed. This case series shows that ABVS can be used as a tool for SLUS following MRI and in some cases is superior to hand-held ultrasound.

Fadi Atrash MD, Orit Kaidar-Person MD and Salem Billan MD

Background: Anal cancer is a relatively uncommon disease, accounting for only 4% of cancers of the lower gastrointestinal tract. 

Objectives: To summarize the single-center experience in the treatment of anal carcinoma using various radiation techniques.

Methods: We conducted a retrospective chart review of consecutive patients who were treated for anal cancer between the years 2002 and 2011. The data extracted included demographics, type of radiation technique, treatment-associated acute toxicity, and patterns of failure and survival. For statistical analysis purposes, the patients were divided into two groups according to radiotherapy technique: 2D (group A) and 3D (group B).

Results: A total of 42 patients – 25 (59.5%) females and 17 males (40.5%) – underwent definitive chemo-radiation treatment (CRT) for anal cancer. Group A comprised 26 patients and group B 14 patients. Toxicity did not differ significantly between the groups, only in grade 1-2 skin toxicity which was more common in group B. There were significant differences in the unplanned interruptions in treatment, in both the number of patients who needed a treatment break and the number of days needed (more in group A). There were no differences in treatment response and patterns of failure between these two techniques, or in overall survival between the two groups. 

Conclusions: Our study results are consistent with reported large randomized trials, indicating that current treatments for anal carcinomas are associated with high grade acute toxicity that may result in significant treatment interruptions. The 2D technique was associated with significantly more treatment interruptions, but did not differ from 3D with regard to treatment efficacy. 


Tamar Brufman MD, Ronen Ben-Ami MD, Michal Mizrahi MD, Edna Bash MSc and Yael Paran MD

Background: Mycetoma is a chronic and destructive infection caused by either fungus or bacteria. Mycetoma has a characteristic clinical presentation of a triad of tumor-like swelling, draining sinuses, and macroscopic grains. Mycetoma infection is extremely rare in Israel; however, in view of the recent immigration from mycetoma-hyperendemic regions of Africa to Israel, physicians in Israel may encounter this infection.

Objectives: To present two cases of mycetoma caused by Madurella mycatomatis in immigrants from endemic regions in Sudan treated at our hospital, and review the current literature. 

Conclusions: Health care professionals in Israel should suspect mycetoma in patients from endemic countries who present with tumor-like swelling especially in the lower extremity. Health care workers should be able to recognize mycetoma and provide the optimal treatment before the lesion progresses to an advanced and disabling disease. 


Oded Breuer MD, David Shoseyov MD, Eitan Kerem MD and Rebecca Brooks MD

Background: Treatment using inhaled bronchodilators for asthma with a metered dose inhaler attached to a spacer device (MDI+S) was shown to be as efficient as nebulizers. Nevertheless, nebulizers remain the treatment of choice in most hospitals. 

Objectives: To implement a policy change to improve asthma treatment in pediatric wards and the pediatric emergency department.

Methods: The study was performed in the emergency department and pediatric wards of a university medical center. The study group comprised all children admitted with a diagnosis of asthma necessitating treatment. The medical and nursing staff of both the pediatric emergency department and the pediatric wards was trained how to use metered dose inhalers attached to spacers on a regular basis in asthmatic pediatric patients. At a preset date nebulizers were replaced by spacers and their use was monitored by the supervising physician. Salbutamol was administered by metered dose inhaler (100 μg/puff) attached to a spacer device. The number of puffs was determined by severity of disease according to GINA recommendations. After 2 years the outcome and cost analysis were examined.

Results: During 3 years since the initial policy change 92.5% patients were treated with spacers throughout their hospital stay (emergency department and pediatric ward). Costs were reduced by an estimated 63%. 

Conclusions: In view of its many advantages the replacement of nebulizers by MDI+S for the treatment of acute asthma is feasible, if performed in collaboration with the staff, hospital authority and patients.


Andreas E. Buchs MD, Michal Braverman MD and Micha J. Rapoport MD

Background: Admission glucose levels correlate with clinical outcome in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) hospitalized in general medicine wards. 

Objective: To investigate whether in-hospital hyperglycemia alone and after adjustment for age, gender and lipidemia correlates with in- and out-of-hospital mortality.

Methods: Capillary glucose, serum lipids and diagnoses at discharge among patients with T2DM hospitalized in the general medical wards of our hospital were documented. Correlation with in- and out-of-hospital mortality was determined through uni- and multivariate analyses. 

Results: Of the 4607 patients included in the study 22% died while hospitalized. From a median of five capillary glucose tests obtained per patient, average capillary glucose level was significantly lower in those who survived than in those who died (174 ± 64 vs. 180 ± 65 mg/dl, P = 0.005). Overall, blood cholesterol was higher in those who survived than in those who died (P < 0.001). Multivariate analysis, however, including age, gender, lipidemia and glycemia, showed that only age and male gender correlated with mortality.

Conclusions: Hyperglycemia was associated with increased in- and out-of-hospital mortality on univariate analysis. However, it was not an independent risk factor when corrected for age, gender and hyperlipidemia. 


Michael Papiashvili MD, Ehud Deviri MD, Ilan Bar MD and Lior Sasson MD

Background: The efficacy of video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery lobectomy in patients with previous coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) surgery is controversial.

Objectives: To investigate whether skeletonized left internal mammary artery (LIMA) mobilization contributes to the development of severe adhesions, which will affect what type of lung surgery (open or closed procedure) will be required in the future.

Methods: Eight patients (mean age 73.9 years) with previous CABG surgery using a LIMA to left anterior descending (LAD) graft underwent left-sided lobectomy for operable non-small cell lung carcinoma. 

Results: The lobectomy by thoracotomy rate was 62.5% (5 patients), generally in patients with tumors in the left upper lobe or in patients post-neoadjuvant chemotherapy, while the video-assisted thoracic surgery lobectomy rate was 37.5% (3 patients). Mean hospital stay was 8.3 days. There was no mortality or major morbidity, apart from six minor complications in four patients (50%) (air leak, atrial fibrillation, atelectasis, pneumonia). 

Conclusions: Patients with operable non-small cell lung carcinoma following CABG surgery who need left upper lobe resection do not benefit from the video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery technique due to significant adhesions between the LIMA to LAD graft and the lung. The method of preserving a small portion of the lung on the LIMA to LAD graft may help during left upper lobe resections. Adhesions in the left pleural space after LIMA mobilization appear to generally minimally affect left lower lobe video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery.


David Kesari MD, Jonathan Benjamin MD, Anna Podberezsky MD, Evgeny Yulish MD, Leonid Lobik MD, Dmitri Sumalinsky MD and Shmuel Cytron

Background: Benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH) is a common age-dependent urological condition that can disrupt quality of life if the patient's treatment choice is inappropriate. 

Objectives: To examine whether patients’ demography and personality affect their decision regarding the type of treatment: namely, conservative or surgical. 

Methods: A total of 105 BPH patients treated during the period 2005–2008 were retrospectively categorized into three groups according to treatment received: (i) medication only (n=056), (ii) combined treatment (the initial medication treatment was switched to surgical treatment) (n=32), and (iii) surgery only (n=17). A prerequisite for inclusion in the study was use of BPH medication for at least half a year before the study (groups 1 and 2). These groups completed the International Prostate Symptom Score (IPSS) questionnaire at the start of BPH medical treatment (IPSS 1) and at the start of the trial (IPSS 2), and the staff calculated the difference (IPSS 1-IPSS 2 = Delta IPSS = DIPSS).  All three groups provided demographic data (age, country of origin, education) and completed tri-dimensional personality questionnaires (TPQ) to measure three independent "temperament" personality dimensions to evaluate how different individuals feel or behave: novel seeking (NS), harm avoidance (HA), and reward dependence (RD). Data were analyzed using chi-square, t-test, one-way ANOVA and logistic regression.

Results: Demographic variables and the RD dimension differed according to choice of BPH treatment. 

Conclusions: Our study suggests that symptomatic BPH treatment is influenced less by the patient's personality and more by his life circumstances. Israeli-born patients were more conservative, Russian-born patients were ambivalent, and other foreign-born patients predominantly preferred surgical treatment. We assume that personality has a more decisive effect on patients with malignant disease and they accept the medical advice more easily. 


Tanya Ebert MD, Yuval Zolotov MHA, Shani Eliav RN, Orit Ginzburg RN, Irena Shapira RN and Racheli Magnezi PhD MBA

Background: Cannabis has been used throughout history for different purposes but was outlawed in the United States in 1937 followed by most countries. Although recently reintroduced as a medical treatment in several countries, the use of cannabis in Israel is permitted for some medical purposes but is still controversial, eliciting heated public and professional debate. The few published studies on physicians' attitudes to medical cannabis found them to be generally unsupportive. 

Objectives: To examine, for the first time, the experience, knowledge and attitudes of Israeli physicians towards medical cannabis (MC). 

Methods: A 32 item questionnaire reflected physicians' demographics, knowledge of and experience with MC and their attitudes to this treatment. 

Results: Seventy-two physicians participated in this study. Physicians generally agreed that MC treatment could be helpful for chronic and for terminally ill patients (n=61, 79.2%). Oncologists and pain specialists did not agree unanimously that MC can undermine mental health, whereas other physicians did (P < 0.001, df = 4). Physicians who recommended MC in the past (once or more) agreed more than physicians who did not with the statement "MC treatment in Israel is accessible to patients who need it" (P < 0.05, df = 2). 

Conclusions: In contrast to other studies we found partial acceptance of MC as a therapeutic agent. Further in-depth studies are needed to address regulatory and educational needs.


Eli Schwartz MD DTMH and Adiel Shpiro BA
Nili Greenberg MSc, Rafael Carel MD and Boris A. Portnov PhD DSc

Studies of the respiratory effects of air pollution in Israel published in peer-reviewed journals have been infrequent. Most empiric evidence relates to the association between air pollution and childhood asthma; other air pollution effects on other illnesses are less thoroughly studied. Our evaluation provides a possible explanation for the quite contradictory results demonstrated in the various studies. Actual effect estimates appear to differ considerably, ranging from no air pollution effect to a reasonably strong association detected between PM10 and asthma. We attribute these discrepancies to different research methodologies and different types of data used in various studies.

Case Communications
Mauro Calvani MD, Valentino Giorgio MD, Monica Greco MD and Stefano Miceli Sopo MD
Marina Leitman MD, Laurian Copel MD, Simcha Rosenblatt MD, Josef Gurevich MD and Zvi Vered MD FACC FESC
Smadar Eventov-Friedman MD PhD, Ayala Frumkin PhD, Benjamin Bar-Oz MD and Annick Raas-Rothschild MD
Legal Disclaimer: The information contained in this website is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as legal or medical advice on any matter.
The IMA is not responsible for and expressly disclaims liability for damages of any kind arising from the use of or reliance on information contained within the site.
© All rights to information on this site are reserved and are the property of the Israeli Medical Association. Privacy policy

2 Twin Towers, 35 Jabotinsky, POB 4292, Ramat Gan 5251108 Israel