Pnina Shitrit MD, Michal Openhaim MD, Sharon Reisfeld MD, Yossi Paitan PhD, Gili Regev-Yochay MD, Yehuda Carmeli MD and Michal Chowers MD
Background: Isolation of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in healthy individuals is not common in Israel. In our hospital, about 30% of MRSA isolates were SCCmec types IV and V.
Objectives: To identify the demographic and clinical characteristics of patients carrying MRSA SCCmec type IV or V, and to compare them with each other and with those of patients with SCCmec types I-III.
Methods: We conducted a case-control study that included 501 patients from whom MRSA was isolated: 254 with SCCmec type I, II, or III, and 243 isolates from SCCmec types IV or V.
Results: MRSA was isolated from surveillance cultures in 75% of patients and from a clinical site in 25%. The majority of our study population was elderly, from nursing homes, and with extensive exposure to health care. First, we compared characteristics of patients identified through screening. Statistically significant predictors of SCCmec V vs. IV were Arab ethnicity (OR 7.44, 95%CI 1.5–37.9) and hospitalization in the year prior to study inclusion (OR 5.7, 95%CI 1.9–16.9). No differences were found between patients with SCCmec types I-III and patients with SCCmec type IV or V. Analysis of the subset of patients who had clinical cultures yielded similar results.
Conclusions: SCCmec types IV and V were common in the hospital setting although rare in the community. It seems that in Israel, SCCmec IV and V are predominantly health care-associated MRSA.
Keren Mahlab-Guri MD, Ilan Asher MD, Tanir Allweis MD, Judith Diment MD, Zev M. Sthoeger MD and Eliezer Mavor MD
Background: Granulomatous lobular mastitis (GLM) is a rare disorder that can clinically mimic breast carcinoma. The recommendation for diagnosis and treatment of GLM has not yet been established.
Objectives: To assess a series of GLM patients, including their clinical presentation, diagnosis, treatment and outcome.
Methods: We retrospectively analyzed the clinical data and treatment of 17 female patients with biopsy-proven GLM. Breast tissue was obtained by a core needle biopsy (15 patients) or open biopsy (2 patients). Images were reviewed by an experienced radiologist.
Results: The mean age of the patients at diagnosis was 44.6 ± 12.6 years. Five patients (29%) presented with bilateral disease, and seven (41%) presented with a mass, suggesting the initial diagnosis of breast carcinoma. Treatment comprised observation alone (23%), antibiotics (58.8%) and/or corticosteroids (with or without methotrexate) (35%). At the end of the study 70.6% of the patients demonstrated complete remission. None of the patients developed any systemic (granulomatous) disease or breast carcinoma during the follow-up period (4.7 ± 3.8 years).
Conclusions: Core needle biopsy is mandatory for the diagnosis of GLM and the exclusion of breast carcinoma. The recommended treatment modalities are observation alone or corticosteroids; surgery should be avoided. GLM is a benign disease with a high rate of resolution and complete remission.
Lutfi Jaber MD, Dafna Kirsh MD, Gary Diamond MD FAAP and Avinoam Shuper MD
Background: Childhood attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a chronic health problem with significant risk for long-term morbidity in adulthood.
Objectives: We examined long-term outcomes of ADHD in a population-based sample of childhood ADHD cases prospectively assessed as adults.
Methods: Long-term outcomes for 70 adults who were diagnosed with ADHD during childhood were examined and compared with data on the general population.
Results: Most subjects admitted to persistence of ADHD-related symptoms in adulthood, despite discontinuation of regular medical treatment and follow-up. Areas most severely affected by past and ongoing symptoms included driving performance and incidence of motor vehicle accidents, and rates of marriage stability over time. Relatively unaffected were occupational and academic achievements and military service.
Conclusions: There is a need for outreach and better services for adults who were previously diagnosed with ADHD.
Jeffrey Shames MD MPH, Shimon Weitzman MD MPH, Yael Nechemya MD and Avi Porath MD MPH
Background: Stroke is a leading cause of death and disability worldwide. The risk factors for stroke overlap those for cardiovascular disease. Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a particularly strong risk factor and is common, particularly in the elderly. Maccabi Healthcare Services (MHS) has maintained a vascular registry of clinical information for over 100,000 members, among them patients with heart disease and stroke.
Objectives: To determine the prevalence of stroke in MHS, and whether the association of AF and stroke, along with other risk factors, in the Maccabi population is similar to that in published studies.
Methods: Data on stroke and AF patients aged 45 and older were collected from the database for the year 2010, including age, previous transient ischemic attack (TIA), body mass index (BMI), prior myocardial infarction (MI), diabetes, hypertension, anticoagulation and dyslipidemia. A cross-sectional analysis was used to estimate stroke prevalence by AF status. A case-control analysis was also performed comparing a sample of stroke and non-stroke patients. This permitted estimation of the strength of associations for atrial fibrillation and various other combinations of risk factors with stroke.
Results: Stroke prevalence ranged from 3.5 (females, age 45–54 years) to 74.1 (males, age 85+) per thousand in non-AF members, and from 29 (males, age 45–54) to 165 (males, age 85+) per thousand for patients with AF. AF patients had significantly more strokes than non-AF patients in all age groups. Stroke prevalence increased with age and was significantly higher in males. Multivariable analysis revealed that male gender, increasing age, AF, hypertension, diabetes, and history of TIA were highly significant risk factors for stroke. In addition, for males, dyslipidemia and prior MI were moderately strong risk factors.
Conclusions: Analysis of the MHS vascular database yielded useful information on stroke prevalence and association of known risk factors with stroke, which is consistent with the epidemiological literature elsewhere. Further analysis of health fund data could potentially provide useful information in the future.
Rafael S. Carel MD DrPH, Inna Brodsky MPH and Giora Pillar MD MPH
Background: Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a common health problem with an estimated prevalence of 4% among men, many of whom are undiagnosed and untreated.
Objectives: To compare demographic characteristics, health profiles, risk factors, and disease severity in Arab and Jewish men with OSA syndrome.
Methods: In this cross-sectional study we retrospectively analyzed clinical data from the medical files of men ≥ 22 years old who were referred to the Rambam Medical Center sleep clinic during the period 2001–2009 with a suspected diagnosis of OSA. OSA severity was measured using the apnea-hypopnea index (AHI). Categorical variables were compared using the chi-square test. Relations between OSA severity and a set of independent risk factors were assessed by linear regression analysis.
Results: A total of 207 men were included (39 Arabs, 19%; 168 Jews, 81%). Arab participants were younger than their Jewish counterparts (45.5 ± 8.9 years vs. 49.8 ± 11.8, P = 0.04) and their body mass index (BMI) was higher (33.1 ± 5.1 vs. 30.0 ± 4.4, P = 0.001). OSA severity (AHI score) was higher among Arab men, with low, medium and high severity scores seen in 10%, 33% and 56% of Arab men vs 35%, 29% and 37% of Jewish men, respectively [T(198)=2.39, P = 0.02]. Mean blood oxygen saturation was comparable.
Conclusions: Arab men presenting for evaluation of sleep apnea harbored more severe OSA symptoms, were younger, and had higher BMI compared to Jewish men. Since OSA syndrome evolves for several years until it becomes severe, these findings suggest that Arab men seek medical assistance later than Jewish men with OSA.
Shimon Izhakian MD and Andreas E. Buchs MD
Background: In Israel, where the "Do not resuscitate code" and "advanced directives" are not yet universally practiced, physicians are frequently ‘forced’ to mechanically ventilate patients despite an upfront unfavorable prognosis. Due to the shortage of intensive care unit (ICU) beds, patients are mostly hospitalized in general medicine wards.
Objectives: To differentiate between patients with particularly grim prognoses and those with good prognoses, in order to inform the potential decision-making process regarding whether or not to offer aggressive medical care.
Methods: This retrospective study included all mechanically ventilated patients hospitalized exclusively in one of the six general internal medicine wards at the Assaf Harofeh Medical Center during 2009–2010. Demographic and ventilation-related data, laboratory values and main medical diagnoses were correlated to in-hospital mortality.
Results: The study group comprised 437 patients with a median age of 83 years. Mortality was 72%. Initiation of mechanical ventilation out of the hospital or in the emergency room improved outcome. Age, anemia, leukocytosis and renal failure correlated negatively to outcome. In-hospital mortality was 80% in patients after in-hospital resuscitation, 90% in patients ventilated due to infections, but 50% in patients ventilated for cardiac or respiratory failure.
Conclusions: The prognosis of mechanically ventilated patients can be foreseen, which could help in deciding whether aggressive life support would be in the interest of the patient.
Yaron Arbel MD, Assi Milwidsky MD, Ariel Finkelstein MD, Amir Halkin MD, Miri Revivo MHA, Shlomo Berliner MD PhD, Martin Ellis MD, Itzhak Herz MD, Gad Keren MD and Shmuel Banai MD
Background: Anemia confers an adverse prognosis in patients with ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI). Several mechanisms have been implicated in the etiology of anemia in this setting, including inflammation, blood loss, and the presence of comorbidities such as renal failure.
Objectives: To evaluate the adequacy of bone marrow response as potentially reflected by elevation in blood and reticulocyte counts.
Methods: Consecutive men with STEMI who underwent primary percutaneous intervention within 6 hours of symptom onset and who presented to our catheterization laboratory during a 36 month period were included in the study. The cohort was divided into quartiles according to hemoglobin concentration, and differences in clinical and laboratory characteristics between the groups were evaluated.
Results: A total of 258 men with STEMI were recruited, 22% of whom suffered from anemia according to the World Health Organization classification (hemoglobin < 13 g/dl). Men in the lowest quartile of hemoglobin concentration presented with significantly lower white blood cell and platelet counts (9.6 ± 2.9 vs. 12.6 ± 3.6 x103/µl, P < 0.001) and (231 ± 79 vs. 263 ± 8 x103/µl, P < 0.01), respectively, despite higher inflammatory biomarkers (C-reactive protein and fibrinogen) compared with patients in the upper hemoglobin concentration quartile. Reticulocyte production index was not significantly higher in anemic patients with a value of 1.8, 1.4, 1.5 and 1.6 in the ascending hemoglobin quartiles, respectively (P = 0.292).
Conclusions: Anemic men with STEMI have relatively lower leukocyte and platelet counts as well as a reduced reticulocyte count despite higher inflammatory biomarkers. These findings might suggest inadequate bone marrow response.
Guy Topaz MD, Moti Haim MD, Jairo Kusniec MD, Shirit Kazum MD, Gustavo Goldenberg MD, Gregory Golovchiner MD, Ran Kornowski MD, Boris Strasberg MD and Alon Eisen MD
Background: Cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT) is a non-pharmacological option for patients with heart failure and interventricular dyssynchrony. Elevated red cell distribution width (RDW) reflects higher size and heterogeneity of erythrocytes and is associated with poor outcome in patients with chronic heart failure.
Objectives: To examine the association between RDW levels and outcomes after CRT implantation.
Methods: We conducted a cohort analysis of 156 patients (126 men, median age 69.0 years) who underwent CRT implantation in our institution during 2004–2008. RDW was measured at three time points before and after implantation. Primary outcome was defined as all-cause mortality, and secondary outcome as hospital re-admissions. We investigated the association between RDW levels and primary outcome during a median follow-up of 61 months.
Results: Ninety-five patients (60.9%) died during follow-up. Higher baseline RDW levels were associated with all-cause mortality (unadjusted HR 1.35, 95%CI 1.20–1.52, P < 0.001). On multivariate analysis adjusted for clinical, electrocardiographic and laboratory variables, baseline RDW levels were associated with mortality (HR 1.33, 95%CI 1.16–1.53). RDW levels 6 months and 12 months post-implantation were also associated with mortality (HR 1.22, 95%CI 1.08–1.38, P = 0.001; and HR 1.15, 95%CI 1.01–1.32, P = 0.02, respectively). Patients who were re-admitted to hospital during follow-up (n=78) had higher baseline RDW levels as compared to those who were not (14.9%, IQR 14.0, 16.0% vs. 14.3%, IQR 13.7, 15.0%, respectively, P = 0.03).
Conclusion: An elevated RDW level before and after CRT implantation is independently associated with all-cause mortality.