Gabriel Amir MD PhD, Georgy Frenkel MD, Elchanan Bruckheimer MD, Alexander Lowenthal MD, Amichay Rotstein MD, Jacob Katz MD, Yelena Zeitlin MD, Ofer Schiller MD and Einat Birk MD
Background: neonatal cardiac surgery has evolved over the last 50 years with a large percentage of the patients achieving complete physiological repair in the neonatal period. The remaining patients achieve staged palliation with an increasing amount of success.
Objectives: To report our experience with 1000 neonatal cardiac surgical procedures performed in the last 10 years.
Methods: We conducted a retrospective analysis of surgical outcome in all neonatal patients who underwent cardiac surgery between January 2007 and July 2016 at Schneider Children's Medical Center of Israel.
Results: A total of 1003 neonates aged < 30 days underwent surgery for congenital heart defects at our center. Neonatal surgery accounted for 22.5% of all cardiac surgeries. Neonatal operative mortality was 7.3%, Operative mortality for individual lesions were: simple aortic coarctation (CoA) (198 patients, 2.5%), CoA with hypoplastic arch (24, 4%), CoA with ventricular septal defect (VSD) (84, 2.3%), transposition of the great arteries (TGA, simple and complex, 185, 6.3%), TGA with VSD (37, 0%), truncus arteriosus (26, 3.8%), interrupted aortic arch (25, 4%), Norwood Sano (71, 19.7%), neonatal tetralogy of Fallot (41, 0%), and shunt (131 patients, 12%).
Conclusions: Neonatal surgical capabilities have improved substantially over the last decades. Excellent results can be expected for lesions that can be repaired to create biventricular circulation. Improved results can be attributed in part to the evolution of surgical strategies and assistive technologies, but essential is the collaborative effort of surgeons, cardiologists, anesthesiologists, and intensive care specialists acting as a cohesive team whose performance far exceeds the sum of its individual members’ contributions.
Neta Baram MD, Orli Megged MD and Giora Weiser MD
Background: Once a well-recognized entity, occult bacteremia (OB) is no longer a significant or serious bacterial infection. First following the introduction of the Haemophilus influenzae type B vaccine and now with the implementation of the conjugate pneumococcal vaccine (PCV), the number of cases has declined significantly. This has led to a change in many published guidelines to avoid taking blood cultures in fully vaccinated children presenting with fever. In Israel, the introduction of the PCV13 is now widespread.
Objectives: To assess the incidence and outcome of OB, specifically by Streptococcus pneumoniae, in a single large pediatric medical center.
Methods: We conducted a retrospective review of all cases of pneumococcal bacteremias in the years 2008–2013 and specifically those considered occult.
Results: Of 355 cases of bacteremia diagnosed during the study period, 164 were caused by S. pneumoniae and 20 (12.8%) were considered occult. None of the OB cases had any complications. OB was not found in children over the age of 36 months. There was a change in the serotypes involving pneumococcal OB.
Conclusions: OB is uncommon in the PCV-vaccinated population and the serotypes involved have changed.
Julia Berman MD, Adi Aran MD, Tamar Berenstein-Weyel MD and Ehud Lebel MD
Background: Legg-Calvé-Perthes disease (LCPD) is an idiopathic hip osteonecrosis prevalent in children < age 15 years. The etiology remains incompletely understood, partly because of multiple potential environmental risk factors and partly because of lack of genetic markers. It has been hypothesized that hyperactivity may induce mechanical stress and/or vascular damage at a fragile joint.
Objectives: To assess children with LCPD for markers of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) relative to their unaffected comparably aged siblings to exclude the contribution of hyperactive behavior versus environmental and/or genetic factors in LCPD.
Methods: All children followed in the Pediatric Orthopedic Clinic, and their comparably aged siblings, were recruited. ADHD was assessed using the TOVA computerized test and DSM-IV criteria. Quality of life and sleep disorders as ancillary tests were assessed using the Child Health Questionnaire (Parent Form 50), Pediatric Outcomes Data Collection Instrument, and Pediatric Daytime Sleepiness Scale.
Results: Sixteen children with LCPD (age 9.1 ± 3.3, 75% males) were compared with their closest-aged siblings (age 9.3 ± 2.6, 30% males). Mean TOVA scores of children with LCPD (-3.79 ± 2.6) and of their non-LCPD siblings (-3.6 ± 4.04) were lower relative to the general population (0 ± 1.8, P < 0.0001). Both group means were in the ADHD range (≤ -1.8) implying that 73% of this LCPD cohort and 53% of their non-LCPD siblings performed in the ADHD range, relative to 3.6% incidence expected in the general population (P < 0.0001). Other test results were similar in both groups.
Conclusions: Our findings in a small cohort of children with LCPD and their comparably aged siblings do not support an association between LCPD and ADHD. ADHD markers were equally high in the LCPD children and siblings.
Herman A. Cohen MD, Bella Savitsky MPH, Arie Ashkenasi MD and Moshe Hoshen PhD
Background: Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a common neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by inattention, impulsivity and hyperactivity. Recently, increases in ADHD prevalence and methylphenidate use have been reported. There is evidence that children and adolescents use ADHD medication only during the school year.
Objectives: To investigate trends in methylphenidate dispensing over a period of 3 years (2010–2012) at the monthly level and to investigate whether there is any monthly variation, especially during the summer season.
Methods: The database of Clalit Health Services (the largest of the four health funds in Israel) was used to identify (i) patients aged 6–17 years with a diagnosis of ADHD, and (ii) methylpenidate dispensation during the period 2010–2012.
Results: Among children aged 6–17 years diagnosed with ADHD, 43% were treated with methylphenidate. For the period 2010 to 2012 there was an annual drop in methylphenidate dispensing, beginning in June and continuing through the 2 months of summer vacation, with a 2.5-fold reduction from July as compared to May. This decline was consistently followed by a rise in medications dispensed starting August. A similar small drop was observed during the Passover school vacation. The summer drop decreased over the years.
Conclusions: Our findings showed a decrease in the number of methylphenidate prescriptions dispensed during the summer months and Passover as compared to the rest of the year. However, this phenomenon appears to be decreasing. Given that ADHD is a chronic disease state that can effectively be managed with pharmacotherapy, discontinuation of treatment may be harmful for patients and should be considered only on a patient-by-patient basis.
Yael Leitner MD, Alexis Mitelpunkt MD, Idit Posner MD and Noa Vardi MD
Background: Six medical disciplines are responsible for assessment, diagnosis and treatment of people with attention deficiency hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in Israel: family doctors, pediatricians, adult and child neurologists, adult and child psychiatrists.
Objectives: To investigate differences in ADHD diagnostic practices between three different pediatric subspecialties in the clinical setting in order to establish a common ground for a future unified approach.
Methods: An anonymous web-based questionnaire was administered to child psychiatrists, pediatric neurologists and general pediatricians who are actively involved in ADHD diagnosis (n=104).
Results: Neurologists and pediatricians rarely use the mental status examination, while psychiatrists rarely perform a neurological or physical examination (P < 0.0001). A general clinical impression of learning abilities and/or neurodevelopmental skills was implemented more often by pediatric neurologists (P < 0.04).
Conclusions: The significant differences found between the three medical specialties with regard to the clinical evaluation of ADHD could be attributed, at least in part, to the ambiguity of available guidelines concerning the clinical examination, and to the adherence of each specialty to its own "skills." Larger surveys in other countries should be considered and an effort made to create a common, "inter-disciplinary" ground on this important part of ADHD evaluation, differential diagnosis, and research.
Yechiel Sweed MD, Jonathan Singer-Jordan MD, Sorin Papura MD, Norman Loberant MD and Alon Yulevich MD
Background: Trauma is the leading cause of childhood morbidity and mortality. Abdominal bleeding is one of the common causes of mortality due to trauma. Angiography and embolization are well recognized as the primary treatments in certain cases of acute traumatic hemorrhage in adults; however, evidence is lacking in the pediatric population.
Objectives: To assess the safety and efficacy of transcatheter arterial embolization (TAE) for blunt and penetrating abdominal and pelvic trauma in the pediatric age group.
Methods: Three children with blunt abdominal trauma and one child with iatrogenic renal injury (age 4–13 years) were managed with TAE for lacerated liver (one patient), pelvic fractures (one patient) and renal injuries (two patients). The first two patients, victims of road accidents, had multisystem injuries and were treated by emergency embolization after fluid resuscitation in the Emergency Department (ED). The other two patients had renal injuries: a 4 year old boy with blunt abdominal trauma was diagnosed on initial computed tomography with an unexpected Wilms tumor and was treated with embolization 1 day after admission due to hemodynamic deterioration caused by active arterial tumor bleeding. The following day he underwent successful nephrectomy. The other patient was 13 year old boy with nephrotic syndrome who underwent renal biopsy and developed hemodynamic instability. After fluid resuscitation, he underwent an initial negative angiography, but second-look angiography the following day revealed active bleeding from an aberrant renal artery, which was then successfully embolized.
Results: In all four patients, TAE was diagnostic as well as therapeutic, and no child required surgical intervention for control of bleeding.
Conclusions: We propose that emergency transcatheter angiography and arterial embolization be considered following resuscitation in the ED as initial treatment in children with ongoing bleeding after blunt abdominal trauma or iatrogenic renal injury. Implementation of this policy demands availability and cooperation of the interventional radiology services.
Jaber R. Jawdat MD, Stanislav Kocherov MD and Boris Chertin MD
Background: Laparoscopy has gradually become the gold standard for the treatment of non-palpable testicles (NPT), with different success and complication rates.
Objectives: To evaluate outcomes of the one-stage laparoscopic orchiopexy for NPT in our department.
Methods: We retrospectively evaluated the medical files of patients who underwent laparoscopic orchidopexy with the identical technique. Only patients with at least one year follow-up were included. At follow-up we assessed the age (at surgery), follow-up time, laterality of testes, postoperative complications, testicular size and testicular localization.
Results: Thirty-six consecutive patients, median age 16 months, underwent one-stage laparoscopic orchiopexy. Sixteen patients (44.4%) had peeping testis type, in 13 patients (36.1%) the testicle was located within 2 cm from the internal ring and in the remaining 7 patients (19.4%) it was detected > 2 cm from the internal ring. In six children (16.7%) dividing the spermatic vessels was performed in one stage with laparoscopic orchiopexy. In the remaining 30 patients (83.7%) a laparoscopic one-stage procedure was performed with preservation of the spermatic vessels. Testicular atrophy was observed in 2 cases (5.6%), and 6 patients (16%) had a relatively small testicle compared to the contralateral normal testicle at follow-up. Two patients (5.6%) presented with testicle positioning at the entrance area into the scrotum. None of the patients demonstrated hernia recurrence at follow-up. There was no difference in surgical outcome in children who had surgery with preservation of the spermatic vessels versus those who underwent orchiopexy with division of the spermatic vessels in one stage.
Conclusions: Laparoscopic transection of the testicular vessels appeared to be safe in boys with high abdominal testes that did not reach the scrotum after laparoscopic high retroperitoneal dissection.
Igor Sukhotnik MD, Igor Aranovich MD, Bshara Mansur MD, Ibrahim Matter MD, Yefim Kandelis MD and Sarel Halachmi MD
Background: The traditional surgical approach to the excision of persistent urachal remnants is a lower midline laparotomy or semicircular infraumbilical incision.
Objectives: To report our experience with laparoscopic/open urachus excision as a minimally invasive diagnostic and surgical technique.
Methods: This was a retrospective study involving patients who were diagnosed with persistent urachus and underwent laparoscopic/open excision. The morbidity, recovery, and outcomes of surgery were reviewed.
Results: Eight patients (males:females 6:2) with an age range of 1 month to 17 years underwent laparoscopic or open excision (six and two patients respectively). All patients presented with discharge from the umbilicus. Although three patients had no sonographic evidence of a patent urachus, diagnostic laparoscopy detected a patent urachus that was excised laparoscopically. The operative time of laparoscopic surgery ranged from 19 to 71 minutes (the last case was combined with bilateral laparoscopic inguinal hernia repair), and the mean duration of hospital stay was 2.0 ± 0.36 days. Pathological examination confirmed a benign urachal remnant in all cases.
Conclusions: Laparoscopy is a useful alternative for the management of persistent or infected urachus, especially when its presence is clinically suspected despite the lack of sonographic evidence. The procedure is associated with low morbidity, although a small risk of bladder injury exists, particularly in cases of severe active inflammation.
Efrat Avinadav MD, Anastasia Almog MD, Dragan Kravarusic MD, Emanuelle Seguier MD, Inbal Samuk MD, Adrianna Nika MD and Enrique Freud MD
Background: Point-of-care ultrasound (POCUS) is becoming a common tool for routine use in emergency medicine, anesthesiology and intensive care for diagnostic and interventional purposes. When a portable ultrasound device became available for the department of Pediatric and Adolescent Surgery at the Schneider's Children Medical Center of Israel, we added POCUS assessments to the physician's daily rounds. POCUS is performed by pediatric surgeons trained in basic ultrasonography skills. Starting September 2015 all POCUS examinations were documented.
Objectives: To describe the current use, diagnostic and therapeutic impacts of POCUS in a department of pediatric and adolescent surgery.
Methods: We conducted an observational study of all the documented POCUS procedures performed during a half-year period. Data regarding patient condition and the POCUS procedures were collected, as well as data on the use of other diagnostic modalities, mainly formal ultrasound exams (by radiologists) and computed tomography scans and their correlation with the POCUS assessment.
Results: Fifty-one POCUS exams were performed during the study period, most of which served to define the presence and resolution of a collection – intraabdominal (34%) and subcutaneous (31%). Despite a high rate for formal diagnostic studies (65%), probably due to a relative lack of confidence of surgeons performing the POCUS exams during this initial period, most results (92%) were compatible.
Conclusions: The ability and availability to perform multiple POCUS exams by the attending physician proved to be a valuable aide to the classical physical and laboratory examinations of surgical patients, and we predict its increasing use in quotidian practice.
Ayelet Rimon MD, Shelly Shalom MD, Ido Wolyniez MD, Alejandro Gruber, Schachter-Davidov Anita MD and Miguel Glatstein MD
Background: Medical clowns are increasingly used for diminishing pain and anxiety during painful procedures being performed on children in the hospital setting. Cortisol levels rise as a response to emotional distress.
Objectives: To investigate whether medical clown-assisted interventions to reduce child's distress during venipuncture have an effect on cortisol levels.
Methods: During a 1 year period, children requiring blood work or intravenous access in the pediatric emergency department were prospectively randomized to either the presence or absence of a medical clown during the procedure. The child's distress was evaluated using the Faces Pain Scale - revised (FPS-R) for the 4–7 year age group and the visual analog scales (VAS) for those aged 8–15 years. Serum cortisol levels were measured in blood samples obtained by venipuncture.
Results: Fifty-three children aged 2–15 years were randomly assigned to the study group (with medical clown, n=29) or to the control group (without medical clown, n=24). Combined pain scores of the study group and control group were 2.2 and 7.5 respectively (P < 0.001). No difference in mean cortisol levels was found between the study group and the control group at all ages (16.4 µg/dl vs. 18.3 µg/dl, P = 0.65).
Conclusions: In this pilot study, medical clowns reduced the distress from venipuncture in children. No effect on cortisol levels was observed.