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עמוד בית Thu, 14.11.19

February 2011


Focus
Y. Plakht, A. Shiyovich, F. Lauthman, Y. Shoshan, D. Antonovitch, N. Waknine, T. Barabi and M. Sherf

Background: During military escalations emergency departments provide treatment both to victims of conflict-related injuries and to routine admissions. This requires special deployment by the hospitals to optimize utilization of resources.

Objectives: To evaluate “routine” visits to the ED[1] during Operation Cast Lead in Israel in 2008–2009.

Methods: We obtained data regarding routine visits to the ED at Soroka University Medical Center throughout OCL[2]. The visits one month before and after OCL and the corresponding periods one year previous served as controls.

Results: The mean number of daily visits throughout the study period (126 days) was 506 ± 80.9, which was significantly lower during OCL (443.5 ± 82) compared with the reference periods (P < 0.001). Compared to the reference periods, during OCL the relative rates were higher among Bedouins, visitors from the region closest to the Gaza Strip (< 30 km), patients transported to the ED by ambulance and patients of employment age; the rates were lower among children. No difference in the different periods was found in the rate of women patients, distance of residence from Beer Sheva, rate of patients referred to the ED by a community physician, and hour of arrival. The overall in-hospital admission rate increased during OCL, mainly in the internal medicine and the obstetric departments. There was no change in the number of in-hospital births during OCL; however, the rate of preterm labors (32–36 weeks) decreased by 41% (P = 0.013).

Conclusions: Throughout OCL the number of routine ED visits decreased significantly compared to the control periods. This finding could help to optimize the utilization of hospital resources during similar periods.

 






[1] ED = emergency department



[2] OCL = Operation Cast Lead


Original Articles
Y. Naaman, D. Shveiky, I. Ben-Shachar, A. Shushan, J. Mejia-Gomez and A. Benshushan

Background: Uterine sarcoma constitutes a highly malignant group of uterine tumors. It accounts for 2–6% of uterine malignancies and its incidence is 1.7 in 100,000 women. The three most common variants of uterine sarcoma are endometrial stromal sarcoma, leiomyosarcoma and carcinosarcoma. Based on relatively small case series, the literature provides little information on the risk factors, the natural course of the disease and the preferred treatment.

Objectives: To evaluate uterine sarcoma patients treated in a tertiary referral center in Israel over a 20 year period (1980–2005).

Methods: We conducted a retrospective review of the charts of 40 uterine sarcoma patients, including their tumor characteristics, stage at diagnosis, treatment modalities, follow-up and survival.

Results: The patients’ mean age was 53 years (range 32–76); 30% of the patients had carcinosarcoma, 55% had leiomyosarcoma and 15% had ESS[1]. Half of the patients presented with stage I disease, 23% stage II, 10% stage III and 15% stage IV. Thirty-nine patients were treated by surgery. Adjuvant radiotherapy was administered to 39% of the patients, adjuvant chemotherapy to 21% and combined radiotherapy and chemotherapy to 9%. The mean follow-up period was 44 months, at which time disease had recurred in 44% of the patients. The disease stage was correlated with the 5-year survival rate, which was 73.1% for stages I-II and 22.2% for stages III- IV.

Conclusions: In accordance with other larger studies our data show that the only prognostic factor that was significantly correlated with prognosis was the stage of the disease at diagnosis. Despite advances in diagnosis and treatment, survival has not improved over the last 25 years.






[1] ESS = endometrial stromal sarcoma



 
G. Rubin, S. Krasnyansky, I. Gavish, I. Elmalah, O. Ben-Lulu and N. Rozen

Background: Routine histopathological analysis of bone extracted during total joint replacement is controversial.

Objectives: To evaluate the utility of routine histopathological analysis in total joint replacement.

Methods: We calculated the risk for discrepant diagnosis between the pre- and postoperative histopathological results by performing a meta-analysis of 11 studies (including our data). We also calculated the risk for significant discrepancies.

Results: The discrepant diagnoses analysis showed a random effect of 3% discrepancies (95% confidence interval 1.2–3.7%). Funnel plot indicates a publication bias; consequently, the conclusions from this analysis should be interpreted with caution. Regarding the significant discrepancy in diagnosis, we performed a meta-analysis of nine studies. Fixed-effects analysis of all the studies resulted in 0.16% significant discrepancies (95% CI[1] 0.02–0.30%) with no heterogeneity (Q = 3.93, degrees of freedom = 9, P = 0.14, I2 = 49.2%), and appropriate fixed-effects models.

Conclusions: We recommend no further routine histological examination, reserving this tool for cases with a controversial primary diagnosis and unexpected findings during the operation.






[1] CI = confidence interval


L. Kogan, J. Menczer, E. Shejter, I. Liphshitz and M. Barchana

Background: The age-standardized incidence rate of invasive cervical cancer in Israeli Jewish women is persistently low. Selected demographic characteristics of Israeli Jewish women with cervical squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) were reported recently. 

Objectives: To assess selected clinical characteristics of Israeli Jewish women with cervical SCC.

Methods: Included were all Israeli Jewish women with SCC diagnosed during the 3-year period 2002­–2004. Data were obtained from the Israel National Cancer Registry and the Central Population Registry. Discharge summaries of the patients were reviewed and clinical data were abstracted.

Results: The study was based on 350 Israeli Jewish women with histologically confirmed cervical SCC diagnosed during the 3-year study period. The median age of the patients was 50.3 years. The most common main complaint was discharge/bleeding (35.7%) and only a small percentage (7.4%) was diagnosed subsequent to an abnormal cytological smear. The rate of patients diagnosed in stage I was 47.7%. The overall absolute 5-year survival and survival in stage I was 70% and 83.8% respectively. The rate of Israeli born patients diagnosed in stage I and their overall absolute 5-year survival was significantly higher than in the other ethnic groups.

Conclusions: Age, the most frequent main complaint, the percent of patients diagnosed in stage I and the 5-year survival (overall and in stage I) are similar to data in other countries. The survival of Israeli born women seems to be better than that of other ethnic groups.
 

G. Altarescu, D. Rachmilewitz and S. Zevin

Background: Ulcerative colitis (UC) is a common and difficult-to-treat disease. In non-smokers the relative risk of developing UC[1] is 2.9 compared with smokers, who tend to have a later onset and a milder disease. Nicotine is the component of cigarette smoke responsible for the favorable effects in UC. Nicotine is metabolized by the enzyme CYP2A6. Subjects who are homozygotes for CYP2A6*4 gene polymorphism are poor nicotine metabolizers, while homozygotes for CYP2A6*1A polymorphism are extensive metabolizers.

Objectives: To compare the frequency of CYP2A6 and CHRNA3 polymorphisms among smokers and non-smokers with UC, and their effect on disease severity.

Methods: Data on the age at onset of disease, disease activity, and treatment were obtained from questionnaires completed by the 69 subjects in our study group. CYP2A6

*1A,*4A and CHRNA3 polymorphisms were determined by polymerase chain reaction and restriction enzyme analysis.

Results: Nine percent of the patients were current smokers, 30% were former smokers and 61% non-smokers. Among smokers and former smokers 63% were homozygotes for CYP2A6*1A and 4% were homozygotes for CYP2A6*4A, whereas among non-smokers 66% were homozygotes for CYP2A6*4A (P < 0.0001). There was no significant effect of CYP2A6 or CHRNA3 genotype on UC activity.

Conclusions: We found a very high proportion of poor nicotine metabolizers among non-smoking patients with UC and a very low proportion among current and former smokers, making it difficult to determine the effect of poor metabolizer genotype on disease activity in smokers with UC. However, it may be possible to identify UC patients who are poor metabolizers of nicotine and who may benefit from nicotine or nicotine-like pharmacological treatment.






[1] UC = ulcerative colitis



 
R. Da Costa, M. Szyper-Kravitz, Z. Szekanecz, T. Csépány, K. Dankó, Y. Shapira, G. Zandman-Goddard, H. Orbach, N. Agmon-Levin and Y. Shoenfeld

Background: Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a common demyelinating disorder of the central nervous system (CNS) and although it is a well-established autoimmune disease its ethiopathogenesis has yet to be fully elucidated. The disease may present in several clinical forms that are closely associated with disease morbidity. In recent years various environmental and hormonal factors have been implicated in the pathogenesis of autoimmunity.

Objectives: To evaluate ferritin and prolactin levels in MS patients and their correlation with clinical manifestations of the disease.

Methods: Serum samples from 150 multiple sclerosis patients were evaluated for demographic characteristics, clinical parameters as well as prolactin and ferritin levels utilizing the Liaison chemiluminescent immunoassays (DiaSorin, Italy). Sera from 100 matched healthy donors were used as controls.

Results: Hyperprolactinemia was documented in 10 of 150 MS patients (6.7%) and hyperferritinemia in 12 (8%), both of which were significantly more common in this group compared with healthy controls (P ≤ 0.01 and P = 0.02 respectively). Among female MS patients, elevated prolactin levels were related to the secondary progressive type of disease (P = 0.05), whereas hyperferritinemia was associated with male gender (P = 0.03) and with the relapsing progressive type of the disease (P = 0.02). An inverse association was found between hyperferritinemia and the relapsing-remitting type of MS in male patients (P = 0.05)

Conclusions: Our results suggest a plausible association between these biomarkers and certain clinical types and gender among MS patients. Further studies combining clinical data, CNS imaging and these markers are warranted.
 

T. Berlin, A. Meyer, P. Rotman-Pikielny, A. Natur and Y. Levy

Background: Many patients in the internal medicine ward have anemia. The etiology for the anemia may be multifactorial and, in the setting of inflammatory process when the ferritin is increased, it is difficult to diagnose iron deficiency anemia. Soluble transferrin receptor (sTfR) had been suggested as an indicator for iron deficiency. No study has investigated the meaning of high sTfR as the only positive marker of iron deficiency anemia (IDA) caused by gastrointestinal tract (GIT) bleeding in hospitalized patients.

Objectives: To demonstrate the importance of high levels of sTfR as a marker for further GIT investigation in cases of anemia where the level of ferritin was normal or increased

Methods: We retrospectively assessed all patients in an internal medicine ward in our facility with anemia, high sTfR[1] levels (> 5.0 mg/L) and normal or high ferritin levels who underwent esophagogastroduodenoscopy and colonoscopy.

Results: Of 32 patients with anemia and normal or high ferritin levels and high sTfR, 22 patients (68%) had findings that explained IDA[2] (in some patients more than one finding). Those findings were colonic polyps (n=9), carcinoma of colon (n=4), duodenal ulcer (n=4), carcinoma of stomach (n=3), colitis (n=3), atrophic gastritis (n=1), erosive gastritis (n=1) and angiodysplasia (n=1).

Conclusions: High sTfR may be a good indicator of IDA caused by GIT[3] bleeding when the ferritin level is normal or high. GIT investigation is warranted in such cases.






[1] sTfR = soluble transferrin receptor



[2] IDA = iron deficiency anemia



[3] GIT = gastrointestinal tracgt



 
M. Papoulas, N. Lubezky, Y. Goykhman, I. Kori, E. Santo, R. Nakache, J. Klausner and M. Ben-Haim

Background: The diagnostic and therapeutic approach to hilar cholangiocarcinoma and thus the prognosis have changed significantly over the last two decades. Nonetheless, hilar  cholangiocarcinoma  presents a complex surgical challenge.

Objectives: To assess the outcome of the radical approach for the management of types III and IV hilar  cholangiocarcinoma.

Methods: We conducted a retrospective single-center study. Preoperative diagnosis was based on ultrasound, computed tomography and selective percutaneous cholangiography without tissue diagnosis. Surgery was radical and included en-bloc liver, extrahepatic biliary tree and hilar lymph nodes resection, followed by biliary reconstruction with hepatico-jejunostomy.

Results: Fifteen patients (mean age 49 years, range 24–72) were managed accordingly. Anatomic classification of the biliary involvement was Bismuth-Corlette type IIIA (n=4), type IIIB (n=3) and type IV (n=8). The surgical procedures performed included four right hepatic lobectomies, five left hepatic lobectomies and six trisegmentectomies (all extended to the caudate lobe). Complete negative resection margins (R0) were accomplished in 12 cases (80%). Regional lymph node metastases were detected in five cases. There were two perioperative mortalities. Long-term follow-up (mean 30 months, range 6–72) revealed local recurrences in two cases, distant metastases in three, and both local and distant in two cases. Eleven patients are alive and 6 are without evidence of disease. The overall 2- and 5-year survival is 78% and 38% respectively.

Conclusions: In selected patients, the aggressive surgical approach to hilar cholangiocarcinoma is justified and can result in long-term survival.
 

Reviews
G. Berger, Z.S. Azzam, E. Hardak, Y. Tavor and M. Yigla

Idiopathic pulmonary arterial hypertension (IPAH) is an isolated small-vessel disease comprising vasoconstriction, remodeling and thrombosis of small pulmonary arteries. However, there is evidence that IPAH[1] does not respect anatomic boundaries and might extend into large vessels such as large central thrombi. On the other hand, chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension (CTEPH) represents a distinct category of pulmonary hypertension as it is thought to be due to an occlusion of the major pulmonary arteries following a thromboembolic event. However, it is currently evident that in most patients, there is a concomitant small-vessel disease. The involvement of both small and large vessels in both IPAH and CTEPH[2] together with a high incidence of silent thromboembolic events might create difficulties in identifying the true cause of pulmonary hypertension. An accurate diagnosis of the cause determines the management and prognosis. Patients with CTEPH can potentially be offered curative surgery in the form of pulmonary endarterectomy; however, oxygen, vasodilators, anticoagulation, and lung transplantation are more feasible options for IPAH.






[1] IPAH = idiopathic pulmonary arterial hypertension



[2] CTEPH = chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension


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ז'בוטינסקי 35 רמת גן, בניין התאומים 2 קומות 10-11, ת.ד. 3566, מיקוד 5213604. טלפון: 03-6100444, פקס: 03-5753303