Keren Cohen-Hagai MD, Dan Feldman MD, Tirza Turani-Feldman BOT, Ruth Hadary MD, Shilo Lotan MD and Yona Kitay-Cohen MD
Background: Magnesium is an essential intracellular cation. Magnesium deficiency is common in the general population and its prevalence among patients with cirrhosis is even higher. Correlation between serum levels and total body content is poor because most magnesium is intracellular. Minimal hepatic encephalopathy is a subclinical phase of hepatic encephalopathy with no overt symptoms. Cognitive exams can reveal minor changes in coordination, attention, and visuomotor function, whereas language and verbal intelligence are usually relatively spared.
Objectives: To assess the correlation between intracellular and serum magnesium levels and minimal hepatic encephalopathy.
Methods: Outpatients with a diagnosis of compensated liver cirrhosis were enrolled in this randomized, double-blinded study. Patients were recruited for the study from November 2013 to January 2014, and were randomly assigned to a control (placebo) or an interventional (treated with magnesium oxide) group. Serum and intracellular magnesium levels were measured at enrollment and at the end of the study. Cognitive function was assessed by a specialized occupational therapist.
Results: Forty-two patients met the inclusion criteria, 29 of whom were included in this study. Among these, 83% had abnormal cognitive exam results compatible with minimal hepatic encephalopathy. While only 10% had hypomagnesemia, 33.3% had low levels of intracellular magnesium. Initial intracellular and serum magnesium levels positively correlated with cognitive performance.
Conclusions: Magnesium deficiency is common among patients with compensated liver cirrhosis. We found an association between magnesium deficiency and impairment in several cognitive function tests. This finding suggests involvement of magnesium in the pathophysiology of minimal hepatic encephalopathy.
Arwa Younis MD, Anat Wieder MD, Roy Beinart MD, Michael Glikson MD FHRS and Eyal Nof MD
Background: Pacemaker pocket early post-implantation inflammation (EPII) is defined as clinical signs of local erythema without any systemic signs of infection occurring early after implantation. Data on the best treatment regimen for apparent superficial EPII is scarce.
Objectives: To investigate the prognostic value of medical treatment, rather than extraction surgery, in patients with EPII.
Methods: Data from 6013 consecutive patients who underwent cardiac implantable electronic device (CIED) implantation or replacement from 2007–2015 were retrospectively analyzed; 40 (0.7%) presented with EPII. Our goal was the absence of major complications and to avoidance of extraction.
Results: Patients with EPII were initially treated medically. Nineteen (47%) (group A) recovered with antibiotic treatment only. In the other 21 patients (53%) (group B), CIED extraction was performed. Group B had more major complications compared to group A (15 [71%] vs. 0 [0%], P < 0.001). The only significant difference in baseline characteristics was history of non-initial procedure. While 86% of group B patients had a previous non-initial procedure, only 53% of group A patients underwent previous replacement (P < 0.05). In multivariate analysis, previous non-initial procedure was the only predictor for need of extraction at 1 year, hazard ratio 3.5, 95% confidence interval 1.001–11.73, P < 0.05.
Conclusions: Conservative treatment in patients with EPII after non-initial procedure can lead to serious adverse events resulting in the need for extraction. Close follow-up and aggressive treatment should be considered early in the therapeutic course.
Marina Leitman MD, Marina Levitan MD, Vladimir Tyomkin MSc and Zvi Vered MD FACC FESC
Background: A cardiac restrictive filling patterns are associated with unfavorable prognoses. Cardiac interventions may change the natural history of patients.
Objectives: To investigate the prevalence of restrictive filling pattern in routine echocardiographic examinations and their association with morbidity and mortality.
Methods: The clinical and echocardiographic data of patients with newly diagnosed restrictive filling pattern were analyzed and summarized.
Results: Among 8000 patients who underwent an echocardiographic examination in our hospital in 2013, a restrictive filling pattern was identified in 256. Of these, 134 showed a restrictive filling pattern that was newly diagnosed. Mean age was 69 years. Hypertension, diabetes, and ischemic heart disease were found in 81%, 60%, and 53%, respectively. Left ventricular ejection fraction was 42% ± 16%. Severe valvular abnormalities were found in 18%. During follow-up (29 ± 15 months), 40% of patients died. The strongest predictor of mortality (73%) was moderate or more advanced aortic stenosis, P = 0.005. Renal failure was an important independent predictor of mortality (53%, P < 0.05). A very high E/E' ratio ≥ 20, was another independent mortality predictor (50%, P < 0.03). Patients who died were less likely to have undergone cardiac interventions than those who survived (26% vs. 45%, P < 0.03).
Conclusions: Prevalence of restrictive filling among echocardiographic studies is 3.2%. In a half of these, the restrictive filling pattern is a new diagnosis. Patients who are diagnosed with a new restrictive filling pattern have higher mortality rates. Patients with restrictive filling should be evaluated thoroughly for possible coronary artery or valvular heart disease.
Anna Kaplinsky MD, Vera Pyatigorskaya MA, Hila Granot BA, Ilana Gelernter MA, Maoz Ben-Ayun PhD, Dror Alezra PhD, Shira L. Galper MD, Zvi Symon MD and Merav A. Ben-David MD
Background: Adjuvant radiotherapy for breast cancer reduces local recurrence and improves survival. In patients with left sided breast cancer, anterior heart position or medial tumor location may cause inadequate breast coverage due to heart shielding. Respiration gating using the Real-time Position Management (RPM) system enables pushing the heart away from the tangential fields during inspiration, thus optimizing the treatment plan.
Objectives: To compare breathing inspiration gating (IG) techniques with free breathing (FB), focusing on breast coverage.
Methods: The study comprised 49 consecutive patients with left sided breast cancer who underwent lumpectomy and adjuvant radiation. RPM was chosen due to insufficient breast coverage caused by an anterior heart position or medial lumpectomy cavity. FB and IG computed tomography simulations were generated for each patient. Breast (PTVbreast) and lumpectomy cavity (CTVlump) were defined as the target areas. Optimized treatment plans were created for each scan. A dosimetric comparison was made for breast coverage and heart and lungs doses.
Results: PTVbreast V95% and mean dose (Dmean) were higher with IG vs. FB (82.36% vs. 78.88%, P = 0.002; 95.73% vs. 93.63%, P < 0.001, respectively). CTVlump V95% and Dmean were higher with IG (98.87% vs. 88.92%, P = 0.001; 99.14% vs. 96.73%, P = 0.003, respectively). The cardiac dose was lower with IG. The IG left lung Dmean was higher. No statistical difference was found for left lung V20.
Conclusions: In patients with suboptimal treatment plans due to anterior heart position or medial lumpectomy cavity, RPM IG enabled better breast/tumor bed coverage and reduced cardiac doses.
Dror Lakstein MD, Ornit Cohen BEng Msc, Efrat Daglan MD, Yaron Haimovich MD and Zachary Tan MD FRCSC
Background: Mortality and decrease in function after hip fracture are significantly related to patient factors including age, gender, co-morbidities, and mental status. Several studies demonstrated ethnic disparities in incidence, mortality, and functional outcome after hip fractures in the United States.
Objectives: To assess the relationship between ethnicity and hip fracture incidence and outcomes of mortality, functional change, and perioperative complications in the Israeli population.
Methods: We reviewed our institutional hip fracture registry for all patients from 2014–2015. Patients with incomplete data, < 60 years of age, or pathologic and periprosthetic fractures were excluded. Our study comprised 693 patients. Ethnicity was based on country of birth. Specifically, for those born in Israel, the nationality of either Jewish or Arab was further dichotomized. Perioperative complications, mortality, and mobility status at 1 year follow-up were recorded. The ethnicities of 27,130 patients admitted to the medicine and surgical wards during the same time interval served as a control group for the hip fracture cohort.
Results: Immigrants from Europe and America had the highest incidence of hip fractures. Fracture types varied in incidence in groups with 70% of extracapsular hip fractures occurring in Arabs and immigrants from Eastern countries, compared to 60% in immigrants from Western countries and the former Soviet Union. Mortality, perioperative complications, and mobility at 1 year were similar in all ethnic groups.
Conclusion: Our study demonstrated significant differences in incidence and fracture characteristic among ethnicities, but no difference in patient outcome. These findings differed from the available North American studies.
Ainat Klein MD, Gad Dotan MD and Anat Kesler MD
Background: Idiopathic intracranial hypertension (IIH) is a disorder of unknown etiology. Its occurrence in the general population is 1/100,000, and 20/100,000 among overweight women of childbearing age. Familial occurrence is reportedly uncommon and not well-characterized.
Objectives: To describe a familial association with IIH.
Methods: We conducted a retrospective chart review of all familial cases of IIH examined in the neuro-ophthalmology clinic of our medical center between January 2006 and June 2013.
Results: Of a total of 520 patients with IIH, 15 had other family members with IIH (from seven different families). The family relation was a mother and daughter in two families, a brother and sister in four families, and an aunt and two first-degree cousins in the seventh family. Symptoms, course of disease, and risk factors were similar among the relatives of all seven families, except for the age at diagnosis, which was different in one family. All of the adult patients of six families were obese (body mass index 25–35 kg/m2), and all of the members of the other family were morbidly obese. There was no association between other systemic risk factors and IIH.
Conclusions: IIH occurrence within a family is more common than previously believed, and its incidence in families is more common than in the general population. The clinical course appears to be similar in family members. Our findings suggest a genetic predisposition. Further investigation of familial cases may yield useful information on the pathogenesis and genetic nature of this condition.
Joseph Mergui MD, David Raveh-Brawer MD, Meydan Ben-Ishai MD, Sarah Prijs MD, Cornelius Gropp MD, Igor Barash MD MHA, Jean-Louis Golmard MD PhD, Sol Jaworowski MBBS FRANZCP
Background: There is scant research on the psychopathology of Israeli soldiers who present to a general hospital emergency department (ED).
Objectives: To assess the psychopathology among a cohort of Israeli soldiers who presented to a general hospital ED for mental health assessment.
Methods: The demographic and clinical characteristics of 124 consecutive soldiers who presented to the ED for psychiatric assessment between January 2008 and September 2012 were reviewed. Twenty-seven soldiers from the cohort were contacted for follow-up by telephone on average 52 months later.
Results: The reasons for presentation to the ED, usually during the early stages of military service, included self-harming behavior, suicidal ideation, somatoform complaints, and dissatisfaction with their military service. Psychiatric diagnoses included adjustment disorder and personality disorder. Self-harming behavior/suicidal ideation was significantly correlated with unspecified adjustment disorder (P = 0.02) and personality disorder (P = 0.001). At follow-up, there was a lack of substantial psychopathology: none of the subjects engaged in self-harming behavior/suicidal ideation and a consistent trend was observed toward clinical improvement.
Conclusions: Psychiatric intervention of soldiers who present to a general hospital ED because of emotional difficulties may provide the opportunity for crisis intervention and validation of the soldier's distress. To the best of our knowledge this is the first Israeli study of psychopathology among soldiers who presented to an ED.
Yael Peled MD, Dov Freimark MD, Yedael Har-Zahav MD, Eyal Nachum MD, Alexander Kogan MD, Yigal Kassif MD and Jacob Lavee MD
Background: Heart transplantation (HT) is the treatment of choice for patients with end-stage heart failure. The HT unit at the Sheba Medical Center is the largest of its kind in Israel.
Objectives: To evaluate the experience of HT at a single center, assess trends over 3 decades, and correlate with worldwide data.
Methods: Between 1990 and 2017, we reviewed all 285 adult HT patients. Patients were grouped by year of HT: 1990–1999 (decade 1), 2000–2009 (decade 2), and 2010–2017 (decade 3).
Results: The percentage of women undergoing HT has increased and etiology has shifted from ischemic to non-ischemic cardiomyopathy (10% vs. 25%, P = 0.033; 70% vs. 40% ischemic, for decades 1 vs. 3, respectively). Implantation of left ventricular assist device as a bridge to HT has increased. Metabolic profile has improved over the years with lower low-density lipoprotein, diabetes, and hypertension after HT (101 mg/dl, 27%, and 41% at decade 3, respectively). There has been a prominent change in immunosuppressive treatments, currently more than 90% are treated with tacrolimus, compared with 2.7% and 30.9% in decades 1 and 2, respectively (P < 0.001). Cardiac allograft vasculopathy (CAV) rates have declined significantly (47% vs. 17.5% for decades 1 and 2, P < 0.001) as have the combined endpoint of CAV/death. Similarly, the current incidence of acute rejections is significantly lower.
Conclusions: Our analysis of over 25 years of a single-center experience with HT shows encouraging improved results, which are in line with worldwide standards and experience.
Moshe Bronshtein MD, Ayala Gover MD, Ron Beloosesky MD, Hanin Dabaja MD, Yuval Ginsberg MD, Zeev Weiner MD and Nizar Khatib MD
Background: Ptyalism gravidarum (PG) is a condition of hypersalivation that affects pregnant women early in gestation. Symptoms include massive saliva volumes (up to 2 liters per day), swollen salivary glands, sleep deprivation, significant emotional distress, and social difficulties.
Objectives: To examine maternal and fetal characteristics and pregnancy outcomes of patients with PG.
Methods: Patients diagnosed with PG in our clinic during the years 2001–2016 were identified and contacted. Demographic data were extracted from patient charts and clinical and outcome data was collected via telephone interviews.
Results: The incidence of PG was 1/963 (0.09%) in our sample. Eleven out of 22 women (40%) with PG were also diagnosed with hyperemesis gravidarum. Fetal gender did not increase the risk. Of the mothers presenting with PG, 37% had a positive family history for this condition. There was no associated increase in the rate of fetal or maternal complications. Two women reported a resolution of the symptoms immediately following hypnosis with acupuncture treatment.
Conclusions: Although PG represents an unpleasant mental and physical condition, it does not pose any specific risk to the health of the mother or increase adverse perinatal outcomes for the fetus. Alternative medicine could play a role in the treatment of PG.