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עמוד בית
Thu, 13.05.21

April 2021


Coronavirus (COVID-19)
Adnan Zaina MD, Walid Tarabeih MD, Ali Abid MD, and Sameer Kassem MD

This year Ramadan occurs during the global coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Data has shown that patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) are prone to severe disease with COVID-19 and with increased mortality. Acute complications such as dehydration, starvation ketosis, ketoacidosis, and the increased risk of coagulopathy and thrombosis should be considered particularly during this pandemic period. Fasting during Ramadan this year and the COVID-19 pandemic is more challenging, not only for patients with T2DM but also for healthcare providers. We present healthcare providers with important aspects to consider during the COVID-19 pandemic for patients with T2DM who intend to fast during Ramadan and other fasting days

Elias Hakalehto MSc PhD

This mini review includes two case descriptions. It introduces the use of chicken egg yolk antibody (IgY) solutions in the prevention and cure of viral and bacterial infections. Application for the protection against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2), rotavirus, and influenza viruses, as well as for the eradication of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, caries, various enteric bacteria and other pathogens, and toxins have been developed. This approach is a fast, reliable, safe, and tested method for producing molecular shield and protection against emerging pathogens and epidemics. In the current pandemic situation caused by coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19), this method of passive immunization could be applied for rapid protection against modifiable agents. The specific IgY antibodies start to accumulate into egg yolks about 3 weeks after the immunization of the chicken. The product can be collected safely, as the antigen is not found in the eggs. This method for microbial safety uses natural means and commonly used food substances, which have been tested and could be produced for both blocking epidemics and applying personalized medicine

Michal A. Julius MD, Dror Cantrell MD, Saleh Sharif MD, Dana Zelnik Yovel MD, and Micha J. Rapoport MD

Coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID‐19) is recognized as a respiratory illness, which includes pulmonary consolidations, hypoxemic states, and hypercoagulopathic tendencies with a broad clinical severity. Recently, more reports have described post-infection manifestations. These include multi-system inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) with more than 400 cases published since the start of the coronavirus disease pandemic. In October 2020, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) published 27 cases [1] describing the new multi-system inflammatory syndrome in adults (MIS-A). Nine of the cases were reported directly to the CDC, 7 from published case reports and another 11 patients found in three distinct case series

Eytan Damari MD, Alon Farfel MD, Itai Berger MD, Reut Ron, and Yonatan Yeshayahu MD

Background: The effect of extended shift length on pediatric residency is controversial. Israeli residents perform shifts extending up to 26 hours, a practice leading to general dissatisfaction. In early 2020, during the coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, many Israeli hospitals transitioned from 26-hour shifts to 13-hour shifts in fixed teams (capsules) followed by a 24-hour rest period at home. The regulation changes enacted by the Israeli government during the COVID-19 pandemic provided a rare opportunity to assess perception by residents regarding length of shifts before and after the change.

Objectives: To assess perception of pediatric residency in three aspects: resident wellness, ability to deliver quality healthcare, and acquisition of medical education following the change to the shorter shifts model.

Methods: We performed a prospective observational study among pediatric residents. Residents completed an online self-assessment questionnaire before and after the COVID-19 emergency regulations changed toward shorter shifts.

Results: Sixty-seven residents answered the questionnaires before (37) and after (30) the shift changes. The average score was significantly better for the 13-hour shifts versus the 26-hour shifts, except for questions regarding available time for research. There was a positive perception regarding the shorter night shifts model among pediatric residents, with an increase in general satisfaction and improvement in perception of general wellness, ability to deliver quality healthcare, and medical education acquisition.

Conclusions: Following the change to shorter shift length, perception of pediatric residents included improvement in wellness, ability to deliver quality healthcare, and availability of medical education

Michal Vinker-Shuster MD, Ephraim S. Grossman PhD, and Yonatan Yeshayahu MD

Background: The coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) social-distancing strategy, including 7 weeks of strict lockdown, enabled an extraordinary test of stay-at-home regulations, which forced a sedentary lifestyle on all children and adolescents.

Objectives: To assess the lockdown effect on pediatric weight.

Methods: A retrospective-prospective cohort study at our hospital’s pediatric outpatient clinics following the COVID-19 lockdown. Patients aged 0–18 years visiting the clinic were weighed and previous weight and other clinical data were collected from the medical charts. Weight-percentile-for-age standardization was calculated according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization growth tables. Pre- and post-lockdown weight-percentiles-for-age were compared using paired t-test. Multivariate analysis was conducted using linear regression model.

Results: The study was comprised of 229 patients; 117/229 (51.1%) were boys, 60/229 (26.2%) aged under 6 years. Total mean weight-percentile was significantly higher following the lockdown (40.44 vs. 38.82, respectively, P = 0.029). Boys had a significant post-lockdown weight-percentile rise (37.66 vs. 34.42, P = 0.014), whereas girls had higher baseline pre-quarantine weight-percentile of 43.42, which did not change. Patients younger than 6 years had a significant increase in weight-percentiles (39.18 vs. 33.58, P = 0.021). In multivariate analysis these correlations were preserved.

Conclusions: A general weight gain among children was noted, especially in boys during the lockdown, with substantial effect under the age of 6 years. This collateral side-effect should be considered in further quarantine regulations

Original Articles
Tarek Saadi MD, Johad Khoury MD, Widad Toukan MD, Rimma Krimasky, Ella Veitsman MD, Yaacov Baruch MD, Diana Gaitini MD, and Nira Beck-Razi MD

Background: Point shear-wave elastography (pSWE) is a new method to assess the degree of liver fibrosis. It has been shown to be effective in detecting stiffness in viral hepatitis.

Objectives: To determine the feasibility of pSWE for assessing liver stiffness and fibrosis in liver diseases of different etiologies.

Methods: This prospective single-center study included a population of adult patients with chronic liver diseases from different etiologies, who were scheduled for liver biopsy, and a control group of healthy adults who prospectively underwent pSWE. Ten consecutive pSWE measurements of the liver were performed using a Philips iU22 ultrasound system. Stiffness degree was compared to liver biopsy results. Fibrosis degree was staged according to METAVIR scoring system.

Results: The study group was comprised of 202 patients who underwent liver biopsy and pSWE test and a control group consisting of 14 healthy adults who underwent pSWE for validation. In the study group, the median stiffness was 5.35 ± 3.37 kilopascal (kPa). The median stiffness for F0–1, F2, F3, and F4 as determined by liver biopsy results were 4.9 kPa, 5.4 kPa, 5.7 kPa, and 8 kPa, respectively. The median stiffness in the control group was 3.7 ± 0.6 kPa. Subgroup analyses were conducted for viral hepatitis vs. non-viral hepatitis and steatohepatitis vs. non-steatohepatitis groups.

Conclusions: pSWE is a reproducible method for assessing liver stiffness and is in a linear relationship with fibrosis degree as seen in pathology. Compared with patients with non-significant fibrosis, healthy controls showed significantly lower values

Alona Bin-Nun MD, Cathy Hammerman MD, Francis B Mimouni MD, Netanel Wasserteil MD, and Yair M. Kasirer MD

Background: Many countries have adopted a mandatory routine pulse oximetry screening of newborn infants to identify babies with otherwise asymptomatic critical congenital heart disease (CCHD).

Objectives: To describe the current status of pulse oximetry CCHD screening in Israel, with a special emphasis on the experience of the Shaare Zedek Medical Center.

Methods: We review the difficulties of the Israeli Medical system with adopting the SaO2 screening, and the preliminary results of the screening at the Shaare Zedek Medical Center, both in terms of protocol compliance and CCHD detection.

Results: Large scale protocol cannot be implemented in one day, and regular quality assessment programs must take place in order to improve protocol compliance and identify the reasons for protocol failures.

Conclusions: Quality control reviews should be conducted soon after implementation of the screening to allow for prompt diagnosis and quick resolution

Uri Gabbay MD MPH, Doron Carmi MD MHA, Aviva Mimouni-Bloch MD, Bat El Goldstein MD, Lital Keinan-Boker MD MPH, and Joseph Meyerovitch MD

Background: Evaluation of children's anthropometrics poses challenges due to age-related changes. The main focus is on height and weight. However, since weight is height-dependent, body mass index (BMI) is the best surrogate measurement of adiposity. Israel has not developed national growth tables; therefore, researchers and clinicians utilize either World Health Organization (WHO) or U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) tables as benchmarks.

Objectives: To evaluate the anthropometrics of Israeli children benchmarked by CDC and WHO tables.

Methods: A retrospective review was conducted of the 1987–2003 birth cohort (age 4–18 years) from Clalit Health Services databases. Anthropometrics were retrieved twice: at study entry and one year later. We evaluated them as separate cohorts. Gender-specific age-matched median height and BMI were compared with CDC and WHO height and BMI tables.

Results: The study consisted of 15,650, mean age at study entry 9.5 years (range 4–18). Gender-specific median heights of the Israeli children were similar to CDC and WHO values at younger ages, but were slightly shorter than the age-matched CDC and WHO toward the age of final height in both cohorts. However, gender-specific median BMI was considerably and statistically significant higher compared to CDC and WHO values consistently along the entire age range in both cohorts.

Conclusions: Israeli children were slightly shorter toward the age of final height, compared to WHO and CDC. However, BMI in Israeli children was significantly higher compared to the CDC and WHO consistently along the age range, which raises an alarm regarding obesity patterns

Shlomi Rayman MD, Haggai Benvenisti MD, Gali Westrich MD, Gal Schtrechman MD, Aviram Nissan MD, and Lior Segev MD

Background: Medical registries have been shown to be an effective way to improve patient care and reduce costs. Constructing such registries entails extraneous effort of either reviewing medical charts or creating tailored case report forms (CRF). While documentation has shifted from handwritten notes into electronic medical records (EMRs), the majority of information is logged as free text, which is difficult to extract.

Objectives: To construct a tool within the EMR to document patient-related data as codified variables to automatically create a prospective database for all patients undergoing colorectal surgery.

Methods: The hospital's EMR was re-designed to include codified variables within the operative report and patient notes that documented pre-operative history, operative details, postoperative complications, and pathology reports. The EMR was programmed to capture all existing data of interest with manual completion of un-coded variables.

Results: During a 6-month pilot study, 130 patients underwent colorectal surgery. Of these, 104 (80%) were logged into the registry on the same day of surgery. The median time to log the rest of the 26 cases was 1 day. Forty-two patients had a postoperative complication. The most common cause for severe complications was an anastomotic leak with a cumulative rate of 12.3%.

Conclusions: Re-designing the EMR to enable prospective documentation of surgical related data is a valid method to create an on-going, real-time database that is recorded instantaneously with minimal additional effort and minimal cost

Bethlehem Mengesha MD, Daniela Levi MD, Moran Kroonenberg MD, Ronit Koren MD, Ahuva Golik MD, and Shlomit Koren MD

Background: Hypomagnesemia (serum magnesium level < 1.7 mg/dl) occurs more frequently in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM).Serum magnesium levels are not routinely tested in hospitalized patients, including in hospitalized patients with T2DM.

Objectives: To evaluate the prevalence of hypomagnesemia among hospitalized T2DM patients treated with proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) and/or diuretics.

Methods: A total of 263 T2DM patients hospitalized in general departments were included in the study and were further divided into four groups: group 1 (patients not treated with PPIs or diuretics), group 2 (patients treated with PPIs), group 3 (patients treated with diuretics), and group 4 (patients treated with both PPIs and diuretics).  Blood and urine samples were taken during the first 24 hours of admission. Electrocardiogram was performed on admission.

Results: Of the 263 T2DM patients, 58 (22.1%) had hypomagnesemia (serum magnesium level < 1.7 mg/dl). Patients in group 2 had the lowest mean serum magnesium level (1.79 mg/dl ± 0.27). Relatively more patients with hypomagnesemia were found in group 2 compared to the other groups, although a statistically significant difference was not observed. Significantly more patients in group 3 and 4 had chronic renal failure. Patients with hypomagnesemia had significantly lower serum calcium levels.

Conclusions: Hospitalized T2DM patients under PPI therapy are at risk for hypomagnesemia and hypocalcemia

Case communications
Said Abozaid MD, Saray Sity MD, Wael Nasser MD, Avi On MD, and Avi Peretz PhD
Maged Makhoul MD, Roberto Lorusso MD, Elham Bidar MD, Rashad Zayad MD, and Ehsan Natour MD
Letters
Fabiola Atzeni MD PhD, Francesca Marino MD, Mariateresa Cirillo MD, Elisabetta Gerratana MD, Fausto Salaffi MD PhD, and Alessandra Alciati MD
Berko Sikirov MD, Bernard Werner MD, Oren Kaufman MD, Anton Steinberg MD, Victor Gershuni MD, Fredrich Maizlin MD, Yitzhak Yochilis MD, Eliahu Soleiman MD, Bruno Ostfeld MD, Gideon Shapira MD, and Michail Chester MD
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