Ilaria Duca MD, Bruno Lucchino MD, Francesca Romana Spinelli MD PhD, Alessio Altobelli MD, Carmelo Pirone MD, Chiara Gioia MD, Guido Valesini MD, Fabrizio Conti MD PhD, and Manuela Di Franco MD
Background: In rheumatoid arthritis (RA), females usually have a worse prognosis. To date, the influence of physician gender in the evaluation of RA activity is still largely unknown.
Objectives: To investigate the discrepancy in RA disease activity assessment between male and female physicians and to compare patient and evaluator perception of disease activity and global health (GH) status.
Methods: One female and one male rheumatologist evaluated 154 RA patients recording tender and swollen joint count, GH, evaluator global assessment (EGA), and patient global assessment (PGA) disease activity. A third rheumatologist calculated DAS28, CDAI, and SDAI. Difference was evaluated by Wilcoxon test. Physician–patient agreement was assessed by intraclass correlation coefficient.
Results: GH, PGA, and DAS28 were higher when recorded by the female examiner. Male EGA was higher than female. Among male patients, PGA was higher when collected by the female examiner. The probability of being judged as having an active disease did not rely on physician gender. The agreement with the physician’s evaluation of disease activity was high. PGA values were higher than EGA in both examiners. The physician–patient agreement was moderate for the male examiner and good for the female. The female physician had a higher agreement with both genders.
Conclusions: Subjective measure of disease activity differs between female and male rheumatologists, contributing to a different evaluation of disease activity. Patients have a higher perception of disease activity compared to physicians. The stronger agreement between female physicians and patients may be related to a more emphatic setting established by the female physician
Andrei Braester MD, Alexander Shturman MD, Bennidor Raviv MD, Lev Dorosinsky MD, Eyal Rosenthal MD, and Shaul Atar MD
Background: Mean platelet volume (MPV), an essential component of the complete blood count (CBC) indices, is underutilized in common practice. In recent years, MPV has drawn strong interest, especially in clinical research. During inflammation, the MPV has a higher value because of platelet activation.
Objectives: To verify whether high MPV values discovered incidentally in healthy naïve patients indicates the development or the presence of cardiovascular risk factors, particularly metabolic syndrome and pre-diabetes.
Methods: A cohort study was used to assess the diagnostic value of high MPV discovered incidentally, in naïve patients (without any known cause of an abnormal high MPV, greater than upper limit of the normal range, such as active cardiovascular diseases and metabolic syndrome).
Results: The mean MPV value in the patient group was 12.3 femtoliter. There was a higher incidence of metabolic syndrome in our research group than in the general population and a non-significant tendency of pre-diabetes. Family doctors more frequently meet naïve patients with high MPV than a hospital doctor. The results of our study are more relevant for him, who should know the relevance of such a finding and search for a hidden pre-diabetes or metabolic syndrome.
Conclusions: High MPV values discovered incidentally in healthy naïve subjects suggest the development or the presence of cardiovascular risk factors, particularly metabolic syndrome and pre-diabetes. No statistically significant association was found between MPV and the presence of cardiovascular disease
Meydan Ben Ishai MD, Michal Schaap Fogler MD, Rita Ehrlich MD, Noa Geffen MD, Orly Gal-Or MD, Irit Bahar MD MHA, and Gad Dotan MD
Background: Eye trauma is an unfortunate and often preventable cause of vision loss. Confetti cannons are common causes of injury. Awareness of ocular hazards of confetti cannons remains low because of limited reports describing ophthalmic injuries following their use.
Objectives: To describe outcomes of ocular trauma caused by confetti cannons and to increase recognition of their ocular risks.
Methods: A retrospective analysis was conducted of eye injuries caused by confetti cannons presenting to a single medical center between 2016 and 2020. Data collected included age, gender, eye injured, ocular damage, visual outcome, and details of surgeries performed.
Results: Overall, six consecutive patients (2 males, mean age 19.5 ± 9.74 years) were identified and studied. In all patients only one eye was injured (3 right eyes) during a private celebration, most commonly (n=5) to a bystander while in the vicinity of a cannon operated by someone else. Most common eye injuries included corneal erosion (n=4), traumatic hyphema (n=4), and retinal edema (n=3). Mean initial logMAR visual acuity in the injured eye was 0.73 ± 0.18, improving to 0.25 ± 0.16 at the final visit (P = 0.125). Two patients underwent eye surgery due to their trauma: one to repair globe penetration and another to undergo intravitreal injection of tissue plasminogen activator and C3F8 for submacular hemorrhage, followed 8 months later by intravitreal bevacizumab injection for choroidal neovascularization.
Conclusions: Confetti cannons pose hazards that can cause severe ocular trauma resulting in permanent vision loss. Increasing awareness of device hazards is necessary to prevent eye injuries
Dana Zelnik Yovel MD, Galina Goltsman MD, Itamar Y love MD, Noam Darnell MD, and Micha J. Rapoport MD
Background: The recent increase in enterococcal urinary tract infections (EUTI) and the potential morbidity and mortality associated with inappropriate antimicrobial treatment underscores the need for early risk assessment and institution of appropriate empirical antimicrobial therapy.
Objectives: To identify high-risk features associated with hospitalized patients with EUTI.
Methods: Demographic, clinical, laboratory, and bacteriological data of 285 patients hospitalized with UTI during 2016 were retrieved from the computerized database of Shamir Medical Center. Patients were divided into two groups: EUTI and non-EUTI (NEUTI), according to the presence or absence of enterococcus in the urine culture. The features of the two groups were compared.
Results: We obtained 300 urine cultures from 285 patients. Of the total, 80 patients (26.6%) had EUTI and 220 patients (73.3%) had NEUTI. A higher prevalence of urinary multi-bacterial cultures was found in EUTI compared to NEUTI patients (P < 0.01). Higher prevalence of permanent indwelling urinary catheter and dementia were found in hospitalized patients with community-acquired EUTI and nosocomial EUTI respectively (P = 0.02, P = 0.016) compared to patients with NEUTI.
Conclusions: Indwelling urinary catheter and dementia are risk factors for EUTI in patients with community and hospital acquired infection, respectively
Miki Paker MD, Tal Goldman MD, Muhamed Masalha MD, Lev Shlizerman MD, Salim Mazzawi MD, Dror Ashkenazi MD, and Rami Ghanayim MD
Background: The 2015 American Thyroid Association (ATA2015) and the American College of Radiology Thyroid Imaging and Reporting Data System (ACR TI-RADS) are two widely used thyroid sonographic systems.
Objectives: To compare the two systems for accuracy of cancer risk prediction.
Methods: Preoperative ultrasound images from 265 patients who underwent thyroidectomy at our hospital from January 2012 to March 2019 were retrospectively categorized by the ACR TI-RADS and ATA2015 systems. Diagnostic performances were compared.
Results: Of 238 nodules assessed, 115 were malignant. Malignancy risks for the five ACR TI-RADS categories were 0%, 7.5%, 11.4%, 59.6%, and 90.0%. Malignancy risks for the five ATA2015 categories were 0%, 6.8%, 17.0%, 55.5%, and 92.1%. The proportion of total nodules biopsied was higher with the ATA2015 system than the ACR TI-RADS system: 88.7% vs. 66.3%. Proportions of malignant nodules and benign nodules biopsied were higher with ATA2015 than with ACR TI-RADS: 93.3% vs. 87.8% and 84.4% vs. 46.3%, respectively. Specificity and sensitivity rates were 53.6% and 84.3%, respectively, for ACR TI-RADS, and 15.5% and 93.3%, respectively, for ATA2015. The two systems showed similarly accurate diagnostic performance (AUC > 0.88). False negative rates for ACR TI-RADS and ATA2015 were 15.6% and 6.6%, respectively. Rates of missed aggressive cancer were similar for the two systems: 3.4% and 3.7%, respectively.
Conclusion: ACR TI-RADS was superior to ATA2015 in specificity and avoiding unnecessary biopsies. ATA2015 yielded better sensitivity and a lower false negative rate. Identification of aggressive cancers was identical in the two systems
Tal David Berger MD, Anna Gorodnichenko MD, Akiva Fradkin MD, and Batia Weiss MD
Background: Adequate dietary habits and physical activity during childhood and adolescence may promote growth and cognitive development and contribute to the prevention of chronic disease in later life. School is considered an important social environment that can promote healthy eating habits and life-style changes.
Objectives: To evaluate the effects of a school-based intervention on nutritional knowledge, eating habits, and physical activity of adolescents.
Methods: We conducted a prospective questionnaire-based study. Anonymous questionnaires were administered at the beginning of the academic year (September 2014) in one high school. During the following year, vending machines containing milk products were installed within the school facility, and students were given two informative nutrition lectures regarding proper nutrition for age, calcium requirement and importance, and physical activity. One active sports day was initiated. At the beginning of the following academic year (September 2015), the students completed the same questionnaires.
Results: The study was comprised of 330 teenagers, mean age 15.1 ± 1.39 years, 53% males. Response rate was 83.6% ± 0.4% to multiple choice questions, 60.7% ± 0.5% to multiple section tables, and 80.3% ± 0.9% to open questions. Post-intervention, respondents reported an increase in eating breakfast (57% vs. 47.5%, P = 0.02) and a decrease in purchasing food at school (61.6% vs. 54.3%, P = 0.03). No changes were observed in consumption of milk products, knowledge regarding calcium and vegetable consumption, or sports activities.
Conclusions: Short-term high school-based interventions may lead to improvements in eating habits but are not sufficient for changing nutritional knowledge and physical activity
Nir Kugelman MD, Ofer Lavie MD, Nadav Cohen MD, Meirav Schmidt MD, Amit Reuveni MD, Ludmila Ostrovsky MD, Hawida Dabah MA, and Yakir Segev MSc MD
Background: Enhanced recovery after surgery (ERAS) protocols are evidence-based protocols designed to standardize medical care, improve outcomes, and lower healthcare costs.
Objectives: To evaluate the implementation of the ERAS protocol and the effect on recovery during the hospitalization period after gynecological laparotomy surgeries.
Methods: We compared demographic and clinical data of consecutive patients at a single institute who underwent open gynecological surgeries before (August 2017 to December 2018) and after (January 2019 to March 2020) the implementation of the ERAS protocol. Eighty women were included in each group.
Results: The clinical and demographic characteristics were similar among the women operated before and after implementation of the ERAS protocol. Following implementation of the protocol, decreases were observed in post-surgical hospitalization (from 4.89 ± 2.56 to 4.09 ± 1.65 days, P = 0.01), in patients reporting nausea symptoms (from 18 (22.5%) to 7 (8.8%), P = 0.017), and in the use of postoperative opioids (from 77 (96.3%) to 47 (58.8%), P < 0.001). No significant changes were identified between the two periods regarding vomiting, 30-day re-hospitalization, and postoperative minor and major complications.
Conclusions: Implementation of the ERAS protocol is feasible and was found to result in less postoperative opioid use, a faster return to normal feeding, and a shorter postoperative hospital stay. Implementation of the protocol implementation was not associated with an increased rate of complications or with re-admissions
Hayim Gilshtein MD, Mariya Neymark MD, Asaf Harbi MD, Myroslav Lutsyk MD, and Daniel Duek MD
Background: The learning curve for transition from open to laparoscopic proctectomies is difficult. Most surgeons have considerable laparoscopic experience prior to performing robotic-assisted procedures. There are data regarding the transition from open to robotic proctectomies. Minimally invasive anterior resection for rectal cancer has gained widespread popularity in recent years, especially when using a robotic platform.
Objectives: To analyze the experience to the transition from open to robotic anterior resection for rectal cancer.
Methods: We performed a retrospective analysis of a computerized database. All patients who had a robotic-assisted proctectomy between December 2016 and March 2019 were included and were compared to patients who underwent an open anterior resection in the same time period. A single experienced colorectal surgeon with no prior experience in colorectal laparoscopic surgery performed the procedures.
Results: During the study period, 55 patients underwent robotic-assisted proctectomy and 55 had an open proctectomy. Patients had similar pre-operative demographic and clinical characteristics with the majority of patients receiving neoadjuvant chemoradiation. The surgical time was significantly lower in the open surgery group (168 minutes vs. 310 minutes, P = 0.005). Both the surgical and pathological outcomes did not differ significantly between the two groups, with good short-term oncologic outcomes and low complication rates.
Conclusions: The transition from open to robotic-assisted proctectomy is feasible and safe and provides a good alternative for undertaking a minimally invasive surgery for the experienced open colorectal surgeon
Elizaveta Kouniavski MD, Eran Hadad MD, and Lior Heller MD
Background: Breast implant illness (BII) is a rising concern among many patients. Although not fully understood, a connection between silicone breast implants and systemic diseases may be present. This connection may influence the types of breast surgeries performed.
Objectives: To evaluate changing trends in breast surgeries in Israel over time, with regard to implantation, explantation, and implant exchange surgeries.
Methods: In this ecological study, we presented data from four private medical centers in Israel regarding the number of breast implant surgeries performed in the years 2018–2019. Data were collected bi-yearly. The types of surgeries included breast implantation, explantation, and breast implant exchange.
Results: When we summed and compared the yearly data, we saw that the number of implantations in 2018 was 2267 (80.1% of breast implant procedures that year), and 1929 (68.9%) in 2019. The number of implant exchanges in 2018 and 2019 was 482 (17.0%) and 608 (21.7%), respectively. In 2018, 80 (2.8%) explantations were performed and 262 (9.4%) in 2019.
Conclusions: There appears to be a trend in the rise of implant removal surgeries in addition to a decrease in breast implantations. One possible reason may be patient concerns of BII. Another reason may be the increased public interest and discussion about systemic effects of breast implants. More research is needed in this field to achieve better understanding of the phenomenon, the reasons behind it, and the possible solutions and ways of treatment