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Should vasoconstrictors be considered in a cirrhotic patient with acute non-variceal upper gastrointestinal bleeding?

Abstract

Varices manifest as a major etiology of upper gastrointestinal bleeding in patients with chronic liver diseases, such as liver cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma. By contrast, non-variceal upper gastrointestinal bleeding is rare. Pharmacological treatment differs between patients with variceal and non-variceal bleeding. Vasoconstrictors are recommended for the treatment of variceal bleeding, rather than non-variceal bleeding. In contrast, pump proton inhibitors are recommended for the treatment of non-variceal bleeding, rather than variceal bleeding. Herein, we present a case with liver cirrhosis and acute upper gastrointestinal bleeding who had a high risk of rebleeding (i.e., Child–Pugh class C, hepatocellular carcinoma, portal vein thrombosis, low albumin, and high international normalized ratio and D-dimer). As the source of bleeding was obscure, only terlipressin without pump proton inhibitors was initially administered. Acute bleeding episode was effectively controlled. After that, an elective endoscopic examination confirmed that the source of bleeding was attributed to peptic ulcer, rather than varices. Based on this preliminary case report, we further discussed the potential role of vasoconstrictors in a patient with cirrhosis with acute non-variceal upper gastrointestinal bleeding.

Open access
Timing of transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt for Budd-Chiari syndrome: An Italian hepatologist’s perspective

Abstract

Budd-Chiari syndrome (BCS) management flow-chart is derived from experts’ opinion and is not evidence-based. Guidelines suggest BCS management should follow a stepwise strategy: medical therapy as first-line treatment, revascularization or transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt (TIPS) if no response to medical therapy, and liver transplant as rescue therapy. Recent evidence suggests that only medical therapy results in a bad long-term outcome. The biggest criticism of guidelines is the indication that BCS should receive further treatment only when hemodynamic consequences of portal hypertension become clinically evident. Recent data support that in BCS liver fibrosis could arise from chronic microvascular ischemia. A reasoning model of BCS physiopathology is that impaired hepatic vein outflow has hemodynamic consequences on portal hypertension development and causes hepatic fibrosis and liver failure through chronic ischemic damage. On this assumption is the concept that relieving liver congestion could ameliorate liver function and prevent development of BCS complications. Recently, early interventional treatment with TIPS for BCS has been reported to be effective. Early TIPS seems to be the best option for BCS management. Future multicenter controlled studies should compare the outcome of BCS treated with early interventional treatment compared with stepwise strategy.

Open access
Urgent need to define Pretreatment predictors of immune check point inhibitors related endocrinopathies: A case report and review of literature

Abstract

Immune check point inhibitors have revolutionized the treatment of metastatic malignancies. They are a promising area in oncology and more drugs are likely to be available in the coming years. Along with the promise of better response oncologically, there is an increased incidence of endocrinopathies related to autoimmunity. This case report illustrates the dramatic development of hypothyroidism in a patient with underlying subclinical hyperthyroidism. It also suggests the potential pretreatment predictors of endocrinopathies related to these immune check point inhibitors.

Open access
Bronchial wash Gene Xpert MTB/RIF in lower lung field tuberculosis: Sensitive, superior, and rapid in comparison with conventional diagnostic techniques

Abstract

Background

Lower lung field tuberculosis (LLF TB) is an atypical presentation of tuberculosis (TB). LLF TB is common, and a proportionate number of non-resolving pneumonia cases are diagnosed to have pulmonary TB.

Materials and Methods

The prospective observational study was conducted during June 2013 to December 2015 in the Department of Pulmonary Medicine, MIMSR Medical College, Latur, India; the objective of the study is clinical, microbiological, and radiological presentation of LLF TB and the comparison of yield of conventional diagnostic techniques and bronchoscopy-guided modalities in LLF TB. Additional important objective of the study is to find LLF TB in patients with nonresolving pneumonia (NRP). A total of 2,600 patients with pulmonary TB were included in the study after inclusion and exclusion criteria. Ethical clearance was taken from the ethical committee of the institutional review board. Consent was taken from the patients before inclusion in the study. Statistical analysis was done using chi-square test.

Results

In the present study, 300 (11.53%) cases of LLF TB of total 2600 pulmonary tuberculosis were included, females constitutes 66.66% (200/300) with mean age of 58.4 ± 11.8 years and males constitutes 33.34% (100/300) with mean age of 56.8 ± 10.6 years. Constitutional symptoms were observed as cough in 93% cases, fever in 83% cases, shortness of breath in 72% cases, anorexia in 91% cases, and weight loss in 84% cases. Radiological assessment of study cases documented the involvement of right lower zone in 84% cases and left lower zone in only 16% cases. In the studied LLF TB cases, 57 cases (20.66%) were diagnosed by routine sputum microscopic examination for acid fast bacilli (AFB) and 80 cases (28%) were diagnosed by induced sputum microscopic examination for AFB. In the study of 170 LLF TB cases, head-to-head comparison between conventional diagnostic techniques (sputum microscopy and Induced sputum microscopy for AFB) made diagnosis in 60 cases, while bronchoscopy-guided sampling techniques (BAL for AFB and BAL for Gene Xpert MTB/RIF) made diagnosis in 155 cases (91.17%) (P < 0.00001). Comorbid conditions such as human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) coinfection in 36 cases (12.00%), Diabetes mellitus in 64 cases (21.33%), and chronic kidney disease (CKD) in 22 cases (7.33%) were observed. Comorbidities were observed in 41.67% of the studied cases and found very significant assessment to have successful treatment outcome (P < 0.00001). In the study of 300 LLF TB cases, 60 cases were having NRP pattern. In LLF TB cases with NRP pattern, bronchoscopy-guided bronchial wash microscopy for AFB made diagnosis in 18 cases (42%), while bronchoscopy-guided BAL for Gene Xpert MTB/RIF made diagnosis in 58 cases (96.66%) (P < 0.00001).

Conclusion

LLF TB is usually underdiagnosed because of diverse clinical and radiological presentation, less diagnostic yield of conventional diagnostic modalities, and these modalities used routinely and universally. Bronchoscopy-guided diagnostic techniques are superior, sensitive, and reliable to confirm LLF TB. Gene Xpert MTB/RIF in bronchial wash samples is found to be best diagnostic modality in evaluating LLF TB and should be used routinely to have successful treatment outcome. A proportionate number of NRP cases are having LLF TB and a high index of suspicion is a must while evaluating these cases.

Open access
Colorectal stenting for obstruction due to retrorectal tumor in a patient unsuitable for surgery

Abstract

Fund of knowledge on palliative treatment of unresectable retrorectal tumors is scare. Here, we reported a non-surgical treatment of a huge retrorectal malignant tumor in an aged and debilitated patient complicated with colorectal obstruction. An 86-year-old male with severe comorbidities was admitted with acute colorectal obstruction owing to an untreated retrorectal malign epithelial tumor. There was a lobulated retrorectal mass, 20 cm × 15 cm at largest size, extending to the superior iliac bifurcation level, caused an obstruction of the rectal lumen. He was not suitable for surgical excision because of the severe comorbidities. Rectal obstruction was palliated by two self-expandable metallic stents. He tolerated the procedures well and post-procedural course was uneventful. After four months, stents were patent and the patient was continent. Stenting for colorectal obstruction owing to a retrorectal tumor can be feasible in patients who are not suitable for surgery (aged, debilitated, advanced tumor). It avoided the surgical trauma to a high-risk patient and ensured the continuity of continence. As far as we know, this was the first report on colorectal stenting for a retrorectal tumor.

Open access
Effect of pentoxifylline on histological activity and fibrosis of nonalcoholic steatohepatitis patients: A one year randomized control trial

Abstract

Background and Objectives

To observe the effect of Pentoxifylline for 1 year on hepatic histological activity and fibrosis of nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH).

Materials and Methods

A single center, open label Randomized Control Trial. Patients were included if they had ultrasonographic evidence of fatty liver and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease activity score (NAS) ≥ 5 on liver histology. A total of 35 patients were selected; 25 of PL (Experimental) group and 10 of L (Control) group. PL group received 400 mg pentoxifylline thrice daily along with lifestyle modification and there was only lifestyle modification for the L group. After one year, NAS and fibrosis was compared in both groups.

Results

In PL group, NAS improved 2.10 ± 1.07; whereas in L group, NAS was 0.90 ± 0.99 (P = 0.006). As per the protocol analysis, NAS ≥ 2 improved in 15/20 (75%) in PL group and in 3/10 (30%) in L group (P = 0.018). In PL group, the individual component of NAS, steatosis improved from 2.30 ± 0.66 to 0.95 ± 0.76 (P = 0.000), lobular inflammation from 1.65 ± 0.59 to 1.05 ± 0.51 (P = 0.002) and hepatocyte ballooning from 1.50 ± 0.51 to 1.30 ± 0.57 (P = 0.258). In L group, steatosis improved from 2.30 ± 0.68 to 1.40 ± 1.08 (P = 0.01), lobular inflammation and hepatocyte ballooning did not improve. The fibrosis score did not improve in any group. In PL group, NAS improved significantly (P = 0.027; OR=22.76, CI=1.43-362.40) independent of weight reduction.

Conclusion

Pentoxifylline for 1 year improves the hepatic histological activity but not fibrosis of NASH patients.

Open access
H1N1 influenza induced acute respiratory distress syndrome rescued by extracorporeal membrane oxygenation: A case report

Abstract

Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO) is now a recognized revolutionary technology, which has emerged as a life-saving therapeutic option for patients with potentially reversible severe respiratory failure who fail to respond positively with the conventional ventilation therapy. Severe acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) is associated with high morbidity and mortality, and ECMO has been proven to increase the survival rates in these patients by improving the gas exchange and thus preventing the further hypoxia and catecholamine induced multi-organ damage. The authors present a case of H1N1 influenza related severe ARDS who was successfully rescued by the early use of ECMO. The authors recommend the early use of ECMO to be incorporated in the management of severe refractory ARDS caused due to a potentially reversible cause.

Open access
Hepatitis C virus exposure rate among health-care workers in rural Lower Egypt governorates

Abstract

Background and Objectives

Studies on hepatitis C virus (HCV) in Egypt supported a strong role for various exposures in the health-care setting. In this study, we attempted to estimate the frequency of HCV exposure among Egyptian health-care workers (HCWs).

Methods

Five hundred and sixty-four (564) HCWs were included in this study. Two hundred and fifty-eight (45.74%) were health-care providers and 306 (54.25%) were non-health-care providers. All HCWs completed both the study questionnaire and provided a blood sample for anti-HCV testing by third-generation enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Subsequently, anti-HCV-positive samples were tested for HCV RNA using nested polymerase chain reaction (PCR).

Results

The mean age of included HCWs was 33.0 ± 9.8 years; of them, 319 (56.56%) were males and 245 (43.44%) were females. The mean duration of health-care work was 9.3 ± 6.7 years. The frequency of antibody against hepatitis C virus (anti-HCV) among included HCWs was 8.7% (n = 49). Old age and prolonged duration of health-care work were significantly associated with anti-HCV seropositivity. Forty (81.63%) of 49 with anti-HCV-positive HCWs had positive hepatitis C viremia. The frequency of HCV RNA positivity increased with age. The frequency of eradicated past infection among nurses (36.85%) was markedly higher than that (6.7%) detected in non-health-care providers.

Conclusion

High rate of HCV infection is detected in Egyptian HCWs in rural Lower Egypt governorates. Health-care providers seem to eradicate HCV infection more frequently than non-health-care providers. National screening and treatment of infected HCWs are recommended.

Open access