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Open access

Sankalp Yadav and Gautam Rawal

Abstract

The waterpipe tobacco smoking is an ancient form of smoking that is present in the society since centuries. The majority of consumers of this exotic activity are still unaware of the serious consequences that this type of smoking has on the health of the smoker. The paucity of data related to the prevalence and extent of this habit in the society is still not available. In this present short review, the authors try to highlight this serious health issue and suggest preventive measures.

Open access

Xiangbo Xu, Zhaohui Bai, Qingchun Zhao, Hongyu Li, Qiang Shi, Jiao Deng, Jingqiao Zhang, Xiaozhong Guo and Xingshun Qi

Abstract

Acute-on-chronic liver failure (ACLF) is a potentially lethal syndrome, which is characterized by an acute deterioration of liver function in patients with chronic liver diseases. The present paper reported that an alcoholic cirrhotic patient with ACLF developed septic shock, hydrothorax, ascites, hepatic encephalopathy, acute kidney injury, and acute upper gastrointestinal bleeding at the same hospitalization and was successfully rescued by pharmacotherapy alone without any invasive intervention.

Open access

Ningning Zhu, Dijiong Wu and Baodong Ye

Abstract

Aplastic anemia (AA) is a common hematologic disease that is characterized by hematopoietic failure of the bone marrow and pancytopenia of the peripheral blood, which can be divided into severe and non-severe aplastic ane-mia, or acute and chronic aplastic anemia according to the severity of the disease and the progress of the clinical course. During the past years, the advantages of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) on the treatment of AA have been well clarified and its theory system has been improved as well. This review is mainly on representing the pathogenesis, therapeutic principle and method, research progression, and advantages of TCM on AA.

Open access

Sophie Samyn, Marielle Morissens, Ahmed Sanoussi and José Castro Rodriguez

Abstract

Reinterventions for surgery complications in adult patients with complex congenital heart disease are often difficult and have a high operative risk. If anatomically possible, a percutaneous approach is an alternative to surgery. We report the case of a 36 year-old patient who underwent surgery for a double outlet right ventricle with transposition of the great arteries and pulmonary stenosis. On the days following the surgery, the patient was hemodynamically unstable due to a stenosis of the intraventricular Dacron conduit between the left ventricle and the aorta. Because of the fragility of the patient, additional surgery was not possible and a percutaneous approach was preferred. A Cheatham Platinum stent mounted on a balloon-in-balloon catheter was implanted with success in the stenotic intraventricular Dacron conduit.

Open access

Dimitrios Velissaris, Nikolaos-Dimitrios Pantzaris, Anastasia Skroumpelou, Panagiotis Polychronopoulos, Vasilios Karamouzos, Charalampos Pierrakos, Charalampos Gogos and Menelaos Karanikolas

Abstract

Objective

To evaluate the electroencephalographic (EEG) findings and correlate EEG findings with inflammatory biomarkers and the sepsis prognostic scores SOFA, SAPS II and APACHE II in patients who present in the Emergency Department with sepsis without clinical central nervous system involvement.

Methods

The study included seventeen patients (< 70 years old) with sepsis without central nervous system involvement presenting in the Emergency Department of the University Hospital of Patras, Greece. All patients underwent neurologic examination and EEG analysis on admission to the hospital and were treated according to the international guideline protocols for sepsis.

Results

Six of seventeen sepsis patients had mild or moderate EEG abnormalities. We did not find any significant correlation between EEG abnormalities and inflammatory biomarkers (CRP, WBC) or commonly used prognostic sepsis scores.

Conclusions

EEG could serve as a useful tool to identify brain alterations at an early stage in sepsis, before clinical sings of encephalopathy can be detected. However, the presence of EEG abnormalities does not correlate with sepsis severity as measured by the commonly used prognostic sepsis scores SOFA, APACHE II or SAPS II. Because this was a small single center observational study, large multi-center studies are warranted to confirm these findings.

Open access

David De Bels, Charalampos Pierrakos, Herbert D. Spapen and Patrick M. Honore

Open access

Jawaid Iqbal, Muhammad Ali Khalid, Farina M. Hanif, Rajesh Mandhwani, Syed Mudassir Laeeq, Zain Majid and Nasir Hassan Luck

Abstract

Background

Renal dysfunction is one of the dreaded complications of cirrhosis. MELD is a validated chronic liver disease (CLD) severity scoring system. Urinary (U) Na/K ratio closely correlates with renal dysfunction in terms of low GFR in cirrhotic patients.

Patients and Methods

All consecutive patients with decompensated cirrhosis between the age of 18 to 70 years, of either gender, presenting in the outpatients’ department of Sindh Institute of Urology and Transplantation, Karachi, from June 2015 to June 2017 were included. The MELD score was calculated and the UNa/K ratio less than 1 was taken as surrogate marker of renal dysfunction. Statistical analysis was performed by SPSS (version 20.0).

Results

A total of 71 patients were enrolled. The mean age was 43.79 years and majority were male (67.6%). The most common cause of liver cirrhosis was HCV, found in 42 (59.2%) patients. The mean CTP score was 10.48 ± 2.069 (range: 6–14) with majority of the patients following in class C, that is, 48 (67.6%). Mean MELD score was 21.75 ± 8.96 (range: 8–43). In 57 patients (80.3%), MELD score was > 15.The mean serum creatinine and mean serum sodium were 1.5 ± 1.1 mg/dl (range: 0.37–5.3) and 133.79 ± 6.9 mmol/L (range: 112–152), respectively. Mean urinary sodium and urinary potassium were 38.60 ± 46.64 mmol/L (range: 5–181) and 38.15 ± 23.9 mmol/L (range: 4.3–112), respectively. In majority of study population, UNa/K ratio was below 1, that is, in 52 patients (73.2%). Statistically significant correlation was documented between MELD score and UNa/K ratio (ɤ = 0.34, P = 0.004).

Conclusion

The inverse correlation between MELD scores and UNa/K ratio indicates that patients with CLD and higher MELD scores might have renal dysfunction. This finding however should be corroborated by large scale studies.

Open access

Rebecca J. Fisk, Disha Kumar, Daniel R. Murphy and Monisha Arya

Open access

Tuba Tülay Koca

Abstract

Background and Objective

Bilirubin (Bb) is the product of the intravascular compartment of catabolic pathway. In a small number of clinical trials, it has been shown that Bb molecules are associated with cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, cancer, autoimmune (lupus, rheumatoid arthritis) diseases and schizophrenia. Behçet's disease is a chronic, multisystemic, inflammatory vasculitis that was first described by Hulusi Behçet in 1937, which affects almost all organs and systems without any known aetiology. Here, we investigated the clinical significance of serum Bb as a biomarker in the patients with Behçet's disease.

Methods

Seventy-one (N = 71) patients with Behcet's diagnosis within the last 1 year were included retrospectively. Control group consisted of 75 subjects with similar age and sex distribution. Serum Bb, indirect Bb, total Bb, aspartate aminotransferase (AST), alanine aminotransferase (ALT), alkaline phosphatase (ALP) and erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR) and C-reactive protein (CRP) data were recorded from the hospital records.

Results

In the Behçet group, direct Bb was significantly lower (P = 0.011), ESR and CRP were significantly higher (P = 0.00). No significant differences were observed in other parameters. In the whole group, total Bb and indirect Bb were negatively correlated with ESR (P = 0.025, P = 0.01). Direct Bb was negatively correlated with CRP (P = 0.002). For the diagnosis of Behçet, direct Bb with a threshold of < 0.14 can be used as a diagnostic test (P = 0.000) with 70% sensitivity, 68% specificity (area under the curve = 0.69; 95% confidence interval 0.59–0.80) in ROC curve analysis.

Conclusion

According to our study, we found that inflammatory markers were high and direct Bb values were low in patients with Behcet's disease. In addition, Bb parameters were negatively associated with acute phase reactants. As a practical biomarker with anti-oxidative properties, the direct Bb can be used to diagnose and clinical follow-up in cases with Behçet's disease.

Open access

Weili Men, Haijuan Xiao, Zhiping Yang and Daiming Fan

Abstract

By retrieving the 1900–2016 medical education-related essays from the web of science database, UCINET software was used to build the national cooperation network and its nested visualization software, and NetDraw was used to visualize the country cooperation networks in different time windows. We found that international medical education papers began to show exponential growth until 1945 and international cooperation did not begin to become dense until 1961. With the increasing number of participating countries in international medical education, the cooperation factions formed more complicated. The intensity of international cooperation between the United States, Britain and other major international medical education powers has been declining from 1991 to 2016. Between Brazil and China, during 1996–2016, the center of cooperation network has been on the rise for a long time, and the intensity of Canada's cooperation in medical education research has been on the rise for nearly 25 years. The center of international medical education is gradually being transferred from the United States to Canada.