Clinical Neuroscience

[Meeting of the management of Hungarian Epilepsy League]

SZUPERA Zoltán

JANUARY 25, 2013

Clinical Neuroscience - 2013;66(01-02)

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Clinical Neuroscience

[The significance of high-resolution ultrasonography in the diagnosis of peripheral nerve disorders]

SCHEIDL Erika, JOSEF Böhm, FARBAKY Zsófia, DEBRECZENI Róbert, BERECZKI Dániel, ARÁNYI Zsuzsanna

[High resolution ultrasonography is an emerging technique for the investigation of peripheral nerves and is increasingly used worldwide in the diagnosis of peripheral nerve disorders, however, until now it is not widespread in Hungary. According to the literature this method is especially useful in entrapment neuropathies, traumatic peripheral nerve injuries, tumors of the peripheral nerves and sonographically guided interventions. Ultrasonography allows precise morphological analysis and quantitative measurements of the nerves providing useful complementary information to electrodiagnostic data. In entrapment neuropathies ultrasound shows nerve swelling mainly proximal to the sites of compression and a focal change of echotexture. On longitudinal scan, an abrupt caliber change and spindle-like swelling of the compressed nerve segment can be seen. Evaluation of the anatomical background and visualisation of the postoperative and posttraumatic changes provide useful information for planning of the therapy. Ultrasound may be of significant help in localizing the pathological nerve segment when it is at an electrophysiologically inaccessible site or when substantial secondary axonal loss precludes precise electrophysiological localization and it might even show pathological changes when nerve conduction studies are normal. Contrary to electrophysiological investigation ultrasonography might discover neurotmesis in the akute phase of traumatic nerve injuries indicating the necessity of surgical intervention. We provide a summary of the main indications and further application areas of this method.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[The presentation of a transient hyperintense lesion with legionnaires disease in a patient, is it a coincidance or an incidental finding?]

EDA Çoban Kiliç, SELMA Aksoy, AHMET Riza Sahin, NURAY Uzun, MÜNEVVER Gökyigit

[Up to date the presentation of transient splenial lesions in corpus callosum were reported in diffusion weighted magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) only in epileptic patients and patients under antiepileptic therapy. A 41 year old male with no previous medical history was admitted to our clinic with symptoms of pneumonia. The neurological exam revealed stupor, but when awake his speech and orientation were normal. There were no meningeal irritation signs, cranial nerves, piramidal and cerebellar functions were normal. He had moderate respiratory distress and had bilateral rales in lower lobes while oscultating. Laboratory tests revealed high liver function levels and high acute phase reactants. Arterial blood levels showed hypoxemia. A brain MRI showed a hypointensity in the splenium of corpus callosum on T1 weighted images. There was markedly increased signal in this region on diffusion weighted imaging and hypointense on ADC. The lesion was slightly hyperintense on T2 and FLAIR weighted images. A repeat brain MRI was done 30 days after the initial study and showed a complete resolution of the splenial lesion. Transient splenial lesions can be seen due to different mechanisms in different clinical settings. It should be noted that these lesions are mostly reversible. Unnecessary therapies and procedures should be avoided in these lesions.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Aspirin and clopidogrel resistance: possible mechanisms and clinical relevance. Part II: Potential causes and laboratory tests]

VADÁSZ Dávid, SZTRIHA K. László, SAS Katalin, VÉCSEI László

[Recent meta-analyses have indicated that patients with vascular disease demonstrated by laboratory tests to be aspirin or clopidogrel-resistant are at an increased risk of major vascular events. The suggested mechanisms of aspirin resistance include genetic polymorphism, alternative pathways of platelet activation, aspirin-insensitive thromboxane biosynthesis, drug interactions, or a low aspirin dose. Clopidogrel resistance is likely to develop as a result of a decreased bioavailability of the active metabolite, due to genetic variation or concomitant drug treatment. Additional work is required to improve and validate laboratory tests of platelet function, so that they may become useful tools for selection of the most appropriate antiplatelet therapy for an individual patient. Improvements in antiplatelet treatment strategies in the future should lead to a reduction in premature vascular events.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Experiences with a self developed accelerometer]

VÉR Csilla, HOFGÁRT Gergely, SZIMA Gábor, KOVÁCS GÁBOR, NYISZTOR Zoltán, KARDOS László, CSIBA László

[Objective - In neurology the objective evaluation of improvement of paresis on every-day practice. The aim of this study was to develope and test a small 3-d acceleration measuring device and validate its usefulness. Patients and methods - We collected data from 17 mild and medium severity hemiparetic, bedridden acute ischaemic and hemorrhagic stroke patients and compared with data of 22 control subjects. The devices were attached to the paretic and non-paretic extremities and any movements (m/s2) and movement-durations were registered (24h). The data of movement-monitors were compared also with the changes of National Institute of Health Stroke Scale and European Stroke Scale. The electromiograph-sensor of polysomnograph has been used for validation. Results - Mild differences could be found in the use of dominant and non-dominant upper extremities of control persons. The control persons used their upper extremities more frequently than the stroke patients. Our data showed significant correlation with National Institute of Health Stroke Scale. Higher values on the scores were accompanied with less intensive use of extremities. We found a correlation between the consiousness level of patients and their activity of upper extremities. If the patients had severe consiousness disturbances they used significantly less their upper extremities. Conclusion - Our device sensitively detected the movement-differences between paretic and non-paretic extremities and can be used for quantitative evaluation of patient's neurological and consciousness status.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Early mental test - developing a screening test for mild cognitive impairment]

KÁLMÁN János, PÁKÁSKI Magdolna, HOFFMANN Ildikó, DRÓTOS Gergely, DARVAS Gyöngyi, BODA Krisztina, BENCSIK Tamás, GYIMESI Alíz, GULYÁS Zsófia, BÁLINT Magdolna, SZATLÓCZKI Gréta, PAPP Edina

[Background and purpose - Mild cognitive impairment (MCI) is a heterogenous syndrome considered as a prodromal state of dementia with clinical importance in the early detection of Alzheimer’s Disease. We are currently developing an MCI screening instrument, the Early Mental Test (EMT) suitable to the needs of primary care physicians. The present study describes the validation process of the 6.2 version of the test. Methods - Only subjects (n=132, female 95, male 37) over the age of 55 (mean age 69.2 years (SD=6.59)) scoring at least 20 points on Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE), mean education 11.17 years (SD=3.86) were included in the study. The psychometric evaluation consisted of Alzheimer’s Disease Assessment Scale Cognitive subscale (ADAS-Cog) and the 6.2 version of EMT. The statistical analyses were carried out using the 17.00 version of SPSS statistical package. Results - The optimalised cut-off point was found to be 3.45 points with corresponding 69% sensitivity, 69% specificity and 69% accuracy measures. The Cronbach-α, that describes the internal consistence of the test was 0.667, which is higher as compared with the same category in the case of the ADASCog (0.446). A weak negative rank correlation was found between the total score of EMT 6.2 and the age of probands (rs=-0.25, p=0.003). Similarly, only a weak correlation was found between the education levels and the total score of EMT 6.2 (rs=0.31, p<0.001). Two of the subtests, the repeated delayed short-time memory and the letter fluency test with a motorical distraction task had significantly better power to separate MCI and control groups than the other subtests of the EMT. Conclusion - The 6.2 version of EMT is a fast and simple detector of MCI with a similar sensitivity-specificity profile to the MMSE, but this version of the test definitely needs further development.]

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Clinical Neuroscience

[Zonisamide: one of the first-line antiepileptic drugs in focal epilepsy ]

JANSZKY József, HORVÁTH Réka, KOMOLY Sámuel

[Chronic administration of antiepileptic drugs without history of unprovoked epileptic seizures are not recommended for epilepsy prophylaxis. Conversely, if the patient suffered the first unprovoked seizure, then the presence of epileptiform discharges on the EEG, focal neurological signs, and the presence of epileptogenic lesion on the MRI are risk factors for a second seizure (such as for the development of epilepsy). Without these risk factors, the chance of a second seizure is about 25-30%, while the presence of these risk factors (for example signs of previous stroke, neurotrauma, or encephalitis on the MRI) can predict >70% seizure recurrence. Thus the International League Against Epilepsy (ILAE) re-defined the term ’epilepsy’ which can be diagnosed even after the first seizure, if the risk of seizure recurrence is high. According to this definition, we can start antiepileptic drug therapy after a single unprovoked seizure. There are four antiepileptic drugs which has the highest evidence (level „A”) as first-line initial monotherapy for treating newly diagnosed epilepsy. These are: carbamazepine, phenytoin, levetiracetam, and zonisamide (ZNS). The present review focuses on the ZNS. Beacuse ZNS can be administrated once a day, it is an optimal drug for maintaining patient’s compliance and for those patients who have a high risk for developing a non-compliance (for example teenagers and young adults). Due to the low interaction potential, ZNS treatment is safe and effective in treating epilepsy of elderly people. ZNS is an ideal drug in epilepsy accompanied by obesity, because ZNS has a weight loss effect, especially in obese patients.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Clinical neurophysiological methods in diagnosis and treatment of cerebrovascular diseases]

NAGY Ildikó, FABÓ Dániel

[Neurophysiological methods are gaining ground in the diagnosis and therapy of cerebrovascular disease. While the role of the EEG (electroencephalography) in the diagnosis of post-stroke epilepsy is constant, quantitative EEG para-meters, as new indicators of early efficiency after thrombolysis or in prognosis of patient’s condition have proved their effectiveness in several clinical studies. In intensive care units, continuous EEG monitoring of critically ill patients became part of neurointenzive care protocols. SSEP (somatosesnsory evoked potencial) and EEG performed during carotid endarterectomy, are early indicative intraoperativ neuromonitoring methods of poor outcome. Neurorehabilitation is a newly discovered area of neurophysiology. Clinical studies have demonstrated the effectiveness of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) in the rehabilitation of stroke patients. Brain computer interface mark the onset of modern rehabi-litation, where the function deficit is replaced by robotic tehnology. ]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Oligoepilepsy: a real entity or the benign form of epileptic disorder?]

RAJNA Péter, SÓLYOM András

[Background and purpose - Although oligoepilepsy (OLE) is a used term in many protocols, guidelines and the everyday routine, it is found practically nowhere in the scientific literature. The aim of our study is to investigate and evaluate of the main characteristics of his subcategory of epilepsy. We try to find answer to the basic question of not only theoretical but also great practical importance whether the OLE does really exist, is it an independent entity of epilepsy or only its general benign clinical presentation. Methods - We considered OLE if the patients had two seizures maximally in the last year of their course. We counted only the two most severe clinical types, the generalized tonic-clonic and the complex partial seizures. We divided the OLE into two subtypes: those patients who had OLE from the beginning of their epilepsy (OLE1) and those ones, in whom the OLE was the result of the treatment (OLE2). We analysed retrospectively the data of 817 “OLE-suspicious” patients taken from our EPIMED database Results - We found 47 patients met the inclusion criteria (OLE1=34, OLE2=13). OLE patients did not differ from the general epileptic population according to the age and gender, the type of seizures, the electro-clinical diagnosis and the possible cause of their first seizure. But we found statistically significant differences in two measures. In OLE, far less seizure provoking factors were found in the sporadic seizures. Concerning the social conditions: while the range of employees was equal, the vast majority of OLE patients were able to work at their level of education. Conclusion - We found that more than 5% of people with epilepsy can belong to the OLE category. In the majority of OLE patients the seizure frequency is low from the beginning of the disease. The sporadic seizures in OLE are generally not provoked. The chances of OLE patients in the world of job are better for the OLE patients. In our opinion OLE rather seems to be an independent entity among epilepsy. Therefore larger prospective studies are needed to the exact description of OLE and to establish the special standards for the everyday medical practice.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Vinpocetin in neurological diseases]

SZAPÁRY László, KÉSMÁRKY Gábor, TÓTH Kálmán, MISNYOVSZKY Melinda, TÓTH Tímea, BALOGH Ágnes, NAGY Krisztián, NÉMETH György, FEHÉR Gergely

[Introduction - Stroke is the third leading cause of death worldwide (following cardiovascular and cancer mortality) and associated with serious disability for the vast majority of patients. There is no salvage therapy for irreversibly damaged brain areas, improving the circulation of the surrounding hypoperfused territories may be associated with benefitial clinical states. Cerebral hypoperfusion may play a role in the pathogenesis of other kind of neurological diseases, improvement of global circulation may have a preventive effect on these conditions. Aims - The aim of our study was to review the experimental and clinical articles focusing on the role of vinpocetin in different neurological conditions. Results - Vinpocetin appears to have several different mechanisms of action that allow for its antiinflammatory, antioxidant, vasodilating, antiepileptic and neuroprotective activities in experimental conditions. On the other hand, several meta-analysis of the existing studies in acute stroke examining short and long term fatality rates with vinpocetin was unable to assess efficacy. In chronic cerebrovascular patients, vinpocetin improves impaired hemorheological variables, has significant vasodilating properties, improves endothelial dysfunction, neuroimaging studies showed selective increase in cerebral blood flow and cerebral metabolic rate, all of which are potentially beneficial in cerebrovascular disease and may improve cognitive functions. Summary - Based on the above mentioned results vinpocetin plays an important role both in basic research and in clinical management of different neurological diseases.]

Clinical Oncology

[Management of pancreatic cancer today]

BODOKY György, LAKATOS Gábor

[Pancreatic cancer (PC) is a major health problem with a poor prognosis. The number of patients with PC is increasing globally. There are no screening tests for early detection of PC, but even when diagnosed early, surgery is possible in only a minority of cases. Managing PC remains a big challenge. For selected patients with borderline or unresectable disease, neoadjuvant therapy offers the potential for tumor downstaging. In patients with resectable disease, adjuvant chemotherapy improves the fi ve year survival rate, whereas the use of adjuvant radiochemotherapy is still controversial. In metastatic cancer, monotherapy with gemcitabine remained the main therapeutic option during more than 10 years. Many different combinations with other drugs and new targeted therapies have been tested with gemcitabine. Only a combination of erlotinib and gemcitabine has shown a modest survival benefi t until now. Many gene alterations that directly contribute to pancreas tumorigenesis have been identifi ed or are under active investigation. Recently, the FOLFIRINOX regimen has been reported to be more active than gemcitabine in selected metastatic patients. Quality of life is an extremly important factor, when treating a patient with PC. CA 19-9 serum level can provide important information with regards to prognosis, overall survival, and response to chemotherapy as well as predict post-operative recurrence. There is a strong need for other predictive biomarkers to select patients, who might benefi t from available and new therapeutic options.]