Clinical Neuroscience

[Pharmacological and nonpharmacological treatment of insomnias with regard to sleep medicine]


MAY 30, 2018

Clinical Neuroscience - 2018;71(05-06)


[Insomnia - one of the most prevalent sleep complain - has a great impact on the everyday life. Basically two different form of insomnia can be defined: the insomnia disorder and the co-morbid insomnias. To treat adequately determination of background pathology is essential, which is based on the help of Sleep Medicine Centers. According to the newest guidelines, the treatment of insomnia disorder is based on cognitive behavioural therapies followed by pharmaceutical intervention. In this review we provide the short description of cognitive behavioural therapies and basic principles of hypnotic drugs. Despite the availability of insomnia guidelines the huge variation of the insomnia medication can be seen in the daily practice. Due to the above mentioned reasons we summarize the good clinical practice of hypnotic drug administration for insomnia patients.]



Further articles in this publication

Clinical Neuroscience

Evaluation of ischemic stroke patients with systemic cancer

UFUK Emre, TASKIN Gunes, IREM Pinar, FURUZAN Kokturk, ESENGUL Liman, ORHAN Yağiz

Purpose - In cancer patients, an ischemic stroke can be seen as both a direct effect of cancer and a complication of treatment. This condition can negatively affect the follow-up and treatment of these patients. For this research, we aimed to evaluate the clinical features, stroke types and etiological features of ischemic stroke patients with histories of cancer or found to have cancer during the aetiological investigation. Materials and methods - We retrospectively evaluated 100 patients (57 males, 43 females) who were hospitalized with acute stroke and determined to have the presence of cancer or a cancer history during the aetiological investigation between 2011 and 2016. All the demographic features, stroke types and localizations, National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS) scores, Rankin Scale scores, durations of cancer and cancer treatments were recorded. Results - The mean age of the patients was 67.07 ± 10.9 years old, the median NIHSS score was 5, and the median Rankin Scale score was 4. While 79% of patients had ischemic stroke risk factors, 21% did not. Atherosclerotic stroke was the most common stroke type (49%, n=49) and cryptogenic strokes were detected in 21% (n=21). In addition, 63% of the patients had chronic cancer (later than 6 months), 31% of the patients had recent cancer histories (less than 6 months), and 29% of the patients had metastases. Among all the malignancies, lung cancer (n=23), gastrointestinal cancer (n=20) and gynaecological-breast cancer (n=16) were the three most common. Moreover, 37% of the patients underwent chemotherapy, 29% underwent radiotherapy, and 88% of the patients had Carotid/Vertebral Doppler USG abnormalities. Conclusion - Similar to what is stated in the literature, an atherosclerotic stroke was the most common type of stroke in the cancer patients. Stroke risk factors were not detected in 21% of the patients, and in the majority of the patients, atherosclerotic changes in the carotid artery were observed in the Doppler examinations. In the aetiology and prognosis of ischemic stroke, it is important to keep in mind the existence of cancer in addition to the classical stroke risk factors.

Clinical Neuroscience

Retrospective comparison of efficacy of levetiracetam and lacosamide add-on treatments in patients with partial onset seizure

ACAR Türkan, ARAS Guzey Yesim

Objective - The study aims to retrospectively compare the efficacy of lacosamide (LCS) and levetiracetam (LEV) in add-on treatment in patients with partial-onset epilepsy. Material and method - Patients who have been followed-up for at least one year due to diagnosis of partial epilepsy between September 2014 and December 2017 and who had no seizure control, despite using at least two antiepileptic monotherapies, and therefore undergone LEV or LCS add-on treatment were retrospectively reviewed. Of the patients, total number of seizures and seizure control rates 6 months before and 3 and 6 months after the add-on treatment were compared. Results - There was no statistically significant difference between the 30 patients in the LEV group (12 females, 18 males, mean age 29.7±6.6) and 28 patients in the LCS group (12 females, 16 males, mean age 28.2±6.4) in terms of age, gender and the duration of illness. When the LEV and LCS groups were evaluated separately, the mean number of seizures within 3 and 6 months after the add- on treatment were significantly lower than the mean number of seizures in the last 6 months before the add-on treatment (p<0.005 and p<0.005 respectively). There was no statistically significant difference between the two groups when compared with each other in terms of the rate of decrease in number of seizures and seizure control before and after the add-on treatment (p=0.445 and p=0.238, respectively). Conclusion - LCS appears to be as effective as the currently well-established LEV in the treatment of partial onset seizures. No comparative study was found in the literature similar to this subject matter. There is a need for prospective studies for the comparison of the efficacies of these two drugs.

Clinical Neuroscience

Is stroke indeed a “Monday morning disease”?


Introduction - The therapeutic time window of acute stroke is short. Decision on the use of intravenous thrombolysis is based on well-defined criteria. Any delay in the transport to a designated stroke centre decreases the odds of therapeutic success. In Hungary, the admission rate of stroke patients peaks on Monday, the number gradually decreasing by the end of the week. This phenomenon has long been suggested to be due to the lack of emergency care approach. According to the literature, however, returning to work following a holiday is a risk factor for acute stroke. A similar phenomenon is well-known in veterinary medicine, a condition in horses referred to as ‘Monday morning disease’. In our study, we analysed the distribution of admissions due to acute stroke by the day of the week in 4 independent data sources. Patients and methods - The number of patients admitted to the Szent János Hospital, Budapest, Hungary with stroke and that of emergency ambulance transports in the whole city of Budapest due to acute stroke were analysed in the period between January 1 and March 31, 2009. The distribution of thrombolytic interventions reflecting hospitalizations for hyperacute stroke was analysed based on data of the Szent János Hospital in 2009-2012, and on national data from 2006-2012. Descriptive statistics was used to present the data. The variation between daily admission was compared by chi-square test. Results - The proportion of daily admission of stroke patients admitted to the Szent János Hospital was the highest at the beginning of the week (18% on Monday, and 21% on Tuesday) and the lowest on the weekend (9% and 9% on Saturday and Sunday, respectively). The distribution of ambulance transports in Budapest due to acute stroke tended to be similar (15% and 15% on Monday and Tuesday, whereas 13% and 12% on Saturday and Sunday, respectively) on different days of the week. No such Monday peak could be observed in a single centre regarding thrombolytic interventions: 18% and 19% of the total of 80 thrombolytic interventions in the Szent János Hospital were performed on Monday and Sunday, respectively. At the national level the higher Monday rate is obvious: during a 7-year period 16.0%, 12.7%, and 13.5% of all thrombolytic interventions in Hungary were performed on Monday, Saturday and Sunday, respectively. Conclusion - Monday preference of stroke is not exclusively caused by the lack of emergency care approach, and the phenomenon is not consistent at the individual hospital level in cases undergoing thrombolysis.

Clinical Neuroscience

What is the real effect of pregabalin in patients with diabetic neuropathic pain? (Do patients suffer from less pain or do they less care about it?)

CAGDAS Erdogan, NEDIM Ongun, SELIM Tümkaya, HAKAN Alkan, NEŞE Öztürk

Objectives - Depression and anxiety are frequent in patients with chronic diseases such as diabetic neuropathic pain. The pain seems to be more severe in patients in whom depressive findings accompanied pain symptoms. Pregabalin was reported to have positive effects on anxiety and depression. This brings out the question, whether the pain relief effect of pregabalin is due to its analgesic effect or to its effects on mood? The aim of this study is to find out whether the positive effect of pregabalin in patients with diabetic neuropathic pain is limited to its effect on pain. Thus the question - do patients suffer from less pain or do they less care about pain? - should be answered. Methods - With this aim the NRS scores of 46 patients with diabetic neuropathic pain, whose HADS scores did not change with pregabalin treatment were compared with their baseline levels, retrospectively. Results - The NRS scores of the group were reduced with pregabalin treatment. Conclusion - This results suggests that the reduced pain in pregabalin treatment should be independent from its effects on depression and anxiety.

Clinical Neuroscience

[Relationship between patent foramen ovale and cryptogenic stroke in a retrospective hospital-based study]


[Objective - After routine workup, 23-25% of ischemic strokes etiology remains unknown, i.e. cryptogenic. However, according to international results pathogenic patent foramen ovale (PFO) reveals in 25% of these cases. Aim of our retrospective study to prove the substantial etiological role of PFO-related stroke (PFO-RS) in cryptogenic strokes (CS), and to identify age related differences in stroke etiology. Methods - All new ischemic strokes of 2014-2015 were classified by ASCOD (Atherosclerosis, Small-vessel disease, Cardiac pathology, Other, Dissection) phenotyping. CS was defined when the etiology was unknown. With the help of special ultrasound techniques and RoPE (Risk of Paradoxical Embolism) score the portion of PFO-RS were determined in the examined CS population. Moreover, etiological distribution and differences between age groups (<40, 40-60, >60 years) were described. Results - During the examined period, 8.12% of 985 new ischemic strokes were categorized as CS. 41.38% of examined CS were found to be PFO-related. PFO-RS were considerably more frequent in the younger age groups than in the older age groups. The probability of appearance of PFO-RS were significantly higher in younger age than in case of age independency. Our results verify the substantial etiological role of PFO-RS in CS, and confirm the essential role of contrast enhanced functional transcranial Doppler in the routine diagnostic workup. Age related differences in stroke etiology were found to be statistically significant (p=0.000, df=14), in which small-vessel disease, cardiac pathology, dissection, other pathologies, CS and PFO-RS were contributed significantly. Based on our results, till in young age rare etiologies are typical, while in older age classical etiologies are mainly characteristic.]

All articles in the issue

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Clinical Neuroscience

[Consensus statement of the Hungarian Clinical Neurogenic Society about the therapy of adult SMA patients]

BOCZÁN Judit, KLIVÉNYI Péter, KÁLMÁN Bernadette, SZÉLL Márta, KARCAGI Veronika, ZÁDORI Dénes, MOLNÁR Mária Judit

[Background – Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is an autosomal recessive, progressive neuromuscular disorder resulting in a loss of lower motoneurons. Recently, new disease-modifying treatments (two drugs for splicing modification of SMN2 and one for SMN1 gene replacement) have become available. Purpose – The new drugs change the progression of SMA with neonatal and childhood onset. Increasing amount of data are available about the effects of these drugs in adult patients with SMA. In this article, we summarize the available data of new SMA therapies in adult patients. Methods – Members of the Executive Committee of the Hungarian Clinical Neurogenetic Society surveyed the literature for palliative treatments, randomized controlled trials, and retrospective and prospective studies using disease modifying therapies in adult patients with SMA. Patients – We evaluated the outcomes of studies focused on treatments of adult patients mainly with SMA II and III. In this paper, we present our consensus statement in nine points covering palliative care, technical, medical and safety considerations, patient selection, and long-term monitoring of adult patients with SMA. This consensus statement aims to support the most efficient management of adult patients with SMA, and provides information about treatment efficacy and safety to be considered during personalized therapy. It also highlights open questions needed to be answered in future. Using this recommendation in clinical practice can result in optimization of therapy.]

Lege Artis Medicinae

[Hypertension, COPD and COVID-19. Focus on antihypertensive therapy]


[Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is a very common comorbidity of hypertension and it is often unrecognised by physicians. The factors involved in the pathomechanism of both diseases should be realised when choosing treatment. Among factors, hypoxia, increased tone of sympathetic nervous system and activation of renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system should primarily be considered. Vascular wall damage and endothelial dysfunction has an important role in both conditions. The goals of treatment are elimination of risk factors, optimizing the blood pressure, the consequential prevention of cardio-cerebrovascular, renal and pulmonary damage; finally prolonging the patients’ life and improving their quality of life as well. Both hypertension and COPD significantly worsen the condition of COVID-19 patients since they increase the severity of the disease and the rate of in-patients’ and their mortality. In the treatment of hypertension among COPD and COVID-19 patients there must be emphasized the medication inhibiting of renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system, such as angiotensin-converting en­zyme inhibitors or angiotensin-II AT1 re­cep­tor antagonists. Special attention concerned the beneficial effect of mineralocorticoid receptor antagonist spironolactone. Other antihypertensive drugs (calcium channel blockers, thiazide-like diu­retics, high selectivity β1 receptor antagonists) may supplement the treatment if necessary. Long-acting β2 receptor agonists, muscarinic receptor antagonists and inhalation corticosteroids may be administered in double or triple combination also in hypertension and COPD as well. It is important to note, that statin therapy and also vitamin D3 improve the condition of COVID-19 patients.]

Lege Artis Medicinae

[30 years in diabetology reflected on the pages of Lege Artis Medicinae – 1990-2020]


[Commemorating the 30th anniversary of foundation the journal Lege Artis Me­di­cinae, the author endeavours to review the main developments of diabetology in the same period and arranges their reflections on the journal’s pages. He points out that similar to many other disciplines, the history of development has extremely been rich in the past three decades, thus he focused only on a few issues. The author analyses the changes in the treatment of type 2 diabetes and highlights specific aspects like the importance of early metabolic control, individualized treatment choices, a risk-oriented approach instead of a glucocentric direction, and the role of patient education and a health-conscious lifestyle, which have resulted in the holistic approach of our therapeutic strategy. While using relevant quotes, the author shows that the readers of the journal were also able to keep pace with all events and they were always provided with relevant information by au­thentic specialists of diabetology. ]

Lege Artis Medicinae

[Treatment options for localized and widespread post-COVID pain]


[Data on the new coronavirus caused di­s­ease and its treatment have been accumulating for more than a year. There are four main disease courses: no or mild symp­toms, unavoidable hospitalisation, severe or lethal outcome, and permanent or post-hoc manifestations. The last course is usually referred to as post-COVID syndrome. As a part of the acute and post-COVID symptomatology there were published pain perceptions with frequent but heterogeneous localisation. It is practical to classify them by the origin of pain: nociceptive/inflammatory, peripheral neuropathic or central. Additionally, we have to clear which phase is the post-COVID patient in i.e. the patient has the prolonged COVID- or persistent post-COVID syndrome. However, in addition to an acute general inflammatory reaction, a true inflammation of joints and muscles is very rare in the musculoskeletal system. The diffuse musculoskeletal pain, chronic fatigue, generalised anxiety and depressive disposition manifest themselves in both acute and persistent forms. Their explanation is essentially of neurological nature: there are para-infectious “neuro-inflammation”, i.e. neuropathic and central mechanisms in the background. Accor­ding­ly, therapeutic options must be chosen while concerning the neuropharmacological action mechanisms of analgesics. El­derly patients at high iatrogenic risk and with multiple co-morbidities may be treated transdermal instead of oral drug administration.]

Clinical Oncology

[Therapy of endometrial cancer - an update]

SIPOS Norbert

[Endometrial cancer is the most frequent gynecologic malignancy in developed countries. Recently, there is a signifi cant increase of incidence caused by epidemic obesity. While the etiology of endometrial cancer can be heterogeneous, the effective therapy should be rather personalized. The primary therapy of endometrial cancer is operative. The recommended surgery is total abdominal hysterectomy and bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy. Management of pelvic and paraaortic lymphadenectomy is supported by the latest international recommendations, except cases of low-risk tumors (stage I/A, grade 1 or 2, endometrioid type, diameter of tumor <2 cm). Method of adjuvant therapy, especially in developed stages, is still controversial. Efficacy of postoperative irradiation, chemotherapy and chemoirradiation is under investigation by several ongoing studies. Recurrent endometrial cancer has bad prognosis, the best solution in this case is chemotherapy. In recent years targeted therapy (especially antiangiogenetic drugs, mTORinhibitors and hormontherapy) gave us some promising results. Around 80% of endometrial cancers can be diagnosed at early stages and cured with efficacy. Unfortunately, there is a group of tumors with bad prognosis, low differentiation, or recurrency, which can be a real challenge for clinicians. In this review we discuss the latest and most promising studies and scientifi c results in connection with treatment of high-risk endometrial cancers.]