Clinical Neuroscience

Population-based stroke screening days in the 12th district of Budapest in 2011 and 2016 - What have and what have not changed?

FOLYOVICH András1, BOTOS Nóra1, BALOGH Erzsébet1, BAKOS Mária2, HERTELENDY Anna3, BÉRES-MOLNÁR Anna Katalin1

MAY 30, 2019

Clinical Neuroscience - 2019;72(05-06)


Introduction - Population-based screening is an option to identify persons at high risk for stroke. However it is associated with rather high expenses, necessitating the selection of effective methods that take local characteristics into account. The 12th district of Budapest has a long tradition of population-based screening for frequent and preventable diseases. The Szent János Hospital hosts an annual stroke screening day. In the present study, previously published data from the 2011 screening were compared with those obtained in 2016, looking for changes and tendencies throughout the examined period. Subjects and methods - The screening day was conducted in a generally similar way in 2011 and 2016. Similarly to the previous event, the program was organized on a Saturday, the call for the event was spread by the local newspaper. The crew composition was the same. As regards the components of the screening (currently including general history taking, risk status assessment, blood pressure measurement, BMI assessment, cholesterol and blood glucose tests, carotid duplex ultrasonography, and ophthalmological examination), the only difference was the absence of cardiologic examination (it was conducted on an independent day). The anonymous data sheet was the same. Results - The number of participants in the 2016 event was 33, to provide more comfortable conditions. The female predominance was slightly less pronounced but was still present in 2016 (60.6% vs. 72.9%). The mean age became substantially higher (71.2 y vs. 62.9 y). The ratios of participants with higher level of education (97% vs. 94%) and those who are married were still remarkable. The most frequent risk factors were the same; however the ratio of participants with hypertension, ‘other heart disease’, and diabetes increased, whereas that of with hyperlipidemia and obesity decreased. The incidence of atrial fibrillation was unaltered. None of the participants in 2016 admitted smoking (previously this ratio was 20.8%) or drinking heavily. The findings of the carotid ultrasonography revealed a more favorable vascular status. Ophthalmological assessments (predominantly hypertensive alterations on fundoscopy) revealed that the pathological vs. physiological ratio switched to 1:2 from 2:1. The final evaluation of the screening program likewise demonstrated an improved overall state of health of the population. Conclusions - We observed a more favorable stroke risk status of the population in 2016. Whether it is indeed a tendency unknown at present. The role of the local media in calling for screening is still decisive, and the cohesive power of the family is important.


  1. Szent János Hospital, Department of Neurology and Stroke Center, Budapest
  2. Szent János Hospital, Department of Radiology, Budapest
  3. Szent János Hospital, Department of Ophthalmology, Budapest



Further articles in this publication

Clinical Neuroscience

Mid-term oral isotretinoin therapy causes a predominantly sensory demyelinating neuropathy

ALTUN Yasar, INAN Esra

Aim - The purpose of this prospective study was to investigate whether mid-term treatment with oral isotretinoin may impact peripheral nerve function. Methods - In this study, we included 28 patients with no apparent neurological or neurophysiological findings. The patients received treatment with oral isotretinoin for papulopustular or nodulocystic acne. The patients with normal findings in the first examination were given 1 mg/kg/day oral isotretinoin. Neurological examinations and electroneurographic studies were performed before and 6 months after the onset of isotretinoin treatment. Results - Clinical examinations and electroneurographic evaluations prior to treatment revealed no abnormalities in any of the patients. However, 20 patients (72%) displayed one or more abnormal values in the tested parameters after treatment. Although the mean amplitudes of compound muscle action potential of the ulnar and median nerves did not vary, significant decreases were observed in the mean sensory conduction velocities of median, ulnar, sural, medial plantar, medial dorsal cutaneous, and dorsal sural nerves 6 months after the onset of treatment. Conclusion - Systemic use of isotretinoin may cause electroneurographic changes. Probable electroneurographic alterations may be detected at a much earlier period via dorsal sural nerve tracing when electrophysiological methods used in routine clinical practice cannot detect these changes.

Clinical Neuroscience

The prevalence of sarcopenia and dynapenia according to stage among Alzheimer-type dementia patients

YAZAR Tamer, YAZAR Olgun Hülya

Aim - In this study, the aim was to identify the prevalence of sarcopenia and dynapenia according to disease stage among Alzheimer-type dementia (AD) patients and collect data to suggest precautions related to reducing the disease load. Method - The study was completed with 127 patients separated into stages according to Clinical Dementia Rating Scale (CDR) criteria and 279 healthy volunteers aged 18-39 years and 70-80 years abiding by the exclusion criteria who agreed to participate in the research. Our prospective and cross-sectional study applied the CDR and mini mental test (MMSE) to patients with disorder in more than one cognitive area and possible AD diagnosis according to NINCDS-ADRDA (National Institute of Neurological and Communicative Disorders and Stroke-Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Disorders Association) diagnostic criteria. The patient and control groups had skeletal muscle mass index (SMMI), muscle strength and physical performance assessed with sarcopenia diagnosis according to European Working Group on Sarcopenia in Older People (EWGSOP) diagnostic criteria. Results - In our study, in parallel with the increase in disease stage of AD patients, the prevalence of sarcopenia (led by severe sarcopenia) and dynapenia was higher compared to a control group of similar age. Conclusion - In chronic, progressive diseases, like AD, identification of changes in parameters, like muscle mass and strength and reductions in physical performance in the early period, is important for identification and to take precautions in the initial stages considering the limitations of the preventive effects of treatment applied after diagnosis of AD.

Clinical Neuroscience

The methylation status of NKCC1 and KCC2 in the patients with refractory temporal lobe epilepsy

UNAL Yasemin, KARA Murat, GENC Fatma, OZTURK Aslan Dilek, GÖMCELI Bicer Yasemin, KAYNAR Taner, TOSUN Kursad, KUTLU Gülnihal

Purpose - Methylation is a key epigenetic modification of DNA and regarding its impact on epilepsy, it is argued that “DNA methylation may play an important role in seizure susceptibility and maintenance of the disorder”. DNA methylation status of KCC2 (SCL12A5) and NKCC1 (SCL12A2) associated with refractory temporal lobe epilepsy was investigated in our study. Materials and methods - Thirty-eight patients with temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) who were diagnosed by video EEG monitoring and 32 healthy control subjects were included in the study. Twenty-three patients in TLE group were men and the remaining 15 were women. Among them, 27 had unilateral temporal focus (9 with right; 18 with left) and 11 patients had bilateral TLE. We analyzed promoter region methylation status of the KCC2 (SCL12A5) and NKCC1 (SCL12A2) genes in the case and control groups. Gene regions of interest were amplified through PCR and sequencing was accomplished with pyro-sequencing. Results - We found a significant relationship between TLE and methylation on the NKCC1. However, there was no association between TLE and methylation on the KCC2 gene. Also, we found no association between right or left and unilateral or bilateral foci of TLE. There was no relationship between TLE and methylation on the NKCC1and KCC2 genes in terms of mesial temporal sclerosis in cranial MRI, head trauma or febrile convulsions. Conclusion - The methylation of NKCC1 can be a mecha­nism of refractory temporal lobe epilepsy. There are limited findings about DNA methylation in TLE. Therefore, further studies with large sample sizes are necessary.

Clinical Neuroscience

[Dopamine agonists in Parkinson’s disease therapy - 15 years of experience of the Neurological Clinics from Tîrgu Mureș. A cross-sectional study ]

SZÁSZ József Attila, CONSTANTIN Viorelia, MIHÁLY István, BIRÓ István, PÉTER Csongor, ORBÁN-KIS Károly, SZATMÁRI Szabolcs

[Background and purpose - There is relatively few data regarding the usage of dopaminagonists for the treatment of Parkinson’s disease; furthermore, there are no publications regarding Central- and Eastern-European countries. The aim of the study was to evaluate the use of dopamine agonists as a therapeutic option amongst Parkinson’s disease patients admitted to the Neurological Clinics of Tîrgu Mures during the last 15 years. Methods - In our study we investigated the data of all Parkinson’s patients treated at our clinics between the 1st of January 2003 and the 31st of December 2017. We analyzed the particularities of dopamine agonists’ usage based on the therapeutic recommendations from the final report of these patients. Regarding time since the diagnosis, we divided the patients in two groups: less than or equal to 5 years and more than 5 years. Results - During the studied period a total of 2379 patients with Parkinson’s disease were treated at the Clinics. From the 1237 patients with disease duration under 5 years 665 received dopamine agonists: 120 as monotherapy, 83 together with monoamine oxidase inhibitors and in 234 cases associated with levodopa. The remaining 228 patients were treated with a triple combination of levodopa, dopamine agonists and monoamine oxidase inhibitors. In patients suffering from Parkinson’s disease for more than 5 years, in 364 cases out of 653 a dopamine agonist was part of the therapy. Conclusion - The usage of dopamine agonists was similar to the data presented in other studies. We consider that clinicians treating the disease should, with the necessary prudence, use the available and recommended dopamine agonist with the utmost courage to their maximum therapeutic potential.]

Clinical Neuroscience

Hyperhomocysteinemia in female migraineurs of childbearing ages


Background and purpose - Migraine is a risk factor for ischemic stroke in women of childbearing ages. Previous researches revealed a higher prevalence of hyperhomocysteinemia in migraineurs. Possible differences on the frequencies of hyperhomocysteinemia between migraine with aura and migraine without aura could contribute the established variances in stroke risk between these migraine types. Therefore, we aimed to search if the frequency of hyperhomocysteinemia was different between these subtypes of migraine or not. Methods - We analyzed the findings of serum homocysteine levels in female migraineurs of 16-49 years old who admitted to our outpatient clinic. Results - Homocysteine level was elevated in 13.3% of study population. There were not any significant differences on median serum homocysteine levels between migraine with aura (8.0 mikromol/L) and without aura (8.5 mikromol/L). (p=0.426) The frequencies of hyperhomocysteinemia were also similar (9.1% versus 16.7%, respectively; p=0.373). Correlation analyses did not reveal any linear correlation between ages and homocysteine levels either in group of migraine with aura or in group of migraine without aura (p=0.417 and p=0.647, respectively). Similarly, any linear correlation between disease ages and homocysteine levels either in group of migraine with aura or in group of migraine without aura was not detected (p=0.359 and p=0.849, respectively). Conclusion - The median serum homocysteine levels and the frequencies of hyperhomocysteinemia are similar between migraine with aura and without aura in women of childbearing ages. Therefore, the variances on stroke risk ratios between these types of migraine are probably not originated from the differences of serum homocysteine status.

All articles in the issue

Related contents

Clinical Neuroscience

Late simultaneous carcinomatous meningitis, temporal bone infiltrating macro-metastasis and disseminated multi-organ micro-metastases presenting with mono-symptomatic vertigo – a clinico-pathological case reporT

JARABIN András János, KLIVÉNYI Péter, TISZLAVICZ László, MOLNÁR Anna Fiona, GION Katalin, FÖLDESI Imre, KISS Geza Jozsef, ROVÓ László, BELLA Zsolt

Although vertigo is one of the most common complaints, intracranial malignant tumors rarely cause sudden asymmetry between the tone of the vestibular peripheries masquerading as a peripheral-like disorder. Here we report a case of simultaneous temporal bone infiltrating macro-metastasis and disseminated multi-organ micro-metastases presenting as acute unilateral vestibular syndrome, due to the reawakening of a primary gastric signet ring cell carcinoma. Purpose – Our objective was to identify those pathophysiological steps that may explain the complex process of tumor reawakening, dissemination. The possible causes of vestibular asymmetry were also traced. A 56-year-old male patient’s interdisciplinary medical data had been retrospectively analyzed. Original clinical and pathological results have been collected and thoroughly reevaluated, then new histological staining and immunohistochemistry methods have been added to the diagnostic pool. During the autopsy the cerebrum and cerebellum was edematous. The apex of the left petrous bone was infiltrated and destructed by a tumor mass of 2x2 cm in size. Histological reexamination of the original gastric resection specimen slides revealed focal submucosal tumorous infiltration with a vascular invasion. By immunohistochemistry mainly single infiltrating tumor cells were observed with Cytokeratin 7 and Vimentin positivity and partial loss of E-cadherin staining. The subsequent histological examination of necropsy tissue specimens confirmed the disseminated, multi-organ microscopic tumorous invasion. Discussion – It has been recently reported that the expression of Vimentin and the loss of E-cadherin is significantly associated with advanced stage, lymph node metastasis, vascular and neural invasion and undifferentiated type with p<0.05 significance. As our patient was middle aged and had no immune-deficiency, the promoting factor of the reawakening of the primary GC malignant disease after a 9-year-long period of dormancy remained undiscovered. The organ-specific tropism explained by the “seed and soil” theory was unexpected, due to rare occurrence of gastric cancer to metastasize in the meninges given that only a minority of these cells would be capable of crossing the blood brain barrier. Patients with past malignancies and new onset of neurological symptoms should alert the physician to central nervous system involvement, and the appropriate, targeted diagnostic and therapeutic work-up should be established immediately. Targeted staining with specific antibodies is recommended. Recent studies on cell lines indicate that metformin strongly inhibits epithelial-mesenchymal transition of gastric cancer cells. Therefore, further studies need to be performed on cases positive for epithelial-mesenchymal transition.

Clinical Neuroscience

Alexithymia is associated with cognitive impairment in patients with Parkinson’s disease

SENGUL Yildizhan, KOCAK Müge, CORAKCI Zeynep, SENGUL Serdar Hakan, USTUN Ismet

Cognitive dysfunction (CD) is a common non-motor symptom of Parkinson’s disease (PD). Alexithy­mia is a still poorly understood neuropsychiatric feature of PD. Cognitive impairment (especially visuospatial dysfunction and executive dysfunction) and alexithymia share com­mon pathology of neuroanatomical structures. We hypo­thesized that there must be a correlation between CD and alexithymia levels considering this relationship of neuroanatomy. Objective – The aim of this study was to evaluate the association between alexithymia and neurocognitive function in patients with PD. Thirty-five patients with PD were included in this study. The Toronto Alexithymia Scale–20 (TAS-20), Geriatric Depression Inventory (GDI) and a detailed neuropsychological evaluation were performed. Higher TAS-20 scores were negatively correlated with Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS) similarities test score (r =-0.71, p value 0.02), clock drawing test (CDT) scores (r=-0.72, p=0.02) and verbal fluency (VF) (r=-0.77, p<0.01). Difficulty identifying feelings subscale score was negatively correlated with CDT scores (r=-0.74, p=0.02), VF scores (r=-0.66, p=0.04), visual memory immediate recall (r=-0.74, p=0.01). VF scores were also correlated with difficulty describing feelings (DDF) scores (r=-0.66, p=0.04). There was a reverse relationship bet­ween WAIS similarities and DDF scores (r=-0.70, p=0.02), and externally oriented-thinking (r=-0.77,p<0.01). Executive function Z score was correlated with the mean TAS-20 score (r=-62, p=0.03) and DDF subscale score (r=-0.70, p=0.01) Alexithymia was found to be associated with poorer performance on visuospatial and executive function test results. We also found that alexithymia was significantly correlated with depressive symptoms. Presence of alexithymia should therefore warn the clinicians for co-existing CD.

Clinical Neuroscience

Cases of inborn errors of metabolism diagnosed in children with autism

CAKAR Emel Nafiye, YILMAZBAS Pınar

Autism spectrum disorder is a neurodevelopmental disorder with a heterogeneous presentation, the etiology of which is not clearly elucidated. In recent years, comorbidity has become more evident with the increase in the frequency of autism and diagnostic possibilities of inborn errors of metabolism. One hundred and seventy-nine patients with diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder who presented to the Pediatric Metabolism outpatient clinic between 01/September/2018-29/February/2020 constituted the study population. The personal information, routine and specific metabolic tests of the patients were analyzed retrospectively. Out of the 3261 patients who presented to our outpatient clinic, 179 (5.48%) were diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder and were included in the study. As a result of specific metabolic examinations performed, 6 (3.3%) patients were diagnosed with inborn errors of metabolism. Two of our patients were diagnosed with classical phenylketonuria, two with classical homocystinuria, one with mucopolysaccharidosis type 3D (Sanfilippo syndrome) and one with 3-methylchrotonyl Co-A carboxylase deficiency. Inborn errors of metabolism may rarely present with autism spectrum disorder symptoms. Careful evaluation of the history, physical examination and additional findings in patients diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder will guide the clinician in the decision-making process and chose the appropriate specific metabolic investigation. An underlying inborn errors of metabolism may be a treatable cause of autism.

Clinical Neuroscience

Evaluation of the effectiveness of transforaminal epidural steroid injection in far lateral lumbar disc herniations

EVRAN Sevket, KATAR Salim

Far lateral lumbar disc herniations (FLDH) consist approximately 0.7-12% of all lumbar disc herniations. Compared to the more common central and paramedian lumbar disc herniations, they cause more severe and persistent radicular pain due to direct compression of the nerve root and dorsal root ganglion. In patients who do not respond to conservative treatments such as medical treatment and physical therapy, and have not developed neurological deficits, it is difficult to decide on surgical treatment because of the nerve root damage and spinal instability risk due to disruption of facet joint integrity. In this study, we aimed to evaluate the effect of transforaminal epidural steroid injection (TFESI) on the improvement of both pain control and functional capacity in patients with FLDH. A total of 37 patients who had radicular pain caused by far lateral disc herniation which is visible in their lumbar magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan, had no neurological deficit and did not respond to conservative treatment, were included the study. TFESI was applied to patients by preganglionic approach. Pre-treatment Visual Analogue Scale (VAS) and Oswestry Disability Index (ODI) scores of the patients were compared with the 3rd week, 3rd month and 6th month scores after the procedure. The mean initial VAS score was 8.63 ± 0.55, while it was 3.84 ± 1.66, 5.09 ± 0.85, 4.56 ± 1.66 at the 3rd week, 3rd month and 6th month controls, respectively. This decrease in the VAS score was found statistically significant (p = 0.001). ODI score with baseline mean value of 52.38 ± 6.84 was found to be 18.56 ± 4.95 at the 3rd week, 37.41 ± 14.1 at the 3rd month and 34.88 ± 14.33 at the 6th month. This downtrend of pa­tient’s ODI scores was found statistically significant (p = 0.001). This study has demonstrated that TFESI is an effective method for gaining increased functional capacity and pain control in the treatment of patients who are not suitable for surgical treatment with radicular complaints due to far lateral lumbar disc hernia.

Clinical Neuroscience

Electrophysiological investigation for autonomic dysfunction in patients with myasthenia gravis: A prospective study


Myasthenia gravis (MG) is an autoimmune disorder of neuromuscular transmission. Autonomic dysfunction is not a commonly known association with MG. We conducted this study to evaluate autonomic functions in MG & subgroups and to investigate the effects of acetylcholinesterase inhibitors. This study comprised 30 autoimmune MG patients and 30 healthy volunteers. Autonomic tests including sympathetic skin response (SSR) and R-R interval variation analysis (RRIV) was carried out. The tests were performed two times for patients who were under acetylcholinesterase inhibitors during the current assessment. The RRIV rise during hyperventilation was better (p=0.006) and Valsalva ratio (p=0.039) was lower in control group. The SSR amplitudes were lower thereafter drug intake (p=0.030). As much as time went by after drug administration prolonged SSR latencies were obtained (p=0.043).Valsalva ratio was lower in the AchR antibody negative group (p=0.033). The findings showed that both ocular/generalized MG patients have a subclinical parasympathetic abnormality prominent in the AchR antibody negative group and pyridostigmine has a peripheral sympathetic cholinergic noncumulative effect.