Lege Artis Medicinae

[A Discovery: a Snapshot or a Final Chord?]

VARRÓ Vince

APRIL 01, 2009

Lege Artis Medicinae - 2009;19(03)

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[Metastatic tumour with papillary structure in the colon]

CSERNI Gábor, BORI Rita, FEKETE Katalin, OLÁH Csaba, SVÉBIS Mihály, KOVÁCS Katalin, SZŰCS Miklós

[INTRODUCTION - Colorectal carcinomas are frequent and their diagnosis and treatment is generally considered a routine task in oncology, but in some cases, using a routine approach may cause unforeseeable difficulties. CASE REPORT - A 72-year-old woman underwent segmental bowel resection of a tumour diagnosed as colon cancer 15 months earlier. The tumour also metastasized in the lungs. Autopsy findings raised a high level of suspicion that her colon tumour was a metastasis from a uterine cervical adenocarcinoma undiscovered before the post mortem examination. CONCLUSION - Occasionally metastases do not arise from the tumour that we are aware of, and metastases may mimic primary tumours. Although the papillary structure of a colon cancer should raise the possibility of a metastatic nature, also primary - at least partially - papillary carcinomas may arise in the large intestines.]

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[Background – Dizziness is one of the most frequent complaints when a patient is searching for medical care and resolution. This can be a problematic presentation in the emergency department, both from a diagnostic and a management standpoint. Purpose – The aim of our study is to clarify what happens to patients after leaving the emergency department. Methods – 879 patients were examined at the Semmel­weis University Emergency Department with vertigo and dizziness. We sent a questionnaire to these patients and we had 308 completed papers back (110 male, 198 female patients, mean age 61.8 ± 12.31 SD), which we further analyzed. Results – Based on the emergency department diagnosis we had the following results: central vestibular lesion (n = 71), dizziness or giddiness (n = 64) and BPPV (n = 51) were among the most frequent diagnosis. Clarification of the final post-examination diagnosis took several days (28.8%), and weeks (24.2%). It was also noticed that 24.02% of this population never received a proper diagnosis. Among the population only 80 patients (25.8%) got proper diagnosis of their complaints, which was supported by qualitative statistical analysis (Cohen Kappa test) result (κ = 0.560). Discussion – The correlation between our emergency department diagnosis and final diagnosis given to patients is low, a phenomenon that is also observable in other countries. Therefore, patient follow-up is an important issue, including the importance of neurotology and possibly neurological examination. Conclusion – Emergency diagnosis of vertigo is a great challenge, but despite of difficulties the targeted and quick case history and exact examination can evaluate the central or peripheral cause of the balance disorder. Therefore, to prevent declination of the quality of life the importance of further investigation is high.]

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Neuroscience highlights: Main cell types underlying memory and spatial navigation

KRABOTH Zoltán, KÁLMÁN Bernadette

Interest in the hippocampal formation and its role in navigation and memory arose in the second part of the 20th century, at least in part due to the curious case of Henry G. Molaison, who underwent brain surgery for intractable epilepsy. The temporal association observed between the removal of his entorhinal cortex along with a significant part of hippocampus and the developing severe memory deficit inspired scientists to focus on these regions. The subsequent discovery of the so-called place cells in the hippocampus launched the description of many other functional cell types and neuronal networks throughout the Papez-circuit that has a key role in memory processes and spatial information coding (speed, head direction, border, grid, object-vector etc). Each of these cell types has its own unique characteristics, and together they form the so-called “Brain GPS”. The aim of this short survey is to highlight for practicing neurologists the types of cells and neuronal networks that represent the anatomical substrates and physiological correlates of pathological entities affecting the limbic system, especially in the temporal lobe. For that purpose, we survey early discoveries along with the most relevant neuroscience observations from the recent literature. By this brief survey, we highlight main cell types in the hippocampal formation, and describe their roles in spatial navigation and memory processes. In recent decades, an array of new and functionally unique neuron types has been recognized in the hippocampal formation, but likely more remain to be discovered. For a better understanding of the heterogeneous presentations of neurological disorders affecting this anatomical region, insights into the constantly evolving neuroscience behind may be helpful. The public health consequences of diseases that affect memory and spatial navigation are high, and grow as the population ages, prompting scientist to focus on further exploring this brain region.

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EEG-based connectivity in patients with partial seizures with and without generalization

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Objective - to investigate the neurophysiological basis of secondary generalization of partial epileptic seizures. Patients and methods - inter-ictal, resting-state EEG functional connectivity (EEGfC) was evaluated and compared: patients with exclusively simple partial seizures (sp group) were compared to patients with simple partial and secondary generalized seizures (spsg group); patients with exclusively complex partial seizures (cp group) were compared to patients with cp and secondary generalized seizures (cpsg group); the collapsed sp+cp group (spcp) was compared to those who had exclusively secondary generalized seizures (sg group). EEGfC was computed from 21-channel waking EEG. 3 minutes of waking EEG background activity was analyzed by the LORETA Source Correlation (LSC) software. Current source density time series were computed for 23 pre-defined cortical regions (ROI) in each hemisphere, for the 1-25 Hz very narrow bands (1 Hz bandwidth). Thereafter Pearson correlation coefficients were calculated between all pairs of ROI time series in the same hemisphere. Z-scored correlation coefficients were compared at the group level (t-tests and correction for multiple comparisons by local false discovery rate, FDR). Results - Statistically significant (corrected p<0.05) EEGfC differences emerged at specific frequencies (spsg > sg; cpsg > cp), and at many frequencies (sg > spcp). The findings indicated increased coupling between motor cortices and several non-motor areas in patients with partial and sg seizures as compared to patients with partial seizures and no sg seizures. Further findings suggested increased coupling between medial parietal-occipital areas (structural core of the cortex) and lateral hemispheric areas. Conclusion - increased inter-ictal EEGfC is associated with habitual occurrence of secondary generalized seizures.

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[PURPOSE - Real-time ultrasonographic elastography is a new imaging technique which is used in characterizing the difference in hardness between pathologic and normal tissue. The purpose of our study was to evaluate the diagnostic performance of real-time ultrasonographic elastography and Doppler ultrasonography (DUS) individually and combined in differentiation of benign and malignant cervical lymph nodes (LN). PATIENTS AND METHODS - Fifty-one patients (12 men, 39 women) referred for fine-needle aspiration or surgical biopsies of suspected cervical lymph nodes were examined with gray scale ultrasonography, power DUS, and realtime ultrasonographic elastography. During DUS examination vascularity and resistance index (RI) values were evaluated. A five-group elastographic colour code pattern was used to evaluate the ultrasonographic elastograms for LN (pattern 1, an absent or a very small hard area; pattern 2, hard area <45%; pattern 3, hard area ≥45%; pattern 4, peripheral hard and central soft areas; pattern 5, hard area occupying entire solid component with or without soft rim). In addition, strains of LN and surrounding muscles were measured on elastograms, and the muscle-to-LN ratio (strain index) was calculated. Real-time ultrasonographic elastography and DUS results were compared with the final diagnosis obtained by fine-needle aspiration cytology analysis and/or by surgical pathology. The diagnostic potential of the examined criteria for malignancy was evaluated with univariate analysis and multivariate generalized estimating equation regression p≤0.05 indicated statistical significance. RESULTS - A strain index higher than 2.45 and colour pattern 4-5 had high utility in malignant LN classification with 93.8% sensitivity, 89.5% specificity (p<0.001). The results were significantly better than those obtained by using DUS characterization - that is, RI greater than 0.57 - which had 78.9% sensitivity (p<0.001). CONCLUSION - Real-time ultrasonographic elastography had 93.8% sensitivity and 89.5% specificity in the differentiation of benign and malignant cervical LN in patients referred for fine-needle aspiration or surgical biopsies with suspicion of malignancy. Real-time ultrasonographic elastography and DUS in addition to gray scale ultrasonography may improve the differential diagnosis of LN.]