Lege Artis Medicinae

[Beta blockers for the treatment of chronic heart failure]


OCTOBER 20, 2009

Lege Artis Medicinae - 2009;19(10)



Further articles in this publication

Lege Artis Medicinae

[Heart massage is priority - New guidelines in resuscitation]


Lege Artis Medicinae

[Effect of beta blockers in hypertension, ischaemic heart disease, heart failure and metabolic syndrome]


[Beta-blockers are among the most widely used drugs for the treatment of cardiovascular diseases. In the mid-90’s, these drugs were recommended as first-line therapies of hypertension. With the introduction of new drugs, the list of first-choice drugs has been extended. The results of recently published major hypertension trials, which compared conventional agents (beta blockers and/or diuretics) with newer agents (angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors, Caantagonists, angiotensin receptor blockers), raised concerns regarding the role of beta blockers in cardiovascular primary prevention. Subsequently, a metaanalysis of 13 trials has shown that compared with other drug types, beta-blocker therapy is less beneficial in patients with hypertension who do not have heart disease. Nevertheless, in cardiovascular indications other than hypertension (acute myocardial infarction, heart failure and arrhythmias), betablockers retain their dominant position.]

Lege Artis Medicinae

[Antibiotic treatment of intra-abdominal infections, focusing on secondary peritonitis]


[The morbidity and lethality of intra-abdominal infections are still high. Their first-line therapies include surgical or image-guided interventions. Adjuvant therapy with a broad-spectrum antibiotic is crucial for the treatment of polymicrobial infections. As initiation of the therapy is urgent, the antibiotic must be chosen empirically. Pathogens of community-acquired and nosocomial intra-abdominal infections are greatly different. The type of microbes, the general status of the patients, and the severity of their disease determine the choice of antibiotic or antibiotic combination. Using an adequate initial antibiotic decreases postoperative mortality and morbidity. Emerging new pathogens and the resistance of known germs against multiple antibiotics complicates the selection of the antiinfective therapy. Tigecycline is a new tetracyclin-derivative that offers a novel therapeutic option owing to its broad spectrum and efficiency against “problematic bacteria”. The current guidelines facilitate the selection of an empirical therapy, but they do not replace the individualised therapeutic approach.]

Lege Artis Medicinae

[Insulin pump therapy for type 1 diabetes mellitus]

KIS János Tibor, KAUTZKY László, GROSZ Andrea

Lege Artis Medicinae

[In vitro sensitivity of human anaerobic pathogenic bacteria for tigecycline and comparative antibiotics in Hungary - Prospective multicentre trial]

NAGY Erzsébet, URBÁN Edit, JAKAB Gabriella, SZIKRA Lenke, MISZTI Cecília, SZABÓ Judit

[INTRODUCTION - Tigecycline, the first member of the glycylcycline family of antibiotics, is a semisynthetic derivative of minocycline. The modified tetracycline nucleus is protected against the resistance mechanisms that inactivate tetracyclines, thus tigecycline is expected to be effective against tetracycline- resistant strains. The aim of this multicenter survey, performed in 2007 and 2008 by three Hungarian laboratories, was to examine the efficiency of this drug against antianaerobic bacteria in vitro. MATERIALS AND METHODS - The participating laboratories isolated 540 strains of Gram-positive and Gram-negative anaerobic bacteria from various infectious sites. These sites represent the classes of infections for which tigecycline was recently approved as a treatment option (skin and soft tissue and intra-abdominalinfections), or for which it will be licensed in the near future (lower respiratory tract infections). Evaluation of antibiotic susceptibility was performed by Etest, and the efficiencies of six antibiotics were determined using MIC values. RESULTS - The 540 strains belonged to 33 different species. Of the 104 strains of Gram-positive anaerobic cocci, 100% proved to be susceptible to tigecycline. Similarly, 98% of the examined Clostridium strains showed susceptibility to this antibiotic. Two of the 56 Prevotella strains were resistant against tigecycline. MIC50 and MIC90 values in the 280 Bacteroides strains were 0.5 μg/ml and 1 μg/ml, respectively, whereas only 1.8% of the tested strains showed low resistance. CONCLUSION - Similarly to the findings of international surveys, our results show that tigecycline is effective against the great majority (97.4% susceptibility) of relevant anaerobic bacteria that are isolated from skin and soft tissue, intra-abdominal and lower respiratory tract infections. Thus, empiric use of tigecycline is recommended in any infections where anaerobic bacteria alone or a mixed flora of aerobic and anaerobic bacteria are likely to be present.]

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Fluoxetine use is associated with improved survival of patients with COVID-19 pneumonia: A retrospective case-control study

NÉMETH Klára Zsófia, SZÛCS Anna , VITRAI József , JUHÁSZ Dóra , NÉMETH Pál János , HOLLÓ András

We aimed to investigate the association between fluoxetine use and the survival of hospitalised coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pneumonia patients. This retrospective case-control study used data extracted from the medical records of adult patients hospitalised with moderate or severe COVID-19 pneumonia at the Uzsoki Teaching Hospital of the Semmelweis University in Budapest, Hungary between 17 March and 22 April 2021. As a part of standard medical treatment, patients received anti-COVID-19 therapies as favipiravir, remdesivir, baricitinib or a combination of these drugs; and 110 of them received 20 mg fluoxetine capsules once daily as an adjuvant medication. Multivariable logistic regression was used to evaluate the association between fluoxetine use and mortality. For excluding a fluoxetine-selection bias potentially influencing our results, we compared baseline prognostic markers in the two groups treated versus not treated with fluoxetine. Out of the 269 participants, 205 (76.2%) survived and 64 (23.8%) died between days 2 and 28 after hospitalisation. Greater age (OR [95% CI] 1.08 [1.05–1.11], p<0.001), radiographic severity based on chest X-ray (OR [95% CI] 2.03 [1.27–3.25], p=0.003) and higher score of shortened National Early Warning Score (sNEWS) (OR [95% CI] 1.20 [1.01-1.43], p=0.04) were associated with higher mortality. Fluoxetine use was associated with an important (70%) decrease of mortality (OR [95% CI] 0.33 [0.16–0.68], p=0.002) compared to the non-fluoxetine group. Age, gender, LDH, CRP, and D-dimer levels, sNEWS, Chest X-ray score did not show statistical difference between the fluoxetine and non-fluoxetine groups supporting the reliability of our finding. Provisional to confirmation in randomised controlled studies, fluoxetine may be a potent treatment increasing the survival for COVID-19 pneumonia.

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

Comparison of direct costs of percutaneous full-endoscopic interlaminar lumbar discectomy and microdiscectomy: Results from Turkey

ÜNSAL Ünlü Ülkün, ŞENTÜRK Salim

Microdiscectomy (MD) is a stan­dard technique for the surgical treatment of lumbar disc herniation (LDH). Uniportal percutaneous full-endoscopic in­terlaminar lumbar discectomy (PELD) is another surgical op­tion that has become popular owing to reports of shorter hos­pitalization and earlier functional recovery. There are very few articles analyzing the total costs of these two techniques. The purpose of this study was to compare total hospital costs among microdiscectomy (MD) and uniportal percutaneous full-endoscopic interlaminar lumbar discectomy (PELD). Forty patients aged between 22-70 years who underwent PELD or MD with different anesthesia techniques were divided into four groups: (i) PELD-local anesthesia (PELD-Local) (n=10), (ii) PELD-general anesthesia (PELD-General) (n=10), (iii) MD-spinal anesthesia (MD-Spinal) (n=10), (iv) MD-general anesthesia (MD-General) (n=10). Health care costs were defined as the sum of direct costs. Data were then analyzed based on anesthetic modality to produce a direct cost evaluation. Direct costs were compared statistically between MD and PELD groups. The sum of total costs was $1,249.50 in the PELD-Local group, $1,741.50 in the PELD-General group, $2,015.60 in the MD-Spinal group, and $2,348.70 in the MD-General group. The sum of total costs was higher in the MD-Spinal and MD-General groups than in the PELD-Local and PELD-General groups. The costs of surgical operation, surgical equipment, anesthesia (anesthetist’s costs), hospital stay, anesthetic drugs and materials, laboratory wor­kup, nur­sing care, and postoperative me­dication diffe­red significantly among the two main groups (PELD-MD) (p<0.01). This study demonstrated that PELD is less costly than MD.

Clinical Neuroscience

Cholinesterase inhibitors and memantine for the treatment of Alzheimer and non-Alzheimer dementias


In aging societies, the morbidity and mortality of dementia is increasing at a significant rate, thereby imposing burden on healthcare, economy and the society as well. Patients’ and caregivers’ quality of life and life expectancy are greatly determined by the early diagnosis and the initiation of available symptomatic treatments. Cholinesterase inhibitors and memantine have been the cornerstones of Alzheimer’s therapy for approximately two decades and over the years, more and more experience has been gained on their use in non-Alzheimer’s dementias too. The aim of our work was to provide a comprehensive summary about the use of cholinesterase inhibitors and memantine for the treatment of Alzheimer’s and non-Alzheimers’s dementias.

Lege Artis Medicinae

[Diagnosis and treatment of microvascular coronary heart disease. Specialities of conditions in Hungary]


[Invasive investigations show that in two-thirds of patients the myocardial ischaemia persists without obstructive coronary disease and any other heart conditions (INOCA). The underlying cause may be microvascular dysfunction (CMD) with consecutive microvascular coronary disease (MVD) and microvascular or epicardial vasospastic angina (MVA). The modern practice of clinical cardiology while using the developed non-invasive cardiac imaging permits exact measuring of the coronary flow with its characteristic indices. All of these improve the diagnosing of CMD-induced myocardial ischemia and provide opportunity to determine primary MVD cases. Since the recognition and treatment of MVD is significantly underrep­resented in the Hungarian medical care, the primary stable microvascular angina (MVA) is described in detail below with its modern invasive and non-invasive differential diagnosis and treatment, concerning especially its frequency provoked by high blood pressure and female coronary heart diseases. There are highlighted all recommended diagnostic procedures available under domestic conditions.]