Lege Artis Medicinae



JULY 20, 2004

Lege Artis Medicinae - 2004;14(07)

[INTRODUCTION - In recent years a number of clinical trials have been proved that infliximab, a monoclonal chimeric antibody against tumour necrosis factor (one of the proinflammatory cytokines) is an effective induction and maintenance therapy in severe and fistulizing Crohn’s disease. The authors summarize the results of the first Hungarian, open, multicenter clinical trial with biological treatment of Crohn’s disease. PATIENTS AND METHODS - Overall 74 patients in 9 study-centers were enrolled and allocated into the following two groups: 29 patients (31%) with severe, active, therapy-resistent clinical picture of Crohn’s disease and 45 individuals (61%) showing fistulizing forms of the disease. Infliximab was administered iv. in a dose of 5 mg/kg body mass one single occasion in patients formed the first group and altogether three times in cases suffering of fistulizing form of the disease. RESULTS - In active Crohn cases infliximab exerted its beneficial effect within 4 weeks (58% of patients improved) which was most pronounced at week 8th (79% of the patients was in better condition). However, in cases of fistulizing form longer period is neccessary for developing the effect. In 76% of treated patients proved to be efficacious within 14 weeks but later on flare-ups were observed. Concomittantly administered immunsuppressive agents did not altered the beneficial effect of infliximab. CONCLUSIONS - The results are proving the benefit of infliximab induction therapy both in cases of severe, active or in fistulizing forms of the disease. The article reviews the indication of infliximab treatment and provides a „user’s guide” for practizing clinicians.]



Further articles in this publication

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[INTRODUCTION - Intramuscular follicular Bcell lymphoma is a rare entity of malignant lymphomas complicating the disease course of dermato/polymyositis. CASE REPORT - The authors report a female patient who was diagnosed with dermatomyositis in 1963 (age of 36). She was given steroid and hydroxychloroquine therapy. In 1973 she was treated with steroid for Boeck sarcoidosis. In 1999, she was treated for steroid therapy again for reoccurence of dermatomyositis. In 2000, a histological diagnosis of primary intramuscular follicular lymphoma was established from the right thigh region. She was given several courses of polychemotherapy and radiation therapy, but the lymphoma was difficult to control, and she died of progressive disease in 2003. CONCLUSION - It is an interesting case as 37 years elapsed since the diagnosis of dermatomyositis before the lymphoma has started. We could not state a definite relation between the myositis and the lymphoma but the increased frequency of autoimmune diseases is probably due to immune regulatory problems, that have eventually led to the appearance of the rapidly growing indolent lymphoma.]

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[Report on the 1st Debrecen Medical Days]

BRÚGÓS Boglárka, JUHÁSZ Mária

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[The author presents a review about the fundamental principles of normal endothelial function and the main causes for the development of endothelial dysfunction. First of all, endothelial dysfunction results in structural alterations in the wall of the vessel - the „vascular remodelling” in hypertension - and that is the base of hypertensive microangiopathy and target organ damage. In patients with high blood pressure the reactivity of vessels is impaired by the endothelial dysfunction. The members of the main drug groups can influence the vasoactive factors produced in endothelium differently. This different effects of drugs create different clinical benefits. Especially, the ACE inhibitors, the calcium antagonists (mostly the new generation of dihydropyridines) have endothelial protective effects, but some β-blockers, α-1 adrenergic blockers and - in a totally different way of action - the statins are capable of influencing the endothelial dysfunction.]

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[The number of diabetic patients will be doubled in the coming decades reaching 300 million for year 2025. The number of type 1 diabetics will also be increased but the majority of it will result from the increased number of type 2 diabetics. All types of diabetes are the consequence of a combination of genetic susceptibility and environmental factors, meaning that the prevention of diabetes epidemic cannot be done without the clarification of the genetic background. Significant progression has happened in the discovery of the genetic background of type 1 diabetes mellitus. It was helped by the etiologic classification of the disease: with the new classification the patient groups became more homogeneous. The HLA system is responsible for about 50-70% of the genetic risk while the effects of other genetic factors contribute 1-2% of the genetic susceptibility, respectively. Presently 25 gene regions are known as the different genetic factors of type 1 diabetes mellitus. Regarding the HLA system, the genes and pathomechanism causing the disease are not known. The classification of diabetes mellitus can be based on the HLA type while the predictability of type 1 diabetes mellitus is helped by the HLA type and the INS-VNTR. Much less is known about the genetic background of the polygenic type 2 diabetes mellitus. Its manifestation is now happening at younger age before. The best-fit genetic model consists of only a few genes with moderate effect superimposed on a polygenic background. Several „candidate” genes participating in the impaired insulin secretion and insulin action have already been investigated as the genes responsible for type 2 diabetes. These data showed the specificity in the population and most showed mild or modest association with the disease. Genomewide scans have resulted a number of significant diabetes susceptibility genes specific for a variety of populations, but these investigations have only resulted in the isolation of one gene (calpain 10) that is thought to contribute to type 2 diabetes. Most recent genomewide scans found loci on chromosome 20 in two different populations with significant segregation of type 2 diabetes. These loci are near to the region harboring the transcription factor hepatocyte nuclear factor genes. The transcription regulator HNF family is responsible for the regulation of the expression of several genes participating in the function of liver and pancreatic islet becoming a strong candidate for being a diabetes gene.]

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[One of the forms of conservative treatment of incontinent patients is pharmacological therapy. The choice of medicine for the conservative treatment of an incontinent patient is based on the diagnosis formulated by applying the appropriate diagnostic procedures. As far as pharmacological treatment is concerned, it is for the treatment of incontinence caused by idiopathic and neurogenic involuntary detrusor contraction. There are medicines for everyday clinical practice, partly uroselective ones with mainly anticholinergic effects. In case of stress incontinence the reduction of the symptoms can be expected by using an agent that increases the tone of the closing muscle of the urethra. In overflow incontinence the aim of the pharmacological treatment is to reduce the overflow resistance.]

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Related contents

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.

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[Comment to the article titled “Exploratory study of outcomes of blood sample mass examinations by rank correlations”]

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[The author’s response to the comment on “Exploratory study of outcomes of blood sample mass examinations by rank correlations”]

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

[What happens to vertiginous population after emission from the Emergency Department?]

MAIHOUB Stefani, MOLNÁR András, CSIKÓS András, KANIZSAI Péter, TAMÁS László, SZIRMAI Ágnes

[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.]