Lege Artis Medicinae

[The 44th Congress of the European Association for the Study of the Liver Copenhagen, 22-26 April 2009]

LOMBAY Béla

JUNE 10, 2009

Lege Artis Medicinae - 2009;19(04-05)

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Further articles in this publication

Lege Artis Medicinae

[Dilemmas of ‘off-label’ therapy]

SIMON László

Lege Artis Medicinae

[Focus on the diagnosis and therapy of chronic cough]

SZILASI Mária

[Cough by itself is not a disease but a part of a complex defense mechanism protecting from harmful materials entering the airways and cleaning the lungs and airways from potentially harmful materials. Normally, cough is accompanied by other defense mechanisms (bronchoconstriction and secretion of sputum) that increase the effectiveness of cough. Cough generally is caused by intrapulmonary disorders, but may be related to extrapulmonary lesions that are not easy to diagnose. In every case, an etiological diagnosis has to be the aim because this is the only way to proper treatment. From the abundance of reasons for cough, upper airway cough syndrome, asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and gastro-esophageal reflux disease are discussed in detail.]

Lege Artis Medicinae

[Tumor necrosis factor-alpha blockade: adverse clinical consequences and safety issues]

MŰZES Györgyi

[The pleiotropic cytokine tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α seems to be fundamentally involved in the pathogenesis of a variety of immune-mediated (partly autoimmune) chronic inflammatory disorders; therefore, its blockade has allowed a remarkable advance in treatment strategies. Safety and tolerability profile of TNF-antagonists is generally favorable, their overall risk/benefit ratio is definitely positive. Possible adverse consequences related to TNF-α blocking monoclonal antibodies and soluble receptors can be classified as class-specific side effects that are related to their mode of action, and individual, molecule-specific effects. Immunogenic potential of immunoglobulins (Ig) eliciting an anti-(Ig-) antibody immune response may reduce or eliminate their therapeutic benefit, increase the risk of resistance or intolerance to biologic agents, and also lead to other adverse clinical effects. The immunogenicity profile of TNFantagonists is mainly related to their hetero- (xeno-), allo- (iso-)genic or idiotypic antigen character. By means of generating fully human monoclonal antibodies, more tolerable drugs could be introduced into clinical practice.]

Lege Artis Medicinae

[Necessity of a shift in attitudes in the judgment and therapy of skin and soft-tissue infections]

SZALKA András

[Skin and soft-tissue infections are defined as infections of the epidermis, dermis, or subcutan tissue. They are among the most common human bacterial infections observed in clinical practice. It has also been shown that the incidence of skin and soft-tissue infections is increasing. This has been attributed to several factors, including increasing population age, surgical wounds related to more invasive surgery in the ageing population, obesity, malnutrition, diabetes, peripheral vascular disease and decreasing immunocompetence. There has been a major increase in the occurrence of Staphylococcus aureus infections, and communityacquired methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) infections in particular. Although many cases of skin and soft-tissue infections can be successfully treated using empirical antimicrobial therapy, changing resistance patterns of S. aureus isolates necessitate new treatment strategies.]

Lege Artis Medicinae

[Gastroenterological diseases during pregnancy in GPs’ practice]

BÁLINT Levente

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

Lege Artis Medicinae

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

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.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[The role of sleep in the relational memory processes ]

CSÁBI Eszter, ZÁMBÓ Ágnes, PROKECZ Lídia

[A growing body of evidence suggests that sleep plays an essential role in the consolidation of different memory systems, but less is known about the beneficial effect of sleep on relational memory processes and the recognition of emotional facial expressions, however, it is a fundamental cognitive skill in human everyday life. Thus, the study aims to investigate the effect of timing of learning and the role of sleep in relational memory processes. 84 young adults (average age: 22.36 (SD: 3.22), 21 male/63 female) participated in our study, divided into two groups: evening group and morning group indicating the time of learning. We used the face-name task to measure relational memory and facial expression recognition. There were two sessions for both groups: the immediate testing phase and the delayed retesting phase, separated by 24 hours. 84 young adults (average age: 22.36 (SD: 3.22), 21 male/63 female) participated in our study, divided into two groups: evening group and morning group indicating the time of learning. We used the face-name task to measure relational memory and facial expression recognition. There were two sessions for both groups: the immediate testing phase and the delayed retesting phase, separated by 24 hours. Our results suggest that the timing of learning and sleep plays an important role in the stabilizing process of memory representation to resist against forgetting.]