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Clinical Neuroscience

JANUARY 30, 2016

Unanswered questions in the transcranial magnetic stimulation treatment of patients with depression

MORVAI Szabolcs, NAGY Attila, KOVÁCS Attila, MÓRÉ Csaba, BERECZ Roland, FRECSKA Ede

According to the WHO fact sheet depression is a common mental disorder affecting 350 million people of all ages worldwide. Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) is a technique which allows the investigator to stimulate and study cortical functions in healthy subjects and patients suffering from various mental and neurological disorders. In the early 1990s, studies revealed that it is possible to evoke long term mood changes in healthy volunteers by rapid rate repetitive, TMS (rTMS) over the frontal cortex. Subsequent studies involving depressed patients found frontal cortical rTMS administered daily to be clinically effective. In the past two decades, numerous trials examined the therapeutic potential of rTMS application in the treatment of mood disorders with constantly evolving treatment protocols. The aim of this paper is to review the literature of the past two decades, focusing on trials addressing the efficacy and safety of rTMS in depressed patients. Our primary goal is to evaluate the results in order to direct future studies which may help investigators in the development of treatment protocols suitable in hospital settings. The time is not far when TMS devices will be used routinely by practitioners primarily for therapeutic purpose rather than clinical research. To our knowledge, a widely accepted “gold standard" that would offer the highest efficacy, with the best tolerability has not been established yet. In order to approach this goal, the most important factors to be addressed by further studies are: localization, frequency, intensity, concurrent medication, maintenance treatments, number of pulses, trains, unilateral, or bilateral mode of application.

Lege Artis Medicinae

MARCH 10, 2020

[Recommendations of the European Atherosclerosis Society (EAS) and the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) for dyslipidaemia. Focused on: primary prevention]

BAJNOK László

[In 2019 the European Atherosclerosis So­ciety (EAS) and European Society of Car­dio­logy (ESC) renewed their dyslipidae­mia guidelines. The new version is more progressive than the previous ones. Thus, in the low-risk, not severely hy­per­choles­te­ro­lae­mic population cholesterol-lowering medication is also suggested. Except this low-risk group, atherogenic target values, e.g. for LDL-cholesterol, were reduced by an entire category, in some cases to the lowest one. If these goals cannot be achieved with statin-monotherapy, combined treatment is recommended generally by the cholesterol inhibitor ezetimib, and in some very high-risk cases also by innovative cholesterol lowering so-called PCSK9 inhibitor. ]

Lege Artis Medicinae

MARCH 10, 2020

[Primary care strategy of antihypertensive treatment of very elderly and frail patients]

TORZSA Péter, KALABAY László, CSATLÓS Dalma, HARGITTAY Csenge, MÁRKUS Bernadett, MOHOS András, SZIGETI Mátyás, FERENCI Tamás, MARJOLEIN Verschoor, ROZSNYAI Zsofia, JACOBIJN Gussekloo, ROSALINDE K. E. Poortvliet, SVEN Streit

[BACKGROUND - When treating very el­der­ly and frail hypertensive patients, there have to be taken in account the general health condition and frailty of patients, the present cardiovascular diseases (CVD) and values of the systolic blood pressure (SBP). Goals - In a clinical study performed in 29 countries, we aimed to analyse differences in practical antihypertensive therapy of family doctors among patients older than 80 years; further we sought to answer how much was influenced their therapeutic choice by frailty of the old age. The other goal of our study was to compare Hungarian versus international outcomes. Methodology - As part of an online survey, family practitioners had to decide about necessity of starting antihypertensive treatment among very elderly patients according to different patterns of frailty, SBP and CVD. The ratio of specific cases with positive treatment decision of family practitioners was compared in all 29 countries. We used a logistic mixed model analysis to multivariately model the role of frailty. Results - 2543 family practitioners participated in the cross-national study; 52% were female; 51% practised in urban environment. In 61% of practices, there was the ratio higher than 10% of very elderly patients. Hungary participated with 247 family practitioners in the study; 52.3% were female; 63.1% practised in urban environment. In 48.8% of practices the ratio of very elderly patients was higher than 10%. In 24 out of the 29 countries (83%), frailty was associated with GPs’ negative decision about starting treatment even after adjustment for SBP, CVD, and GP characteristics (odds ratio [OR 0.53]), 95% CI: 0.48-0.59; ORs per country 0.11-1.78). The lowest treatment ratio was in the Netherlands (34.2%; 95% CI: 32.0-36.5%) and the highest one in Ukraine (88.3%; 95% CI: 85.3-90.9%). In Hungary’s treatment ratio ranged 50-59%. This country ranked on the 27th place since Hungarian family practitioners chose rather to start antihypertensive treatment despite the frailty of the patient (OR=1.16; 95% CI: 0.85-1.59). Hungarian family practitioners started pharmacotherapy of elderly patients more frequently if they were males (OR= 1.45; 95% CI: 0.81-2.61), were working in their practice for less than 5 years (OR=2.41; 94% CI: 0.51-11.38), and if they had many patients aged over 80 years in their practice (OR=2.18; 95% CI: 0.70-6.80), however these differences were sta­­tistically not significant. Among Hun­ga­rian family practitioners starting therapy was significantly influen­ced by cardiovascular disease (OR=3.71; 95% CI: 2.64-5.23) and a SBP over 160 mmHg (OR=190.39; 95% CI: 106.83-339.28). Conclusions - In our study, there was significant difference between countries in starting antihypertensive treatment for very elderly patients. However, Hungary was among the countries where family practitioners preferred to treat their frail patients. The patients’ frailty did not have any impact on starting the therapy; rather cardiovascular disease and a SBP over 160 mmHg decided. It is an important message of the study that there is continuous need to educate family practitioners and trainees about the treatment of frail, elderly hypertensive patients.]

Lege Artis Medicinae

MARCH 10, 2020

[Diagnosis and treatment of the overactive bladder]

MAJOROS Attila, ROMICS Miklós

[The Overactive Bladder Syndrome (OAB) is a symptomatic diagnosis featured mainly by urgency of urine discharging. This condition can be triggered by a number of etiological factors, most of which are idiopathic in origin. Regardless of gender and age, the prevalence is ca. 16% and has a serious impact on the quality of life of the patients. In­ves­tigations are mostly performed through usual baseline examinations; second-line invasive examinations are rarely required. The broad spectrum of treatment options ran­ges from lifestyle changes and elimina­tion of triggering factors, through be­ha­vio­ural therapy and medication to the mi­ni­mally invasive (botulinum toxin, neuro­mo­dulation, percutaneous stimulation of the tibial nerve) - and rarely - invasive thera­pies. ]

Lege Artis Medicinae

NOVEMBER 15, 2019

[Hypertension in the elderly ]

BARNA István

[Elevated isolated systolic pressure is the most common and greatest cardiovascular risk factor with age. The prevalence of hypertension increases with age and ex­ceeds 60% over 70 years. Proper treatment of hypertension in the elderly, even in very old age (> 80 years), increases life expectancy and reduces the risk of cardiovascular events. For patients over 65 years of age, the target blood pressure range is between 130-139 / 70-80 mmHg if the patient tolerates the treatment. In elderly patients with poorer conditions, systolic blood pressure may be <150 mmHg. White-coat hypertension is common, nondipper ratio is increased, autonomic nervous system dysregulation is more common, and orthostatic decrease of blood pressure. The renal function is decreased or already impaired, often resulting in poorer therapeutic cooperation due to impaired cognitive function. The blood pressure lowering effect of targeted lifestyle changes may be the same as medication monotherapy, with the main disadvantage of decreasing adherence over time, for which a proper physician-patient relationship is essential. First-line agents for the treatment of elderly hypertension include angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors (ACE inhibitors), angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs), long-acting calcium channel blockers, and thiazide, thiazide-like diuretics. Beta-blockers should be used in the treatment of elderly hypertension if they have other indications (coronary heart disease, heart failure, arrhythmias). More than 70% of hypertensive patients should use combination therapy to achieve target blood pressure. Take advantage of fixed dose combination to improve compliance to optimize treatment. ]

Lege Artis Medicinae

NOVEMBER 15, 2019

[Hypertensive emergency conditions in Family practice]

TORZSA Péter

[Family doctors play an important role in the treatment of high blood pressure emergencies. There are two forms of these: hypertensive, non-life-threatening states (urgency) and the hypertensive crisis (emergency) with life-threatening complications. The boundary between these two forms is not sharp, and a non-life-threatening urgency can turn into a hypertensive crisis. Hypertensive emergency is defined as an acute, marked increase of blood pressure with concomitant life-threatening target organ dysfunction. Treatment always requires hospitalization and parenteral administration of antihypertensive agents. In the case of hypertensive urgency, the acute increase of blood pressure is not complicated with organ damage. In these cases treatment can be performed in primary care with oral drugs. ]

Hypertension and nephrology

OCTOBER 23, 2019

[Blood pressure management for stroke prevention and in the acute stroke. The new guideline of European Society of Hypertension (ESH, 2018), European Society of Cardiology and Hungarian Society of Hypertension (HSH, 2018)]

JENEI Zoltán

[Hypertension is the leading modifiable risk factor for stroke. Its prevalence amongst stroke patient is about 60-70% and the benefit of blood pressure (BP) lowering therapy on stroke risk reduction is well established. However the optimal BP targets for preventing stroke and reducing stroke consequences have been controversial. The new European (ESC/ESH) and Hungarian (HSH) hypertension guideline published in 2018 highlighted the primary and secondary prevention of stroke and the BP management in the acute stroke care as well. According results from ACCORD, SPRINT, HOPE-3, and other metaanalysis the systolic blood pressure (SBP) lowering < 120 mmHg has not favourable effect, thus in hypertensive patients < 65 years the SBP should be lowered to a BP range of 120-129 mmHg. In older patients ≥ 65 years the SBP should be targeted to a BP range of 130-139 mmHg (IA). In patients with acute intracerebral haemorrhage careful acute BP lowering with iv. therapy, to <180 mmHg should be considered only in case of SBP ≥ 220 mmHg (IIaB). In patients with acute ischaemic stroke who are eligible for iv. thrombolysis, BP should be carefully lowered and maintained to < 180/105 mmHg for at least the first 24 h after thrombolysis (IIaB). If the patient is not eli gible for lysis and BP ≤ 220/110 mmHg, routine BP lowering drug therapy is not recommended inside 48-72 h (IA). In patients with markedly elevated BP > 220/110 mmHg who do not receive fibrinolysis, drug therapy may be considered, based on clinical judgement, to reduce BP by 15% during the first 24 h after the stroke onset (IIbC). After 72 h of acute stroke in case of hypertensive patients < 65 years the SBP should be lowered to a BP range of 120-129 mmHg (IIaB). In older patients ≥ 65 years the SBP should be targeted to a BP range of 130-139 mmHg (IA). If BP < 140/90 mmHg after stroke, the BP lowering should be considered (IIbA). It is recommended to initiate an antihypertensive treatment with combination, preferably single pill combination of renin-angiotensin system blockers plus a calcium channel blocker and/or a thiazide like diuretics (IA). Lowering SBP < 120 mmHg is not recommended due to advers events regardless of age and type of stroke either in primary or secondary stroke prevention.]

Lege Artis Medicinae

OCTOBER 20, 2019

[Thiazide- or thiazide-like diuretics should be used in the treatment of patients with hypertension? Particularities of the situation in Hungary]

VÁLYI Péter

[Diuretics have remained the cornerstone of the antihypertensive treatment since their widespreading in the 1960s. According to the 2018 ESC/ESH Guidelines for the management of arterial hypertension, in the absence of evidence from direct comparator trials and recognizing that many of the approved single-pill combinations are based on hydrochlorothiazide, this drug and thiazide-like indapamide can be considered suitable antihypertensive agents. In the 2018 Hungarian guidelines indapamide is named as the most efficacious diuretic in the treatment of patients with hypertension. The aim of the publication is redefining thiazide- and thiazide-like diuretic use in the treatment of hypertensive patients, with particular attention to presently available hydrochlorothia­zide and indapamide, and their combination drugs in Hungary.]

Lege Artis Medicinae

JULY 20, 2019

[How many cardiovascular events can be avoided by a lipid lowering therapy based on preventive guidelines?]

MÁRK László

[The lipid lowering therapy became one of the most important elements in the cardiovascular prevention, yet it is not appropriately evaluated neither by the doctors, nor by the patients. The lipid goal attainment should to be improved according to Hungarian and international data. Using a recommendation guided lipid lowering therapy the most benefit can be expected in the patients at very high risk who alrea­dy had a cardiovascular event, where the LDL-cholesterol goal is 1.8 mmol/L. Calculating upon the data of 170000 patients of Cholesterol Treatment Trialists’ Collaboration a decrease of LDL-cholesterol level from 2.5 mmol/L to 1.8 in 100 patients in 10 years would avoid 3 myocardial infarctions, strokes or death, lowering that from 3.5 mmol/L to the goal would prevent these 3 events within 5 years. Using the traditional LDL-cholesterol lowering medication, high dose statin and ezetimibe, if the attitude of doctors and the compliance of patients would be ideal, the 1.8 mmol/L goal attainment rate would be over 80%. Unfortunately, up to now the reimbursed administration of ezetimibe in Hungary is still bound to a specialist’s recommendation, adding it to any dose of any statin an additional 20% LDL-cholesterol can be expected. The reimbursed administration of PCSK9-inhibitors is possible only based on a special request to National Health Insurance Fund. To achieve a better national cardiovascular morbidity and mortality the attitude of the doctors and the adherence of the patients to the lipid lowering therapy should be improved (it’s the goal of the present paper as well).]

Lege Artis Medicinae

MAY 20, 2019

[Notes on the management of hypertension in chronic kidney disease ]

AMBRUS Csaba

[The prevalence of hypertension among pa­tients with chronic kidney disease is high, reaching more than 80%. Hypertension is both one of the main causes and also the most common consequence of chronic kidney disease. It is also a main factor responsible for the high cardiovascular morbidity and mortality in this patient population. Blood pressure control can improve patient outcomes, lower cardiovascular risk and slow down the progression of kidney dis­ease, irrespective of the underlying cause. The optimal therapy should therefore focus not only on blood pressure reduction but also on renoprotection. Basic understanding of the renal pathophysiology in hypertension and renal effects of various medications is of paramount importance. In this review, we summarized cornerstones of the antihypertensive therapy in patients with chronic kidney disease. The management of patients receiving kidney replacement therapies, such as hemodialysis, peritoneal dialysis or transplanta­tion requires special knowledge and expe­rience, therefore it is not discussed here. The aim of this review was to allow non-nephrologist physicians to take care of their kidney patients with more confidence and effectiveness.]