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J. Clin. Med., Volume 13, Issue 8 (April-2 2024) – 293 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS) is a common disorder of the autonomic nervous system characterized by an increased heart rate of at least 30 bpm from supine to standing position, orthostatic intolerance and non-orthostatic symptoms, such as fatigue, dizziness, cognitive impairment, headache and others. POTS predominantly affects women of reproductive age and is often triggered by infection, including COVID-19, menarche, pregnancy, surgery, concussion and vaccination. In this cross-sectional, case–control study, we found that women and men with POTS have significant sexual dysfunction compared to healthy controls. Women with POTS had significantly lower scores in the sub-domains of desire, arousal, and satisfaction, while men with POTS had significantly lower scores in erectile and orgasmic functions, desire, and satisfaction than healthy controls. View this paper
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12 pages, 1409 KiB  
Article
Can Biomarkers and PET Imaging Predict Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Growth Rate?
by Samuel Bruls, Lucia Musumeci, Audrey Courtois, Roland Hustinx, Sarah Sakalihasan, Gauthier Namur, Jean-Olivier Defraigne and Natzi Sakalihasan
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2448; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082448 - 22 Apr 2024
Viewed by 577
Abstract
Background: Abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) is a life-threatening condition due to the risk of aneurysm growth and rupture. Biomarkers linked to AAA pathogenesis are attractive candidates for AAA diagnosis and prognosis. The aim of this study was to assess circulating biomarkers levels relationship [...] Read more.
Background: Abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) is a life-threatening condition due to the risk of aneurysm growth and rupture. Biomarkers linked to AAA pathogenesis are attractive candidates for AAA diagnosis and prognosis. The aim of this study was to assess circulating biomarkers levels relationship with PET imaging positivity and their predictive value in AAA growth rate. Methods: A total of 164 patients with AAA had whole body [18F]FDG PET/CT examination and blood drawn for biomarkers analysis at inclusion. Of these, 121 patients had at least one follow-up imaging assessment for AAA progression. Median (quartiles) imaging follow-up period was 32.8 months (15.2–69.6 months). Results: At baseline, PET was visually positive in 28 (17%) patients. Among PET+ patients, female proportion was higher compared to PET−patients (respectively, n = 6, 21.4% vs. n = 11, 8.1%, p = 0.046). Biomarkers of inflammation (CRP, CCL18), of proteolytic activity (MMP9), of extracellular matrix, and calcification regulation (OPN, OPG) were all significantly increased in PET+ patients (p < 0.05). During follow-up, rapid AAA growth (increase in size ≥ 1 cm per year) was observed in 36 (29.8%) patients and several biomarkers (CRP, MMP9, OPN, and OPG) were increased in those patients compared to patients without rapid growth (p < 0.05). Conclusions: Although PET positivity at baseline was not associated with rapid growth, CRP levels showed a significant association. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aortic Aneurysm: Latest Insights into Therapeutic Approaches)
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14 pages, 572 KiB  
Review
Total Knee Arthroplasty in People with Hemophilia: Higher Incidence of Periprosthetic Joint Infection and 1-Year Revision/Re-Operation than the General Population and Lower Prosthetic Survival When Early Postoperative Bleeding Complications Occurred: Current Literature Review
by Emerito Carlos Rodriguez-Merchan, Mario Mosconi, Hortensia De la Corte-Rodriguez, Eugenio Jannelli and Gianluigi Pasta
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2447; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082447 - 22 Apr 2024
Viewed by 532
Abstract
The purpose of this narrative review of the recent literature is to analyze the outcomes, complications, and implant survival of total knee arthroplasty (TKA) carried out on people with hemophilia (PWH). It has been shown that TKA substantially alleviates preoperative pain and improves [...] Read more.
The purpose of this narrative review of the recent literature is to analyze the outcomes, complications, and implant survival of total knee arthroplasty (TKA) carried out on people with hemophilia (PWH). It has been shown that TKA substantially alleviates preoperative pain and improves knee function and the patient’s quality of life. However, the complication rates of TKA range between 8.5% and 28.7, with postoperative hemarthrosis being the most frequent (7.6%). Besides, when comparing if the TKA was implanted before or after the year 2000, a reduction was found in the rates of periprosthetic joint infection—PJI (6.2% to 3.9%) and aseptic loosening (3.8% to 2.1%). Comparing prosthesis survival between PWH who had suffered early postoperative bleeding complications (EPBC) and patients who did not suffer EBPC, the mean survival duration was 17 years for the EPBC group and 22.1 years for the non-EPBC group. Survival rates were 80% for the EPBC group and 96.4% for the non-EPBC group. Compared to patients without hemophilia, PWH had a substantially higher incidence of PJI (Odds Ratio—OR 1.6) and 1-year revision/re-operation (OR 1.4). In short, although TKA substantially improves the quality of life of PWH, it is an intervention that has a non-negligible percentage of complications. TKA in PWH should preferably be performed only in highly specialized centers for the orthopedic treatment of hemophilia. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Challenges in the Management of Hemophilia)
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10 pages, 1224 KiB  
Article
The Association of Serum Profile of Transferrin Isoforms with COVID-19 Disease Severity
by Lech Chrostek, Kacper Gan, Marcin Kazberuk, Michal Kralisz, Katarzyna Janicka, Ewa Gruszewska, Anatol Panasiuk and Bogdan Cylwik
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2446; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082446 - 22 Apr 2024
Viewed by 532
Abstract
Background/Objective: Bearing in mind the relationship of transferrin (TRF) microheterogeneity with the biological activity of its isoforms, we propose, in this study, to determine the association of the profile of TRF isoforms with COVID-19 disease severity and to compare this profile to [...] Read more.
Background/Objective: Bearing in mind the relationship of transferrin (TRF) microheterogeneity with the biological activity of its isoforms, we propose, in this study, to determine the association of the profile of TRF isoforms with COVID-19 disease severity and to compare this profile to the profiles of other diseases. Methods: The disease group consisted of 96 patients from whom blood was collected twice, upon admission to the ward and after treatment (on average on the ninth day). TRF isoforms were separated by capillary electrophoresis. The analysis included disease severity, cytokine storm, comorbidities, patient survival, oxygen therapy, and modified early warning scores (MEWSs). Results: The concentration of 5-sialoTRF was higher in patients compared to controls at the beginning and during COVID-19 treatment. The concentration of this isoform varies with the severity of disease and was higher in critical patients than those with a moderate condition. Additionally, the level of 5-sialoTRF was lower and the level of 4-sialoTRF was higher in patients with comorbidities than that in patients without them. The concentration of 5-sialoTRF was lower and the concentration of 4-sialoTRF was higher in surviving patients than in non-surviving patients. There were no statistical changes in TRF isoforms according to presence of cytokine storm, MEWS, and oxygen therapy. Conclusions: We conclude that the profile of TRF isoforms in COVID-19 patients differs from that in other diseases. An increase in the concentration of a sialic acid-rich isoform, 5-sialoTRF, may be a compensatory mechanism, the goal of which is to increase oxygen delivery to tissues and is dependent on the severity of the disease. Additionally, the concentration of 5-sialoTRF may be a prognostic marker of the survival of COVID-19 patients. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Epidemiology & Public Health)
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14 pages, 2279 KiB  
Article
Potential Association of Molar-Incisor Hypomineralization (MIH) with Dental Agenesis and Infraoccluded Deciduous Molars: Is MIH Related to Dental Anomaly Pattern (DAP)? An Observational Cross-Sectional Study
by Maria Marcianes, Pablo Garcia-Camba, Alberto Albaladejo and Margarita Varela Morales
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2445; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082445 - 22 Apr 2024
Viewed by 548
Abstract
Background: Dental Anomaly Pattern (DAP) is a collection of morphologic, numeric, and eruptive anomalies of teeth that are often observed together, suggesting a potential genetic relationship. Our objective was to assess the potential associations of Molar-Incisor Hypomineralization (MIH), a common developmental defect [...] Read more.
Background: Dental Anomaly Pattern (DAP) is a collection of morphologic, numeric, and eruptive anomalies of teeth that are often observed together, suggesting a potential genetic relationship. Our objective was to assess the potential associations of Molar-Incisor Hypomineralization (MIH), a common developmental defect of enamel mineralization with a controversial etiology, with two specific components of DAP: (1) agenesis (AG) and (2) infraoccluded deciduous molars (IODM). Establishing such an association between MIH and one or both anomalies would provide evidence supporting a genetic link between MIH and DAP. Methods: We examined pretreatment intraoral standardized photographies and panoramic radiographs from 574 children aged 8–14 years, 287 having MIH and 287 without MIH, comparing the frequencies of AG and IODM in both groups. The subject samples were sourced from the databases of the orthodontic department at a university hospital. Results: The frequencies of AG in the MIH and non-MIH groups were 7% and 8%, respectively (p = 0.751). The corresponding frequencies of IODM were 27% and 19.2%, respectively (p = 0.082). That is, children with MIH did not exhibit an increased frequency of AG or IODM compared to those without MIH. Conclusions: These findings do not support the inclusion of MIH in DAP. Nevertheless, further analysis of possible associations is necessary to definitively validate or invalidate this hypothesis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Dentistry, Oral Surgery and Oral Medicine)
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22 pages, 778 KiB  
Review
Endothelial Function in Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension: From Bench to Bedside
by Michele Correale, Francesco Chirivì, Ester Maria Lucia Bevere, Lucia Tricarico, Michele D’Alto, Roberto Badagliacca, Natale D. Brunetti, Carmine Dario Vizza and Stefano Ghio
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2444; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082444 - 22 Apr 2024
Viewed by 966
Abstract
Pulmonary arterial hypertension is a complex pathology whose etiology is still not completely well clarified. The pathogenesis of pulmonary arterial hypertension involves different molecular mechanisms, with endothelial dysfunction playing a central role in disease progression. Both individual genetic predispositions and environmental factors seem [...] Read more.
Pulmonary arterial hypertension is a complex pathology whose etiology is still not completely well clarified. The pathogenesis of pulmonary arterial hypertension involves different molecular mechanisms, with endothelial dysfunction playing a central role in disease progression. Both individual genetic predispositions and environmental factors seem to contribute to its onset. To further understand the complex relationship between endothelial and pulmonary hypertension and try to contribute to the development of future therapies, we report a comprehensive and updated review on endothelial function in pulmonary arterial hypertension. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Clinical Advances in Pulmonary Heart Disease)
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12 pages, 3620 KiB  
Article
The Relationship between CT Angiography Collateral Score and Biochemical Parameters during Acute Ischemic Stroke Caused by Middle Cerebral Artery Infarct
by Halil Güllüoğlu, Hasan Armağan Uysal and Erkan Şahin
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2443; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082443 - 22 Apr 2024
Viewed by 569
Abstract
Background/Objectives: Collateral development after AIS is important for prognosis and treatment. In this study, we aimed to investigate the relationship and correlation between biochemical parameters and CT angiography collateral score within the first 9 h and its effect on the neurological outcomes [...] Read more.
Background/Objectives: Collateral development after AIS is important for prognosis and treatment. In this study, we aimed to investigate the relationship and correlation between biochemical parameters and CT angiography collateral score within the first 9 h and its effect on the neurological outcomes of patients with AIS due to MCA infarction. Methods: A total of 98 patients with MCA infarction were hospitalized for diagnosis and treatment after undergoing CT angiography within 9 h of suffering a stroke. Demographic data, admission biochemical parameters, hospitalization data, and discharge NIHSS scores were recorded. Souza’s scoring system for collateral distribution was used to evaluate collaterals. Souza CS system and clinical disability comparison outcomes identified. Results: According to the Souza CS system, 13 patients were in the malignant profile category, and 85 patients were in the good profile category. The NIHSS value of patients with a malignant profile was 27, while the mean NIHSS value of patients with a good profile was 9. There was a statistically significant difference in uric acid, total cholesterol, triglyceride, HDL cholesterol, CRP, hsCRP, D-Dimer, troponin I, vitamin B12, fibrinogen, NSE, homocysteine, aPTT, and INR levels according to collateral distribution. Conclusions: This study demonstrates that biochemical parameters can influence the distribution of malignant and benign collaterals in AIS independent of age and gender. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in the Diagnosis, Treatment, and Prognosis of Acute Stroke)
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18 pages, 3243 KiB  
Article
Changes in Maternal Heart Rate Variability and Photoplethysmography Morphology after Corticosteroid Administration: A Prospective, Observational Study
by Maretha Bester, Thomas J. Nichting, Rohan Joshi, Lamyae Aissati, Guid S. Oei, Massimo Mischi, Judith O. E. H. van Laar and Rik Vullings
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2442; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082442 - 22 Apr 2024
Viewed by 449
Abstract
Background: Owing to the association between dysfunctional maternal autonomic regulation and pregnancy complications, assessing non-invasive features reflecting autonomic activity—e.g., heart rate variability (HRV) and the morphology of the photoplethysmography (PPG) pulse wave—may aid in tracking maternal health. However, women with early pregnancy [...] Read more.
Background: Owing to the association between dysfunctional maternal autonomic regulation and pregnancy complications, assessing non-invasive features reflecting autonomic activity—e.g., heart rate variability (HRV) and the morphology of the photoplethysmography (PPG) pulse wave—may aid in tracking maternal health. However, women with early pregnancy complications typically receive medication, such as corticosteroids, and the effect of corticosteroids on maternal HRV and PPG pulse wave morphology is not well-researched. Methods: We performed a prospective, observational study assessing the effect of betamethasone (a commonly used corticosteroid) on non-invasively assessed features of autonomic regulation. Sixty-one women with an indication for betamethasone were enrolled and wore a wrist-worn PPG device for at least four days, from which five-minute measurements were selected for analysis. A baseline measurement was selected either before betamethasone administration or sufficiently thereafter (i.e., three days after the last injection). Furthermore, measurements were selected 24, 48, and 72 h after betamethasone administration. HRV features in the time domain and frequency domain and describing heart rate (HR) complexity were calculated, along with PPG morphology features. These features were compared between the different days. Results: Maternal HR was significantly higher and HRV features linked to parasympathetic activity were significantly lower 24 h after betamethasone administration. Features linked to sympathetic activity remained stable. Furthermore, based on the PPG morphology features, betamethasone appears to have a vasoconstrictive effect. Conclusions: Our results suggest that administering betamethasone affects maternal autonomic regulation and cardiovasculature. Researchers assessing maternal HRV in complicated pregnancies should schedule measurements before or sufficiently after corticosteroid administration. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Management of Pregnancy Complications)
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17 pages, 873 KiB  
Article
The Impact of Shared Assistance between Dermatology and Internal Medicine on Patients with Psoriasis
by Ana Julia García-Malinis, Juan Blas Pérez-Gilaberte, Tamara Gracia-Cazaña, Maria Pilar González García, Dolores Planas Linares and Yolanda Gilaberte
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2441; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082441 - 22 Apr 2024
Viewed by 717
Abstract
Background: The care of psoriatic patients requires a multidisciplinary approach that addresses not only skin involvement but also cardiovascular risk factors. Coordination between dermatology and internal medicine departments, with a specific focus on treatment and long-term follow-up, can substantially improve the course of [...] Read more.
Background: The care of psoriatic patients requires a multidisciplinary approach that addresses not only skin involvement but also cardiovascular risk factors. Coordination between dermatology and internal medicine departments, with a specific focus on treatment and long-term follow-up, can substantially improve the course of a disease and its associated complications. Objective: to evaluate the effects of the holistic management of patients with psoriasis by a multidisciplinary team consisting of dermatology and internal medicine specialists. Methods: We conducted an observational, prospective, single-center case–control study between October 2016 and December 2019 in San Jorge University Hospital (Huesca, Spain). Cases included patients undergoing follow-up in the combined dermatology and internal medicine clinic. The control group consisted of an equivalent number of randomly selected, age- and sex-matched patients with moderate-to-severe psoriasis who were seen in the general dermatology department of the same hospital during the same time period. Main outcomes and measures: The primary outcome was the control of psoriatic disease and cardiovascular risk factors such as weight, blood pressure, waist circumference, body mass index (BMI), SCORE index (Systematic Coronary Risk Evaluation), and blood test parameters, as well as diet, physical exercise, and habits such as tobacco and alcohol consumption. To compare data collected over time, data were grouped into three time periods: baseline (t1), intermediate (t2), and final (t3). Results: The case group consisted of 27 patients, and the control group consisted of 25 patients. Multivariate analysis was used to evaluate the relationship between the 10-year risk of experiencing a cardiovascular event (SCORE) and the clinical characteristics and analytical variables of patients with psoriasis and controls (n = 52). The variables that were significantly associated with a higher 10-year risk of experiencing a cardiovascular event were age (OR, 1.33; CI95% 1.21–1.50; p < 0.001); smoking (OR, 5.05, CI95% 1.07–27.37; p = 0.047); PASI (OR, 7.98, CI95% 2.32–35.86; p = 0.003); BSA (OR, 1.22, CI95% 1.01–1.49; p = 0.044); and being a control patient (OR, 3.26; CI95% 0.84–13.56; p = 0.029). Conclusions: Pharmacological and behavioral interventions carried out as part of the procedure of the multidisciplinary clinic resulted in improvements in the following variables relative to the control group: PASI, BSA, DLQI, PSOLIFE, lipid profile, insulin and HOMA-IR GGT levels, vitamin D levels, and SCORE. These findings indicate the beneficial effect of the multidisciplinary clinic, which reduced the risk of cardiovascular events in psoriatic patients with metabolic comorbidities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Psoriasis: Diagnosis, Treatment, and Management)
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11 pages, 4653 KiB  
Article
Multidisciplinary Management of Descending Necrotizing Mediastinitis: Is Thoracoscopic Treatment Feasible?
by Beatrice Leonardi, Giovanni Natale, Caterina Sagnelli, Antonio Marella, Francesco Leone, Francesca Capasso, Noemi Maria Giorgiano, Davide Gerardo Pica, Rosa Mirra, Vincenzo Di Filippo, Gaetana Messina, Giovanni Vicidomini, Giovanni Motta, Eva Aurora Massimilla, Gaetano Motta, Erino Angelo Rendina, Valentina Peritone, Claudio Andreetti, Alfonso Fiorelli and Antonello Sica
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2440; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082440 - 22 Apr 2024
Viewed by 491
Abstract
Background: Descending necrotizing mediastinitis (DNM) is a life-threatening condition, generally caused by downward dissemination of oropharyngeal infections through cervical fascial planes. Mediastinal drainage is conventionally achieved by thoracotomy, but a Video-Assisted Thoracoscopic Surgery (VATS) approach is gaining interest due to the reduced invasiveness [...] Read more.
Background: Descending necrotizing mediastinitis (DNM) is a life-threatening condition, generally caused by downward dissemination of oropharyngeal infections through cervical fascial planes. Mediastinal drainage is conventionally achieved by thoracotomy, but a Video-Assisted Thoracoscopic Surgery (VATS) approach is gaining interest due to the reduced invasiveness of procedure. We aimed to evaluate the effectiveness of VATS treatment in patients with DNM. Methods: We conducted a retrospective multicenter study including patients with descending mediastinitis that underwent mediastinal drainage through VATS (VATS group) or thoracotomy (thoracotomy group), both in association with cervical drainage. Patients with mediastinitis secondary to cardiac, pulmonary, or esophageal surgery were excluded. The intergroup differences regarding surgical outcome and postoperative morbidity and mortality were compared. Results: A total of 21 patients were treated for descending mediastinitis during the study period. Cervicotomy and thoracotomy were performed in 15 patients (71%), while cervicotomy and VATS were performed in 6 patients (29%). There were no significant differences in surgical outcome, postoperative morbidity, and mortality between groups. VATS treatment was not associated with a higher complication rate. Patients in the VATS group had a shorter operative time (p = 0.016) and shorter ICU stay (p = 0.026). Conclusions: VATS treatment of DNM is safe and effective. The comparison with thoracotomy showed no significant differences in postoperative morbidity and mortality. The VATS approach is associated with a shorter operative time and ICU stay than thoracotomy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section General Surgery)
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15 pages, 1317 KiB  
Article
Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Head and Neck Cancer Management: The Experience of the Maxillo-Facial Surgery Department of a French Regional Referral Center in a High-Incidence Area
by Emilien Colin, Agnès Paasche, Alban Destrez, Bernard Devauchelle, Jérémie Bettoni, Julien Bouquet, Stéphanie Dakpé and Sylvie Testelin
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2439; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082439 - 22 Apr 2024
Viewed by 500
Abstract
Background: Cancer patients are at a high risk of complications in cases of infection, and head and neck cancers (HNC) are no exception. Since late 2019, SARS-CoV-2 has caused a global health crisis, with high rates and severe forms of the disease in [...] Read more.
Background: Cancer patients are at a high risk of complications in cases of infection, and head and neck cancers (HNC) are no exception. Since late 2019, SARS-CoV-2 has caused a global health crisis, with high rates and severe forms of the disease in cancer patients. Hospitalization, surgery and radiotherapy were rapidly described as increasing the risk of infection. Since March 2020, the Amiens University Hospital (France) has been taking care of COVID-19 patients while its maxillofacial surgery department managed HNC patients without interruption, even during lockdown periods. However, many questions concerning the impact on patient care were still pending. The aim of this study is to describe HNC management in our center during the first epidemic peak and to evaluate the impact of containment measures on patient treatment. Methods: We retrospectively included 44 HNC patients treated in our department between 1 March and 31 August 2020. Two groups were defined according to the period of care: lockdown (March to May) and lighter restrictions (June to August). Results: The results show typical epidemiological characteristics, maintained management times and non-downgraded procedures. Conclusions: Thus, during the first epidemic peak, continuity of care and patients’ safety could be ensured thanks to adequate means, adapted procedures and an experienced surgical team. Full article
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12 pages, 1217 KiB  
Review
Vein of Marshall Ethanol Infusion for AF Ablation; A Review
by Louisa O’Neill, Benjamin De Becker, Maarten De Smet, Clara Francois, Rene Tavernier, Mattias Duytschaever, Jean-Benoit Le Polain De Waroux and Sebastien Knecht
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2438; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082438 - 22 Apr 2024
Viewed by 671
Abstract
The outcomes of persistent atrial fibrillation (AF) ablation are modest with various adjunctive strategies beyond pulmonary vein isolation (PVI) yielding largely disappointing results in randomised controlled trials. Linear ablation is a commonly employed adjunct strategy but is limited by difficulty in achieving durable [...] Read more.
The outcomes of persistent atrial fibrillation (AF) ablation are modest with various adjunctive strategies beyond pulmonary vein isolation (PVI) yielding largely disappointing results in randomised controlled trials. Linear ablation is a commonly employed adjunct strategy but is limited by difficulty in achieving durable bidirectional block, particularly at the mitral isthmus. Epicardial connections play a role in AF initiation and perpetuation. The ligament of Marshall has been implicated as a source of AF triggers and is known to harbour sympathetic and parasympathetic nerve fibres that contribute to AF perpetuation. Ethanol infusion into the Vein of Marshall, a remnant of the superior vena cava and key component of the ligament of Marshall, may eliminate these AF triggers and can facilitate the ease of obtaining durable mitral isthmus block. While early trials have demonstrated the potential of Vein of Marshall ‘ethanolisation’ to reduce arrhythmia recurrence after persistent AF ablation, further randomised trials are needed to fully determine the potential long-term outcome benefits afforded by this technique. Full article
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12 pages, 506 KiB  
Systematic Review
Enhancing Cranio-Maxillofacial Fracture Care in Low- and Middle-Income Countries: A Systematic Review
by Christian Deininger, Florian Wichlas, Marco Necchi, Amelie Deluca, Susanne Deininger, Klemens Trieb, Herbert Tempfer, Lukas Kriechbaumer and Andreas Traweger
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2437; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082437 - 22 Apr 2024
Viewed by 569
Abstract
Background: Cranio-maxillofacial (CMF) injuries represent a significant challenge in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), exacerbated by inadequate infrastructure, resources, and training. This systematic review aims to evaluate the current strategies and solutions proposed in the literature to improve CMF fracture care in [...] Read more.
Background: Cranio-maxillofacial (CMF) injuries represent a significant challenge in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), exacerbated by inadequate infrastructure, resources, and training. This systematic review aims to evaluate the current strategies and solutions proposed in the literature to improve CMF fracture care in LMICs, focusing on education, patient transfer, and off-label solutions. Methods: A comprehensive literature search was conducted using PubMed/Medline from January 2000 to June 2023. Studies were selected based on the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Review and Meta-analysis Statement (PRISMA). Solutions were categorized into three main areas: education (digital and on-site teaching, fellowships abroad), patient transfer to specialized clinics, and off-label/non-operative solutions. Results: Twenty-three articles were included in the review, revealing a consensus on the necessity for enhanced education and training for local surgeons as the cornerstone for sustainable improvements in CMF care in LMICs. Digital platforms and on-site teaching were identified as key methods for delivering educational content. Furthermore, patient transfer to specialized national clinics and innovative off-label techniques were discussed as immediate solutions to provide quality care despite resource constraints. Conclusions: Effective CMF fracture care in LMICs requires a multifaceted approach, prioritizing the education and training of local healthcare professionals, facilitated patient transfer to specialized centers, and the adoption of off-label solutions to leverage available resources. Collaborative efforts between international organizations, local healthcare providers, and educational institutions are essential to implement these solutions effectively and improve patient outcomes in LMICs. Full article
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13 pages, 2379 KiB  
Review
Potential Benefits of Photon-Counting CT in Dental Imaging: A Narrative Review
by Chiara Zanon, Alessia Pepe, Filippo Cademartiri, Costanza Bini, Erica Maffei, Emilio Quaia, Edoardo Stellini and Adolfo Di Fiore
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2436; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082436 - 22 Apr 2024
Viewed by 543
Abstract
Background/Objectives: Advancements in oral imaging technology are continually shaping the landscape of dental diagnosis and treatment planning. Among these, photon-counting computed tomography (PCCT), introduced in 2021, has emerged as a promising, high-quality oral technology. Dental imaging typically requires a resolution beyond the standard [...] Read more.
Background/Objectives: Advancements in oral imaging technology are continually shaping the landscape of dental diagnosis and treatment planning. Among these, photon-counting computed tomography (PCCT), introduced in 2021, has emerged as a promising, high-quality oral technology. Dental imaging typically requires a resolution beyond the standard CT systems achievable with the specialized cone-beam CT. PCCT can offer up to 100 µm resolution, improve soft-tissue contrast, and provide faster scanning times, which are crucial for detailed dental diagnosis and treatment planning. Using semiconductor detectors, PCCT produces sharper images and can potentially reduce the number of scans required, thereby decreasing patient radiation exposure. This review aimed to explore the potential benefits of PCCT in dental imaging. Methods: This review analyzed the literature on PCCT in dental imaging from January 2010 to February 2024, sourced from PubMed, Scopus, and Web of Science databases, focusing on high-resolution, patient safety, and diagnostic efficiency in dental structure assessment. We included English-language articles, case studies, letters, observational studies, and randomized controlled trials while excluding duplicates and studies unrelated to PCCT’s application in dental imaging. Results: Studies have highlighted the superiority of PCCT in reducing artifacts, which are often problematic, compared to conventional CBCT and traditional CT scans, due to metallic dental implants, particularly when used with virtual monoenergetic imaging and iterative metal artifact reduction, thereby improving implant imaging. This review acknowledges limitations, such as the potential for overlooking other advanced imaging technologies, a narrow study timeframe, the lack of real-world clinical application data in this field, and costs. Conclusions: PCCT represents a promising advancement in dental imaging, offering high-resolution visuals, enhanced contrast, and rapid scanning with reduced radiation exposure. Full article
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10 pages, 2880 KiB  
Technical Note
Robotic-Assisted Minimally Invasive Direct Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting: A Surgical Technique
by Laura Giroletti, Ascanio Graniero and Alfonso Agnino
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2435; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082435 - 22 Apr 2024
Viewed by 566
Abstract
In recent years, there has been a growing interest in robotic-assisted coronary artery revascularization in Europe. Two different types of surgery can be performed using a robotic platform: RA-MIDCAB, in which the mammary artery is harvested endoscopically with robotic assistance and off-pump bypass [...] Read more.
In recent years, there has been a growing interest in robotic-assisted coronary artery revascularization in Europe. Two different types of surgery can be performed using a robotic platform: RA-MIDCAB, in which the mammary artery is harvested endoscopically with robotic assistance and off-pump bypass graft is achieved under direct vision through mini thoracotomy, and TE-CAB, completely robotically performed. We started the robotic cardiac surgery program for mitral valve disease in our hospital, Humanitas Gavazzeni (Bergamo, Italy), in 2019; and in 2021, we addressed our experience with RA-MIDCAB. After a learning curve period, we have developed our technique to optimize the benefits offered by the robotic platform, tailoring strategy to individual patients, based on preoperative radiological images. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Clinical Advances in Ischemic Heart Disease)
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2 pages, 153 KiB  
Comment
Comment on Grabala et al. Radiological Outcomes of Magnetically Controlled Growing Rods for the Treatment of Children with Various Etiologies of Early-Onset Scoliosis—A Multicenter Study. J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13, 1529
by Casper S. Tabeling, Justin V. C. Lemans and Moyo C. Kruyt
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2434; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082434 - 22 Apr 2024
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 327
Abstract
We read with great interest the study titled “Radiological Outcomes of Magnetically Controlled Growing Rods for the Treatment of Children with Various Etiologies of Early-Onset Scoliosis—A Multicenter Study” by Grabala and colleagues [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Spinal Disorders: Current Treatment and Future Opportunities: Part II)
10 pages, 843 KiB  
Article
Influence of a Concomitant Medial Meniscus Injury on Knee Joint Function and Osteoarthritis Presence after Anterior Cruciate Ligament Reconstruction
by Darian Bayerl, Lukas B. Moser, Markus Neubauer, Johannes Neugebauer, Dietmar Dammerer, Markus Winnisch and Rudolf Schabus
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2433; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082433 - 22 Apr 2024
Viewed by 591
Abstract
(1) Background: The aim of this study was to investigate how a medial meniscus injury accompanying an anterior cruciate ligament rupture affects the clinical outcome 10 years after ACL reconstruction. (2) Methods: A total of 37 patients who received anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction [...] Read more.
(1) Background: The aim of this study was to investigate how a medial meniscus injury accompanying an anterior cruciate ligament rupture affects the clinical outcome 10 years after ACL reconstruction. (2) Methods: A total of 37 patients who received anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction (ACLR) were included in this retrospective study. Two groups were analyzed at a single follow-up of 10 years: (i) “isolated (ACLR)” (n = 20) and (ii) “ACLR with medial meniscal injury” (n = 17). The following clinical scores were recorded: International Knee Documentation Committee (IKDC), the Knee Injury and Osteoarthritis Outcome Score (KOOS), Lysholm Score and Tegner Activity Score. To determine the degree of osteoarthritis the Kellgren–Lawrence score was used. (3) Results: The “isolated ACLR” study group scored significantly higher (p < 0.05) on the IKDC subjective questionnaire (mean: 88.4) than the “ACLR with medial meniscus injury” group (mean: 81). The KOOS category “activities of daily living” showed significantly better results in the isolated ACLR group (p < 0.05). The “ACLR with medial meniscus injury” group had significantly higher degree of osteoarthritis (p < 0.05). No significant differences were found in all the other clinical scores. (4) Conclusions: The results of this study further indicate that patients with a concomitant medial meniscus injury have slightly more discomfort in everyday life and increased risk of developing osteoarthritis 10 years after surgery. Full article
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9 pages, 220 KiB  
Article
The Outcome after Laser Therapy of Monochorionic Twin Pregnancies Complicated by Twin-Twin Transfusion Syndrome with Coexistent Selective Fetal Growth Restriction
by Javier U. Ortiz, Johanna Guggenberger, Oliver Graupner, Eva Ostermayer, Bettina Kuschel and Silvia M. Lobmaier
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2432; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082432 - 21 Apr 2024
Viewed by 615
Abstract
Background: Most previous studies evaluated outcomes of twin–twin transfusion syndrome (TTTS) without considering the coexistence of selective fetal growth restriction (sFGR). The objectives of this study were to compare twin survival and pregnancy complications after laser therapy of TTTS with and without sFGR. [...] Read more.
Background: Most previous studies evaluated outcomes of twin–twin transfusion syndrome (TTTS) without considering the coexistence of selective fetal growth restriction (sFGR). The objectives of this study were to compare twin survival and pregnancy complications after laser therapy of TTTS with and without sFGR. Methods: For this purpose, a retrospective cohort study including 98 monochorionic diamniotic twins and three dichorionic triamniotic triplets treated in a single tertiary center was conducted. Results: Overall, 46 twins had selective fetal growth restriction (26 type I, 13 type II, 7 type III). At birth, donor survival (61% vs. 91%), double survival (57% vs. 82%), and overall survival (75% vs. 88%) were significantly lower in the group with coexistent sFGR. Recipient survival (89% vs. 86%), miscarriage (7% vs. 2%), PPROM < 32 weeks (48% vs. 29%), and preterm delivery < 32 weeks (52% vs. 45%) were not significantly higher in the group with coexistent sFGR. Donor twins with sFGR type I (69% vs. 91%) and types II–III (50% vs. 91%) showed significantly lower survival than those without sFGR. Multivariate regression analysis identified sFGR and its subtypes as independent predictors of donor demise. Conclusions: the coexistence of sFGR in TTTS pregnancies was associated with poor donor outcomes and is probably the most important predictor of donor survival. Full article
11 pages, 231 KiB  
Article
Predisposition and Working Conditions for the Occurrence of Lumbar Syndrome in Medical Workers of the Clinical Center of Montenegro during the COVID-19 Pandemic
by Dragana Jovanović, Dragana Backović, Ana Tomas, Zoran Bukumirić and Bojan Koprivica
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2431; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082431 - 21 Apr 2024
Viewed by 559
Abstract
Background: Lumbar pain is a condition of discomfort in the lower back caused by numerous factors, lasting for short or longer periods of time. Healthcare professionals, regardless of the type of care they are engaged in, are at risk of lumbar pain. This [...] Read more.
Background: Lumbar pain is a condition of discomfort in the lower back caused by numerous factors, lasting for short or longer periods of time. Healthcare professionals, regardless of the type of care they are engaged in, are at risk of lumbar pain. This is the first study that deals with the problem of lumbar syndrome in health workers in Montenegro. Methods: This cross-sectional study included full-time health workers employed in the Clinical Center of Montenegro who were involved in the treatment of COVID-19 patients during 2020 and 2021. The survey consisted of general questions for collecting socio-demographic and COVID-19 engagement data; the Modified Nordic questionnaire was used for the analysis of musculoskeletal symptoms, and the EQ-5D—questionnaire was used to measure the quality of life associated with health. Results: The one-year prevalence of lumbar pain was 68.1%. Factors associated with lumbar pain were as follows: a higher degree of physical inactivity (each subject with a higher degree of physical inactivity had a 24% higher chance of occurrence of lumbar pain); a higher degree of load and over-engagement during the COVID-19 pandemic (each subject with a higher degree of workload had a nearly 50% higher chance of occurrence of lumbar pain); duration of engagement during the COVID-19 pandemic (subjects engaged up to a month were 4 times more likely to develop lumbar pain, and subjects engaged for 1–3 months were 3.5 times more likely to develop lumbar pain compared to those who were not engaged in COVID-19 treatment). This study also confirms that lumbar syndrome affects the quality of life of health workers. Conclusions: Lumbar syndrome is highly prevalent among healthcare professionals in the Clinical Center of Montenegro, especially in the population of nurses, where evidence-based preventive measures are needed. Full article
10 pages, 708 KiB  
Article
Fragility Fractures in End-Stage Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) Population: Patient-Related and CKD-Related Factor Analysis—A Single-Center Experience
by Domenico De Mauro, Gianmarco De Luca, Silvia Marino, Amarildo Smakaj, Giuseppe Rovere, Francesco Liuzza, Marcello Covino, Pierluigi Fulignati, Giuseppe Grandaliano and Omar El Ezzo
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2430; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082430 - 21 Apr 2024
Viewed by 876
Abstract
Background: Chronic kidney disease (CKD) stands as a prevalent global health concern, and mineral and bone disease are among the most impactful consequences. A severe complication arising from mineral and bone disease is the occurrence of fragility fractures, which disproportionately affect individuals with [...] Read more.
Background: Chronic kidney disease (CKD) stands as a prevalent global health concern, and mineral and bone disease are among the most impactful consequences. A severe complication arising from mineral and bone disease is the occurrence of fragility fractures, which disproportionately affect individuals with CKD compared to the general population. The prevalence of these fractures impacts both survival rates and quality of life. The aims of this study are analyzing and identifying (i) patient-related risk factors and (ii) CKD-related risk factors to contribute to the development of preventive measures for fragility fractures for this population. Methods: A retrospective, single-center observational study was conducted, encompassing patient data from the years 2021 to 2023. Registry data were recorded, including patient-related and CKD-related data. Patients were interviewed about traumatological history, and their answers were recorded. Logistic regression analysis was employed to investigate the association between independent variables and dependent variables. Results: Eighty-four patients, with a mean age of 64.3 ± 15.2 years and a male percentage of 58.3%, were included in this study. Among them, 19.5% exhibited smoking habits. The mean Charlson Comorbidity Index was 3.06 ± 1.21. All patients were diagnosed with end-stage chronic kidney disease, with mean durations of 208 months from the diagnosis and 84.5 months from the beginning of dialysis. The logistic regression analysis, adjusted for age, sex, and CCI, revealed that smoking habits play a significant role as a risk factor for fragility fractures in lower limbs (p: 0.011 *). The incidence of fragility fractures increases directly proportionally to the time since diagnosis (p-value: 0.021 *) and the beginning of dialysis treatment (p-value: 0.001 *). Conclusions: Among patient-related factors, smoking habits seem to significantly affect lower-limb fracture rates (p < 0.05), whereas among CKD-related factors, time since CKD diagnosis and time since the beginning of dialysis treatment are directly related to higher risks of fragility fractures. No relevant correlations emerged in the studied treatments, except for a reduction in proximal femur fracture occurrence when patients underwent a combined treatment of a calcimimetic and a vitamin D analog. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in the Management of Pathological Fractures)
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19 pages, 565 KiB  
Article
Role of IL-6, IL-10 and TNFα Gene Variants in Preterm Birth
by Mirta Kadivnik, Deni Plečko, Kristina Kralik, Nena Arvaj and Jasenka Wagner
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2429; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082429 - 21 Apr 2024
Viewed by 566
Abstract
Background: The association of gene variants for interleukin 6 (IL-6) (rs1800796), interleukin 10 (IL-10) (rs1800896) and tumor necrosis factorα (TNFα (rs1800629) with the occurrence of spontaneous preterm birth (PTB) was investigated to determine whether these genetic variants are a risk factor. Methods: A [...] Read more.
Background: The association of gene variants for interleukin 6 (IL-6) (rs1800796), interleukin 10 (IL-10) (rs1800896) and tumor necrosis factorα (TNFα (rs1800629) with the occurrence of spontaneous preterm birth (PTB) was investigated to determine whether these genetic variants are a risk factor. Methods: A total of 199 blood samples from pregnant women who had given birth prematurely and 200 control blood samples were analyzed to determine single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) of genes for IL-6 (rs1800796), IL-10 (rs1800896) and TNFα (rs1800629). The control samples were samples from pregnant women with term delivery. The isolation of DNA was performed on mini-spin columns according to the manufacturer’s protocol. The quality and purity of the isolated DNA were tested using a Qubit 3 fluorometer. Genotyping was performed with an ABI PRISM 7500 SDS using TaqMan SNP genotyping assays. The genotypes obtained were analyzed using the 7500 Software v2.3 package. Results: Carriers of the A/A genotype for the rs1800629 SNP of the TNFα gene have a 4.81 times greater chance of late-onset PTB compared to carriers of the G/G and A/G genotypes in the recessive inheritance model. The presence of the G/G genotype in the recessive inheritance model compared with the G/A and A/A genotypes for the rs1800896 SNP of the IL-10 gene represents a potentially protective factor, with mothers in the term-birth group having an almost 2-fold lower odds of PTB in general and an almost 10-fold lower odds of early PTB. On the other hand, carriers of the A/G genotype of rs1800896 have a 1.54-fold higher chance of preterm birth in general and a 1.6-fold higher chance of late preterm birth in the superdominant inheritance model compared to the A/A and G/G genotypes in the group of mothers with PTB. In this study, no association was found between PTB and the rs1800796 SNP of the IL-6 gene. Conclusions: rs1800629 in mothers was associated with PTB. rs1800896 shows a potentially protective effect for the occurrence of PTB in this study. No association was found between PTB and rs1800796. Full article
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10 pages, 1475 KiB  
Article
Evaluation of Age and Sex Differences in Contemporary versus High-Sensitivity Troponin I Measurement in Hospitalized Patients
by Hussam Alkhalaileh, Ruhan Wei, Ashly Cordero Rivera, Mustafa Goksel, Jason K. Y. Lee, Ernest Mazzaferri, Jr., JoAnna Jones and Jieli Li
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2428; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082428 - 21 Apr 2024
Viewed by 516
Abstract
Background: With the transition from the contemporary (cTnI) to high-sensitivity troponin assay (hs-cTnI), concerns have arisen regarding the diagnostic differences between these two assays due to analytical distinctions. This study aims to evaluate the age and sex differences between these two assays, as [...] Read more.
Background: With the transition from the contemporary (cTnI) to high-sensitivity troponin assay (hs-cTnI), concerns have arisen regarding the diagnostic differences between these two assays due to analytical distinctions. This study aims to evaluate the age and sex differences between these two assays, as well as the differences resulting from using two different 99th percentile values of the high-sensitivity troponin assay. Method: A retrospective observational study was conducted at an academic medical center, encompassing a total of 449 lithium heparin plasma samples included in the dataset. Both contemporary and high-sensitivity troponin were simultaneously measured using Siemens ADVIA Centaur analyzers. Two sets of sex-specific 99th percentile URLs from the Siemens study (cutoff-1) and Universal Sample Bank data (cutoff-2) were used for the data analysis. Results: The use of cutoff-1 or cutoff-2 had a negligible impact on troponin classification. Troponin elevation significantly increased in individuals > 50 years old for males and >40 years old for females, with both troponin assays. A receiver operating characteristic analysis did not find significant differences between the two assays. The Kaplan–Meier curves showed no differences in survival in cTnI according to the non-sex-specific 99th URL or hs-cTnI (cutoff-2) but showed a slight difference in survival in hs-cTnI (cutoff-1). Conclusions: Overall, there were no significant differences in age and sex in the diagnostic performance between the contemporary and high-sensitivity troponin assays. Selection criteria for the establishment of the 99th percentile URL should be standardized to avoid the misinterpretation of the troponin results. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Cardiology)
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12 pages, 1784 KiB  
Article
Usefulness of Combined Measurement of Surfactant Protein D, Thrombin–Antithrombin III Complex, D-Dimer, and Plasmin–α2 Plasmin Inhibitor Complex in Acute Exacerbation of Interstitial Lung Disease: A Retrospective Cohort Study
by Yuichiro Takeshita, Masako To, Yusuke Kurosawa, Naho Furusho, Toru Kinouchi, Kenji Tsushima, Yuji Tada, Yasuo To and Seiichiro Sakao
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2427; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082427 - 21 Apr 2024
Viewed by 501
Abstract
Background/Objectives: The coagulation cascade due to tissue damage is considered to be one of the causes of poor prognostic outcomes in patients with acute exacerbations of interstitial lung disease (AE-ILD). This study aimed to confirm coagulopathy in AE-ILD by evaluating the differences [...] Read more.
Background/Objectives: The coagulation cascade due to tissue damage is considered to be one of the causes of poor prognostic outcomes in patients with acute exacerbations of interstitial lung disease (AE-ILD). This study aimed to confirm coagulopathy in AE-ILD by evaluating the differences in the clinical characteristics of coagulation/fibrinolysis markers between stable ILD and AE-ILD. Methods: Overall, 81 patients were enrolled in this retrospective study and categorized into the following two groups: a chronic ILD group comprising 63 outpatients and an acute ILD group comprising 18 inpatients diagnosed with AE-ILD. Serum markers, including thrombin–antithrombin III complex (TAT), D-dimer, plasmin–α2 plasmin inhibitor complex (PIC), and surfactant protein D (SP-D), were compared between the groups. Results: Among the 18 patients with acute ILD, 17 did not meet the International Society of Thrombosis and Hemostasis scoring system for disseminated intravascular coagulation. In acute ILD, the SP-D levels were statistically significantly positively correlated with TAT, D-dimer, and PIC levels, while the Krebs von den Lungen 6 (KL-6) levels showed no correlation with any of these coagulation/fibrinolytic markers. A positive correlation was observed between SP-D levels and TAT, D-dimer, and PIC levels in acute ILD. Serum TAT, D-dimer, and PIC all showed good area under the receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve (AUC) values in ROC analysis for the diagnosis of acute ILD. Conclusions: In the clinical setting of AE-ILD, it may be important to focus not only on alveolar damage markers such as SP-D but also on coagulation/fibrinolytic markers including TAT, D-dimer, and PIC. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Clinical Advances in Interstitial Lung Diseases)
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9 pages, 1211 KiB  
Article
Alterations in Corneal Sensitivity, Staining and Biomechanics of Alopecia Areata Patients: Novel Findings in a Case-Control Study
by Barbara Burgos-Blasco, Patricia Burgos-Blasco, Olivia Rodriguez-Quet, Pedro Arriola-Villalobos, Jose Ignacio Fernandez-Vigo, David Saceda-Corralo, Sergio Vaño-Galvan and Julián García-Feijóo
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2426; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082426 - 21 Apr 2024
Viewed by 565
Abstract
Background: A higher prevalence of ophthalmological alterations in systemic inflammatory diseases has been demonstrated. Objectives: Our objectives were to determine anterior segment findings and corneal properties in alopecia areata (AA). Methods: This is a case-control study. Severe AA patients (Severity [...] Read more.
Background: A higher prevalence of ophthalmological alterations in systemic inflammatory diseases has been demonstrated. Objectives: Our objectives were to determine anterior segment findings and corneal properties in alopecia areata (AA). Methods: This is a case-control study. Severe AA patients (Severity of Alopecia Tool > 50%) and non-AA subjects underwent a general ophthalmological examination, a Pentacam and Corvis scheimpflug technology examination (Oculus Optikgeräte GmbH, Wetzlar, Germany). Visual acuity, refractive error, corneal aesthesiometry, and biomechanical and topographic variables were registered. Results: In total, 25 AA patients (50 eyes; 50.6 ± 8.1 years) and 29 controls (58 eyes; 49.4 ± 8.6 years) were included. AA patients had decreased corneal sensitivity, more corneal staining, and a more advanced cataract (p ≤ 0.004). The anterior topographic flat meridian, mean anterior keratometry, and maximum keratometric point were increased in AA (p ≤ 0.040), while pachymetry values were thinner (p ≤ 0.001). Keratoconus index and Belin/Ambrosio-enhanced ectasia total deviation display were increased (p ≤ 0.007). Two eyes with a topographic diagnosis of keratoconus and four eyes with subclinical keratoconus were detected in AA. Applanation lengths were smaller in AA (p ≤ 0.029). The Corvis Biomechanical Index was increased in AA (p = 0.022). Conclusions: AA patients have reduced corneal sensitivity and increased corneal staining. Topographic and biomechanical parameters are altered, and there could be a higher risk of keratoconus, thus possibly requiring routine ophthalmological examination. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Ophthalmology)
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11 pages, 237 KiB  
Article
Vascular Access Perception and Quality of Life of Haemodialysis Patients
by Kamil Sikora, Agnieszka Zwolak, Robert Jan Łuczyk, Agnieszka Wawryniuk and Marta Łuczyk
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2425; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082425 - 21 Apr 2024
Viewed by 446
Abstract
Background: Patient quality of life is widely used as a non-clinical determinant of care. For patients undergoing hemodialysis, vascular access is vital to the delivery of hemodialysis and its function may affect not only the clinical outcome of treatment but also the [...] Read more.
Background: Patient quality of life is widely used as a non-clinical determinant of care. For patients undergoing hemodialysis, vascular access is vital to the delivery of hemodialysis and its function may affect not only the clinical outcome of treatment but also the overall quality of life of the patient, highlighting the need for increased efforts to improve the quality of hemodialysis vascular access care. The objective of this study was to evaluate the correlation between vascular access perception and quality of life in patients undergoing hemodialysis. Methods: A total of 202 patients with active hemodialysis vascular access were included in the study. Quality of life was assessed using the Kidney Disease Quality of Life Instrument (KDQOL™) questionnaire, while vascular access perception was evaluated using the Vascular Access Questionnaire (VAQ). Results: The study presented evidence on the influence of vascular access for hemodialysis patients on their quality of life. This impact is related to factors directly associated with vascular access, such as the type of access and the patient’s subjective evaluation of the access. Conclusions: The perception of vascular access is one of the factors that determines the quality of life of hemodialysis patients. The quality of life of hemodialysis patients decreases as the number of vascular access-related problems increases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Nephrology & Urology)
9 pages, 667 KiB  
Article
The Relationship between Body Mass Index, Body Dissatisfaction and Mood Symptoms in Pregnant Women
by Caterina Grano, Mariacarolina Vacca and Caterina Lombardo
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2424; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082424 - 21 Apr 2024
Viewed by 443
Abstract
Background: High body mass and adiposity during pregnancy can contribute to psychological distress, and body dissatisfaction may be a potential underlying mechanism of this association. Objective. This study aimed to evaluate the mediational role of body dissatisfaction in the relationship between body [...] Read more.
Background: High body mass and adiposity during pregnancy can contribute to psychological distress, and body dissatisfaction may be a potential underlying mechanism of this association. Objective. This study aimed to evaluate the mediational role of body dissatisfaction in the relationship between body mass index (BMI) and depressive and anxious symptoms, respectively. Methods: Given the cross-sectional design of this study, two alternative models were investigated, positing that BMI was related to depressive (Model 1a) and anxious symptoms (Model 2a), which, in turn, predicted body dissatisfaction. Seventy-two pregnant women in the third trimester of pregnancy completed the Body Image Disturbance Questionnaire, the Beck Depression Inventory-II and the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory, as well as a demographic form assessing their BMI. Results: As hypothesized, body dissatisfaction mediated the relationship between BMI and psychopathological symptoms. Moreover, the alternative models of reverse mediation were also significant, suggesting that psychopathological symptoms mediated the relationship between BMI and body dissatisfaction. Findings from both the hypothesized and alternative models suggested that, on the one hand, higher distress symptoms associated with body dissatisfaction would result from high BMI and, on the other hand, that body dissatisfaction may result from the effect of BMI on distress symptoms. Conclusions: The present study suggests that body image theory and practice should be implemented by the inclusion of evidence-based clinical interventions for promoting psychological well-being during the antenatal period. Full article
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22 pages, 1584 KiB  
Review
Advancing the Clinical and Molecular Understanding of Cornelia de Lange Syndrome: A Multidisciplinary Pediatric Case Series and Review of the Literature
by Karolina Gruca-Stryjak, Emilia Doda-Nowak, Julia Dzierla, Karolina Wróbel, Marta Szymankiewicz-Bręborowicz and Jan Mazela
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2423; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082423 - 21 Apr 2024
Viewed by 680
Abstract
Cornelia de Lange syndrome (CdLS) is a complex genetic disorder with distinct facial features, growth limitations, and limb anomalies. Its broad clinical spectrum presents significant challenges in pediatric diagnosis and management. Due to cohesin complex mutations, the disorder’s variable presentation requires extensive research [...] Read more.
Cornelia de Lange syndrome (CdLS) is a complex genetic disorder with distinct facial features, growth limitations, and limb anomalies. Its broad clinical spectrum presents significant challenges in pediatric diagnosis and management. Due to cohesin complex mutations, the disorder’s variable presentation requires extensive research to refine care and improve outcomes. This article provides a case series review of pediatric CdLS patients alongside a comprehensive literature review, exploring clinical variability and the relationship between genotypic changes and phenotypic outcomes. It also discusses the evolution of diagnostic and therapeutic techniques, emphasizing innovations in genetic testing, including detecting mosaicism and novel genetic variations. The aim is to synthesize case studies with current research to advance our understanding of CdLS and the effectiveness of management strategies in pediatric healthcare. This work highlights the need for an integrated, evidence-based approach to diagnosis and treatment. It aims to fill existing research gaps and advocate for holistic care protocols and tailored treatment plans for CdLS patients, ultimately improving their quality of life. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Diagnosis and Treatment of Rare Diseases)
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14 pages, 1277 KiB  
Article
Fluorescence-Guided Laparoscopy after Oral Hypericin Administration for Staging of Locally Advanced Gastric Cancer—A Pilot Study
by Can Yurttas, Philipp Horvath, Imma Fischer, Silvia Wagner, Karolin Thiel, Ruth Ladurner, Ingmar Königsrainer, Alfred Königsrainer, Matthias Schwab, Stefan Beckert and Markus W. Löffler
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2422; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082422 - 21 Apr 2024
Viewed by 578
Abstract
(1) Background: Laparoscopic staging is essential in gastric cancer (GC) to rule out peritoneal metastasis (PM). Hypericin, a plant-derived fluorescent compound, has been suggested to improve laparoscopic visualization of PM from GC. This prospective, single-arm, open-label clinical trial aimed to assess the feasibility [...] Read more.
(1) Background: Laparoscopic staging is essential in gastric cancer (GC) to rule out peritoneal metastasis (PM). Hypericin, a plant-derived fluorescent compound, has been suggested to improve laparoscopic visualization of PM from GC. This prospective, single-arm, open-label clinical trial aimed to assess the feasibility and safety of oral hypericin administration as well as the suitability of fluorescence-guided laparoscopy (FGL) for improving the sensitivity and specificity of staging in GC patients (EudraCT-Number: 2015-005277-21; clinicaltrials.gov identifier: NCT-02840331). (2) Methods: GC patients received Laif® 900, an approved hypericin-containing phytopharmaceutical, once orally two to four hours before white light and ultraviolet light laparoscopy. The peritoneal cancer index was evaluated, biopsies taken and hypericin concentrations in serum and peritoneal tissue were determined by mass spectrometry. (3) Results: Between 2017 and 2021, out of 63 patients screened for eligibility, 50 patients were enrolled and treated per protocol. The study intervention was shown to be feasible and safe in all patients. Standard laparoscopy revealed suspicious lesions in 27 patients (54%), among whom 16 (59%) were diagnosed with PM. FGL identified suspicious areas in 25 patients (50%), among whom PM was confirmed in 13 cases (52%). Although hypericin concentrations in serum reached up to 5.64 ng/mL, no hypericin was detectable in peritoneal tissue biopsies. (4) Conclusions: FGL in patients with GC was shown to be feasible but futile in this study. Sufficient levels of hypericin should be ensured in target tissue prior to reassessing FGL with hypericin. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Peritoneal Carcinomatosis: Current Treatment and Future Options)
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14 pages, 1541 KiB  
Systematic Review
Comparative Outcomes of Open Radical Cystectomy vs. Robot-Assisted Approaches with Intracorporeal and Extracorporeal Urinary Diversion: A Meta-Analysis and Network Meta-Analysis of Perioperative and Quality of Life Outcomes
by Rocco Simone Flammia, Leslie Claire Licari, Eugenio Bologna, Riccardo Mastroianni, Flavia Proietti, Gabriele Tuderti, Umberto Anceschi, Aldo Brassetti, Antonio Franco, Cosimo De Nunzio, Riccardo Autorino, Costantino Leonardo and Giuseppe Simone
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2421; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082421 - 21 Apr 2024
Viewed by 541
Abstract
Background: To conduct a comprehensive systematic review and network meta-analysis of RCTs that compare outcomes of robot-assisted radical cystectomy (RARC) with intra- or extracorporeal urinary diversion (ICUD or ECUD) and the standard open approach (oRC). Methods: A systematic review identified RCTs including patients [...] Read more.
Background: To conduct a comprehensive systematic review and network meta-analysis of RCTs that compare outcomes of robot-assisted radical cystectomy (RARC) with intra- or extracorporeal urinary diversion (ICUD or ECUD) and the standard open approach (oRC). Methods: A systematic review identified RCTs including patients aged >18 years with non-metastatic bladder cancer treated with RARC (ICUD or ECUD) vs. oRC and reporting peri- and post-operative outcomes and quality of life (QoL) assessment. Standard and network metanalyses were performed. Results: Data from 1024 patients included in eight RCTs were analyzed. The standard meta-analysis found that RARC had longer OT, lower EBL, and a lower transfusion rate compared to oRC (all p < 0.001). No significant differences in terms of LOS between the ICUD vs. ECUD vs. ORC were recorded. RARC patients demonstrated better scores in fatigue, insomnia, pain, physical functioning, and role functioning—according to QoL assessment—compared to ORC at early follow-up, despite no difference at baselines. Finally, at network metanalysis, ICUD (OR = 0.74, p < 0.001) but not ECUD (OR = 0.92, p < 0.08) yielded a lower rate of high-grade 90-day complications compared to ORC despite longer OT (MD = 89.56, p = 0.0351). Conclusions: RARC represents a safe and feasible option to reduce perioperative bleeding with no definitive impact on LOS compared to ORC. Interestingly, ICUD may reduce the burden of 90-day complications to a greater extent than ECUD. Nonetheless, surgeons should be aware of the extended OT and steep learning curve of ICUD. Finally, RARC may provide some short-term benefits in terms of QoL, but more research is needed to determine its long-term effects. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Innovative Surgical Researches: 2nd Edition)
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12 pages, 1444 KiB  
Article
Clinical Outcomes of Severe Rhinosinusitis Complicated with Cavernous Sinus Syndrome
by Jin-Yi Lin, Chien-Lin Liu, Zheng-Yan Dai, Yu-Ting Li, Yung-An Tsou, Chia-Der Lin, Chih-Jaan Tai and Liang-Chun Shih
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2420; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082420 - 21 Apr 2024
Viewed by 603
Abstract
Background: Various diseases involving the cavernous sinus can cause a condition called cavernous sinus syndrome (CSS), which is characterized by ophthalmoplegia or sensory deficits over the face resulting from the compression effect of internal structure. While tumor compression is the most reported cause [...] Read more.
Background: Various diseases involving the cavernous sinus can cause a condition called cavernous sinus syndrome (CSS), which is characterized by ophthalmoplegia or sensory deficits over the face resulting from the compression effect of internal structure. While tumor compression is the most reported cause of CSS, statistical data on CSS caused by infections are limited. Its risk factors, treatment methods, and clinical outcomes are not well-documented. Methods: In this retrospective study, we reviewed the data of patients admitted to a tertiary medical center from 2015 to 2022 with a diagnosis of acute and chronic sinusitis and at least one diagnostic code for CSS symptoms. We manually reviewed whether patients were involved in two or more of the following cranial nerves (CN): CN III, CN IV, CN V, or CN VI, or at least one of these nerves with a neuroimaging-confirmed lesion in the cavernous sinus. Results: Nine patients were diagnosed with rhinosinusitis-related CSS. The most common comorbidity was type 2 diabetes, and the most common clinical manifestations were diplopia and blurred vision. The sphenoid sinus was the most affected sinus. One patient expired due to a severe brain abscess infection without surgery. The remaining patients underwent functional endoscopic sinus surgery, and 50% of the pathology reports indicated fungal infections. Staphylococcus spp. was the most cultured bacteria, and Amoxycillin/Clavulanate was the most used antibiotic. Only four patients had total recovery during the follow-up one year later. Conclusions: CSS is a rare but serious complication of rhinosinusitis. Patients with diabetes and the elderly may be at a higher risk for this complication. Even after treatment, some patients may still have neurological symptoms. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Otolaryngology)
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21 pages, 3564 KiB  
Review
The Spectrum of Cutaneous Manifestations in Lupus Erythematosus: A Comprehensive Review
by Aleksandra Fijałkowska, Marcelina Kądziela and Agnieszka Żebrowska
J. Clin. Med. 2024, 13(8), 2419; https://doi.org/10.3390/jcm13082419 - 21 Apr 2024
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Abstract
Lupus erythematosus (LE) is an autoimmune inflammatory disease with complex etiology. LE may present as a systemic disorder affecting multiple organs or be limited solely to the skin. Cutaneous LE (CLE) manifests with a wide range of skin lesions divided into acute, subacute [...] Read more.
Lupus erythematosus (LE) is an autoimmune inflammatory disease with complex etiology. LE may present as a systemic disorder affecting multiple organs or be limited solely to the skin. Cutaneous LE (CLE) manifests with a wide range of skin lesions divided into acute, subacute and chronic subtypes. Despite classic forms of CLE, such as malar rash or discoid LE, little-known variants may occur, for instance hypertrophic LE, chilblain LE and lupus panniculitis. There are also numerous non-specific manifestations including vascular abnormalities, alopecia, pigmentation and nail abnormalities or rheumatoid nodules. Particular cutaneous manifestations correlate with disease activity and thus have great diagnostic value. However, diversity of the clinical picture and resemblance to certain entities delay making an accurate diagnosis The aim of this review is to discuss the variety of cutaneous manifestations and indicate the clinical features of particular CLE types which facilitate differential diagnosis with other dermatoses. Although in diagnostically difficult cases histopathological examination plays a key role in the differential diagnosis of LE, quick and accurate diagnosis ensures adequate therapy implementation and high quality of life for patients. Cooperation between physicians of various specialties is therefore crucial in the management of patients with uncommon and photosensitive skin lesions. Full article
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