Background and purpose: Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) was spreading all over the world. Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) primarily invades and infects the lungs of humans leading to COVID-19. Mild to severe clinical symptoms such as fever, cough,
and shortness of breath were existed in those patients. One of the most common changes in these patients was abnormal blood routine. However, uncertainty remains regarding the dynamic characteristics of platelet in COVID-19 patients due to limited data. Therefore, we aimed to analyze the association
between dynamic characteristics of blood platelet and disease severity, and to identify new monitoring indicators to treat the COVID-19 patients. Methods: In this cohort study, 398 COVID-19 patients treated in the Shenzhen Third People’s hospital from December 16, 2019 to March
26, 2020 were collected and participated. All data of participants including the clinical characteristics, imaging and laboratory information were collected. All patients included in our study were classified as four groups (mild, common, severe, and critical types) regarding clinical symptoms
and relevant severe failures based on the Diagnosis Criteria. Platelet count was examined at the baseline and every 3–5 days during hospitalization. Results: The platelet count varied with clinical classifications. The platelet count in mild type was normal without significant
fluctuation. While the blood platelet count of most common and severe patients had obvious fluctuations, showing as a dynamic change that first rose and then fell to the level at admission, which was consistent with the trend of lung inflammation. Bone marrow smears further showed that bone
marrow hyperplasia was normal in mild, common and severe type patients, and megakaryocytes and their platelet-producing functions were not abnormal. Conclusions: Our results suggested that the dynamic changes of platelet count might be a predictor of lung inflammation alteration for
COVID-19 patients. The changes in platelet count might be a responsive pattern secondary to lung inflammation. The function of bone marrow may be slightly affected by SARS-CoV-2 infection.
BackgroundInsomnia is a health problem that particularly affects people with schizophrenia. Its repercussions go beyond the disorder itself and affect many areas of life. The aim of the present study is to explore the clinical symptoms and consequences of insomnia in patients diagnosed with schizophrenic disorder and the perceptions of these patients regarding the care they receive.MethodsThe study takes a qualitative approach and uses semi-structured interviews to conduct a descriptive and interpretive analysis of 3 clinically different clusters of patients. These 3 clusters have been defined by using two-step cluster analysis based on the results of the ISI (Insomnia Severity Index) and EQ-5D scales (EuroQol-5D) and the presence of certain diagnostic symptoms in a sample of 170 patients. The final sample was 31 subjects. The analysis was based on a hermeneutic analysis of the patients' narratives regarding their experiences of insomnia.ResultsThe patients' narratives show differences in the intensity and experience of insomnia depending on the severity, as well as its impact on their quality of life. Insomnia has a huge emotional impact. Participants describe ruminations and obsessive thoughts as a key factor hindering falling asleep. Some of the everyday actions they perform encourage the chronicity of insomnia. The desired health response must include interventions that are effective, such as cognitive-behavioural therapy, and powerful, such as pharmacological solutions. Psychoeducation and advice on sleep hygiene are highly valued tools as preventive strategies.ConclusionsTo know the experience of users gives us a more comprehensive understanding of insomnia complexities and brings some new intervention strategies in patients with mental disorders. It is important that health professionals intervene preventively to stop the disorder from becoming chronic.
AbstractWhite-matter abnormalities, including increases in extracellular free-water, are implicated in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia. Recent advances in diffusion magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) enable free-water levels to be indexed. However, the brain levels in patients with schizophrenia have not yet been systematically investigated. We aimed to meta-analyse white-matter free-water levels in patients with schizophrenia compared to healthy volunteers. We performed a literature search in EMBASE, MEDLINE, and PsycINFO databases. Diffusion MRI studies reporting free-water in patients with schizophrenia compared to healthy controls were included. We investigated the effect of demographic variables, illness duration, chlorpromazine equivalents of antipsychotic medication, type of scanner, and clinical symptoms severity on free-water measures. Ten studies, including five of first episode of psychosis have investigated free-water levels in schizophrenia, with significantly higher levels reported in whole-brain and specific brain regions (including corona radiata, internal capsule, superior and inferior longitudinal fasciculus, cingulum bundle, and corpus callosum). Six studies, including a total of 614 participants met the inclusion criteria for quantitative analysis. Whole-brain free-water levels were significantly higher in patients relative to healthy volunteers (Hedge’s g = 0.38, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.07–0.69, p = 0.02). Sex moderated this effect, such that smaller effects were seen in samples with more females (z = −2.54, p < 0.05), but antipsychotic dose, illness duration and symptom severity did not. Patients with schizophrenia have increased free-water compared to healthy volunteers. Future studies are necessary to determine the pathological sources of increased free-water, and its relationship with illness duration and severity.
AbstractPulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) is a progressive and rare disease without obvious clinical symptoms that shares characteristics with pulmonary vascular remodeling. Right heart failure in the terminal phase of PAH seriously threatens the lives of patients. This review attempts to comprehensively outline the current state of knowledge on PAH its pathology, pathogenesis, natural medicines therapy, mechanisms and clinical studies to provide potential treatment strategies. Although PAH and pulmonary hypertension have similar pathological features, PAH exhibits significantly elevated pulmonary vascular resistance caused by vascular stenosis and occlusion. Currently, the pathogenesis of PAH is thought to involve multiple factors, primarily including genetic/epigenetic factors, vascular cellular dysregulation, metabolic dysfunction, even inflammation and immunization. Yet many issues regarding PAH need to be clarified, such as the “oestrogen paradox”. About 25 kinds monomers derived from natural medicine have been verified to protect against to PAH via modulating BMPR2/Smad, HIF-1α, PI3K/Akt/mTOR and eNOS/NO/cGMP signalling pathways. Yet limited and single PAH animal models may not corroborate the efficacy of natural medicines, and those natural compounds how to regulate crucial genes, proteins and even microRNA and lncRNA still need to put great attention. Additionally, pharmacokinetic studies and safety evaluation of natural medicines for the treatment of PAH should be undertaken in future studies. Meanwhile, methods for validating the efficacy of natural drugs in multiple PAH animal models and precise clinical design are also urgently needed to promote advances in PAH.
Beta-thalassemia (β-thal) is a congenital hemoglobinopathy explained by a decreased level (β+) or absence (βο) of β-globin gene expression. Microcytic hypochromic anemia and various clinical symptoms comprising severe anemia to clinically nonsymptomatic features. Treatment with an ordered blood transfusion and iron chelator agents can decrease transfusion iron overload that causes normal maturation. These patients also are at high risk for secondary iron overload because of erythropheron (GF15–TWSG1) release from erythroblasts resulting in erythroid hyperplasia. Based on the previous studies, chemicals such as hydroxyurea and 5-azacytidine are useful in treating β-hemoglobinopathy, including β-thal and sickle cell disease (SCD). Regarding both side effects and lifelong treatment of these chemical components, researchers have recently regarded gene-based treatments. These techniques, such as micro RNA gene silencing, viral-mediated gene editing, and clustered regulatory interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)-CAS9 systems, are the most commonly used gene therapy methods. Nowadays, ɣ-globin (fetal globin) gene reactivation is one of the most popular treatments for β-thal. Researches showed that these gene modification methods for γ-globin gene reactivation are also useful in increasing hemoglobin F (HbF) and helping patients with β-thal. In this review study, new therapeutic approaches to manage this disorder are regarded.
Therapy regimens used in patients with inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) have been associated with enhanced risk of viral infections or viral reactivation. Moreover, it is uncertain whether IBD patients have increased risk of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection or infected patients may have an increased risk for severe coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19). Managing severe acute flare in ulcerative colitis during the Covid-19 pandemic is a challenge for clinicians and their patients. The results of the published studies mainly report on the role of the prior medication, but not how to treat severe acute flare of IBD patients with severe Covid-19 pneumonia.
We report the case of a 68-year-old patient with a long history of ulcerative colitis. He was initially admitted to an external hospital because of severe acute flare. The initiation of a high-dose oral cortisone therapy did not improve the clinical symptoms. During the inpatient treatment, he was tested positive for SARS-CoV-2. At admission to our hospital the patient showed severe flare of his ulcerative colitis and increased Covid-19 symptoms. A cortisone-refractory course was noticed. After detailed multidisciplinary risk–benefit assessment, we initiated an intravenous tacrolimus therapy and dose of prednisolone was tapered gradually. After clinical response, the therapy was adjusted to infliximab. Additionally, the Covid-19 pneumonia was kept under control despite immunosuppression and the patient could be discharged in clinical remission.
This case suggest the use of tacrolimus as a bridging therapeutic option for severe acute, cortisone refractory ulcerative colitis in Covid-19 patients. Nevertheless, the best treatment strategy for IBD patients presenting a flare during the outbreak has yet to be defined. Further data for IBD patients under calcineurin inhibitor therapy are urgently needed.
Backgroundamong the manifestations of COVID-19 are Taste and Smell Disorders (TSDs).AimThe aim of the study is to evaluate the sensitivity and specificity of TSDs and other associated symptoms to estimate predictive values for determining SARS-CoV-2 infection.Design and settingRetrospective observational study.Methodsa study of the sensitivity and specificity of TSDs has been carried out using the Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test for the diagnosis of SARS-CoV-2 as the Gold Standard value. Logistic regressions adjusted for age and sex were performed to identify additional symptoms that might be associated with COVID-19.Resultsthe results are based on 226 healthcare workers with clinical symptoms suggestive of COVID-19, 116 with positive PCR and 111 with negative PCR. TSDs had an OR of 12.43 (CI 0.95 6.33–26.19), sensitivity 60.34% and specificity 89.09%. In the logistic regression model, the association of TSD, fever or low-grade fever, shivering, dyspnoea, arthralgia and myalgia obtained an area under the curve of 85.7% (CI 0.95: 80.7 % - 90.7 %), sensitivity 82.8 %, specificity 80% and positive predictive values 81.4% and negative 81.5%.ConclusionsTSDs are a strong predictor of COVID-19. The association of TSD, fever, low-grade fever or shivering, dyspnoea, arthralgia and myalgia correctly predicts 85.7% of the results of the COVID-19 test.
Headache is a common complaint during pregnancy and the puerperium. The differentiation between a benign headache and a headache that has an underlying more endangering cause, such as an intracranial tumor, can be difficult and often requires diagnostic procedures and brain imaging techniques. We report the case of an 18-year-old female patient who developed clinical symptoms—persistent headache followed by neurological deficit—in the last part of her pregnancy. A medulloblastoma (MB) was diagnosed and treated after delivery. We review 11 other cases of MB in pregnancy reported in the literature. The most common clinical manifestation at diagnosis was headache followed by neurological deficits. We discuss the association of brain tumor growth with physiological changes during pregnancy. We conclude that clinical features of intracranial tumors can be misinterpreted as pregnancy-related symptoms and should not be dismissed.
Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) is a highly prevalent yet poorly understood chronic mental disorder. Previous studies have associated GAD with excessive activation of the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC). This study aimed to investigate the effect of low-frequency repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (repetitive TMS, rTMS) targeting the right DLPFC on clinical symptoms and TMS-evoked time-varying brain network connectivity in patients with GAD. Eleven patients with GAD received 1 Hz rTMS treatment targeting the right DLPFC for 10 days. The severity of the clinical symptoms was evaluated using the Hamilton Anxiety Scale (HAMA) and the Hamilton Depression Scale (HAMD) at baseline, right after treatment, and at the one-month follow-up. Co-registration of single-pulse TMS (targeting the right DLPFC) and electroencephalography (TMS-EEG) was performed pre- and post-treatment in these patients and 11 healthy controls. Time-varying brain network connectivity was analyzed using the adaptive directed transfer function. The scores of HAMA and HAMD significantly decreased after low-frequency rTMS treatment, and these improvements in ratings remained at the one-month follow-up. Analyses of the time-varying EEG network in the healthy controls showed a continuous weakened connection information outflow in the left frontal and mid-temporal regions. Compared with the healthy controls, the patients with GAD showed weakened connection information outflow in the left frontal pole and the posterior temporal pole at baseline. After 10-day rTMS treatment, the network patterns showed weakened connection information outflow in the left frontal and temporal regions. The time-varying EEG network changes induced by TMS perturbation targeting right DLPFC in patients with GAD were characterized by insufficient information outflow in the left frontal and temporal regions. Low-frequency rTMS targeting the right DLPFC reversed these abnormalities and improved the clinical symptoms of GAD.
Background. Most of heart defects in children do not show typical clinical symptoms. Ten percent of the cases are late detected. Echocardiography is an examination with high sensitivity and specificity in detecting heart defects in children, but it cannot be performed by all health workers, expensive and not always available in hospitals. Auscultation is an important part of a physical examination that inexpensive, easy examination, and becomes a competency of all doctors. The aim of this study to determine the accuracy of the screening method by listening to murmurs on heart auscultation by various levels of physician competence.
Methods. This is a diagnostic test of 250 elementary school children held in the pediatric ward of dr. Mohammad Hoesin Palembang from September to November 2019. The auscultation examination was performed by three pediatrics resident from three stages (i.e. junior, middle and senior), followed by echocardiography examinations by a pediatric cardiologist.
Results. The highest sensitivity of auscultation was found in senior resident, 42.4%, while the lowest was found in junior resident, 12.1%. The results of the kappa analysis of the cardiac auscultation examination on the three examiners showed a poor level of agreement on junior stage compared to senior resident (k = 0.189; CI = 0.033-0.346) and the level of agreement was sufficient in junior stage compared to middle stage resident (k = 0.297; CI = 0.134 -0.461) and middle stage compared to senior resident (k = 0.301; CI = 0.147-0.456).
Conclusion. Experience and length of learning will affect the accuracy of the auscultation examination in detecting heart defects in children.