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J. Clin. Med., Volume 6, Issue 10 (October 2017)

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Research

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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle History and Outcome of Febrile Neutropenia Outside the Oncology Setting: A Retrospective Study of 76 Cases Related to Non-Chemotherapy Drugs
J. Clin. Med. 2017, 6(10), 92; doi:10.3390/jcm6100092
Received: 11 August 2017 / Revised: 14 September 2017 / Accepted: 16 September 2017 / Published: 26 September 2017
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Abstract
Background: Despite major advances in its prevention and treatment, febrile neutropenia remains a most concerning complication of cancer chemotherapy. Outside the oncology setting, however, only few data are currently available on febrile neutropenia related to non-chemotherapy drugs. We report here data on 76
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Background: Despite major advances in its prevention and treatment, febrile neutropenia remains a most concerning complication of cancer chemotherapy. Outside the oncology setting, however, only few data are currently available on febrile neutropenia related to non-chemotherapy drugs. We report here data on 76 patients with febrile neutropenia related to non-chemotherapy drugs, followed up in a referral center within a university hospital. Patients and methods: Data from 76 patients with idiosyncratic drug-induced febrile neutropenia were retrospectively reviewed. All cases were extracted from a cohort study on agranulocytosis conducted at the Strasbourg University Hospital (Strasbourg, France). Results: Mean patient age was 52.2 years old (range: 18–93) and gender ratio (F/M) 1.6, with several comorbidities present in 86.8% of patients. The most common causative drugs were: antibiotics (37.4%), antithyroid drugs (17.2%), neuroleptic and anti-epileptic agents (13.1%), non-steroidal anti-inflammatory agents and analgesics (8%), and platelet aggregation inhibitors (8%). Main clinical presentations upon hospitalization included isolated fever (30%), sore throat, acute tonsillitis and sinusitis (18.4%), documented pneumonia (18.4%), septicemia (14.5%), and septic shock (6.6%). Mean neutrophil count at nadir was 0.13 × 10(9)/L (range: 0–0.48). While in hospital, 22 patients (28.9%) worsened clinically and required intensive care unit placement. All patients were promptly treated with broad-spectrum antibiotics, and 45 (59.2%) with hematopoietic growth factors. Mean duration of hematological recovery (neutrophil count ≥1.5 × 10(9)/L) was 7.5 days (range: 2–21), which was reduced to 0.7 days (range: 2–16) (p = 0.089) with hematopoietic growth factors. Outcome was favorable in 89.5% of patients, whereas eight died. Conclusions: Like in oncology and myelosuppressive chemotherapy settings, idiosyncratic febrile neutropenia is typically serious, about 40% of patients exhibiting severe pneumonia, septicemia, and septic shock, with a mortality rate of 10%. Like in febrile, chemotherapy-related neutropenia, modern and timely management (immediate broad spectrum antibiotherapy, hematopoietic growth factors) may reduce infection-related mortality. All practitioners should be aware of this potential side-effect that may even occur in the event of “daily medication” exposure. Full article
Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Cancer and the LGBTQ Population: Quantitative and Qualitative Results from an Oncology Providers’ Survey on Knowledge, Attitudes, and Practice Behaviors
J. Clin. Med. 2017, 6(10), 93; doi:10.3390/jcm6100093
Received: 15 August 2017 / Revised: 5 September 2017 / Accepted: 25 September 2017 / Published: 7 October 2017
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Abstract
Background: Despite growing social acceptance, the LGBTQ population continues to face barriers to healthcare including fear of stigmatization by healthcare providers, and providers’ lack of knowledge about LGBTQ-specific health issues. This analysis focuses on the assessment of quantitative and qualitative responses from a
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Background: Despite growing social acceptance, the LGBTQ population continues to face barriers to healthcare including fear of stigmatization by healthcare providers, and providers’ lack of knowledge about LGBTQ-specific health issues. This analysis focuses on the assessment of quantitative and qualitative responses from a subset of providers who identified as specialists that treat one or more of the seven cancers that may be disproportionate in LGBTQ patients. Methods: A 32-item web-based survey was emailed to 388 oncology providers at a single institution. The survey assessed: demographics, knowledge, attitudes, and practice behaviors. Results: Oncology providers specializing in seven cancer types had poor knowledge of LGBTQ-specific health needs, with fewer than half of the surveyed providers (49.5%) correctly answering knowledge questions. Most providers had overall positive attitudes toward LGBTQ patients, with 91.7% agreeing they would be comfortable treating this population, and would support education and/or training on LGBTQ-related cancer health issues. Conclusion: Results suggest that despite generally positive attitudes toward the LGBTQ population, oncology providers who treat cancer types most prevalent among the population, lack knowledge of their unique health issues. Knowledge and practice behaviors may improve with enhanced education and training on this population’s specific needs. Full article
Open AccessArticle Diagnostic Accuracy of FebriDx: A Rapid Test to Detect Immune Responses to Viral and Bacterial Upper Respiratory Infections
J. Clin. Med. 2017, 6(10), 94; doi:10.3390/jcm6100094
Received: 14 August 2017 / Revised: 21 September 2017 / Accepted: 21 September 2017 / Published: 7 October 2017
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Abstract
C-reactive protein (CRP) and myxovirus resistance protein A (MxA) are associated with bacterial and viral infections, respectively. We conducted a prospective, multicenter, cross-sectional study of adults and children with febrile upper respiratory tract infections (URIs) to evaluate the diagnostic accuracy of a rapid
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C-reactive protein (CRP) and myxovirus resistance protein A (MxA) are associated with bacterial and viral infections, respectively. We conducted a prospective, multicenter, cross-sectional study of adults and children with febrile upper respiratory tract infections (URIs) to evaluate the diagnostic accuracy of a rapid CRP/MxA immunoassay to identify clinically significant bacterial infection with host response and acute pathogenic viral infection. The reference standard for classifying URI etiology was an algorithm that included throat bacterial culture, upper respiratory PCR for viral and atypical pathogens, procalcitonin, white blood cell count, and bandemia. The algorithm also allowed for physician override. Among 205 patients, 25 (12.2%) were classified as bacterial, 53 (25.9%) as viral, and 127 (62.0%) negative by the reference standard. For bacterial detection, agreement between FebriDx and the reference standard was 91.7%, with FebriDx having a sensitivity of 80% (95% CI: 59–93%), specificity of 93% (89–97%), positive predictive value (PPV) of 63% (45–79%), and a negative predictive value (NPV) of 97% (94–99%). For viral detection, agreement was 84%, with a sensitivity of 87% (75–95%), specificity of 83% (76–89%), PPV of 64% (63–75%), and NPV of 95% (90–98%). FebriDx may help to identify clinically significant immune responses associated with bacterial and viral URIs that are more likely to require clinical management or therapeutic intervention, and has potential to assist with antibiotic stewardship. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Myocardial Expression of Macrophage Migration Inhibitory Factor in Patients with Heart Failure
J. Clin. Med. 2017, 6(10), 95; doi:10.3390/jcm6100095
Received: 1 August 2017 / Revised: 26 September 2017 / Accepted: 10 October 2017 / Published: 13 October 2017
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Abstract
Macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF) is a pleiotropic inflammatory protein and contributes to several different inflammatory and ischemic/hypoxic diseases. MIF was shown to be cardioprotective in experimental myocardial ischemia/reperfusion injury and its expression is regulated by the transcription factor hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF)-1α. We
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Macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF) is a pleiotropic inflammatory protein and contributes to several different inflammatory and ischemic/hypoxic diseases. MIF was shown to be cardioprotective in experimental myocardial ischemia/reperfusion injury and its expression is regulated by the transcription factor hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF)-1α. We here report on MIF expression in the failing human heart and assess myocardial MIF in different types of cardiomyopathy. Myocardial tissue samples from n = 30 patients were analyzed by quantitative Real-Time PCR. MIF and HIF-1α mRNA expression was analyzed in myocardial samples from patients with ischemic (ICM) and non-ischemic cardiomyopathy (NICM) and from patients after heart transplantation (HTX). MIF expression was elevated in myocardial samples from patients with ICM compared to NICM. Transplanted hearts showed lower MIF levels compared to hearts from patients with ICM. Expression of HIF-1α was analyzed and was shown to be significantly increased in ICM patients compared to patients with NICM. MIF and HIF-1α mRNA is expressed in the human heart. MIF and HIF-1α expression depends on the underlying type of cardiomyopathy. Patients with ICM show increased myocardial MIF and HIF-1α expression. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Integrating Autism Care through a School-Based Intervention Model: A Pilot Study
J. Clin. Med. 2017, 6(10), 97; doi:10.3390/jcm6100097
Received: 5 September 2017 / Revised: 13 October 2017 / Accepted: 16 October 2017 / Published: 19 October 2017
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Abstract
The purpose of this pilot study is to determine the feasibility of monitoring the progress of children with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) both in school and at home to promote a school-based integrated care model between parents, teachers, and medical providers. This
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The purpose of this pilot study is to determine the feasibility of monitoring the progress of children with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) both in school and at home to promote a school-based integrated care model between parents, teachers, and medical providers. This is a prospective cohort study. To monitor progress, outcome measures were administered via an online platform developed for caregivers and teachers of children (n = 30) attending a school specializing in neurodevelopmental disorders and using an integrated medical and education program. Longitudinal analysis showed improvements in a novel scale, the Teacher Autism Progress Scale (TAPS), which was designed to measure key autism-related gains in a school environment (2.1-point improvement, p = 0.004, ES = 0.324). The TAPS showed a strong and statistically significant correlation, with improvement in aberrant behavior (r = −0.50; p = 0.008) and social responsiveness (r = −0.70; p < 0.001). The results also showed non-statistically significant improvements in aberrant behavior, social responsiveness, and quality of life over time at both school and home. To assess feasibility of ongoing progress measurement, we assessed missing data, which showed caregivers were more likely to miss surveys during summer. Results demonstrate the value and feasibility of online, longitudinal data collection in school to assist with individualized education planning and collaborative care for children with ASD. Lessons learned in this pilot will support school outcomes researchers in developing more efficacious, collaborative treatment plans between clinicians, caregivers, and teachers. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Production and Use of Hymenolepis diminuta Cysticercoids as Anti-Inflammatory Therapeutics
J. Clin. Med. 2017, 6(10), 98; doi:10.3390/jcm6100098
Received: 4 September 2017 / Revised: 4 October 2017 / Accepted: 17 October 2017 / Published: 24 October 2017
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Abstract
Helminthic therapy has shown considerable promise as a means of alleviating some inflammatory diseases that have proven resistant to pharmaceutical intervention. However, research in the field has been limited by a lack of availability to clinician scientists of a helminth that is relatively
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Helminthic therapy has shown considerable promise as a means of alleviating some inflammatory diseases that have proven resistant to pharmaceutical intervention. However, research in the field has been limited by a lack of availability to clinician scientists of a helminth that is relatively benign, non-communicable, affordable, and effectively treats disease. Previous socio-medical studies have found that some individuals self-treating with helminths to alleviate various diseases are using the rat tapeworm (cysticercoid developmental stage of Hymenolepis diminuta; HDC). In this study, we describe the production and use of HDCs in a manner that is based on reports from individuals self-treating with helminths, individuals producing helminths for self-treatment, and physicians monitoring patients that are self-treating. The helminth may fit the criteria needed by clinical scientists for clinical trials, and the methodology is apparently feasible for any medical center to reproduce. It is hoped that future clinical trials using this organism may shed light on the potential for helminthic therapy to alleviate inflammatory diseases. Further, it is hoped that studies with HDCs may provide a stepping stone toward population-wide restoration of the biota of the human body, potentially reversing the inflammatory consequences of biota depletion that currently affect Western society. Full article
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Review

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Open AccessReview Comparison of Minimal Residual Disease Detection by Multiparameter Flow Cytometry, ASO-qPCR, Droplet Digital PCR, and Deep Sequencing in Patients with Multiple Myeloma Who Underwent Autologous Stem Cell Transplantation
J. Clin. Med. 2017, 6(10), 91; doi:10.3390/jcm6100091
Received: 30 April 2017 / Revised: 17 September 2017 / Accepted: 20 September 2017 / Published: 25 September 2017
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Abstract
Multiple myeloma (MM) is a hematological malignancy with a poor prognosis, characterized by clonal proliferation of plasma cells in the bone marrow (BM). Relapse due to undetected minimal residual disease (MRD) is the leading cause of death among patients with MM. This review
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Multiple myeloma (MM) is a hematological malignancy with a poor prognosis, characterized by clonal proliferation of plasma cells in the bone marrow (BM). Relapse due to undetected minimal residual disease (MRD) is the leading cause of death among patients with MM. This review summarizes the methods and prognostic value of MRD assessment in BM and autografts from MM patients who underwent autologous stem cell transplantation (ASCT) by multiparameter flow cytometry (MFC), allele-specific oligonucleotide real-time quantitative PCR (ASO-qPCR), droplet digital PCR (ddPCR), and next-generation sequencing (NGS)-based detection methods. MRD assessment using NGS-based approaches has clear prognostic value and better sensitivity compared to traditional methods. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Role of Minimal Residual Disease Assessment in Hematological Cancers)
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Other

Jump to: Research, Review

Open AccessCase Report X-pert MTB/RIF® Diagnosis of Twin Infants with Tuberculosis in Da Nang, Viet Nam
J. Clin. Med. 2017, 6(10), 96; doi:10.3390/jcm6100096
Received: 16 August 2017 / Revised: 6 October 2017 / Accepted: 11 October 2017 / Published: 17 October 2017
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Abstract
4-month-old twins were diagnosed with X-pert MTB/RIF® confirmed tuberculosis (TB)[...] Full article
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