OBJECTIVE: This prospective study was conducted to evaluate the value of sonographic B-lines (previously called "comet tail artifacts''), which are long, vertical, well-defined, hyperechoic, dynamic lines originating from the pleural line in assessment of interstitial lung diseases (ILD) and compare them with the findings of chest high-resolution computed tomography (HRCT) and pulmonary function tests (PFTs). MATERIALS AND METHODS: Sixty-one patients with ILD underwent transthoracic lung ultrasound for assessment of the presence of B-lines and the distance between them. These findings were compared with that of chest HRCT (ground glass, reticular, nodular or honey combing) and PFT as forced vital capacity (FVC), total lung capacity (TLC), diffusion capacity for carbon monoxide (DLCO) and partial arterial oxygen pressure (PaO2). RESULTS: All patients had diffuse bilateral B-lines. The distance between each of the two adjacent B lines correlated with the severity of the disease on chest HRCT where B3 (the distance was 3 mm) correlated with ground glass opacity and B7 (the distance was 7 mm) correlated with extensive fibrosis and honey combing. Also, the distance between B-lines inversely correlated with FVC (r = -0.848, P < 0.001), TLC (r = -0.664, P < 0.001), DLCO (r = -0.817, P < 0.001) and PaO2 (r = -0.902, P < 0.001). CONCLUSION: B-lines that are lung Ultrasound signs seem to be useful in the assessment of ILD.
Introduction: The differential diagnosis of sarcoidosis creates a challange due to tuberculosis also having lung and lymph node involvement. Because both diseases show granulomatous inflammation, it may not be possible to distinguish tuberculosis and sarcoidosis in pathological specimens. As a result of the complexity in the differential diagnosis of sarcoidosis and tuberculosis, new markers for differentiation are being investigated. Objective: The aim of our study is to investigate the value of neutrophil/lymphocyte ratio (NLR) as a possible marker in differentiating sarcoidosis and tuberculosis. Materials and Methods: In our study, 51 acid-fast bacilli (AFB) positive and/or culture-positive patients with pulmonary tuberculosis, 40 patients with biopsy-proven sarcoidosis and a control group consisting of 43 patients were included. In our study, information was collected retrospectively based on hospital records. Results: Leukocyte and neutrophil counts, NLR, erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR), C-reactive protein (CRP) were significantly higher, and albumin was significantly lower in the tuberculosis group compared with sarcoidosis (for all parameters P < 0.001). The most appropriate cut-off value of NLR to distinguish tuberculosis from sarcoidosis was determined as 2.55. For this cut-off value of NLR there was 79% sensitivity, 69% specificity, 73% positive predictive value (PPV), 75% negative predictive value (NPV), and area under the curve (AUC) was 0.788. For differentiation of sarcoidosis from tuberculosis, accuracy of the NLR test according to this cut-off value was found as 76%. Conclusion: NLR as a little known marker in respiratory medicine was found to be supportive in differentiation of tuberculosis and sarcoidosis. More studies on this issue is needed.
Asthma is a prevalent chronic disease of the respiratory system and acute asthma exacerbations are among the most common causes of presentation to the emergency department (ED) and admission to hospital particularly in children. Bronchial airways inflammation is the most prominent pathological feature of asthma. Inhaled corticosteroids (ICS), through their anti-inflammatory effects have been the mainstay of treatment of asthma for many years. Systemic and ICS are also used in the treatment of acute asthma exacerbations. Several international asthma management guidelines recommend the use of systemic corticosteroids in the management of moderate to severe acute asthma early upon presentation to the ED. On the other hand, ICS use in the management acute asthma has been studied in different contexts with encouraging results in some and negative in others. This review sheds some light on the role of systemic and ICS in the management of acute asthma and discusses the current evidence behind their different ways of application particularly in relation to new developments in the field.
The Saudi Thoracic Society (STS) launched the Saudi Initiative for Chronic Airway Diseases (SICAD) to develop a guideline for the diagnosis and management of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). This guideline is primarily aimed for internists and general practitioners. Though there is scanty epidemiological data related to COPD, the SICAD panel believes that COPD prevalence is increasing in Saudi Arabia due to increasing prevalence of tobacco smoking among men and women. To overcome the issue of underutilization of spirometry for diagnosing COPD, handheld spirometry is recommended to screen individuals at risk for COPD. A unique feature about this guideline is the simplified practical approach to classify COPD into three classes based on the symptoms as per COPD Assessment Test (CAT) and the risk of exacerbations and hospitalization. Those patients with low risk of exacerbation (= 10). High-risk COPD patients, as manifested with >= 2 exacerbation or hospitalization in the past year irrespective of the baseline symptoms, are classified as Class III. Class I and II patients require bronchodilators for symptom relief, while Class III patients are recommended to use medications that reduce the risks of exacerbations. The guideline recommends screening for co-morbidities and suggests a comprehensive management approach including pulmonary rehabilitation for those with a CAT score >= 10. The article also discusses the diagnosis and management of acute exacerbations in COPD.
INTRODUCTION: Community acquired pneumonia (CAP) may present as life-threatening infection with uncertain progression and outcome of treatment. Primary aim of the trial was determination of the cut-off value of serum interleukin-6 (IL-6) and procalcitonin (PCT) above which, 30-day mortality in hospitalized patients with CAP, could be predicted with high sensitivity and specificity. We investigated correlation between serum levels of IL-6 and PCT at admission and available scoring systems of CAP (pneumonia severity index-PSI, modified early warning score-MEWS and (Confusion, Urea nitrogen, respiratory rate, Blood pressure, >= 65 years of age-CURB65). METHODS: This was prospective, non-randomized trial which included 101 patients with diagnosed CAP. PSI, MEWS and CURB65 were assessed on first day of hospitalization. IL-6 and PCT were also sampled on the first day of hospitalization. RESULTS: Based on ROC curve analysis (AUC +/- SE = 0.934 +/- 0.035; 95% CI(0.864-1.0); P = 0.000) hospitalized CAP patients with elevated IL-6 level have 93.4% higher risk level for lethal outcome. Cut-off value of 20.2 pg/ml IL-6 shows sensitivity of 84% and specificity of 87% in mortality prediction. ROC curve analysis confirmed significant role of procalcitonin as a mortality predictor in CAP patients (AUC +/- SE = 0.667 +/- 0.062; 95% CI(0.546-0.789); P = 0.012). Patients with elevated PCT level have 66.7% higher risk level for lethal outcome. As a predictor of mortality at the cut-off value of 2.56 ng/ml PCT shows sensitivity of 76% and specificity of 61.8%. CONCLUSIONS: Both IL-6 and PCI are significant for prediction of 30-day mortality in hospitalized patients with CAP. Serum levels of IL6 correlate with major CAP scoring systems.
BACKGROUND: Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is an important cause of morbidity in the elderly population. Limited data are available regarding the healthcare utilization and predisposing conditions related to OSA in the elderly. Our aim was to evaluate the healthcare utilization and the conditions associated with new and chronic diagnosis of OSA in a large cohort of elderly patients in the Veterans Health Administration (VHA). MATERIALS AND METHODS: This retrospective cohort study used inpatient and outpatient VHA data to identify the individuals diagnosed with OSA using ICD-9 codes during the fiscal years 2003-2005. Primary outcomes were emergency department (ED) visits and hospitalizations. Multivariable logistic regression analysis was performed to identify the demographic and clinical characteristics associated with new and chronic diagnosis of OSA. RESULTS: Of 1,867,876 elderly veterans having 2 years of care, 82,178 (4.4%) were diagnosed with OSA. Individuals with OSA were younger and more likely to have chronic diseases than those without OSA. Individuals with chronic OSA were more likely to have diagnoses of congestive heart failure (CHF), pulmonary circulation disorders, COPD, and obesity and less likely to have diagnoses of hypertension, osteoarthritis, and stroke than individuals with newly diagnosed OSA. The proportion of patients with new OSA diagnosis who required at least one ED visit was higher than the proportion of chronic OSA and no OSA patients (37%, 32%, and 15%, respectively; P-value <0.05). The proportion of new OSA patients who required at least one hospitalization was also higher than the proportion of chronic OSA and no OSA patients (24%, 17%, and 7%, respectively; P-value <0.05). CONCLUSION: Patients with OSA had a higher incidence of healthcare utilization compared to patients without OSA. New OSA patients had a higher rate of healthcare utilization in the year of diagnosis compared to chronic patients and patients without OSA. Early OSA recognition may reduce healthcare utilization in these patients.
Background: Several studies showed that the implementation of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) ventilator bundle alone or with other preventive measures are associated with reducing Ventilator-Associated Pneumonia (VAP) rates. However, the association with ventilator utilization was rarely examined and the findings were conflicting. The objectives were to validate the bundle association with VAP rate in a traditionally high VAP environment and to examine its association with ventilator utilization. Materials and Methods: The study was conducted at the adult medical-surgical intensive care unit (ICU) at King Abdulaziz Medical City, Saudi Arabia, between 2010 and 2013. VAP data were collected by a prospective targeted surveillance as per Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)/National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN) methodology while bundle data were collected by a cross-sectional design as per IHI methodology. Results: Ventilator bundle compliance significantly increased from 90% in 2010 to 97% in 2013 (P for trend < 0.001). On the other hand, VAP rate decreased from 3.6 (per 1000 ventilator days) in 2010 to 1.0 in 2013 (P for trend = 0.054) and ventilator utilization ratio decreased from 0.73 in 2010 to 0.59 in 2013 (P for trend < 0.001). There were negative significant correlations between the trends of ventilator bundle compliance and VAP rate (cross-correlation coefficients 0.63 to 0.07) and ventilator utilization (cross-correlation coefficients 0.18 to 0.63). Conclusion: More than 70% improvement of VAP rates and approximately 20% improvement of ventilator utilization were observed during IHI ventilator bundle implementation among adult critical patients in a tertiary care center in Saudi Arabia. Replicating the current finding in multicenter randomized trials is required before establishing any causal link.
Objective: The aim was to investigate the effects of two different ventilatory strategies: Pressure-controlled ventilation (PCV) versus volume-controlled ventilation (VCV) in elderly patients with poor pulmonary function during one-lung ventilation (OLV). Patients and Methods: The patients were enrolled into the study having poor pulmonary function (forced expiratory volume in 1 s < 1.5 L) and undergoing radical resection of pulmonary carcinoma requiring at least 2 h of OLV. Patients were respectively allocated to VCV group and PCV group. The intraoperative data, arterial, and mixed venous blood gases were obtained at baseline, 20, 40, 60, 80, 100 and 120 min after OLV and end of surgery. The postoperative data had been recorded and arterial gas measurements were performed at 6, 12 and 24 h after surgery in Intensive Care Unit. Results: Comparison of the VCV group and PCV group, PaO 2 and P(A-a)O 2 were higher and dead space to tidal volume was lower in the PCV group (P < 0.05) after the point of OLV 60, Ppeak was higher in the VCV group (P < 0.05). There were significant advantages in PCV groups with regard to the PaO 2 of three points in postoperation, the duration of postoperative ventilation duration, intensive care duration of stay and the days stay in hospital after surgery. Conclusions: The use of PCV compared with VCV during OLV in elderly patients with poor pulmonary function has significant advantages of intraoperative and postoperative oxygenation and it might be a factor, which can beneficial to postoperative recovery.
BACKGROUND: Core biopsies are valuable in obtaining sufficient tissue to ensure diagnosis of diseases in the thorax. OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the complication rate and the diagnostic yield in computer tomography (CT)-guided core biopsies performed in a county hospital in Sweden. METHODS: Medical journals, spirometry results, pathology reports and CT scans were reviewed in 463 consecutive cases, where a transthoracic core biopsy was performed between January 2005 and December 2010. Of these 380 (82%) were lung lesions, 48 (10%) were mediastinal lesions and 35 (8%) were pleural lesions. RESULTS: All patients underwent a chest X-ray 4 hours post-biopsy and pneumothorax was seen in 156/463 (34%) patients: 137 after lung biopsy and 17 after mediastinal biopsy. Chest tube insertion was required for 27 (17%) of these patients (6% of all core biopsies). Small intraparenchymal hemorrhages and hemoptysis were observed with subjective difficulty in one case. The diagnostic yield for the 463 patients was 212 (46%) cases of lung cancer, 188 (41%) benign lesions and 39 (8%) pulmonary metastases. CONCLUSIONS: A transthoracic core biopsy ensures diagnosis with a low complication rate and is suitable as an outpatient procedure. An increased risk for pneumothorax was observed when the biopsied lesion was small or when emphysema was in the path of the biopsy needle. Reduced lung function pre-biopsy or emphysema in the path of the biopsy needle increased the need for chest tube treatment of pneumothorax. A CT-guided core biopsy is safe and applicable in a county hospital.
Aim: The purpose of this study was to assess the contribution of (18) F-fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) Positron Emission Tomography (PET)/Computed Tomography (CT) in detection and staging of pulmonary carcinoid tumors. Methods: A total of 22 patients with pulmonary carcinoid tumors (14 typical, 8 atypical) were reviewed in this retrospective study. PET/CT images of all patients were evaluated for primary tumor as well as metastatic regional lymph nodes, bone and other distant metastases. PET/CT positivity of primary tumors was determined by visual interpretation. Tumor size, SUVmax and Hounsfield Unit (HU) values of the tumors were used to test for differences between tumor groups (typical carcinoids and atypical carcinoids). Results: SUVmax of carcinoids ranged from 1.24 to 11.1 (mean, 5.0; median, 2.67). The mean largest diameter of primary tumors was 2.7 1.3 cm, ranging from 1 to 5.5 cm. The overall sensitivity of FDG PET/CT for detection of pulmonary carcinoid tumors was 81.8%. Tumor size, SUVmax and Hounsfield Unit (HU) values of the atypical carcinoids were higher than those for typical carcinoids. However, the results were not statistically meaningful (P > 0.05). The sensitivity and specificity of FDG PET/CT in the detection of mediastinal and hilar lymph nodes metastases were 25% and 83% respectively. One patient had bone metastasis. Conclusion: Although FDG PET/CT can be a useful tool for the detection of pulmonary carcinoid tumors and distant metastasis, it cannot discriminate typical carcinoids from atypical ones and absence of an FDG avid lesion cannot exclude pulmonary carcinoid tumors. Moreover, PET/CT is not a reliable tool in the staging of mediastinal and hilar lymph nodes especially for those patients with typical carcinoids.
The Saudi Association for Pulmonary Hypertension (previously called Saudi Advisory Group for Pulmonary Hypertension) has published the first Saudi Guidelines on Diagnosis and Treatment of Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension back in 2008. () That guideline was very detailed and extensive and reviewed most aspects of pulmonary hypertension (PH). One of the disadvantages of such detailed guidelines is the difficulty that some of the readers who just want to get a quick guidance or looking for a specific piece of information might face. All efforts were made to develop this guideline in an easy-to-read form, making it very handy and helpful to clinicians dealing with PH patients to select the best management strategies for the typical patient suffering from a specific condition. This Guideline was designed to provide recommendations for problems frequently encountered by practicing clinicians involved in management of PH. This publication targets mainly adult and pediatric PH-treating physicians, but can also be used by other physicians interested in PH.
OBJECTIVES: Patients with obesity hypoventilation syndrome (OHS) have significant morbidity and mortality. Early diagnosis and treatment is important and there are limited data on its prevalence and predictive factors. The objective of this observational study was to determine the frequency and predictors of OHS in hospitalized patients at a tertiary health care institution. MATERIALS AND METHODS: All blood gas analyses of hospitalized adult (age over 18 years) patients were prospectively recruited from the biochemistry laboratory at a tertiary health care center between August 2009 and July 2010. Patients who had hypercapnia (PaCO2 >= 45 mmHg) while breathing room air were included and clinical and laboratory data were obtained from hospital records. A standard questionnaire was also filled by face-to-face interview with patients and/or relatives. RESULTS: A total of 9480 patients' arterial blood gases were evaluated and 330 patients (3.4%) who met the selection criteria were included in the analysis during the study period. Hypoventilation was associated with acute diseases in 64.2% and chronic diseases in 35.8% of the patients. Of the chronic hypoventilation patients, 24.4% had OHS. Univariate logistic regression analysis showed that, female gender, body mass index (BMI), smoking, PaO2, SaO(2) and a PaCO2/BMI 35 kg/m(2), SaO(2) < 91.4% and PaCO2/BMI < 1.5 were significantly related to OHS. A PaCO2/BMI < 1.5 was an independent variable strongly predictive of OHS (odds ratio: 36.9, 95% of the confidence interval: 2.75-492.95, P = 0.007). CONCLUSIONS: OHS is a common cause of chronic alveolar hypoventilation. A careful examination PaCO2/BMI ratio may prevent misdiagnoses among hypercapnic patients.
BACKGROUND: There is a wide geographic and temporal variability of bacterial resistance among microbial causes of ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP). The contribution of multi-drug resistant (MDR) pathogens to the VAP etiology in Saudi Arabia was never studied. We sought to examine the extent of multiple-drug resistance among common microbial causes of VAP. MATERIALS AND METHODS: We conducted a retrospective susceptibility study in the adult intensive care unit (ICU) of King Abdulaziz Medical City, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Susceptibility results of isolates from patients diagnosed with VAP between October 2004 and June 2009 were examined. The US National Healthcare Safety Network definition of MDR was adopted. RESULTS: A total of 248 isolates including 9 different pathogens were included. Acinetobacter spp. was highly (60-89%) resistant to all tested antimicrobials, including carbapenems (three- and four-class MDR prevalence were 86% and 69%, respectively). Pseudomonas aeruginosa was moderately (13-31%) resistant to all tested antimicrobials, including antipseudomonal penicillins (three-and four-class MDR prevalence were 13% and 10%, respectively). With an exception of ampicillin (fully resistant), Klebsiella spp. had low (0-13%) resistance to other tested antimicrobials with no detected MDR. Staphylococcus aureus was fully susceptible to vancomycin with 42% resistance to oxacillin. There were significant increasing trends of MDR Acinetobacter spp. however not P. aeruginosa during the study. Resistant pathogens were associated with worse profile of ICU patients but not patients' outcomes. CONCLUSION: Acinetobacter in the current study was an increasingly resistant VAP-associated pathogen more than seen in many parts of the world. The current finding may impact local choice of initial empiric antibiotics.
BACKGROUND: The IL-4 receptor alpha subunit (IL-4R alpha), when associated with the common gamma chain receptor, or the IL-13R alpha 1 subunit, transduces signals to STAT6 in response to IL-4 and IL-13 stimulations. This results in a number of cell-specific responses including Th2 differentiation, lymphocyte proliferation and IgE production. Given the prominent role of IL-4R alpha in allergic disorders, several single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) have been found associated with asthma and other atopic disorders, including rs1805010 (I75V) and rs1801275 (Q576R) SNPs; however, lack of significant association have also been reported for some ethnic groups. The objective of this study was to determine whether IL-4R alpha rs1805010 and rs1801275 polymorphisms are associated with asthma in patients from Saudi Arabia. MATERIALS AND METHODS: One hundred and ninety severe asthmatic patients (11-70 years old) and 194 healthy subjects of equivalent age range were recruited for blood donation. DNA was purified and genotyping for rs1801275 and rs1805010 polymorphisms in the IL-4R alpha gene was performed by PCR amplification, followed by cycle sequencing of the purified PCR fragments using BigDye chain terminator and capillary electrophoresis. RESULTS: Pearson's Chi-square tests showed that the minor alleles, G, for both rs1805010 and rs1801275 SNPs, were significantly more frequent in asthmatics than in the healthy group (Yates' P < 0.05); conversely, the major alleles, A, were significantly more frequent in healthy than in asthmatics (P < 0.05). Concerning association analysis, odds for A/G-G/G genotypes were significantly higher to be associated with asthma predisposition (rs1801275: OR = 2.12; 95% CI = 1.39-3.22; P < 0.001*; rs1805010: OR = 1.6; 95% CI = 1.01-2.53; P < 0.05*; dominant model). Analysis of gender-genotype interactions, with genders nested within A/G-G/G, indicated higher odds for females than males of significant association with asthma (rs1801275: OR = 5.19, 95% CI = 2.09-12.94*; rs1805010: OR = 3.73, 95% CI = 2.06-6.74*). Rs1805010 and rs1801275 were in linkage disequilibrium (D' = 0.27; P < 0.0004*), with G-G haplotype being more frequent in asthmatics than in healthy subjects (OR = 2.43, 95% CI = 1.59-3.71*). CONCLUSIONS: The risk alleles, G, of IL-4R alpha rs1805010 and rs1801275 SNPs and corresponding A/G-G/G genotypes were significantly associated with asthma predisposition in asthmatics from Saudi Arabia.
Background: Allergic Broncho Pulmonary Aspergillosis (ABPA) is a rare disease characterized by an allergic inflammatory response to the colonization by aspergillus or other fungi in the airways. The aim was to study the clinical, radiological, and serological characteristics of patients of ABPA. Materials and Methods: A prospective observational study of patients with breathlessness, chronic cough, blood eosinophilia, and infiltrates on chest X-ray were evaluated with serologic and allergic skin fungal tests using 15 common fungal antigens. Total of 24 patients were diagnosed as ABPA. Results: Total 24 patients, 15 males (62%), 9 females (38%). Age range: 14-70 years, mean 49.13, standard deviation (SD) 14.12. Central bronchiectasis - sixteen patients, bronchocoele - one patient, consolidation - five patients, collapse with mucous plugging with areas of consolidation - three patients, one patient had bronchiectasis, consolidation with hemorrhagic pleural effusion. Fifty-eight percent of patients had received anti-tuberculosis medications prior to diagnosis. Serum total IgE varied from 340 to 18100 IU/mL. Two patients had IgE levels below 1,000 IU/mL. The mean decrease in Serum total IgE levels at the end of 1 month was 26.1% (range: 0.7-71.9%) and at the end of 2 months was 58.9% (range: 11.11-93.26%) (P value of 0.004). Two patients had skin sensitivity to fungal antigens other than aspergillus species. Conclusion: ABPA is a disease with varied clinical, radiological, and serological patterns. Serum IgE monitoring may be done at the end of 2 and 6 months. Further studies are required to simplify the diagnosis and treatment algorithms in resource-limited countries.
Congenital heart disease (CHD) with intracardiac/extracardiac shunts is an important etiology of pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH). The majority of children with congenital cardiac shunts do not develop advanced pulmonary vasculopathy, as surgical repair of the anomalies is now performed early in life. However, if not repaired early, some defects will inevitably lead to pulmonary vascular disease (truncus arteriosus, transposition of the great arteries associated with a ventricular septal defect (VSD), atrioventricular septal defects remarkably in Down syndrome, large, nonrestrictive VSDs, patent ductus arteriosus and related anomalies). The majority of patients are now assigned to surgery based on noninvasive evaluation only. PAH becomes a concern (requiring advanced diagnostic procedures) in about 2-10% of them. In adults with CHD, the prevalence of advanced pulmonary vasculopathy (Eisenmenger syndrome) is around 4-12%. () This article will discuss the diagnostic and management approach for PAH associated with CHD (PAH-CHD).
Aims: The main objective of this study is to describe patients clinical characteristics and physiological and hemodynamic parameters at the time of diagnosis in a pulmonary hypertension center in Saudi Arabia. Materials and Methods: This study reports the results from a single pulmonary hypertension specialized center in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, namely Prince Sultan Medical Military City/Cardiac Center (PSMMC CC). Both newly diagnosed (incidence) and referred (prevalence) cases of pulmonary arterial hypertension are included. All characteristics, including clinical, physiological, and hemodynamic parameters at the time of diagnosis are described. Results: A total of 107 patients were identified as having pulmonary arterial hypertension as diagnosed by right heart catheterization. The mean age at diagnosis was 36 ( 9) years, and there was a female preponderance of 62.6%. The mean duration between symptom onset and diagnosis was 27.8 ( 9.0) months. At the time of enrollment, 56.1% of patients were in functional class III and 16.8% were in functional class IV. Fifty five patients (51.4%) were diagnosed as idiopathic pulmonary arterial hypertension, 29 patients (27.1%) as congenital heart disease associated with pulmonary arterial hypertension, 16 patients (15.0%) as connective tissue diseases associated with pulmonary arterial hypertension, 4 patients (3.7%) as heritable pulmonary arterial hypertension, and 3 patients (2.8%) as portopulmonary hypertension. Conclusion: This data highlights the current situation of pulmonary arterial hypertension in Saudi Arabia. Our patients are much younger than patients described in other international registries but still detected as late in the course of the disease. A majority of patients displays severe functional and hemodynamic compromise.
Solitary Fibrous Tumor of the Pleura (SFTP) is an uncommon neoplasm which grows slowly. For some cases, surgery is warranted. However, for unresectable ones, the standard strategy has not been established yet. We presented a rare case of recurrent malignant intrathoracic solitary fibrous tumor. It was impossible to resect the tumor. Radiotherapy alone achieved a significant improvement effect.
RATIONALE: Near-fatal asthma (NFA) has not been well studied in Saudi Arabia. We evaluated NFA risk factors in asthmatics admitted to a tertiary-care hospital and described NFA management and outcomes. MATERIALS AND METHODS: This was a retrospective study of NFA patients admitted to an ICU in Riyadh (2006-2010). NFA was defined as a severe asthma attack requiring intubation. To evaluate NFA risk factors, randomly selected patients admitted to the ward for asthma exacerbation were used as controls. Collected data included demographics, information on prior asthma control and various NFA treatments and outcomes. RESULTS: Thirty NFA cases were admitted to the ICU in the five-year period. Compared to controls (N = 120), NFA patients were younger (37.5 +/- 19.9 vs. 50.3 +/- 23.1 years, P = 0.004) and predominantly males (70.0% vs. 41.7%, P = 0.005) and used less inhaled steroids/long-acting beta 2-agonists combination (13.6% vs. 38.7% P = 0.024. Most (73.3%) NFA cases presented in the cool months (October-March). On multivariate analysis, age (odds ratio [OR] 0.96; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.92-0.99, P = 0.015) and the number of ED visits in the preceding year (OR, 1.25; 95% CI, 1.00-1.55) were associated with NFA. Rescue NFA management included ketamine (50%) and theophylline (19%) infusions. NFA outcomes included: neuromyopathy (23%), mechanical ventilation duration = 6.4 +/- 4.7 days, tracheostomy (13%) and mortality (0%). Neuromuscular blockade duration was associated with neuromyopathy (OR, 3.16 per one day increment; 95% CI, 1.27-7.83). CONCLUSIONS: In our study, NFA risk factors were younger age and higher number of ED visits. NFA had significant morbidity. Reducing neuromuscular blockade duration during ventilator management may decrease neuromyopathy risk.