The authors report the first results of a new 6-F symmetrically designed permanent nitinol inferior vena cava (IVC) filter, the Cordis TrapEase, evaluated in a multicenter prospective study with 6-months of follow-up.
A total of 65 patients (29 men, 36 women) who ranged in age from 37 to 96 years (mean age, 68 years) and who were at high risk of pulmonary embolism (PE) were enrolled in 12 centers in Europe and Canada. The study was approved by the institutional review boards at all centers. Study objectives were to evaluate filter effectiveness, filter stability, and caval occlusion. Indications for filter placement were deep vein thrombosis with recurrent thromboembolism and/or free-floating thrombus with contraindication to anticoagulation in 37 patients, and complications in achieving adequate anticoagulation in 28 patients. Follow-up included clinical examination, plain film, Doppler ultrasound, CT scan, and nuclear medicine.
The analysis of the data revealed a technical success of 95.4% (three filter-system related implantations not at the intended site, no events of filter tilting) and a clinical success of 100% at 6 months (no cases of symptomatic PE), the study primary endpoint. There were no cases (0%) of filter migration, insertion site thrombosis, filter fracture, or vessel wall perforation. During the study period, there were two cases of filter thrombosis: one case of early symptomatic thrombosis that was successfully treated in the hospital, and one case of nonsymptomatic filter thrombosis detected at 1-month follow-up, with spontaneous recanalization at 3 months. In the latter patient, some residual thrombus was still detected at 6 months. Of the study population of 65 patients, there were 23 deaths. These deaths were not related to the device or the implantation procedure but to the underlying disease process.
This study demonstrates the new nitinol permanent IVC filter to be a safe and an effective device, with a low overall complication rate, for use in patients with thromboembolic disease at high risk of PE.
In the last several years, West Nile virus (WNV) was proven to be present especially in the neighboring countries of Austria, such as Italy, Hungary, and the Czech Republic, as well as in eastern parts of Austria, where it was detected in migratory and domestic birds. In summer 2010, infections with WNV were reported from Romania and northern Greece with about 150 diseased and increasingly fatal cases. We tested the sera of 1,607 blood donors from North Tyrol (Austria) and South Tyrol (Italy) for antibodies against WNV by using IgG enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Initial results of the ELISA tests showed seroprevalence rates of 46.2% in North Tyrol and 0.5% in South Tyrol, which turned out to be false-positive cross-reactions with antibodies against tick-borne encephalitis virus (TBEV) by adjacent neutralization assays. These results indicate that seropositivity against WNV requires confirmation by neutralization assays, as cross-reactivity with TBEV is frequent and because, currently, WNV is not endemic in the study area.
Nasopharyngeal carcinoma is a disease with a remarkable racial and geographical distribution. In most parts of the world it is a rare condition and in only a handful of places does this low risk profile alter. These include the Southern Chinese, Eskimos and other Arctic natives, inhabitants of South-East Asia and also the populations of North Africa and Kuwait.
In the last two centuries, age at menarche has decreased in several European populations, whereas adult height has increased. It is unclear whether these trends have ceased in recent years or how age at menarche and height are related in individuals. In this study, the authors first investigated trends in age at menarche and adult height among 286,205 women from nine European countries by computing the mean age at menarche and height in 5-year birth cohorts, adjusted for differences in socioeconomic status. Second, the relation between age at menarche and height was estimated by linear regression models, adjusted for age at enrollment between 1992 and 1998 and socioeconomic status. Mean age at menarche decreased by 44 days per 5-year birth cohort (beta = -0.12, standard error = 0.002), varying from 18 days in the United Kingdom to 58 days in Spain and Germany. Women grew 0.29 cm taller per 5-year birth cohort (standard error = 0.007), varying from 0.42 cm in Italy to 0.98 cm in Denmark. Furthermore, women grew approximately 0.31 cm taller when menarche occurred 1 year later (range by country: 0.13-0.50 cm). Based on time trends, more recent birth cohorts have their menarche earlier and grow taller. However, women with earlier menarche reach a shorter adult height compared with women who have menarche at a later age.
Multiple sclerosis (MS) most commonly affects individuals of Northern European descent who live in countries at high latitude. The relative contributions of ancestry, country of birth and residence as determinants of MS risk have been studied in adult MS, but have not been explored in the pediatric MS population. In this study, we compare the demographics of pediatric- and adult-onset MS patients cared for in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, a multicultural region. The country of birth, residence during childhood, and ancestry were compared for 44 children and 573 adults. Our results demonstrate that although both the pediatric and adult cohorts were essentially born and raised in the same region of Ontario, Canada, children with MS were more likely to report Caribbean, Asian or Middle Eastern ancestry, and were less likely to have European heritage compared with individuals with adult-onset MS. The difference in ancestry between the pediatric and adult MS cohorts can be explained by two hypotheses: (1) individuals raised in a region of high MS prevalence, but whose ancestors originate from regions in which MS is rare, have an earlier age of MS onset, and (2) the place of residence during childhood, irrespective of ancestry, determines lifetime MS risk -- a fact that will be reflected in a change in the demographics of the adult MS cohort in our region as Canadian-raised children of recent immigrants reach the typical age of adult-onset MS.
A recent method of age-standardisation of relative survival ratios for cancer patients does not require calculation of age-specific relative survival ratios, as ratios of age-specific proportions between the standard population and study group at the beginning of the follow-up are used to substitute the original individual observations. This method, however, leads to direct age-standardisation with weights that are different for each patient group if the general population mortality patterns for the groups are different. This is the case in international comparisons, and in comparisons between genders and time periods. The magnitude of the bias caused by the differences in general population mortality is investigated for comparisons involving European countries and the USA. Patients in each country are assumed to have exactly the same age-specific relative survival ratios as those diagnosed in Finland in 1985-2004. An application of a properly functioning age-standardisation method should then give exactly equal age-standardised relative survival ratios for each country. However, the recent method shows substantial differences between countries, with highest relative survival for populations, where the general population mortality in the oldest ages is the highest. This source of error can thus be a serious limitation for the use of the method, and other methods that are available should then be employed.
AIM: This study examined the earliest stages in drug involvement, in terms of the relationship between alcohol and tobacco use, among adolescents from six European countries (Denmark, Finland, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and the United Kingdom). International, gender and age differences were studied. DESIGN, SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS: A large international sample of European adolescents (n = 10170, mean age = 13.3 years) was followed longitudinally. Data were gathered in the autumn terms of 1998 and 1999 by means of self-administered questionnaires. MEASURES: Adolescents' self-reports on smoking and alcohol behaviour were used. Both behaviours were classified into two categories, that of adolescents who had never used the substance and that of those who had used the substance at least once in their lives. Logistic regression was used to determine which substance was the best predictor of the subsequent use of the other substance. FINDINGS: Alcohol use and tobacco use were found to be associated with each other reciprocally. Results revealed that in Europe as a whole, tobacco use predicted subsequent alcohol use better than the converse. However, for Dutch girls, alcohol use predicted subsequent smoking behaviour better than the converse. CONCLUSION: The findings suggest that the development of alcohol and tobacco use patterns are closely related, but the order of progression is not universal and may reflect cultural factors.
Allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis (ABPA) is a disease resulting from a hypersensitivity response to Aspergillus fumigatus, although the pathogenesis of the disease is unknown and its prevalence in cystic fibrosis (CF) is still poorly defined. Data from the Epidemiologic Registry of Cystic Fibrosis (ERCF) on 12,447 CF patients gathered from 224 CF centres in nine European countries were analysed. The ERCF definition of ABPA diagnosis is a positive skin test and serum precipitins to A. fumigatus, together with serum immunoglobulin (Ig)E levels >1,000 U x mL(-1) and additional clinical or laboratory parameters. The overall prevalence of ABPA in the ERCF population was 7.8% (range: 2.1% in Sweden to 13.6% in Belgium). Prevalence was low or =20-12.9% in those with FEV1
Comment In: Eur Respir J. 2001 May;17(5):1052-311488309