Mononucleosis is generally considered a benign, self-limited disease. However, though uncommon, fatal complications are sometimes encountered. Deaths from liver failure, splenic rupture, respiratory obstruction, neurological complications, secondary infections and bleeding complications have been described. In the forensic setting, there are a few reports of sudden and unexplained deaths from splenic rupture and upper airway obstruction. We report here the first case of sudden and unexplained death from acute hepatitis in infectious mononucleosis presenting as a suspicious death.
During the past 15 years there has been an exponential increase in the number of prescriptions for lipid-lowering drugs. Uncertainties remain about the long-term impact of these medications on cancer, which is particularly bothersome given that the duration of these treatments may extend for several decades.
To explore the association between 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl coenzyme A (HMG-CoA) reductase inhibitors and cancer incidence.
Using the administrative health databases of the Régie de l'Assurance-Maladie du Québec we performed a nested case-control study. We selected a cohort of 6721 beneficiaries of the health care plan of Quebec who were free of cancer for at least 1 year at cohort entry, 65 years and older, and treated with lipid-modifying agents. Cohort members were selected between 1988 and 1994 and were followed up for a median period of 2.7 years. From the cohort, 542 cases of first malignant neoplasm were identified, and 5420 controls were randomly selected. Users of HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors were compared with users of bile acid-binding resins as to their risk of cancer. Specific cancer sites were also considered.
Users of HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors were found to be 28% less likely than users of bile acid-binding resins to be diagnosed as having any cancer (rate ratio, 0.72; 95% confidence interval, 0.57-0.92). All specific cancer sites under study were found to be not or inversely associated with the use of HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors.
The results of our study provide some degree of reassurance about the safety of HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors.
Comment In: Arch Intern Med. 2001 Jun 11;161(11):146011386902
We present the results of a questionnaire completed by 526 victims of accidents involving three- and four-wheeled all-terrain vehicles. All victims were treated at the emergency departments of 10 regional hospitals in Quebec. In 70% of cases, the vehicles overturned. Two thirds of victims were injured in accidents without collision, typically involving overturns on level ground or hills. We suggest accident reconstruction research as a means of identifying engineering solutions as one element in an injury control approach.
To determine the impact of a provincial choking prevention program (CPP) on the incidence of aerodigestive foreign body cases among children.
The CPP, including posters, pamphlets, an informative video, and annual participation in the Parents & Kids Fair, was launched throughout Quebec in October 1999. The incidence rates of aerodigestive foreign body cases prior to implementation (during 1997-1998) and subsequently (2000-2002) within the province and our tertiary care centre (Sainte-Justine Hospital) were compared by estimating incidence rate ratios (IRRs) and associated 95% confidence intervals (95% CIs).
No significant changes in the incidence of aerodigestive foreign body cases after program implementation were observed in our hospital (age-adjusted IRR 0.92, 95% CI 0.79-1.07). The provincial rates were higher after program implementation (age-adjusted IRR 1.15, 95% CI 1.05-1.25).
To influence choking prevention habits, modifications to the campaign are required. Strategies are discussed.
To determine the risk of injury associated with the new use of individual benzodiazepines and dosage regimens in the elderly.
Prospective database cohort study with 5 years of follow-up.
Two hundred fifty-three thousand two hundred forty-four persons aged 65 and older who were nonusers of benzodiazepines in the year before follow-up.
Population-based hospitalization and prescription and medical services claims databases were used to compare the risk of injury during periods of benzodiazepine use with those of nonuse. Periods of use were measured for 10 insured benzodiazepines by drug and dose as time-dependent covariates. Injury was defined as the first occurrence of a nonvertebral fracture, soft-tissue injury, or accident-related hospital admission. Patient age, sex, previous injury history, concomitant medication use, and comorbidity were measured as fixed and time-dependent confounders. Cox proportional hazards models were used to estimate the risk of injury with benzodiazepine use and to determine the extent to which patient characteristics, differences in dosage, or in the effect of increasing dosage for individual drugs explained differences between drugs.
More than one-quarter (27.6%) of 253,244 elderly were dispensed at least one prescription for a benzodiazepine, and 17.7% of elderly were treated for at least one injury during follow-up, of which fractures were the most common. Patient characteristics, systematic differences in the risk of injury in elderly prescribed different benzodiazepines, and differences in dosage prescribed for individual drugs confounded the risk of injury with benzodiazepine use. The risk of injury with increasing dosage varied by drug from a hazard ratio of 0.92 (95% confidence interval (CI)=0.60, 1.42) for alprazolam to 2.20 (95% CI=1.39, 3.47) for flurazepam per 1 standardized adult dose increase.
The risk of injury varied by benzodiazepine, independent of half-life, as did the risk associated with increasing dosage for individual products. Higher doses of oxazepam, flurazepam, and chlordiazepoxide are associated with the greatest risk of injury in the elderly.
This study documents the radiation doses received by all in-room personnel of three cardiac catheterization laboratories where more than 15,000 cardiac procedures have been performed over a 5-y period. It is shown that all in-room personnel was exposed to a body dose equivalent well below any regulatory limits. However, some workers may have exceeded the occupational 150 mSv y-1 recommended limit for the lens of the eye. The physicians-in-training and the staff physicians are the two groups more likely to reach this limit. It is also demonstrated that a low correlation exists between the annual number of procedures and the annual head dose equivalent of a physician, but more variation is likely to originate from his/her working attitude and techniques. The mean dose equivalent at the collar level of the physicians is estimated to be 0.04 +/- 0.02 mSv per procedure.