Global Health & Medicine
Online ISSN : 2434-9194
Print ISSN : 2434-9186
Advance online publication
Displaying 1-11 of 11 articles from this issue
  • Makiko Kimura, Tomoki Nishikawa, Tetsuro Shimakami, Takeshi Terashima, ...
    Article type: research-article
    Article ID: 2024.01008
    Published: 2024
    Advance online publication: May 23, 2024
    JOURNAL FREE ACCESS ADVANCE PUBLICATION

    Hepatitis B and C (HBV and HCV) testing has been performed in Japan since 2002 and is subsidized by central and prefectural governments. A follow-up program for HBV- or HCV-infected persons was started at that time in Ishikawa Prefecture. This study analyzed the long-term follow-up data from this program. In total, 1029 participants in the Ishikawa Hepatitis Follow-up Program (HBV-infected, n = 535; HCV-infected, n = 494) were enrolled. Clinical data between the first visit and the most recent visit by March 2019 were collected. In the HBV-infected group, 384 persons (71.8%) were asymptomatic carriers, 133 (24.9%) developed chronic hepatitis, 15 (2.8%) developed compensated liver cirrhosis, and 3 (0.6%) developed decompensated liver cirrhosis. Ninety (16.8%) were treated with nucleotide/nucleoside analogs. Sixteen (3.0%) developed liver cancer. In the HCV-infected group, 427 persons (86.4%) developed chronic hepatitis, 46 (9.3%) developed compensated liver cirrhosis, and 21 (4.3%) developed decompensated liver cirrhosis. Forty-eight (9.7%) developed liver cancer. Three hundred and seventy-eight (76.5%) received antiviral therapy (a direct-acting antiviral in 166, interferon-based treatment followed by a direct-acting antiviral in 73, and interferon-based treatment in 139). The subsidy system was used by 270 persons (71.4%). Sustained virological response was confirmed in 340 persons (68.8%). A higher FIB-4 index at the first visit was a significant risk factor for liver cancer in HBV-infected and HCV-infected persons. The Ishikawa Hepatitis Follow-up Program has revealed the clinical course of HBV and HCV infection in community-dwelling individuals. The results will be used for micro-elimination at a prefectural level.

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  • Keiji Konishi, Satoshi Kutsuna, Kei Yamamoto, Hidetoshi Nomoto, Michin ...
    Article ID: 2023.01129
    Published: 2024
    Advance online publication: May 20, 2024
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    International travel is a risk factor for acquiring sexually transmitted infections (STIs) owing to factors such as increased sexual opportunities, a sense of freedom, and the allure of the sex industry. We investigated the incidence of travel-associated STIs in Japan using data from the Japan Registry for Infectious Diseases from Abroad (J-RIDA) reported by 17 participating medical institutions between October 2017 and December 2022. Data were collected on the patients' age, sex, nationality, chief complaint, whether they had visited a travel clinic before travel, travel history, and final diagnosis. Of 4545 cases of travel-associated illness reported, 52 (1.1%) were STIs. Most patients with STIs were male (81%) with a median age of 31 years. HIV (17%), genital herpes (13%), syphilis (13%), and gonorrhea (12%) were the most frequently reported STIs. Only one patient had visited a travel clinic before travel. Promoting awareness and vaccination is crucial for preventing travel-associated STIs.

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  • Michio Noda, Taketo Kawai, Kanade Hagiwara, Takahiro Yoshida, Kazuki Y ...
    Article type: research-article
    Article ID: 2024.01019
    Published: 2024
    Advance online publication: May 20, 2024
    JOURNAL FREE ACCESS ADVANCE PUBLICATION

    In recent years, randomized controlled trials have demonstrated that upfront androgen receptor signaling inhibitors (ARSIs) prolong overall survival (OS) compared with androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) alone or combined androgen blockade (CAB) in patients with metastatic castration-sensitive prostate cancer (mCSPC). However, it remains unclear whether upfront ARSI is superior to CAB in Asian populations, among which the efficacy of ADT/CAB is considered relatively high. In this study, we compared the oncological outcomes of upfront ARSI and CAB in Japanese patients with mCSPC. Patients with mCSPC who underwent systemic therapy between May 2009 and October 2023 were enrolled retrospectively. Propensity score matching (PSM) was performed to compare the castration-resistant prostate cancer-free survival (CRPC-FS), cancer-specific survival (CSS), and OS between patients treated with upfront ARSI (ARSI group) and those treated with CAB (CAB group). In total, 30 and 142 patients were enrolled in the ARSI and CAB groups, respectively. After PSM (25 patients in each group), CRPC-FS was significantly longer in the ARSI group than in the CAB group (median: 36.7 vs. 12.3 months, hazard ratio: 0.44, 95% confidence interval: 0.20–0.97, p = 0.035). No significant differences were observed in CSS or OS between the two groups. In conclusion, when compared to CAB, upfront ARSI might have the potential to extend CRPC-FS among individuals in the Japanese population.

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  • Kensuke Komatsu, Sota Kimura, Yoko Kiryu, Aki Watanabe, Ei Kinai, Shin ...
    Article type: research-article
    Article ID: 2023.01108
    Published: 2024
    Advance online publication: May 04, 2024
    JOURNAL FREE ACCESS ADVANCE PUBLICATION

    People living with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) are at high risk of mental health problems. However, little is known about this risk in HIV-infected patients with hemophilia (HPH) who contracted the virus through blood products. This cross-sectional, observational study assessed patients' mood states and the factors associated with them among Japanese HPH to evaluate the need for psychosocial support. HPH completed self-administered questionnaires (Profile of Mood States [POMS] and General Health Questionnaire-28), neuropsychological tests, and brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography/computerized tomography scans. HIV-infected patients with no hemophilia (HPnH) completed POMS and neuropsychological tests. Socio-demographic characteristics and HIV- and hemophilia-related data were obtained from participants' medical records and interviews. A Mann–Whitney U test and chi-squared analyses were conducted. Fifty-six HPH and 388 HPnH completed the questionnaires and neuropsychological tests. HPH had a significantly lower prevalence of tension–anxiety (HPH, 7%; HPnH, 18%; p = 0.049) and a significantly higher prevalence of low vigor (HPH, 63%; HPnH, 32%; p < 0.001). Low vigor in HPH was significantly associated with impaired executive function (low vigor, 66%; high vigor, 33%; p = 0.019) and a social dysfunction score ≥ 3 (moderate; low vigor, 26%; high vigor, 5%; p = 0.047). Our results highlight the high prevalence of low vigor among HPH, leading to impairments in executive and social functions. Therefore, healthcare workers need to pay attention to the vigor, executive function, and social function of HPH.

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  • Sanmei Wen, Xinyue Wang, Rongfeng Zhou, Tetsuya Asakawa
    Article type: research-article
    Article ID: 2024.01003
    Published: 2024
    Advance online publication: April 21, 2024
    JOURNAL FREE ACCESS ADVANCE PUBLICATION

    The aim of this study was to investigate trends in suicide rates (SRs) among the elderly in China. Annual data on SRs among Chinese people ≥ the age of 65 were collected from China's Health Statistics Yearbook from 2002 to 2020. Then, data were stratified by age, region, and sex. Standardized SRs were calculated and analyzed using a conventional joinpoint regression model. Results revealed that overall, SRs among the elderly in China tended to decline from 2002–2020. Fluctuations in SRs, including in 2004–2005 due to the SARS epidemic, in 2009–2010 due to the economic crisis, and in 2019–2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, were also observed. Data suggested a relatively greater crude SR among the elderly (vs. young people), in males (vs. females), and in people living in a rural area (vs. those living in an urban area). SRs tended to rise with age. Joinpoint regression analysis identified joinpoints only for males ages 65–69 and over the age of 85 living in a rural area, suggesting that individuals in these groups are more sensitive to negative stimuli and more likely to commit suicide, necessitating closer attention. The findings from this study should help to make policy and devise measures against suicide in the future.

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  • Jingyi Ma, Fei Ma, Heng Zou
    Article ID: 2024.01027
    Published: 2024
    Advance online publication: April 21, 2024
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    In response to the twin challenges of an aging population and declining birth rates, Zhejiang, China pioneered the concept of "fertility-friendly hospitals" in 2022 to support families and individuals in navigating the complexities of childbirth. Although fertility-friendly hospitals have not yet scaled up in number, their potential benefits and the challenges they face are evident. These facilities aim to provide comprehensive services from preconception to postnatal care, necessitating a high level of specialization and resource allocation, with an emphasis on patient education and participatory decision-making. Currently, there is an uneven distribution of resources across regions in China, with the density of maternal and child health care facilities in developed areas exceeding that of less developed regions by more than tenfold. The establishment of fertility-friendly hospitals will help to slow the pace of population aging and mitigate further declines in birth rates, thereby balancing the population composition and promoting long-term equitable social development. However, they also face challenges in balancing resources, improving the quality of services, and improving accessibility across different regions. As the concept is promoted and practiced, fertility-friendly hospitals are expected to become a significant force supporting China’s population policy.

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  • Daiki Kato, Kazuhiko Yamada, Naoki Enomoto, Syusuke Yagi, Hanako Koda, ...
    Article type: research-article
    Article ID: 2023.01113
    Published: 2024
    Advance online publication: March 28, 2024
    JOURNAL FREE ACCESS ADVANCE PUBLICATION

    This retrospective, single-center study aimed to evaluate the impact of blood glucose (BG) markers on perioperative complications after esophagectomy in a cohort of 176 patients. Study analyses included the correlation of daily maximum BG level and hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) with clinicopathological factors. Maximum BG levels were significantly higher on postoperative day (POD) 0 than on PODs 2, 3, 5, and 7 (p < 0.05). Additionally, maximum BG levels on PODs 1, 2, and 7 were significantly higher in patients with preoperative HbA1c levels of ≥ 5.6% than in those with preoperative HbA1c levels of < 5.6% (p < 0.05 for all). The rates of any complications and infectious complications were higher in patients with preoperative HbA1c levels of < 5.6% than in those with preoperative HbA1c levels of ≥ 5.6% (p < 0.05 for both). A preoperative HbA1c level of < 5.6% was a significant predictor of infectious complications after esophagectomy by logistic regression analysis (p < 0.05). Maximum BG level after esophagectomy remained high in patients with high preoperative HbA1c levels, whereas a normal HbA1c level was an independent risk factor for infectious complications.

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  • Shohei Kawaguchi, Shiro Onozawa, Hirokazu Momose, Ryota Matsuki, Masah ...
    Article ID: 2023.01105
    Published: 2024
    Advance online publication: March 27, 2024
    JOURNAL FREE ACCESS ADVANCE PUBLICATION

    Outflow block of the liver is a life-threatening event after living donor liver transplantation. Herein, we rescued a patient suffering from the outflow block of the remnant left hemiliver caused by bending of the left hepatic vein (LHV) after right hemihepatectomy plus caudate lobectomy combined with resection of the middle hepatic vein (MHV). A metastatic tumor sized 6 cm in the caudate lobe of the liver involving the root of the MHV was found in a 50's year old patient after resection of a right breast cancer eight years ago. Right hemihepatectomy and caudate lobectomy combined with resection of the MHV was performed using a two-stage hepatectomy (partial TIPE ALPPS). On day 1, the total bilirubin value increased to 4.5 mg/dL, and a dynamic computed tomography (CT) scan showed the bent LHV. On the diagnosis of outflow block of the left liver, a self-expandable metallic stent was placed in the LHV using an interventional approach, and the pressure in the LHV decreased from 27 cmH2O to 12 cmH2O. The bilirubin value decreased to 1.2 mg/dL on day 3. Outflow block of the LHV can happen after extended right hemihepatectomy with resection of the MHV. Early diagnosis and interventional stenting treatment can rescue the patient from congestive liver failure.

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  • Keisuke Sato, Shinji Tanaka, Hiroshi Urakawa, Ryo Murayama, Eiko Hisat ...
    Article type: research-article
    Article ID: 2023.01085
    Published: 2024
    Advance online publication: March 15, 2024
    JOURNAL FREE ACCESS ADVANCE PUBLICATION

    The purpose of this study is to further verify the concept utilizing signal intensity on hepatobiliary phase (HBP) of gadoxetate-enhanced MRI and extracellular volume fraction (ECV) calculated from CT data. Between Jan 2013 and September 2018, consecutive ALD patients who had both quadruple phase CT and gadoxetate-enhanced MRI within six months were retrospectively recruited. Those who had any intervention or disease involvement around gallbladder fossa were excluded. All images were reviewed and ECV was measured by two experienced radiologists. GBFN grades, and their HBP signal intensity or ECV relative to the surrounding background liver (BGL) were analyzed. There were 48 patients who met the inclusion criteria. There were GBFN grade 0/1/2/3 in 11/15/18/4 patients, respectively. The signal intensity on HBP relative to BGL were iso/slightly high/high in 30/15/3 patients, respectively, and ECV ratio (ECV of GBFN divided by that of BGL) was 0.88 ± 0.18, indicating there are more functioning hepatocytes and less fibrosis in GBFN than in BGL. The GBFN grades were significantly correlated to relative signal intensity at HBP (Spearman's rank correlation, p < 0.01, rho value 0.53), and ECV ratio (p < 0.01, rho value -0.45). Our results suggest GBFN in ALD would represent liver tissues with preserved liver function with less fibrosis, as compared to BGL, which are considered to support our hypothesis as shown above.

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  • Xiehua Yuan, Linlin Lu, Ruhe Jiang, Yue Yu, Jing Zhou, Ling Wang, Yan ...
    Article ID: 2023.01100
    Published: 2024
    Advance online publication: February 21, 2024
    JOURNAL FREE ACCESS ADVANCE PUBLICATION

    Lacking of adequate knowledge is an obstacle to effective prevention of cervical cancer, yet factors that affect the information acquisition and seeking behavior as well as the information communication process are not well studied. We assessed information acquisition and seeking behavior, as well as perceived barriers of doctor-patient communication regarding human papilloma virus (HPV)-related information of infected women. Among 437 participants, 405 (93%) expressed demands for HPV-related information, while only a small proportion (100/437, 22.9%) actively sought information and felt obstacles comprehending. Web-based channels were most frequently utilized and medical personnel were the most trusted information source. Patients' satisfaction was significantly correlated with doctor's patience (r = 0.581, p < 0.001) and emotional caring (r = 0.555, p < 0.001). Compared to patients not actively seeking information, those actively seeking information were more likely to be single (p = 0.005), had higher education (p = 0.009) and monthly individual-level income (p = 0.023), and was more likely to undergo regular cervical cancer screening (p = 0.003), and were already or willing to be vaccinated (p = 0.008). The actively seeking information group also achieved higher scores in HPV knowledge test (p = 0.007). Public health interventions targeting HPV-infected women using specifically designed educational materials may influence information seeking behavior, increase HPV literacy and knowledge, which could potentially increase HPV vaccine uptake and cervical cancer screening rate.

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  • Norihiro Kokudo, Takashi Kokudo, Peipei Song, Wei Tang
    Article type: editorial
    Article ID: 2024.01002
    Published: 2024
    Advance online publication: February 06, 2024
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    The recent dramatic progress in systemic therapy for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) provides the possibility of a combination of surgery and systemic therapy including adjuvant, neoadjuvant, or conversion settings. Since the turn of the century, at least three negative studies have tested adjuvant therapies after curative resection or ablation, including uracil-tegafur, which is an oral chemotherapeutic drug, sorafenib, and peretinoin, which a synthetic retinoid that may induce the apoptosis and differentiation of liver cancer cells. Using more potent immuno-checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs), at least 4 phase III trials of adjuvant immunotherapy are ongoing: nivolumab, durvalumab/bevacizumab, pembrolizumab, and atezolizumab+bevacizumab. Very recently, the last trial indicated a significantly better recurrence-free survival (RFS) for adjuvant atezolizumab+bevacizumab. Another promising combination of surgery and systemic therapy is neoadjuvant therapy for potentially resectable cases or a conversion strategy for oncologically unresectable cases. There are 2 neoadjuvant trials for technically or oncologically unresectable HCCs ongoing in Japan: the LENS-HCC trial using lenvatinib and the RACB study using atezolizumab+bevacizumab. A longer follow-up may be needed, but the overall survival (OS) in resected cases seems much higher than that in unresectable cases. Recently, the Japan Liver Cancer Association (JLCA) and the Japanese Society of HPB Surgery (JSHPBS) created a joint working group on "so-called borderline resectable HCC". They obtained a Japanese consensus on this issue that has been published on the websites of JLCA and JSHPBS. The definition of resectability or borderline resectability provides a common language regarding advanced HCC for investigators and is a useful tool for future clinical trials.

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