Objective: The purpose of this study was to prospectively evaluate the efficacy and safety of micafungin (MCFG) in empirical therapy for febrile neutropenic patients for whom antibiotic therapy was not effective for hematological malignancies. Patients and Methods: Twenty-three hematological patients aged 27-82 years with febrile neutropenia for whom antibiotic therapy was not effective were enrolled in this study and responses to treatment were evaluated. Results: Treatment success rate was 73.9%. Treatment success rates by primary diagnosis were 77.8% in patients with AML, 50.0% in patients with NHL and 87.5% in patients with other diseases. Moreover, MCFG at a dose of 100 mg or more have a tendency to be effective. One or more adverse events occurred in five (27.7%) of the patients during the study. All of these adverse events were below grade 2 toxicity. Conclusions: Although the number of patients studied was limited, MCFG as a monotherapy seems to be effective and safe as an empirical therapy in patients with febrile neutropenia. However, further investigation using large-scale studies is needed. This study demonstrated the clinical efficacy and safety of MCFG in patients with febrile neutropenia and with hematological malignancies.
Objective: Early diagnosis of pyogenic vertebral osteomyelitis (PVO) is frequently difficult. There are, however, few studies that have investigated the diagnostic performance of PVO in Japan. Our aim was to analyze the diagnostic performance and identify clinical factors associated with the diagnostic delay of PVO. Materials and Methods: We performed hospital-based retrospective case analysis. All patients with PVO were identified from the computerized medical database at Okinawa Chubu Hospital in Okinawa, Japan, from January 1985 to December 2004. We collected the following data; baseline information; laboratory tests; clinical and microbiologic outcomes; and diagnostic process. We used multivariable-adjusted linear regression to identify significant factors associated with patient and hospital delay to the diagnosis of PVO. Results: We reviewed total of 209,428 patients hospitalized during the 20-year study period. Of those, we identified 51 patients with PVO. Eighty percent of these patients were misdiagnosed at their initial clinical encounters. Median duration from the symptom onset to the diagnosis was 19 days. Median durations of patient factor and hospital factor that contributed to the total delay were 1 and 8 days, respectively. Significant patient factor that contributed to delay was cognitive dysfunction. Conclusions: Cognitive dysfunction is a risk factor for patient delay for visiting physicians in patients with PVO. Diagnosis of PVO is difficult at the initial clinical encounter. High index of suspicion is needed for more rapid diagnosis of PVO.
Objective: To describe characteristics and outcomes for patients hospitalized with fever, not only patients with fever of unknown origin (FUO). Methods: Medical records were reviewed for 226 consecutive patients hospitalized in a Japanese referral hospital with fever as one of the clinical problems. Results: Although the majority of illnesses involved some sort of infection (54%), noninfectious inflammatory diseases, particularly adult Stills disease (n=6) and primary vasculitis syndromes (n=5) including 3 cases of Behçets disease, represented the leading cause in patients who met the definition of FUO [16/51(31%)]. Tuberculosis (n=6) and psychological disorders (n=6) were associated with late diagnosis. However, there was only one patient meeting the definition of FUO among those with a psychological disorder. Among the patients with prolonged fever who did not strictly meet the definition of FUO, there was a considerable number of patients with critical illnesses, such as intra-abdominal abscess, polymyalgia rheumatica, sarcoidosis, ulcerative colitis, Castlemans disease, hematological and solid malignancies, and panhypopituitarism. Drug-induced fever, systemic viral infection and unspecified vasculitis were difficult to definitively diagnose, although these pathologies were suspected as causes of fever. Follow-up of patients without definitive diagnosis at discharge confirmed that the fever subsided spontaneously or the cause of fever was properly treated after diagnosis in every patient and that none died of the underlying febrile illness. Conclusions: The present findings, from all patients displaying fever at hospitalization, are in agreement with findings from prior FUO series. Strict use of the definition of FUO is thus unwarranted when managing patients with prolonged fever.
Objective: Our objective was to determine the causes and relative prevalence of hypercalcemia in patients at a major community hospital in Okinawa, Japan. Additionally, we compared these causes of hypercalcemia with the previously published international data. Materials and Methods: We analyzed all patients with hypercalcemia in a community teaching hospital in Okinawa, Japan, from 1999 to 2002 and determined the cause of hypercalcemia in each patient. We also performed a literature review of the original articles describing causes of hypercalcemia in patients from Eastern as well as Western countries. Results: We identified 145 patients with hypercalcemia (median age, 69; range, 22 to 97). Major causes included malignant disorders (n=100; 69%), primary hyperparathyroidism (n=31; 21%), vitamin D-induced (n=4; 3%), and miscellaneous or unknown cause in 11 (8%). Among malignant disorders, adult T cell leukemia was the most frequent (n=35), being followed by lung cancer (n=25). Breast carcinoma was less prevalent (n=4). Conclusion: The major causes of hypercalcemia are malignancy and primary hyperparathyroidism in Okinawan Japanese patients. Adult T cell leukemia and lung carcinoma are among the top leading malignancies, while breast carcinoma is less frequent in this patient population. The etiologic prevalence of hypercalcemia in the Eastern population including Okinawans is significantly different from that in the Western population.
A 63-year-old man was admitted to hospital in 2003 for treatment of a hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). He was negative for HBs antigen (HBsAg) and anti-HCV antibody, and positive for anti-HBs. He had a past history of chronic hepatitis B. In 1986, HBsAg had become negative with the development of anti-HBs. In 2003, an HCC was detected and liver resection was carried out. Histological examination revealed moderately differentiated HCC and slightly fibrotic liver. It is suggested that a diagnosis of HCC, combined with negativity for HBsAg and anti-HCV antibody, may include cases of past recovery from chronic hepatitis B, such as this case.
We report two sibling cases of Addisons disease without any evidence of sexual precocity, adrenal hyperplasia, or autoimmune disease. The diagnosis of primary adrenocortical insufficiency was made at the age of 5 in the younger brother and at the age of 18 in the elder brother. The younger brother had been inactive during infancy and had diffuse skin pigmentation without abnormal external genitalia, while the elder brother had been healthy until the age of 17 when he noticed skin pigmentation and small testes. Both boys had delayed puberty due to hypogonadotropic hypogonadism. The diagnosis of adrenal hypoplasia congenita (AHC) was established by genetic analysis of DAX-1 gene (dosage-sensitive sex reversal-adrenal hypoplasia gene on the X chromosome, gene 1) with the same single frameshift mutation (305delG). However, yet-uncharacterized epigenetic, nongenetic and/or genetic factors other than the DAX-1 gene may be responsible for the differential onset of AHC in these sibling cases.
We report a case of pneumatosis intestinalis in a diabetic patient with minimal change nephrotic syndrome, receiving immunosuppressive drugs and an α-glucosidase inhibitor. The patient was a 72-year-old female, who suffered from right lower abdominal pain. Abdominal CT showed massive air in the intestinal wall, compatible with pneumatosis intestinalis. Her general condition rapidly deteriorated with systemic inflammatory response syndrome. The patient had received respiratory support for a week, along with antimicrobial therapy and continuous hemofiltration, and then recovered. Even though pneumatosis intestinalis is generally recognized as a mild disease, careful attention is necessary when it follows a serious condition.
We report on an obese man with sleep stage-dependent apnea. His type of apnea was predominantly central during non-rapid eye movement (NREM) sleep, while it was obstructive during rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. We found significantly more and more severe apneas during REM sleep compared to NREM sleep. His apneas were remarkably reduced by position adjustment, suggesting that upper airway collapse played a key role in the induction of both types of apnea. As his apneic patterns were dependent on the sleep stages, we assumed that the balance between upper airway obstruction and instability of central respiratory control might be important in determining the expression types.
We present a case of a 38-year-old Japanese man with Wegeners granulomatosis complicated with pulmonary-renal syndrome, i.e., diffuse pulmonary hemorrhage and rapidly progressive renal glomerulonephritis. As this is a life-threatening condition, we promptly initiated plasma exchange with intravenous methylprednisolone therapy. Diffuse pulmonary hemorrhage and renal failure were markedly improved. This case merits presentation because there are few clinical studies of the treatment of Wegeners granulomatosis with pulmonary-renal syndrome, particularly with pulmonary hemorrhage.