Bariatric Surgery Did Not Increase the Risk of Gallstone Disease in Obese Patients: a Comprehensive Cohort Study

The aim of this study was to evaluate the influence of bariatric surgery on gallstone disease in obese patients.
This large cohort retrospective study was conducted based on the Taiwan National Health Insurance Research Database. All patients 18-55 years of age with a diagnosis code for obesity (ICD-9-CM codes 278.00-278.02 or 278.1) between 2003 and 2010 were included. Patients with a history of gallstone disease and hepatic malignancies were excluded. The patients were divided into non-surgical and bariatric surgery groups. Obesity surgery was defined by ICD-9-OP codes. We also enrolled healthy civilians as the general population. The primary end point was defined as re-hospitalization with a diagnosis of gallstone disease after the index hospitalization. All patients were followed until the end of 2013, a biliary complication occurred, or death.
Two thousand three hundred seventeen patients in the bariatric surgery group, 2331 patients in the non-surgical group, and 8162 patients in the general population were included. Compared to the non-surgery group (2.79%), bariatric surgery (2.89%) did not elevate the risk of subsequent biliary events (HR = 1.075, p = 0.679). Compared to the general population (1.15%), bariatric surgery group had a significantly higher risk (HR = 4.996, p < 0.001). In the bariatric surgery group, female gender (HR = 1.774, p = 0.032) and a restrictive procedure (HR = 1.624, p = 0.048) were risk factors for gallstone disease.
The risk for gallstone disease did not increase after bariatric surgery, although the risk was still higher than the general population. The benefit of concomitant cholecystectomy during bariatric surgery should be carefully evaluated.

Percutaneous versus open pedicle screw instrumentation in treatment of thoracic and lumbar spine fractures: A systematic review and meta-analysis

To assess the safety and efficacy of percutaneous short-segment pedicle instrumentation compared with conventionally open short-segment pedicle instrumentation and provide recommendations for using these procedures to treat thoracolumbar fractures.
The Medline database, Cochrane database of Systematic Reviews, Cochrane Clinical Trial Register, and Embase were searched for articles published. The randomized controlled trials (RCTs) and non-RCTs that compared percutaneous short-segment pedicle instrumentation to open short-segment pedicle instrumentation and provided data on safety and clinical effects were included. Demographic characteristics, clinical outcomes, radiological outcomes, and adverse events were manually extracted from all of the selected studies. Methodological quality of included studies using Methodological Index for Non-Randomized Studies scale and Cochrane collaboration’s tool for assessing the risk of bias by 2 reviewers independently.
Nine studies encompassing 433 patients met the inclusion criteria. Subgroup meta-analyses were performed according to the study design. The pooled results showed there were significant differences between the 2 techniques in short- and long-term visual analog scale, intraoperative blood loss, operative time, postoperative draining loss, hospital stay, and incision size, although there were no significant differences in postoperative radiological outcomes, Oswestry Disability Index, hospitalization cost, intraoperative fluoroscopy time, and adverse events.
Percutaneous short-segment pedicle instrumentation in cases with achieve satisfactory results, could replace in many cases extensive open surgery and not increased related complications. However, further high-quality RCTs are needed to assess the long-term outcome of patients between 2 techniques.

Double-island anterolateral thigh free flap used in reconstruction for salvage surgery for locally recurrent head and neck carcinoma

Salvage surgery is usually the only treatment for recurrent head and neck tumors but often poses a challenge to surgeons due to post-resected defects at 2 or more sites. Here we present the outcomes and rationale for reconstruction by a double-island anterolateral thigh (ALT) free flap following the salvage surgery.Patients treated with double-island ALT free flaps in salvage surgery between September 2012 and January 2017 at West China Hospital, Sichuan University were retrospectively viewed.A total of 18 patients (15 males) underwent reconstruction with double-island ALT free flaps (range from 40 to 77 years old). All patients had recurrent tumors after surgery and/or chemoradiotherapy and were selected for salvage surgery by a multidisciplinary team. The flaps were initially harvested as 7 cm × 7 cm to 16 cm × 10 cm single blocks and then divided into double-island flaps with each individual paddle ranging from5 cm × 3 cm to 10 cm × 8 cm. The average flap thickness was 3.5 cm (range from 2 to 6 cm), and the average pedicle length was 8 cm (range from 6 to 10 cm). A total of 18 arteries and 32 veins were anastomosed. Three patients developed fistula, 1 developed flap failure due to thrombosis and was re-operated with a pedicle flap. One patient died of pulmonary infection 6 months after the operation.Flap reconstruction for complex head and neck defects after salvage surgery remains challenging, but double-island ALT free flap reconstruction conducted by a multidisciplinary team and experienced surgeons would have a role in this setting

A case report of a polytrauma patient with penetrating iron rods in thorax and head

Impalement injury is an uncommon presentation, and penetrating chest injuries account for 1% to 13% of thoracic trauma hospital admissions. The vast majority of patients with penetrating thoracic trauma who survive to reach the hospital alive can be managed nonoperatively. Nevertheless, in 10% to 15% of cases, emergency operation is necessary due to the associated hemorrhagic shock and visceral injury.
Here, we report on a 39-year-old male, a construction worker, who fell down from a height of a construction site, landing ventrally on a clump of iron rods with 4 projecting heavy metallic rods penetrating into his thorax and head (scalp pierced only). Emergency surgery was taken, and the patient had an uneventful successful outcome.
After massive thoracic impalement, rapid transportation to a tertiary trauma center with the impaled objects in situ can improve the outcome. Video-assisted thoracic surgery (VATS) is recommended to remove the foreign body under direct vision and to reduce the incidence of missed, potentially fatal vascular or visceral injuries.

Effects of income and residential area on survival of patients with head and neck cancers following radiotherapy: working age individuals in Taiwan.

The five-year survival rate of head and neck cancer (HNC) after radiotherapy (RT) varies widely from 35% to 89%. Many studies have addressed the effect of socioeconomic status and urban dwelling on the survival of HNC, but a limited number of studies have focused on the survival rate of HNC patients after RT.During the period of 2000-2013, 40,985 working age individuals (20 < age  medium income group > low income group and northern > central > southern > eastern Taiwan. Patients with moderate income levels had a 36.9% higher risk of mortality as compared with patients with high income levels (hazard ratio (HR) = 1.369; p < 0.001). Patients with low income levels had a 51.4% greater risk of mortality than patients with high income levels (HR = 1.514, p < 0.001).In Taiwan, income and residential area significantly affected the survival rate of HNC patients receiving RT. The highest income level group had the best survival rate, regardless of the geographic area. The difference in survival between the low and high income groups was still pronounced in more deprived areas.

Incidence of unintended pregnancy among female sex workers in low-income and middle-income countries: a systematic review and meta-analysis.

To determine the incidence of unintended pregnancy among female sex workers (FSWs) in low-income and middle-income countries (LMICs).We searched MEDLINE, PsychInfo, Embase and Popline for papers published in English between January 2000 and January 2016, and Web of Science and Proquest for conference abstracts. Meta-analysis was performed on the primary outcomes using random effects models, with subgroup analysis used to explore heterogeneity.Eligible studies targeted FSWs aged 15-49 years living or working in an LMIC.Studies were eligible if they provided data on one of two primary outcomes: incidence of unintended pregnancy and incidence of pregnancy where intention is undefined. Secondary outcomes were also extracted when they were reported in included studies: incidence of induced abortion; incidence of birth; and correlates/predictors of pregnancy or unintended pregnancy.Twenty-five eligible studies were identified from 3866 articles. Methodological quality was low overall. Unintended pregnancy incidence showed high heterogeneity (I²>95%), ranging from 7.2 to 59.6 per 100 person-years across 10 studies. Study design and duration were found to account for heterogeneity. On subgroup analysis, the three cohort studies in which no intervention was introduced had a pooled incidence of 27.1 per 100 person-years (95% CI 24.4 to 29.8; I2=0%). Incidence of pregnancy (intention undefined) was also highly heterogeneous, ranging from 2.0 to 23.4 per 100 person-years (15 studies).Of the many studies examining FSWs’ sexual and reproductive health in LMICs, very few measured pregnancy and fewer assessed pregnancy intention. Incidence varied widely, likely due to differences in study design, duration and baseline population risk, but was high in most studies, representing a considerable concern for this key population. Evidence-based approaches that place greater importance on unintended pregnancy prevention need to be incorporated into existing sexual and reproductive health programmes for FSWs.CRD42016029185.

Trachomatous trichiasis and its management in endemic countries

Trichiasis is the sight-threatening consequence of conjunctival scarring in trachoma, the most common infectious cause of blindness worldwide. Trachomatous trichiasis is the result of multiple infections from childhood with Chlamydia trachomatis, which causes recurrent chronic inflammation in the tarsal conjunctiva. This produces conjunctival scarring, entropion, trichiasis, and ultimately blinding corneal opacification. The disease causes painful, usually irreversible sight loss. Over eight million people have trachomatous trichiasis, mostly those living in poor rural communities in 57 endemic countries. The global cost is estimated at US$ 5.3 billion. The WHO recommends surgery as part of the SAFE strategy for controlling the disease.We examine the principles of clinical management, treatment options, and the challenging issues of providing the quantity and quality of surgery that is needed in resource-poor settings.

From cutting to casting: impact and initial barriers to the Ponseti method of clubfoot treatment in China.

In 2005, a nationwide clubfoot treatment program focused on the Ponseti method -an effective, affordable and minimally-invasive method- was initiated in China. The purpose of this study was to evaluate and identify barriers to the program. A qualitative study (rapid ethnographic study) was conducted using semi-structured interviews of 44 physicians who attended four of the 10 Ponseti training workshops, focus groups with parents of children with clubfoot, and observation. Several barriers to the Ponseti method are quite unique due to China’s size, socio-economics, culture, politics, and healthcare systems. The barriers were classified into seven themes: (i) physician education, (ii) caregiver compliance, (iii) culture, (iv) public awareness, (v) poverty, (vi) financial constraints for physicians/hospitals, and (vii) challenges of the treatment process. A number of suggestions that could be helpful in reducing or eliminating the effects of these barriers were also identified: (i) pamphlets explaining clubfoot and treatment for caregivers, (ii) directories of Ponseti providers, (iii) funding/financial support, and (iv) improving public awareness. The information from this study provides healthcare planners with knowledge to assist in meeting the needs of the population and continued implementation of effective and culturally appropriate awareness and treatment programs for clubfoot throughout China.

Epilepsy in Asia: Disease burden, management barriers, and challenges.

This article reviews the burden of epilepsy in Asia, the challenges faced by people with epilepsy, and the management of epilepsy. Comparison is made with other parts of the world. For this narrative review, data were collected using specified search criteria. Articles investigating the epidemiology of epilepsy, diagnosis, comorbidities and associated mortality, stigmatization, and treatment were included. Epilepsy is a global health care issue affecting up to 70 million people worldwide. Nearly 80% of people with epilepsy live in low- and middle-income countries with limited resources. People with epilepsy are prone to physical and psychological comorbidities, including anxiety and depression, which can negatively impact their quality of life. Furthermore, people with epilepsy are at higher risk of premature death than people without epilepsy. Discrimination or stigmatization of people with epilepsy is common in Asia and can affect their education, work, and marriage opportunities. Access to epilepsy treatment varies throughout Asia. Although highly advanced treatment is available in some countries, up to 90% of people with epilepsy are not adequately treated or are not treated with conventional antiepileptic therapy in resource-limited countries. People in remote areas often do not receive any epilepsy care. First-generation antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) are available, but usually only in urban areas, and second-generation AEDs are not available in all countries. Newer AEDs tend to have more favorable safety profiles than first-generation AEDs and provide options to tailor therapy for individual patients, especially those with comorbidities. Active epilepsy surgery centers are present in some countries, although epilepsy surgery is often underutilized given the number of patients who could benefit. Further epidemiologic research is needed to provide accurate epilepsy data across the Asian region. Coordinated action is warranted to improve access to treatment and care.

Visual impairment and blindness in a population-based study of Mashhad, Iran.

Purpose
To determine the prevalence of visual impairment and blindness and related factors in the 1- to 90-year-old urban population of Mashhad.

Methods
In this cross-sectional study of 1- to 90-year-old residents of Mashhad, in northeastern Iran, sampling was done through random stratified cluster sampling (120 clusters). After selecting the samples and their participation in the study, all subjects had vision testing including measurement of visual acuity and refraction, as well as examinations with the slit-lamp and ophthalmoscopy. Visual impairment (primary outcomes) was defined as a visual acuity worse than of 0.5 logMAR (20/60) in the better eye.

Results
Of the 4453 selected persons, 3132 (70.4%) participated in the study. The prevalence of visual impairment based on presenting vision and best-corrected vision was 3.95% (95% confidence interval [CI]: 3.13–4.77) and 2.23 (95% CI: 1.54–2.91), respectively. The prevalence of presenting visual impairment increased from 1.59% in children under 5 years of age to 43.59% in people older than 65 years of age; these figures were respectively 1.59% and 42.31% based on corrected visual acuity. In the logistic regression model, older age (OR = 1.06, 95% CI: 1.04–1.07, P < 0.001), higher education (OR = 0.16, 95% CI: 0.06–0.38, P < 0.001), and low income (OR = 1.36, 95% CI: 1.21–1.72, P < 0.001) correlated with impaired sight. Based on presenting vision and best-corrected vision, the prevalence of blindness was 0.86% (95% CI: 0.51–1.22) and 0.32% (95% CI: 0.1–0.55). The most common causes of visual impairment were uncorrected refractive error (41.8%) and cataract (20%).

Conclusions
According to our findings, the prevalence of visual impairment was intermediate in comparison with other studies. The prevalence of visual impairment in our study was similar to the global average; however, it was markedly high at older ages. Nonetheless, refractive errors and cataracts remain as the main causes of impaired vision and blindness in this population, while these two conditions are easily treatable with correction or surgery.