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Achalasia is an esophageal motility disorder that is commonly misdiagnosed initially as gastroesophageal reflux disease. Patients with achalasia often complain of dysphagia with solids and liquids but may focus on regurgitation as the primary symptom, leading to initial misdiagnosis. Diagnostic tests for achalasia include esophageal motility testing, esophagogastroduodenoscopy and barium swallow. These tests play a complimentary role in establishing the diagnosis of suspected achalasia. High-resolution manometry has now identified three subtypes of achalasia, with therapeutic implications. Pneumatic dilation and surgical myotomy are the only definitive treatment options for patients with achalasia who can undergo surgery. Botulinum toxin injection into the lower esophageal sphincter should be reserved for those who cannot undergo definitive therapy. Close follow-up is paramount because many patients will have a recurrence of symptoms and require repeat treatment.
OBJECTIVE - To describe the presence of laryngeal eosinophils and associated symptomatology in patients with aerodigestive dysfunction.
STUDY DESIGN - Case series with chart review.
SETTING - Single tertiary pediatric referral center.
SUBJECTS - Eighty-one consecutive pediatric patients referred to a multidisciplinary aerodigestive clinic with upper airway concerns.
METHODS - Microlaryngoscopy and posterior arytenoid biopsy, flexible bronchoscopy, esophagogastroduodenoscopy and esophageal biopsy, and impedance probe testing were performed as indicated by clinical symptoms. Positive versus negative posterior arytenoid biopsy for eosinophils and the presence or absence of concomitant histopathological laryngitis and/or esophagitis were measured.
RESULTS - Nine of 81 (11%) patients had positive laryngeal biopsy for eosinophils (range, 1-29 eosinophils/high-powered field [HPF]). Three of these 9 patients also had concurrent biopsy-proven eosinophilic esophagitis, while 8 of 81 total patients had biopsy-proven eosinophilic esophagitis. The frequency of biopsy-proven eosinophilic esophagitis was higher in patients with posterior arytenoid eosinophils versus patients without laryngeal eosinophils (33% versus 6.9%, P = .0408).
CONCLUSIONS - Eosinophilic inflammation in the larynx has not been described in children with complex aerodigestive complaints. Posterior arytenoid eosinophils may serve as a marker of chronic laryngeal inflammation in children with aerodigestive dysfunction, although their exact role in this inflammation remains unclear. In our population, >15 eosinophils/HPF within posterior arytenoid biopsies was associated with concomitant eosinophilic esophagitis.
© American Academy of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery Foundation 2015.
OBJECTIVE Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) is a common hospital-acquired infection. Previous reports on the incidence, risk factors, and impact of CDI on resources in the surgical population are limited. In this context, we study CDI across diverse surgical settings. METHODS We prospectively identified patients with laboratory-confirmed postoperative CDI after 40 different general, vascular, or gynecologic surgeries at 52 academic and community hospitals between July 2012 and September 2013. We used multivariable regression models to identify CDI risk factors and to determine the impact of CDI on resource utilization. RESULTS Of 35,363 patients, 179 (0.51%) developed postoperative CDI. The highest rates of CDI occurred after lower-extremity amputation (2.6%), followed by bowel resection or repair (0.9%) and gastric or esophageal operations (0.7%). Gynecologic and endocrine operations had the lowest rates (0.1% and 0%, respectively). By multivariable analyses, older age, chronic immunosuppression, hypoalbuminemia (≤3.5 g/dL), and preoperative sepsis were associated with CDI. Use of prophylactic antibiotics was not independently associated with CDI, neither was sex, body mass index (BMI), surgical priority, weight loss, or comorbid conditions. Three procedure groups had higher odds of postoperative CDI: lower-extremity amputations (adjusted odds ratio [aOR], 3.5; P=.03), gastric or esophageal operations (aOR, 2.1; P=.04), and bowel resection or repair (aOR, 2; P=.04). Postoperative CDI was independently associated with increased length of stay (mean, 13.7 d vs 4.5 d), emergency department presentations (18.9 vs 9.1%) and readmissions (38.9% vs 7.2%, all P<.001). CONCLUSIONS Incidence of postoperative CDI varies by surgical procedure. Postoperative CDI is also associated with higher rates of extended length of stay, emergency room presentations, and readmissions, which places a potentially preventable burden on hospital resources.
Metabolic disorders, including obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease, are widespread in Westernized nations. Gut microbiota composition is a contributing factor to the susceptibility of an individual to the development of these disorders; therefore, altering a person's microbiota may ameliorate disease. One potential microbiome-altering strategy is the incorporation of modified bacteria that express therapeutic factors into the gut microbiota. For example, N-acylphosphatidylethanolamines (NAPEs) are precursors to the N-acylethanolamide (NAE) family of lipids, which are synthesized in the small intestine in response to feeding and reduce food intake and obesity. Here, we demonstrated that administration of engineered NAPE-expressing E. coli Nissle 1917 bacteria in drinking water for 8 weeks reduced the levels of obesity in mice fed a high-fat diet. Mice that received modified bacteria had dramatically lower food intake, adiposity, insulin resistance, and hepatosteatosis compared with mice receiving standard water or control bacteria. The protective effects conferred by NAPE-expressing bacteria persisted for at least 4 weeks after their removal from the drinking water. Moreover, administration of NAPE-expressing bacteria to TallyHo mice, a polygenic mouse model of obesity, inhibited weight gain. Our results demonstrate that incorporation of appropriately modified bacteria into the gut microbiota has potential as an effective strategy to inhibit the development of metabolic disorders.
BACKGROUND - Delayed-release dimethyl fumarate (DR-DMF) has cytoprotective and antiinflammatory properties and has recently been approved in the United States as an oral treatment for relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis. The most common adverse events associated with DR-DMF are flushing and gastrointestinal (GI) events, the incidences of which diminish over time.
OBJECTIVE - The purpose of this study was to evaluate the tolerability and pharmacokinetic (PK) profile of DR-DMF with or without concomitant acetylsalicylic acid (aspirin), a cyclooxygenase inhibitor.
METHODS - Healthy volunteers (N = 56) were randomized to receive different dosing regimens of DR-DMF or matching placebo with or without pretreatment with 325 mg aspirin for 4 days. Plasma levels of the active metabolite monomethyl fumarate were assessed on days 1 and 4. Flushing and GI events were assessed using patient-reported scales. Potential flushing mediators were explored.
RESULTS - DR-DMF showed a safety, tolerability, and PK profile consistent with previous clinical experience, with no evidence of accumulation. Pretreatment with aspirin had no effect on the primary PK parameters, AUC0-10h, or Cmax. Flushing severity, assessed by 2 subject-reported rating scales, was generally mild and was rated highest at the start of treatment. Pretreatment with aspirin reduced flushing incidence and intensity without affecting GI events or the PK profile of DR-DMF. In some DR-DMF-treated individuals, plasma concentrations of a prostaglandin D2 (PGD2) metabolite were increased.
CONCLUSIONS - In healthy volunteers, DR-DMF was well tolerated over 4 days of dosing, with a PK profile consistent with that previously reported and no evidence of accumulation. Aspirin pretreatment reduced the incidence and intensity of flushing without affecting GI events or the DR-DMF PK profile. Elevated levels of PGD2 in some DR-DMF-treated individuals suggest that flushing may be, at least in part, prostaglandin mediated. ClinicalTrials.gov identifier: ID: NCT01281111.
© 2013 The Authors. Published by Elsevier, Inc. All rights reserved.
Reflux related cough, asthma and laryngitis are frequently encountered and are considered part of extraoesophageal syndromes. The diagnosis of extraoesophageal reflux is difficult due to the lack of gold standard diagnostic criteria. Esophagogastroduodenoscopy and esophageal pH monitoring are inadequate diagnostic tools for due to poor sensitivity and specificity. For this reason, empirical PPI therapy is recommended as an initial approach to diagnose and treat the potential underlying cause of these symptoms in patients without alarm symptoms. Diagnostic testing with esophageal pH and/or impedance monitoring and esophageal motility testing is usually reserved for those who continue to be symptomatic despite a trial of therapy with PPIs. Recent developments have increased our understanding of this difficult to treat group of patients but more research into reflux related extraoesophageal symptoms are needed to better diagnose and treat this group.
Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
The homeobox gene Pdx1 is a key regulator of pancreas and foregut development. Loss of Pdx1 expression results in pancreas agenesis and impaired development of the gastro-duodenal domain including Brunners glands. We previously demonstrated a key role for Pdx1 in maintaining the integrity and function of insulin-secreting beta cells in the adult pancreas. In the present study, we aimed to determine if expression of Pdx1 is required to maintain the cellular identity of the gastro-duodenal domain in adult mice. Immunohistological studies were performed in a mouse model in which expression of Pdx1 was conditionally repressed with the doxycycline-responsive tetracycline transactivator system. Mice in which Pdx1 was chronically repressed developed hamartomas in the gastro-duodenal domain. These lesions appeared to arise from ectopic foci of anteriorized cells, consistent with a localised anterior homeotic shift. They emerge with the intercalation of tissue between the anteriorized and normal domains and appear strikingly similar to lesions in the colon of mice heterozygous for another Parahox gene, Cdx2. Continuing expression of Pdx1 into adult life is required to maintain regional cellular identity in the adult foregut, specifically at the gastro-duodenal boundary. Loss of Pdx1 expression leads to anterior transformation and intercalary regeneration of ectopic tissue. We propose a model in which the posterior dominance of classical Hox genes is mirrored by the Parahox genes, providing further evidence of the functional conservation of the Parahox genes. These findings may have implications for further understanding the molecular basis of gastro-duodenal metaplasia and gastro-intestinal transformations such as Barretts esophagus.
OBJECTIVES/HYPOTHESIS - Ambulatory esophageal impedance monitoring is commonly employed to assess for nonacid reflux in patients with extraesophageal reflux. We aimed to determine if on therapy impedance data can be predicted from off therapy upper endoscopy, manometry, or pH parameters.
STUDY DESIGN - Prospective Cohort Study.
METHODS - Patients with extraesophageal reflux symptoms and either partial- or nonresponders to twice-daily PPI underwent impedance monitoring on twice-daily PPI, as well as manometry, upper endoscopy, and 48-hour wireless pH monitoring off acid-suppressive medications for 1 week. Percent time pH < 4 and number of reflux episodes were obtained. Multivariable linear regression was used to determine association between the impedance data on therapy and upper endoscopy, manometry, and pH parameters measured off therapy.
RESULTS - Seventy-five patients (77% female, median BMI 29, 38% with hiatal hernia, and 19% with esophagitis) were studied both on and off therapy. Thirty-five percent had abnormal impedance monitoring on therapy and 84% had abnormal pH testing off therapy. There was no significant (P = 0.184) overall correlation between total number of impedance events and the baseline physiologic parameters of hiatal hernia, degree of acid reflux, or manometric findings, with only weak correlation (r = 0.54, P = 0.045) with % time pH < 4 among patients with esophagitis.
CONCLUSIONS - In patients with suspected extraesophageal reflux refractory to PPI therapy, impedance measures on therapy cannot be predicted from traditional baseline esophageal physiologic parameters. We recommend caution regarding over-interpretation of impedance data.
LEVEL OF EVIDENCE - 2b.
Copyright © 2013 The American Laryngological, Rhinological, and Otological Society, Inc.
BACKGROUND - Dysplasia and adenocarcinoma developing in Barrett's esophagus (BE) are not always endoscopically identifiable. Molecular markers are needed for early recognition of these focal lesions and to identify patients at increased risk of developing adenocarcinoma. The aim of the current study was to correlate increased telomerase activity (TA) with dysplasia and adenocarcinoma occurring in the setting of BE.
MATERIALS AND METHODS - Esophageal mucosal biopsies were obtained from patients (N=62) who had pathologically verified BE at esophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD). Mucosal biopsies were also obtained from the gastric fundus as controls. Based on histopathology, patients were divided into three groups: 1) BE without dysplasia (n=24); 2) BE with dysplasia (both high grade and low grade, n=13); and 3) BE with adenocarcinoma (n=25). TA was measured by a PCR-based assay (TRAPeze® ELISA Telomerase Detection Kit). Statistical analyses were performed using one-way ANOVA and post-hoc Bonferroni testing.
RESULTS - TA was significantly higher in biopsies of BE with dyplasia and BE with adenocarcinoma than in BE without dysplasia. Subgroup analyses did not reveal any significant correlations between TA and patient age, length of BE, or presence of gastritis.
CONCLUSIONS - Telomerase activity in esophageal mucosal biopsies of BE may constitute a useful biomarker for the early detection of esophageal dysplasia and adenocarcinoma.
OBJECTIVES - Extraesophageal symptoms are common manifestations of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). Lack of a definitive diagnostic or treatment standards complicate management, which often leads to multiple specialty consultations, procedures, pharmaceuticals and diagnostic tests. The aim of this study was to determine the economic burden associated with extraesophageal reflux (EER).
METHODS - Direct costs of evaluation were estimated for patients referred with symptoms attributed to EER between 2007 and 2011. Medicare payment for evaluation and management and pharmaceutical prices was used to calculate first year and overall costs of evaluating and treating extraesophageal symptoms attributed to reflux.
RESULTS - Overall, 281 patients were studied (cough (50%), hoarseness (23%), globus/post-nasal drainage (15%), asthma (9%), and sore throat (3%)). Over a median (interquartile range) of 32 (16-46) months follow-up, patients had a mean (95% confidence interval) of 10.1 (9.4-10.9) consultations with specialists and underwent 6.4 (3-9) diagnostic procedures. Overall, the mean initial year direct cost was $5,438 per patient being evaluated for EER. Medical and non-medical components contributed $5,154 and $283. Of the overall cost, 52% were attributable to the use of proton pump inhibitors. During the initial year, direct costs were 5.6 times higher than those reported for typical GERD ($971). A total of 54% of patients reported improvement of symptoms. Overall cost per improved patient was $13,700.
CONCLUSIONS - EER contributes substantially to health-care expenditures. In this cohort, the cost for initial year's evaluation and treatment of EER symptoms was quintuple that of typical GERD. Prescription costs and, in particular, proton pump inhibitors were the single greatest contributor to the cost of EER management.