Heitham Abdul-Baki

American University of Beirut, Beirut, Mohafazat Beyrouth, Lebanon

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Publications (20)74.29 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Cholangitis and biliary sepsis are rare but serious complications of endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP). The aim of this study is to investigate the safety, efficacy, and biliary penetration of ertapenem, a newer carbapenem with a long half-life and broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity, for ERCP prophylaxis. Patients with obstructive jaundice without cholangitis received a single dose of ertapenem equal to 1 gram intravenously prior to ERCP. A 2-3 mL bile sample was collected after cannulation and prior to contrast injection. Patients were observed for 72 hours for cholangitis or drug-related adverse events. Biliary ertapenem levels were measured using high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). Twenty-eight patients (ages 18-87 years, M/F ratio 1:1) were enrolled. Seven had no cholestasis and were included to study ertapenem penetration in unobstructed biliary trees. Cannulation was achieved in all patients. One patient (3.6%) with persistent intrahepatic stones developed cholangitis. No drug-related adverse events were noted. The mean time from ertapenem administration to bile collection was 60 ± 24 minutes. There was a significant negative correlation between serum bilirubin and biliary ertapenem levels (r = -0.542, P = 0.003) with the highest level (6.25 μg/mL) noted in unobstructed biliary systems. Ertapenem appears to be a safe and effective prophylaxis in patients with obstructive jaundice undergoing ERCP despite a limited biliary penetration in patients with high-grade obstruction.
    Southern medical journal 03/2011; 104(3):189-94. · 0.92 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Colonoscopy preparation usually involves the intake of large volumes of polyethylene glycol electrolyte solution (PEG-ES) in combination with a clear-liquid diet (CLD). Liberalization of the diet might enhance the tolerance to PEG-ES without compromising the quality of the preparation. The primary aims of this study were to evaluate the efficacy and tolerability of PEG-ES given with a CLD compared with a fiber-free diet (FFD) for colonoscopy preparation. The incidence of adverse events among patients in the two diet groups was also assessed as a secondary outcome. This was a single-center randomized, prospective, single-blind study. A total of 200 patients undergoing colonoscopy were randomized to either CLD or FFD in addition to PEG-ES. Patients in the FFD group were able to drink more PEG-ES (mean +/- SD, 3.9 +/- 0.3 L) compared with those in the CLD group (3.3 +/- 0.7 L) ( P < 0.01). The quality of the preparation was significantly better in the FFD group, with more patients having satisfactory preparations than those in the CLD group (81.4 % vs. 52.0 %; P < 0.001). Tolerance to the preparation was higher in the FFD group compared with the CLD group, with significantly more patients adhering to the FFD regimen ( P < 0.001). There were more adverse events experienced in the CLD group, with odds ratios of 1.9 for nausea (95 % confidence interval [CI] 1.0 - 3.6), 3.8 for vomiting (95 % CI 1.3 - 11.3), and 3.0 for headache (95 % CI 1.5 - 5.9). FFD given with PEG-ES on the day before colonoscopy is a more effective regimen than the standard CLD regimen, and is better tolerated by patients.
    Endoscopy 08/2010; 42(8):633-8. · 5.74 Impact Factor
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    Inflammatory Bowel Diseases 02/2010; 16(11):1819-20. · 5.12 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To study the efficacy of low-dose imipramine in relieving symptoms associated with the irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). A randomized, double-blind trial of 25 mg imipramine vs matched placebo for 12 wk was performed. Doubling the dose was allowed once at week 2 in case of an unsatisfactory early response. Primary efficacy variables were subjective global symptom relief and quality of life (QoL) using SF-36 at week 12. One hundred and seven patients were enrolled by advertisement or referral by general practitioners and 56 (31 imipramine: 25 placebo) completed the 16-wk study. Baseline characteristics were comparable. A high overall dropout rate was noted in the imipramine and placebo arms (47.5% vs 47.9%, P > 0.05), a mean of 25.0 and 37.4 d from enrollment, respectively (P < 0.05). At the end of 12 wk, there was a significant difference in global symptom relief with imipramine over placebo (per-protocol: 80.6% vs 48.0%, P = 0.01) and a trend on intent-to-treat (ITT) analysis (42.4% vs 25.0%, P = 0.06). This improvement was evident early and persisted to week 16 (P = 0.024 and 0.053 by per-protocol and ITT analyses, respectively). Mean cumulative and component-specific SF-36 scores improved in the imipramine group only (per-protocol, P < 0.01). Drug-related adverse events leading to patient dropout were more common in the imipramine group (25.4% vs 12.5%, P > 0.05). Imipramine may be effective in the treatment of IBS patients and is associated with improved QoL. Careful patient selection, initiation of a low dose with gradual escalation and monitoring for side effects may result in an improved therapeutic response.
    World Journal of Gastroenterology 08/2009; 15(29):3636-42. · 2.55 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To review the literature on the significance, risk factors, and management of occult and gross gastrointestinal (GI) bleeding in patients on antiplatelets and/or anticoagulants. Relevant original and review articles and their bibliographies were analyzed. Estimates of risks and therapeutic outcomes were obtained from randomized trials, whereas risk factor identification was gathered from cross-control and prospective cohort studies. Antiplatelets and anticoagulants do not diminish the positive predictive value of fecal occult blood testing to find GI pathology. They increase the risk of gross GI bleeding, and predictors of hemorrhage include history of GI bleeding or ulcer disease, higher intensity of anticoagulation, combination therapy, and presence of comorbid conditions. A bleeding site is identified in most patients with peptic ulcer being the most common. In case of significant bleeding, complete or partial reversal of anticoagulation is undertaken on the basis of the balance of risks between bleeding and thromboembolic events. Early endoscopy can reveal lesions requiring endoscopic hemostasis, which can be performed in the setting of low-intensity anticoagulation. In patients with history of peptic disease or bleeding from an acid-related lesion, proton-pump inhibitors and Helicobacter pylori eradication reduce the risk of upper GI bleeding even when antiplatelet therapy is continued. Predictors of bleeding on antiplatelets and/or antithrombotics therapy have been identified, but formulation and validation of a GI bleeding index for stratification of risk in individual patients is suggested. Reversal of anticoagulation in bleeding patients is associated with a low risk of thromboembolic events and permits the performance of diagnostic and therapeutic endoscopy. Proton-pump inhibitors and H. pylori eradication reduce the risk of rebleeding in those with acid-related disease.
    Journal of clinical gastroenterology 08/2008; 43(1):5-12. · 2.21 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Functional dyspepsia is a prevalent condition associated with diminished quality of life (QoL) and high economic burden. To study the efficacy of a combination of flupenthixol and melitracen (F + M) with anxiolytic and antidepressant properties in functional dyspepsia using a randomized controlled cross-over design. Patients met the Rome III criteria for functional dyspepsia and a validated questionnaire was used to exclude those with anxiety or depression. Moreover, patients had to have failed a trial of acid-suppressive therapy and Helicobacter pylori eradication when positive. End points included subjective global symptom relief and QoL assessed by the Nepean Dyspepsia Index (NDI). Twenty-five patients (14 females, 11 males; mean age = 34.3 +/- 9.9 years) were enrolled and 24 completed the 8-week study. There was a significant improvement in subjective global symptom relief with F + M vs. placebo (ITT: 73.9% vs. 26.1%, P = 0.001) and a significant drop in the NDI score vs. placebo (ITT: -9.0 +/- 11.9 vs. -2.4 +/- 8.9, P = 0.03). No difference was noted whether the initial treatment was F + M or placebo. No significant side effects were noted. A combination of F and M is safe and effective in the short-term treatment of functional dyspepsia. F + M is associated with significant improvement in QoL independent of the presence of anxiety or depression.
    Alimentary Pharmacology & Therapeutics 07/2008; 27(11):1148-55. · 4.55 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Problems of compliance, quality, and safety of colon preparation regimens have prompted continued investigation with alternative forms of cleansing. To evaluate the efficacy of tegaserod as an adjunct to a polyethylene glycol electrolyte solution (PEG-E), given as a whole dose or split dose, in colonoscopy preparation. Randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind trial. A single university-based hospital. Patients who were undergoing elective colonoscopy. A 4-arm randomization scheme that compared tegaserod with a placebo, each with whole-dose or split-dose PEG-E preparation. Efficacy of colon cleansing was the primary outcome. Secondary outcomes included adherence, tolerability, adverse effects, and patient perceptions of their preparation quality. A total of 382 patients completed the trial. Patients who received the split-dose preparation had significantly better colon cleansing than those who received the whole-dose preparation (88.9% vs 42.6%, P < .001). The addition of tegaserod did not significantly improve the overall colonoscopy preparation quality compared with a placebo. However, there were fewer poor preparations in the whole-dose PEG-E group (12.4% vs 1.1%, P = .002, Bonferroni correction removes significance) and more excellent preparations in the split-dose group (53.3% vs 38.3%, P = .035, Bonferroni correction removes significance) in favor of tegaserod. Interobserver and intraobserver variability analysis showed substantial agreement among endoscopists. Adherence was significantly lower in the whole-dose group versus the split-dose PEG-E group (68.8% vs 91%, P < .001), independent of the use of tegaserod. Adverse effects were not different between study groups. A 4-arm randomization and the single-center nature of the study. Tegaserod has a marginal effect on the quality of colonoscopy preparation when used as an adjuvant to PEG-E. The split-dose PEG-E was superior to the whole-dose PEG-E and resulted in better colon cleansing, adherence, and tolerance.
    Gastrointestinal endoscopy 06/2008; 68(2):294-300; quiz 334, 336. · 6.71 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Conscious sedation is usually achieved during EGD by a combination of intravenous benzodiazepines and opiates; however, these have potential serious adverse effects. The addition of topical oropharyngeal anesthetics such as lidocaine may be useful. Recent data suggest that the administration of topical lidocaine by means of a lollipop is effective for endotracheal intubation and bronchoscopy. Our purpose was to evaluate the safety and efficacy of a lidocaine lollipop as single-agent anesthesia for EGD and to determine whether its use reduces the need for intravenous sedatives and analgesics. Single-blinded, randomized, prospective study. University hospital. 50 patients undergoing diagnostic EGD. Patients were randomized to either lidocaine lollipop or lidocaine spray. Intravenous meperidine and midazolam were administered during the procedure as needed. The success and safety of local anesthesia by lidocaine lollipop in addition to the need for intravenous sedation. Patients were equally randomized between the lollipop and the spray groups. The lollipop group had less gag reflex, accommodated scope introduction more, and tolerated the procedure better. Thirty-two percent of patients receiving the lollipop required sedation compared with 96% of patients in the spray group (P < .001). The majority in the lollipop group were satisfied with their mode of anesthesia compared with the spray group. Lidocaine lollipop is a promising form of local oropharyngeal anesthesia for EGD. Its use resulted in sparing the use of intravenous sedation. It is well tolerated and safe and may be particularly important in the elderly, patients with comorbidities, and office-based endoscopy.
    Gastrointestinal Endoscopy 11/2007; 66(4):786-93. · 5.21 Impact Factor
  • Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology 09/2007; 41(7):723-4. · 3.20 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: An abstract is unavailable. This article is available as HTML full text and PDF.
    Southern Medical Journal 08/2007; 100(7):726-7. · 0.92 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The objectives of this study were to determine the prevalence and incidence of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) in a representative Lebanese cohort and to describe practice prevalence trends, disease characteristics, and impact on quality of life (QoL) of IBD patients in Lebanon. All of a university-based health program's 2000-2004 computerized records that listed a diagnosis of Crohn's disease (CD) or ulcerative colitis (UC) were reviewed. In addition, data on patients seen in the gastroenterology clinics and data from the IBD registry at the American University of Beirut Medical Center (AUBMC) from the same period were analyzed. Of 15,073 insured individuals, 8 had a diagnosis of CD and 16 of UC, giving an age-adjusted prevalence of 53.1 per 100,000 people for CD and 106.2 per 100,000 people for UC. The mean age at diagnosis for patients with CD and UC was 28.8 +/- 11.1 and 32.0 +/- 13.4 years, respectively, and there was a slight female predominance. The mean annual incidence was 4.1 per 100,000 people for UC and 1.4 per 100,000 people for CD (range, 0-6.9/100,000 for both). Of the 10,383 patients seen in the gastroenterology clinic from 2000 to 2004, 251 (2.4%) had IBD (142 UC, 100 CD, and 9 indeterminate), a ratio that trended upward over time (range, 1.8%-2.7%). The median IBD Quality-of-Life (IBDQ) questionnaire score was 124.9 +/- 30.5, indicating that the disease had a moderately severe impact on QoL. The prevalence of IBD in this representative Lebanese cohort falls in the intermediate range of that reported for white populations in Europe and North America. Future studies are needed to examine local risk factors, disease genotypes and phenotypes, and epidemiologic time trends. The psychosocial burden of IBD in Lebanon appears significant.
    Inflammatory Bowel Diseases 05/2007; 13(4):475-80. · 5.12 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The posterior surface of the proximal transverse colon and the anterior surface of the descending duodenum are intimately related, predisposing to fistulization in this area. We herein describe a rare case of benign duodenocolic fistula secondary to Crohn's disease. We emphasize the clinical presentation with fecaloid vomiting, as well as the establishment of the diagnosis by endoscopy, which are both extremely rare. The presence of a colonic stricture supports the hypothesis that the disease started in the colon rather than in the duodenum, and mandates surgical rather than medical therapy. Our case illustrates the possibility of coloduodenal fistula in patients with long-standing Crohn's disease, which should be considered in patients presenting with fecaloid vomiting, abdominal pain, and weight loss.
    Digestive Diseases and Sciences 02/2007; 52(1):59-63. · 2.26 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of this study is to determine the prevalence of heterotopic gastric mucosa in the proximal esophagus (HGMPE) and whether thorough endoscopic search may influence such prevalence. Heterotopic gastric mucosa in the esophagus (sometimes known as inlet patch) refers to a discrete area of gastric mucosa, with a spherical or ellipsoid configuration, that is typically located in the proximal esophagus. The prevalence of endoscopically diagnosed HGMPE varies from 0.1% to 10%. Endoscopic detection may be difficult as HGMPE is often located at or just below the upper esophageal sphincter. It might be associated with severe complications such as bleeding, perforation, fistula, and stricture formation, in addition to the development of adenocarcinoma. During a 2-year period, 455 consecutive patients with various gastrointestinal complaints underwent esophagogastroduodenoscopy by a single endoscopist (group 1). This endoscopist paid special attention to detecting HGMPE by thoroughly examining the proximal esophagus upon withdrawal of the endoscope. During the same period of time, endoscopy reports of 472 patients who underwent esophagogastroduodenoscopy in the same hospital by 3 other endoscopists were retrospectively reviewed (group 2). These endoscopists were aware of the existence of the HGMPE and reported that the presence of HGMPE would be included as an endoscopic finding in their reports. In the first group, HGMPE was identified in 12 out of 455 patients (2.6%). Whereas in the second group, only 2 out of 472 patients (0.4%) had reports identifying HGMPE (P<0.01). Endoscopic detection of HGMPE is influenced by the endoscopist's thorough search of this entity, and thus, more time devoted to such a search may lead to higher detection rates.
    Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology 01/2007; 41(5):468-71. · 3.20 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To investigate the prevalence of Helicobacter pylori infection in Lebanon and the association between virulence factors (cytotoxin-associated gene A and vacuolating cytotoxin gene A), ABO blood groups, and disease phenotype. One hundred and thirty symptomatic patients with H. pylori-associated endoscopic findings and 104 healthy male donors (age range 18-55) were evaluated. Both, patients and donors underwent ABO blood typing and Western blot for cytotoxin-associated gene A and vacuolating cytotoxin gene A. The prevalence of H. pylori infection in healthy donors is 68.3%. Type I (cytotoxin-associated gene A- and vacuolating cytotoxin gene A-positive) was the predominant phenotype in all groups, though significantly less common in the asymptomatic population (46.5%) than in patients with benign disease (71.4%, p<0.01) or malignancy (71.6%, p<0.05). Type II (cytotoxin-associated gene A- and vacuolating cytotoxin gene A-negative) and vacuolating cytotoxin gene A-only strains were more common in the asymptomatic cohort. Overall, 35.2% of asymptomatic individuals and 10.8% of patients with benign disease were cytotoxin-associated gene A-negative (p<0.01). There was no significant association between immunoserotypes, ABO groups or benign gastroduodenal disease. All gastric malignancies (lymphoma and adenocarcinoma) were cytotoxin-associated gene A-positive but this was not significantly different from patients with benign disease. We found a higher prevalence of blood group A in patients with gastric malignancy than in the general population [47.6% versus 25%, p=0.037; RR=2.73 (1.04-7.16; 95% CI)]. The seroprevalence of H. pylori is moderately high in Lebanon. Phenotypic classification identifies a higher prevalence of Type I in symptomatic patients. A significant relationship between infection with a cytotoxin-associated gene A-positive strain in blood type A patients and the risk of gastric malignancy was noted.
    Digestive and Liver Disease 12/2006; 38(11):829-33. · 3.16 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To evaluate the efficacy of a 7-day regimen of gatifloxacin (400 mg daily), amoxicillin (1 g twice a day), and rabeprazole (20 mg twice a day) in the secondary eradication of Helicobacter pylori infection. Eligible patients with persistent infection following one or more conventional clarithromycin-containing triple therapies were enrolled in this open-label trial. Eradication of infection was documented by (14)C-urea breath test a minimum of 4 weeks after therapy and 2 weeks off any acid suppressive therapy. Culture of H. pylori and in vitro susceptibility testing to amoxicillin, clarithromycin, and gatifloxacin was done in cases of failed eradication. A total of 45 patients (22 females:23 males; mean age 44.5 +/- 13 years) were enrolled. Eradication occurred in 38 patients [both per-protocol (PP) and intention-to-treat analysis: 84.4%; 95% CI: 74-95%]. No significant adverse effects were reported. In vitro susceptibility testing showed no secondary resistance to gatifloxacin or amoxicillin in any of the seven nonresponders. Smoking, age, and sex were not predictors of potential eradication failure. A 7-day regimen of gatifloxacin, rabeprazole, and amoxicillin is effective after failed eradication therapy for H. pylori and does not appear to result in secondary resistance. This combination is simple, well tolerated, and may lead to higher compliance and lower costs.
    Helicobacter 09/2006; 11(4):231-6. · 3.51 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To study the epidemiology of HCC in Lebanon and prognostic factors predictive of early mortality. An observational follow-up cohort study of HCC cases diagnosed over a five-year period was carried out. Multivariate analysis was conducted to identify prognostic factors in comparison to Cancer of the Liver Italian Program (CLIP) score. Multiple variables including the etiology of underlying liver disease, the demographic characteristics of patients, and the severity of liver disease evaluated by the Child-Pugh score were studied. Tumor parameters included the time of diagnosis of HCC, alpha-fetoprotein level, number and size of nodules, presence of portal vein thrombosis, and treatment modalities. Death or loss of follow-up was considered as an end-point event. Ninety-two patients (mean 60.5 +/- 22.3 years) were included. Etiology of underlying disease was hepatitis B, C, and alcohol in 67%, 20%, and 23.5% respectively. Child-Pugh class at diagnosis was A, B, and C in 34.8%, 39.3% and 25.8% respectively. Overall survival was 44.8%, 32.8% and 17.6% at 1, 2 and 3 years respectively (mean F/U 40.2 +/- 23.5 mo). Multivariate analysis identified three predictors of early mortality (< 6 mo): bilirubin > 3.2 mg/dL (P < 0.01), HCC as first presentation of liver disease (P = 0.035), and creatinine > 1 mg/dL (P = 0.017). A score based on these variables outperformed the CLIP score by Cox proportional hazard. ROC curve showed both models to be equivalent and moderately accurate. HBV is the leading cause of HCC in Lebanon. Independent predictors of early mortality are elevated bilirubin, creatinine and HCC as first manifestation of disease. Prospective validation of a score based on these clinical parameters in predicting short-term survival is needed.
    World Journal of Gastroenterology 06/2006; 12(22):3575-80. · 2.55 Impact Factor
  • E Aoun, H Abdul-Baki, Z Berro, A I Sharara
    Digestive and Liver Disease 03/2006; 38(2):150-1. · 3.16 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To study the efficacy of rifaximin, a nonabsorbable antibiotic, in relieving chronic functional symptoms of bloating and flatulence. Randomized double-blind placebo-controlled trial consisting of three 10-day phases: baseline (phase 1), treatment with rifaximin 400 mg b.i.d. or placebo (phase 2), and post-treatment period (phase 3). Primary efficacy variable was subjective global symptom relief at the end of each phase. A symptom score was calculated from a symptom diary. Lactulose H2-breath test (LHBT) was performed at baseline and end of study. One hundred and twenty-four patients were enrolled (63 rifaximin and 61 placebo). Baseline characteristics were comparable and none had an abnormal baseline LHBT. Rome II criteria were met in 58.7% and 54.1%, respectively. At the end of phase 2, there was a significant difference in global symptom relief with rifaximin versus placebo (41.3% vs 22.9%, p = 0.03). This improvement was maintained at the end of phase 3 (28.6% vs 11.5%, p = 0.02). Mean cumulative and bloating-specific scores dropped significantly in the rifaximin group (p < 0.05). Among patients with IBS, a favorable response to rifaximin was noted (40.5% vs 18.2%; p = 0.04) persisting by the end of phase 3 (27% vs 9.1%; p = 0.05). H2-breath excretion dropped significantly among rifaximin responders and correlated with improvement in bloating and overall symptom scores (p = 0.01). No adverse events were reported. Rifaximin is a safe and effective treatment for abdominal bloating and flatulence, including in IBS patients. Symptom improvement correlates with reduction in H2-breath excretion. Future trials are needed to examine the efficacy of long-term or cyclic rifaximin in functional colonic disorders.
    The American Journal of Gastroenterology 02/2006; 101(2):326-33. · 7.55 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Colonoscopy preparation regimens are poorly tolerated, requiring the use of a large volume of an unpalatable solution and diet restriction for adequate cleansing. The aim of this study was to compare the efficacy of two regimens of bowel preparation before colonoscopy: a whole dose of polyethylene glycol electrolyte solution (PEG-E), with diet restriction vs. a split dose with no diet restriction. A total of 141 patients (ages 20-84 years, 81 men) were randomly assigned to receive either 4 L PEG-E, along with a liquid diet the day before colonoscopy (Group A) or 2 L PEG-E with a regular diet the day before colonoscopy followed by another 2 L PEG-E on the day of the procedure (Group B). The quality of the preparation was graded by the endoscopist (poor to excellent), who was blinded to the type of preparation. Tolerability of the assigned preparation and adverse effects were recorded by an independent investigator by using a questionnaire administered before colonoscopy. Intra- and interobserver variability was studied by using randomly chosen videotapes of colonoscopies performed as part of the study. There were 73 patients in Group A and 68 patients in Group B. The quality of the preparation was significantly better in Group B ( p = 0.011). The tolerability of the preparation regimen was not different overall between study groups in terms of side effects (except for bloating, which was more frequent in Group B, p = 0.039) or willingness to repeat the preparation. There was a nonsignificant trend toward improved adherence to the assigned preparation in favor of Group B ( p = 0.062). Inter- and intraobserver variability analysis showed good to excellent correlation among endoscopists. Colonic preparation with split-dose PEG-E and no dietary restriction provides better quality colon cleansing than whole-dose preparation, with no significant impact on patient tolerability and side effects.
    Gastrointestinal Endoscopy 09/2005; 62(2):213-8. · 5.21 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The role of antibiotic prophylaxis in preventing post-operative complications in patients undergoing elective colorectal surgery is well established. Despite evidence that a single-dose prophylaxis is sufficient, the duration of antibiotic use in clinical practice is highly variable and surveys have identified persistent patterns of antibiotic abuse in elective colorectal surgery. We conducted a retrospective review of all patients who underwent elective colorectal surgery between 1998 and 2002 at the American University of Beirut Medical Center. A survey among general surgeons in Lebanon was also performed to investigate the pattern of antibiotic prophylaxis used in such cases. The MEDLINE database (1966-2004) was searched for English-language articles and abstracts on antimicrobial use in elective colorectal surgery. Papers cited in relevant primary articles were also reviewed. Data were extracted and reviewed by all authors. Two hundred and eleven matching patient-records were identified. A triple regimen including metronidazole, ampicillin and an aminoglycoside was the most commonly used preoperative prophylactic method. Patients received post-operative antibiotics for a mean of 6.66+/-2.62 days. The mean duration of post-operative antibiotic prophylaxis used by the interviewed surgeons was 4.31+/-1.08 days. Our study confirms that even when strong evidence exists, surgeons fail to adhere to antibiotic prophylaxis guidelines. This pattern is not unique to Lebanon but is shared to a large extent by surgeons around the world. Adherence to published guidelines and improved education of surgeons are essential to the delivery of cost-effective medical practice.
    International Journal of Surgery (London, England) 02/2005; 3(1):69-74. · 1.44 Impact Factor