Shu-Fang Chen

Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, T’ai-pei, Taipei, Taiwan

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Publications (26)43.3 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Objectives. This study investigated serum thiobarbituric acid-reactive substances (TBARS) and free thiol levels in different subtypes of acute ischemic stroke (AIS) and evaluated their association with clinical outcomes. Methods. This prospective study evaluated 100 AIS patients, including 75 with small-vessel and 25 with large-vessel diseases. Serum oxidative stress (TBARS) and antioxidant (thiol) were determined within 48 hours and days 7 and 30 after stroke. For comparison, 80 age- and sex-matched participants were evaluated as controls. Results. Serum TBARS was significantly higher and free thiol was lower in stroke patients than in the controls on days 1 and 7 after AIS. The level of free thiol was significantly lower in the large-vessel disease than in the small-vessel disease on day 7 after stroke. Using the stepwise logistic regression model for potential variables, only stroke subtype, NIHSS score, and serum TBARS level were independently associated with three-month outcome. Higher TBARS and lower thiol levels in the acute phase of stroke were associated with poor outcome. Conclusions. Patients with large-vessel disease have higher oxidative stress but lower antioxidant defense compared to those with small-vessel disease after AIS. Serum TBARS level at the acute phase of stroke is a potential predictor for three-month outcome.
    BioMed Research International 01/2014; 2014:256879. · 2.88 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The clinical and laboratory characteristics of non-cephalosporin-susceptible (non-CS) glucose non-fermentative Gram-negative (G(-)) infections in adults with postneurosurgical meningitis are rarely examined solely in the literature. The data of 28 post-neurosurgical adults meningitis with glucose non-fermentative G(-) infections, collected during a study period of 5 years (2006-2010), were reviewed. The clinical and laboratory data between the non-cephalosporin-susceptible groups and the cephalosporin-susceptible groups were compared. A total of 30 G(-) strains were collected from the 28 enrolled cases. Among the implicated glucose non-fermentative G(-) strains, 18 strains, belonging to 17 cases, were non-CS. Among the 18 non-cephalosporin-susceptible strains, Acinetobacter spp. (39%, 7/18) was the most common, followed by Pseudomonas spp. (22%, 4/18), Stenotrophomonas maltophilia (22%, 4/18) and Elizabethkingia meningoseptica (11%, 2/18). With a comparative analysis, there were no significant difference between the non-cephalosporin-susceptible and cephalosporin-susceptible glucose non-fermentative G(-) groups. The clinical and laboratory data were also of no statistical significance between the fatal (n=4) and non-fatal (n=13) non-cephalosporin-susceptible groups. Sixty percent (18/30) of implicated glucose non-fermentative G(-) strains of post-NS meningitis in adults are non-cephalosporin-susceptible. Among the non-cephalosporin-susceptible glucose non-fermentative G(-) strains, Acinetobacter spp., Pseudomonas spp., S. maltophilia and E. meningoseptica are the commonly implicated pathogens, and their emergence in this specific group of meningitis has caused a therapeutic dilemma. The clinical manifestations of non-cephalosporin-susceptible glucose non-fermentative G(-) meningitis were not unique; therefore, only bacterial culture and antimicrobial susceptibility test are the methods for identification confirmation.
    Clinical neurology and neurosurgery 11/2013; · 1.30 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to determine the effectiveness of using Tc-sestamibi thigh SPECT/CT imaging for evaluating myopathy in cerebrotendinous xanthomatosis (CTX). Four genetically proven CTX patients (Family I, Cases I-1 and I-2; Family II, Cases II-1 and II-2) were included. They all underwent muscle biopsies for histopathologic and ultrastructural studies. Immunohistochemical staining for vinculin expression was also performed. Tc-sestamibi thigh SPECT/CT imaging was conducted on all 4 CTX patients, and both visual interpretation and muscle-to-background (M/B) ratio count were applied for assessment. Correlation analysis of the imaging findings and results of the ultrastructural and immunohistochemical studies was done. In the Tc-sestamibi thigh SPECT/CT imaging study, all 4 CTX cases had abnormal scores of visual interpretation and M/B ratios. The ultrastructural features of the skeletal muscle of the 4 CTX cases showed mitochondrial and membrane system abnormalities, with increased depositions of metabolites. They also had abnormal increases in vinculin expression after immunohistochemical staining of the skeletal muscle. This is the first report on the use of Tc-sestamibi thigh SPECT/CT imaging to assess the mitochondrial status of CTX. The imaging findings may have a correlation with the ultrastructural and immunohistochemical findings on skeletal muscle. Although the Tc-sestamibi thigh SPECT/CT imaging is not specific for CTX, this noninvasive in vivo assessment can be an important tool for the detection and follow-up study of skeletal muscle involvement in CTX.
    Clinical nuclear medicine 08/2013; · 3.92 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To compare the value of ultrasonography for diagnosing carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) in patients with and without diabetes mellitus (DM). Eighty non-DM and 40 DM patients with electromyography-confirmed CTS were assessed and underwent high-resolution ultrasonography of the wrists. Cross-sectional area (CSA) and flattening ratio (FR) of the median nerve were measured at the carpal tunnel outlet (D) and wrist crease (W). The 80 non-DM and 40 DM patients had 81 and 59 CTS-hands, respectively. The CSA_D and CSA_W were significantly larger in the CTS-hands and DM-CTS-hands compared to the normal control (p < 0.001). However, there is no difference of CSA_D and CSA_W between DM and non-DM CTS patients. Receiver operating characteristics [ROC] curve analysis revealed that CSA_W >=13 mm2 was the most powerful predictor of CTS in DM (area under curve [AUC] = 0.72; sensitivity 72.9%, specificity 61.9%) and non-DM (AUC = 0.72; sensitivity 78.5%, specificity 53.2%) patients. The CSA positively correlated with the distal motor latency of the median compound motor action potential (CMAP), distal sensory latency of the median sensory nerve action potential (SNAP), and latency of the median F wave, but negatively correlated with the amplitude of the median CMAP, amplitude of the median SNAP, and sensory NCV of the median nerve. Stepwise logistic regression revealed that CSA_W (OR 1.21, 95% CI 1.07-1.38; p = 0.003) was independently associated with CTS in DM patients and any 1 mm2 increase in CSA_W increased the rate of CTS by 28%. The CSA of the median nerve at the outlet and wrist crease are significantly larger in CTS hands in both DM and non-DM patients compared to normal hands. The CSA of the median nerve by ultrasonography may be a diagnostic tool for evaluating CTS in DM and non-DM patients.
    BMC Neurology 06/2013; 13(1):65. · 2.56 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We reviewed retrospectively the data for adult patients with bacterial meningitis over a period of 10.5 years in our hospital. The clinical characteristics and laboratory data of the 21 cases (52 strains) of mixed infection were analyzed. Two hundred and fifteen cases of single pathogen adult bacterial meningitis (ABM) were also included for comparison. Post-neurosurgical type of ABM was presented in 86% of the mixed infection group. Brain abscess was found in three patients. Fourteen patients survived and seven cases died. The analysis showed a statistical significance for the mixed infection group having a higher rate of nosocomially-acquired, post-neurosurgical condition, hydrocephalus, and lower level of cerebrospinal fluid white cell count, protein and lactate than the single pathogen group. Logistic regression analysis showed the independent factor of "hydrocephalus" (p = 0.002). Presence of hydrocephalus is a significant neuroimaging feature when compared with the single pathogen group. As compared with the previous study results of mixed infection in ABM, the present study showed a change of pathogens implicated of increasing Pseudomonas spp. and Acinetobacter spp. infections, and an emergence of anaerobic pathogens. All these changes deserve special attention because of the need for an appropriate choice of empirical antibiotics and choice of culture method.
    The Kaohsiung journal of medical sciences 10/2012; 28(10):531-7. · 0.50 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: INTRODUCTION: Baroreflex failure has been reported as a late sequalum of neck radiotherapy. In this study we investigated cardiovascular autonomic function in patients after neck radiotherapy to determine predictive factors associated with outcome. METHODS: Eighty-nine patients with nasopharyngeal carcinoma were evaluated ≥6 months after radiotherapy for cardiovascular autonomic function and compared with 48 control subjects. Inflammatory markers and carotid intima-media thickness were also assessed. RESULTS: Autonomic parameters of heart rate response to deep breathing and Valsalva ratio were significantly lower in the patient group. Cardiovascular autonomic impairment was generally mild with relative sparing of the efferent cardiovagal pathway. By univariate and multivariate analyses, the time after radiotherapy and C-reactive protein level were significantly associated with the degree of cardiovascular autonomic dysfunction. CONCLUSIONS: Radiation-induced cardiovascular autonomic impairment is a dynamic and progressive process that occurs long after radiotherapy. Chronic inflammation plays a major role in this process. Muscle Nerve, 2013.
    Muscle & Nerve 07/2012; · 2.31 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Using high-resolution ultrasonography (US) to measure the median nerve cross-sectional areas (CSAs) such as in the "inching test" conducted in nerve conduction studies is a valuable tool to assess carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS). However, using this US measurement method to assess the median nerve CSA in diabetic patients with CTS has rarely been reported. Therefore, we used this US measurement method in this study to measure median nerve CSAs and to compare the CSAs of idiopathic, diabetic and diabetic polyneuropathy (DPN) patients with CTS. METHODS: 124 hands belonging to 89 participants were included and assigned into four groups: control (32), idiopathic (38), diabetic (38) and DPN (16) CTS. In the latter two groups, only patients with mild and moderately severity CTS were included. The median nerve CSAs were measured at 8 points marked as i4, i3, i2, i1, w, o1, o2, and 03 in the inching test. The measured CSAs in each group of participants were compared. RESULTS: Compared with the CSAs of the control group, enlarged CSAs were found in the idiopathic, diabetic and DPN CTS groups. The CSAs were larger at i4, i3 and i2 in the diabetic CTS group compared to the idiopathic CTS group. The CSAs measured at the i1 and w levels of the DPN CTS group were smaller than those of the diabetic CTS group. In the diabetic CTS group, the cut-off values of CSAs measured at the inlet, wrist crease, and outlet were 15.3 mm2, 13.4 mm2 and 10.0 mm2, respectively, and 14.0 mm2, 12.5 mm2 and 10.5 mm2, respectively, in the DPN CTS group. CONCLUSIONS: Compared with the median nerve CSAs of the control and idiopathic CTS groups, the median nerve CSAs of the diabetic patients with CTS were significantly enlarged. However, compared with the diabetic CTS group, the CSAs were significantly smaller in the DPN CTS group. This US 8-point measurement method can be of value as an important complementary tool for CTS studies and diagnosis among diabetic patients.
    BMC Medical Imaging 07/2012; 12(1):15. · 1.09 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Q-Sweat is a model used for evaluating the post-ganglionic sudomotor function by assessing sweat response. This study aimed to establish the normative database of Q-Sweat test among Chinese individuals since this type of information is currently lacking. One hundred and fifty (150) healthy volunteers, 76 men and 74 women with age range of 22-76 years were included. Skin temperature and sweat onset latency measured at the four sites (i.e., the forearm, proximal leg, distal leg, and the foot) did not significantly correlate with age, gender, body height (BH), body weight (BW), and body mass index (BMI) but the total sweat volume measured in all four sites significantly correlated with sex, BH, and BW. Except for the distal leg, the total sweat volume measured at the other three sites had a significant correlation with BMI. In terms of gender, men had larger total sweat volume, with median differences at the forearm, proximal leg, distal leg, and foot of 0.591 μl, 0.693 μl, 0.696 μl, and 0.358 μl, respectively. Regarding BW difference (≥62 and < 62 Kg), those with BW ≥62 Kg had larger total sweat volume. Median differences at the forearm, proximal leg, distal leg, and foot were 0.538 μl, 0.744 μl, 0.695 μl, and 0.338 μl, respectively. There was an uneven distribution of male and female participants in the two BW groups. In all conditions, the total sweat volume recorded at the foot site was the smallest. This is the first report to show the normative database of sweat response in Chinese participants evaluated using Q-Sweat device. This normative database can help guide further research on post-ganglionic sudomotor or related clinical practice involving a Chinese population.
    BMC Neuroscience 06/2012; 13:62. · 3.00 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To examine the clinical characteristics of bacterial meningitis in elderly patients. 261 patients with adult bacterial meningitis (ABM), collected during a study period of 11 years (2000-2010), were included for study. Among them, 87 patients aged ≥ 65 years and were classified as the elderly group. The clinical and laboratory characteristics and prognostic factors were analyzed, and a clinical comparison with those of non-elderly ABM patients was also made. The 87 elderly ABM patients were composed of 53 males and 34 females, aged 65-87 years old (median = 71 years). Diabetes mellitus (DM) was the most common underlying condition (34%), followed by end stage renal disease (7%), alcoholism (4%) and malignancies (4%). Fever was the most common clinical manifestation (86%), followed by altered consciousness (62%), leukocytosis (53%), hydrocephalus (38%), seizure (30%), bacteremia (21%) and shock (11%). Thirty-nine of these 87 elderly ABM patients had spontaneous infection, while the other 48 had post-neurosurgical infection. Forty-four patients contracted ABM in a community-acquired state, while the other 43, a nosocomial state. The therapeutic results of the 87 elderly ABM patients were that 34 patients expired and 53 patients survived. The comparative results of the clinical and laboratory characteristics between the elderly and non-elderly ABM patients showed that only peripheral blood leukocytosis was significant. Presence of shock and seizure were significant prognostic factors of elderly ABM patients. Elderly ABM patients accounted for 34.8% of the overall ABM cases, and this relatively high incidence rate may signify the future burden of ABM in the elderly population in Taiwan. The relative frequency of implicated pathogens of elderly ABM is similar to that of non-elderly ABM. Compared with non-elderly patients, the elderly ABM patients have a significantly lower incidence of peripheral blood leukocytosis. The mortality rate of elderly ABM remains high, and the presence of shock and seizures are important prognostic factors.
    BMC Geriatrics 12/2011; 11:91. · 2.34 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Incremental palmar stimulation of the median nerve sensory conduction at the wrist, the "inching test", provides an assessment with reference to segments proximal and distal to the entrapment. This study used high-resolution ultrasonography (US) to measure the median nerve's cross-section areas (CSAs) like the "inching test" and to correlate with the nerve conduction study (NCS) severity and duration of carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS). Two hundred and twelve (212) "CTS-hands" from 135 CTS patients and 50 asymptomatic hands ("A-hands") from 25 control individuals were enrolled. The median nerve CSAs were measured at the 8-point marked as i4, i3, i2, i1, w, o1, o2, and 03 in inching test. The NCS severities were classified into six groups based on motor and sensory responses (i.e., negative, minimal, mild, moderate, severe, and extreme). Results of US studies were compared in terms of NCS severity and duration of clinical CTS symptoms. There was significantly larger CSA of the NCS negative group of "CTS-hands" than of "A-hands". The cut-off values of the CSAs of the NCS negative CTS group were 12.5 mm2, 11.5 mm2 and 10.1 mm2 at the inlet, wrist crease, and outlet, respectively. Of the 212 "CTS-hands", 32 were NCS negative while 40 had minimal, 43 mild, 85 moderate, 10 severe, and two extreme NCS severities. The CSAs of "CTS-hands" positively correlated with different NCS severities and with the duration of CTS symptoms. By duration of clinical symptoms, 12 of the 212 "CTS-hands" were in the 1 month group; 82 in >1 month and ≤ 12 months group, and 118 in >12 months group. In "inching test", segments i4-i3 and i3-i2 were the most common "positive-site". The corresponding CSAs measured at i4 and i3, but not at i2, were significantly larger than those measured at points that were not "positive-site". Using the 8-point measurement of the median nerve CSA from inlet to outlet similar to the "inching test" has positive correlations with NCS severity and duration of CTS clinical symptoms, and can provide more information on anatomic changes. Combined NCS and US studies using the 8-point measurement may have a higher positive rate than NCS alone for diagnosing CTS.
    BMC Medical Imaging 12/2011; 11:22. · 1.09 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Nontuberculous bacterial spinal epidural abscess (SEA) is a serious infectious disease of spines. Despite proper management, SEA remains a disease of high morbidity. The epidemiological data in southern Taiwan is still lacking. We analyzed the clinical features, laboratory data, magnetic resonance imaging findings, and therapeutic results of 45 bacterial SEA patients, collected during a study period of six years (2003- 2008). The 45 adult SEA patients, 32 were men and 13 women, aged 17-81 years (mean = 62 years). Thoracic and lumbosacral spines were the most commonly affected segments. Staphylococcus aureus was the most commonly implicated pathogen, accounting for infections in 67% (29/43) of the culture-proven cases, and 41% (12/29) of the S. aureus strains were oxacillin resistant. Gram-negative pathogens were implicated in 30% (13/43) of the culture-proven cases. Of the 45 patients, 19 underwent antibiotic treatment alone and 26 underwent medical and surgical treatments. The therapeutic results showed that 28 patients had a good prognosis and 17 had a poor prognosis. The significant prognostic factors included higher age, presence of diabetes mellitus and chronic heart disease, and initial presentation of altered consciousness. S. aureus was the most commonly implicated pathogen of adult SEA, and most S. aureus strains were oxacillin resistant. A relatively high incidence of Gram-negative infection was observed in this study. The epidemiological characteristics of the implicated pathogens must receive special consideration when selecting the empirical antibiotics. Despite adequate management, many adults with bacterial SEA had a high incidence of poor prognosis.
    Acta neurologica Taiwanica 06/2011; 20(2):107-13.
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    ABSTRACT: Muscle weakness has been repeatedly reported in patients with carbon monoxide (CO) intoxication. In animal models, CO intoxication has been linked with mitochondrial electron transport dysfunction. The objectives of the present study were to use Tc-99m sestamibi thigh single-photon emission computed tomography/computed tomography (SPECT/CT) to evaluate the mitochondrial status in patients with CO intoxication, correlate this with clinical parameters, and compare with age-matched controls. A total of 25 patients with delayed sequelae after CO intoxication (range: 1-60 months) and 17 sex- and age-matched healthy volunteers underwent Tc-99m sestamibi thigh SPECT/CT. Cognitive evaluation and muscle power according to medical research council (MRC) grading were collected. Both visual scoring from planar images and automatic volumetric analysis were used to rate the Tc-99m sestamibi uptake level. The visual scores showed that 14 patients (56.0%) were scored as moderate-to-severe decrement. Volumetric analysis showed that a significant Tc99m-sestamibi uptake decrement was found in the CO intoxication group as compared with the controls, and 16 patients (64.0%) had uptakes below 1 standard deviation of the control group. In the CO group, the muscle power but not the cognitive evaluation correlated with Tc-99m sestamibi uptake in muscles. The decrement of muscle Tc99m-sestamibi uptake was related to mitochondria swelling, increased mitochondrial numbers, and type II muscle atrophy in 1 patient. In this study, we demonstrated that patients with CO intoxication sustained defective mitochondrial metabolism in skeletal muscles as revealed by a decrement in Tc-99m sestamibi uptake either by visual or semiquantification of thigh SPECT/CT. Tc-99m sestamibi scanning provided noninvasive measurement of mitochondrial injury in muscles after CO intoxication and the correlation with clinical parameters was good.
    Clinical nuclear medicine 03/2011; 36(3):199-205. · 3.92 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Cerebrotendinous xanthomatosis (CTX) is a rare lipid-storage disease. Neuromuscular abnormality and autonomic system (ANS) dysfuction in CTX are rarely examined in large-scale studies in the literature. We studied the peripheral nervous system, myopathology, and autonomic system of four CTX patients and performed a literature review of the reported CTX patients with peripheral neuropathy. Four biochemically and genetically confirmed CTX patients, belonging to two families, were included for study and all received nerve conduction study (NCS), muscle biopsy for histopathologic and ultrastructural study, skin biopsy for intraepidermal nerve fiber (INEF) density measurement, autonomic testings including sympathetic skin response, R-R interval variation and head-up tilt test using an automated tilt table to record the changes of blood pressure and heart rate in different postures. The Q-Sweat test was also applied for the detection of sweat amount and onset time of response. The clinical characteristics, study methods and results of 13 studies of peripheral neuropathy in CTX patients in the literature were also recorded for analysis. The results of NCS study showed axonal sensory-motor polyneuropathy in three CTX cases and mixed axonal and demyelinating sensor-motor polyneuropathy in one. The myopathological and histopathologic studies revealed mild denervation characteristics, but the ultrastructural study revealed changes of mitochondria and the membranous system, and increased amounts of glycogen, lipofuscin and lipid deposition. The ANS study revealed different degrees of abnormalities in the applied tests and the INEF density measurement showed small fiber neuropathy in three of the four CTX patients. The literature review of peripheral neuropathy in CTX revealed different types of peripheral neuropathy, of which axonal peripheral neuropathy was the most common. Peripheral neuropathy, especially the subtype of axonal sensori-motor neuropathy, is common in patients with CTX. Evidence of lipid metabolic derangement in CTX can be reflected in ultrastructural studies of muscles. With an adequate multi-parametric evaluation, a high incidence of ANS abnormalities can be seen in this rare lipid-storage disease, and a high incidence of small fiber involvement is also reflected in the IENF density measurement of skin biopsies.
    BMC Neurology 01/2011; 11:63. · 2.56 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Erythropoietin (EPO) enhances the circulating level of endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs), which has been reported to be associated with prognostic outcome in ischemic stroke (IS) patients. The aim of this study was to evaluate the time course of circulating EPC level and the impact of EPO therapy on EPC level and clinical outcome in patients after acute IS. In total, 167 patients were prospectively randomized to receive either EPO therapy (group 1) (5,000 IU each time, subcutaneously) at 48 h and 72 h after acute IS, or serve as placebo (group 2). The circulating level of EPCs (double-stained markers: CD31/CD34 (E1), CD62E/CD34 (E2) and KDR/CD34 (E3)) was determined using flow cytometry at 48 h and on days 7 and 21 after IS. EPC level was also evaluated once in 60 healthy volunteers. Circulating EPC (E1 to E3) level at 48 h after IS was remarkably higher in patients than in control subjects (P < 0.02). At 48 h and on Day 7 after IS, EPC (E1 to E3) level did not differ between groups 1 and 2 (all P > 0.1). However, by Day 21, EPC (E1 to E3) level was significantly higher in group 1 than in group 2 (all P < 0.03). Additionally, 90-day recurrent stroke rate was notably lower in group 1 compared with group 2 (P = 0.022). Multivariate analysis demonstrated that EPO therapy (95% confidence interval (CI), 0.153 to 0.730; P = 0.006) and EPC (E3) (95% CI, 0.341 to 0.997; P = 0.049) levels were significantly and independently predictive of a reduced 90-day major adverse neurological event (MANE) (defined as recurrent stroke, National Institutes of Health Stroke scale ≥8, or death). EPO therapy significantly improved circulating EPC level and 90-day MANE. ISRCTN: ISRCTN96340690.
    Critical care (London, England) 01/2011; 15(1):R40. · 4.72 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Acute/subacute cerebral infarction (ASCI) in HIV-negative cryptococcal meningoencephalitis (CM) adults has rarely been examined by a series of MRI-based follow-up study. We studied a series of MRI follow-up study of CM adults and compared the clinical characters of those with ASCI and those without ASCI. The clinical characteristics and a series of brain MRI findings of seven CM adults with ASCI were enrolled for analysis. The clinical characteristics of another 30 HIV-negative CM adults who did not have ASCI were also included for a comparative analysis. The seven HIV-negative CM adults with ASCI were four men and three women, aged 46-78 years. Lacunar infarction was the type of ASCI, and 86% (6/7) of the ACSI were multiple infarctions distributed in both the anterior and posterior cerebrovascular territories. The seven CM patients with ASCI were significantly older and had a higher rate of DM and previous stroke than the other 30 CM adults without ASCI. They also had a higher incidence of consciousness disturbance at presentation and had a poor prognosis. ASCI was found in 18.9% (7/37) of HIV-negative CM adults. Serial MRI follow-up studies may allow a better delineation of ASCI in this specific group of infectious disease and multiple lacunar infarctions was the most common type. Older in age and presence of DM and previous stroke were the significant underlying conditions. CM patients with ASCI also had a poor therapeutic outcome.
    BMC Neurology 01/2011; 11:12. · 2.56 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To analyze the clinical characteristics and therapeutic outcome of patients with solely cerebellar bacterial brain abscess (BBA). Eight patients with solely cerebellar BBA, collected during a period of 23 years from 210 BBA patients, were included in this study. The eight patients were five men and three women, aged 5-54 years (mean, 36.6 years). Six of them were adults, one was a child, and one was an adolescent. Six patients had underlying medical/surgical problems. Of the clinical presentations, dizziness was the most common (87.5%, 7/8), followed by headache (62.5%, 5/8), altered consciousness (62.5%, 5/8), fever (50%, 4/8), ataxia (25%, 2/8), hearing impairment (12.5%, 1/8), dysarthria (12.5%, 1/8), and hemiparesis (12.5%, 1/8). The Image Severity Index (ISI) scores of these eight patients ranged from 6 to 12 points. All eight patients received both medical and surgical treatment. One patient died owing to a complication in the neurosurgical procedure and the remaining patients survived. The therapeutic outcome was quantified one month after discharge by modified Rankin scale (mRS) and the result showed six of the seven survivors had good outcomes, while the other one had a poor outcome (ataxic gait). Cerebellar BBA accounted for 3.8% (8/210) of the overall BBA. In cerebellar BBA, dizziness is a frequent symptom. Early diagnosis and a combination of antimicrobial and neurosurgical intervention is important for its treatment. The small case number is a limitation of this study; therefore, further large-scale study of cerebellar BBA is needed for better delineation of the clinical characteristics, therapeutic outcome, and prognostic factors.
    Acta neurologica Taiwanica 01/2011; 20(1):47-52.
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    ABSTRACT: Super-infection in adult bacterial meningitis (ABM) is a condition wherein the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) grows new pathogen(s) during the therapeutic course of meningitis. It is an uncommon but clinically important condition rarely examined in literature. Twenty-seven episodes of super-infection states in 21 ABM patients collected in a 9.5-year study period (January 2001 to June 2010) were evaluated. The clinical characteristics, implicated pathogens, results of antimicrobial susceptibility tests, and therapeutic outcomes were analyzed. Twenty-one patients (13 men, 8 women) aged 25-73 years (median, 45 years) had post-neurosurgical state as the preceding event and nosocomial infection. The post-neurosurgical states included spontaneous intracranial hemorrhage (ICH) with craniectomy or craniotomy with extra-ventricular drainage (EVD) or ventriculo-peritoneal shunt (VPS) in 10 patients, traumatic ICH with craniectomy or craniotomy with EVD or VPS in 6 patients, hydrocephalus s/p VPS in 2 patients, and one patient each with cerebral infarct s/p craniectomy with EVD, meningeal metastasis s/p Omaya implant, and head injury. All 21 patients had EVD and/or VP shunt and/or Omaya implant during the whole course of ABM. Recurrent fever was the most common presentation and the implicated bacterial pathogens were protean, many of which were antibiotic resistant. Most patients required adjustment of antibiotics after the pathogens were identified but even with antimicrobial therapy, 33.3% (7/21) died. Morbidity was also high among survivors. Super-infection in ABM is usually seen in patients with preceding neurosurgical event, especially insertion of an external drainage device. Repeat CSF culture is mandatory for diagnostic confirmation because most of the implicated bacterial strains are non-susceptible to common antibiotics used. Unusual pathogens like anaerobic bacteria and fungi may also appear. Despite antimicrobial therapy, prognosis remains poor.
    BMC Infectious Diseases 01/2011; 11:133. · 3.03 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Supratentorial deep-seated bacterial brain abscess (BBA) in adults is rarely examined solely in the literature. This retrospective study is conducted to examine the clinical characteristics and therapeutic outcome of this specific group of BBA. Eight adult patients with supratentorial deep-seated BBA, collected during a study period of 14 years (1994-2007), were enrolled. Their microbiological data derived from cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), blood or pus cultures, clinical features and therapeutic outcome were analyzed. The eight adult cases were six men and two women, aged 41 to 80 years (mean=61). Preceding medical conditions were found in five of these eight cases, while preceding neurosurgical event was found in one. Of the clinical presentations, hemiparesis (6) was the most common, followed by fever (5), altered consciousness (4), headache (3), septic shock (1), and seizure (1). The main locations of the BBA were the left basal ganglia in five, the left thalamus in two, and the right basal ganglia in one. Causative pathogens were found in six cases and the isolated pathogens were all cultured from CSF specimens. Positive bacteremia which grew K. pneumoniae was found in one case. Seven of these eight cases contracted the infection in a community-acquired state. Besides antibiotic treatment, seven of them received a neurosurgical intervention (stereotactic aspiration and/or ventriculoperitoneal shunt). The therapeutic result showed six cases survived and two expired. Five of the six survivors had variable degree of neurologic deficits. Besides the common clinical features of BBA, supratentorial deep-seated BBA has a high incidence of hemiparesis in the early stages of disease. Most of the involved patients have community-acquired infections and are preceded by a medical condition. Stereotactic aspiration for therapeutic and diagnostic purposes, as well as shunting surgery, is the most common neuro-surgical procedures used for treatment. But despite therapeutic efforts, high mortality and morbidity remain.
    Acta neurologica Taiwanica 09/2010; 19(3):178-83.
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    ABSTRACT: A total of 46 patients (nine post-neurosurgical, 37 spontaneous) with adult bacterial meningitis (ABM) caused by Klebsiellapneumoniae infection were included in this study. The nine patients in the post-neurosurgical K. pneumoniae ABM group (seven male, two female) had a mean age of 48.9 years. Two patients in this group also had diabetes mellitus (DM) and one had liver disease. The most common presentation of patients in post-neurosurgical K. pneumoniae ABM group was fever (nine patients), followed by altered consciousness (seven patients) and hydrocephalus (six patients). With medical and/or surgical treatment, a mortality of 22.2% (2/9) occurred. Compared to patients who had spontaneous K. pneumoniae ABM, those with the post-neurosurgical form had a lower incidence of community-acquired infection, seizure and DM, but had a higher incidence of leukocytosis, hydrocephalus, cerebrospinal fluid leak and bacterial strains with extended-spectrum beta-lactamase. Univariate analysis found these clinical differences to be statistically significant, however they were not significant on multivariate analysis. This study reveals that there are clinical differences between the post-neurosurgical and spontaneous presentations of K. pneumoniae ABM.
    Journal of Clinical Neuroscience 03/2010; 17(3):334-8. · 1.25 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The clinical characteristics of intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH) in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) patients with intracerebral metastasis (IcM) have not been reported on extensively. We compared the clinical characteristics between patients with ICH (w-ICH, 18 patients) and without ICH (wo-ICH, 24 patients) in HCC patients with IcM. Using multivariate logistic regression, only habitual alcohol consumption is a significant predictor of ICH in HCC patients with IcM (adjusted odds ratio [OR]=4.7, 95% CI=1.26-17.71, p=0.022). Patients with ICH also had lower Glasgow Coma Scale scores at the time of admission (p=0.032) and lower incidence of infratentorial metastasis (p=0.014). Using correlation analysis, only blood platelet count on admission was positively correlated with survival duration after the diagnosis of IcM in the wo-ICH group (p=0.000) but not in the w-ICH group.
    Journal of Clinical Neuroscience 02/2009; 16(3):394-8. · 1.25 Impact Factor