Dan-Tzu Lin-Tan

Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, Taipei, Taipei, Taiwan

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Publications (46)201.55 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Whether high body mass index (BMI) has an effect on progressive diabetic nephropathy in type II diabetes mellitus (DM) patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) stage 3 or 4 remains unclear. This prospective study aimed to investigate the relationship between BMI and progression of renal function deterioration in type II DM patients with CKD stage 3 or 4.A total of 105 type II DM patients with CKD stage 3 or 4 participated in this 24-month prospective observational study. Patients were divided into 3 groups according to BMI as follows: normal group, BMI of 18.5-22.9 kg/m; overweight group, BMI of 23-24.9 kg/m; and obese group, BMI of ≥25 kg/m. The primary end point was a 2-fold elevation in serum creatinine levels (measured twice with a 1-month interval) from baseline values, need for long-term dialysis, or death during the 24-month observation period.In the linear regression analysis with the stepwise method, each 1 kg/m increase in BMI led to an increase of 0.32 mL min × 1.73 m in the estimated glomerular filtration rate (95% confidence interval, CI, 0.01-0.62; P = 0.04) during the 24-month study period. Moreover, multivariate Cox regression analysis showed that compared with the obese group, the normal BMI group (hazard ratio = 2.76, 95% CI : 1.27-6; P = 0.01) achieved the primary outcome after adjusting for other factors.In this 24-month prospective observational study, we showed that BMI of ≥25 kg/m was a protective factor for renal function deterioration in type II DM patients with CKD stage 3 or 4.
    Medicine. 08/2014; 93(7):e41.
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    ABSTRACT: Malnutrition is associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular death and may cause protein-energy wasting in individuals with chronic kidney disease. A previous study demonstrated that blood cadmium levels (BCLs) were associated with malnutrition in maintenance hemodialysis (MHD) patients. However, the correlation between cadmium exposure and malnutrition remains unclear in chronic peritoneal dialysis (CPD) patients. This study examined the possible adverse effects of environmental cadmium exposure in CPD patients. A total of 301 CPD patients were enrolled and divided into 3 study groups based on the following BCL tertiles: low (<0.19 mug/L), middle (0.19-0.39 mug/L), and high (>0.39 mug/L). Demographic, hematological, biochemical, and dialysis-related data were obtained for analysis. The analysis also included values of nutritional and inflammatory markers. The BCLs of CPD patients were lower than those of MHD patients. At baseline, patients in the high BCL group were older and had a higher prevalence of diabetes mellitus but lower serum albumin, creatinine, and phosphate levels than the patients in the other 2 groups. After adjusting for potential variables, stepwise backward multiple linear regression analysis revealed that age and alanine aminotransferase levels were positively associated with logarithmic transformation of BCLs (log BCLs), while serum albumin levels were negatively associated with log BCLs in CPD patients. The log BCLs were a significant determinant (beta coefficient +/- standard error = -0.185 +/- 0.074; P = 0.013) of nutritional status and significantly associated with the presence of malnutrition (odds ratio = 2.64; 95% confidence interval: 1.07-6.48; P = 0.035) in CPD patients after adjustment for related variables. BCL is significantly associated with nutritional status and malnutrition in CPD patients. Therefore, it is important for CPD patients to avoid environmental exposure to cadmium such as through smoking and consumption of cadmium-rich foods.
    BMC Nephrology 01/2014; 15(1):17. · 1.64 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Background: Studies of the correlation between education levels and mortality in hemodialysis (HD) patients are rare. The aim of this multi-center study was to investigate the relationship between education levels and 3-year mortality rates in HD patients. Methods: A total of 935 HD patients from 3 HD centers participated in this 3-year prospective observational study. Education levels were categorized as either less than senior high school and above or equal to senior high school. The causes of death and mortality rates were also analyzed for each subgroup. Results: At the end of the 3-year follow-up period, 164 patients had died. In the male group, forward stepwise Cox regression analysis revealed that age, HD duration, hypertension, creatinine level, serum albumin level ≥3.6 g/dl, anuria, Kt/Vurea, and high education level were significant predictive factors for 3-year mortality rates. Conclusion: This prospective observational study demonstrated that education level was associated with mortality in men undergoing HD.
    Blood Purification 08/2013; 35(4):316-326. · 2.06 Impact Factor
  • International journal of cardiology 07/2013; · 6.18 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Studies on risk factors of mortality in elderly patients with hemodialysis usually focus on comorbidities, nutrition, and inflammation. Discussion on the correlation between living environment and mortality of these patients is limited. A total of 256 elderly hemodialysis patients participated in this 2-year prospective observational study. The subjects were divided into 2 subgroups based on whether they were living in Taipei Basin (n = 63) or not (n = 193). Demographic, hematological, nutritional, inflammatory, biochemical, and dialysis-related data were obtained for cross-sectional analysis. Causes of death and mortality rates were also analyzed for each subgroup. Patients in the basin group had a higher incidence of combined protein-energy wasting and inflammation than those in the around basin group. At the end of the 2-year follow-up, 68 patients had died. Univariate binary logistic regression analysis revealed that a very advanced age, basin group, serum albumin levels, serum creatinine levels, non-anuria, and the complications of stroke and CAD were associated with 2-year mortality. Meanwhile, log high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) levels were not associated with 2-year mortality. Multivariate Cox regression analysis revealed that basin group, serum albumin levels, and the complications of stroke and CAD were significant risk factors for 2-year mortality in these patients. The results of this study indicate that factors such as living in the Taipei Basin with higher air pollutant levels in elderly hemodialysis patients is associated with protein-energy wasting and inflammation, as well as 2-year mortality. These findings suggest that among this population, living environment is as important as comorbidities and nutrition. Furthermore, air pollution should be getting more attention especially in the overcrowding Basin topography.
    PLoS ONE 01/2013; 8(9):e74358. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Paraquat poisoning is characterized by acute lung injury, pulmonary fibrosis, respiratory failure, and multi-organ failure, resulting in a high rate of mortality and morbidity. The objectives of this study were to identify predictors of acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) in cases of paraquat poisoning and determine the association between these parameters. In total, 187 patients were referred for management of intentional paraquat ingestion between 2000 and 2010. Demographic, clinical, and laboratory data were recorded. Sequential organ failure assessment (SOFA) and Acute Kidney Injury Network (AKIN) scores were collected, and predictors of ARDS were analyzed. The overall mortality rate for the entire population was 54% (101/187). Furthermore, the mortality rate was higher in the ARDS patients than in the non-ARDS patients (80% vs. 43.80%, P<0.001). Additionally, the ARDS patients not only had higher AKIN48-h scores (P<0.009), SOFA48-h scores (P<0.001), and time to ARDS/nadir PaO2 (P=0.008) but also suffered from lower nadir PaO2 (P<0.001), nadir AaDO2 (P<0.001), and nadir eGFR (P=0.001) compared to those in the non-ARDS patients. Moreover, pneumomediastinum episodes were more frequent in the ARDS patients than in the non-ARDS patients (P<0.001). A multivariate Cox regression model revealed that blood paraquat concentrations (P<0.001), SOFA48-h scores (P=0.001), and steroid and cyclophosphamide pulse therapies (P=0.024) were significant predictors of ARDS. The cumulative survival rates differed significantly (P<0.001) between patients with SOFA48-h scores <3 and SOFA48-h scores ≥3, with a sensitivity of 95.8%, specificity of 58.4%, and overall correctness of 67.6%. Finally, the area under the receiver operating characteristic (AUROC) analysis showed that SOFA48-h scores (P<0.001) had a better discriminatory power than blood paraquat concentrations (P=0.01) for predicting ARDS. The analytical results indicate that SOFA48-h scores, blood paraquat concentrations, and steroid and cyclophosphamide pulse therapies are significantly associated with ARDS complications after paraquat intoxication.
    PLoS ONE 01/2013; 8(12):e82695. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Whether environmental lead exposure has a long-term effect on progressive diabetic nephropathy in type II diabetic patients remains unclear. A total of 107 type II diabetic patients with stage 3 diabetic nephropathy (estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) range, 30-60 mL/min/1.73 m(2)) with normal body lead burden (BLB) (<600 μ g/72 hr in EDTA mobilization tests) and no history of exposure to lead were prospectively followed for 2 years. Patients were divided into high-normal BLB (>80 μ g) and low-normal BLB (<80 μ g) groups. The primary outcome was a 2-fold increase in the initial creatinine levels, long-term dialysis, or death. The secondary outcome was a change in eGFR over time. Forty-five patients reached the primary outcome within 2 years. Although there were no differences in baseline data and renal function, progressive nephropathy was slower in the low-normal BLB group than that in the high-normal BLB group. During the study period, we demonstrated that each 100 μ g increment in BLB and each 10 μ g increment in blood lead levels could decrease GFR by 2.2 mL/min/1.72 m(2) and 3.0 mL/min/1.72 m(2) (P = 0.005), respectively, as estimated by generalized equations. Moreover, BLB was associated with increased risk of achieving primary outcome. Environmental exposure to lead may have a long-term effect on progressive diabetic nephropathy in type II diabetic patients.
    BioMed research international. 01/2013; 2013:742545.
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    ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Infertility affects approximately 10--15% of reproductive-age couples. Poor semen quality contributes to about 25% of infertile cases. Resulting from the direct effect on testicular function or hormonal alterations, heavy metals exposure has been related to impaired semen quality. The objective of this study was to assess the level of lead in the seminal plasma in men without occupational exposure to lead, and to determine the relationship between semen quality and lead concentration in the semen. METHODS: This is a prospective and nonrandomized clinical study conducted in University infertility clinic and academic research laboratory. Three hundred and forty-one male partners of infertile couples undergoing infertility evaluation and management were recruited to the study. Semen samples collected for the analyses of semen quality were also used for the measurement of lead concentrations. Semen samples were evaluated according to the WHO standards. RESULTS: All subjects were married and from infertile couples without occupational exposure to lead. There is a significant inverse correlation between the lead concentration in seminal plasma and sperm count. A higher semen lead concentration was correlated with lower sperm count, but not with semen volume, sperm motility or sperm morphology as assessed by simple linear regression. CONCLUSIONS: We found that semen lead concentration was significantly higher among the patients with lower sperm count. To our knowledge, this is the first study to demonstrate that a high level of lead accumulation in semen may reduce the sperm count contributing to infertility of men without occupational exposure to lead.
    Reproductive Biology and Endocrinology 11/2012; 10(1):91. · 2.41 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A previous study in type 2 diabetic patients with high-normal body lead burdens showed that EDTA chelation therapy for 3 months slows progressive diabetic nephropathy during a 12-month follow-up. The effect of a longer course of therapy on kidney function decrease over a longer follow-up is not known. A 12-month run-in phase, then a randomized single-blind study with a 27-month intervention. University medical center; 50 patients (serum creatinine, 1.5-3.9 mg/dL) with high-normal body lead burden (≥80-<600 μg) were randomly assigned to the treatment and control groups. The treatment group received weekly chelation therapy for 3 months to reduce their body lead burden to <60 μg and then as needed for 24 months to maintain this level. The control group received placebo for 3 months and then weekly for 5 weeks at 6-month intervals for 24 months. The primary end point was change in estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) over time. A secondary end point was a 2-fold increase in baseline serum creatinine level or the requirement for renal replacement therapy. Body lead burdens were assessed by EDTA mobilization tests and eGFR was calculated using the equation for Chinese patients with type 2 diabetes. Mean baseline eGFRs in the treatment and control groups were similar. After 3 months of chelation therapy, the change in eGFR in the treatment group (+1.0±4.8 mL/min/1.73 m(2)) differed significantly from that in the control group (-1.5±4.8 mL/min/1.73 m(2); P = 0.04). In the subsequent 24-month intervention, the yearly rate of decrease in eGFR (5.6±5.0 mL/min/1.73 m(2) per year) in the treatment group was slower than that (9.2±3.6 mL/min/1.73 m(2) per year; P = 0.04) in the control group. 17 (68%) control-group patients and 9 (36%) treatment-group patients achieved the secondary end point. Small sample size, not double blind. A 27-month course of EDTA chelation therapy retards the progression of diabetic nephropathy in type 2 diabetic patients with high-normal body lead burdens.
    American Journal of Kidney Diseases 06/2012; 60(4):530-8. · 5.29 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: This retrospective observational study examined the clinical features, the degrees of toxic hepatitis, physiological markers and clinical outcomes after intentional paraquat poisoning and sought to determine what association, if any, might exist between these findings. A total of 187 patients were referred for management of intentional paraquat ingestion between 2000 and 2010. Patients were categorized into two groups according to their hepatic complication, i.e. with (N = 87) or without (N = 100) toxic hepatitis. Demographic, clinical and laboratory data were obtained for analysis. Mortality rates were also analysed. It was found that patients with toxic hepatitis were younger (39.7 ± 13.7 vs 44.2 ± 16.6 year old, P = 0.046), and suffered from greater incidences of acute respiratory failure (63.2 vs 48.0%, P = 0.037) and acute renal failure (75.9 vs 56.0%, P = 0.004) than patients without hepatitis. The hospitalization period was longer in patients with hepatitis than without hepatitis (16.2 ± 14.6 vs 11.2 ± 12.1 days, P = 0.012), even though there was no difference in mortality rate between both groups (56.3 vs 53.0%, P = 0.649). Notably, the symptoms of toxic hepatitis developed within 6.7 ± 6.3 days of exposure to paraquat with aspartate aminotransferase (AST) 138 ± 156 U/L, alanine aminotransferase (ALT) 127 ± 114 U/L and total bilirubin 2.7 ± 2.6 mg/dL. The hepatitis peaked at 9.5 ± 8.8 days with AST 125 ± 139 U/L, ALT 183 ± 181 U/L and total bilirubin 3.2 ± 3.6 mg/dL. Nevertheless, the symptoms resolved within 17.3 ± 9.8 days of paraquat exposure, and none of the patients died of hepatic complication. A substantial proportion of paraquat patients suffered from hepatic complication (46.52%), but the spectrum of hepatitis in these patients seemed mild and transient.
    Liver international: official journal of the International Association for the Study of the Liver 06/2012; 32(9):1400-6. · 3.87 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To evaluate the treatment outcomes and costs of early keratectomy in the management of moderate Fusarium keratitis. Consecutive cases of culture proven Fusarium keratitis treated at our hospital between January 2004 to December 2010 were included in this retrospective study. There were 38 cases of moderate keratitis with infiltrates between 3 to 6 mm in diameter and depth of infiltration not exceeding the inner 1/3 of the cornea. After excluding 5 patients with incomplete follow-up data, 13 patients who received early keratectomy within 1 week of admission were compared with a group of 20 patients treated medically. The significance of the association between early keratectomy and visual acuity, progression to perforation, secondary glaucoma and cataract formation, adjuvant therapy, hospitalization days and cost were assessed. There were no differences between the keratectomy and medication groups in regards to age, sex, presence of systemic diseases, and hypopyon formation on presentation. The early keratectomy group had a shorter hospital stay than the medical therapy group. Disease duration was significantly lower in the early keratectomy group (median: 29.0 vs. 54.5 days, P<0.001). Median hospitalization costs per patient were lower with early keratectomy (mean ward fee: 15175.4 vs. 44159.5 NTD, P<0.001; mean donor fee: 0 vs. 900.0 NTD, P<0.001), primarily because of reductions in hospital stay. More patients in the medication group developed perforations than in the keratectomy group (20% vs. 0%, respectively) and the perforation-free rate was higher in those with early keratectomy, but the results were not statistically significant. Early keratectomy in moderate Fusarium keratitis may reduce length of hospital stay, hospital costs, and perforation rates.
    PLoS ONE 01/2012; 7(8):e42126. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Thousands of paraquat (PQ)-poisoned patients continue to die, particularly in developing countries. Although animal studies indicate that hemoperfusion (HP) within 2-4 h after intoxication effectively reduces mortality, the effect of early HP in humans remains unknown. METHODS: We analyzed the records of all PQ-poisoned patients admitted to 2 hospitals between 2000 and 2009. Patients were grouped according to early or late HP and high-dose (oral cyclophosphamide [CP] and intravenous dexamethasone [DX]) or repeated pulse (intravenous methylprednisolone [MP] and CP, followed by DX and repeated MP and/or CP) PQ therapy. Early HP was defined as HP <4 h, and late HP, as HP ≥4 h after PQ ingestion. We evaluated the associations between HP <4 h, <5 h, <6 h, and <7 h after PQ ingestion and the outcomes. Demographic, clinical, laboratory, and mortality data were analyzed. RESULTS: The study included 207 severely PQ-poisoned patients. Forward stepwise multivariate Cox hazard regression analysis showed that early HP <4 h (hazard ratio [HR] = 0.38, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.16-0.86; P = 0.020) or HP <5 h (HR = 0.60, 95% CI: 0.39-0.92; P = 0.019) significantly decreased the mortality risk. Further analysis showed that early HP reduced the mortality risk only in patients treated with repeated pulse therapy (n = 136), but not high-dose therapy (n = 71). Forward stepwise multivariate Cox hazard regression analysis showed that HP <4.0 h (HR = 0.19, 95% CI: 0.05-0.79; P = 0.022) or <5.0 h (HR = 0.49, 95% CI: 0.24-0.98; P = 0.043) after PQ ingestion significantly decreased the mortality risk in repeated pulse therapy patients, after adjustment for relevant variables. CONCLUSION: The results showed that early HP after PQ exposure might be effective in reducing mortality in severely poisoned patients, particularly in those treated with repeated pulse therapy.
    PLoS ONE 01/2012; 7(10):e48397. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Paraquat poisoning is characterized by multi-organ failure and pulmonary fibrosis with respiratory failure, resulting in high mortality and morbidity. The objective of this study was to identify predictors of mortality in cases of paraquat poisoning. Furthermore, we sought to determine the association between these parameters. A total of 187 patients were referred for management of intentional paraquat ingestion between January 2000 and December 2010. Demographic, clinical, and laboratory data were recorded. Sequential organ failure assessment (SOFA) and acute kidney injury network (AKIN) scores were collected, and predictors of mortality were analyzed. Overall hospital mortality for the entire population was 54% (101/187). Using a multivariate logistic regression model, it was found that age, time to hospitalization, blood paraquat level, estimated glomerular filtration rate at admission (eGFR( first day)), and the SOFA(48-h) score, but not the AKIN(48-h) score, were significant predictors of mortality. For predicting the in-hospital mortality, SOFA(48-h) scores displayed a good area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUROC) (0.795±0.033, P<0.001). The cumulative survival rate differed significantly between patients with SOFA(48-h) scores <3 and those ≥3 (P<0.001). A modified SOFA (mSOFA) score was further developed by using the blood paraquat level, and this new score also demonstrated a better AUROC (0.848±0.029, P<0.001) than the original SOFA score. Finally, the cumulative survival rate also differed significantly between patients with mSOFA scores <4 and ≥4 (P<0.001). The analytical data demonstrate that SOFA and mSOFA scores, which are based on the extent of organ function or rate of organ failure, help to predict mortality after intentional paraquat poisoning.
    PLoS ONE 01/2012; 7(12):e51743. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    Tzung-Hai Yen, Dan-Tzu Lin-Tan, Ja-Liang Lin
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    ABSTRACT: In May 2011, the illegal use of the phthalate plasticizer di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate in clouding agents for use in foods and beverages was reported in Taiwan. This food scandal has caused shock and panic among the majority of Taiwanese people and has attracted international attention. Phthalate exposure is assessed by ambient monitoring or human biomonitoring. Ambient monitoring relies on measuring chemicals in environmental media, foodstuff and consumer products. Human biomonitoring determines body burden by measuring the chemicals, their metabolites or specific reaction products in human specimens. In mammalian development, the fetus is set to develop into a female. Because the female phenotype is the default, impairment of testosterone production or action before the late phase may lead to feminizing characteristics. Phthalates disrupt the development of androgen-dependent structures by inhibiting fetal testicular testosterone biosynthesis. The spectrum of effects obtained following perinatal exposure of male rats to phthalates has remarkable similarities with the human testicular dysgenesis syndrome. Epidemiological studies have suggested associations between phthalate exposure and shorter gestational age, shorter anogenital distance, shorter penis, incomplete testicular descent, sex hormone alteration, precocious puberty, pubertal gynecomastia, premature thelarche, rhinitis, eczema, asthma, low birth weight, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, low intelligence quotient, thyroid hormone alteration, and hypospadias in infants and children. Furthermore, many studies have suggested associations between phthalate exposure and increased sperm DNA damage, decreased proportion of sperm with normal morphology, decreased sperm concentration, decreased sperm morphology, sex hormone alteration, decreased pulmonary function, endometriosis, uterine leiomyomas, breast cancer, obesity, hyperprolactinemia, and thyroid hormone alteration in adults. Finally, the number of phthalate-related scientific publications from Taiwan has increased greatly over the past 5 years, which may reflect the health effects from the illegal addition of phthalate plasticizer to clouding agent in foodstuff over the past two decades.
    Journal of the Formosan Medical Association 11/2011; 110(11):671-84. · 1.00 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The association between blood lead levels and mortality in patients on maintenance hemodialysis remains unclear. A cross-sectional and 18-month prospective study included 927 patients on maintenance hemodialysis. Baseline variables and blood lead levels were measured before hemodialysis and categorized as 3 equal groups: high (>12.64 μg/dL), middle (8.51-12.64 μg/dL), and low (<8.51 μg/dL). Mortality and cause of death were recoded for longitudinal analyses. At baseline, after related variables were adjusted, logarithmic transformation of blood lead level was negatively related to log ferritin and positively related to the vintage of hemodialysis and the percentage of urban area patients. By the end of the follow-up, 59 patients had died. Kaplan-Meier survival analysis showed that the high blood lead level group had greater mortality than the low blood lead level group (log-rank test, P<.001). After adjustment for potential variables, Cox multivariate analysis demonstrated that by using the low blood lead level as the reference, high blood lead levels were associated with increased hazard ratios (HRs) for all-cause (HR 4.70; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.92-11.49; P=.003), cardiovascular-cause (HR 9.71; 95% CI, 2.11-23.26; P=.005), and infection-cause (HR 5.35; 95% CI, 1.38-20.83; P=.046) 18-month mortality in patients on maintenance hemodialysis. Moreover, there was a significant trend (P=.032) of HRs for all-cause mortality among the 3 study groups. High blood lead level is associated with increased HRs for all-cause, cardiovascular-cause, and infection-cause 18-month mortality in patients on maintenance hemodialysis.
    The American journal of medicine 04/2011; 124(4):350-8. · 5.30 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Cadmium exposure is related to severity of diabetes and diabetes-related organ damage in diabetic patients. Elevated blood cadmium levels (BCLs) are well known in maintenance haemodialysis (MHD) patients but the clinical significance in diabetic MHD patients remains unknown. A total of 212 diabetic MHD patients were enrolled in this 18-month prospective study and were categorized into three equal groups according to the basal BCL: high (> 0.889 μg/L; n = 71), middle (0.373-0.889 μg/L; n = 70) and low (< 0.373 μg/L; n = 71) BCL groups. The mortality and cause of death were recorded and analysed longitudinally. Patients with high BCL had trends of higher white blood cell counts, glycosylated haemoglobin, phosphate and blood lead levels than other group patients. At the end of the follow-up, 31 patients had died. Kaplan-Meier analysis showed that the high BCL group patients had a higher mortality than other group patients (log-rank test, P = 0.036). Cox multivariate analysis demonstrated that logarithmic BCL was associated with increased hazard ratios (HR) for the all-cause mortality (HR = 2.336, 95% confidence intervals [CI] = 1.099-4.964, P = 0.027) in diabetic MHD patients. Similarly, if the low BCL group was the reference, the high BCL was associated with increased HR for all-cause mortality (HR = 2.865, 95% CI = 1.117-7.353, P = 0.043) in these patients. The study results first demonstrated that BCL is associated with increased HR for 18-month all-cause mortality in diabetic MHD patients. Avoiding smoking and high cadmium-containing food may be important in these patients.
    Nephrology Dialysis Transplantation 03/2011; 26(3):998-1005. · 3.37 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Conjunctival and corneal calcification (CCC) is the most common form of metastatic calcification in patients with chronic renal failure. The aim of this study is to investigate if severity of CCC correlates with vascular calcification and mortality in maintenance haemodialysis (MHD) patients. One hundred and nine MHD patients were recruited. CCC was evaluated by external eye photographs, and was graded and scored according to modified Porter and Crombie classification system described by Tokuyama et al. Chest X-ray examination was used to evaluate aortic arch calcification. Geographic, haematological, biochemical and dialysis-related data were obtained. The patients were analysed for traditional and non-traditional risk factors for cardiovascular disease stratified by severity of CCC. All patients were followed up for 1 year to investigate the risks for mortality. Forty-three, 35 and 31 patients had mild (scores ≤ 4), moderate and severe (scores ≥ 9) CCC at baseline, respectively. With trend estimation, patients with severe CCC had a significantly higher percentage of severe aortic arch calcification. Multiple linear regression analysis showed that hypertension, haemodialysis duration and corrected calcium level were associated with scores of CCC in MHD patients. Moreover, age, corrected calcium-phosphate level, and moderate and severe CCC were associated with grades of aortic arch calcification. At 1-year follow-up, 11 of 109 (10.1%) patients had died. Multivariate Cox proportional hazards model showed that age, corrected calcium and severe CCC were significant risk factors for all-cause 1-year mortality in MHD patients. Each increment of one score of CCC is associated with a 26.4% increased risk for all-cause mortality. Severity of CCC, which is easily obtained at bedside, acts as an independent predictor for all-cause 1-year mortality in MHD patients.
    Nephrology Dialysis Transplantation 03/2011; 26(3):1016-23. · 3.37 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: This report describes the first known case in the literature of acute exposure to a mixture of spinosad and flonicamid that resulted in a substantial clinical toxicities. An 80-year-old depressed female attempted suicide by drinking a mixture of 80-mL Conserve (Dow AgroSciences, Taipei, Taiwan) and 2-3 gram powder of flonicamid (Ishihara Sangyo Kaisha, Taipei, Taiwan). Spinosad was the main compound ingested. The clinical manifestations were mostly neurological, i.e. consciousness disturbance, shock, respiratory failure, pneumonitis and urinary retention. Endoscopic examination found grade 2a corrosive esophageal injury. After resuscitation, detoxification procedures and intensive care, the patient recovered fully without leaving any chronic sequels. An emerging question arising from this report is, why are the clinical symptoms so severe, given that both compounds were claimed safe in laboratory animals? The answer is unclear. One possible explanation is, the amount of spinosad ingested was far beyond the physiological safety dose that can be handled by human body. Other potential contributors to the clinical toxicities in this patient are the solvent compositions that were found in the Conserve insecticide formulation.
    Human & Experimental Toxicology 03/2011; 30(11):1878-81. · 1.31 Impact Factor
  • Tzung-Hai Yen, Dan-Tzu Lin-Tan, Ja-Liang Lin
    Kidney International 03/2011; 79(6):688; author reply 688-9. · 8.52 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The cardiothoracic ratio (CTR) indicates the left ventricular size; however, the significance of the CTR in patients on maintenance peritoneal dialysis (PD) remains unclear. In this study, 335 PD patients were enrolled and demographic, biochemical, co-morbidity, and dialysis-related data were obtained. The factors determining CTR were further analyzed. All patients were followed up for two years to investigate the mortality risks. We defined a normal CTR as less than the mean CTR value, mild cardiomegaly as a CTR between the mean and mean + 1 SD, and moderate-to-severe cardiomegaly as more than the mean CTR + 1 SD. Among the 335 patients, 163 patients were classified as having a normal CTR (<49.2%), 112 patients as having mild cardiomegaly (CTR 49.2-55.7%), and 60 patients as having moderate-to-severe cardiomegaly (CTR > 55.7%). χ(2) -analysis showed that the incidences of malnutrition and anemia were significantly higher in patients with severe cardiomegaly than in patients of the other groups. The CTR was positively correlated with age, but negatively correlated with albumin and hemoglobin levels. Twenty-six patients (7.7%) had died by the end of the study. Cox multivariate analysis revealed that the CTR significantly predicts all-cause two-year mortality in PD patients on maintenance PD; therefore, the CTR correlates with the nutritional and anemic status of PD patients and is a reliable predictor for all-cause two-year mortality. The analytical results of this study support continued efforts to reduce the CTR and treat underlying causes in patients with cardiomegaly.
    Therapeutic apheresis and dialysis: official peer-reviewed journal of the International Society for Apheresis, the Japanese Society for Apheresis, the Japanese Society for Dialysis Therapy 02/2011; 15(1):81-8. · 1.53 Impact Factor