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    ABSTRACT: Malignant biliary obstruction is often inoperable at presentation and has a poor prognosis. Percutaneously placed self-expanding metal stents (SEMS) have been widely used for palliation of malignant biliary obstruction as an alternative to major bypass surgery or when endoscopic drainage is not technically feasible. The success rate, procedural complications and outcomes in patients who underwent placement of SEMS in a tertiary referral centre are presented. All patients who had percutaneous transhepatic cholangiography (PTC) and SEMS for palliation of malignant biliary obstruction between May 2008 and July 2010 at Groote Schuur Hospital, Cape Town, were reviewed. A retrospective chart review was undertaken using multidisciplinary case notes of all patients. The data analysed included demographic information, diagnosis, level of biliary obstruction, number and type of procedures, efficacy and complications of SEMS insertion. Boston Scientific 69 mm by 10 mm Wallstent SEMS were used in all patients. RESULTS; Fifty patients (28 men, 22 women, mean age 61 years, range 48 - 80 years) underwent percutaneous SEMS placement. Twenty-one patients had biliary obstruction at the level of the hilum involving the hepatic duct bifurcation, 5 in the mid-common bile duct and 24 in the low common bile duct. In 20 patients (40%) SEMS were placed at the time of initial biliary drainage (one-stage procedure), while the remaining 30 patients underwent stent placement within 2 - 23 days of biliary drainage as a two-stage procedure because of difficult access through the lesion during the initial procedure. Five patients (10%) required bilateral SEMS insertion. Stent placement was successful in all patients and biliary obstruction was relieved in all. The mean serum bilirubin level decreased by a mean of 56% from 294 µmol/l to 129 µmol/l measured 5 days after stent insertion. Mean hospital stay after stent insertion was 4.1 days. The average length of hospital stay for patients who underwent a one-stage procedure was 3.2 days (range 1 - 11 days), and for patients who underwent a two-stage procedure 7.6 days (range 3 - 23 days). Nine patients (18%) developed a procedure-related complication, which included cholangitis after stent insertion (n=4), cholangitic liver abscesses (n=1), subphrenic liver collection (n=1), bile leakage (n=1) and cholecystitis (n=2). Three patients (6%) developed complications unrelated to SEMS insertion, which included myocardial ischaemia (n=2) and pneumonia (n=1). Stent occlusion occurred in 4 patients (8%) within a week as result of stent migration (n=3) or presumed biliary sludge (n=1); 2 (4%) stents occluded between 7 days and 1 month. Four patients (8%) died during hospital admission due to pre-existing biliary sepsis (n=3) and pneumonia (n=1). Nine patients developed duodenal obstruction due to disease progression and required endoscopic duodenal stenting. Four patients (8%) survived less than 1 month, 12 (24%) between 1 month and 3 months, 11 (22%) between 3 and 6 months, and 10 (20%) beyond 6 months. Follow-up was not possible for 9 patients (18%) from distant referral sites. These results demonstrate that percutaneously placed SEMS achieved satisfactory palliation with a low complication rate in a high-risk patient group with advanced malignant biliary obstruction.
    Preview · Article · Aug 2012 · South African journal of surgery. Suid-Afrikaanse tydskrif vir chirurgie
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    ABSTRACT: Tuberculosis (TB) in patients with or without advanced HIV infection may present as smear-negative, extrapulmonary and/or disseminated forms. We studied the role of pericardial and abdominal ultrasound examinations in the determination of extrapulmonary or disseminated TB. A prospective descriptive and analytic cross-sectional study design was used to determine the ultrasound findings of value in patients with subsequently proven TB. Ultrasound examinations were performed on 300 patients admitted to G F Jooste Hospital with suspected extrapulmonary or disseminated TB. The presence of hepatomegaly, splenomegaly, lymphadenopathy (location, size and appearance), ascites, pleural effusions, pericardial effusions and/or splenic micro-abscesses was noted. Clinical findings, microbiological and serological data were also recorded, correlated and analysed. Complete data sets were available for 267 patients; 91.0% were HIV positive, and 70.0% had World Health Organization clinical stage 4 disease. Active TB (determined by smear or culture) was present in 170 cases (63.7%). Ultrasonically visible abdominal lymphadenopathy over 1 cm in minimum diameter correlated with active TB in 55.3% of cases (odds ratio (OR) 2.6, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.5 - 4.6, p = 0.0002). Ultrasonographically detected pericardial effusions (OR 2.8, 95% CI 1.6 - 5.0, p < 0.0001), ascites (OR 2.2, 95% CI 1.2 - 4.2, p = 0.005) and splenic lesions (OR 1.9, 95% CI 1.0 - 3.5, p = 0.024) also predicted active TB. Pericardial and abdominal ultrasound examinations are valuable supplementary investigations in the diagnosis of suspected extrapulmonary or disseminated TB.
    Full-text · Article · Jan 2011 · South African medical journal = Suid-Afrikaanse tydskrif vir geneeskunde
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    ABSTRACT: We present two children beyond the neonatal and infant age who suffered global hypoxic events and showed an MRI appearance of reversal of the diffusion-weighted (DWI) and apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) signal involving exclusively the white matter. This is an unusual distribution for this age group and may represent delayed postanoxic leukoencephalopathy. The appearance of this type of insult has been described as occurring in younger children more frequently than in adults. Awareness of this condition, the fact that it may occur earlier, and the peculiar and possibly deceptive DWI/ADC signal reversal pattern exclusively involving the white matter is critical for making a correct diagnosis and giving a prognosis.
    No preview · Article · Feb 2009 · Pediatric Radiology
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American Journal of Neuroradiology 09/2008; 29(10):1861-6. DOI:10.3174/ajnr.A1233
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