The American Journal of Gastroenterology

Published by American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons

Online ISSN: 1572-0241


Print ISSN: 0002-9270


How Strong Is the Evidence?
  • Literature Review

July 2008


110 Reads

Yngve Falck-Ytter




The American Journal of Gastroenterology is published by Nature Publishing Group (NPG) on behalf of the American College of Gastroenterology (ACG). Ranked the #1 clinical journal covering gastroenterology and hepatology*, The American Journal of Gastroenterology (AJG) provides practical and professional support for clinicians dealing with the gastroenterological disorders seen most often in patients. Published with practicing clinicians in mind, the journal aims to be easily accessible, organizing its content by topic, both online and in print., *2007 Journal Citation Report (Thomson Reuters, 2008)

Is "negative" positive?

November 1999


25 Reads

The authors undertook a retrospective study to determine the relative frequencies of Clostridium difficile (C difficile) toxins A and B in all stool specimens submitted for C. difficile during a 20-month period in a pediatric hospital. They used the Premier EIA to detect toxin A and the Biowhittaker tissue culture assay to detect toxin B. Stool samples were excluded if they were solid, or had been stored improperly, i.e., unfrozen or not placed on ice when collected at an outside institution. They categorized the results into three groups: positive for toxin A only, for toxin B only, or for both toxins A and B. They analyzed the specimens according to the patient age group:

The Value of p-Value

July 2005


34 Reads

Chance of obtaining the observed result or one more extreme if one assumes that the effects of the treatments are equal; p is therefore the confidence with which the null-hypothesis is rejected and not the confidence with which one accepts that the difference is exactly zero; if p=0.05, the null-hypothesis is rejected with a probability of 5% and one accepts that the effects are different, or, the other way round, we accept an error rate (of falsely rejecting the null-hypothesis) of 1 in 20 cases; non-significant pvalues only imply that the data remain consistent with the null-hypothesis of treatment equality and not that equivalence has been demonstrated (!); → see also alpha error, confidence interval, power.

A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study to Assess Efficacy and Safety of 0.5 mg and 1 mg Alosetron in Women With Severe Diarrhea-predominant IBS

August 2007


70 Reads






Alosetron is indicated for women with chronic, severe diarrhea-predominant IBS (d-IBS) who have not responded adequately to conventional therapy. Constipation is the most common adverse event with alosetron treatment. Multiple dosing regimens were assessed in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study (S3B30040) to determine efficacy, tolerability, and evaluate constipation rate. 705 women with severe d-IBS were randomized to placebo, alosetron 0.5 mg once daily, 1 mg once daily, or 1 mg twice daily for 12 wk. The primary end point was the proportion of week 12 responders (patients with moderate or substantial improvement in IBS symptoms) on the 7-point Likert Global Improvement Scale (GIS). Secondary end points were average rate of adequate relief of IBS pain and discomfort, and bowel symptom improvements. The proportion of GIS responders at week 12 (primary time point) was significantly greater in all alosetron groups compared with placebo (54/176 [30.7%], 90/177 [50.8%], 84/175 [48%], and 76/177 [42.9%] for placebo, 0.5, 1 mg once daily, and 1 mg twice daily alosetron groups, respectively; P< or = 0.02). Results were similar for the average adequate relief rate (treatment effects > or =12%, P< or = 0.038). Bowel symptoms were improved in all alosetron groups. Constipation was the most common adverse event (9%, 16%, and 19% patients in the 0.5 mg, 1 mg once daily, and 1 mg twice daily groups, respectively). One event of intestinal obstruction and one of ischemic colitis occurred in the 0.5 mg group, and one event of fecal impaction occurred in the 1 mg twice-daily group. All were self-limited and resolved without sequelae. Alosetron 0.5 mg and 1 mg once daily as well as 1 mg twice daily are effective in providing global improvement in IBS symptoms, adequate relief of IBS pain and discomfort, and improvement in bowel symptoms in women with severe d-IBS. Lower dosing regimens resulted in a decreased constipation rate.

Figure 1: Enrollment and treatment through week 8.
Figure 2: Kaplan–Meier estimate of the proportion of patients free of clinical response as defined by the partial Mayo Score through 8 weeks for the combined Andrographis paniculata group, the A. paniculata 1,200 mg group, the A. paniculata 1,800 mg group, and the placebo group. ITT, intention-to-treat.
Table 3 . Summary of safety fi ndings through week 12 a P value b P value b
Andrographis paniculata Extract (HMPL-004) for Active Ulcerative Colitis
  • Article
  • Full-text available

October 2012


1,321 Reads

OBJECTIVES: Andrographis paniculata has in vitro inhibitory activity against TNF-α, IL-1β and NF-κB. A pilot study of A. paniculata extract (HMPL-004) suggested similar efficacy to mesalamine for ulcerative colitis. METHODS: A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial evaluated the efficacy of A. paniculata extract (HMPL-004) in 224 adults with mild-to-moderate ulcerative colitis. Patients were randomized to A. paniculata extract (HMPL-004) 1,200 mg or 1,800 mg daily or placebo for 8 weeks. RESULTS: In total, 45 and 60% of patients receiving A. paniculata 1,200 mg and 1,800 mg daily, respectively, were in clinical response at week 8, compared with 40% of those who received placebo (P=0.5924 for 1,200 mg vs. placebo and P=0.0183 for 1,800 mg vs. placebo). In all, 34 and 38% of patients receiving A. paniculata 1,200 mg and 1,800 mg daily, respectively, were in clinical remission at week 8, compared with 25% of those who received placebo (P=0.2582 for 1,200 mg vs. placebo and P=0.1011 for 1,800 mg vs. placebo). Adverse events developed in 60 and 53% of patients in the A. paniculata 1,200 mg and 1,800 mg daily groups, respectively, and 60% in the placebo group. CONCLUSIONS: Patients with mildly to moderately active ulcerative colitis treated with A. paniculata extract (HMPL-004) at a dose of 1,800 mg daily were more likely to achieve clinical response than those receiving placebo.

Vibrio cholerae 01 isolated in the gallbladder of a patient presenting with cholecystitis

November 1996


17 Reads

Cholera is a topical infection of the intestinal tract and rarely causes extraintestinal disease. The gallbladder has been proposed to be the reservoir of this organism. We present a patient from Bolivia who developed symptoms of acute cholecystitis and whose bile culture grew Vibrio cholerae 01 El tor.

Figure 1: Study flowchart. Inclusion criteria were as follows: proven mesalazine-refractory ulcerative colitis (European consensus definition (16) with an inadequate response to mesalazine for 6 weeks at a dose of ≥3 g/day for over 4 weeks or documented intolerance to mesalazine (a documented intolerance required previous doctors’ letters or medical notes that stated that an adverse event possibly related to mesalazine led to a discontinuation of its therapy); active disease with blood in stool for at least 6 weeks; SCCAI ≥5 and SCCAI subscore for “blood in stool” ≥2 at baseline visit (V2); comedication was allowed if on a stable dose for 4 weeks (e.g., 5-ASA, systemic acting steroids (if taken for ≥8 weeks before the start of the study), azathioprine (2–2.5 mg/kg), 6-mercaptopurine (1–1.5 mg/kg), both if taken for ≥3 months); and a negative pregnancy test at V1 and V2 plus the use of adequate contraception, if applicable. Exclusion criteria were as follows: toxic megacolon or fulminant courses; therapy with cyclosporine, tacrolimus, methotrexate, or TNF-α-antagonists within 3 months before study entry; current treatment with opiates or loperamide; current antibiotic treatment; rectal applications of aminosalicylates, steroids, or budesonide; oral application of topically acting steroids; ulcerative proctitis with a disease extent <10 cm; inflammatory or bleeding disorders of the gastrointestinal tract other than UC, or diseases that may cause diarrhea or gastrointestinal bleeding; condition after surgery of the colon; any other uncontrolled systemic diseases (e.g., cardiac, renal, pulmonary, hepatic) or severe chronic diseases (e.g., malignancies, HIV infection); and pregnant or nursing women. 5-ASA, 5-aminosalicylic acid; AE, adverse event; Discont. Intervent., discontinued intervention; INR, international normalized ratio; SCCAI, Simple Clinical Colitis Activity Index; TNF-α, tumor necrosis factor-α; UC, ulcerative colitis.
Figure 2: Primary end-point analysis.The comparison between placebo and the highest dose group revealed an estimate of −1.56 and a two-sided P value of 0.03 with a 95% confidence interval of −2.96 to −0.16. SCCAI, Simple Clinical Colitis Activity Index.
Figure 3: Time to first symptom resolution: all active LT-02 groups pooled vs. placebo. LT-02 patients reached the end point of first symptom resolution more than 2 weeks earlier than placebo (P=0.02, preplanned, two-sided log-rank test). In total, almost twice as many LT-02 patients reached complete symptom resolution compared with placebo.
First Multicenter Study of Modified Release Phosphatidylcholine "LT-02" in Ulcerative Colitis: A Randomized, Placebo-Controlled Trial in Mesalazine-Refractory Courses

May 2014


854 Reads

OBJECTIVES: Phosphatidylcholine is a key component of the mucosal barrier. Treatment with modified release phosphatidylcholine aims to improve the impaired barrier function. The primary objective is to evaluate the efficacy of LT-02, a newly designed modified release phosphatidylcholine formula, in a multicenter setting. METHODS: This is a double-blinded, randomized, placebo-controlled, superiority study conducted in 24 ambulatory referral centers in Germany, Lithuania, and Romania. A total of 156 patients with an inadequate response to mesalazine, a disease activity score (Simple Clinical Colitis Activity Index (SCCAI)) of ≥5, and bloody diarrhea underwent treatment with 0, 0.8, 1.6, or 3.2 g LT-02. The primary end point was defined a priori as changes in SCCAI from baseline to the end of treatment. The primary statistical model was a general linear least-squares model. The study was funded by the sponsor Lipid Therapeutics, Heidelberg, Germany, and registered at RESULTS: Baseline characteristics and dropouts were well balanced between all groups. The primary analyses revealed an SCCAI drop of 33.3% in the placebo group (from 9.0 to 6.0 points) compared with 44.3% in the 0.8 g LT-02 (from 8.8 to 4.9, P>0.05) and 40.7% in the 1.6 g groups (from 8.6 to 5.1, P>0.05). The 3.2 g group improved 51.7% from 8.5 to 4.1 (P=0.030 in comparison with placebo). The remission rate was 15% (6/40) in the placebo group compared with 31.4% (11/35) in the highest LT-02 dose group (P=0.089). Mucosal healing was achieved in 32.5% of placebo patients compared with 47.4% of LT-02 patients (P=0.098); the rates for histologic remission were 20% compared with 40.5%, respectively (P=0.016). There were 17 (48.6%) treatment-emergent adverse events in the highest dose group (and 0 serious adverse events (SAEs)) compared with 22 (55%) in the placebo group (4 SAEs). CONCLUSIONS: The primary end point analysis showed a statistically significant improvement in disease activity during LT-02 treatment in comparison with placebo. The drug was found to be very safe.

Outcomes of Clostridium difficile-Associated Disease Treated With Metronidazole or Vancomycin Before and After the Emergence of NAP1/027

January 2008


47 Reads

To reassess the comparative efficacy of vancomycin versus metronidazole in the treatment of Clostridium difficile-associated disease (CDAD) after the emergence in 2003 of the hypervirulent NAP1/027 strain. A retrospective cohort study was conducted in a tertiary-care Canadian hospital among 1,616 patients treated initially with metronidazole (N=1,360), vancomycin (N=219), or both (N=37), between 1991 and 2006, and followed for 60 days after diagnosis. Primary outcome was severe/complicated CDAD (SC-CDAD) defined as any of: (a) death within 30 days, (b) septic shock, (c) megacolon, (d) perforation, or (e) emergency colectomy. Adjusted odds ratios (AOR) and their 95% confidence intervals (CI) were calculated, stratifying into pre-epidemic (1991-2002) and epidemic (2003-2006) periods. Secondary outcome was recurrence within 60 days. Risk factors for SC-CDAD were the same in both periods: age>or=65 yr, male sex, immunosuppression, hospital acquisition, tube feeding, short duration of diarrhea, fever, elevated leukocytosis, or creatinine. Adjusting for confounders and using metronidazole therapy as baseline, vancomycin therapy was associated with a lower probability of developing SC-CDAD in 1991-2002 (AOR 0.21, 95% CI 0.05-0.99, P=0.048) but not during 2003-2006 (AOR 0.90, 95% CI 0.53-1.55, P=0.71). For both metronidazole and vancomycin, risk of recurrence increased in 2003-2004 but decreased in 2005-2006. Loss of superiority of vancomycin over metronidazole coincided with the emergence of NAP1/027. Toxin hyperproduction by NAP1/027 might be such that the disease follows its natural course. Novel therapeutic approaches are needed. The higher risk of recurrence in 2003-2004 probably reflected reinfections rather than relapses.

Double-blind multicenter comparison of 1,200 mg. and 1,000 mg. cimetidine in hospitalized and ambulatory duodenal ulcer patients

January 1982


18 Reads

A multicenter double-blind study was made to compare whether 1,000 mg dosage of cimetidine, the dose commonly employed in the United Kingdom, was as effective as the 1,200 mg. dose recommended in the United States for the treatment of duodenal ulcer. Our second goal was to test whether hospitalization would enhance the efficacy of cimetidine in the healing of duodenal ulcer. There was no difference in healing rate after either one (40%) or four (86%) weeks of therapy. In addition, hospitalization (one week) did not enhance the efficacy of cimetidine therapy.

Table 1 . Characteristics of patients with rebleeding during follow-up
Figure 2: Incidence of rebleeding and of recurrence of H. pylori (Hp) infection during follow up.
Long-Term Follow-Up of 1,000 Patients Cured of Helicobacter pylori Infection Following an Episode of Peptic Ulcer Bleeding

May 2012


175 Reads

To evaluate the effect of Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) eradication on ulcer bleeding recurrence in a prospective, long-term study including 1,000 patients. Patients with peptic ulcer bleeding were prospectively included. Prior non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) use was not considered exclusion criteria. H. pylori infection was confirmed by rapid urease test, histology, or (13)C-urea breath test. Several eradication therapies were used. Subsequently, ranitidine 150 mg o.d. was administered until eradication was confirmed by (13)C-urea breath test 8 weeks after completing therapy. Patients with therapy failure received a second, third, or fourth course of eradication therapy. Patients with eradication success did not receive maintenance anti-ulcer therapy and were controlled yearly with a repeat breath test. NSAID use was not permitted during follow-up. Thousand patients were followed up for at least 12 months, with a total of 3,253 patient-years of follow-up. Mean age 56 years, 75% males, 41% previous NSAID users. In all, 69% had duodenal ulcer, 27% gastric ulcer, and 4% pyloric ulcer. Recurrence of bleeding was demonstrated in three patients at 1 year (which occurred after NSAID use in two cases, and after H. pylori reinfection in another one), and in two more patients at 2 years (one after NSAID use and another after H. pylori reinfection). The cumulative incidence of rebleeding was 0.5% (95% confidence interval, 0.16-1.16%), and the incidence rate of rebleeding was 0.15% (0.05-0.36%) per patient-year of follow up. Peptic ulcer rebleeding virtually does not occur in patients with complicated ulcers after H. pylori eradication. Maintenance anti-ulcer (antisecretory) therapy is not necessary if eradication is achieved. However, NSAID intake or H. pylori reinfection may exceptionally cause rebleeding in H. pylori-eradicated patients.

Figure 1: Patient disposition. IV, intravenous.
Figure 2: Mean (95% CI) change from baseline in Hb by treatment and by dose, FAS. (a) Mean (95% CI) change from baseline between iron isomaltoside 1,000 and oral iron, (b) estimated difference (95% CI) between iron isomaltoside 1,000 and oral iron of change in Hb from baseline to each time-point. (c) Mean (95 % CI) change from baseline between iron isomaltoside 1,000 by dose (<1,000 mg, 1,000 mg, and >1,000 mg) and oral iron. Estimates (mean and 95% CI) from a mixed model with repeated measures with strata and country as factors, treatment*week interaction, and baseline value as covariate. P values refer to comparison to oral iron week 8. CI, confidence interval; FAS, full analysis set; Hb, hemoglobin; IV, intravenous.
Figure 3: Mean (95% confidence interval (CI)) change from baseline in s-ferritin and transferrin saturation by treatment. Estimates from a mixed model with repeated measures with strata and country as factors, treatment×week interaction, and baseline value as covariate.
Patient disposition. IV, intravenous.
A Randomized, Open-Label, Non-Inferiority Study of Intravenous Iron Isomaltoside 1,000 (Monofer) Compared With Oral Iron for Treatment of Anemia in IBD (PROCEED)

October 2013


316 Reads

OBJECTIVES: In the largest head-to-head comparison between an oral and an intravenous (IV) iron compound in patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) so far, we strived to determine whether IV iron isomaltoside 1,000 is non-inferior to oral iron sulfate in the treatment of iron deficiency anemia (IDA). METHODS: This prospective, randomized, comparative, open-label, non-inferiority study was conducted at 36 sites in Europe and India. Patients with known intolerance to oral iron were excluded. A total of 338 IBD patients in clinical remission or with mild disease, a hemoglobin (Hb) <12 g/dl, and a transferrin saturation (TSAT) <20% were randomized 2:1 to receive either IV iron isomaltoside 1,000 according to the Ganzoni formula (225 patients) or oral iron sulfate 200 mg daily (equivalent to 200 mg elemental iron; 113 patients). An interactive web response system method was used to randomize the eligible patient to the treatment groups. The primary end point was change in Hb from baseline to week 8. Iron isomaltoside 1,000 and iron sulfate was compared by a non-inferiority assessment with a margin of −0.5 g/dl. The secondary end points, which tested for superiority, included change in Hb from baseline to weeks 2 and 4, change in s-ferritin, and TSAT to week 8, number of patients who discontinued study because of lack of response or intolerance of investigational drugs, change in total quality of life (QoL) score to weeks 4 and 8, and safety. Exploratory analyses included a responder analysis (proportion of patients with an increase in Hb ≥2 g/dl after 8 weeks), the effect of regional differences and total iron dose level, and other potential predictors of the treatment response. RESULTS: Non-inferiority in change of Hb to week 8 could not be demonstrated. There was a trend for oral iron sulfate being more effective in increasing Hb than iron isomaltoside 1,000. The estimated treatment effect was −0.37 (95% confidence interval (CI): −0.80, 0.06) with P=0.09 in the full analysis set (N=327) and −0.45 (95% CI: −0.88, −0.03) with P=0.04 in the per protocol analysis set (N=299). In patients treated with IV iron isomaltoside 1,000, the mean change in s-ferritin concentration was higher with an estimated treatment effect of 48.7 (95% CI: 18.6, 78.8) with P=0.002, whereas the mean change in TSAT was lower with an estimated treatment effect of −4.4 (95% CI: −7.4, −1.4) with P=0.005, compared with patients treated with oral iron. No differences in changes of QoL were observed. The safety profile was similar between the groups. The proportion of responders with Hb ≥2 g/dl (IV group: 67% oral group: 61%) were comparable between the groups (P=0.32). Iron isomaltoside 1,000 was more efficacious with higher cumulative doses of >1,000 mg IV. Significant predictors of Hb response to IV iron treatment were baseline Hb and C-reactive protein (CRP). CONCLUSIONS: We could not demonstrate non-inferiority of IV iron isomaltoside 1,000 compared with oral iron in this study. Based on the dose–response relationship observed with the IV iron compound, we suggest that the true iron demand of IV iron was underestimated by the Ganzoni formula in our study. Alternative calculations including Hb and CRP should be explored to gauge iron stores in patients with IBD.

The Epidemiology of Malignant Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumors: An Analysis of 1,458 Cases from 1992 to 2000

February 2005


177 Reads

The epidemiology of gastrointestinal stromal tumor has not been well examined, and prior studies often provide conflicting results. We conducted the first population-based study to evaluate the incidence and survival of malignant gastrointestinal stromal tumor in the United States. We utilized the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results registry from the National Cancer Institute to identify all cases of malignant gastrointestinal stromal tumor diagnosed from 1992 to 2000. The age-adjusted incidence rates and the survival rates were calculated. Cox proportional hazards models were used to examine the risk of mortality. Between 1992 and 2000, there were 1,458 cases of diagnosed gastrointestinal stromal tumor. The age-adjusted yearly incidence rate was 0.68/100,000. The mean age at diagnosis was 63 yr. Fifty-four percent were men and 46% were women. The incidence rate was higher among men and among Blacks. Fifty-one percent of cases were in the stomach, 36% small intestine, 7% colon, 5% rectum, and 1% in the esophagus. Fifty-three percent of cases were staged as localized, 19% regional, 23% distant, and 5% unstaged. The 1- and 5-yr relative survival rates were 80% and 45%, respectively. The Cox analysis showed that older age, Black race, advanced stage, and receipt of therapy were independent predictors of mortality. Malignant gastrointestinal stromal tumors rare, but are more common in the older population, men, and Blacks. Risk factors for mortality include older age, Black race, advanced stage, and no surgical intervention.

Intravenous load of fructose and fructose 1,6-diphosphate: Effects on uricemia in patients with nonalcoholic liver disease

March 1996


13 Reads

Objectives: The i.v. load of fructose causes a significantly higher adenosine triphosphate (ATP) degradation and uric acid production in cirrhotic patients than in healthy controls. Resynthesis of ATP from adenosine diphosphate (ADP) may be facilitated by the phosphorylated compound fructose 1,6-diphosphate, which is used as energy support in parenteral nutrition. The aim of our research was to evaluate: 1) The 1-h uricemic effect of i.v. fructose (0.5 g/kg body weight) in 10 healthy controls and in 78 patients with differenct stages of non-alcoholic chronic liver damage associated or not with malnutrition or hepatocellular carcinoma; and 2) the effect of fructose 1,6-diphosphate (5 g/50 ml) administered i.v. after fructose infusion on the induced uricemia in a subgroup of 13 patients with well compensated cirrhosis. Results and conclusions: The increase of uricemia above the basal level after fructose infusion was significantly higher (p < 0.01) in cirrhotics (3 mg/dl) than in controls (1.2 mg/dl) and in patients with chronic hepatitis (1.9 mg/dl) and was completely reversed by fructose 1,6-diphosphate in the patients tested. Neither Child-Pugh classes of cirrhosis nor malnutrition (present in about 50% of the patients) or hepatocarcinoma significantly affected the fructose-induced uricemia. Therefore, the fructose test efficiently differentiates cirrhotics from chronic hepatitis patients and healthy subjects, but it does not distinguish the various stages of the progression of cirrhosis or its complications.

Should We Standardize the 1,700-Year-Old Fecal Microbiota Transplantation?

November 2012


1,368 Reads

The American Journal of Gastroenterology is published by Nature Publishing Group (NPG) on behalf of the American College of Gastroenterology (ACG). Ranked the #1 clinical journal covering gastroenterology and hepatology*, The American Journal of Gastroenterology (AJG) provides practical and professional support for clinicians dealing with the gastroenterological disorders seen most often in patients. Published with practicing clinicians in mind, the journal aims to be easily accessible, organizing its content by topic, both online and in print., *2007 Journal Citation Report (Thomson Reuters, 2008)

Development and Evaluation of The Liver Disease Quality of Life Instrument in Persons With Advanced, Chronic Liver Disease—The Ldqol 1.0

December 2000


359 Reads

Assessment of health-related quality of life (HRQOL) outcomes in studies of liver disease and liver transplantation is necessary. Reliable and valid disease-targeted HRQOL measures are thus needed. The objective of this study was to develop a reliable and valid self-report HRQOL instrument for ambulatory adults with chronic liver disease. The Liver Disease Quality of Life instrument, LDQOL 1.0 (an HRQOL measure that uses the SF-36 as a generic core and 12 disease-targeted multi-item scales) was administered in a multicenter, cross-sectional field test to 221 ambulatory adults with advanced, chronic liver disease referred for primary liver transplantation evaluation. Disease-targeted scales included liver disease-related symptoms, liver disease-related effects on activities of daily living, concentration, memory, sexual functioning, sexual problems, sleep, loneliness, hopelessness, quality of social interaction, health distress, and self-perceived stigma of liver disease. We estimated the internal consistency reliability (Cronbach's alpha) for multi-item scales and construct validity. Interial consistency reliability coefficients were excellent, ranging from 0.62 to 0.95, with 19 of 20 scales >0.70. Multitrait scaling analysis provided strong support for item discrimination across scales, and exploratory factor analysis demonstrated distinguishable physical, mental, and social health dimensions. Significant associations were found between worse HRQOL and worse Child-Pugh class, worse self-rated liver disease severity, and increased number of disability days. The results of this multicenter field test provide support for the reliability and validity of the LDQOL 1.0 as an HRQOL outcome measure for individuals with chronic liver disease.

Inactivation of corticosteroids in intestinal mucosa by 11β-hydroxysteroid:NADP oxidoreductase (EC

November 1983


8 Reads

Activity of the enzyme 11 beta-hydroxysteroid:NADP oxidoreductase (EC in human intestinal mucosa was determined by incubating scraped mucosa with 3H-cortisone and 14C-cortisol; these steroids were then extracted, separated chromatographically, and the radioactivity assayed to determine simultaneously both reductase and dehydrogenase activities. This was the only significant metabolic alteration which the substrate underwent. Only two cases had slight (5 and 13%) reductase activity. In 35 patients, 16 male and 19 female, including seven cases of Crohn's disease, three ulcerative colitis, five diverticulitis, two undergoing surgery for repair of injuries and 18 for carcinoma of colon or rectum, cortisol was converted to cortisone in 15 min with a wide range of values distributed uniformly up to 85% dehydrogenation, with a mean of 42%. When tissue homogenates were fortified with coenzymes, excess NADPH lowered dehydrogenase activity 81%; excess NADP increased dehydrogenase activity 2-fold in three cases. It is possible that a value is characteristic of an individual but perhaps more likely enzyme activity varies with metabolic events involving changes in the coenzyme levels in mucosa, and a random sampling might be expected to yield such a distribution of values. In any event, where activity is high most of the cortisol is inactivated within minutes. It is suggested that synthetic corticoids which escape such metabolic alteration might, except during pregnancy, prove superior in the treatment of conditions such as inflammatory bowel disease.

Table 1 . Characteristics of patients who survived or died from peptic ulcer bleeding
Table 2 . Causes of death of 577 patients who died within 30 days after index bleeding
Table 4 . Univariate analysis between bleeding and non- bleeding-related mortality (excluding 11 cases with unclassifi ed cause of death)
Causes of Mortality in Patients With Peptic Ulcer Bleeding: A Prospective Cohort Study of 10,428 Cases

September 2009


1,833 Reads

Despite advances in endoscopic and pharmacological treatment for peptic ulcer bleeding (PUB), mortality remains at 5-10% worldwide. Our aim was to investigate the causes of death in a prospective cohort of PUB in a tertiary referral center. Between 1993 and 2005, all patients with upper gastrointestinal bleeding (UGIB) admitted to the Prince of Wales Hospital were prospectively registered. Demographic data, characteristics of ulcer, and pharmacological, endoscopic, and surgical therapy, were documented. Mortality cases were classified as (A) bleeding-related death (A1: uncontrolled bleeding, A2: within 48 h after endoscopy, A3: during surgery for uncontrolled bleeding, A4: surgical complications or within 1 month after surgery, and A5: endoscopic related mortality) or (B) non-bleeding-related death (B1: cardiac causes, B2: pulmonary causes, B3: cerebrovascular disease, B4: multiorgan failure, and B5: terminal malignancy). In all, 18,508 cases of UGIB were enrolled; among them, 10,428 cases from 9,375 patients were confirmed to have PUB, and 577 (6.2%) patients died. There were significantly more patients who died of non-ulcer bleeding causes (79.7%) than bleeding causes (18.4%). The mean (s.d.) age of those who died of bleeding-related causes was higher (75.4 (12.6) years) than that of those who died of non-bleeding causes (71.7 (13.1) years) (P=0.010). Most bleeding-related deaths occurred when immediate control of bleeding failed (29.2%) or when patients died within 48 h after endoscopic therapy (25.5%). Among those who died of non-bleeding-related causes, multiorgan failure (23.9%), pulmonary conditions (23.5%), and terminal malignancy (33.7%) were most common. The majority of PUB patients died of non-bleeding-related causes. Optimization of management should aim at reducing the risk of multiorgan failure and cardiopulmonary death instead of focusing merely on successful hemostasis.

Table 1 . Demographic and clinical data in 10,662 subjects who underwent diagnostic EGD using propofol sedation n ( % ) 
Table 2 . The relationship between the age or gender of subject and the dose of propofol used in 10,662 subjects who underwent diagnostic EGD 
Low-Dose Propofol Sedation for Diagnostic Esophagogastroduodenoscopy: Results in 10,662 Adults

June 2009


264 Reads

The use of propofol sedation during endoscopic procedures has increased in recent years. The aim of this study was to evaluate the safety and effectiveness of nurse-administered low-dose propofol sedation for diagnostic esophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD). We prospectively assessed the outcome and complications of low-dose bolus propofol for endoscopic sedation for diagnostic EGD. Propofol was administered by bolus injection, with a standard protocol of 40 mg for patients <70 years old, 30 mg for patients 70-89 years old, and 20 mg for patients 90 years or older. When required for adequate sedation, additional doses were given, to a maximum of 120 mg. The primary outcome measure was respiratory depression, defined as oxygen desaturation (SpO(2) <90%) that continued for more than 20 s. Secondary measures included successful procedures, full recovery within 60 min of the procedure, and complications. All procedures were successful; 8,431 of 10,662 patients (79.1%) completed diagnostic EGD with a single bolus of propofol. Only 0.26% (28 patients) required transient supplemental oxygen supply; neither mask ventilation nor endotracheal intubation was required. Full recovery occurred in 99.9% of patients 60 min after the procedure. Men and younger patients required significantly higher doses of propofol than did the women and older patients (men vs. women, 46.5+/-19 vs. 42.7+/-15 mg, P=0.0008; age 40-49 vs. age 50-59, 51.5+/-16 vs. 46.3+/-13 mg, P<0.0001). Of the 400 patients, 368 (92%) wanted to drive home or to their offices, and all did so without incident. A total of 99% were willing to repeat the same procedure again. Low-dose nurse-administered propofol sedation is safe and practical for diagnostic EGD.

NCX-1000, a Nitric Oxide-Releasing Derivative of UDCA, Does Not Decrease Portal Pressure in Patients With Cirrhosis: Results of a Randomized, Double-Blind, Dose-Escalating Study

November 2009


61 Reads

NCX-1000 (2(acetyloxy) benzoic acid-3(nitrooxymethyl)phenyl ester) is an nitric oxide (NO)-releasing derivative of ursodeoxycholic acid (UDCA), which showed selective vasodilatory effect on intrahepatic circulation in animal models of cirrhosis. This study was aimed at testing the efficacy and tolerability of this compound in patients with cirrhosis and portal hypertension. This was a single-center, phase-2a, randomized (4:1), double-blind, parallel-group, dose-escalating study. Patients received progressive oral doses of NCX-1000 or placebo up to 2 g t.i.d. or maximum tolerated doses for 16 days. Efficacy on fasting and postprandial hepatic venous pressure gradient (HVPG) at baseline and after treatment was assessed. Hepatic blood flow (HBF) and arterial blood pressure were also measured. Eleven patients (nine NCX-1000 and two placebo) were enrolled and completed the trial. After NCX-1000 treatment, HVPG did not change (16.7+/-3.8 vs. 17.1+/-3.8 mm Hg; P=0.596), and HBF decreased significantly (904+/-310 vs. 1,129+/-506 ml/min; P=0.043). The postprandial increase in portal pressure and HBF was not modified by NCX-1000. There was no significant effect on diastolic blood pressure, but systolic blood pressure was reduced by the treatment in a dose-dependent manner (121+/-11 mm Hg after NCX-1000 vs. 136+/-7 mm Hg at baseline; P=0.003). Seven non-serious adverse events were experienced by four patients (one on placebo). In patients with cirrhosis and portal hypertension, NCX-1000 administration was safe, but it was not able to reduce portal pressure. A significant reduction of systolic blood pressure and HBF was observed in the treatment arm, suggesting that the drug had systemic effects and lacked selective release of NO at the intrahepatic circulation.

Oral disodium cromoglycate treatment on irritable bowel syndrome: An open study on 101 subjects with diarrheic type

February 1992


54 Reads

Several studies on the usefulness of oral disodium cromoglycate (DSCG) in the treatment of systemic adverse reaction to foods have been performed, with less attention to gastroenterological symptoms. In the present study, we selected 101 patients with diarrheic-type irritable bowel syndrome which improved after an elimination diet and worsened after a challenge with specific food(s). All patients were then tested for 48 commercial alimentary antigens by skin prick test (SPT) and underwent 8 wk of oral DSCG (500 mg three times a day), and the results were evaluated by means of a semiquantitative subjective and objective score. We observed an improvement of the symptoms in 67% of the 74 SPT-positive patients, whereas only 41% of the 27 SPT-negative patients showed a positive response to DSCG (p less than 0.05). These data confirm the protective role of DSCG in food-dependent diarrheic-type irritable bowel syndrome with food allergy features.

Ioannou GN, Boyko EJ, Lee SP. The prevalence and predictors of elevated serum aminotransferase activity in the United States in 1999-2002. Am J Gastroenterol. 101: 76-82

January 2006


168 Reads

The presence of elevated serum aminotransferase activity is a sign of possible underlying liver disease. We aimed to describe the prevalence and associations of elevated serum aminotransferase activity in a recent, nationally representative U.S. survey. We described the prevalence and predictors of elevated alanine aminotransferase (ALT >43 IU/L) or elevated aspartate aminotransferase (AST >40 IU/L) activity among 6,823 participants of the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) conducted between 1999 and 2002. We compared our findings to the results already published based on the NHANES conducted between 1988 and 1994. In NHANES 1999-2002, the prevalences of elevated ALT, AST, or either ALT or AST were 8.9%, 4.9%, and 9.8%, respectively, in the entire population and 7.3%, 3.6%, and 8.1%, respectively, after excluding participants who tested positive for hepatitis C virus (HCV) antibody or reported excessive alcohol consumption. Strong predictors of elevated ALT activity included increasing waist circumference and body mass index, alcohol consumption, male sex, Mexican American ethnicity, decreasing age, and presence of HCV antibody. In NHANES 1988-1994, which employed a different assay methodology, the prevalences of elevated aminotransferases were approximately half of the prevalences we describe in NHANES 1999-2002, but the predictors of elevated ALT activity were similar. The current prevalence of elevated ALT activity in the United States (8.9%) is more than double that of previously available estimates. This prevalence is very high (7.3%) even among persons without viral hepatitis C or excessive alcohol consumption and is strongly associated with risk factors for nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.

Flexible sigmoidoscopy: Diagnostic yield in 1015 patients

July 1984


11 Reads

The purposes of our study were to 1) identify the number of neoplastic lesions (adenomatous polyps and cancer) diagnosable by flexible sigmoidoscopy (FS) in patients with symptoms of colorectal disease and 2) determine the age distribution of patients in whom neoplastic lesions are detected by FS. A total of 1015 patients, ages 20-89 years, underwent FS because of the following indications: rectal bleeding, occult blood loss, anemia, change in bowel habit, weight loss, and abdominal pain. FS examined a mean distance of 49 +/- 2 cm (SEM) in an average time of 11.5 min. A bowel preparation of 2 Fleet enemas was adequate in 95% of patients and the examination was well tolerated by all age groups. There were no complications encountered. Eight-five neoplastic lesions were identified in 78 patients. Fifty-four percent of all adenomatous polyps and 61% of the cancers were detected beyond 20 cm. Neoplastic lesions were identified in all adult decades studied, ranging from 3.2% of patients aged 20-40 years, 8.0% for patients between 40 and 60, and 10.1% from 60 to 80; with a peak yield of 11.2% in the 7th decade. Cancer was diagnosed only in patients more than 40 years; 3.3% of patients over 60 had carcinoma compared to 0.8% in patients less than 60. These data provide evidence for the value of FS as a safe initial diagnostic procedure to detect neoplastic lesions in symptomatic patients of all adult age groups.

Shaib YH, El-Serag HB, Nooka AK, Thomas M, Brown TD, Patt YZ, Hassan MMRisk factors for intrahepatic and extrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma: a hospital-based case-control study. Am J Gastroenterol 102: 1016-1021

May 2007


129 Reads

The risk factors for cholangiocarcinoma are poorly defined in the United States. We evaluated hepatitis C virus (HCV), hepatitis B virus (HBV), and liver cirrhosis as risk factors for intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (ICC) and extrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (ECC). A case-control study in which cases were cholangiocarcinoma patients referred to the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center between 1992 and 2002 and controls were healthy individuals. Information about liver diseases, family history, diabetes, smoking, and alcohol consumption were collected on both groups. Blood from all participants was tested for HBV and HCV markers. We identified 246 cases (83 ICC and 163 ECC) and matched them to 236 controls. Compared with controls, ICC patients had a higher prevalence of anti-HCV antibodies (6.0%vs 0.8%, P=0.01), anti-HBc (9.6%vs 0%, P<0.0001), and heavy alcohol consumption (21.7%vs 3.8%, P<0.0001). The adjusted odds ratio and 95% confidence interval (CI) were 7.9 (95% CI 1.3-84.5), 28.6 (95% CI 3.9-1,268.1), and 5.9 (95% CI 2.1-17.4), respectively. Only heavy alcohol consumption was higher in patients with ECC than in controls (17.8%vs 3.8%, P=0.003). The prevalence of diabetes and smoking were not significantly different between cases (ICC or ECC) and controls. The prevalence of cirrhosis was higher in patients with ICC than those with ECC (24.1%vs 4.9%, P<0.0001). Liver cirrhosis and chronic HCV infection are possible risk factors for ICC but not ECC. Heavy alcohol consumption is a risk factor for both ICC and ECC.

Cheon YK, Cho YD, Moon JH, Jang JY, Kim YS, Lee MS, Lee JS, Shim CSDiagnostic utility of interleukin-6 (IL-6) for primary bile duct cancer and changes in serum IL-6 levels following photodynamic therapy. Am J Gastroenterol 102: 2164-2170

November 2007


84 Reads

Difficult diagnoses and a lack of effective therapy complicate biliary tract malignancies. Interleukin-6 (IL-6) is a human bile duct epithelium growth factor correlated with tumor burden. We evaluated the usefulness of serum IL-6 in the diagnosis of primary BDC and measured changes in serum IL-6 levels following photodynamic therapy (PDT). We prospectively measured serum IL-6 levels in patients with BDC (N = 26: 14 patients treated with PDT, 12 with biliary drainage alone), hepatocelluar carcinoma (HCC, N = 26), and healthy adults (N = 23). Serum IL-6 levels were measured by an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Patients with clinical conditions known to increase IL-6 levels were excluded. IL-6 was detected in all patients with BDC and HCC, and in 6 of 23 healthy adults. Median and mean levels of IL-6 were higher in patients with BDC than in both other groups (P < 0.001). Using a 25.8 pg/mL cutoff, IL-6 provided a diagnostic sensitivity of 73% and a specificity of 92%; positive and negative predictive values were 83% and 87%, respectively. Serum levels of IL-6 were correlated with tumor burden in BDC patients. One month after treatment of BDC with PDT, the mean IL-6 level decreased significantly from 282.1 +/- 121.8 to 38.2 +/- 9.9 pg/mL (P= 0.008). Serum IL-6 concentration is a useful addition to the available tests for the differential diagnosis of BDC, and serves as a marker for monitoring the response to treatment of BDC with PDT.

Are pANCA, ASCA, or Cytokine Gene Polymorphisms Associated with Pouchitis? Long-term Follow-up in 102 Ulcerative Colitis Patients

March 2004


69 Reads

Pouchitis is the most frequent complication after ileal pouch-anal anastomosis for ulcerative colitis. This study aims to analyze the frequency and characteristics of pouchitis in long-term follow-up in a large population, and to determine whether a significant association exists between five immunogenetic markers and pouchitis. From a population of over 500 ulcerative colitis patients who had undergone ileal pouch-anal anastamosis 5-12 yr earlier, 102 subjects participated in the study. Using clinical data obtained from interviews and chart reviews, patients were classified into three groups: no pouchitis; 1-2 episodes per year; and >2 episodes per year. Coded sera from the patients were analyzed for ulcerative colitis-associated perinuclear antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibodies and Crohn's disease-associated anti-saccharomyces cerevesiae antibodies. Interleukin-1 receptor antagonist, tumor necrosis factor (TNF), and lymphotoxin beta (lymphotoxin) polymorphisms were also analyzed. Pouchitis affected 49% of the study population. Antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibodies, anti-saccharomyces cerevesiae antibodies, and lymphotoxin-beta polymorphisms were not associated with pouchitis. Carriage of interleukin-1 receptor antagonist allele 2 was significantly greater among those without pouchitis than those with pouchitis. Patients without pouchitis had a significantly greater carriage rate of TNF allele 2. Perinuclear antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibodies and anti-saccharomyces cerevesiae antibodies are not correlated with pouchitis, but interleukin-1 receptor antagonist and TNF may play a role in its development. Further evaluation of these markers in pouchitis will require larger populations, long-term prospective observation, and studies that correlate polymorphisms with specific immunologic functions.

The clinical pattern of subclinical silent celiac disease: An analysis on 1026 consecutive cases

March 1999


60 Reads

The demographic, clinical, and epidemiological features of subclinical/silent celiac disease in Italy were analyzed in a multicenter study carried out with the participation of 42 centers, in the years between 1990 and 1994. One thousand twenty-six subclinical/silent patients (644 children and 382 adults, 702 women and 324 men) were considered eligible for the study. The prevalence of the subclinical/silent form increased significantly during the study both in adults (p < 0.001) and in children (p < 0.005), but its prevalence was always lower (p < 0.001) in children than in adults. This increase appears more likely due to a greater diagnostic awareness and to a better use of screening than to a higher number of subclinical/silent cases. Whereas in 1990 a significantly higher proportion (p < 0.001) of subclinical/silent celiac patients was diagnosed in Northern Italy rather than in Southern-Insular Italy, both in adults (46.7% vs 17.2%) and in children (22.0% vs 9.0%), in 1994 such a difference was no longer conspicuous. Both in children and in adults, iron-deficiency anemia appeared to be the most frequent extraintestinal symptom, followed by short stature in children and cutaneous lesions of dermatitis herpetiformis in adults. In 25.9% of the cases another disease was present, with a significantly higher frequency (p < 0.05) in adults (30.1%) than in children (20.7%). Diabetes and atopy appeared to be the most frequently associated conditions both in children and in adults. This study has provided an analysis of the largest series of subclinical/silent celiac disease reported to date. In Italy, this form is most frequently recognized in adults, and prospective studies will clarify whether the lower frequency observed in children is a real or apparent phenomenon.

Malignant melanomas in the small intestine: A study of 103 patients

May 1996


64 Reads

Malignant melanoma shows an unusual predilection to metastasize to the small intestine. A proportion of small bowel melanomas occur without history of an antecedent primary. We evaluated a group of patients with malignant melanoma in the small intestine to further our understanding of this disease. We reviewed 103 cases of malignant melanoma in the small intestine (77 surgical resections and 26 autopsies) accessioned at the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology between 1945 and 1991 for demographic, chronological, and pathological features. Mean age at time of primary was 45.6 yr for surgical and 34.1 yr for autopsy cases (p = 0.01). Mean age at time of small intestinal involvement was 52.2 yr for surgical and 42.7 yr for autopsies (p = 0.03). Primary lesions preceded intestinal disease by an average of 5.6 yr for surgical and 2.1 yr for autopsies. The age distribution of surgical patients with and without known primary melanomas at the time of small intestinal melanoma was not significantly different. The same was true for autopsy patients. Using regression analysis, the linear relationship of age at primary melanoma (AAP) on age at small intestinal melanoma (AASI) was given by AAP = 2.30 + 0.85 (AASI), and that of AASI on AAP was given by AASI = 3.94 + 1.02 (AAP) (r = 0.93 and p < 0.0001 for both regressions). Our data and results support the concept that small bowel involvement by melanoma, even without a known primary, is most probably metastatic. The age at which an unknown primary occurred in cases of intestinal melanoma, or the age at which intestinal metastasis may appear in cases with known primary melanoma, can be estimated. There appear to be two subsets of primary melanoma: one that occurs among younger patients and is more aggressive with rapid metastasis and early death and one that occurs among older patients, is more indolent, and metastasizes less rapidly.

Host TNF--1031 and -863 Promoter Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms Determine the Risk of Benign Ulceration after H. pylori Infection

June 2005


49 Reads

This study tested whether host genotypes of the tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha) promoter single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) could determine clinical and histological outcomes after Helicobacter pylori infection. A total of 524 dyspeptic patients, 424 with and 100 without H. pylori infection, were checked for TNF-alpha promoter SNP over the locus on -1031(T/C), -863(C/A), -857(C/T), -806(C/T), and -308(G/A) by sequence-specific oligonucleotide probe. Each patient received panendoscopy to take gastric biopsy to detect H. pylori infection and its related histology using the updated Sydney's system. Gastric TNF-alpha expressions were stained by immunohistochemistry. In H. pylori-infected patients, -1031C or -863A carriers of TNF-alpha promoter had more severe gastric neutrophil infiltration and TNF-alpha gastric staining than individuals with -1031TT or -863CC genotype, respectively (p<0.05). The multivariate logistic regression verified both -1031C and -863A carriers were independent risk factors to have duodenal ulcers and gastric ulcer without IM in the H. pylori-infected hosts (p<0.05). As compared to -863CC and -1031TT genotype combinations, the ulcer risk after H. pylori infection was 2.46 (95% CI: 1.32-4.59, p<or=0.00001) for the carriers with either -1031C or -863A allele, and even elevated to 6.06 (95% CI: 3.57-10.21, p<or=0.00001) for the individuals harboring both -863A and -1031C alleles. For patients with gastric ulcer, the 863CC genotype had a higher rate to have intestinal metaplasia than -863A carrier (p<or=0.005). TNF-alpha-1031 and -863 promoter SNP should be novel host factors to determine the gastric inflammation and risk of peptic ulceration upon H. pylori infection.

Enteric fever. A clinicopathologic study of 104 cases

February 1978


28 Reads

The records of 104 patients with culture-proven enteric fever were reviewed and evaluated as to the clinical signs, laboratory findings, pathologic features and complications of the disease. One patient with fatal disseminated intravascular coagulation and enteric fever is also presented. Fever and bradycardia were the leading clinical signs followed by splenomegaly, hepatomegaly and rose spots. The principal complications of enteric fever included anemia, typhoid hepatitis, relapse and bleeding. Evidence of typhoid hepatitis was present in 30% of the patients tested. The pathology consisted of typhoid nodules of variable frequency and size depending upon the severity of the condition. The relationship of typhoid hepatitis to relapse seems to be more than coincidental as four out of seven patients who had relapse had abnormal liver tests. The occurrence of disseminated intravascular coagulation in enteric fever is rare; however, awareness of such a potential complication may be life-saving to the patient.

Endoscopic Dilation of Benign Esophageal Strictures: Report on 1043 Procedures

July 1999


34 Reads

Endoscopic dilation is considered the best treatment for most cases of benign esophageal stricture, although the best dilation technique and the kind of stricture is the most amenable to treatment is still controversial. We report on our experience on a large series of patients treated by dilation without the aid of fluoroscopy and compare the results of this therapy among patients with strictures from different causes. Between 1992 and 1997, we performed 1043 dilation sessions on 153 patients. Treatment was considered adequate if the esophageal lumen could be dilated up to the size of a 42F catheter. If the stricture recurred after initial successful treatment, the stricture was dilated again up to a 42F catheter. One hundred forty patients (96 men, 44 women; mean age, 54.1 yr) were followed-up for a mean of 20.5 months (4 to 62 months). Stricture's etiology was postsurgical in 80 patients, peptic in 37, caustic in 12, and from other causes in 11 patients. Adequate dilation was achieved in 93.5% of the patients (131 of 140). Patients with peptic strictures needed a median of three sessions to be adequately dilated during follow-up in comparison to five sessions among patients with postsurgical or caustic strictures (p = 0.07). There were four perforations, with one death (2.8% and 0.7% per patient and 0.4% and 0.1% per session, respectively). Endoscopic dilation without the aid of fluoroscopy is safe and effective in relieving dysphagia caused by benign strictures of different causes, although repeated sessions are necessary because of stricture recurrence.

Ellis L, Shale MJ, Coleman MPCarcinoid tumors of the gastrointestinal tract: trends in incidence in England since 1971. Am J Gastroenterol 105(12): 2563-2569

December 2010


60 Reads

The epidemiology of gastrointestinal neuroendocrine tumors (GI-NETs) is poorly understood. Recent analyses have suggested changes in the incidence and distribution of such tumors, but have generally used data sets containing small patient numbers. We aimed to define trends in the epidemiology of GI-NETs in England over a 36-year period. We analyzed data from the national population-based cancer registry, which covers a population in excess of 50 million, over the period 1971-2006. In all, 10,324 cases of GI-NETs were identified. The overall incidence increased from 0.27 (per 100,000 per year) to 1.32 for men and from 0.35 to 1.33 for women. The anatomic distribution of tumors in the latest period analyzed was stomach 12%, small intestine 29%, appendix 38%, colon 13%, and rectum 8%. The largest absolute increase in incidence was seen in the appendix (from 0.03 to 0.41 in men; from 0.05 to 0.59 in women). The greatest relative increase was in gastric NETs, increasing 2,325% in men, and 4,746% in women. Overall, 48% of GI-NETs occurred in men. Sex-specific incidence rates for gastric, colonic, and rectal NETs are similar, whereas appendiceal lesions were more common in females, and small intestinal tumors in men. Large increases in the incidence of GI-NETs were observed, along with changes in anatomical distribution. Such changes may partly reflect changes in classification or improved detection through the increased use of endoscopy and imaging techniques. In view of the magnitude of these changes, particularly for gastric tumors, further studies to examine the underlying etiology of these changes are urgently indicated.

Park DI, Ryu S, Kim YH, Lee SH, Lee CK, Eun CS, Han DSComparison of guaiac-based and quantitative immunochemical fecal occult blood testing in a population at average risk undergoing colorectal cancer screening. Am J Gastroenterol 105: 2017-2025

September 2010


56 Reads

Although some studies have shown that the quantitative, immunochemical fecal occult blood test (FOBT) (qFIT) has better performance characteristics than the standard guaiac-based FOBT (GT) for identifying advanced colorectal neoplasia (ACRN), there is limited information on test performance of these tests in average-risk populations. Seven hundred seventy consecutive average-risk patients from four centers who were undergoing screening colonoscopy also provided stool samples. Stool specimens from three consecutive bowel movements were applied to a hemoccult II test card (Beckman Coulter, Fullerton, CA) and OC-SENSA MICRO (Eiken Chemical, Tokyo, Japan) sampling probes at the same time. We measured the diagnostic value of the qFIT for detecting an ACRN by using three criteria: sensitivity, specificity, and likelihood ratios. A receiver operating characteristic curve for determining the qFIT cutoff values and the number of tests that best discriminated between ACRNs and other findings were determined. Seventy-eight ACRNs were identified during colonoscopy. At all hemoglobin thresholds, the sensitivity of the qFIT was higher than that of the GT for cancer or ACRN. The sensitivity and specificity of the GT for detecting advanced adenomas, cancer, and ACRNs were 13.6%/92.4%, 30.8%/92.4%, and 16.7%/92.9%, respectively. Using the 100 ng/ml cut point and three-sample qFIT results, the sensitivity and specificity of the qFIT for detecting advanced adenomas, cancer, and ACRNs were 33.9%/90.6%, 84.6%/89.8%, and 43.7%/91.9%, respectively. The area under the curve for cancer indicated that using either 2 or 3 tests provided the best discrimination for cancer. The qFIT provides a higher sensitivity for detecting ACRN and cancer than the GT, and has an acceptable specificity that significantly reduces the need for colonoscopic evaluation in the screened population.

Serum and Colonic Mucosal Immune Markers in Irritable Bowel Syndrome (vol 107, pg 262, 2012)

March 2012


47 Reads

The American Journal of Gastroenterology is published by Nature Publishing Group (NPG) on behalf of the American College of Gastroenterology (ACG). Ranked the #1 clinical journal covering gastroenterology and hepatology*, The American Journal of Gastroenterology (AJG) provides practical and professional support for clinicians dealing with the gastroenterological disorders seen most often in patients. Published with practicing clinicians in mind, the journal aims to be easily accessible, organizing its content by topic, both online and in print., *2007 Journal Citation Report (Thomson Reuters, 2008)

Table 1 . Patient demography IVP group ( n =118) ORP group ( n =126) P -value
1079 Effects of Intravenous and Oral Esomeprazole in Prevention of Recurrent Bleeding From Peptic Ulcers After Endoscopic Therapy

April 2014


824 Reads

Objectives: The use of intravenous proton-pump inhibitors (PPIs) has shown to reduce recurrent bleeding and improve patient outcome after endoscopic hemostasis on patients with peptic ulcer. However, the efficacy of oral PPI is uncertain. Studies from Asia indicated that even oral PPI can achieve the same therapeutic effect. This study is designed to compare the efficacy of high-dose intravenous PPI to oral PPI in preventing recurrent bleeding after endoscopic hemostasis. Methods: This is a single-center, randomized-controlled, double-blind, and double-dummy study. Patients had Forrest IA/IB or IIA/IIB peptic ulcer bleeding and received endoscopic hemostasis before recruitment into the study. They were randomized to receive either (i) esomeprazole IV bolus at a dose of 80 mg plus infusion at 8 mg/h for 72 h and oral placebo every 12 h (IVP group), or (ii) IV placebo bolus plus infusion for 72 h and high-dose oral esomeprazole at a dose of 40 mg every 12 h (ORP group). Patients were followed up for 30 days after index bleeding. The primary end point was defined as the 30-day recurrent bleeding after successful endoscopic hemostasis. Results: A total of 118 patients were randomized to the IVP group and 126 to the ORP group in this study. In all, 39.8% in the IVP and 42.9% in the ORP group used non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug and/or aspirin before bleeding. In the IVP group (vs. ORP), Forrest IA represented 1.7% (5.6%), IB 41.5% (38.1%), IIA 52.5% (50.8%), and IIB 4.2% (5.6%). Recurrent bleeding in 30 days was reported in 7.7% of patients in the IVP group and 6.4% of patients in the ORP group, and the difference of recurrent bleeding was -1.3% (95% CI: -7.7%, 5.1%). There was no difference in blood transfusion, repeated endoscopic therapy, and hospital stay between the two groups. Conclusions: High-dose oral esomeprazole at 40 mg BID may be considered as a useful alternative to IV bolus plus infusion of esomeprazole in the management of ulcer bleeding in patients who are not candidates for high-dose IV infusion. However, as this study was stopped prematurely and was not designed as an equivalency trial, a much larger study would be necessary to document whether there is equivalency or non-inferiority of the two treatments in a heterogeneous patient population.

Figure 2: Meta-analysis plot of weighted clinical resolution rates of fecal microbiota transplantation in Clostridium difficile.
Table 2 . Study characteristics
Kassam Z, Lee CH, Yuan Y, Hunt RH.. Fecal microbiota transplantation for Clostridium difficile infection: systematic review and meta-analysis. Am J Gastroenterol 108: 500-508
Objectives: The clinical and economic burden of Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) is significant. Recurrent CDI management has emerged as a major challenge with suboptimal response to standard therapy. Fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) has been used as a treatment to reconstitute the normal microbial homeostasis and break the cycle of antibiotic agents that may further disrupt the microbiome. Given the lack of randomized-controlled trials (RCTs) and limitations in previous systematic reviews, we aimed to conduct a systematic review with robust methods to determine the efficacy and safety profile of FMT in CDI. Methods: An electronic search was conducted using MEDLINE (1946-March 2012), EMBASE (1974-March 2012) and Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (2012). The search strategy was not limited by language. Abstract data were excluded and only completed studies that underwent the full, rigorous peer-review process were included. Studies that used FMT via any delivery modality for laboratory or endoscopically proven CDI with clinical resolution as primary outcome were included. A sample size of 10 or more patients was a further criterion. Elements of the Centre for Reviews and Dissemination checklist and the National Institute of Clinical Excellence quality assessment for case series checklist were employed to determine study quality. Eligibility assessment and data extraction were performed by two independent researchers. Both unweighted pooled resolution rates (UPR) and weighted pooled resolution rates (WPR) were calculated with corresponding 95% confidence intervals (CI) for overall studies, as well as predefined subgroups. Results: Eleven studies with a total of 273 CDI patients treated with FMT were identified; no RCTs were found as none have been published. Two-hundred and forty-five out of 273 patients experienced clinical resolution (UPR 89.7%; WPR 89.1% (95% CI 84 to 93%)). There was no statistically significant heterogeneity between studies (Cochran Q test P=0.13, I(2)=33.7%). A priori subgroup analysis suggested that lower gastrointestinal FMT delivery (UPR 91.4%; WPR 91.2% (95% CI 86 to 95%)) led to a trend towards higher clinical resolution rates than the upper gastrointestinal route (UPR 82.3%; WPR 80.6% (95% CI 69-90%)) (proportion difference of WPR was 10.6% (95% CI -0.6 to 22%)). No difference in clinical outcomes was detected between anonymous vs. patient selected donors. There were no reported adverse events associated with FMT and follow-up was variable from weeks to years. Conclusions: FMT holds considerable promise as a therapy for recurrent CDI but well-designed, RCTs and long-term follow-up registries are still required. These are needed to identify the right patient, efficacy and safety profile of FMT before this approach can be widely advocated.

Katz PO, Gerson LB, Vela MF. Guidelines for the diagnosis and management of gastroesophageal reflux disease. Am J Gastroenterol 108:308-328.quiz 329

March 2012


979 Reads

The American Journal of Gastroenterology is published by Nature Publishing Group (NPG) on behalf of the American College of Gastroenterology (ACG). Ranked the #1 clinical journal covering gastroenterology and hepatology*, The American Journal of Gastroenterology (AJG) provides practical and professional support for clinicians dealing with the gastroenterological disorders seen most often in patients. Published with practicing clinicians in mind, the journal aims to be easily accessible, organizing its content by topic, both online and in print., *2007 Journal Citation Report (Thomson Reuters, 2008)

rs224136 on Chromosome 10q21.1 and Variants in PHOX2B, NCF4, and FAM92B Are Not Major Genetic Risk Factors for Susceptibility to Crohn's Disease in the German Population

April 2009


79 Reads

Recently, a North American genome-wide association study identified three novel gene variants in PHOX2B, NCF4, and FAM92B as well as one single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP; rs224136) in the intergenic region on chromosome 10q21.1 as being associated with Crohn's disease (CD). However, their influence on European CD patients as well as ulcerative colitis (UC) is unknown. Therefore we aimed to replicate these novel CD susceptibility variants in a large European cohort with inflammatory bowel disease and analyzed potential gene-gene interactions with variants in the NOD2/CARD15, IL23R, and ATG16L1 genes. Genomic DNA from 2,833 Caucasian individuals including 854 patients with CD, 476 patients with UC, and 1,503 healthy unrelated controls was analyzed for SNPs in PHOX2B (rs16853571), NCF4 (rs4821544), and FAM92B (rs8050910), including rs224136 on chromosome 10q21.1. In our study population, no association of PHOX2B (P=0.563), NCF4 (P=0.506), FAM92B (P=0.401), and rs224136 (P=0.363) with CD was found. Similarly, none of these SNPs was associated with UC. In contrast, all analyzed SNPs in NOD2/CARD15, IL23R, and ATG16L1 were strongly associated with CD with P values ranging from 5.0x10(-3) to 1.6x10(-22), but there was no epistasis with polymorphisms in PHOX2B, NCF4, FAM92B, and rs224136. In contrast to the North American population, PHOX2B, NCF4, FAM92B, and rs224136 are not associated with CD in the European population, whereas NOD2/CARD15, IL23R, and ATG16L1 are strongly associated with CD in both the North American and European populations, confirming these three genes as major CD susceptibility genes in Caucasian populations.

A Pilot Study of Interleukin-11 in Subjects with Chronic Hepatitis C and Advanced Liver Disease Nonresponsive to Antiviral Therapy

January 2005


27 Reads

To evaluate the effects of recombinant human interleukin (rhIL)-11 on liver histology in patients with chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection and advanced liver disease who had failed antiviral therapy. This was an open-label study of rhIL-11 (Neumega), Wyeth Laboratories, Collegeville, PA) at a dose of 5 microg/kg administered by subcutaneous injection daily for 12 wk. The primary efficacy endpoint was the change in the Knodell Histology Activity Index (HAI) between pre- and posttreatment liver biopsies. Secondary efficacy endpoints included changes in plasma alanine transaminase (ALT) concentrations and in the number of platelets. The Knodell HAI improved in 11 (55%) of the 20 subjects enrolled, with the mean score improving from 7.3 to 5.9 (p= 0.006). Eight subjects (40%) experienced significant improvement as defined by a decrease of at least two points in the HAI. IL-11 treatment was also associated with a decrease in ALT levels from a mean level of 113 IU/L at baseline to 65 IU/L at week 12 (p < 0.001). Platelet levels increased from a mean of 143 x 10(3)/microl at baseline to 198 x 10(3)/mul at week 12 of treatment (p < 0.001). Overall, rhIL-11 was well tolerated and no serious adverse events (AEs) were reported. The most common AE was edema of the lower extremities, which occurred in all subjects. The findings from this pilot study suggest that rhIL-11 may be beneficial for patients with hepatic inflammation and advanced liver disease associated with chronic HCV infection. Larger clinical trials are warranted to further evaluate the long-term antiinflammatory and antifibrotic effects of rhIL-11.

Autoimmune LKM1 hepatitis presenting in the form of recurrent acute episodes [11]

June 2002


16 Reads

The American Journal of Gastroenterology is published by Nature Publishing Group (NPG) on behalf of the American College of Gastroenterology (ACG). Ranked the #1 clinical journal covering gastroenterology and hepatology*, The American Journal of Gastroenterology (AJG) provides practical and professional support for clinicians dealing with the gastroenterological disorders seen most often in patients. Published with practicing clinicians in mind, the journal aims to be easily accessible, organizing its content by topic, both online and in print., *2007 Journal Citation Report (Thomson Reuters, 2008)

24 Weeks of interferon-ribavirin therapy should not routinely be given to all hepatitis C patients [11]

March 2002


10 Reads

The American Journal of Gastroenterology is published by Nature Publishing Group (NPG) on behalf of the American College of Gastroenterology (ACG). Ranked the #1 clinical journal covering gastroenterology and hepatology*, The American Journal of Gastroenterology (AJG) provides practical and professional support for clinicians dealing with the gastroenterological disorders seen most often in patients. Published with practicing clinicians in mind, the journal aims to be easily accessible, organizing its content by topic, both online and in print., *2007 Journal Citation Report (Thomson Reuters, 2008)

A Prospective Study to Compare a Symptom-Based Reflux Disease Questionnaire to 48-h Wireless pH Monitoring for the Identification of Gastroesophageal Reflux (revised 2-26-11)

June 2011


38 Reads

The gastroesophageal reflux disease questionnaire (GerdQ) is a validated questionnaire that identifies patients with gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). The aim of this study was to prospectively evaluate the association between GerdQ scores and 48-h wireless pH recording in patients studied either on or off acid suppression. Demographics, symptoms, acid suppressant use, and GerdQ scores were obtained from consecutive patients referred for wireless pH testing; 48-h pH data and endoscopic findings were recorded. Multivariate logistic regression models controlling for age, gender, and body mass index (BMI) were used to evaluate the association between GerdQ scores, acid reflux, and symptom association probability (SAP) scores. Wireless pH-metry was completed in 180 patients off proton pump inhibitor (PPI) (mean (s.d.) age, 50 (14) years; BMI, 28.08 (6.87) kg/m(2)) and 178 patients on PPI (mean (s.d.) age, 52 (14) years; BMI, 29.00 (6.90) kg/m(2)). Abnormal acid exposure was noted in 26% of patients on and 61% off PPI therapy. The odds of an abnormal study were 5.04 (95% confidence interval (CI), 3.14-8.11) times greater in patients studied off PPI therapy compared with patients studied on PPI therapy. The odds ratio of the SAP being >95% was 5.69 (95% CI, 3.36-9.64; P<0.001) for patients studied off PPI therapy compared with on PPI therapy. The mean (s.d.) GerdQ score was 7.48 (4.53) in patients on PPI therapy and 9.11 (1.25) in patients off PPI therapy (P<0.001). The odds of having an abnormal pH study was 1.08 (95% CI, 0.99-1.16; P=0.07) in patients studied off PPI therapy and 1.00 (95% CI, 0.92-1.08; P=0.94) in patients on PPI therapy for each point increase on the GerdQ. The odds of an abnormal SAP 95% in patients studied off PPI therapy was 1.18 (95% CI, 1.09-1.28; P<0.001) and 1.10 (95% CI, 1.01-1.21; P<0.03) in patients studied on PPI therapy for each point increase in the GerdQ score. Higher GerdQ scores were predictive of an abnormal pH study in patients studied off PPI therapy. Compared with wireless pH capsule monitoring, the GerdQ has only modest sensitivity and specificity at diagnosing acid reflux and thus cannot be recommended as a screening tool for GERD.

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