Publications by authors named "Noha Asem"

22 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Hepatic and gastrointestinal disturbances in Egyptian patients infected with coronavirus disease 2019: A multicentre cohort study.

World J Gastroenterol 2021 Oct;27(40):6951-6966

Endemic Medicine Department, Faculty of Medicine, Helwan University, Cairo 13544, Egypt.

Background: Various liver and gastrointestinal involvements occur in patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) at variable prevalence. Most studies report mild liver function disturbances correlated with COVID-19 severity, though liver failure is unusual.

Aim: To study liver and gastrointestinal dysfunctions in Egyptian patients with COVID-19 and their relation to disease outcomes.

Methods: This multicentre cohort study was conducted on 547 Egyptian patients from April 15, 2020 to July 29, 2020. Consecutive polymerase chain reaction-confirmed COVID-19 cases were included from four quarantine hospitals affiliated to the Egyptian ministry of health. Demographic information, laboratory characteristics, treatments, fibrosis-4 (FIB-4) index, COVID-19 severity, and outcomes were recorded and compared according to the degree of liver enzyme elevation and the presence of gastrointestinal symptoms. Follow-ups were conducted until discharge or death. Regression analyses were performed to determine the independent factors affecting mortality.

Results: This study included 547 patients, of whom 53 (9.68%) died during hospitalization and 1 was discharged upon his request. Patients' mean age was 45.04 ± 17.61 years, and 21.98% had severe or critical COVID-19. Alanine aminotransferase (ALT) and aspartate aminotransferase (AST) were available for 430 and 428 patients, respectively. In total, 26% and 32% of patients had elevated ALT and AST, respectively. Significant liver injury with ALT or AST elevation exceeding 3-fold was recorded in 21 (4.91%) and 16 (3.73%) patients, respectively. Male gender, smoking, hypertension, chronic hepatitis C, and lung involvement were associated with elevated AST or ALT. AST was elevated in 50% of patients over 60-years-old. FIB-4 was significantly higher in patients admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU), those with more severe COVID-19, and non-survivors. The independent variables affecting outcome were supplementary vitamin C intake (1 g daily capsules) [odds ratio (OR): 0.05, 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.008-0.337]; lung consolidation (OR: 4.540, 95%CI: 1.155-17.840); ICU admission (OR: 25.032, 95%CI: 7.110-88.128); and FIB-4 score > 3.25 (OR: 10.393, 95%CI: 2.459-43.925). Among 60 (13.98%) patients with gastrointestinal symptoms, 52 (86.67%) had diarrhoea. Patients with gastrointestinal symptoms were predominantly females with higher body mass index, and 50 (83.40%) patients had non-severe COVID-19.

Conclusion: Few Egyptian patients with COVID-19 developed a significant liver injury. The independent variables affecting mortality were supplementary vitamin C intake, lung consolidation, ICU admission, and FIB-4 score.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3748/wjg.v27.i40.6951DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8567470PMC
October 2021

Clinical evaluation of pregnant women with SARS-COV2 pneumonia: a real-life study from Egypt.

J Egypt Public Health Assoc 2021 Nov 4;96(1):29. Epub 2021 Nov 4.

MOHP, Cairo, Egypt.

Background: Knowledge about the outcome of COVID-19 on pregnant women is so important. The published literature on the outcomes of pregnant women with COVID-19 is confusing. The aim of this study was to report our clinical experience about the effect of COVID-19 on pregnant women and to determine whether it was associated with increased mortality or an increase in the need for mechanical ventilation in this special category of patients.

Methods: This was a cohort study from some isolation hospitals of the Ministry of Health and Population, in eleven governorates, Egypt. The clinical data from the first 64 pregnant women with COVID-19 whose care was managed at some of the Egyptian hospitals from 14 March to 14 June 2020 as well as 114 non-pregnant women with COVID-19 was reviewed.

Results: The two groups did not show any significant difference regarding the main outcomes of the disease. Two cases in each group needed mechanical ventilation (p 0.617). Three cases (4.7%) died among the pregnant women and two (1.8%) died among the non-pregnant women (p 0.352).

Conclusions: The main clinical outcomes of COVID-19 were not different between pregnant and non-pregnant women with COVID-19. Based on our findings, pregnancy did not exacerbate the course or mortality of COVID-19 pneumonia.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s42506-021-00092-zDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8567119PMC
November 2021

Anxiety, depression and coping strategies among chronic medical patients with coronavirus disease-2019: a multicenter follow-up cohort study.

J Ment Health 2021 Sep 30:1-9. Epub 2021 Sep 30.

Endemic medicine department, Faculty of Medicine, Helwan University, Helwan, Egypt.

Background: Studies have shown that COVID-19 patients experience high levels of anxiety, depression, and stress during the pandemic. Patients adopt different coping strategies to reduce their psychological distress.

Aim: To compare the immediate and long-term psychological impact of COVID-19 disease on patients with and without chronic medical illnesses (CMI) and identify coping styles of both groups during the peak of COVID-19 disease in Egypt.

Methods: This is a cohort follow-up study, that included an online survey consisting of General Health Questionnaire-12, Taylor Manifest Anxiety Scale, Beck Depression Inventory and Brief-COPE scale. The Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Checklist was completed after 6 months. Questionnaires were distributed to adult patients with a confirmed diagnosis of SARS-CoV-2 virus infection during their quarantine in Egypt.

Results: There was no significant difference between the two groups regarding anxiety and depression during the acute infection. Patients without CMI relied significantly on the use of informational support to cope with COVID-19 disease. Patients with CMI continued to show significant depressive symptoms after 6 months without significant PTSD symptoms.

Conclusions: COVID-19 has similar immediate psychological impact on patients with and without CMI. However, patients with CMI continue to show depression on long-term follow-up.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09638237.2021.1979491DOI Listing
September 2021

Pattern and determinants of COVID-19 infection and mortality across countries: An ecological study.

Heliyon 2021 Jul 8;7(7):e07504. Epub 2021 Jul 8.

Ministry of Health and Population, Egypt.

Background: This work aimed to identify the mathematical model and ecological determinants of COVID-19 infection and mortality across different countries during the first six months of the pandemic.

Methodology: In this study, authors used the online available data sources of randomly selected 18 countries to figure out potential determinants of COVID-19 transmissibility and mortality. The studied variables were environmental factors (daily average temperature, daily humidity), socioeconomic attributes (population age structure, count and density, human development index, per capita income (PCI), gross domestic product, internet coverage) mobility trends and chronic diseases. Researchers used the linear and exponential time series analysis, and further utilized multivariate techniques to explain the variance in the monthly increase in cases and deaths.

Results: In the first two months, the R of linear models for the cases and deaths were higher than that of the corresponding R of the exponential model. Later one, R of the exponential model was occasionally relatively higher than that of the linear model. The exponential growth rate of new cases was significantly associated with mobility trends (β = 0.00398, = 0.002), temperature (β = 0.000679, = 0.011), humidity (β = 0.000249, < 0.001), and the proportion of population aged ≥65 years (β = -0.000959, = 0.012). Similarly, the exponential growth rate of deaths was significantly associated with mobility trends (β = 0.0027, = 0.049), temperature (β = 0.0014, P < 0.001), humidity (β = -0.0026, P < 0.001), and PCI of countries. During this period, COVID-19 transmissibility was evident to be controlled as soon as social mobility is decreased by about 40% of the baseline over 3 months controlling for the other predictors.

Conclusion: Controlling of COVID-19 pandemic is based mainly on controlling social mobility. Role of environmental determinants like temperature and humidity was well noticed on disease fatality and transmissibility. Socio-demographic determinants of COVID-19 spread and fatality included modifiable risk factors like PCI and non-modifiable risk factors like ageing.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.heliyon.2021.e07504DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8264269PMC
July 2021

Utility of Lung Ultrasound in Decision making to prioritize hospital admission for COVID-19 patients: A Developing Country Perspective.

Curr Med Imaging 2021 May 6. Epub 2021 May 6.

Professor of Pulmonology, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt.

Background & Aims: In healthcare settings with limited resources, it is crucial to make a plan to prioritize hospital admission for patients affected by COVID-19. So, we tried to develop a novel approach for triaging COVID-19 patients and deciding the priority for hospital admission using Lung Ultrasound. In this study, we aimed to evaluate the efficacy of lung ultrasound in triaging suspected COVID-19 patients and assessment of the severity of COVID-19 pneumonia and its comparison with CT chest as the gold standard.

Method: This was a multicenter cross-sectional study enrolled on 243 COVID-19 confirmed patients presented to the emergency department in three major University hospitals in Egypt. Lung ultrasound was done by an experienced emergency physician or chest physician according to the local protocol of each hospital. Demographic, clinical, and laboratory data were collected from each patient. Each patient was subjected to CT chest and lung ultrasound.

Results: A total of 243 confirmed COVID-19 patients were enrolled in this study, with a mean age of 46.7+10.4 years. Ground glass opacity (GGO), subpleural consolidation, trans-lobar consolidation, and crazy paving were reported in chest CT scans of 54.3%, 15.2%, 11.1%, and 8.6% of patients, respectively. B-line artifacts were found in 81.1% of COVID-19 patients, which was of confluent pattern in 18.9% of patients. The lung ultrasound findings of 197 patients (81.1%) were completely coincident with those of CT with a Kappa agreement value of 0.77, and this offered a diagnostic sensitivity of 74 %, a diagnostic specificity of 97.9 %, positive predictive value (PPV) of 90.2% and negative predictive value (NPV) of 93.6 % for lung ultrasound in triaging COVID-19 patients. Adding O2 saturation to the findings of lung imaging, the accuracy of evaluation of lung ultrasound to differentiate between severe and non-severe lung diseases showed that ultrasound had 100% sensitivity and specificity.

Conclusion: Lung Ultrasound with Oxygen saturation is a very efficient tool for decision-making to prioritize hospital admission for patients affected by COVID-19 in healthcare settings with limited resources.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2174/1573405617666210506164243DOI Listing
May 2021

Clinical features and laboratory characteristics of patients hospitalized with COVID-19: single centre report from Egypt.

J Infect Dev Ctries 2020 12 31;14(12):1352-1360. Epub 2020 Dec 31.

Endemic Medicine Department, Faculty of Medicine, Helwan University, Cairo, Egypt.

Introduction: The recently discovered novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) has emerged in Wuhan, China, since January 2020. Egypt reported a low incidence of infection when compared with other countries. The aim of the study was to assess the characterization of COVID-19 infection among the Egyptian population.

Methodology: Data were collected from a single COVID-19 quarantine hospital in Cairo. A total number of 195 cases were included with their clinical, laboratory, and radiological data.

Results: Three different age groups behaved differently for COVD-19 infection. The pediatric age group was asymptomatic entirely, the middle age group (18-50 years) were asymptomatic in 53.3% of cases, while 77.9% of those above 50 years were symptomatic (p ≤ 0.001). The latter group had a high incidence of COVID-pneumonia in (83.1%), and moderate to critical presentations were encountered in 66.3% of them. Neutrophil to lymphocyte (N/L) ratio correlated directly with the age and case severity. C-reactive protein (CRP) and computed tomography scan chest (CT-chest) had added value on COVID-19 diagnosis in suspected cases.

Conclusions: In Egypt, patients above 50 years are at a higher risk for symptomatic COVID-19 infection and leaner for moderate to critical COVID-19 presentation. The triad of CT-chest, CRP, and N/L ratio could be an integrated panel for assessing disease severity.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3855/jidc.13156DOI Listing
December 2020

The awareness of neglected tropical diseases in a sample of medical and nursing students in Cairo University, Egypt: A cross-sectional study.

PLoS Negl Trop Dis 2020 11 18;14(11):e0008826. Epub 2020 Nov 18.

Public Health and Community Medicine Department, Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University, Egypt.

Neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) are a group of chronic diseases affecting 1.2 billion people worldwide, with more burden in the developing communities. Improving awareness about NTDs is a powerful affordable long-term intervention for infection control. In literature, there is a limited number of studies in the developing countries assessing the awareness of healthcare providers regarding these diseases. The present study aimed at assessing the awareness of a sample of Cairo University medical and nursing students regarding NTDs. A cross-sectional descriptive study was conducted on 184 medical and nursing students in Cairo University. An anonymous self-administered questionnaire in English language with an estimated completion time of 15 minutes was used for evaluation. It included question categories which cover the knowledge about NTDs and control measures as well as the willingness to participate in NTDs control activities. Content analysis was performed on the materials and specifications of the epidemiology course given to medical and nursing students. Out of the study participants, 26% knew the meaning of NTDs. The main source of their knowledge was social media followed by the epidemiology course. A percentage of 33% of the students agreed that NTDs are of public health importance in Egypt. Thirty four percent of the participants expressed their willingness to participate in control activities for NTDs. Comparing medical and nursing students, a higher percentage of the nursing students stated that NTDs are causing a public health problem in Egypt with a statistically significant difference (P value < 0.001), while a statistically significant higher percentage of medical students believed that the awareness level regarding NTDs in Egypt is low (P value = 0.002). Cairo University medical and nursing students in this study showed a gap in the level of knowledge regarding NTDs and their control activities which represents a great threat to the control of these diseases.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pntd.0008826DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7673504PMC
November 2020

Patient safety: knowledge, influence and attitude among physicians: an exploratory study.

J Egypt Public Health Assoc 2019 Sep 4;94(1):22. Epub 2019 Sep 4.

Public Health and Community Medicine Department, Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University, Kasr Al Ainy St, Cairo, 11956, Egypt.

Background: Patient safety is regarded as a global problem by which both developed and developing worlds are affected. It is defined as avoidance and prevention of patient injuries or adverse events, which could result during health care delivery. This study aimed to identify physicians' knowledge, influence, and attitude toward patient's safety in the faculty of medicine, Cairo university.

Materials And Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted on 187 postgraduate physicians of different specialties working in the faculty of medicine, Cairo University. Anonymous self-administered questionnaires were distributed. The questionnaire is one of a series of tools designed for evaluation of the pilot implementation of the World Health Organization patient safety curriculum for medical schools.

Results: Calculated attitude score was relatively higher than influence, then knowledge score (median scores were 4.25, 3.1, and 2.5 respectively). There was no difference in knowledge, attitude, and influence scores by different personal characteristics as gender, specialty, workplace, graduation year except for higher influence score among physician who received inpatient safety training (p = 0.016). There was a weak positive significant correlation between knowledge and influence scores and between influence and attitude scores (r = 0.25, p = 0.002; r = 0.27, p < 0.001 respectively).

Conclusion: Higher patient safety positive attitude than influence and knowledge is pinpointed in physicians of different specialties in the faculty of medicine, Cairo University. This raises the attention to the importance of implementation of continuing patient safety education programs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s42506-019-0022-9DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7364721PMC
September 2019

Predictors of Short-Term Outcome of Kasai Portoenterostomy for Biliary Atresia in Infants: a Single-Center Study.

Pediatr Gastroenterol Hepatol Nutr 2020 May 13;23(3):266-275. Epub 2020 May 13.

Department of Pediatrics, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt.

Purpose: The outcome predictors of Kasai portoenterostomy (KPE) for biliary atresia (BA) are controversial. This study aimed to identify possible short-term outcome predictors of KPE for BA in infants.

Methods: This retrospective study included infants with BA who underwent KPE between January 2015 and December 2017 and were followed up for at least 6 months after surgery at the Pediatric Hepatology Unit, Cairo University Pediatric Hospital, Egypt. The short-term outcome was jaundice clearance within 6 months following surgery. All data were compared between the jaundice free group and those with persistent jaundice to identify the predictors of jaundice clearance.

Results: The study included 75 infants. The mean age at the time of surgery was 82.43±22.77 days (range, 37-150 days), and 28 (37.3%) infants cleared their jaundice within 6 months postoperative. Age at surgery did not significantly affect the outcome (=0.518). Infants with persistent jaundice had significantly higher pre-operative levels of aspartate aminotransferase (AST) than those who were jaundice free (=0.041). Receiver operating characteristic curve analysis showed that preoperative AST ≤180 IU/L was predictive of a successful KPE, with sensitivity 74.5% and specificity 60.7%. Infants with bile plugs in liver biopsy had a 6-fold higher risk of persistent jaundice than those without bile plugs (95% confidence interval: 1.59-20.75, =0.008).

Conclusion: Jaundice clearance after KPE for BA can be predicted using preoperative AST and presence of bile plugs in liver biopsy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.5223/pghn.2020.23.3.266DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7231743PMC
May 2020

Hepatocellular Carcinoma Multidisciplinary Clinic-Cairo University (HMC-CU) score: A new simple score for diagnosis of HCC.

Arab J Gastroenterol 2020 Jun 18;21(2):102-105. Epub 2020 May 18.

Endemic Medicine Department, Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt.

Background And Study Aims: The risk of hepatocarcinogenesis depends on background liver factors, of which fibrosis is a major determinant. Serum markers and scores are of increasing importance in non-invasive diagnosis of hepatic fibrosis. Our aim was to predict the occurrence of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) using a non-invasive fibrosis score calculated using routine patient data.

Patients And Mthods: Our retrospective study included 1,291 hepatitis C related-HCC Egyptian patients (Group 1) recruited from the multidisciplinary HCC clinic, Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University in the period between February 2009 and June 2016 and 1072 chronic hepatitis C-naïve patients (Group 2) with advanced fibrosis (≥F3) and cirrhosis (F4). King score, Fibro Q score, Aspartate aminotransferase-to-platelet ratio index (APRI), AST to ALT ratio (AAR), LOK score, Göteborg University Cirrhosis Index (GUCI), Fibro-α and Biotechnology Research Center (BRC) scores were calculated for all patients. Regression analysis and receiver operating characteristics (ROC) were used to calculate the sensitivity, specificity and predictive values for significant scores with the best cut-off for predicting HCC. A regression equation was used to calculate predicted probabilities of HCC using the following variables; age, gender, haemoglobin, international normalised ratio (INR), albumin and alpha fetoprotein. The appropriate score cut-off points yielding optimal sensitivity and specificity were determined by ROC curve analysis.

Results: There was a highly significant difference between the two groups for all calculated scores (P = 0.0001). Our new score, the Hepatocellular Carcinoma Multidisciplinary Clinic-Cairo University (HMC-CU) score (Logit probability of HCC =  - 2.524 + 0.152*age - 0.121*Hb - 0.696*INR - 1.059*Alb + 0.022*AFP + 0.976*Sex. Male = 1, Female = 0), with a cut-off of 0.559 was superior to other scores for predicting HCC, having a sensitivity of 90% and specificity of 80.6%.

Conclusion: The HMC-CU score is a promising, easily calculated, accurate, cost-effective score for HCC prediction in chronic HCV patients with advanced liver fibrosis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ajg.2020.04.001DOI Listing
June 2020

Estimation of COVID-19 burden in Egypt.

Lancet Infect Dis 2020 08 27;20(8):896-897. Epub 2020 Apr 27.

Ministry of Health and Population, Cairo, Egypt.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S1473-3099(20)30319-4DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7185947PMC
August 2020

Assessment of health-related quality of life in Egyptian children and adolescents with congenital adrenal hyperplasia.

J Pediatr Endocrinol Metab 2020 Feb;33(2):295-304

Professor of Pediatric Endocrinology, Diabetes Endocrine and Metabolism Pediatric Unit, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt.

Background Congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH) is a chronic disorder causing adrenal insufficiency and hyperandrogenism affecting the quality of life (QOL). The objective of the study was to assess the health-related QOL (HRQOL) in Egyptian children and adolescents with CAH and to identify factors affecting it. Methods This cross-sectional study included 200 CAH patients (with 21-hydroxylase deficiency [21-OHD]) who were assessed according to their age, sex, clinical phenotype, timing of genitoplasty, hospital admissions within the last year, compliance to treatment, regularity of follow-up, presence of complications and hormonal control. HRQOL was assessed using the World Health Organization (WHO)QOL-BREF questionnaire with four domains analyzed independently including physical, psychological, social and environmental domains, with higher scores indicating better QOL. Results The study included 140 females and 60 males with a mean age of 6.6 ± 4.5 years, and 88% were salt-wasting (SW). Older patients had significantly lower QOL scores (r = - 0.151, p = 0.033). The physical domain correlated significantly with the degree of virilization (r = - 0.491, p = 0.001) and frequency of hospitalization (r = - 0.495, p < 0.001). The psychological domain was affected by age (r = - 0.157, p = 0.026) and timing of genitoplasty (r = - 0.326, p = 0.001), while the social domain was affected by age (r = -0.277, p < 0.005) and pubertal stage (r = - 0.195, p = 0.006). Females had lower scores at the psychological domain (p < 0.001), whereas males had lower scores at the physical domain (p = 0.003). Salt-losing patients had lower scores at the physical domain (p = 0.001). Patients with good hormonal control had higher scores at the physical domain (p = 0.03). Genitoplasty affected both psychological and social domains (p = 0.003 and 0.01, respectively). Patients with hypertension and hirsutism had lower QOL scores (p < 0.05). Conclusions HRQOL was relatively more affected in CAH patients with older age, poor hormonal control, high frequency of hospital admissions and those who developed complications.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1515/jpem-2019-0345DOI Listing
February 2020

Effect of Counteracting Lifestyle Barriers through Health Education in Egyptian Type 2 Diabetic Patients.

Open Access Maced J Med Sci 2019 Sep 20;7(17):2886-2894. Epub 2019 Aug 20.

Department of Community Medicine Research, Medical Division, National Research Centre, Giza, Egypt.

Background: Egypt is among the world top 10 countries in diabetes prevalence. It is the first country among the MENA region. Healthy lifestyle education and support help people with diabetes to improve health outcomes. Many physical and psychological barriers can hinder patients from following a healthy lifestyle.

Aim: This study aimed to examine the effect of lifestyle modification educational sessions in helping Egyptian patients to overcome main barriers of diabetes self-management through improving nutritional behaviours, physical activity, medication compliance, and blood glucose monitoring.

Methods: A cohort study included 205 patients with type 2 diabetes. Baseline assessment of patients' lifestyle behaviours and barriers using personal diabetes questionnaire of Louisville University, with both anthropometric and blood glucose assessment. Interventional lifestyle health education was provided weekly through multiple integrated techniques, followed by a post-intervention assessment to evaluate the effect of the health education sessions. Statistical analysis was done to identify any statistically significant difference before and after the health education intervention.

Results: There was a significant improvement of the post-education mean scores of the studied behaviours when compared with the pre-education scores of the participants' behaviours (p < 0.001). There was also a significant reduction in the barriers facing patients to diabetes self-management including nutritional barriers (P < 0.001), medication compliance barriers (P < 0.001) with a percent change (43%), physical activity barriers (p < 0.001), and blood glucose monitoring (p < 0.001) with a percent change (44%).There was a statistically significant positive correlation between improvement of medication compliance (P = 0.027), blood glucose monitoring(P = 0.045), and glycated haemoglobin of the study participants.

Conclusion: lifestyle modification education of type 2 diabetic patients can overcome the main barriers of following a healthy lifestyle and improve their anthropometric measures and blood glucose level.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3889/oamjms.2019.624DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6901843PMC
September 2019

Current contraceptive trends among married Egyptian women: a cross-sectional survey.

Eur J Contracept Reprod Health Care 2018 Oct 29;23(5):351-356. Epub 2018 Oct 29.

b Department of Public Health and Community Medicine , Cairo University , Cairo , Egypt.

Objective: The aim of our study was to assess the knowledge and attitudes of married Egyptian women towards the different methods of contraception, examining the role of employment and education in modulating contraceptive behaviour.

Methods: A cross-sectional survey was conducted among 2360 Egyptian women between 15 and 45 years of age who were attending outpatient clinics at a university hospital in Cairo between August 2017 and January 2018. The survey collected sociodemographic data as well as information on education, employment, knowledge about contraceptive methods, current and previous use of contraception, source of family planning advice and side effects from previous contraceptive use.

Results: The response rate was 90.2%. Current use of a contraceptive method was 38.3%. The intrauterine device (IUD) was the leading contraceptive method (50.7%), followed by oral contraceptives (OCs) (23.6%). Contraceptive prevalence was significantly higher among working women (p < .001), whose primary choice was OCs, while IUD use was significantly higher among non-working women (p < .001). Contraceptive prevalence was highest among women with secondary school education or higher (41.6%).

Conclusion: Both employment status and educational level of the surveyed women played a significant role in their contraceptive behaviour.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13625187.2018.1532074DOI Listing
October 2018

Hepatitis C virus treatment by direct-acting antivirals in successfully treated hepatocellular carcinoma and possible mutual impact.

Eur J Gastroenterol Hepatol 2018 08;30(8):876-881

Endemic Medicine and Hepatogastroentrology Department.

Background And Aims: Treatment of hepatitis C virus (HCV) after successfully treated hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) becomes possible with the introduction of direct-acting antivirals because of their favorable efficacy, safety, and short period of treatment. Few data are available on the results of treatment using different direct-acting antiviral regimens in successfully treated HCC and a lot of debate about its role in tumor recurrence.

Methods: Sixty-two HCV-related HCC patients were enrolled in the study after successfully treated HCC; the studied population included either Child-Pugh 'A' or 'B7'. The patients were subcategorized to receive one of the following regimens: group 1: sofosbuvir (SOF)+ribavirin (RBV) for 24 weeks, group 2: SOF+simeprevir for 12 weeks, group 3: SOF+daclatasvir for 24 weeks, and group 4: SOF+daclatasvir+RBV for 12 weeks. The overall median follow-up period is 12 months after treatment initiation.

Results: All treatment regimens were tolerable for all patients, with no reported major adverse events during treatment. The overall sustained virologic response rate was 64.5%, with the highest result in group 4 and the lowest result in group 1; 87.5 and 26.7%, respectively. HCC recurrence was observed in 42% of patients; 80.7% of these patients developed recurrence within 6 months of treatment initiation.

Conclusion: Treatment of HCV in successfully treated HCC is feasible, with the best results achieved using multiple direct-acting antivirals and RBV; a high rate of HCC recurrence was observed, especially within the first 6 months of treatment initiation (ClinicalTrials.gov no: NCT02771405).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/MEG.0000000000001152DOI Listing
August 2018

Novel scores combining AFP with non-invasive markers for prediction of liver fibrosis in chronic hepatitis C patients.

J Med Virol 2018 06 12;90(6):1080-1086. Epub 2018 Mar 12.

Department of Endemic Medicine and Hepatology, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt.

Serum levels of alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) were reported to increase in patients with significant or advanced hepatic fibrosis. Combination of non-invasive tests decreases the use of liver biopsy in large proportion of chronic HCV patients. The aim of the study was to compare and combine AFP with commonly used non-invasive fibrosis tests in novel scores for prediction of different stages of hepatic fibrosis. Six hundred and fifty two treatment naïve chronic hepatitis C patients were enrolled. Demographic data, basic pre-treatment laboratory tests including complete blood count (CBC), liver biochemical profile and renal functions test, international normalized ratio (INR) in addition to AFP, liver stiffness measurement (LSM) by Fibroscan and liver biopsies were retrospectively analyzed. AST to Platelet Ratio Index (APRI) and FIB-4 scores were calculated. Different predictive models using multivariate logistic regression analysis were generated and presented in equations (scores) composed of a combination of AFP, LSM plus FIB-4/APRI scores. AFP was correlating significantly with LSM, FIB-4, and APRI scores. Areas under receiver operating characteristic curves (AUROCs) for predicting significant hepatic fibrosis, advanced hepatic fibrosis, and cirrhosis were 0.897, 0.931, and 0.955, respectively, for equations (scores) containing AFP, LSM, and FIB-4. AUROCs for predicting significant hepatic fibrosis, advanced hepatic fibrosis and cirrhosis were 0.897, 0.929, and 0.959, respectively, for equations (scores) containing AFP, LSM, and APRI. The study shows that combining AFP to serum biomarkers and LSM increases their diagnostic performance for prediction of different stages of liver fibrosis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jmv.25026DOI Listing
June 2018

Establishing ultrasound based transient elastography cutoffs for different stages of hepatic fibrosis and cirrhosis in Egyptian chronic hepatitis C patients.

Arab J Gastroenterol 2017 Dec 27;18(4):210-215. Epub 2017 Nov 27.

Department of Endemic Medicine and Hepatogastroentrology, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt.

Background And Study Aim: Transient elastography is widely used to assess fibrosis stage in chronic hepatitis C (CHC). We aimed to establish and validate different transient elastography cut-off values for significant fibrosis and cirrhosis in CHC genotype 4 patients.

Patients And Methods: The data of 100 treatment-naive CHC patients (training set) and 652 patients (validation set) were analysed. The patients were subjected to routine pretreatment laboratory investigations, liver biopsy and histopathological staging of hepatic fibrosis according to the METAVIR scoring system. Transient elastography was performed before and in the same week as liver biopsy using FibroScan (Echosens, Paris, France). Transient elastography results were correlated to different stages of hepatic fibrosis in both the training and validation sets.

Results: ROC curves were constructed. In the training set, the best transient elastography cut-off values for significant hepatic fibrosis (≥F2 METAVIR), advanced hepatic fibrosis (≥F3 METAVIR) and cirrhosis (F4 METAVIR) were 7.1, 9 and 12.2 kPa, with sensitivities of 87%, 87.5% and 90.9% and specificities of 100%, 99.9% and 99.9%, respectively. The application of these cut-offs in the validation set showed sensitivities of 85.5%, 82.8% and 92% and specificities of 86%, 89.4% and 99.01% for significant hepatic fibrosis, advanced hepatic fibrosis and cirrhosis, respectively.

Conclusion: Transient elastography performs well for significant hepatic fibrosis, advanced hepatic fibrosis and cirrhosis, with validated cut-offs of 7.1, 9 and 12.2 kPa, respectively, in genotype 4 CHC patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ajg.2017.11.002DOI Listing
December 2017

Validation of Hepa-index as a non-invasive biomarkers panel for assessment of hepatic fibrosis in Egyptians with chronic hepatitis C.

Saudi Med J 2017 Nov;38(11):1137-1142

Primary Health Care Accreditation Unit, Saudi Central Board for Accreditation of Health Institutions, Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. E-mail.

Objectives: To validate the diagnostic performance of Hepa-Index in predicting different stages of hepatic fibrosis in Egyptian patients with chronic hepatitis C (CHC). Methods: Hundred treatment naïve chronic hepatitis C Egyptian patients were prospectively enrolled between June 2014 and January 2015. They were subjected to: platelet count, alpha-2-macroglobulin (α2-MG), total bilirubin, gamma glutamyl transpeptidase (GGT), total cholesterol, liver biopsy and histopathological staging of hepatic fibrosis according to METAVIR scoring system. Hepa-Index was calculated according to the formula: Hepa-Index=exp (-0.021 x platelet +1.65 x α2-MG+0.2 x total bilirubin + 0.026 x GGT -1.215 x total cholesterol) / (1+exp (-0.021 x platelet + 1.65 x α2-MG + 0.2 x total bilirubin +0.026 x GGT -1.215 x total cholesterol).  Results: Hepa-Index correlates positively with the stage of hepatic fibrosis. Cut off values of Hepa-Index were: 0.2 for predicting significant hepatic fibrosis (≥F2 METAVIR), 0.3 for severe hepatic fibrosis (≥F3 METAVIR) and 0.4 for cirrhosis (F4 METAVIR). Hepa-Index was able to detect significant fibrosis with sensitivity of 69.4%, specificity of 76.3% and AUROC of 0.803. Hepa-Index was also able to detect severe hepatic fibrosis with sensitivity of 79.2%, specificity of 64.5% and AUROC of 0.783 and cirrhosis with sensitivity of 81.8%, specificity of 68.5% and AUROC of 0.744. Conclusion: Hepa-Index is a good non-invasive biomarkers panel that can be used for non-invasive assessment of hepatic fibrosis in chronic hepatitis C patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.15537/smj.2017.11.21220DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5767618PMC
November 2017

FibroScan, APRI, FIB4, and GUCI: Role in prediction of fibrosis and response to therapy in Egyptian patients with HCV infection.

Arab J Gastroenterol 2016 Jun 25;17(2):78-83. Epub 2016 Jun 25.

Endemic Medicine and Hepatology Department, Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt.

Background And Study Aims: Multiple noninvasive methods have been used successfully in the prediction of fibrosis. However, their role in the prediction of response to hepatitis C virus (HCV) antiviral therapy is debatable. The aim of this study was to validate and compare the diagnostic performance of FibroScan, APRI (aspartate aminotransferase (AST)-to-platelet ratio index), FIB4, and GUCI (Göteborg University Cirrhosis Index) for the prediction of hepatic fibrosis and treatment outcome in HCV-infected patients receiving pegylated interferon and ribavirin (PEG-IFN/ribavirin).

Patients And Methods: This study included 182 Egyptian patients with chronic HCV infection. They were classified into two groups based on the stages of fibrosis: mild to significant fibrosis (F1-F2) and advanced fibrosis (F3-F4). The APRI, FIB4, and GUCI scores were calculated before the antiviral treatment. The FibroScan was performed for all patients before treatment.

Results: Stiffness and FIB4 have greater sensitivity and specificity in detecting advanced fibrosis of 80%, 77% and 88%, 84%, respectively. Based on multivariate regression analysis, FIB4, body mass index (BMI), and alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) level were found to be statistically significant predictors of advanced fibrosis (p-value: 0.000, 0.011, and 0.001, respectively) with odds ratio (OR: 3.184, 1.170, and 1.241, respectively). With respect to virological response, the stiffness, APRI, FIB4, and GUCI were significantly lower in sustained virological responders. However, these are not good predictors of response to PEG-IFN/ribavirin therapy. AFP was the only statistically significant predictor of response (p=0.002) with OR of 1.141 in multivariate regression analysis.

Conclusion: FibroScan and noninvasive scores such as APRI, FIB4, and GUCI can be used as good predictors of liver fibrosis in chronic hepatitis C. However, they are not good predictors of response to PEG-IFN/ribavirin therapy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ajg.2016.05.002DOI Listing
June 2016

Quadruple therapy versus standard triple therapy for eradication of Helicobacter pylori in Kuwait.

Arab J Gastroenterol 2015 Sep-Dec;16(3-4):131-5. Epub 2015 Nov 21.

Haya Al-Habeeb Gastroenterology Center, Department of Internal Medicine, Mubarak Al-Kabeer Hospital, Jabriya, Kuwait.

Background And Study Aims: Chronic infection caused by Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) is associated with chronic gastritis, peptic ulcer disease, and gastric cancer. Eradication of H. pylori reduces morbidity of chronic gastritis and incidence of gastric cancer in high-risk population. We aimed at testing the efficacy of clarithromycin-based triple therapy and bismuth-based quadruple therapy for eradicating H. pylori in patients with chronic gastritis in Kuwait.

Patients And Methods: A total of 218 dyspeptic patients from different countries who were proved to have chronic gastritis by endoscopy and gastric biopsy were enroled. All of them were naïve to H. pylori eradication therapy. They were randomised into two groups: group A, received triple therapy (omeprazole, amoxicillin, and clarithromycin) for 10days; and group B, received quadruple therapy (omeprazole, bismuth subcitrate potassium, tetracycline, and metronidazole) for 10days. All patients were tested for eradication of H. pylori by carbon-13 urea breath test 4weeks after treatment.

Results: Total response rate of eradication therapy in both groups was 77.5% (n=169). However, group B (n=100) had a higher eradication rate (88%) than group A (n=118) (68.6%). H. pylori eradication rate was significantly higher in males (84.2%) than females (70.2%) in both groups (p<0.01). There were no differences in eradication rates with regard to median age or nationality.

Conclusion: Bismuth-based quadruple therapy is more effective as a first-line therapy than clarithromycin-based triple therapy for eradicating H. pylori in patients with H. pylori-related chronic gastritis in Kuwait.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ajg.2015.09.007DOI Listing
September 2016

Value of Egy-Score in diagnosis of significant, advanced hepatic fibrosis and cirrhosis compared to aspartate aminotransferase-to-platelet ratio index, FIB-4 and Forns' index in chronic hepatitis C virus.

Hepatol Res 2015 May 6;45(5):560-70. Epub 2014 Aug 6.

Internal Medicine Department, Faculty of Medicine, Al-Azhar University, Cairo, Egypt; Egyptian Liver Fibrosis Study Group, Cairo, Egypt.

Aim: Serum markers and developed scores are of rising importance in non-invasive diagnosis of hepatic fibrosis. Aspartate aminotransferase-to-platelet ratio index (APRI), FIB-4 and Forns' index are validated scores used for diagnosis of liver fibrosis. The Egy-Score is a newly developed score for detection of hepatic fibrosis with promising results. We aimed to assess the accuracy of the Egy-Score in the diagnosis of significant fibrosis, advanced fibrosis and cirrhosis compared to APRI, FIB-4 and Forns' in chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) patients.

Methods: A retrospective study including 100 chronic hepatitis C naïve Egyptian patients was performed. Patients were classified according to stages of fibrosis into three groups: significant fibrosis (≥ F2), advanced fibrosis (≥ F3) and cirrhosis (F4). Egy-Score, APRI, FIB-4 and Forns' index were calculated. Regression analysis and receiver-operator curves were plotted to assess the sensitivity, specificity and predictive values for the significant scores with the best cut-off for diagnosis.

Results: An Egy-Score of 3.28 or more was superior to APRI, FIB-4 and Forns' index for detecting advanced fibrosis with a sensitivity of 91% and specificity of 78%. An Egy-Score of 3.67 or more was superior to APRI, FIB-4 and Forns' index for detecting cirrhosis with a sensitivity of 82% and specificity of 87%. Forns' index was superior to Egy-Score, FIB-4 and APRI for detecting significant fibrosis.

Conclusion: The Egy-Score is a promising, accurate, easily calculated, cost-effective score in the prediction of hepatic fibrosis in chronic HCV patients with superiority over APRI, FIB-4 and Forns' index in advanced hepatic fibrosis and cirrhosis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/hepr.12385DOI Listing
May 2015

Egy-score as a noninvasive score for the assessment of hepatic fibrosis in chronic hepatitis C: a preliminary approach.

Saudi J Gastroenterol 2014 May-Jun;20(3):170-4

Department of Internal Medicine, Al-Azhar University, Cairo; Egyptian Liver Fibrosis Study Group, Egypt.

Background And Aims: Egy-Score is a new noninvasive score for prediction of severe hepatic fibrosis in patients with chronic liver diseases. The aim of this study was to validate Egy-Score as a noninvasive score for predicting stage of hepatic fibrosis in a group of Egyptian chronic hepatitis C patients.

Patients And Methods: One hundred Egyptian patients with chronic hepatitis C were enrolled. Mean age was 40.25 ± 9.39 years. They were subjected to CA19-9, alpha-2-macroglobulin, total bilirubin, platelet count and albumin, liver biopsy, and histopathological staging of hepatic fibrosis according to METAVIR scoring system as part of their assessment for treatment. Egy-Score was calculated according to the following formula: Egy-Score = 3.52 + 0.0063 × CA19-9 + 0.0203 × age + 0.4485 × alpha-2-macroglobulin + 0.0303 × bilirubin - 0.0048 × platelet - 0.0462 × albumin. Egy-Score results were correlated to the stage of hepatic fibrosis.

Results: Egy-Score correlates positively with the stage of hepatic fibrosis (F0-F4). Egy-Score was able to differentiate significant hepatic fibrosis, severe hepatic fibrosis, and cirrhosis accurately. Cutoff values of Egy-Score were 2.91850 (for significant fibrosis), 3.28624 (for severe fibrosis), and 3.67570 (for cirrhosis). Sensitivity, specificity, and areas-under-ROC curve (AUROCs) were 75.8%, 68.42%, and 0.776 (for significant fibrosis "≥F2"), 91.67%, 77.63%, and 0.875 (for severe fibrosis "≥F3"), and 81.82%, 86.52%, and 0.874 (for cirrhosis "F4"), respectively.

Conclusion: Egy-Score is a useful noninvasive panel of surrogate biomarkers that could accurately predict different stages of hepatic fibrosis in patients with chronic hepatitis C.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4103/1319-3767.133003DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4067913PMC
March 2015
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