Buccheri la Ferla Hospital

Palermo, Italy

Buccheri la Ferla Hospital

Palermo, Italy
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Carroccio A.,Hospital of Sciacca | Mansueto P.,University of Palermo | Iacono G.,Di Cristina Hospital | Soresi M.,University of Palermo | And 8 more authors.
American Journal of Gastroenterology | Year: 2012

Objectives: Non-celiac wheat sensitivity (WS) is considered a new clinical entity. An increasing percentage of the general population avoids gluten ingestion. However, the real existence of this condition is debated and specific markers are lacking. Our aim was thus to demonstrate the existence of WS and define its clinical, serologic, and histological markers.METHODS:We reviewed the clinical charts of all subjects with an irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)-like presentation who had been diagnosed with WS using a double-blind placebo-controlled (DBPC) challenge in the years 2001-2011. One hundred celiac disease (CD) patients and fifty IBS patients served as controls.Results: Two hundred and seventy-six patients with WS, as diagnosed by DBPC challenge, were included. Two groups showing distinct clinical characteristics were identified: WS alone (group 1) and WS associated with multiple food hypersensitivity (group 2). As a whole group, the WS patients showed a higher frequency of anemia, weight loss, self-reported wheat intolerance, coexistent atopy, and food allergy in infancy than the IBS controls. There was also a higher frequency of positive serum assays for IgG/IgA anti-gliadin and cytometric basophil activation in in vitro assay. The main histology characteristic of WS patients was eosinophil infiltration of the duodenal and colon mucosa. Patients with WS alone were characterized by clinical features very similar to those found in CD patients. Patients with multiple food sensitivity were characterized by clinical features similar to those found in allergic patients.CONCLUSIONS:Our data confirm the existence of non-celiac WS as a distinct clinical condition. We also suggest the existence of two distinct populations of subjects with WS: one with characteristics more similar to CD and the other with characteristics pointing to food allergy. © 2012 by the American College of Gastroenterology.


Carroccio A.,Giovanni Paolo II Hospital | Brusca I.,Buccheri La Ferla Hospital | Mansueto P.,Giovanni Paolo II Hospital | Mansueto P.,University of Palermo | And 7 more authors.
Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine | Year: 2013

Background: The diagnosis of food hypersensitivity (FH) in adult patients with gastrointestinal symptoms, beyond the immediate IgE-mediated clinical manifestations, is very often difficult. The aims of our study were to: 1) evaluate the frequency of FH in patients with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)-like clinical presentation; and 2) compare the diagnostic accuracy of two different methods of in vitro basophil activation tests. Methods: Three hundred and five patients (235 females, age range 18-66 years) were included and underwent a diagnostic elimination diet and successive double-blind placebo-controlled (DBPC) challenges. Two different methods of in vitro basophil activation tests (BAT) (CD63 expression after in vitro wheat or cow's milk proteins stimulation) were evaluated: one was performed on separated leukocytes, and the other on whole blood. Results: Ninety patients of the 305 studied (29.5%) were positive to the challenges and were diagnosed as suffering from FH. BAT on separate leukocytes showed a sensitivity of 86% and a specificity of 91% in FH diagnosis. BAT on whole blood showed a sensitivity of 15% - 20% and a specificity of 73% in FH diagnosis (p < 0.0001 compared to the other method). Conclusions: About one third of the IBS patients included in the study were suffering from FH and were cured on the elimination diet. The BAT based on CD63 detection on whole blood samples did not work in FH diagnosis and showed a significantly lower sensitivity, specificity and diagnostic accuracy than the assay based on separated leukocytes.


Carroccio A.,University of Palermo | Brusca I.,Buccheri La Ferla Hospital | Mansueto P.,University of Palermo | Soresi M.,University of Palermo | And 7 more authors.
Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology | Year: 2011

Background & Aims: Some patients with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)-like symptoms suffer from food hypersensitivity (FH); their symptoms improve when they are placed on elimination diets. No assays identify patients with FH with satisfactory levels of sensitivity. We determined the frequency of FH among patients with symptoms of IBS and the ability of fecal assays for tryptase, eosinophil cationic protein (ECP), or calprotectin to diagnose FH. Methods: The study included 160 patients with IBS, 40 patients with other gastrointestinal diseases, and 50 healthy individuals (controls). At the start of the study, patients completed a symptom severity questionnaire, fecal samples were assayed, and levels of specific immunoglobulin E were measured. Patients were observed for 4 weeks, placed on an elimination diet (without cow's milk and derivatives, wheat, egg, tomato, and chocolate) for 4 weeks, and kept a diet diary. Those who reported improvements after the elimination diet period were then diagnosed with FH, based on the results of a double-blind, placebo-controlled, oral food challenge (with cow's milk proteins and then with wheat proteins). Results: Forty of the patients with IBS (25%) were found to have FH. Levels of fecal ECP and tryptase were significantly higher among patients with IBS and FH than those without FH. The ECP assay was the most accurate assay for diagnosis of FH, showing 65% sensitivity and 91% specificity. Conclusions: Twenty-five percent of patients with IBS have FH. These patients had increased levels of fecal ECP and tryptase, indicating that they might cause inflammation in patients with IBS. Fecal assays for ECP could be used to identify FH in patients with IBS. © 2011 AGA Institute.


Carroccio A.,Internal Medicine | Carroccio A.,University of Palermo | Brusca I.,Buccheri La Ferla Hospital | Mansueto P.,University of Palermo | And 8 more authors.
Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology | Year: 2010

Background & Aims: A percentage of patients with symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) suffer from food hypersensitivity (FH) and improve on a food-elimination diet. No assays have satisfactory levels of sensitivity for identifying patients with FH. We evaluated the efficacy of an in vitro basophil activation assay in the diagnosis of FH in IBS-like patients. Methods: Blood samples were collected from 120 consecutive patients diagnosed with IBS according to Rome II criteria. We analyzed in vitro activation of basophils by food allergens (based on levels of CD63 expression), as well as total and food-specific immunoglobulin (Ig)E levels in serum. Effects of elimination diets and double-blind food challenges were used as standards for FH diagnosis. Results: Twenty-four of the patients (20%) had FH (cow's milk and/or wheat hypersensitivity); their symptom scores improved significantly when they were placed on an elimination diet. Patients with FH differed from other IBS patients in that they had a longer duration of clinical history, a history of FH as children, and an increased frequency of self-reported FH; they also had hypersensitivities to other antigens (eg, egg or soy). The basophil activation assay diagnosed FH with 86% sensitivity, 88% specificity, and 87% accuracy; this level of sensitivity was significantly higher than that of serum total IgE or food-specific IgE assays. Conclusions: A cytometric assay that quantifies basophils after stimulation with food antigens based on cell-surface expression of CD63 had high levels of sensitivity, specificity, and accuracy in diagnosing FH. This assay might be used to diagnose FH in patients with IBS-like symptoms. © 2010 AGA Institute.


Alessio M.G.,Riuniti Hospital | Tonutti E.,S Maria Della Misericordia Hospital | Brusca I.,Buccheri la Ferla Hospital | Radice A.,San Carlo Hospital | And 7 more authors.
Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition | Year: 2012

Objectives: Positivity of both immumoglobulin A anti-tissue transglutaminase (TTG) and anti-endomysium antibodies (EMA) has a positive predictive value of nearly 100% for celiac disease (CD). The objective of the present study was to evaluate whether patients of any age, with high pretest probability of CD and high titre of anti-TTG and EMA positivity, have a high probability of intestinal damage and may not require the biopsy for final diagnosis. Methods: A retrospective analysis of 412 consecutively referred patients, age range 10 months to 72 years, who underwent small-bowel biopsy for suspicion of CD and positivity to both anti-TTG and EMA, was performed at 4 Italian centers. Biopsies were evaluated independently by 2 pathologists using Marsh modified classification; in cases of dissimilar results, a third pathologist examined the biopsy. The final histological finding diagnosis was expressed as the prevalent or highest score assigned by the pathologist board. Results: Three hundred ninety-six patients (96.1%) had histological findings consistent with CD (grade 2 and 3a, 3b, or 3c of modified Marsh classification). An anti-TTG ratio ≥7 was able to identify with the 3 assays used (Celikey, anti-TTG immumoglobulin A, EuTTG) all of the patients with significant mucosal damage (Marsh ≥2) independent of age and sex; specificity and positive predictive value were 100%. An anti-TTG ratio >20 was more specific (99.8%) for identification of patients with villous atrophy (Marsh 3 a, b, or c). Conclusions: Patients with positivity of anti-TTG ≥7-fold cutoff, confirmed by positivity to EMA, have a high-degree probability of duodenal damage. In selected conditions, a duodenal biopsy may be avoided and a confirmed greatly positive anti-TTG result could be the basis to prescribe a gluten-free diet. Copyright © 2012 by European Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition and North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition.


Brusca I.,Buccheri La Ferla Hospital
Advances in Clinical Chemistry | Year: 2015

Among the adverse reactions caused by wheat, celiac disease (CD) is the longest studied and best-known pathology. The more recently defined non-celiac gluten sensitivity (NCGS) presents with symptoms which are often indistinguishable from CD. Diagnosis of CD is based on serologic, molecular, and bioptic testing. The IgA anti-transglutaminase (tTG) test is considered highly important, as it shows high sensitivity and specificity and its levels correlate to the degree of intestinal damage. Small bowel biopsy can be avoided in symptomatic patients with IgA anti-tTG levels above 10. × the manufacturer's cut-off. Recently, tests of anti-deamidated peptides of gliadin (DGP) have replaced classic anti-native gliadin (AGA) tests. DGP assays have a considerably higher diagnostic accuracy than AGA assays, especially in the IgG class, and can replace anti-tTG tests in patients with selective IgA deficiency. The combination of IgG anti-DGP plus IgA anti-tTG assays show greater sensitivity than a single test, with very high specificity. EMA tests have great diagnostic accuracy but are not recommended by all the latest guidelines because they are observer dependent. Biopsy must still be considered the gold standard for CD diagnosis. HLA-DQ genotyping can be used to screen asymptomatic children and in cases of histology/serology disagreement. About half of NCGS patients are DQ2 positive and have IgG AGA. To diagnose NCGS, first CD and wheat allergy must be excluded; then the wheat dependence of symptoms must be verified by a gluten-free diet and subsequent gluten challenge. © 2015 Elsevier Inc.


PubMed | Laboratory of Autoimmune Diseases, San Carlo Borromeo Hospital, Buccheri La Ferla Hospital, University of Padua and 12 more.
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Auto- immunity highlights | Year: 2016

Reflex tests are widely used in clinical laboratories, for example, to diagnose thyroid disorders or in the follow-up of prostate cancer. Reflex tests for antinuclear antibodies (ANA) have recently gained attention as a way to improve appropriateness in the immunological diagnosis of autoimmune rheumatic diseases and avoid waste of resources. However, the ANA-reflex test is not as simple as other consolidated reflex tests (the TSH-reflex tests or the PSA-reflex tests) because of the intrinsic complexity of the ANA test performed by the indirect immunofluorescence method on cellular substrates. The wide heterogeneity of the ANA patterns, which need correct interpretation, and the subsequent choice of the most appropriate confirmatory test (ANA subserology), which depend on the pattern feature and on clinical information, hinder any informatics automation, and require the pathologists intervention. In this review, the Study Group on Autoimmune Diseases of the Italian Society of Clinical Pathology and Laboratory Medicine provides some indications on the configuration of the ANA-reflex test, using two different approaches depending on whether clinical information is available or not. We further give some suggestions on how to report results of the ANA-reflex test.


PubMed | Allergy and Clinical Immunology Unit, Messina University, Buccheri La Ferla Hospital and CNR Institute of Biomedicine and Molecular Immunology Alberto Monroy
Type: | Journal: Clinical and molecular allergy : CMA | Year: 2015

In Italy, the nsLTP (Pru p 3) has been identified as the most frequent cause of food allergy and anaphylaxis. In order to estimate the risk assessment in peach allergy, we investigated the presence of correlations between the levels of sIgE to Pru p 3 with the severity of the clinical symptoms in two Pru p 3 positive populations from two different areas of Italy.133 consecutively Pru p 3positivepatients were recruited from South Italy, where the prevalence of PR-10 and profilin sensitization is low, and from North-East Italy, where the sensitization to pathogenesis related protein -10 (PR-10) and profilin is higher. Skin prick test (SPT) to peach extract and sIgE to peach panallergens were performed.All 133 patients were positive to SPT to peach extract and to sIgE to Pru p 3. The North-East population was simultaneously positive to Pru p 1 (42.8%) and Pru p 4 (12.7%), while no Southern patients were positive to PR-10 or to profilin. A significant difference in the levels of sIgE to Pru p 3 was found only in South Italy Pru p 3+patients vs. asymptomatic patients (p=0.01) and in mild reactions vs. severe reactions (p=0.0008). In South Italy patients, it was also found a significant correlation between the severity of the clinical reaction and the levels of sIgE to Pru p 3 (p=0.001).Level of sIgE to Pru p 3 indicates the possibility of development a severe food allergic reaction. Pru p 3 positive patients from different geographical areas and with different co-sensitizations to Pru p 1 and/or Pru p 4 could have a different risk assessment in peach allergy.


PubMed | Buccheri La Ferla Hospital, Anthea Hospital, University of Palermo, Maria Eleonora Hospital and 2 more.
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Journal of geriatric cardiology : JGC | Year: 2016

Aortic stenosis (AS) is a common valvular heart disease in the Western populations, with an estimated overall prevalence of 3% in adults over 75 years. To understand its patho-biological processes represents a priority. In elderly patients, AS usually involves trileaflet valves and is referred to as degenerative calcific processes. Scientific evidence suggests the involvement of an active atherosclerosis-like pathogenesis in the initiation phase of degenerative AS. To the contrary, the progression could be driven by different forces (such as mechanical stress, genetic factors and interaction between inflammation and calcification). The improved understanding presents potentially new therapeutic targets for preventing and inhibiting the development and progression of the disease. Furthermore, in clinical practice the management of AS patients implies the evaluation of generalized atherosclerotic manifestations (i.e., in the coronary and carotid arteries) even for prognostic reasons. In counselling elderly patients, the risk stratification should address individual frailty beyond the generic risk scores. In these regard, the co-morbidities, and in particular those linked to the global atherosclerotic burden, should be carefully investigated in order to define the risk/benefit ratio for invasive treatment strategies. We present a detailed overview of insights in pathogenesis of AS with possible practical implications.


PubMed | Buccheri La Ferla Hospital
Type: Journal Article | Journal: European review for medical and pharmacological sciences | Year: 2017

Epidemiological studies report that in Sicily reside about 30,000 citizens with a diagnosis of chronic hepatitis due to HCV. The availability of direct antiviral action (DAA) is a real therapeutic breakthrough, but the high cost of the therapeutic regimes limits their use and forced the National Health System to establish clinical priority for the treatment.The HCV Sicily Network is a web-based model of best medical practice, which was designed to improve the management and the treatment of HCV chronic hepatitis and cirrhosis. The network includes 41 centers and 84 gastroenterologists or infectivologists connected by a web platform that recorder the diagnosis and the clinic priority for the therapy.From March 2015 to September 2016, 9,965 patients (57% male, mean age 61 years, 34% with age over 70 years) have been recorded in the web platform, 3,319 patients completed the treatment, and 1,754 completed the 12 weeks of follow-up. The Sustained Virological Response (SVR) was achieved in 1,541 patients (87.8%), while 136 patients (7.7%) 77 patients (4.5%) experienced a virological relapse during the 12 weeks of follow-up.The HCV Sicily Network is an excellent system for the Regional Department of Health that can have a real estimation of patients that received an efficacy, but high-cost therapy.

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