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Suppa M.,University of LAquila | Suppa M.,Free University of Colombia | Micantonio T.,University of LAquila | Di Stefani A.,Complesso Integrato Columbus | And 4 more authors.
Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology

Background Correctly diagnosing basal cell carcinoma (BCC) clinical type is crucial for the therapeutic management. A systematic description of the variability of all reported BCC dermoscopic features according to clinical type and anatomic location is lacking. Objectives To describe the dermoscopic variability of BCC according to clinical type and anatomic location and to test the hypothesis of a clinical/dermoscopic continuum across superficial BCCs (sBCCs) with increasing palpability. Methods Clinical/dermoscopic images of nodular BCCs (nBCCs) and sBCCs with different degrees of palpability were retrospectively evaluated for the presence of dermoscopic criteria including degree of pigmentation, BCC-associated patterns, diverse vascular patterns, melanocytic patterns and polarized light patterns. Results We examined 501 histopathologically proven BCCs (66.9% sBCCs; 33.1% nBCCs), mainly located on trunk (46.7%; mostly sBCCs) and face (30.5%; mostly nBCCs). Short fine telangiectasias, leaf-like areas, spoke-wheel areas, small erosions and concentric structures were significantly associated with sBCC, whereas arborizing telangiectasias, blue-white veil-like structures, white shiny areas and rainbow pattern with nBCCs. Short fine telangiectasia, spoke-wheel areas and small erosions were independently associated with trunk location, whereas arborizing telangiectasias with facial location. Scalp BCCs had significantly more pigmentation and melanocytic criteria than BCCs located elsewhere. Multiple clinical/dermoscopic parameters displayed a significant linear trend across increasingly palpable sBCCs. Conclusions Particular dermoscopic criteria are independently associated with clinical type and anatomic location of BCC. Heavily pigmented, scalp BCCs are the most challenging to diagnose. A clinical/dermoscopic continuum across increasingly palpable sBCCs was detected and could be potentially important for the non-surgical management of the disease. © 2015 European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology. Source

Grassi D.,Health Science University | Pontremoli R.,University of Genoa | Bocale R.,Complesso Integrato Columbus | Ferri C.,Health Science University | Desideri G.,Health Science University
High Blood Pressure and Cardiovascular Prevention

Gout is currently one of the most common causes of inflammatory arthritis in most industrialised countries. Apart from its high frequency, gout is associated with disability, poor quality of life and increased mortality and therefore represents an ever increasing public health concern. Substantial experimental and epidemiological evidence exists supporting the link between elevated levels of serum uric acid and several comorbidities including cardiovascular and kidney diseases. The cornerstone of effective gout management is long-term serum urate lowering below saturation concentrations (<6 mg/dL or <360 μmol/L) in order to promote crystal dissolution and prevent monosodium urate crystals formation. The management of gout includes not only pharmacological approaches, but also a number of nonpharmacologic interventions aiming at lessening attack risk, lowering uric acid levels and promoting general health while preventing the development of comorbidities. It is of great address whether urate lowering strategies can also lower cardiovascular risk and some preliminary studies in both animal and human subjects suggest that they might. Patient education and appropriate lifestyle advice are core aspects of management of hyperuricemia and gout. The two xanthine oxidase inhibitors currently available are effective as long-term urate lowering therapy although the greater efficacy and good tolerability of febuxostat as urate lowering agent has to be adequately considered especially when the reduction of serum uric acid levels to achieve the target is particularly ambitious and/or the presence of comorbidities increases the risk of adverse effects. Associated comorbidities and cardiovascular risk factors should be also addressed as an important part of the management of chronic hyperuricemia and gout. © 2014, Springer International Publishing Switzerland. Source

Lallas A.,Skin Cancer Unit | Kyrgidis A.,Skin Cancer Unit | Koga H.,Shinshu University | Moscarella E.,Skin Cancer Unit | And 14 more authors.
British Journal of Dermatology

Background The parallel ridge pattern (PRP) is considered the dermoscopic hallmark of acral melanoma (AM). However, it was recently shown that approximately one-third of AMs do not display a PRP dermoscopically, rendering their detection more troublesome. Objectives To investigate the diagnostic accuracy of dermoscopic criteria for the diagnosis of AM. Methods Dermoscopic images of consecutive cases of histopathologically diagnosed AMs and acral naevi with histopathological diagnosis or with at least 1 year of follow-up were evaluated by three independent investigators for the presence of predefined criteria. Crude and adjusted odds ratios and their corresponding 95% confidence intervals were calculated by univariate and multivariate logistic regression, respectively. Receiver operating characteristic curves were used to choose among competing classification schemes. Results In total 603 lesions (472 naevi and 131 AMs) were included in the study. A scoring system (named BRAAFF) composed of six variables was associated with optimal area under the curve and sensitivity for the diagnosis of AM. This method includes four positive (irregular blotches, ridge pattern, asymmetry of structures and asymmetry of colours) and two negative predictors (furrow pattern and fibrillar pattern). Conclusions The BRAAFF checklist significantly improves the diagnostic accuracy of dermoscopy for the diagnosis of AM. © 2015 British Association of Dermatologists. Source

Mastroiacovo D.,University of LAquila | Kwik-Uribe C.,Mars Inc | Grassi D.,University of LAquila | Necozione S.,University of LAquila | And 8 more authors.
American Journal of Clinical Nutrition

Background: Recent evidence has indicated that flavanol consumption may have many health benefits in humans, including improved cognitive activities. Objective: The aim was to evaluate the effect of flavanol consumption on cognitive performance in cognitively intact elderly subjects. Design: This was a double-blind, controlled, parallel-arm study conducted in 90 elderly individuals without clinical evidence of cognitive dysfunction who were randomly assigned to consume daily for 8 wk a drink containing 993 mg [high flavanol (HF)], 520 mg [intermediate flavanol (IF)], or 48 mg [low flavanol (LF)] cocoa flavanols (CFs). Cognitive function was assessed at baseline and after 8 wk by using the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE), the Trail Making Test (TMT) A and B, and the Verbal Fluency Test (VFT). Results: The changes in MMSE score in response to the 3 different treatments were not different. In contrast, there was a positive impact of the intervention on specific aspects of cognitive function. Mean changes (6SEs) in the time required to complete the TMT A and B after consumption of the HF (-8.6 ± 0.4 and -16.5 ± 0.8 s, respectively) and IF (-6.7 ± 0.5 and -14.2 ± 0.5 s, respectively) drinks significantly (P < 0.0001) differed from that after consumption of the LF drinks (-0.8 ± 1.6 and -1.1 ± 0.7 s, respectively). Similarly, VFT scores significantly improved among all treatment groups, but the magnitude of improvement in the VFT score was significantly (P < 0.0001) greater in the HF group (7.7 ± 1.1 words/60 s) than in the IF (3.6 ± 1.2 words/60 s) and LF (1.3 ± 0.5 words/60 s) groups. Significantly different improvements in insulin resistance (P < 0.0001), blood pressure (P < 0.0001), and lipid peroxidation (P = 0.001) were also observed for the HF and IF groups in comparison with the LF group. Changes in insulin resistance explained w17% of changes in composite z score (partial r2 = 0.1703, P < 0.0001). Conclusions: This dietary intervention study provides evidence that regular CF consumption can reduce some measures of age-related cognitive dysfunction, possibly through an improvement in insulin sensitivity. These data suggest that the habitual intake of flavanols can support healthy cognitive function with age. © 2015 American Society for Nutrition. Source

Biscetti F.,melli University Hospital | Porreca C.F.,melli University Hospital | Bertucci F.,melli University Hospital | Straface G.,University of Rome La Sapienza | And 7 more authors.
Acta Diabetologica

Aims: Osteoprotegerin (OPG) is a secretory glycoprotein that belongs to the tumor necrosis factor receptor family and plays a role in atherosclerosis. OPG has been hypothesized to modulate vascular functions; however, its role in mediating atherosclerosis is controversial. Epidemiological data in patients with cardiovascular disease (CVD) indicate that OPG serum levels are associated with several inflammatory markers, myocardial infarction events, and calcium scores, suggesting that OPG may be causative for CVD.Methods: The present study aimed to evaluate whether the OPG gene (TNFRSF11B) polymorphisms are involved in the development of peripheral arterial occlusive disease (PAOD) and critical limb ischemia (CLI) in patients with type 2 diabetes. This genetic association study included 402 diabetic patients (139 males and 263 females) with peripheral arterial occlusive disease and 567 diabetic subjects without peripheral arterial occlusive disease (208 males and 359 females). The T245G, T950C, and G1181C polymorphisms of the OPG gene were analyzed by polymerase chain reaction and restriction fragment length polymorphism.Results: We found that the T245G, T950C, and G1181C gene polymorphisms of the OPG gene were significantly (27.9 vs. 12.2 %, P < 0.01; 33.6 vs. 10.4 %, P < 0.01 and 24.4 vs. 12.7 %, P < 0.01, respectively) and independently (adjusted OR 4.97 (3.12–6.91), OR 7.02 (4.96–11.67), and OR 2.85 (1.95–4.02), respectively) associated with PAOD. We also found that these three polymorphisms act synergistically in patients with PAOD and are associated with different levels of risk for PAOD and CLI, depending on the number of high-risk genotypes carried concomitantly by a given individual.Conclusion: The TNFRSF11B gene polymorphisms under study are associated with PAOD, and synergistic effects between these genotypes might be potential markers for the presence and severity of atherosclerotic disorders. © 2014, Springer-Verlag Italia. Source

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