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Palermo, Italy

D'Ancona G.,IsMeTT
Interactive Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery | Year: 2010

Objective: The patient with a diagnosis of heparin-induced thrombocytopenia and thrombosis who requires urgent cardiac surgery represents a formidable challenge. Among the alternatives to heparin, argatroban has gained widespread use in non-cardiac surgery patients. The object of this communication is to report our recent experience with this agent during cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB) and to review the cases previously published in order to better define indications, dosage, monitoring and limitations in cardiac surgery patients. Methods: A case of mitral valve replacement where argatroban was used for anticoagulation during CPB is described. The literature on the subject is reviewed and the relationship between argatroban dosage and activated clotting time (ACT) is studied by regression analysis. Results: Clotting of the oxygenator requiring prompt replacement occurred after release of cross-clamp. Upon termination of the drug, ACT remained elevated beyond the expected half-life. A significative (P<0.05) relationship was disclosed between increasing dosage and ACT, while the same relationship was absent on decreasing dosage. Conclusions: Because of unresolved issues like the possibility of clotting in the extracorporeal circuit and prolonged anticoagulation after discontinuing the drug, at present, the use of argatroban as a substitute of heparin during CPB should be restricted to those cases where the other thrombin inhibitors are contraindicated. © 2010 Published by European Association for Cardio-Thoracic Surgery. Source

Le Treut Y.P.,Aix - Marseille University | Gregoire E.,Aix - Marseille University | Klempnauer J.,Medizinische Hochschule | Jouve E.,Aix - Marseille University | And 12 more authors.
Annals of Surgery | Year: 2013

OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to assess outcomes and indications in a large cohort of patients who underwent liver transplantation (LT) for liver metastases (LM) from neuroendocrine tumors (NET) over a 27-year period. BACKGROUND: LT for NET remains controversial due to the absence of clear selection criteria and the scarcity and heterogeneity of reported cases. METHODS: This retrospective multicentric study included 213 patients who underwent LT for NET performed in 35 centers in 11 European countries between 1982 and 2009. One hundred seven patients underwent transplantation before 2000 and 106 after 2000. Mean age at the time of LT was 46 years. Half of the patients presented hormone secretion and 55% had hepatomegaly. Before LT, 83% of patients had undergone surgical treatment of the primary tumor and/or LM and 76% had received chemotherapy. The median interval between diagnosis of LM and LT was 25 months (range, 1-149 months). In addition to LT, 24 patients underwent major resection procedures and 30 patients underwent minor resection procedures. RESULTS: Three-month postoperative mortality was 10%. At 5 years after LT, overall survival (OS) was 52% and disease-free survival was 30%. At 5 years from diagnosis of LM, OS was 73%. Multivariate analysis identified 3 predictors of poor outcome, that is, major resection in addition to LT, poor tumor differentiation, and hepatomegaly. Since 2000, 5-year OS has increased to 59% in relation with fewer patients presenting poor prognostic factors. Multivariate analysis of the 106 cases treated since 2000 identified the following predictors of poor outcome: hepatomegaly, age more than 45 years, and any amount of resection concurrent with LT. CONCLUSIONS: LT is an effective treatment of unresectable LM from NET. Patient selection based on the aforementioned predictors can achieve a 5-year OS between 60% and 80%. However, use of overly restrictive criteria may deny LT to some patients who could benefit. Optimal timing for LT in patients with stable versus progressive disease remains unclear. Copyright © 2013 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. Source

Scardulla F.,University of Palermo | Rinaudo A.,University of Palermo | Pasta S.,IsMeTT | Scardulla C.,IsMeTT
Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part H: Journal of Engineering in Medicine | Year: 2016

Dilated cardiomyopathy is a heart disease characterized by both left ventricular dilatation and left ventricular systolic dysfunction, leading to cardiac remodeling and ultimately heart failure. We aimed to investigate the effect of dilated cardiomyopathy on the pump performance and myocardial wall mechanics using patient-specific finite element analysis. Results evinced pronounced end-systolic wall stress on left ventricular wall of patients with dilated cardiomyopathy as compared to that of normal hearts. In dilated cardiomyopathy, both end-diastolic and end-systolic pressure-volume relationships of left ventricle and right ventricle were shifted to the right compared to controls, suggesting reduced myocardial contractility. We hereby propose that finite element analysis represents a useful tool to assess the myocardial wall stress and cardiac work, which are responsible for progressive left ventricular deterioration and poor clinical course. © 2015 Institution of Mechanical Engineers. Source

Left ventricular assist device thrombosis is a detrimental complication that, if not properly diagnosed and treated, can lead to low output syndrome and death. When ongoing thrombus formation is caused by inappropriate anticoagulation, timely identification is possible, and could perhaps be the key to successful treatment. Copyright © 2012 by the American Society for Artificial Internal. Source

Polidori P.,IsMeTT | Di Giorgio C.,University of Palermo | Provenzani A.,IsMeTT
Informatics in Primary Care | Year: 2012

Background Adverse drug events may occur as a result of drug-drug interactions (DDIs). Information technology (IT) systems can be an important decision-making tool for healthcare workers to identify DDIs. Objective The aim of the study is to analyse drug prescriptions in our main hospital units, in order to measure the incidence and severity of potentialDDIs. The utility of clinical decision-support systems (CDSSs) and computerised physician order entry (CPOE) in term of alerts adherence was also assessed. DDIs were assessed using a Micromedex1 healthcare series database. Methods The system, adopted by the hospital, generates alerts for prescriptions with negative interactions and thanks to an 'acknowledgement function' it is possible to verify physician adherence to alerts. This function, although used previously, became mandatory from September 2010. Physician adherence to alerts and mean monthly incidence of potential DDIs in analysed units, before and after the mandatory 'acknowledgement function', were calculated. Results The intensive care unit (ICU) registered the greatest incidence of potential DDIs (49.0%), followed by the abdominal surgery unit and dialysis (43.4 and 42.0%, respectively). The cardiothoracic surgery unit (41.6%), step-down unit (38.3%) and post-anaesthesia care unit (30.0%) were comparable. The operating theatre and endoscopy registered the fewest potential DDIs (28.2 and 22.7%, respectively). Adherence to alerts after the 'acknowledgement function' increased by 25.0% in the ICU, 54.0% in the cardiothoracic surgery unit, 52.5% in the abdominal surgery unit, 58.0% in the stepdown unit, 67.0% in dialysis, 51.0% in endoscopy and 48.0% in the post-anaesthesia care unit. In the operating theatre, adherence to alerts decreased from 34.0 to 30.0%. The incidence of potential DDIs after mandatory use of the 'acknowledgement function' decreased slightly in endoscopy (-2.9%), the abdominal surgery unit (-2.7%), dialysis (-1.9%) and the step-down unit (-1.4%). Conclusions Improving DDI alerts will improved patient safety by more appropriately alerting clinicians. © 2012 PHCSG, British Computer Society. Source

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