Browsing by Author "Irusen, Elvis M."
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- ItemAdenocarcinoma the most common cell type in patients presenting with primary lung cancer in the Western Cape(Health and Medical Publishing Group (HMPG), 2011-05) Koegelenberg, Coenraad F. N.; Aubeelack, Kushroo; Nanguzgambo, Aldoph B.; Irusen, Elvis M.; Mowlana, Abdurasiet; Von Groote-Bidlingmaier, Florian; Bolliger, Chris T.Lung cancer is the most common cause of cancer-related mortality worldwide for men and women, causing approximately 1.2 million deaths per year. The absolute and relative frequencies of lung cancer have risen dramatically and in South Africa account for 17% of all cancer deaths. We found that adenocarcinoma is now the most common histological subtype of primary lung cancer diagnosed in the Western Cape and that almost 90% of all patients with non-small cell lung cancer have advanced local or metastatic disease at the time of diagnosis.
- ItemContemporary best practice in the management of malignant pleural effusion(SAGE Publications, 2018) Koegelenberg, Coenraad F. N.; Shaw, Jane A.; Irusen, Elvis M.; Lee, Y. C. GaryENGLISH ABSTRACT: Malignant pleural effusion (MPE) affects more than 1 million people globally. There is a dearth of evidence on the therapeutic approach to MPE, and not surprisingly a high degree of variability in the management thereof. We aimed to provide practicing clinicians with an overview of the current evidence on the management of MPE, preferentially focusing on studies that report patient-related outcomes rather than pleurodesis alone, and to provide guidance on how to approach individual cases. A pleural intervention for MPE will perforce be palliative in nature. A therapeutic thoracentesis provides immediate relief for most. It can be repeated, especially in patients with a slow rate of recurrence and a short anticipated survival. Definitive interventions, individualized according the patient’s wishes, performance status, prognosis and other considerations (including the ability of the lung to expand) should be offered to the remainder of patients. Chemical pleurodesis (achieved via intercostal drain or pleuroscopy) and indwelling pleural catheter (IPC) have equal impact on patient-based outcomes, although patients treated with IPC spend less time in hospital and have less need for repeat pleural drainage interventions. Talc slurry via IPC is an attractive recently validated option for patients who do not have a nonexpandable lung.
- ItemDoes access to private healthcare influence potential lung cancer cure rates?(Health and Medical Publishing Group, 2017) John, Thadathilankal-Jess; Plekker, Dante; Irusen, Elvis M.; Koegelenberg, Coenie F. N.Background. Numerous studies show a link between poor socioeconomic status (SES) and late-stage cancer diagnosis. However, this has not been consistently shown looking at non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) in isolation. Despite the extremely high prevalence of lung cancer and disparities in access to healthcare based on health insurance in South Africa, there is a paucity of data on the influence of health insurance (as a surrogate for SES) on stage at presentation of NSCLC. Objective. To assess the relationship between health insurance status (and invariably SES) and staging (and therefore resectability) of patients with primary NCSLC at the time of initial presentation. Methods. Health-insured patients with NSCLC (n=51) were retrospectively compared with NSCLC patients with no health insurance (n=532) with regard to demographics, tumour node metastasis (TNM) staging, and cell type at initial presentation. Results. Patients with no health insurance were younger (mean (standard deviation (SD)) 59.9 (10.1) years) than those with private health insurance (64.2 (9.6) years) (p=0.03). Poorly differentiated NSCLC was significantly more common in the privately health-insured group (23.6%) than among those with no health insurance (4.6%) (p<0.01). Six of 51 NSCLC patients (11.8%) with private health insurance presented with early-stage, potentially curable disease (up to stage IIIA), compared with 55 patients (10.3%) in the uninsured group (p=0.75). Conclusions. Access to private health insurance did not have a significant impact on stage at initial presentation. The only significant differences were the relatively advanced age at presentation and relatively higher percentage of poorly differentiated NSCLC seen in patients with health insurance.
- ItemThe global initiative for asthma 2019 recommendation for mild asthma – a critique(AOSIS, 2020-03-05) Irusen, Elvis M.Recognising that mild asthmatics are at risk of exacerbations and mortality, the Global Initiative for Asthma (GINA) issued an updated strategy in 2019. This was premised on two studies culminating in their recommendation that mild asthma should be treated by using a combination of a rapid and long-acting beta 2 agonist and an inhaled corticosteroid (ICS) administered as required. Their rationale is, however, debatable, as the studies actually showed that regular daily ICS administration was more effective for a number of asthma control endpoints. A patient-driven treatment strategy is also questionable, as there are a number of concerns about behaviour of patients suffering from asthma and perception of airway narrowing that should trigger medication intake but in fact does not do so. These deficiencies also influence a similar maintenance and reliever treatment (MART) approach that would be suboptimal. Intermittent ICS regimens are also inferior when compared to regular treatment. Not all asthmatics respond to the same dose of ICS. The best way to manage asthma is by adopting a step-up ICS approach, to encompass varying disease severity, with a long-acting beta agonist taken on a daily basis, ideally in a single combination inhaler.
- ItemIntegrated positron emission tomography/computed tomography for evaluation of mediastinal lymph node staging of non-small-cell lung cancer in a tuberculosis-endemic area : a 5-year prospective observational study(Health & Medical Publishing Group, 2015) Shaw, Jane A.; Irusen, Elvis M.; Von Groote-Bidlingmaier, Florian; Warwick, James M.; Jeremic, Branislav; Du Toit, Rudolf; Koegelenberg, Coenraad F. N.Background. Integrated positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET-CT) is a well-validated modality for assessing mediastinal lymph node metastasis in non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC), which determines management and predicts survival. Tuberculosis (TB) is known to lead to false-positive PET-CT findings. Objectives. To assess the diagnostic accuracy of PET-CT in identifying mediastinal lymph node involvement of NSCLC in a high TB-endemic area. Methods. Patients who underwent both PET-CT and lymph node tissue sampling for the investigation of suspected NSCLC were prospectively included in this observational study. Results were analysed per patient and per lymph node stage. A post-hoc analysis was performed to test the validity of a maximum standardised uptake value (SUVmax) cut-off for lymph node positivity. Results. PET-CT had a sensitivity of 92.6%, specificity of 48.6%, positive predictive value of 56.8% and negative predictive value (NPV) of 90.0% in the per-patient analysis. Diagnostic accuracy was 67.2%. Similar values were obtained in the per-lymph node stage analysis. TB was responsible for 21.1% of false-positive results. A SUVmax cut-off of 4.5 yielded an improvement in diagnostic accuracy from 64.0% to 84.7% compared with a cut-off of 2.5, but at the cost of decreasing the NPV from 90.6% to 83.5%. Conclusion. In a high TB-endemic area, PET-CT remains a valuable method for excluding mediastinal lymph node involvement in NSCLC. Patients with a negative PET-CT may proceed to definitive management without further invasive procedures. However, PET-CT-positive lymph nodes require pathological confirmation, and the possibility of TB must be considered.
- ItemScreening for hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis suppression in asthmatic children remains problematic : a cross-sectional study(BMJ, 2013) Zollner, Ekkehard Werner; Lombard, Carl J.; Galal, Ushma; Hough, Stephen; Irusen, Elvis M.; Weinberg, EugeneObjective To determine which parameter is the most useful screening test for hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal suppression in asthmatic children. Design Cross-sectional study. Setting Paediatric allergy clinics in Cape Town, South Africa. Participants 143 asthmatic children of mostly mixed ancestry, aged 5–12 years. Outcome measures Primary outcome measures included Spearman correlation coefficients (r) calculated between the postmetyrapone (PMTP) serum adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH), 11-deoxycortisol (11DOC), 11DOC+ cortisol (C) and height, weight, height velocity, weight velocity, change in systolic blood pressure from supine to standing, early morning urinary free cortisol (UFC), morning C, ACTH and dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEAS). Secondary outcome measures were the receiver operating characteristics (ROC) curve and the diagnostic statistics for the most promising test. Results All screening variables were weakly correlated with the three PMTP outcomes. Only DHEAS and UFC (nmol/m2) were statistically significant—DHEAS for PMTP ACTH and 11DOC (r=0.20, p=0.025 and r=0.21, p=0.017); UFC (nmol/m2) for PMTP 11DOC and 11DOC+C (r=0.19, p=0.033 and r=0.20, p=0.022). The area under ROC curve for DHEAS in the 5-year to 9-year age group was 0.69 (95% CI 0.47 to 0.92). At DHEAS cut-off of 0.2 µmol/L: sensitivity=0.88 (CI 0.47 to 1.00), specificity=0.61 (CI 0.42 to 0.78), positive predictive value=0.37 (CI 0.16 to 0.62), negative predictive value=0.95 (CI 0.75 to 1.00), accuracy=0.67 (CI 0.50 to 0.81), positive likelihood ratio=2.26 (CI 1.35 to 3.78), negative likelihood ratio=0.20 (CI 0.03 to 1.30). Conclusions No parameter is useful as a universal screening test. DHEAS may be suitable to exclude HPAS before adrenarche. Further research is needed to confirm these findings and identify factors, for example, genetic that may predict or protect against HPAS.
- ItemTricyclic antidepressant overdose necessitating ICU admission(Health and Medical Publishing Group (HMPG), 2012-05) Koegelenberg, Coenraad F. N.; Joubert, Zirkia J.; Irusen, Elvis M.Tricyclic antidepressant (TCA) overdose necessitating intensive care unit (ICU) admission remains a significant problem in the Western Cape. In this retrospective study, we reviewed the course of life-threatening TCA overdose in our centre to identify potential prognostic indicators. TCA levels >1 000 ng/ml were associated with QT and QRS prolongation and convulsions. However, no single parameter predicted non-survival. The overall mortality of TCA overdose was very low. Our findings should encourage clinicians to offer medical care including ICU admission, if necessary, to patients with TCA overdose.
- ItemThe utility of Xpert MTB/RIF performed on bronchial washings obtained in patients with suspected pulmonary tuberculosis in a high prevalence setting(BioMed Central, 2015-09-16) Barnard, Dewald A.; Irusen, Elvis M.; Bruwer, Johannes W.; Plekker, Dante; Whitelaw, Andrew C.; Deetlefs, Jacobus D.; Koegelenberg, Coenraad F. N.Background: Xpert MTB/RIF has been shown to have a superior sensitivity to microscopy for acid fast bacilli (AFB) in sputum and has been recommended as a standard first line investigation for pulmonary tuberculosis (PTB). Bronchoscopy is a valuable tool in diagnosing PTB in sputum negative patients. There is limited data on the utility of Xpert MTB/RIF performed on bronchial lavage specimens. Our aim was to evaluate the diagnostic efficiency of Xpert MTB/RIF performed on bronchial washings in sputum scarce/negative patients with suspected PTB. Methods: All patients with a clinical and radiological suspicion of PTB who underwent bronchoscopy between January 2013 and April 2014 were included. The diagnostic efficiencies of Xpert MTB/RIF and microscopy for AFB were compared to culture for Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Results: Thirty nine of 112 patients were diagnosed with culture-positive PTB. Xpert MTB/RIF was positive in 36/39 with a sensitivity of 92.3 % (95 % CI 78–98 %) for PTB, which was superior to that of smear microscopy (41 %; 95 % CI 26.0–57.8 %, p = 0.005). The specificities of Xpert MTB/RIF and smear microscopy were 87.7 % (95 % CI 77.4–93.9 %) and 98.6 % (95 % CI 91.6 %–99.9 %) respectively. Xpert MTB/RIF had a positive predictive value of 80 % (95 % CI; 65–89.9 %) and negative predictive value of 95.5 % (95 % CI 86.6–98.8 %). 3/9 patients with Xpert MTB/RIF positive culture negative results were treated for PTB based on clinical and radiological findings. Conclusion: Xpert MTB/RIF has a higher sensitivity than smear microscopy and similar specificity for the immediate confirmation of PTB in specimens obtained by bronchial washing, and should be utilised in patients with a high suspicion of pulmonary tuberculosis.
- ItemValidation of a severity-of-illness score in patients with tuberculosis requiring intensive care unit admission(Health & Medical Publication Group, 2015-05-27) Koegelenberg, Coenraad Frederik N.; Balkema, Cecile A.; Jooste, Ynishia; Taljaard, Jantjie J.; Irusen, Elvis M.Background. There is a paucity of data on the determinants of mortality due to tuberculosis (TB) in the intensive care unit (ICU). Objective. To develop a simple severity-of-illness score for use in patients with TB admitted to an ICU. Methods. A scoring system was generated by retrospectively identifying the four most significant and clinically unrelated predictors of mortality from an existing prospectively collected dataset (January 2012 - May 2013), and combining these with known predictors of poor outcome. Results. Of 83 patients admitted with TB, 38 (45.8%) died in the ICU. The four parameters identified from the retrospective analysis were: (i) HIV co-infection with a CD4 cell count <200/μL; (ii) a raised creatinine level: (iii) a chest radiograph showing diffuse parenchymal infiltrates/miliary pattern; and (iv) absence of TB treatment on admission. These were combined with septic shock and a low arterial partial pressure of oxygen/fractional inspired oxygen (P:F) ratio to generate a six-point severity-of-illness score (one point for each parameter). The scores for survivors were significantly lower than those for non-survivors (mean (standard deviation) 2.27 (1.47) v. 3.58 (1.08); p<0.01). A score of ≥2 was associated with significantly higher mortality than a score of <2 (7.1% v. 46.4%; odds ratio (OR) 15.03; 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.86 - 121.32; p<0.01), whereas a score of ≥3 was associated with a significantly higher mortality than a score of <3 (64.6% v. 20.0%; OR 7.29; 95% CI 2.64 - 20.18; p<0.01). Conclusion. The proposed scoring system identified patients at increased risk of dying from TB in the ICU. Further prospective studies are indicated to validate its use.