(1/12901) Colon and rectal anastomoses do not require routine drainage: a systematic review and meta-analysis.

OBJECTIVE: Many surgeons continue to place a prophylactic drain in the pelvis after completion of a colorectal anastomosis, despite considerable evidence that this practice may not be useful. The authors conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials to determine if placement of a drain after a colonic or rectal anastomosis can reduce the rate of complications. METHODS: A search of the Medline database of English-language articles published from 1987 to 1997 was conducted using the terms "colon," "rectum," "postoperative complications," "surgical anastomosis," and "drainage." A manual search was also conducted. Four randomized controlled trials, including a total of 414 patients, were identified that compared the routine use of drainage of colonic and/or rectal anastomoses to no drainage. Two reviewers assessed the trials independently. Trial quality was critically appraised using a previously published scale, and data on mortality, clinical and radiologic anastomotic leakage rate, wound infection rate, and major complication rate were extracted. RESULTS: The overall quality of the studies was poor. Use of a drain did not significantly affect the rate of any of the outcomes examined, although the power of this analysis to exclude any difference was low. Comparison of pooled results revealed an odds ratio for clinical leak of 1.5 favoring the control (no drain) group. Of the 20 observed leaks among all four studies that occurred in a patient with a drain in place, in only one case (5%) did pus or enteric content actually appear in the effluent of the existing drain. CONCLUSIONS: Any significant benefit of routine drainage of colon and rectal anastomoses in reducing the rate of anastomotic leakage or other surgical complications can be excluded with more confidence based on pooled data than by the individual trials alone. Additional well-designed randomized controlled trials would further reinforce this conclusion.  (+info)

(2/12901) The effect of chronic coffee drinking on blood pressure: a meta-analysis of controlled clinical trials.

We sought to assess the effect of coffee consumption on blood pressure in humans. Our data sources included a MEDLINE search of the literature published before December 1997, bibliography review, and expert consultation. We selected controlled trials in which coffee consumption was the only difference between the intervention and control groups, mean blood pressure change was reported for each group or period, and treatment lasted for >24 hours. Of 36 studies initially identified, 11 (522 participants) met these inclusion criteria. Information on sample size, study design, participant characteristics (gender, race, age, baseline blood pressure, and antihypertensive medications), and treatment results were abstracted by 3 reviewers using a standardized protocol. Treatment effect of coffee consumption on blood pressure was estimated with the use of a random-effects model. In the 11 trials, median duration was 56 days (range, 14 to 79 days), and median dose of coffee was 5 cups/d. Systolic and diastolic blood pressure increased by 2.4 (range, 1.0 to 3.7) mm Hg and 1.2 (range, 0.4 to 2.1) mm Hg, respectively, with coffee treatment compared with control. Multiple linear regression analysis identified an independent, positive relationship between cups of coffee consumed and subsequent change in systolic blood pressure, independent of age of study participants and study design characteristics. The effect of coffee drinking on systolic and diastolic blood pressure was greater in trials with younger participants. Our findings provide support for a relationship between coffee consumption and higher blood pressure. Trials of coffee cessation of longer duration and in persons with hypertension should be performed.  (+info)

(3/12901) One-year survival among patients with acute myocardial infarction complicated by cardiogenic shock, and its relation to early revascularization: results from the GUSTO-I trial.

BACKGROUND: Although 30-day survival is increased in patients with acute myocardial infarction complicated by cardiogenic shock who undergo coronary revascularization, the longer-term outcome in such patients and the duration of benefit from revascularization are unknown. METHODS AND RESULTS: We analyzed 30-day survivors of acute myocardial infarction in the Global Utilization of Streptokinase and Tissue-Plasminogen Activator for Occluded Coronary Arteries (GUSTO-I) trial and identified 36 333 who had not had cardiogenic shock (systolic blood pressure <90 mm Hg for >/=1 hour, group 1) and 1321 patients who had shock (group 2). Group 2 patients were older and sicker. At 1 year, 97.4% of group 1 patients were alive versus 88.0% of group 2 (P=0.0001). Among group 2 patients, 578 (44%) had undergone revascularization within 30 days (group 2A) and 728 (56%) had not (group 2B). Revascularization was not required by protocol but was selected by the attending physicians. At 1 year, 91.7% of group 2A patients were alive versus 85.3% of group 2B (P=0.0003). With the use of multivariable logistic regression analysis to adjust for differences in baseline characteristics of shock patients alive at 30 days, revascularization within 30 days was independently associated with reduced 1-year mortality (odds ratio 0.6, [95% confidence interval 0.4, 0.9], P=0.007). CONCLUSIONS: Most patients (88%) with acute myocardial infarction complicated by cardiogenic shock who are alive at 30 days survived at least 1 year. Shock patients who underwent revascularization within 30 days had improved survival at 1 year compared with shock patients who did not receive revascularization, even after adjustment for differences in baseline characteristics between the 2 groups.  (+info)

(4/12901) Racial differences in the outcome of left ventricular dysfunction.

BACKGROUND: Population-based studies have found that black patients with congestive heart failure have a higher mortality rate than whites with the same condition. This finding has been attributed to differences in the severity, causes, and management of heart failure, the prevalence of coexisting conditions, and socioeconomic factors. Although these factors probably account for some of the higher mortality due to congestive heart failure among blacks, we hypothesized that racial differences in the natural history of left ventricular dysfunction might also have a role. METHODS: Using data from the Studies of Left Ventricular Dysfunction (SOLVD) prevention and treatment trials, in which all patients received standardized therapy and follow-up, we conducted a retrospective analysis of the outcomes of asymptomatic and symptomatic left ventricular systolic dysfunction among black and white participants. The mean (+/-SD) follow-up was 34.2+/-14.0 months in the prevention trial and 32.3+/-14.8 months in the treatment trial among the black and white participants. RESULTS: The overall mortality rates in the prevention trial were 8.1 per 100 person-years for blacks and 5.1 per 100 person years for whites. In the treatment trial, the rates were 16.7 per 100 person-years and 13.4 per 100 person-years, respectively. After adjustment for age, coexisting conditions, severity and causes of heart failure, and use of medications, blacks had a higher risk of death from all causes in both the SOLVD prevention trial (relative risk, 1.36; 95 percent confidence interval, 1.06 to 1.74; P=0.02) and the treatment trial (relative risk, 1.25; 95 percent confidence interval, 1.04 to 1.50; P=0.02). In both trials blacks were also at higher risk for death due to pump failure and for the combined end point of death from any cause or hospitalization for heart failure, our two predefined indicators of the progression of left ventricular systolic dysfunction. CONCLUSIONS: Blacks with mild-to-moderate left ventricular systolic dysfunction appear to be at higher risk for progression of heart failure and death from any cause than similarly treated whites. These results suggest that there may be racial differences in the outcome of asymptomatic and symptomatic left ventricular systolic dysfunction.  (+info)

(5/12901) Safety of long-term therapy with ciprofloxacin: data analysis of controlled clinical trials and review.

We reviewed the literature and the manufacturer's U.S. clinical data pool for safety data on long-term administration of ciprofloxacin (Bayer, West Haven, CT). Only controlled clinical trials including patients treated for >30 days were selected. We identified 636 patients by literature search and 413 patients in the Bayer U.S. database who fulfilled our search criteria; the average treatment duration for these patients was 130 and 80 days, respectively. Main indications for long-term therapy were osteomyelitis, skin and soft-tissue infection, prophylaxis for urinary tract infection, mycobacterial infections, and inflammatory bowel disease. Adverse events, premature discontinuation of therapy, and deaths occurred at a similar frequency in both treatment arms. Most adverse events occurred early during therapy with little increase in frequency over time. As with short-term therapy, gastrointestinal events were more frequent than central nervous system or skin reactions, but pseudomembranous colitis was not observed. No previously unknown adverse events were noted. We conclude that ciprofloxacin is tolerated as well as other antibiotics when extended courses of therapy are required.  (+info)

(6/12901) Separate and joint effects of micronutrient deficiencies on linear growth.

Recent studies have investigated the effect of micronutrient deficiencies on growth stunting, with special attention toward the effect of zinc, iron, vitamin A and iodine deficiencies. In Mexico, the prevalence of growth stunting in children <5 y old is approximately 24%; it is higher in rural areas and lower in urban areas. In an initial study, the effect of zinc and/or iron supplementation on linear growth was investigated in a longitudinal, placebo-controlled design. After 12 mo of supplementation, there was no difference between the groups supplemented with zinc, iron or zinc plus iron and the placebo group. At baseline, 82% of the children in this study were deficient in at least two out of the five micronutrients that were determined, and 73% were anemic. In another study, a mixture of those micronutrients that were documented to be lacking in Mexican children was formulated in a supplement and given to Mexican children over a period of 12 mo in a longitudinal, placebo-controlled, supplementation design. Children in the low and medium socioeconomic status grew about 1 cm more than similar children in the placebo group. This difference was not found in children of high socioeconomic status. It is suggested that, in most cases, growth stunting is associated with marginal deficiencies of several micronutrients and that in populations with multiple micronutrient deficiencies, the effect on linear growth of supplementation with single nutrients will not be significant. Supplementation with multiple micronutrients is expected to be more effective, but even in that case the actual increment in height was less than the expected potential increment.  (+info)

(7/12901) Colorectal cancer mortality: effectiveness of biennial screening for fecal occult blood.

BACKGROUND: In 1993, a randomized controlled trial in Minnesota showed, after 13 years of follow-up, that annual fecal occult blood testing was effective in reducing colorectal cancer mortality by at least 33%. Biennial screening (i.e., every 2 years) resulted in only a 6% mortality reduction. Two European trials (in England and in Denmark) subsequently showed statistically significant 15% and 18% mortality reductions with biennial screening. Herein, we provide updated results-through 18 years of follow-up--from the Minnesota trial that address the apparent inconsistent findings among the trials regarding biennial screening. METHODS: From 1976 through 1977, a total of 46551 study subjects, aged 50-80 years, were recruited and randomly assigned to an annual screen, a biennial screen, or a control group. A screen consisted of six guaiac-impregnated fecal occult blood tests (Hemoccult) prepared in pairs from each of three consecutive fecal samples. Participants with at least one of the six tests that were positive were invited for a diagnostic examination that included colonoscopy. All participants were followed annually to ascertain incident colorectal cancers and deaths. RESULTS: The numbers of deaths from all causes were similar among the three study groups. Cumulative 18-year colorectal cancer mortality was 33% lower in the annual group than in the control group (rate ratio, 0.67; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.51-0.83). The biennial group had a 21% lower colorectal cancer mortality rate than the control group (rate ratio, 0.79; 95% CI = 0.62-0.97). A marked reduction was also noted in the incidence of Dukes' stage D cancers in both screened groups in comparison with the control group. CONCLUSION: The results from this study, together with the other two published randomized trials of fecal occult blood screening, are consistent in demonstrating a substantial, statistically significant reduction in colorectal cancer mortality from biennial screening.  (+info)

(8/12901) Report of a National Institutes of Health--Centers for Disease Control and Prevention workshop on the feasibility of conducting a randomized clinical trial to estimate the long-term health effects of intentional weight loss in obese persons.

A workshop was convened in 1997 by the National Institutes of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to consider the need for and feasibility of conducting a randomized clinical trial to estimate the long-term health effects of intentional weight loss in obese persons. Although the benefits of weight loss in obese individuals may seem obvious, little information is available showing that intentional weight loss improves long-term health outcomes. Observational studies may be unable to provide convincing answers about the magnitude and direction of the health effects of intentional weight loss. Workshop participants agreed that a well-designed randomized clinical trial could answer several questions necessary for developing a rational clinical and public health policy for treating obesity. Such information will ultimately provide needed guidance on the risks and benefits of weight loss to health care providers and payers, as well as to millions of obese Americans.  (+info)