Disabling injuries of the cervical spine in Argentine rugby over the last 20 years.
OBJECTIVE: To investigate the incidence and risk factors of disabling injuries to the cervical spine in rugby in Argentina. METHODS: A retrospective review of all cases reported to the Medical Committee of the Argentine Rugby Union (UAR) and Rugby Amistad Foundation was carried out including a follow up by phone. Cumulative binomial distribution, chi 2 test, Fisher test, and comparison of proportions were used to analyse relative incidence and risk of injury by position and by phase of play (Epi Info 6, Version 6.04a). RESULTS: Eighteen cases of disabling injury to the cervical spine were recorded from 1977 to 1997 (0.9 cases per year). The forwards (14 cases) were more prone to disabling injury of the cervical spine than the backs (four cases) (p = 0.03). Hookers (9/18) were at highest risk of injury (p < 0.01). The most frequent cervical injuries occurred at the 4th, 5th, and 6th vertebrae. Seventeen of the injuries occurred during match play. Set scrums were responsible for most of the injuries (11/18) but this was not statistically significant (p = 0.44). The mean age of the injured players was 22. Tetraplegia was initially found in all cases. Physical rehabilitation has been limited to the proximal muscles of the upper limbs, except for two cases of complete recovery. One death, on the seventh day after injury, was reported. CONCLUSIONS: The forwards suffered a higher number of injuries than the backs and this difference was statistically significant. The chance of injury for hookers was statistically higher than for the rest of the players and it was particularly linked to scrummaging. However, the number of injuries incurred in scrums was not statistically different from the number incurred in other phases of play. (+info)
Use of base excision sequence scanning for detection of genetic variations in St. Louis encephalitis virus isolates.
Twenty-two isolates of St. Louis encephalitis (SLE) virus of various geographical origins (Brazil, Argentina, Panama, Texas, Missouri, Maryland, California, and Florida) were examined for genetic variation by the base excision sequence scanning (BESS T-scan) method. A fragment was amplified in the envelope gene with the forward primer labeled in the PCR. The BESS T-scan method determined different clusters according to the profiles generated for the isolates and successfully grouped the isolates according to their geographical origins. Two major clusters, the North American cluster (cluster A) and the South and Central American cluster (cluster B), were defined. Two subgroups, the Texas-California subgroup (subgroup A1) and the Missouri-Maryland-Florida subgroup (subgroup A2), were distinguished within group A. Similarly, group B strains were subclustered to a South American subgroup (subgroup B1) and a Central American subgroup (subgroup B2). These results were consistent with those obtained by DNA sequencing analysis. The ability of the BESS T-scan method to discriminate between strains that present with high degrees of nucleotide sequence similarity indicated that this method provides reliable results and multiple applications for other virus families. The method has proven to be suitable for phylogenetic comparison and molecular epidemiology studies and may be an alternative to DNA sequencing. (+info)
Late diagnosis of retinoblastoma in a developing country.
OBJECTIVES: To assess the diagnostic process of retinoblastoma in a developing country. STUDY DESIGN: Prospective survey of 95 consecutive parents of patients with retinoblastoma. RESULTS: Fifty six parents consulted initially with a paediatrician. Their children tended to be younger, with a significantly higher frequency of advanced disease. Only half of the patients who consulted with a paediatrician were appropriately referred to an ophthalmologist; the paediatrician underestimated the complaints in the remainder. Children taken to an ophthalmologist were older and had less advanced disease. In about three quarters of these children, a diagnosis of retinoblastoma was suspected by the ophthalmologist on the first visit. Parents of patients with more advanced disease consulted significantly later. Poor parental education correlated significantly with late consultation. Lack of health insurance and living outside Buenos Aires City correlated significantly with an increased risk of extraocular disease. CONCLUSIONS: Paediatricians are the first health professional seen by most children with retinoblastoma. However, the diagnosis is not readily established. There is also a delay in consultation by parents, which is significantly longer in cases with advanced extraocular disease. Socioeconomic factors and access to health care might play a role in delayed diagnosis. (+info)
Prevalence of antibody to human T cell lymphotropic virus types 1/2 among aboriginal groups inhabiting northern Argentina and the Amazon region of Peru.
We carried out a seroepidemiologic survey to define the prevalence of human T cell lymphotropic virus types 1/2 (HTLV-1/2) infections among aboriginal populations from isolated regions of northern Argentina and the Amazon region of Peru. Antibodies against HTLV were measured with agglutination tests and confirmed with by an immunofluorescence assay (IFA) and Western blotting. Five (6.94%) of 72 samples from the Tobas Indians in Argentina were positive by the IFA; two samples were typed as HTLV-1 (2.78%), two as HTLV-2 (2.78%), and one (1.39%) could not be typed because it had similar antibody titers against both viruses. No positive samples were found among 84 Andinos Punenos and 47 Matacos Wichis Indians. Seroprevalences of 2.50% (1 of 40) and 1.43% (1 of 70) for HTLV-1 were observed among Wayku and San Francisco communities in the Amazon region of Peru, and seroprevalences of 4.54% (1 of 22) and 2.38% (1 of 42) for HTLV-2 were observed among Boca Colorada and Galilea communities. No serologic evidence of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection was found among the Indians tested. These results indicated the presence of HTLV-1 and HTLV-2 in the indigenous populations of Argentina and Peru. Moreover, the lack of HIV infection indicates that the virus has probably not yet been introduced into these populations. (+info)
Amplification of a 500-base-pair fragment from cultured isolates of Mycobacterium bovis.
The presence of a 500-bp fragment which amplifies a region from the genome of Mycobacterium bovis (J. G. Rodriguez, G. A. Meija, P. Del Portillo, M. E. Patarroyo, and L. A. Murillo, Microbiology 141:2131-2138, 1995) was evaluated by carrying out PCR on 121 M. bovis isolates. The M. bovis strains, previously characterized by culture and biochemical tests, were isolated from cattle in different regions of Argentina, Mexico, and Colombia. Four additional strains isolated from sea lions that belong to the M. tuberculosis complex were also included in the study. All of the isolates tested were PCR positive, rendering the expected 500-bp band and giving a correlation of 100% with previous microbiological characterization. Southern blot analysis revealed a common band of 1, 800 bp and a polymorphic high-molecular-mass hybridization pattern. The results show that this assay may be useful for diagnosis and identification of M. bovis in cattle. (+info)
Biochemical characteristics of a carbapenemase from an Acinetobacter baumannii isolate collected in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Three carbapenem-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii isolates were collected at a hospital in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Isoelectric focusing revealed multiple beta-lactamases, with two of the isolates showing identical profiles. A pI 6.9 carbapenemase with a molecular weight of 30 kDa was purified from one of these two isolates. The enzyme was predominantly a penicillinase, with its highest Vmax for oxacillin but highest Vmax/Km for benzylpenicillin. First-generation cephalosporins and imipenem were weaker substrates than penicillins, and oxyimino-aminothiazolyl cephalosporins were essentially stable. Meropenem-hydrolysing activity was not detected, despite resistance. The carbapenemase was inhibited by clavulanic acid and tazobactam, but not by EDTA. These kinetics place the enzyme into functional group 2; as an oxacillinase it could be placed in sub-group 2d or, as a zinc-independent carbapenemase, in sub-group 2f. (+info)
Clinical case definitions for Argentine hemorrhagic fever.
Argentine hemorrhagic fever (AHF) is a potentially lethal infection in Argentina. The case-fatality ratio is >15%, but treatment reduces the mortality rate to <1%. Diagnosis is based on clinical and laboratory criteria, but no case definition has been validated. A chart review was conducted for patients hospitalized with suspected AHF. Individuals with a fourfold rise in antibody titer were classified as cases. The combination of a platelet count of <100,000/mm3 and a white blood cell (WBC) count of <2,500/mm3 had a sensitivity and specificity of 87% and 88%, respectively, thus suggesting that the use of these criteria in a case definition would be helpful for epidemiological studies of AHF. The combination of a platelet count of <100,000/mm3 and a WBC count of <4,000/mm3 had a sensitivity of 100% and a specificity of 71%; the use of these criteria in a case definition should be helpful for screening patients for therapy with immune plasma in the region where AHF is endemic. (+info)
Dengue reemergence in Argentina.
Aedes aegypti, eradicated from Argentina in 1963, has now reinfested the country as far south as Buenos Aires. In 1997, four persons with travel histories to Brazil, Ecuador, or Venezuela had confirmed dengue, and surveillance for indigenous transmission allowed the detection of 19 dengue cases in Salta Province. These cases of dengue are the first in Argentina since 1916 and represent a new southern extension of dengue virus. (+info)