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1.  Mental symptoms in patients with cardiac symptoms and normal coronary arteries 
Open Heart  2014;1(1):e000093.
Objectives
Patients with chest pain and normal coronary arteries often suffer from physical and psychological symptoms. Therefore, this study aimed to examine the incidence of mental symptoms in patients with angiographic exclusion of a coronary heart disease.
Design
In 253 patients with angiographic exclusion of a coronary heart disease the type and intensity of their symptoms were evaluated before and after coronary angiography. In addition, the incidence of psychopathological symptoms was quantified by standardised questionnaires such as general anxiety and depression (HADS), heart-focused anxiety (CAQ), hypochondria (Whiteley Index) and somatoform disorder (SOMS) and quality of life (SF-12). Finally, the incidence of psychological symptoms in these patients was compared to the incidence in the normal population.
Results
Despite the absence of a coronary artery disease, 70% of patients continue to suffer from cardiac symptoms. The incidence of general anxiety was increased by 37% in women and by 22% in men in comparison to the normal population. Heart-focused anxiety was raised by 27%. Somatoform disorder appeared 120% more often in patients after cardiac catheterisation in comparison to the normal population. In addition, the incidence of hypochondria was elevated by 68% in patients after coronary angiography compared to normal population. This increased appearance of psychological symptoms was reflected in a significantly lower quality of life (SF-12) in patients with inconspicuous coronary angiography.
Conclusions
Patients with cardiac symptoms and normal coronary arteries more often suffer from mental symptoms in comparison to the healthy population.
doi:10.1136/openhrt-2014-000093
PMCID: PMC4244439  PMID: 25436115
CORONARY ARTERY DISEASE
2.  Chronic diarrhea as the initial clinical manifestation of light-chain amyloidosis with cardiac involvement despite negative duodenal and rectal biopsies 
Early and accurate diagnosis and a prompt initiation of treatment are critical for the prognosis of light-chain amyloidosis. The present article describes a case involving a 62-year-old patient who experienced unexplained, chronic diarrhea with negative duodenal and rectal biopsies. Serum immunofixation, a free light-chain assay, electrocardiography and echocardiography were performed after the patient developed syncope. The results of these diagnostic investigations showed characteristic signs of systemic amyloidosis. Cardiac and bone marrow biopsies confirmed the diagnosis of systemic light-chain amyloidosis. The chronic diarrhea was found to be due to an autonomic neuropathy of the enteric nervous system.
PMCID: PMC3718595  PMID: 23940440
Amyloidosis; Chronic diarrhea; Diastolic heart failure; Infiltrative cardiomyopathy; Peripheral neuropathy; Smoldering plasmacytoma
3.  Tophaceous Gout and Renal Insufficiency: A New Solution for an Old Therapeutic Dilemma 
Case Reports in Medicine  2011;2011:397646.
The prevalence of gout is increasing with increased life expectancy. Approximately half of the patients with gout have some degree of renal impairment. If both conditions persistently coexist, and in severe tophaceous gout, in particular, treatment has been difficult. We here report on the case of an 87-year-old woman, who had been suffering from recurrent gouty arthritis over 4 years. Monthly polyarthritis attacks were accompanied by subcutaneous tophi. Serum uric acid levels were constantly above 600 μmol/L (10 mg/dL). Allopurinol was no option because of intolerance, while benzbromarone was ineffective because of renal impairment. Therefore, the novel xanthin oxidase inhibitor febuxostat was started, achieving rapid control of serum urate levels (<360 μmol/L). After initial worsening of inflammation in the first weeks, gouty attacks stopped and all tophi resolved within the following 10 months. Renal function remained stable.
doi:10.1155/2011/397646
PMCID: PMC3099210  PMID: 21629805
4.  Comparison of external and intravascular cooling to induce hypothermia in patients after CPR 
Objective: Hypothermia has been shown to reduce neurologic deficits in patients after cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). It was not clear if intravascular cooling is superior to standard external cooling in inducing hypothermia. Goal of this study was to compare intravascular cooling with an automated cooling device with external cooling in everyday practice on a cardiac-care ICU (intensive care unit).
Methods: Patients after successful CPR for unwitnessed cardiac arrest were subjected to cooling with an automated cooling system (CoolGard, Alsius) after initial hemodynamic stabilization. Goal was to achieve a core temperature of 33°C. Monitored were the time intervals from admission to begin of cooling and from begin of cooling to target temperature. Data were compared retrospectively with those from patients subjected to external cooling.
Results: 31 consecutive patients treated with intravascular cooling were analyzed. Cooling was initiated at a mean time of 58 min after admission, and the target temperature of 33°C was achieved after a mean of 3.48 hours after the begin of cooling. In contrast, 49 patients treated with external cooling achieved a minimum temperature of 34.8°C only 9.2 hours after admission.
Conclusion: In everyday practice, intravascular cooling using an automated cooling system is superior for a rapid induction of hypothermia after cardiac arrest.
PMCID: PMC2703218  PMID: 19675695

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