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1.  Korean Red Ginseng Saponin Fraction Rich in Ginsenoside-Rb1, Rc and Rb2 Attenuates the Severity of Mouse Collagen-Induced Arthritis 
Mediators of Inflammation  2014;2014:748964.
Despite a multitude of reports on anti-inflammatory properties of ginseng extracts or individual ginsenosides, data on antiarthritic effect of ginseng saponin preparation with mixed ginsenosides is limited. On the other hand, a combined therapy of safe and inexpensive plant-derived natural products such as ginsenosides can be considered as an alternative to treat arthritis. Our previous in vitro data displayed a strong anti-inflammatory action of red ginseng saponin fraction-A (RGSF-A). We, herein, report a marked antiarthritic property of RGSF-A rich in ginsenoside Rb1, Rc, and Rb2. Collagen-induced arthritic (CIA) mice were treated with RGSF-A or methotrexate (MTX) for 5 weeks. Joint pathology, serum antibody production and leukocye activation, cytokine production in the circulation, lymph nodes, and joints were examined. RGSF-A markedly reduced severity of arthritis, cellular infiltration, and cartilage damage. It suppressed CD3+/CD69+, CD4+/CD25+, CD8+ T-cell, CD19+, B220/CD23+ B-cell, MHCII+/CD11c+, and Gr-1+/CD11b+ cell activations. It further suppressed anti-CII- or anti-RF-IgG/IgM, TNF-α, IL-1β, IL-17, and IL-6 secretions but stimulated IL-10 levels in the serum, joint, or splenocyte. RGSF-A attenuated arthritis severity, modified leukocyte activations, and restored cytokine imbalances, suggesting that it can be considered as an antiarthritic agent with the capacity to ameliorate the immune and inflammatory responses in CIA mice.
PMCID: PMC4009181  PMID: 24833816
2.  Neurolymphomatosis of Brachial Plexus in Patients with Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma 
Neurolymphomatosis (NL) is a rare clinical disease where neoplastic cells invade the cranial nerves and peripheral nerve roots, plexus, or other nerves in patients with hematologic malignancy. Most NL cases are caused by B-cell non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL). Diagnosis can be made by imaging with positron emission tomography (PET) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). We experienced two cases of NL involving the brachial plexus in patients with NHL. One patient, who had NHL with central nervous system (CNS) involvement, experienced complete remission after 8 cycles of R-CHOP (rituximab, cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, vincristine, and prednisone) chemotherapy but relapsed into NL of the brachial plexus 5 months later. The other patient, who suffered from primary central nervous system lymphoma (PCNSL), had been undergoing chemoradiotherapy but progressed to NL of the brachial plexus.
PMCID: PMC3844222  PMID: 24324902
3.  Red-Koji Fermented Red Ginseng Ameliorates High Fat Diet-Induced Metabolic Disorders in Mice 
Nutrients  2013;5(11):4316-4332.
Fermentation of medicinal herbs improves their pharmacological efficacy. In this study, we investigated the effects of red-koji fermented red ginseng (fRG) on high-fat diet (HFD)-mediated metabolic disorders, and those effects were compared to those of non-fermented red ginseng (RG). fRG (500, 250 or 125 mg/kg), RG (250 mg/kg), simvastatin (10 mg/kg), silymarin (100 mg/kg) and metformin (250 mg/kg) were orally administered from 1 week after initiation of HFD supply for 84 days. The diameter of adipocytes in periovarian and abdominal fat pads and the thickness of the abdominal fat were significantly decreased by fRG treatment, while HFD-mediated weight gain was partly alleviated by fRG in a dose-dependent manner. Moreover, biochemical and histomorphometrical analyses clearly indicated that fRG significantly inhibited HFD-induced metabolic disorders such as hyperglycemia, hyperlipidemia, hepatopathy and nephropathy in a dose-dependent manner. More favorable pharmacological effects on HFD-mediated metabolic disorders were also observed with fRG compared to an equal dose of RG. This finding provides direct evidence that the pharmacological activities of RG were enhanced by red-koji fermentation, and fRG could be a neutraceutical resource for the alleviation of obesity-mediated metabolic disorders.
PMCID: PMC3847732  PMID: 24177708
fermentation; high fat diet; metabolic disorders; obesity; red-koji; red ginseng
4.  Evaluation of Prescribing Medications for Terminal Cancer Patients near Death: Essential or Futile 
The purpose of this study is to evaluate the prescription of essential or futile medications for terminal cancer patients during their final admission.
Materials and Methods
We conducted a retrospective review of the medical charts of terminally ill cancer patients admitted to the Hemato-oncology Department of two teaching hospitals from March 1, 2007 to December 31, 2009. Essential medications were based on the drugs listed by the International Association for Hospice and Palliative Care, while futile medications were defined when short-term benefit to patients with respect to survival, quality of life, or symptom control was not anticipated.
A total of 196 patients were included. Among essential medications, strong opioids were the most frequently prescribed drugs during the last admission (62.2% fentanyl, 44.3% morphine), followed by megestrol (46.0%), and metoclopramide (37.2%); 51% of gastric protectors were prescribed with potential futility. Anti-hypertensive and antiglycemic agents were administered to those who experienced arterial blood pressure below 90 mm Hg (47.3%) or presented with a single measurement of fasting glucose below 50 mg/dL (10.7%), respectively. Statins were prescribed to 6.1% (12/196) of patients, and 75% of those prescriptions were regarded as futile.
Our data suggest that effective prescription of essential medications and withdrawal from futile medications should be actively reconciled for improvement of a patient's end-of-life care.
PMCID: PMC3804734  PMID: 24155681
Drug therapy; Medical futility; Neoplasms; Symptom
5.  Angiomatoid Fibrous Histiocytoma as a Second Tumor in a Young Adult with Testicular Cancer 
Angiomatoid fibrous histiocytoma (AFH) is a rare soft tissue tumor, with a low-grade malignant potential, occurring predominantly in children and young adults. Association between AFH and other malignancies has been rarely reported. A 27-year-old man who presented with a palpable abdominal mass was diagnosed as having testicular cancer with multiple liver and lung metastases. At 16 months after chemotherapy, a follow-up computed tomographic scan revealed a supraclavicular mass measuring 3 cm in size, which was suspected to be a recurrence. The patient underwent surgical excision, and the mass was pathologically diagnosed as a AFH. The patient has had no local recurrence and no distant metastasis for 12 months after resection. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first case report of AFH as a second tumor in a patient with testicular cancer.
PMCID: PMC3804737  PMID: 24155684
Histiocytoma; Angiomatoid fibrous histiocytoma; Second primary neoplasms; Testicular neoplasms
6.  Spinal Cord Hemangioblastomas in von Hippel-Lindau Disease: Management of Asymptomatic and Symptomatic Tumors 
Yonsei Medical Journal  2012;53(6):1073-1080.
Standard treatment of asymptomatic spinal cord hemangioblastoma in von Hippel-Lindau (VHL) disease has yet to be established. The purpose of this study was to propose guidelines for the treatment of asymptomatic spinal cord hemangioblastomas in VHL disease.
Materials and Methods
VHL disease patients treated for spinal cord hemangioblastomas between 1999 and 2009 were included. All spinal cord hemangioblastomas were divided into three groups: Group 1, asymptomatic tumors at initial diagnosis followed with serial imaging studies; Group 2, asymptomatic tumors at initial diagnosis that were subsequently resected; and Group 3, symptomatic tumors at initial diagnosis, all of which were resected.
We identified 24 spinal cord hemangioblastomas in 12 patients. Groups 1, 2 and 3 comprised 13, 4 and 7 tumors, respectively. Group 1 exhibited a smaller tumor volume (257.1 mm3) and syrinx size (0.8 vertebral columns) than those of Group 2 (1304.5 mm3, 3.3 vertebral columns) and Group 3 (1787.4 mm3, 6.1 vertebral columns). No difference in tumor volume or syrinx size was observed between Groups 2 and 3. Five tumors in Group 1 were resected during follow-up because symptoms had developed or the tumor had significantly grown. Finally, among 17 asymptomatic tumors at the initial diagnosis, nine tumors were resected. Only one tumor of these nine tumors resulted in neurological deficits, while five of seven symptomatic tumors caused neurological deficits.
Selective resection of asymptomatic tumors before they cause neurological deficits might bring about better outcomes.
PMCID: PMC3481394  PMID: 23074104
Hemangioblastoma; spinal cord; treatment planning; von Hippel-Lindau disease
7.  Korean Red Ginseng Saponin Fraction Downregulates Proinflammatory Mediators in LPS Stimulated RAW264.7 Cells and Protects Mice against Endotoxic Shock 
Journal of Ginseng Research  2012;36(3):263-269.
Korean red ginseng has shown therapeutic effects for a number of disease conditions. However, little is known about the antiinflammatory effect of Korean red ginseng saponin fraction (RGSF) in vitro and in vivo. Therefore, in this study, we showed that RGSF containing 20(S)-protopanaxadiol type saponins inhibited nitric oxide production and attenuated the release of tumor necrotic factor (TNF)-α, interleukin (IL)-6, granulocyte monocyte colony stimulating factor (GMCSF), and macrophage chemo-attractant protein-1 in lipopolysaccharide (LPS) stimulated murine macrophage RAW264.7 cells. Moreover, RGSF down-regulated the mRNA expressions of inducible nitric oxide synthase, cyclooxyginase-2, IL-1β, TNF-α, GMCSF, and IL-6. Furthermore, RGSF reduced the level of TNF-α in the serum and protected mice against LPS mediated endotoxic shock. In conclusion, these results indicated that ginsenosides from RGSF and their metabolites could be potential sources of therapeutic agents against inflammation.
PMCID: PMC3659593  PMID: 23717127
Panax ginseng; 20(S)-protopanaxadiol saponins; Pro-inflammatory cytokines; Endotoxic shock; Macrophages
8.  Low-dose external beam radiotherapy as a postoperative treatment for patients with diffuse pigmented villonodular synovitis of the knee 
Acta Orthopaedica  2012;83(3):256-260.
Background and purpose
Pigmented villonodular synovitis (PVNS) is a rare proliferative disorder involving synovial membranes, and patients with PVNS have a variable prognosis. We retrospectively analyzed clinical outcomes after synovectomy plus low-dose external beam radiotherapy for diffuse PVNS of the knee.
We reviewed the medical records of 23 patients who underwent postoperative radiotherapy between 1998 and 2007. 19 patients had primary disease and 4 had recurrent disease with an average of 2.5 prior surgeries. After synovectomy (17 arthroscopic surgeries; 6 open), all 23 patients received 4-MV or 6-MV external beam radiotherapy with a median dose of 20 (12–34) Gy in 10 fractions.
At a median follow-up of 9 (0.8–12) years, 4 patients had recurrent disease, with a median disease-free interval of 5 years. Of these 4 patients, 3 received salvage synovectomy and regained local control. Univariate analysis showed that age, sex, history of trauma, and total dose of radiation were not predictive of local control. 22 patients reported excellent or good joint function, and 1 who refused salvage synovectomy had poor joint function. None of the patients experienced grade 3 or higher radiation-related toxicity or radiation-induced secondary malignancies.
Postoperative external beam radiotherapy is an effective and acceptable modality to prevent local recurrence and preserve joint function in patients with diffuse PVNS of the knee. Low-dose (20 Gy) radiotherapy appears to be as effective as moderate-dose treatment (around 35 Gy).
PMCID: PMC3369151  PMID: 22489888
9.  Molecular Mechanism of Macrophage Activation by Red Ginseng Acidic Polysaccharide from Korean Red Ginseng 
Mediators of Inflammation  2012;2012:732860.
Red ginseng acidic polysaccharide (RGAP), isolated from Korean red ginseng, displays immunostimulatory and antitumor activities. Even though numerous studies have been reported, the mechanism as to how RGAP is able to stimulate the immune response is not clear. In this study, we aimed to explore the mechanism of molecular activation of RGAP in macrophages. RGAP treatment strongly induced NO production in RAW264.7 cells without altering morphological changes, although the activity was not strong compared to LPS-induced dendritic-like morphology in RAW264.7 cells. RGAP-induced NO production was accompanied with enhanced mRNA levels of iNOS and increases in nuclear transcription factors such as NF-κB, AP-1, STAT-1, ATF-2, and CREB. According to pharmacological evaluation with specific enzyme inhibitors, Western blot analysis of intracellular signaling proteins and inhibitory pattern using blocking antibodies, ERK, and JNK were found to be the most important signaling enzymes compared to LPS signaling cascade. Further, TLR2 seems to be a target surface receptor of RGAP. Lastly, macrophages isolated from RGS2 knockout mice or wortmannin exposure strongly upregulated RGAP-treated NO production. Therefore, our results suggest that RGAP can activate macrophage function through activation of transcription factors such as NF-κB and AP-1 and their upstream signaling enzymes such as ERK and JNK.
PMCID: PMC3306998  PMID: 22474399
10.  Splenic infarction in a patient with autoimmune hemolytic anemia and protein C deficiency 
The Korean Journal of Hematology  2011;46(4):274-278.
Splenic infarction is most commonly caused by cardiovascular thromboembolism; however, splenic infarction can also occur in hematologic diseases, including sickle cell disease, hereditary spherocytosis, chronic myeloproliferative disease, leukemia, and lymphoma. Although 10% of splenic infarction is caused by hematologic diseases, it seldom accompanies autoimmune hemolytic anemia (AIHA). We report a case of a 47-year-old woman with iron deficiency anemia who presented with pain in the left upper abdominal quadrant, and was diagnosed with AIHA and splenic infarction. Protein C activity and antigen decreased to 44.0% (60-140%) and 42.0% (65-140%), respectively. Laboratory testing confirmed no clinical cause for protein C deficiency, such as disseminated intravascular coagulation, sepsis, hepatic dysfunction, or acute respiratory distress syndrome. Protein C deficiency with splenic infarction has been reported in patients with viral infection, hereditary spherocytosis, and leukemia. This is a rare case of splenic infarction and transient protein C deficiency in a patient with AIHA.
PMCID: PMC3259520  PMID: 22259634
Autoimmune hemolytic anemia; Protein C deficiency; Splenic infarction
11.  Red Ginseng Saponin Fraction A Isolated from Korean Red Ginseng by Ultrafiltration on the Porcine Coronary Artery 
Journal of Ginseng Research  2011;35(3):325-330.
Red ginseng saponin fraction-A (RGSF-A) contains a high percentage of panaxadiol saponins that were isolated from Korean red ginseng by ultrafiltration. The aim of this study was to elucidate the effects of RGSF-A on the porcine distal left anterior descending (LAD) coronary artery. The relaxant responses to RGSF-A were examined during contractions induced by 100 nM U46619 (9,11-dideoxy-9a,11a-methanoepoxy-prostaglandin F2a), a stable analogue of thromboxane A2. RGSF-A dose-dependently induced biphasic (fast- and slow-) relaxation in the distal LAD coronary artery in the presence of an intact endothelium. The fast-relaxation was quickly achieved in a minute, and then the slow-relaxation was slowly developed and sustained for more than thirty minutes after the administration of RGSF-A. The slow-relaxation had a tendency to be bigger than the fast-relaxation. Fast relaxation induced by RGSF-A was almost blocked by Nω-Nitro-L-arginine methyl ester (L-NAME), a nitric oxide synthase inhibitor and 1H-[1,2,4]oxadiazolo[4,3-a]quinoxalin-1-one (ODQ), a guanylate cyclase inhibitor. However slow-relaxation induced by RGSF-A was only partially inhibited by L-NAME and ODQ. In the endothelium-removed ring, RGSF-A evoked only slow-relaxation to a certain extent. These data suggest that RGSF-A induced both endothelium dependent fast- and slow-relaxation and endothelium independent slow-relaxation in the porcine distal LAD coronary artery. The endothelium dependent fast-relaxation is mediated by the nitric oxide (NO)-cGMP pathway, and the endothelium dependent slow-relaxation is at least partially mediated by the NO-cGMP pathway. However, the endothelium-independent slow-relaxation remains to be elucidated.
PMCID: PMC3659546  PMID: 23717076
Ginseng; Red ginseng saponin fraction-A; Porcine coronary artery; Endothelium; Nitric oxide
12.  Ginsenoside Rp1, a Ginsenoside Derivative, Blocks Promoter Activation of iNOS and COX-2 Genes by Suppression of an IKKβ-mediated NF-кB Pathway in HEK293 Cells 
Journal of Ginseng Research  2011;35(2):200-208.
Ginsenoside (G) Rp1 is a ginseng saponin derivative with anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory activities. In this study, we examined the mechanism by which G-Rp1 inhibits inflammatory responses of cells. We did this using a strategy in which DNA constructs containing cyclooxygenase (COX)-2 and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) promoters were transfected into HEK293 cells. G-Rp1 strongly inhibited the promoter activities of COX-2 and iNOS; it also inhibited lipopolysaccharide induced upregulation of COX-2 and iNOS mRNA levels in RAW264.7 cells. In HEK293 cells G-Rp1 did not suppress TANK binding kinase 1-, Toll-interleukin-1 receptor-domain-containing adapter-inducing interferon-β (TRIF)-, TRIFrelated adaptor molecule (TRAM)-, or activation of interferon regulatory factor (IRF)-3 and nuclear factor (NF)-кB by the myeloid differentiation primary response gene (MyD88)-induced. However, G-Rp1 strongly suppressed NF-кB activation induced by IкB kinase (IKK)β in HEK293 cells. Consistent with these results, G-Rp1 substantially inhibited IKKβ-induced phosphorylation of IкBɑ and p65. These results suggest that G-Rp1 is a novel anti-inflammatory ginsenoside analog that can be used to treat IKKβ/NF-кB-mediated inflammatory diseases.
PMCID: PMC3659523  PMID: 23717062
Panax ginseng; Ginsenoside Rp1; Cyclooxygenase 2; Nitric oxide synthase type II; Promoter activity; Nuclear factor-кB
13.  Favorable response to doxorubicin combination chemotherapy does not yield good clinical outcome in patients with metastatic breast cancer with triple-negative phenotype 
BMC Cancer  2010;10:527.
We analyzed the responses to first line treatment and clinical outcomes of metastatic breast cancer patients treated with palliative doxorubicin/cyclophosphamide (AC) according to molecular cancer subtype.
A retrospective analysis was performed for 110 metastatic breast cancer patients selected on the basis of palliative AC treatment and the availability of immunohistochemical data for estrogen receptor (ER), progesterone receptor (PR), and human epidermal growth factor receptor-2 (HER-2/neu) status.
Of the 110 patients analyzed, 71 (64.5%) were hormone receptor positive (HR+), 14 (12.7%) were HER2+, and 25 (22.7%) were triple negative (TN). There were no differences in age, stage at diagnosis, total number of cycles of palliative chemotherapy, incidence of visceral metastasis, and metastatic sites with the exception of liver among breast cancer subtypes. The overall response rates to AC were 55.9% for the HR+ subgroup, 42.9% for the HER2+ subgroup, and 56.5% for the TN subgroup. The progression-free survival (PFS) in patients with HER2+ and TN were significantly shorter than in the HR+ (median PFS, 9.1 vs 8.1 vs 11.5 months, respectively; p = 0.0002). The overall survival (OS) was 25.4 months in the TN subgroup and 27.3 months in HER2+ subgroup. The median OS for these two groups was significantly shorter than for patients in the HR+ subgroup (median, 38.5 months; 95% CI, 30.1-46.9 months; p < 0.0001).
The response to palliative AC chemotherapy did not differ among breast cancer subtypes. Despite chemosensitivity for palliative AC, the TN subtype has a shorter overall survival than non-TN subtypes. Innovative treatment strategies should be developed to slow the course of disease.
PMCID: PMC2972282  PMID: 20920367
14.  Metastatic lymph node in gastric cancer; Is it a real distant metastasis? 
BMC Cancer  2010;10:25.
Currently, the TNM staging system is a widely accepted method for assessing the prognosis of the disease and planning therapeutic strategies for cancer. Of the TNM system, the extent of lymph node involvement is the most important independent prognostic factor for gastric cancer. The aim of our study is to evaluate the survival and prognosis of gastric cancer patients with LN#12 or #13 involvement only and to assess the impact of anatomic regions of primary gastric tumor on survival in this particular subset of patients.
Among data of 1,008 stage IV gastric cancer patients who received curative R0 gastrectomy, a total of 79 patients with LN#12 (n = 68) and/or #13 (n = 11) were identified. All patients performed gastrectomy with D2 or D3 lymph node dissection.
In 79 patients with LN#12/13 involvement, the estimated one-, three- and five-year survival rate was 77.2%, 41.8% and 26.6% respectively. When we compared the patients with LN#12/13 involvement to those without involvement, there was no significant difference in OS (21.0 months vs. 25.0 months, respectively; P = 0.140). However, OS was significantly longer in patients with LN#12/13 involvement only than in those with M1 lymph node involvement (14.3 months; P = 0.001). There was a significant difference in survival according to anatomic locations of the primary tumor (lower to mid-body vs. high body or whole stomach): 26.5 vs. 9.2 months (P = 0.009). In Cox proportional hazard analysis, only N stage (p = 0.002) had significance to predict poor survival.
In this study we found that curatively resected gastric cancer patients with pathologic involvement of LN #12 and/or LN #13 had favorable survival outcome, especially those with primary tumor location of mid-body to antrum. Prospective analysis of survival in gastric cancer patients with L N#12 or #13 metastasis is warranted especially with regards to primary tumor location.
PMCID: PMC2848187  PMID: 20113485
15.  Liposarcoma: exploration of clinical prognostic factors for risk based stratification of therapy 
BMC Cancer  2009;9:205.
Prognosis and optimal treatment strategies of liposarcoma have not been fully defined. The purpose of this study is to define the distinctive clinical features of liposarcomas by assessing prognostic factors.
Between January 1995 and May 2008, 94 liposarcoma patients who underwent surgical resection with curative intent were reviewed.
Fifty patients (53.2%) presented with well differentiated, 22 (23.4%) myxoid, 15 (16.0%) dedifferentiated, 5 (5.3%) round cell, and 2 (2.1%) pleomorphic histology. With the median 14 cm sized of tumor burden, about half of the cases were located in the retroperitoneum (46.8%). Seventy two (76.6%) patients remained alive with 78.1%, and 67.5% of the 5- and 10-year overall survival (OS) rates, respectively. Low grade liposarcoma (well differentiated and myxoid) had a significantly prolonged OS and disease free survival (DFS) with adjuvant radiotherapy when compared with those without adjuvant radiotherapy (5-year OS, 100% vs 66.3%, P = 0.03; 1-year DFS, 92.9% vs 50.0%, respectively, P = 0.04). Independent prognostic factors for OS were histologic variant (P = 0.001; HR, 5.1; 95% CI, 2.0 – 12.9), and margin status (P = 0.005; HR, 4.1; 95% CI, 1.6–10.5). We identified three different risk groups: group 1 (n = 66), no adverse factors; group 2, one or two adverse factors (n = 28). The 5-year OS rate for group 1, and 2 were 91.9%, 45.5%, respectively.
The histologic subtype, and margin status were independently associated with OS, and adjuvant radiotherapy seems to confer survival benefit in low grade tumors. Our prognostic model for primary liposarcoma demonstrated distinct three groups of patients with good prognostic discrimination.
PMCID: PMC2711972  PMID: 19558664
16.  A retrospective analysis of second-line chemotherapy in patients with advanced gastric cancer 
BMC Cancer  2009;9:110.
Because treatment of advanced gastric cancer (AGC) patients after failure with first-line chemotherapy remains controversial, we performed this retrospective analysis based on the data obtained from 1455 patients registered in a first-line treatment cohort with respect to receiving or not receiving subsequent chemotherapy.
The decision for administering second-line chemotherapy was, in most cases, at the discretion of the physician. Seven-hundred twenty-five (50%) received second-line chemotherapy after first-line failure. Univariate and multivariate analyses were performed on the recognized baseline parameters for survival.
At the time of initiating second-line chemotherapy, the patients' median age was 56 years (range, 22 to 86) and 139 (19%) had an Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG) performance status of 2 or more. Seven (1%) complete and 108 (15%) partial responses to second-line chemotherapy were observed for an overall response rate of 16% (95% confidence interval [CI], 13 to 19%). The median progression-free and overall survivals, calculated from the start of second-line chemotherapy, were 2.9 months (95% CI, 2.6 to 3.3) and 6.7 months (95% CI, 5.8 to 7.5), respectively. Multivariate analysis revealed that low baseline hemoglobin level (hazard ratio [HR], 0.74; 95% CI 0.61–0.90) and a poor performance status (HR, 0.66; 95% CI, 0.52–0.83) were independent negative prognostic factors for overall survival.
Performance status, along with baseline hemoglobin level, could be used to identify the subgroup of patients most likely to benefit from second-line chemotherapy for AGC.
PMCID: PMC2671521  PMID: 19358705
17.  Orbital Infiltration as the First Site of Relapse of Primary Testicular T-cell Lymphoma 
A 43-year-old male presented with a painless left testicular mass. The pathologic diagnosis of the radical orchiectomy specimen was peripheral T-cell lymphoma, unspecified (PTCL-u). According to the Ann Arbor staging system, his initial stage was III because of the right nasopharyngeal involvement. After first-line chemotherapy with four courses of the CHOP regimen and this was followed by involved-field radiotherapy, he achieved complete remission. Two months later, disease recurred to the left ciliary body of the left eye without evidence of involvement at other sites. Although the patient received intensive chemotherapy with autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, he ultimately died of leptomeningeal seeding. Because both the central nervous system (CNS) and the orbit are sanctuary sites for chemotherapy, orbital infiltration of lymphoma should prompt physicians to evaluate involvement of the CNS and to consider performing prophylactic intrathecal chemotherapy as a treatment option.
PMCID: PMC2739356  PMID: 19746228
Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma; T cell lymphoma; Testes; Eye neoplasm
18.  Postoperative Spinal Epidural Hematoma: Risk Factor and Clinical Outcome 
Yonsei Medical Journal  2006;47(3):326-332.
We report a series of epidural hematomas which cause neurologic deterioration after spinal surgery, and have taken risk factors and prognostic factors into consideration. We retrospectively reviewed the database of 3720 cases of spine operation in a single institute over 7 years (1998 April-2005 July). Nine patients who demonstrated neurologic deterioration after surgery and required surgical decompression were identified. Factors postulated to increase the postoperative epidural hematoma and to improve neurologic outcome were investigated. The incidence of postoperative epidural hematoma was 0.24%. Operation sites were cervical 3 cases, thoracic 2 cases, and lumbar 4 cases. Their original diagnoses were tumor 3 cases, cervical stenosis 2 cases, lumbar stenosis 3 cases and herniated lumbar disc 1case. The symptoms of epidural hematomas were neurologic deterioration and pain. After decompression, clinical outcome revealed complete recovery in 3 cases (33.3%), incomplete recovery in 5 cases (55.6%) and no change in 1 case (11.1%). Factors increasing the risk of postoperative epidural hematoma were coagulopathy from medical illness or anticoagulation therapy (4 cases, 44.4%) and highly vascularized tumor (3 cases, 33.3%). The time interval to evacuation of complete recovery group (29.3 hours) was shorter than incomplete recovery group (66.3 hours). Patients with coagulopathy and highly vascularized tumor were more vulnerable to spinal epidural hematoma. The postoperative outcome was related to the preoperative neurological deficit and the time interval to the decompression.
PMCID: PMC2688151  PMID: 16807981
Clinical outcome; risk factor; postoperative; spinal epidural hematoma; spine surgery
19.  Posterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion via a Unilateral Approach 
Yonsei Medical Journal  2006;47(3):319-325.
This study sought to determine the outcomes of posterior lumbar interbody fusion (PLIF), via a unilateral approach, in selected patients who presented with unilateral leg pain and segmental instability of the lumbar spine. Patients with a single level of a herniated disc disease in the lumbar spine, unilateral leg pain, chronic disabling lower back pain (LBP), and a failed conservative treatment, were considered for the procedure. A total of 41 patients underwent a single-level PLIF using two PEEK™ (Poly-Ether-Ether-Ketone) cages filled with iliac bone, via a unilateral approach. The patients comprised 21 women and 20 men with a mean age of 41 years (range: 22 to 63 years). Two cages were inserted using a unilateral medial facetectomy and a partial hemilaminectomy. At follow-up, the outcomes were assessed using the Prolo Scale. The success of the fusion was determined by dynamic lumbar radiography and/or computerized tomography scanning. All the patients safely underwent surgery without severe complications. During a mean follow-up period of 26 months, 1 patient underwent percutaneous pedicle screw fixation due to persistent LBP. A posterior displacement of the cage was found in one patient. At the last follow up, 90% of the patients demonstrated satisfactory results. An osseous fusion was present in 85% of the patients. A PLIF, via a unilateral approach, enables a solid union with satisfactory clinical results. This preserves part of the posterior elements of the lumbar spine in selected patients with single level instability and unilateral leg pain.
PMCID: PMC2688150  PMID: 16807980
Posterior lumbar interbody fusion (PLIF); unilateral approach; instability
20.  Real-time CT Fluoroscopy (CTF)-Guided Vertebroplasty in Osteoporotic Spine Fractures 
Yonsei Medical Journal  2005;46(5):635-642.
The purpose of this study was to evaluate the clinical feasibility, benefits, and limitations of CT fluoroscopy (CTF)-guided percutaneous vertebroplasty (PVP). PVP under the guidance of CTF without additional guidance by conventional C-arm fluoroscopy was performed in a total of 29 vertebral bodies in 21 patients with vertebral compression fractures. While monitoring sectional CTF images, the needle was advanced from the skin to the target vertebra. Contrast media and polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) were injected into the target vertebra with careful monitoring of their distribution. After the procedure, an evaluation was conducted to determine whether extraosseous leakage of PMMA occurred and whether sufficient filling of PMMA had been achieved. Needle placement into the target vertebra was easily achieved with both the transpedicular and posterolateral approaches. Injection of PMMA and venous leakage of contrast media were carefully monitored in all patients, and early detection of PMMA leaking was achieved in 5 patients. Extraosseous leakage that had not been detected during the procedure was not found upon postoperative evaluation. Pain scales were significantly decreased after the procedure, and no obvious complications occurred following the procedure. CTF-guided PVP without the combined use of C-arm fluoroscopy was feasible and showed definite benefits. We believe that, in spite of some limitations, CTF-guided PVP provides an alternative technique appropriate in certain situations.
PMCID: PMC2810568  PMID: 16259060
Compression fracture; osteoporosis; vertebroplasty; CT fluoroscopy

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