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1.  Late–onset systemic lupus erythematosus-associated primary biliary cirrhosis 
Background
The development of Primary Biliary Cirrhosis (PBC) during the course of Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) is extremely rare. We report the case of a geriatric woman who was diagnosed with SLE at 69 years of age then with primary biliary cirrhosis one year later.
Case presentation
A 70-years-old woman, who had been diagnosed with SLE at 69 years, was admitted for further examination of liver dysfunction. PBC was confirmed based on elevated serum levels of transaminase, high levels of antimitochondrial antibodies and following a liver biopsy. The oral administration of ursodeoxycholic acid stabilized the liver dysfunction.
Conclusion
We described an original case report of elderly patient with coexisting PBC and SLE. To date, according to the best of our knowledge, there have been few case reports of SLE/PBC co-occurrence. The aetiology of this complex remains unknown, autoimmune mechanisms, environmental and genetic factors are considered important in the susceptibility to both diseases. Osteopontin might play an important role.
doi:10.1186/1755-7682-6-3
PMCID: PMC3571903  PMID: 23383854
Systemic lupus erythematosus; Primary biliary cirrhosis; Antimitochondrial antibodies
2.  Prevalence of diabetes mellitus among non institutionalized elderly in Monastir City 
Background
Diabetes is a major public health problem worldwide. This problem is particularly relevant to the elderly. The prevalence of each condition increase with age. The present study aimed to determine the prevalence of Diabetes Mellitus (DM) among elderly; we also examined socio-economic factors and life style that are likely to be associated with DM.
Methods
A cross-sectional study was conducted in 2008–2009, and used a multistage cluster sampling method to select a representative sample among non institutionalized elderly in Monastir City. A total of 598 elderly aged 65 to 95 years were included.
Results
The prevalence of DM was 27.4% (29.2% in males’ vs 26.5% in females). Elderly with DM showed higher prevalence of hypertension, obesity and abdominal obesity. DM prevalence decreased with advancing ages in both men and women. Urban residents had a higher prevalence than did their rural counterparts. In multivariate analysis, DM was associated with abdominal obesity (OR [95% CI], 2.6 [1.1-6]; p <0.01), co-existing diseases (3.8 [2.4-6]; p <0.01), and hypertension (2.7 [1.6-4.5] ; p <0.01).
Conclusion
The study highlights the DM problem in Tunisia. An ageing population together with social, economic and lifestyle changes have led to a dramatic increase in DM. These data emphasize the urgent need for a comprehensive integrated population-based intervention program to ameliorate the growing problem of DM.
doi:10.1186/1472-6823-12-15
PMCID: PMC3461464  PMID: 22898260
Diabetes; Elderly; Prevalence; Tunisia; Non institutionalized
3.  Managing the risk of cancer in Cowden syndrome: a case report 
Introduction
Cowden syndrome is a rare cancer predisposition syndrome inherited in an autosomal-dominant fashion. The syndrome is characterized by hamartomatous polyps that affect multiple organs: skin, mucous membranes, thyroid, breast, gastrointestinal tract, endometrium and brain. It is also associated with an increased risk of developing malignancy in many tissues but especially breast, thyroid and endometrium.
Case presentation
We present the case of a 30-year-old Tunisian woman with mental retardation who presented to our facility with rectal hamartomatous polyps. Her medical history included fibrocystic disease of the breast over the last three years. A physical examination revealed macrocephaly, hyperkeratotic papules on the mid-facial skin, palmoplantar keratosis and oral mucosal papillomatosis. A breast examination revealed nodular breast tissue bilaterally and a diffuse thyroid goiter. Our patient was clinically euthyroid. A total thyroidectomy was performed. A histopathologic examination revealed thyroid papillary carcinoma. A gastrointestinal evaluation revealed esophageal and gastric polyps. Biopsies showed hyperplastic and adenomatous lesions associated with Helicobacter pylori. A final diagnosis of Cowden syndrome was made according to the syndrome testing criteria adapted by the US National Comprehensive Cancer Network. A prophylactic bilateral mastectomy was proposed but refused by our patient. Our patient was kept under surveillance for breast and colorectal malignancies.
Conclusions
Early and accurate diagnosis of Cowden syndrome is essential because it is a cancer predisposition syndrome that carries an increased risk for developing malignancy in many tissues, especially breast and thyroid. For this reason, education regarding the signs and symptoms of cancer is important. All patients must be screened for malignancies and options for prophylactic mastectomy should be discussed. Guidelines for cancer screening including surveillance and management plans for these patients should be distinguished from those of the general population, and may lead to a more timely diagnosis and treatment of cancers associated with this syndrome.
doi:10.1186/1752-1947-6-225
PMCID: PMC3459741  PMID: 22846627
4.  An unusual case of Behçet's disease presenting with postpartum ovarian iliac vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism 
Thrombosis Journal  2006;4:20.
Thrombosis of the ovarian vein is a rare complication which arises classically in the postpartum. We report a case of 24-year-old woman with a history of Behçet's disease, who presented with pelvic and thoracic pain, tachycardia, dyspnea and fever occurring 2 weeks after delivery. Computed tomography revealed an ascending thrombosis of the iliac and right ovarian veins complicated by bilateral pulmonary embolism. The patient responded well to the combination of anticoagulants and immunosuppressive agents. Behçet's disease should also be considered as an etiologic factor for ovarian vein thrombosis.
doi:10.1186/1477-9560-4-20
PMCID: PMC1764004  PMID: 17156465
5.  Intracardiac thrombus in Behçet's disease: Two case reports 
Thrombosis Journal  2005;3:9.
Intracardiac thrombus in Behçet's disease is an extremely rare manifestation. We report two such cases. A 20-year-old man presented with dyspnoea, cough and haemoptysis. Right heart thrombus associated with pulmonary artery aneurysm and thromboembolism was identified by helical CT and transoesophageal echocardiography. The second case was a 29-year-old male admitted for fever and chest pain. A diagnosis of right atrial thrombosis associated with pulmonary embolism and hyperhomocysteinemia was made. Due to the absence of haemodynamic compromise, medical management consisting of immunosupressive and anticoagulation therapy was adopted which resulted in complete dissolution of the thrombus with dramatic clinical improvement in both cases of clinical status.
Conclusion: intracardiac thrombus is a rare complication of Behçet's disease. As shown in our patients, medical treatment should be considered as the first line.
doi:10.1186/1477-9560-3-9
PMCID: PMC1192821  PMID: 16042810
Intracardiac thrombus; Behcet's disease
6.  Association of SNP3 polymorphism in the apolipoprotein A-V gene with plasma triglyceride level in Tunisian type 2 diabetes 
Background
Apolipoprotein A-V (Apo A-V) gene has recently been identified as a new apolipoprotein involved in triglyceride metabolism. A single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP3) located in the gene promoter (-1131) was associated with triglyceride variation in healthy subjects. In type 2 diabetes the triglyceride level increased compared to healthy subjects. Hypertriglyceridemia is a risk factor for coronary artery disease. We aimed to examine the interaction between SNP3 and lipid profile and coronary artery disease (CAD) in Tunisian type 2 diabetic patients.
Results
The genotype frequencies of T/T, T/C and C/C were 0.74, 0.23 and 0.03 respectively in non diabetic subjects, 0.71, 0.25 and 0.04 respectively in type 2 diabetic patients. Triglyceride level was higher in heterozygous genotype (-1131 T/C) of apo A-V (p = 0.024). Heterozygous genotype is more frequent in high triglyceride group (40.9%) than in low triglyceride group (18.8%) ; p = 0.011. Despite the relation between CAD and hypertriglyceridemia the SNP 3 was not associated with CAD.
Conclusion
In type 2 diabetic patients SNP3 is associated with triglyceride level, however there was no association between SNP3 and coronary artery disease.
doi:10.1186/1476-511X-4-1
PMCID: PMC545942  PMID: 15636639

Results 1-6 (6)