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Knowledge and health-seeking practices of mothers attending primary health-care centers in Baghdad Al-Karkh sector about danger signs in newborns
Hiba Naji Abdulrida, Reem Jameel Hassan, Mary Mohammed Sabri
January-June 2018, 17(1):29-35
Background: High-risk neonate defines as one who requires more than the standard monitoring and care offered to a healthy term newborn infant; therefore, early detection of neonatal illness is an important step toward improving newborn survival. Objectives: The objective of this study is to assess the knowledge and health-seeking practices of mothers attending primary health-care centers about WHO recognized danger signs in newborns. Subjects and Methods: A cross-sectional study was carried out in primary health-care centers selected conveniently in Baghdad-Alkarkh district. Participants were 275 mothers of child-bearing age group selected conveniently; the data were collected during the period from March 1 to June 30, 2017. A general questionnaire used for the data collection. Results: About 81% of mothers in study sample listed three or more of the who recognized danger signs. About 71.7% of mothers tend to seek advice or treatment for the illness outside the home. The proportion of good knowledge and health-seeking practices was higher in (Educated, employee, mothers who had a history of antenatal care attendance with higher number of visits). There was no relationship between number of children and family support with seeking care outside the home. Mothers who had good knowledge of danger signs of their babies tend to seek care from health facilities more frequently 75%, and this relation was statistically significant, 61.2% of mothers who perceive illness in newborns delayed seeking advice or treatment outside the home, 66% not taking newborn to the health facilities because they expect self-resolution of the illness. There is good knowledge and perception of mothers toward some danger signs such as fever, poor feeding, and jaundice while fair toward others such as cold body, chest indrawing, and signs of local infections. Conclusion: There are good knowledge and perception of mothers about the WHO recognized danger signs in newborns; however, there is a gap between mothers' knowledge and their health-seeking behavior for sick newborn and explored their deep perceptions, constraints, and various treatments.
  6,908 692 13
Foliate papillitis masquerading as squamous cell carcinoma in clinical presentation
Thorakkal Shamim, Koyakkunjakath Padinhare Ottayil Shabeer
January-June 2021, 20(1):25-25
  7,420 130 -
A working classification proposed for indices based on dental specialties in dental research
Thorakkal Shamim
July-December 2018, 17(2):100-103
In dentistry, indices are values that are assigned to quantify the incidence, prevalence, and severity of disease. This paper calls attention to a working classification proposed for indices based on its relationship with nine dental specialties with literature search of indices used in dental research in the PubMed database.
  6,186 233 -
A dental professional's personal experience as an author: Innovational and educational approach
Thorakkal Shamim
January-June 2021, 20(1):23-24
  5,475 109 -
Evaluation of the effects of TAK-242 and GIT-27 on methotrexate-induced liver injury
Bassim I Mohammad, Bassim S Ahmed, Alaa Fadhel Hassan
July-December 2018, 17(2):85-92
Background: Methotrexate (MTX)-induced liver injury is a common problem that is described as increased level of hepatic biomarkers that is seen in 14%–25% of patients with inflammatory bowel disease and 49% of patients with rheumatoid arthritis or as idiosyncratic induced liver injury that is seen in 1% of patients with inflammatory bowel disease, or as fibrosis and cirrhosis in 17% of rheumatoid arthritis patients and 25% of psoriatic patients. This profile may rarely progress to acute liver failure. Aim: The aim is to study the effect of TAK-242 and GIT-27 on MTX-induced liver injury. Materials and Methods: Thirty-five Albino-Wistar rats were divided into five groups: the first group was maintained on distilled water, the second group was administered intraperitoneal (I.P.) dimethyl sulfoxide followed by oral MTX, the third group was administered oral MTX, the fourth group was administered I.P. TAK-242 followed by oral MTX, and the fifth group was administered I.P. GIT-27 followed by oral MTX. Results: The significant increase in markers of hepatic function, inflammatory and oxidative stress markers, as well as severe liver histopathologic change “steatosis” induced by methotrexate were alleviated in the animals pretreated with the drugs TAK-242 and GIT-27. With significant improvement in serum level of alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, alkaline phosphatase, bilirubin, interleukin-6, tumor necrosis factor-α, malondialdehyde and reduced glutathione; beside an improved histopathologic profile of moderate steatosis. Conclusion: This study suggests that both TAK-242 and GIT-27 protect against liver injury induced by MTX depending on their antagonism of the inflammatory Toll-like receptors 4 and 2/6.
  5,130 383 -
The effects of ferrous sulfate as an iron supplement on ejection fraction in patients with iron deficiency anemia associated with decompensated heart failure
Mohammed Qasim Yahya Mal-Allah Al-Atrakji
January-June 2018, 17(1):22-28
Background: Acute decompensated heart failure (HF) is a clinical syndrome that results when abnormalities in the structure and function of the myocardium impair cardiac output or decrease filling of the ventricles. Anemia is a common comorbidity in patients with chronic HF (CHF), is associated with increased disease severity, and may contribute to a worse the outcome. Aim of the Study: To study the relationship between iron level and left ventricular function (LVF) in patients having acute decompensated HF and the effects of iron supplement on this function. Patients and Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted in the medical wards of Baghdad Teaching Hospital at different times during the period between October 1, 2016, and May 1, 2017. It included 60 patients diagnosed with CHF (9 patients with HF with preserved ejection fraction [EF] and 51 patients with HF with reduced EF) and admitted to the medical wards due to acute decompensation. For all patients, history, cardiological examination, New York Heart Association classification, electrocardiogram, and chest X-ray were done. Body mass index was measured. Standard echocardiography was performed. Hematological parameters were measured including hemoglobin (Hb), mean corpuscular volume, mean corpuscular Hb (MCH), MCH concentration, blood film, serum iron, erythrocyte count, total iron-binding capacity, and transferrin saturation. Results: Serum iron was significantly lower in patients with impaired EF with median serum iron 41 versus 94 mcg/dL in preserved EF (72.5% vs. 0%). Transferrin saturation was statistically and significantly lower in patients with EF <50% (39.2% of the patients with impaired EF had low transferrin saturation [P < 0.001] compared to 0% in patients with preserved EF). EF had inverse significant correlation with total binding capacity of iron (r = −0.585, P < 0.001). Iron supplements as ferrous sulfate have a highly significant effect (P < 0.001) on improving the LVF and EF, iron level and transferrin saturation in patients with decompensated HF with low EF. Conclusions: Most HF patients with low EF in this study had reduced iron level and transferrin saturation comparing to those with preserved EF. Iron supplement in a patient with low EF preserved the EF in them. Anemia still is founded in patients of HF with acceptable EF in the presence of normal iron status, and this is explained by other causes rather than iron deficiency.
  4,810 470 -
Evaluation of the gastrointestinal clinical, endoscopic, and histological findings in patients with bile reflux diseases: A cross-sectional study
Sabeha Al-Bayati, Ahmed Sahir Alnajjar
January 2019, 18(1):10-15
Background: Bile reflux occurs when the bile flows upward from the duodenum to the stomach and esophagus. It occurs when the pyloric sphincter is damaged or fails to work correctly; bile can enter the stomach and then be transported into the esophagus as in gastric reflux. Objective: This study aims to evaluate clinical findings and the endoscopic and histological changes caused by bile reflux disease on gastric mucosa. Patients and Methods: This is a cross-sectional study carried out at Gastrointestinal Endoscopy Unit in Al-Yarmouk Teaching Hospital in Baghdad during the period from January 2016 to October 2016, upper endoscopy done to 50 patients in the Gastrointestinal Tract Center of Al-Yarmouk Teaching Hospital, in whom there is endoscopic evidence of bile reflux disease and biopsies from gastric mucosa were taken and send for histopathology and Helicobacter pylori examination. Results: Bile reflux was noted in 19 males (38%) and 31 females (62%). Bile reflux disease was more in age below 50 years (29 patients), more in the female, while after the age of 65 years, the male/female ratio was 1.5/1. The most common symptoms were epigastric pain. The most common endoscopic findings were gastric erythema. The major risk factors were cholecystectomy (8%). Pylori were present in about 24% of the patients. Conclusion: Bile reflux disease was more common in young female and cholecystectomy was common risk factor.
  4,845 384 3
Narrow-Band Imaging Pattern: A Promising Radiologic Aid in Potentially Malignant Lesions and Oral Cancer
Thorakkal Shamim
January 2019, 18(1):58-58
  5,031 194 -
Gastroesophageal reflux disease questionnaire score and endoscopic findings in patients with gastroesophageal reflux disease
Sabeha Albayati, Firyad Dhari Khalaf
July-December 2019, 18(2):63-69
Background: Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is one of the most common conditions encountered in the in- and outpatient clinic, may present with heartburn and acid regurgitation, and it can be asymptomatic too. Furthermore, chronic recurrent cases lead to potentially preventable complications such as esophageal erosion, stricture, and even ulcers. Objective: The aim of the study is to evaluate the accuracy of history taking from patients with GERD and compare it with endoscopic findings. Patients and Methods: This study was conducted in GIT center, Department of Medicine at Al-Yarmouk Teaching Hospital from November 2017 to March 2018. One hundred patients (65 males and 35 females) referred for oesophagogastroduodenoscopy (OGD) for symptoms suggesting of GERD; the assumed indication of their referral, severity of their condition evaluated using GERD Questionnaire (GERDQ score), and their endoscopic finding were assessed depending on Los Angeles classification of erosive esophagitis. Results: A total of 100 patients were enrolled in this study, including 42 patients had erosive esophagitis and 58 had not. There was statistical significance in the GERDQ score of erosive esophagitis group (9.5 ± 1.2) and nonerosive esophagitis group (8.6 ± 1.98); P < 0.05 showing that significant correlation between the score and the occurrence of erosive esophagitis. GERDQ score and the severity of reflux esophagitis were positively correlated. Conclusion: There was correlation between GERDQ score and the severity of esophageal erosion by endoscope in patients with GERD, GERDQ a valid scoring system that scientifically correlates between clinical symptoms and history findings with the endoscopic result.
  4,759 397 3
Trend of cholera in Iraq in the time of unrest
Ashraf M. A Hussain, Riyadh K Lafta
January 2019, 18(1):1-4
Background: Countries that are facing war disasters are prone to develop outbreak emergencies especially when this is associated with massive displacement of populations or refugees to overcrowded settings, and when the provision of safe water supply and sanitation is a challenge. Objective: To portray the trend of cholera in Iraq for the last 18 years. Methods: Records of cholera cases registered for the last 18 years were reviewed from the Department of Health Statistics of the Iraqi Ministry of Health and categorized according to the 18 Iraqi governorates; the total of each governorate was computed for the whole studied years and then summed to get the total for Iraq. Data were categorized by gender and age. Rates of occurrence were plotted against time (for the period from 2000 to 2017) to define the trend of the disease. Results: The trend of cholera in Iraq showed four peaks, in 2003, 2007, 2012, and 2015, females showed slightly more cases than males, with a higher incidence among adult age group, and more in the southern provinces. Conclusion: The epidemics of cholera in Iraq are getting progressively more frequent, with higher number of cases forming a real burden on the health system and a serious threat to the community. Efficient preventive health plans are needed to overcome this growing problem that may compromise the life of people.
  4,591 471 3
Fetal parameters and early evidence of fetal macrosomia in prepregnancy diabetic women
Hala A. G. AL Rawi, Ban Hadi, Najlaa Hanon
July-December 2018, 17(2):75-79
Background: Diabetes in pregnancy with macrosomia is an important risk factor for neonatal morbidity and mortality. Prediction of macrosomia is significantly improved by adding ultrasound to clinical findings. Objective: For earlier detection of macrosomia in prepregnancy diabetic mothers using fetal growth profile including biparietal diameter, femoral length, and also abdominal circumference (AC). Patients and Methods: A historical prospective cohort study was performed at National Endocrine and Diabetic Center in addition to the Obstetrics and Gynecology Department at Al-Yarmouk Hospital for 2 years, from September 2014 to 2016. A hundred and sixty pregnant women were enrolled in this study, 80 of them with a history of prepregnancy diabetes mellitus were taken as a patient group and the other 80 pregnant women with a compatible gestational age and without a history of diabetes mellitus were taken as a comparison group. Abdominal ultrasound was done for patients in both groups at 20, 28, and 36 weeks of gestation and then birth weight was measured for each. Results were compared between two groups. Results: The incident of macrosomia was 30% in patient group and 10% in comparison group. Regarding early prediction of macrosomia by ultrasound using biparietal diameter, femoral length, and AC, the results of the current study revealed that those macrosomic babies have higher femoral length, AC but not biparietal diameter in comparison with babies of average weight using ultrasound performed at 20-week gestation and repeated at 28 and 36 weeks. Conclusion: In diabetic mother, fetal macrosomia can be predicted by ultrasound during pregnancy as early as 20-week gestation.
  4,363 341 1
The significance of (platelet/white blood cell) counts ratio in screening for high risk for preeclampsia and its related complications
Wisam Akram, Duha Muaeed
January 2019, 18(1):36-42
Background: We have taken a standpoint that the scope of the platelet count or its variance is significantly higher in pregnancy; 50,000-6,00, 000 compared to the white blood cells(WBC) 9,000-11,000. Hence, their ratio may be a useful marker in predicting preeclampsia. Aim of the Study: The aim of this study was to verify that placental weight (PW ratio) or platelet/WBC count might be a useful screening ratio for preeclampsia and its related complications. Patients and Methods: We have taken a total of 104 primigravida patients, each one is corresponding to the gestational ages (GA) 20–34 weeks, and seven patients per each week for initial PW ratio assessment. In addition, all women were told to come again at 34 weeks of gestation for reassessment of PW ratio (platelet/WBC) count, and a meticulous ultrasound examination for intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR) as well as biophysical profile. Results: At the end of the study, we subdivided the 104 initial sample into three subgroups; normal women (n = 76); women with preeclampsia but no IUGR (n = 16); and women with preeclampsia and IUGR (n = 12). There was a statistically significant difference between the three groups with regard to systolic, diastolic, and PW ratio. In addition, the PW ratio was significantly different among the three subgroups using the analysis of variance test. Nonlinear polynomial of the third degree between PW ratio and GA has shown a significant correlation between PW ratio and GA. The correlation between them was statistically significant, yet the distribution of PW was normal in distribution P = 0.16. In addition, since all screening test should be subject to Weibull distribution, we challenged the PW ratio against this distribution and was found to be positive P = 0.3 by using the Kolmogorov–Smirnov test. At last, logistic regression was constructed to evaluate the correlation between PW ratio and the number of infants with IUGR, and a highly positive correlation was found P = 0.0001. Moreover, PW was significant with all the items of the biophysical profile which includes body posture, gross body movement, respiratory fetal movement, oligohydramnios, and NST. At last, we have constructed easily used chart and reference tables for PW ratio between 20 and 34 weeks; hence, they can be used in clinical practice to verify this ratio among women with preeclampsia. Conclusion: A simple easily to calculate ratio has been constructed which has been shown in this paper to be significantly correlated to preeclampsia and IUGR, and from this ratio, easy reference table and figure have been constructed. Yet, by no mean, we call that this ratio or table is used as a substitute for clinical methods to screen or to diagnose preeclampsia until its significance is evaluated by further trials. However, it may be of value as an adjuvant test to other standard tests used for preeclampsia screening or monitoring.
  4,288 279 -
Immune checkpoint inhibitors and health-related quality of life: A systematic review of the current literature
Mohamed H Elshahidi
January-June 2018, 17(1):1-13
Background: Over the past years, some immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICPIs) have been approved for clinical use in several malignancies. Examining the effects of ICPIs on the patients' health-related quality of life (HRQoL) may help clinicians in their decision-making process. Aim: The aim of this review is to summarize the current evidence about the effects of ICPIs on the patients' HRQoL. Methods: PubMed, Embase (via OvidSP), Web of Science, Scopus, and EBSCOhost were searched from their dates of inception to January 2018. Studies reporting the effects of ICPIs on the HRQoL using a valid questionnaire are included in the review. A narrative summary of the included studies was presented. Results: Sixteen studies met the specific inclusion criteria, which are as follows: seven about melanoma, three about renal cell carcinoma (RCC), one about metastatic Merkel-cell carcinoma (mMCC), two about squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck, two about non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC), and one about colorectal cancer (CRC). In melanoma, more improvements in the global health status (GHS) were observed with pembrolizumab, ipilimumab 3 mg/kg, and pembrolizumab every 2 weeks than with ipilimumab, ipilimumab 10 mg/kg, and pembrolizumab every 3 weeks, respectively. However, no clinically significant differences were found when adding gp100 vaccine, using different doses of pembrolizumab or combining ICPIs. In RCC, the EQ-5D utility index and the time to deterioration were improved in the nivolumab groups than in everolimus groups. In squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck, the GHS remained stable or improved with nivolumab. However, there was no significant difference in the time to deterioration between nivolumab and investigator's choice. In mMCC, a slight gain in the GHS was observed with avelumab. In NSCLC, improvements were observed in the symptoms scales and some of the functioning scales with pembrolizumab than chemotherapy. However, no difference was observed between them on emotional functioning. In CRC, some clinically meaningful improvements were observed in nivolumab plus ipilimumab. Conclusion: Due to the complexities in the longitudinal analysis of HRQoL data and some other concerns in the included studies designs, these results should be interpreted carefully. PROSPERO registration number: CRD42018089311
  4,089 418 1
Thyroid dysfunction in patients with uncontrolled type 2 diabetes mellitus
Haidar Fadhil Al-Rubaye
January 2019, 18(1):16-19
Background: Diabetes mellitus, particularly type 2, and thyroid dysfunction are the most common endocrine disorders. In addition, thyroid dysfunction is associated with poor glycemic control, and there is increased incidence of thyroid dysfunction in type 2 diabetics. Objectives: This study had been designed to find the frequency of thyroid dysfunction in patients with uncontrolled type 2 diabetes mellitus, the frequency of different types of thyroid dysfunction in this group of patients, the effect of having thyroid dysfunction on the glycemic control, and the glycemic control in patients with well-treated thyroid dysfunction. Patients and Methods: This study is a cross-sectional study which included 500 patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus who had been randomly selected from the patients attending the National Center for Diabetes/Al-Mustansiriya University and the outpatient clinic of Al-Yarmouk Teaching Hospital during the period between August 1, 2016, and July 31, 2017. All of the patients underwent a full history and physical examination, in addition, all of them were sent for random plasma glucose, glycated hemoglobin, and “thyroid-stimulating hormone.” Results: This study showed that 364 patients (72.8% of the sample) had poor glycemic control. Thyroid dysfunction was diagnosed in 67 patients (18.4% of those with poor glycemic control), 43.28% of them were known to have thyroid dysfunction, and the rest of them were discovered to have thyroid dysfunction during the study. Hypothyroidism, including both subclinical and primary types, was diagnosed in 26 patients. Statistical analysis showed that significant association between poor glycemic control and thyroid dysfunction calculated Chi-square was 10.67 and P = 0.001086. Conclusions: This study showed that thyroid disorders are not uncommon in patients with uncontrolled type 2 diabetes mellitus. Hypothyroidism is the most common type of thyroid dysfunction and having thyroid dysfunction whether in the form of hypo or hyperfunction is associated with poor glycemic control and controlling thyroid state result in better glycemic control.
  3,994 408 2
Detecting heart tissue injury in electrocution human cases using heart-type fatty acid-binding protein 3
Ameen Mohammed Kathum, Nabeel Ghazi Hashim Al-Khateeb
July-December 2019, 18(2):74-84
Introduction: In the medicolegal daily practice, electrocution is a traumatic cause of death owing to wide use of electricity and electrical devices in different activities of modern life at home and workplaces. Electrical current passage through tissues elaborates different types of energy (the electrical, thermal, and mechanical energies) which can cause skin lesions, multiorgan damage, and even death. The severity and extent of tissue injuries depend on the current type (alternating current [AC] or direct current), its strength (amperage), voltage (low or high), frequency, tissue resistance, duration of exposure, and its pathway through the body. Microscopic examination of tissue samples from the heart may show nonspecific findings to electrocution, but sometimes none is detected by conventional hematoxylin and eosin stains (H and E). Therefore, immunohistochemical studies could help the forensic pathologists in their diagnosis, especially cases with less typical findings or obscure circumstances. Heart-type fatty acid-binding protein 3 (H-FABP3) is a small cytoplasmic protein of (15 kDa), composes of 133 amino acids, involves in active fatty acid metabolism, and transports fatty acids from the cell membrane to mitochondria for oxidation. Due to its cytoplasmic location and small molecular weight, it released from cardiac myocytes into the circulation following an ischemic episode. Objective: This study was conducted to evaluate the effect of electric current on the expression of H-FABP3 in human heart tissue autopsy samples. Methods: Human heart tissue samples were collected during the period from January 1 2016 to June 30, 2016, through autopsy of 30 medicolegal cases of electrocution as well as 30 cases of fatal head injuries which were used as control. They were examined by conventional histopathological H and E stain and immunohistochemical technique so that H-FABP3 was detected using FABP3 polyclonal antibody and demonstrated by ready to use biotin-free, one-step horseradish peroxidase polymer anti-mouse, rat, and rabbit immunoglobulin G with 3,3'-diaminobenzidine to achieve the aim of this study. Results: This study shows that electric shock was the fifth cause of traumatic death, being responsible for death of only 4.5% of cases referred to the medicolegal directorate in Baghdad during the period of study. It is almost accidental death in Iraqi society with higher incidence to be due to contact with low-voltage household AC sources with young males at the age of (15–20 years old) are being more vulnerable to fatal electrical injury than females during their early productive life (with male:female ratio = 6:1). Heart tissue ischemia is a major cause of death following electrocution, especially when victim being in contact with household low-voltage AC in the presence of transthoracic pathway to the ground and low body resistance due to skin wet which can cause death within a minute in association with mild if any electrical skin burns. Electrocution has a significant effect on H-FABP3 stain total index as it causes depletion of FABP3 total stain index with mean of 0.28 ± 0.149177SD for tissue sections of the heart muscle in the affected areas of human cases. Conclusions: Immunohistochemical heart tissue samples' examination which shows dramatic depletion in H-FABP3 total stain index in affected area(s) is of value in detecting heart tissue injury caused by electrocution during the early period after death even in the absence of grossly and microscopically visible lesion(s).
  3,978 331 -
Assessment of the alteration of blood indices in patients with type 2 diabetic mellitus: A cross-sectional study
Mohammad Hasan Ali, Abeer J Hassan
January 2019, 18(1):24-30
Background: The prevalence of diabetes mellitus has a major impact on national and global health. Diabetes, a noncommunicable disease, was considered one of the top ten causes of death. Diabetic patients with chronic hyperglycemia have increased risk of macrovascular and microvascular complications in the long term. Diabetes is associated with an increased risk for morbidity from anemia which leads to dysfunction and structural change in all formed elements. Objective: This study focused on the alteration of blood parameters in diabetic patients compared with healthy controls. Materials and Methods: This is a comparative study including 230 patients treated at a specialized center for endocrinology and diabetes from December 2017 to January 2018. Of the total 230 diabetic patients enrolled in this study, 46 were male and 184 were female, their age range was 20–70 years, and they were compared with 100 healthy individuals that served as control group. A questionnaire was administered as data collection form. Body mass index was estimated. Fasting blood glucose, HbA1c, and formed element indices were laboratory investigated and analyzed by using autohematology analyzer (Huroba ABX). Data were statistically analyzed using SPSS software version 17. Results: The results of the current study revealed that there were statistically significant differences in blood parameters such as red blood cell (RBC) and white blood cell (WBC) count, mean cell volume (MCV) level, and red cell distribution width (RDW) level (P ≤ 0.05), whereas no significant differences were recorded in RBC (hemoglobin, hematocrit, mean cell hemoglobin [MHC], and MCH concentration) and platelet (platelet count, MPV, and PDW) parameters (P ≥ 0.05) when compared with the control group. Conclusions: The present study concluded that blood parameters such as RBCs, MCV, RDW, and WBCs are significantly higher among diabetic patients.
  3,839 435 1
A profile on health-care services for old in Baghdad
Esraa Tariq, Riyadh Lafta
January-June 2018, 17(1):52-56
Background: The world is aging with people living longer and fewer children being born; the number of old people is increasing, and thus the aging of populations demands a comprehensive public health response. Objective: The objective of this study was to shed light on the health-care services for old people in age-friendly primary health-care centers (PHCCs) in Baghdad city in respect with its availability, accessibility, and utilization. Methods: This is a descriptive cross-sectional study that was conducted in 22 age-friendly PHCCs in Baghdad. The evaluation was based on the WHO age-friendly PHCCs toolkit. The checklist comprises a list of questions related to clinical services. Results: Wheelchairs were present in 100% of the centers, 85.7% of centers in Al-Karkh and 62.5% of centers in Al-Russafa have clear emergency exits, and all the centers have essential equipment and investigations. Free services for the elderly were not present in any of the centers; the referral system was weak with no feedback. Computerized health information system was present in only quarter of the centers. Conclusion: All the age-friendly PHCCs lack a special unit for the elderly. Most of the centers do not have a suitable source of drinking water. There are some criteria that comply with the WHO instructions, but there are other essential services that should be available to improve the health services and utilization of these services.
  3,918 343 -
Evaluation of awareness about pharmacovigilance and adverse drug reaction monitoring among medical professionals attending Central Leprosy Institute
Pugazhenthan Thangaraju, Sajitha Venkatesan, T Tamilselvan, Elavarasan Sivashanmugam, MK Showkath Ali
July-December 2018, 17(2):63-68
Background: The introduction of pharmacovigilance (PV) program helps in very early detection of adverse drug reactions (ADRs) and identification of risk factors and various measures to be taken once it happened. This study was aimed at investigating the knowledge and attitude of doctors in a research institute about ADR reporting and suggesting possible ways of improving ADR reporting. Materials and Methods: This study was a cross-sectional, questionnaire-based survey conducted at a tertiary care leprosy hospital which is a research institute. The respondents were doctors and students visiting this institute. The study instrument was a self-developed, prevalidated, semi-structured questionnaire of 25 questions. Results: A total of 55 questionnaires were considered for analysis, giving a response rate of 100%. In all, 87.93% of the respondents were aware about pharmacovigilance, 68.96% were aware of ADR reporting system in India, 91.37% opined that only serious ADR with any medicine should be reported, and 4.3% believed that ADR should be reported only for newly marketed agents. Although 88.79% of the respondents observed an ADR, only 31.03% reported it; 60% were aware about the complete step to be taken after ADR. The general attitude of the respondents about ADR reporting was as follows: ADR reporting should be mandatory (60.34%), voluntary (29.31%), and need base (10.34%) and the preferred mode to report should be phone (34.48%), dropbox (22.41%), E-mail (25.86%), and personal visit (8.6%). Nearly 77.58% of the respondents needed a complete feedback after the ADR reporting. Almost 51.72% of the respondents opted increasing awareness about PV through training/projects/continuing medical education, as the factor encouraging for ADR reporting, and 51.72% opted lack of knowledge about the process of reporting, as the factor discouraging ADR reporting. Conclusion: From the study, it was found that most of the doctors and students were unaware of the ADR reporting forms and their availability which should be sorted out in the institutional setting for better results.
  3,748 376 2
Determination of carbohydrate antigen 19-9 level in Sera of Iraqi patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus
Russul Riedh Al-Hamaoy, Hassan H Al-Saeed, Mahmood Shakir Khudhair
January 2019, 18(1):20-23
Background: Diabetes mellitus is a major medical problem worldwide that can be qualified as the last stage of chronic pancreatitis; on the other hand, chronic pancreatitis is considered as a risk factor for pancreatic cancer. Therefore, the evaluation of carbohydrate antigen 19-9 (CA 19-9) level in patients with diabetes mellitus makes it imperative to find normal range for CA 19-9 level for this patient to eliminate the additional interventional approaches. Objectives: The objectives of this study were to define the normal range (cutoff value) of CA 19-9 in type 2 diabetic patients using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays. Materials and Methods: This study included 80 patients diagnosed as type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) with mean age (46.5625 ± 1.1054 years) who were divided into two groups. In Group I, 40 patients with T2DM have a mean duration of (6.6 ± 0.9421 years) and take medication. Group II consisted of 40 patients who were newly diagnosed with type 2 diabetic and do not take medication. Totally, 40 healthy individuals with mean age (44.7 ± 1.4539) were classified as the control group. Results: The mean ± standard error (SE) serum level of CA 19-9 in patients with T2DM in Groups I and II was 30.22933 ± 3.2434 U/ml and 32.58443 ± 2.7997 U/ml, respectively, which was significantly higher than the mean ± SE serum level in control group (6.4328 ± 1.3087 U/ml). When using a serum CA 19-9 concentration of 49.5 U/ml as a cutoff value to differentiate between T2DM and pancreatic cancer, sensitivity was 88.8% and specificity 77.5%. Conclusion: Define the normal range (cutoff value) of CA 19-9 in type 2 diabetic patients is useful in discriminating pancreatic cancer patients from type 2 diabetic patients.
  3,721 304 -
The association of serum copper with ceruloplasmin and zinc with folic acid levels in recurrent pregnancy loss in Iraqi Women
Olaa Riad Kadim, Shatha M. J. Al-Khateeb, Esraa H Humadi
January 2019, 18(1):43-46
Background and Objectives: Recurrent pregnancy loss (RPL) is the most common adverse pregnancy outcome. Micronutrients include minerals and vitamins are essential for normal function, growth, and development. Minerals have important effects on the health of the mother and the fetus. Micronutrient deficiency during pregnancy can lead to obstetric complications and even fetal death. Materials and Methods: A total of 90 pregnant women included in this study were between 7 and 20 weeks of gestation, their age was 18–40 years, and they were divided into three main groups. Patients: Group 1, pregnant women diagnosed with missed miscarriage no = 30; Controls: Group 2, ongoing pregnancy no = 30; and Group 3, nonpregnant women no = 30. Serum copper (Cu) and zinc (Zn) were determined using flame atomic absorption spectrometry. While the serum ceruloplasmin (CP) was measured by immunoturbidimetric assay and folic acid (FA) by enzyme-linked immune sorbent assay. Results: Serum Cu and CP were significantly higher in the women with RPL compared with healthy groups. Moreover, the levels of Zn were significantly lower in in women with RPL compared with healthy control groups, and the result of serum FA was showed that there no significant variation in patients with RPL compared with control groups. Conclusions: The study showed that the alteration in the trace elements could participate with the RPL.
  3,648 331 -
A new horizon into the central effect of quercetin on human vigilance in normal healthy volunteers
Ali Kadhim Al-Buhadilly
January-June 2018, 17(1):14-18
Background: Quercetin is one of the dietary flavonoids found in citrus fruits and leafy vegetables as well as seeds and green tea. Its name comes from Quercetum and belongs to flavonol class which is not synthesized in the human body. Many studies revealed a significant effect of quercetin in advancing psychomotor/cognitive performances and reversing the neurotoxin-induced neuronal damage. Therefore, the present study aimed to illustrate the central effect of quercetin on human vigilance and in normal healthy volunteers. Subjects and Methods: A total of fifty healthy volunteers with a mean age of 23 years were enrolled in this experimental study; they were divided into two groups: Group I: twenty healthy volunteers treated with placebo (500 mg/day starch capsule) for 2 weeks and Group II: thirty healthy volunteers treated with quercetin 500 mg/day for 2 weeks. Each volunteer in each group was subjected to vigilance-psychomotor testing by Leeds psychomotor performance tester which measures Psychomotor-vigilance test (PVT) and Cortical arousal activity (CAA). Results: Quercetin produced a more significant effect on total reaction time, recognition reaction time, movement reaction time, fusion index, % fusion (P < 0.01), and flicker percentage (P < 0.05) compared to control, but quercetin produced an insignificant effect on CFFd, critical flicker-fusion frequency, and flicker index. Conclusion: Quercetin improves psychomotor performance and CAA in normal healthy volunteers.
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Competency-based medical education for undergraduates in India: Strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, challenges analysis and the way forward
Saurabh RamBihariLal Shrivastava, Prateek Saurabh Shrivastava
January-June 2020, 19(1):37-39
The much-awaited dream of many educationalists across India has finally turned into reality and we have shifted to the competency-based curriculum for the undergraduates from the 2019 academic year. With close to 4 months into this transition and implementation, we have realized a wide range of strengths-weaknesses-opportunities-challenges (SWOC) and it is the need of the hour to learn from the same and plan our curriculum in such a manner that the execution of the same can be significantly improved in the coming years. Even though, challenges are there, but it is important to understand and have a belief that all this has been done to improve the health care services offered to the general population. In conclusion, the competency-based curriculum for undergraduate students has to be looked upon as an opportunity to produce competent and globally acceptable doctors and thus it is high time that all the stakeholders accept this as a challenge and work in a concerted manner to accomplish the intended goals.
  3,501 382 1
Maternal–placental growth factor and the identification of fetuses with placental intrauterine growth restriction
Henan Dh Skheel Al Jebory, Asmaa Zubaid Alazzawy
January-June 2018, 17(1):36-41
Objective: This study was designed to discriminate between fetal growth restriction that is placentally mediated and constitutionally small fetuses depending on the measurement of placental growth factor (PlGF) in the maternal circulation. Study Design: This was a prospective case–control study. Settings: This study was conducted at the Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics at Al-Yarmouk Teaching Hospital. Patients and Methods: The study included 100 cases (11 placental intrauterine growth restriction [IUGR] and 89 constitutionally small) with singleton pregnancies. Serum PlGF was measured by ELISA technique. Concentration less than the 5th percentile for normal pregnancy was considered a positive PlGF test. Results: A positive PlGF test was found in 10 out of the 11 placental growth restriction cases and in 4 out of the 89 constitutionally small fetuses. PlGF can differentiate between IUGR due to placental dysfunction from constitutionally small fetuses with 90.1% sensitivity and 95.5% specificity. Conclusion: PlGF may serve as a promising tool to identify placental IUGR antenatally.
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Neurotrophic and neurotoxic effects of retinoic acid on human neural stem cell culture
Abdal-Jabbar F Al-Rubai
July-December 2018, 17(2):69-74
Background: Retinoic acid (RA) is one of the most critical molecules in the organic development of human being; it has been implicated in controlling of hundreds of genes which control several processes in human development. Furthermore, RA has negative insult on pregnancy outcome since it has teratogenic potential when used in high doses. Materials and Methods: Human neural stem cells are used in this study to test the effect RA in different doses on cell viability, cellular protein amount, neurite length, neurosphere sizes, reactive oxygen species (ROS) production, and migration distance. Results and Conclusions: Our results show that RA at low doses (2, 5 μM) preserve cell stemness and increase the sizes of neurospheres significantly, but at high doses, it appears that RA has a neurotoxic effect on these stem cells through significant increase in ROS which has negative effects on neurite length and cellular migration.
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Trends of under-five mortality in Nineveh (2004–2013): A time series analysis
Najlaa Ibrahim Mahmood Al-Sammak, Humam Ghanim Ibrahim
January 2019, 18(1):5-9
Context: Under-five mortality rate (U5MR) is the number of deaths since birth up to 5 years of age in a specific year divided by the number of live birth (LB) of the same year × 1000. It is a key indicator of child well-being including health and nutrition status, coverage of child survival interventions, and more broadly of social and economic development. Aim: The aim is to study U5MR and their cause trends in Nineveh Governorate for 10 years (2004–2013). Methodology: Design of the Study: This was a biometric (descriptive) study design. Sample of the Study: Under-five deaths plus LBs for the years 2004–2013 were taken. Research Settings: This study was carried out in Nineveh Governorate/Northwest of Iraq. Data Sources: The data were taken from vital registration system and death certificates. Outcome Measures: Various rates and proportions in addition to Chi-squared test for trend. Results: <5 MR varied from 17.83 in 2004 to 20.28/1000 LB in 2013 being worst in 2007 (26.28/1000LB) most of these deaths were among males. The main causes were respiratory distress syndrome, sepsis, congenital anomalies, infections, pneumonia, and accidents. Conclusions: About 20 children died every year for each of 1000 LBs before reaching their 5th birthday.
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