Category Archives: Volume 69

Psychotherapy, pharmacotherapy, and their combination in the treatment of major depressive disorder: How well are we making use of available therapies?

DOI: 10.2478/amma-2023-0042

Major depressive disorder stands as a profound challenge in the realm of psychiatric illnesses disrupting the well-being and daily existence of affected individuals. This heterogeneous condition continues to baffle researchers due to the elusive nature of its full neurological mechanisms. This review delves into the complex landscape of major depressive disorder, exploring the diverse therapeutic avenues available, from the nuanced realms of psychotherapy to the pharmacological and non-pharmacological approaches that have been the focus of extensive research. In the relentless pursuit of relief for those afflicted, substantial efforts and resources are tirelessly channeled into the exploration of novel antidepressants and the refinement of existing therapeutic protocols. This review juxtaposes the efficiencies of existing treatments, unraveling their comparative effectiveness, and shedding light on their respective strengths and limitations. Even so, the question remains, how well are we managing the treatment of major depressive disorder, and which is the best option not only to treat this condition but also to reach full remission. Consequently, we have compiled findings on treatment selections and how efficient they are in relation to each other. The more we understand how to treat depression effectively the more we can improve the quality of life of individuals affected by this disorder. By comprehensively evaluating the diverse modalities, this review aims to guide clinicians and researchers toward evidence-based decisions, facilitating the formulation of individualized and targeted treatment protocols.

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Gallbladder metastasis from occult lobular breast
carcinoma: A case report

DOI: 10.2478/amma-2023-0041

Introduction: Bones, lungs, brain and liver are the most common metastatic sites of breast carcinoma, although invasive lobular carcinoma can give metastases to less common sites, such as the gastrointestinal tract and the female genital tract.
Case presentation: We present the case of a 57-year-old female with colic abdominal pain that was sent to surgery for cholecystectomy. Histopathology revealed a poorly cohesive individual or in single file neoplastic cells infiltrating all layers of the gallbladder. Immunohistochemistry revealed these cells to be CK 116, CK7, GCDFP-15, ER and PR positive, and CK20, HER-2, S-100 and E-cadherin negative. PET/CT showed numerous lytic bone lesions, but ultrasound, mammography, MRI and PET/CT revealed no breast mass.
Conclusion: Although rare and poorly understood, metastases of invasive lobular carcinoma to gallbladder do exist in a minor percentage of patients, presenting usually as exacerbated cholecystitis. The problem are silent cases and patients with no history of breast carcinoma. This case is unique in that even after the diagnosis of metastatic lobular breast carcinoma to the gallbladder, the primary tumour of the breast was not detected.

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Marcus Gunn jaw-winking syndrome: A case report

DOI: 10.2478/amma-2023-0040

Marcus Gunn jaw wink phenomenon or Trigeminal oculomotor synkinesis, is a congenital disorder in which the upper lid moves synkinetically in response to jaw movement during chewing. The term synkinesis describes the simultaneous movement or a coordinated sequence of movements of muscles, which are supplied by different nerves or by separate peripheral branches of the same nerve. Although it rarely manifests bilaterally, it is typically unilateral. In 1883, Dr Robert Marcus Gunn, a Scottish Ophthalmologist described a 15-year-old girl with a peculiar type of congenital ptosis that included an associated winking motion of the affected eyelid on the movement of the jaw. It is known to affect both men and women equally. This phenomenon has been reported to be a similar phenomenon affecting 2-13% of all cases of congenital ptosis. It can be congenital or acquired, for example through trauma. The Congenital Marcus Gunn jaw wink phenomenon is thought to arise from the connection between the branch of the trigeminal nerve (responsible for chewing) supplying the middle or lateral pterygoid muscle and the branch of the oculomotor nerve supplying the upper superior levator ocular defect. Here we present a case report of Marcus Gunn’s Jaw-Winking Synkinesis in congenital ptosis.

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Histological patterns of testicular biopsy in patients with azoospermia: single-institution experience

DOI: 10.2478/amma-2023-0038

Objective of this study was to identify the histopathological patterns and their frequency in testicular biopsy specimens from azoospermic patients and to categorize it according to Modified Johnsen scoring system.
Methods: Testicular biopsies from male patients with clinical diagnosis of azoospermia were included in this study. All tissue samples were fixed in buffered 10% formalin, routinely processed and stained with Hematoxylin and Eosin. All cases were examined microscopically and categorized according to the histopathological patterns and Modified Johnsen scoring system.
Results: Total 219 cases of testicular biopsies from 125 azoospermic male patients were evaluated, with 94 cases of bilateral testicular biopsy. The most prevalent age group was of 30-39 years (66.2%). The most common histological pattern was of Sertoli cell only syndrome (58.4%) while the least represented pattern was germ cell maturation arrest, seen in 4.6% cases. The most common Modified Johnsen score was 2 (66.7%). There was discordance in histologic pattern in both testes in 12.76% of patients who had bilateral testicular biopsy.
Conclusion: Our study gives an insight on the most common histopathological patterns of azoospermic patients and emphasizes the need for a better national statistics and epidemiological studies of this entity. It also points out the significance of the bilateral testicular biopsy, as both, diagnostic and therapeutic procedure.

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Glial fibrillary acidic protein as a serum neuromarker of brain injury in pediatric patients with congenital heart defects undergoing cardiac surgery

DOI: 10.2478/amma-2023-0037

Objective: The aim of this study was to assess glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) as a marker of short-term neurodevelopmental delay in pediatric patients with congenital defects (CHD) after cardiovascular surgical intervention.
Methods: Included patients were screened by Denver Developmental Screening Test II scale a few days before and then at 4 to 6 months after the surgical intervention. Blood samples were collected preoperatory and at 24 hours after surgery; GFAP levels were assessed by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay using commercial kit form BioVendor.
Results: Forty children were enrolled and dichotomized into two groups based on peripheric oxygen saturation: cyanotic (<95%) and non-cyanotic (>=95%) group. 63% from our population had an abnormal neurodevelopmental outcome. Significant differences between groups were found in language domain scores preoperatory (p=0.03) and in fine motor domain postoperatory (p=0.03). In the postoperatory period, GFAP had significantly higher values (p=0.0248) in the cyanotic CHD group. Association between GFAP and NIRS were analyzed and significant differences were found in both groups with a good predicting model in the non-cyanotic CHD group (aria under curve of 0.7 for receiver operative characteristic). Higher GFAP levels from the postoperatory period correlated with neurodevelopmental impairment (mean value of: 0.66 ± 0.02ng/ml in those with good neurodevelopmental score, 0.69 ± 0.02ng/ml in those with low neurodevelopmental score, p=0.01).
Conclusions: GFAP could be a reliable neuromarker in identifying early acute brain injury documented by NIRS monitorization during perioperatory period and it also could identify short term neurodevelopmental impairment documented by lower neurodevelopmental scores.

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Predictors of anemia without active bleeding signs in patients referred for endoscopy

DOI: 10.2478/amma-2023-0036

Objective: The objective of the present study is to clarify the value of clinic, endoscopic, and histologic variables that may predict anemia in patients performing esophagogastroduodenoscopy for gastrointestinal complaints in the absence of bleeding signs or lower digestive disease.
Methods: This study included 654 patients referred for endoscopy that were divided based on biological parameters performed in the same day in the study group (306 patients diagnosed with anemia) and the control group (348 patients without anemia).
Results: Anemia is frequent in elderly patients, especially in the presence of premalignant gastric lesions, and it is associated with multiple comorbidities. In two multivariate regression models antivitamin K oral anticoagulants were found to be independently associated with anemia (p = 0.01), but not with antiplatelet therapy, or with non-antivitamin K anticoagulants. Multiple regression models support that epigastric pain and heartburn are inversely associated with anemia, while weight loss remained an independent predictor for simultaneous anemia and premalignant lesions. Non-infectious chronic gastritis (p<0.001) is an independent predictor for anemia and premalignant gastric lesions, increasing the odds of anemia by 2.2 times, while reactive gastropathy is inversely associated. Gastric erosions and ulcer remained independent predictors for concomitant anemia and premalignant lesions. 
Conclusions: Chronic inactive gastritis and premalignant gastric histologic lesions are predictors for anemia in endoscopic population, while active H. pylori infection is not. Dyspeptic symptoms, epigastric pain (p<0.001,OR 0.2-0.5) and heartburn (p<0.001,OR 0.07-0.3) are inversely associated with anemia alone or associated with premalignant gastric lesions.

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Diagnostic difficulties in a very rare case of mycoplasma pneumoniae uveitis

DOI: 10.2478/amma-2023-0035

Introduction: Mycoplasma pneumoniae is known as a common cause of respiratory tract infections, especially in children. Regarding extrapulmonary manifestations, many dysfunctions have been linked to circulating IgM antibodies, including eye diseases and disorders. In this report, we aim to highlight the importance of considering Mycoplasma pneumoniae a potential etiological agent that can cause significant eye structures inflammation. Case presentation: We present a case of a 22-year-old male patient who arrived at the Emergency Department complaining of visual acuity decrement. Fundoscopic examination outlined a pale optic nerve, covered by pre-papillary infiltrates and peripheric inflammatory infiltrates, accompanied by signs of vasculitis. Investigations were performed and a multidisciplinary assessment was conducted. General antibiotic and antimycotic treatment and topical non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drops were administrated but his symptoms were aggravating, although it was continuously upgraded. Antibodies for Mycoplasma pneumoniae were determined with positive IgM and macrolide antibiotherapy was administrated, with favorable evolution. Conclusions: Mycoplasma pneumoniae should not be excluded as a possible cause of severe ocular inflammations, even in asymptomatic patients. The patient’s management should include multidisciplinary assessment for an easier diagnosis in cases of uncertainty.

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Adrenocortical carcinoma: A tumor with poor answer to classic chemotherapy

DOI: 10.2478/amma-2023-0039

Introduction: Adrenocortical carcinoma (ACC) represents a rare endocrine malignancy being the second most aggressive endocrine cancer after anaplastic thyroid cancer. [1]. While most of them arise sporadically, up to 15% of adult ACC patients are related to germline mutations associated with familial cancer syndromes.[1,2]. Current treatment strategies include surgery as well as systemic therapy with mitotane and chemotherapy.
Case report: A 60-year-old female patient with a family history of colon cancer, multinodular goiter, hypothyroidism treated with substitutive therapy, uterine fibroids, and hypertension, was diagnosed with adrenocortical carcinoma. No distant metastasis were present at the moment of diagnosis so an adrenalectomy was performed. Due to postoperative complications, a total nephrectomy was also needed. Adjuvant Mitotane treatment was given. A CT exam performed 5 months after the resection showed multiple pulmonary metastasis, a liver nodule and peritoneal carcinomatosis. The standard first-line chemotherapy of choice was Carboplatin and Etoposide. After completing 3 cycles of chemotherapy the imaging reassessment show the progression of liver and peritoneal lesions and the quasi-complete regression of lung lesions. Currently, the Mitotate treatment was stopped due to severe adverse reactions.
Conclusions: Adrenocortical carcinoma is a rare endocrine malignancy with a poor prognosis. The recruitment of ACC patients for new clinical trials to investigate new treatment strategies is needed because currently, no significant therapeutic breakthrough is emerging.

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