Archive for November, 2008

Have we been underestimating the incidence of ‘rare’ diseases?

November 26, 2008

Published today in Journal of Medical Case Reports is a case series that has caught the eye of our Editor-in-Chief, Professor Michael Kidd. On “Report from Mongolia – How much do we know about the incidence of rare cases in less developed countries: a case series“, Professor Kidd says:

“Diseases which are currently considered to be rare in industrialized nations may occur at a higher frequency in less developed countries.

The reasons may not only be due to geographically different burdens of certain diseases, and limited diagnostic and therapeutic facilities but also may be due to limited opportunities for publication.

In this report of the cases of seven patients seen over a five month period in intensive care unit in a hospital in Mongolia, the authors make the first report in the medical literature of general exanthema and acute renal failure after ingestion of diesel fuel and the first report of Fournier gangrene complicating acute necrotizing pancreatitis.  Other interesting cases include a man with acute renal failure due to acetic acid intoxication and a man who presented with chest pain following ingestion of a metal needle which became embedded in his ventricular wall.

The authors ask whether the global incidence of certain conditions is underestimated in the current medical literature which is largely based on reports from highly developed countries. The authors invite readers to reflect on whether certain diseases assumed to be rare could occur more often in less developed countries.

The Journal of Medical Case Reports encourages submissions of interesting and important case reports from clinicians working in developing nations.”


Image Highlight: Axenfeld-Rieger syndrome

November 25, 2008

Pupillary abnormalities such as those shown in this image are one of the diagnostic features of Axenfield-Rieger syndrome, a condition that can lead to gradual and irreversible visual loss.

Figure: 1a Microdontia and hypodontia. 1b Slit pupil and iris atrophy right eye. 1c Corectopia with iris atrophy left eye. 1d Posterior embryotoxon right eye. 1e Posterior embryotoxon left eye. 1f Broad peripheral anterior synechiae right eye.


Read the case report of a 34-year-old man diagnosed with Axenfield-Rieger syndrome, complete with literature review.

New look for Journal of Medical Case Reports

November 17, 2008

Journal of Medical Case Reports has a new logo – the first of several changes to the journal website to be unveiled over the coming months.

Register with the journal to be the first to know about our new developments. homeheaderlogoimage_en_us

Are there new features that you would like to see? We welcome your suggestions!

Google Flu Trends predicts US flu activity

November 12, 2008

Google have launced a new online tool, Flu Trends, that can predict influenza outbreaks in different areas of the US. The tool works by monitoring how many flu-related internet searches are carried out – Google have previously correlated this with data on flu outbreaks from the US Center for Disease Control (see graph, below).

Users can check Flu Trends to check the level of ‘flu activity’ in their state day by day – currently Arkansas, Mississippi, Kentucky, Delaware, Maine and Hawaii have the highest incidence.

Has flu season reached your area yet? Don’t forget to write up a case report for your interesting cases, such as this recent report from En Kimura et al, “A reversible lesion of the corpus callosum splenium with adult influenza-associated encephalitis/encephalopathy“.


Anabolic steroid use resulting in multi-organ failure

November 5, 2008

A new article in JMCR from Ali Samaha and colleagues reports a case of multiple organ failure in a 24-year old man who had been taking testosterone injections three times a week for two months, as well as diuretics and amino acid 24739883supplements.

The patient presented at the emergency room with abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting, and was admitted for management with a primary diagnosis of acute pancreatitis, acute renal failure and hypercalcemia.

Read the case report in full here.