Chemotherapy for Cholangiocarcinoma: An Update.

Chemotherapy for cholangiocarcinoma: An update.

World J Gastrointest Oncol. 2013 Jul 15; 5(7): 171-6
Ramírez-Merino N, Aix SP, Cortés-Funes H

Cholangiocarcinomas (bile duct cancers) are a heterogeneous group of malignancies arising from the epithelial cells of the intrahepatic, perihilar and extrahepatic bile ducts. Patients diagnosed with cholangiocarcinoma must be evaluated by a multidisciplinary team and be treated with individualized management. First of all, it is very important to define the potential resectability of the tumor because surgery is the main therapeutic option for these patients. Overall, cholangiocarcinomas have a very poor prognosis. The 5-year survival rate is 5%-10%. In cases with a potentially curative surgery, 5-year survival rates of 25%-30% are reported. Therefore, it is necessary to increase the cure rate from surgery, exploring the survival benefit of any adjuvant strategy. It is difficult to clarify the role of adjuvant treatment in localized and locally advanced cholangiocarcinomas. There are limited data and the role of adjuvant chemotherapy/chemoradiation in patients with resected biliary tract cancer is poorly defined. The most relevant studies in the adjuvant setting are one from Japan, the well known ESPAC-3 and BILCAP from the United Kingdom and a meta-analysis. We show the results of these trials. According to medical oncology guidelines, postoperative adjuvant therapy is widely recommended for all patients with intrahepatic or extrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma who have microscopically positive resection margins, as well as for those with a complete resection but node-positive disease. Clinical trials are ongoing. The locally advanced cholangiocarcinoma setting includes a heterogeneous mix of patients: (1) patients who have had surgery but with macroscopic residual disease; (2) patients with locally recurrent disease after potentially curative treatment; and (3) patients with locally unresectable disease at presentation. In these patients, surgery is not an option and chemoradiation therapy can prolong overall survival and provide control of symptoms due to local tumor effects. Nowadays, no neoadjuvant therapy can be considered a standard approach for the treatment of patients with cholangiocarcinoma. There are promising results and randomized trials are needed in patients with a metastatic cholangiocarcinoma. In systemic therapy, no single drug or combination has consistently increased median survival beyond the expected 8-12 mo. It is always recommended that patients enrol in clinical trials. Clinical trials have shown that the more standard chemotherapy for a first line regimen of gemcitabine plus cisplatin (or oxaliplatin as a potentially better tolerated agent) is superior to gemcitabine alone. Leucovorin-modulated 5-fluorouracil, capecitabine monotherapy or single agent gemcitabine are reasonable options for patients with a borderline performance status. After progression in patients with an adequate performance status, active regimens that could be considered include gemcitabine plus capecitabine, or erlotinib plus bevacizumab, for second line treatment. HubMed – drug

“Bath salts” induced severe reversible cardiomyopathy.

Am J Case Rep. 2013; 14: 288-91
Sivagnanam K, Chaudari D, Lopez P, Sutherland ME, Ramu VK

Patient: Male, 27 Final Diagnosis: Bath salt induced cardiomyopathy Symptoms: Agitation • fever • pedal edema Medication: Intravenous nor-epinephrine for less than 6 hours Clinical Procedure: – Specialty: Internal medicine • cardiology.Unusual clinical course.”Bath salts” is the street name for a group of recently identified and increasingly abused stimulant synthetic cathinones that are associated with multiple systemic effects. We present a case of a patient who developed reversible dilated cardiomyopathy secondary to their use.A 27 year old male with no past medical history was brought to emergency department with agitation. He had been inhaling and intravenously injecting “bath salts”, containing a mephedrone/Methylenedioxypyrovalerone (MDPV) combination. On presentation, he was tachycardic, hypotensive and febrile. His initial labs showed an elevated white count, creatinine and creatinine phosphokinase levels. His erythrocyte sedimentation rate; C-reactive protein; urinalysis; urine drug screen; Human Immunodeficiency Virus, hepatitis, coxsackie, and influenza serology were normal. EKG showed sinus tachycardia. An echocardiogram was done which showed dilated cardiomyopathy with an ejection fraction (EF) of 15-20% and global hypokinesia. A left heart catheterization was done and was negative for coronary artery disease. At a 20 week follow up, he had stopped abusing bath salts and was asymptomatic. A repeat echocardiogram showed an EF of 52%.Bath salts (MDPV, mephedrone) are synthetic cathinones with amphetamine/cocaine like properties with potential cardiotoxic effects. Cardiovascular manifestations reported include tachycardia, hypertension, myocardial infarction, arrhythmias and cardiac arrest. “Bath salts” can also cause severe reversible dilated cardiomyopathy. Prior to diagnosis, other causes of cardiomyopathy including ischemic, infectious, familial, immunological, metabolic and cytotoxic may need to be ruled out; as was done in our patient. HubMed – drug

Effect of microemulsions on transdermal delivery of citalopram: optimization studies using mixture design and response surface methodology.

Int J Nanomedicine. 2013; 8: 2295-304
Huang CT, Tsai MJ, Lin YH, Fu YS, Huang YB, Tsai YH, Wu PC

The aim of this study was to evaluate the potential of microemulsions as a drug vehicle for transdermal delivery of citalopram. A computerized statistical technique of response surface methodology with mixture design was used to investigate and optimize the influence of the formulation compositions including a mixture of Brij 30/Brij 35 surfactants (at a ratio of 4:1, 20%-30%), isopropyl alcohol (20%-30%), and distilled water (40%-50%) on the properties of the drug-loaded microemulsions, including permeation rate (flux) and lag time. When microemulsions were used as a vehicle, the drug permeation rate increased significantly and the lag time shortened significantly when compared with the aqueous control of 40% isopropyl alcohol solution containing 3% citalopram, demonstrating that microemulsions are a promising vehicle for transdermal application. With regard to the pharmacokinetic parameters of citalopram, the flux required for the transdermal delivery system was about 1280 ?g per hour. The microemulsions loaded with citalopram 3% and 10% showed respective flux rates of 179.6 ?g/cm(2) and 513.8 ?g/cm(2) per hour, indicating that the study formulation could provide effective therapeutic concentrations over a practical application area. The animal study showed that the optimized formulation (F15) containing 3% citalopram with an application area of 3.46 cm(2) is able to reach a minimum effective therapeutic concentration with no erythematous reaction. HubMed – drug

Pattern of mucocutaneous manifestations in human immunodeficiency virus-positive patients in North India.

Indian J Sex Transm Dis. 2013 Jan; 34(1): 19-24
Kore SD, Kanwar AJ, Vinay K, Wanchu A

Mucocutaneous diseases are among the first-recognized clinical manifestations of acquired immune deficiency syndrome. They function as visual markers in assessing the progression of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection. Given the relative ease of examination of skin, its evaluation remains an important tool in the diagnosis of HIV infection.To determine the pattern of mucocutaneous manifestations in HIV-positive patients and to correlate their presence with CD4 counts.This cross-sectional study included 352 HIV-infected patients seen at PGIMER, Chandigarh, India, over a period of 1 year. The patients were screened for mucocutaneous disorders by an experienced dermatologist. The patients were classified into different stages according to the World Health Organization clinical and immunological staging system.The most prevalent infection was candidiasis, seen in 57 patients (16.2%). Prevalence of candidiasis, dermatophytosis, herpes simplex, herpes zoster, molluscum contagiosum (MC), seborrheic dermatitis, adverse drug reaction, nail pigmentation, xerosis and diffuse hair loss differed statistically according to the clinical stages of HIV infection. There was a statistically significant association between immunological stages of HIV infection and dermatophytosis.Results of our study suggest that mucocutaneous findings occur throughout the course of HIV infection. Dermatoses like MC and dermatophytosis show an inverse relation with CD4 cell count, and these dermatoses can be used as a proxy indicator of advanced immunosuppression to start highly active anti-retroviral therapy in the absence of facilities to carry out CD4 cell count. HubMed – drug

Cutis laxa: a report of two interesting cases.

Indian J Dermatol. 2013 Jul; 58(4): 328
Mitra S, Agarwal AA, Das JK, Gangopadhyay A

Cutis laxa is a rare disease that may be either inherited or acquired. The acquired form is rarer than the inherited form. Pathogenesis of this disease is largely unknown. Two cases of acquired cutis laxa are reported here and neither of them had any systemic involvement or any history of drug intake. One of them had localized disease with history of preceding cutaneous inflammation. The other patient with generalized lesion lacked any history of preceding illness. The patient with localized lesion was treated satisfactorily by reconstructive surgery. The other patient had generalized involvement, for which no satisfactory treatment could be offered. HubMed – drug