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Recent Submissions

  • The Human Mesenteric Lymph Node Microbiome Differentiates Between Crohn's Disease and Ulcerative Colitis.

    Kiernan, Miranda G; Coffey, J Calvin; McDermott, Kieran; Cotter, Paul D; Cabrera-Rubio, Raul; Kiely, Patrick A; Dunne, Colum P (Journal of Crohn's and Colitis, 2019-01-01)
    Mesenteric lymph nodes are sites in which translocated bacteria incite and progress immunological responses. For this reason, understanding the microbiome of mesenteric lymph nodes in inflammatory bowel disease is important. The bacterial profile of Crohn’s disease mesenteric lymph nodes has been analysed using culture-independent methods in only one previous study. This study aimed to investigate the mesenteric lymph node microbiota from both Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis patients.
  • Joint association of urinary sodium and potassium excretion with cardiovascular events and mortality: prospective cohort study.

    O'Donnell, Martin; Mente, Andrew; Rangarajan, Sumathy; McQueen, Matthew J; O'Leary, Neil; Yin, Lu; Liu, Xiaoyun; Swaminathan, Sumathi; Khatib, Rasha; Rosengren, Annika; Ferguson, John; Smyth, Andrew; Lopez-Jaramillo, Patricio; Diaz, Rafael; Avezum, Alvaro; Lanas, Fernando; Ismail, Noorhassim; Yusoff, Khalid; Dans, Antonio; Iqbal, Romaina; Szuba, Andrzej; Mohammadifard, Noushin; Oguz, Atyekin; Yusufali, Afzal Hussein; Alhabib, Khalid F; Kruger, Iolanthe M; Yusuf, Rita; Chifamba, Jephat; Yeates, Karen; Dagenais, Gilles; Wielgosz, Andreas; Lear, Scott A; Teo, Koon; Yusuf, Salim (BMJ, 2019-03-13)
    To evaluate the joint association of sodium and potassium urinary excretion (as surrogate measures of intake) with cardiovascular events and mortality, in the context of current World Health Organization recommendations for daily intake (<2.0 g sodium, >3.5 g potassium) in adults.
  • Transcriptome level analysis in Rett syndrome using human samples from different tissues.

    Shovlin, Stephen; Tropea, Daniela (Orphanet Journal of Rare Diseases, 2018-07-11)
    The mechanisms of neuro-genetic disorders have been mostly investigated in the brain, however, for some pathologies, transcriptomic analysis in multiple tissues represent an opportunity and a challenge to understand the consequences of the genetic mutation. This is the case for Rett Syndrome (RTT): a neurodevelopmental disorder predominantly affecting females that is characterised by a loss of purposeful movements and language accompanied by gait abnormalities and hand stereotypies. Although the genetic aetiology is largely associated to Methyl CpG binding protein 2 (MECP2) mutations, linking the pathophysiology of RTT and its clinical symptoms to direct molecular mechanisms has been difficult. One approach used to study the consequences of MECP2 dysfunction in patients, is to perform transcriptomic analysis in tissues derived from RTT patients or Induced Pluripotent Stem cells. The growing affordability and efficiency of this approach has led to a far greater understanding of the complexities of RTT syndrome but is also raised questions about previously held convictions such as the regulatory role of MECP2, the effects of different molecular mechanisms in different tissues and role of X Chromosome Inactivation in RTT. In this review we consider the results of a number of different transcriptomic analyses in different patients-derived preparations to unveil specific trends in differential gene expression across the studies. Although the analyses present limitations- such as the limited sample size- overlaps exist across these studies, and they report dysregulations in three main categories: dendritic connectivity and synapse maturation, mitochondrial dysfunction, and glial cell activity. These observations have a direct application to the disorder and give insights on the altered mechanisms in RTT, with implications on potential diagnostic criteria and treatments.
  • Activation of a TLR9 mediated innate immune response in preeclampsia.

    Williamson, Rachel D; McCarthy, Fergus P; Kenny, Louise C; McCarthy, Cathal M (Scientific Reports, 2019-04-11)
    Preeclampsia is a multisystemic disorder leading to the development of a placental ischemic microenvironment with a resultant increase in oxidative stress. There is evidence that mitochondrial dysfunction and the innate immune system both play a role in the pathophysiology of this disease. Mitochondrial DAMPs such as mtDNA bind specifc pattern recognition receptors such as Toll-like receptor 9 (TLR9) on the endosomal surface of immune cells, in particular neutrophils, subsequently activating them and triggering an innate response. We hypothesised that the exaggerated innate immune response seen in preeclampsia is provoked by dysfunctional mitochondria. Here we provide evidence that TLR9 activity is signifcantly increased at time of disease in women with preeclampsia. Furthermore, we show activation of neutrophil markers, Calprotectin, Myeloperoxidase (MPO), and IL-8 are signifcantly increased at time of disease compared to uncomplicated pregnancies. This research supports a potential role of TLR9 activation of an innate immune response evident in preeclampsia which may possibly be initially triggered by dysfunctional mitochondria.
  • Mycoplasma Pneumonia: Late Treatment Leading to Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome and Renal Failure.

    Cummiskey, A Graham; Reardon, Michael (European Journal of Case Reports in Internal Medicine, 2019-01-01)
    Mycoplasma pneumonia is one of the most common types of pneumonia, although it is often not diagnosed due to mild clinical course.
  • An Unusual Case of a Facial Guard Causing Penetrating Soft Tissue Injury in the Game of Hurling

    Farrell, T; McDonald, C.; Sheehan, E. (Irish Medical Journal, 2019-02)
    Hurling is a fast-paced impact sport that is known to be associated with trauma to the head, face and hands1. Helmets with facial guards have been introduced by the Gaelic athletic association (GAA) in 2010 as a means of preventing head and maxillofacial injuries. Although the national safety authority of Ireland (NSAI) identify certain standards for hurling helmets, modifications are known to be quite common2. A recent study by O’Connor (2018) showed that 31% of players surveyed from a total of 304 had modified their helmet in some fashion either by changing the faceguard completely or removal of single bars. The main reasons given for modification were; restricted vision, comfort and perceived poor quality of the helmet/faceguard. Anecdotally, players may modify one’s helmet to help improve peripheral vision and thus situational awareness. In the literature, there exists only one case of penetrating injury from a facial guard of a hurling helmet3. The trend of modifying helmets seems to be increasing the incidence of these serious injuries. We believe that there is a general lack of awareness among players and officials as to the dangers of modifying protective equipment. We present the case of a penetrating hand injury as a direct result of a modified facial guard where a single bar was removed.
  • A Case of Paget-Schroetter Syndrome in a Young Male After Lifting Weights

    Umana, E.; Elsherif, M.; Binchy, J. (Irish Medical Journal, 2019-02)
    Paget-Schroetter Syndrome (PSS) or effort thrombosis of the axillary-subclavian venous axis is a rare disease affecting healthy young adults which requires a high index of suspicion to diagnose. Management often requires not only anticoagulation but also thrombolysis with first rib resection to prevent recurrence and complications. We present a case of a 31-year-old male who presented to our emergency department with pain and swelling of his left upper limb. He was diagnosed with PSS and underwent; anticoagulation, catheter directed thrombolysis and planned for first rib resection.
  • Kicking off a Retropharyngeal Abscess

    Rana, A; Heffernen, L; Binchy, J (Irish Medical Journal, 2019-03)
    Retropharyngeal abscesses (RPA) are deep neck space infections that can pose an immediate life-threatening emergency, such as airway obstruction. [1] The potential space can become infected by bacteria spreading from a contiguous area [2] or direct inoculation from penetrating trauma. [3] Infection is often polymicrobial (most commonly group A beta-hemolytic streptococci). [4
  • Meconium Ileus in Two Irish Newborns: The Presenting Feature of Cystic Fibrosis

    Smith, A.; Ryan, E; O’Keeffe, D; O’Donovan, D. (Irish Medical Journal, 2019-03)
    Cystic Fibrosis (CF) is the most common genetically inherited disease in Ireland1. Approximately 1/ 2,300 infants per year are born with CF in Ireland2. Newborn bloodspot screening (NBS) screening for CF was introduced to Ireland in 20113. NBS screening for CF is associated with improved lung function, nutritional status and increased survival into early adulthood4. Therefore early recognition and management of this chronic condition is vital to ensuring optimal patient management.
  • Ustekinumab-induced subacute cutaneous lupus.

    Tierney, Emma; Kirthi, Shivashini; Ramsay, Bart; Ahmad, Kashif (JAAD Case Reports, 2019-03-01)
    Drug-induced lupus erythematosus (DILE) is a lupus-like syndrome temporally related to continuous drug exposure. DILE can be divided into systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), subacute cutaneous lupus erythematosus (SCLE) and chronic cutaneous lupus.1 Hydrochlorothiazide was the first drug associated with SCLE in 1985,2 but at least 100 other agents have since been reported to induce/exacerbate SCLE, with terbinafine, tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α inhibitors, antiepileptics, and proton pump inhibitors, the most frequently associated medications. We present a case of ustekinumab-induced SCLE in a patient being treated for psoriasis.
  • Is birth weight the major confounding factor in the study of gestational weight gain?: an observational cohort study.

    O'Higgins, Amy C; Doolan, Anne; McCartan, Thomas; Mullaney, Laura; O'Connor, Clare; Turner, Michael J (BMC Pregnancy & Childbirth, 2018-06-07)
    Much interest has been focussed on both maternal obesity and gestational weight gain (GWG), particularly on their role in influencing birth weight (BW). Several large reviews have reported that excessive GWG is associated with an increase in BW Women were enrolled at their convenience before 18 weeks gestation. Height and weight were measured accurately at the first antenatal visit and BMI calculated. Maternal weight was measured again after 37 weeks gestation. The weight of the baby was measured at birth. Relationships were tested using linear regression analysis, chi-squared tests and t-tests as appropriate. Of the 522 women studied, the mean BMI was 25.3 kg/m The positive correlation between GWG in pregnancy and BW can be accounted for by the contribution of fetal weight to GWG antenatally without a contribution from increased maternal adiposity. There was a wide range of BW irrespective of the degree of GWG and obese women had a lower GWG than non-obese women. These findings help explain why Randomized Controlled Trials (RCTs) designed to reduce GWG have failed to decrease BW and suggest there is no causative link between excessive GWG and increased BW.
  • Analysis of inflammatory cytokine and TLR expression levels in Type 2 Diabetes with complications.

    Gupta, Saket; Maratha, Ashwini; Siednienko, Jakub; Natarajan, Anandan; Gajanayake, Thusitha; Hoashi, Shu; Miggin, Sinéad (Scientific Reports, 2017-08-09)
    The pathogenesis and complications of type 2 diabetes (T2DM) are closely linked with defective glucose metabolism, obesity, cardiovascular disease and an inability to mount an effective immune response to certain pathogenic organisms. Perturbations in key innate immune receptors known as Toll-like receptors (TLRs) and inflammatory mediators such as IL-6, TNFα and IL-1β have been linked with T2DM. Herein, we sought to establish whether patients with T2DM and underlying complications exhibit perturbations in cytokine and TLR expression. Serum cytokine and mRNA levels of cytokines/TLRs in monocytes (M) and neutrophils (N) were measured in a cohort of 112 diabetic patients: good glycaemic control without complications (GC), good glycaemic control with complications (GCC), poor glycaemic control without complications (PC) and poor glycaemic control with complications (PCC) and compared them with 34 non-diabetic volunteers (NGT). Serum cytokine levels were normal in all study participants. In the GC group, cytokine and TLR gene expression were enhanced compared to NGT. In contrast, suppressed cytokine and TLR gene expression were evident in PC, GCC & PCC groups when compared to the GC. In conclusion, whereas serum pro-inflammatory cytokine levels are unaltered in T2DM patients, differences in inflammatory gene profiles exist among the T2DM patient groups.
  • Intramuscular versus intravenous oxytocin to prevent postpartum haemorrhage at vaginal delivery: randomised controlled trial.

    Adnan, Nita; Conlan-Trant, Rebecca; McCormick, Ciara; Boland, Fiona; Murphy, Deirdre J (BMJ, 2018-09-04)
    To determine whether intravenous oxytocin is more effective than intramuscular oxytocin at preventing postpartum haemorrhage at vaginal delivery. Double blind placebo controlled randomised trial. University affiliated maternity unit in the Republic of Ireland. 1075 women aged 18 years or older, at term with a singleton pregnancy who were aiming for a vaginal delivery with an actively managed third stage of labour.
  • High Rates of Diabetic Ketoacidosis in Patients with New and Known Type 1 Diabetes over a Six-Year Period

    Finn, B.P.; Trayer, J.; Cronin, C.; O’Connell, S.M (Irish Medical Journal, 2019-03)
    Ireland is a high incidence country for type 1 diabetes (T1DM) with 28.8 newly diagnosed cases/100,000/year1. Patients with new onset T1DM frequently (15-70%) present with diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA)2,3,4,5. Lansdown et al found that 25% of children with new onset T1DM under 19 years of age presented in DKA in Wales between 1991 and 20096. The rates of DKA in known T1DM on an international stage remains significant- Austria and Germany (5%), Wales and England (6.4%) and the United States (7.1%)7. The aim of our study was to analyse all admissions with diabetic ketoacidosis to the regional paediatric diabetes centre at Cork University Hospital, over the past six years. Our objectives include assessing the proportion of patients with new and known T1DM, treatment modalities (e.g. pump/multiple daily injections), patient demographics, severity, length of stay and outcomes.
  • Infliximab Induced Cardiac Tamponade

    O’Morain, N; Kumar, L; O’Carroll-Lolait, C; Alakkari, A; Ryan, B (Irish Medical Journal, 2019-03)
    Biologic therapies are increasingly used in the treatment of Inflammatory Bowel Disease. Reactions to infusion therapy are not uncommon but are mostly benign and self-limiting. Rarely, life-threatening complications can occur.
  • Continuous Glucose Monitoring in the Management of Neonatal Hypoglycaemia

    McGlacken-Byrne, S.M; O’Neill, R.; Jenkinson, A.; Murphy, J.F.A. (Irish Medical Journal, 2019-03)
    A quality improvement project was carried out in a Level 3 Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) which aimed to successfully implement the use of continuous glucose monitoring systems (CGMS) in hypoglycaemic infants. Piloting of the device revealed several potential practical barriers to its reliably successful implementation. Five Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) cycles followed, tackling these problems and other issues inductively identified throughout the project. Parents and multi-professional stakeholders were involved and consulted throughout. Change was measured on a runchart using qualitative and quantitative feedback. Problem rate per patient was reduced to zero by the end of a one-month study period. This study used basic quality improvement methodologies to implement a change intervention in a structured manner and elucidated aspects of its use that need to be adapted for its successful incorporation into real-life clinical practice.
  • Scope and Safety of Paediatric Surgery in a Model III Hospital

    Joyce, P.D; Craig, R; Dakin, A.; Elsheik, E.; Ejaz, T.; Mansoor, S.; Toomey, D.P. (Irish Medical Journal, 2019-03)
    In 2016 the Faculty of Paediatrics in the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland, in conjunction with the Royal College of in Surgeons Ireland and the Health Service Executive, published the National Clinical Programme for Paediatrics and Neonatology: improving services for general paediatric surgery1. The purpose of these guidelines was to ensure the provision of safe and efficient paediatric general surgery outside of specialist paediatric hospitals in both local and regional paediatric surgical facilities. These guidelines were necessitated by a variety of factors including the retirement of a generation of consultant surgeons with paediatric surgical skills, a lack of paediatric surgical training for core trainees, increasing sub-specialisation within the field of general surgery with the resultant de-skilling of supporting anaesthetic, radiology and nursing colleagues, and inadequate funding of paediatric surgical services. These challenges are compounded by Ireland having the lowest number of paediatric surgeons per capita when compared to other European countries, despite having the highest birth rate in Western Europe1.
  • Is It Time To Review The Vaccination Strategy To Protect Adults Against Invasive Pneumococcal Disease?

    Corcoran, M; Mereckiene, J; Murchan, S; McElligott, M; O’Flanagan, D; Cotter, S; Cunney, R; Humphreys, H (Irish Medical Journal, 2019-03)
    Pneumococcal conjugate vaccines (PCVs) have reduced the predominant serotypes causing invasive pneumococcal disease (IPD). We assessed the impact of the paediatric 7- and 13-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccines (PCV7 and PCV13) among older adults. We compared serotype-specific incidence rates from 2007/08 to 2016/17, expressed as incidence rate ratios (IRR). Introducing PCV7 and PCV13 into the childhood immunisation programme resulted in a decline in these serotypes in adults ≥65 years of age, with PCV7 serotypes decreasing by 85% (IRR=0.11, 95%CI: 0.05-0.22, p<0.0001) and PCV13 serotypes not included in PCV7 (PCV13-7), decreasing by 9% (IRR=0.68, 95%CI: 0.40-1.16, p=0.134). However, there was a significant increase in serotypes only found in the 23-valent polysaccharide vaccine, PPV23-PCV13: IRR=2.57, 95%CI: 1.68-4.03, p<0.0001, and non-vaccine types (NVTs), IRR=3.33, 95%CI: 1.75-6.84, p=0.0001. The decline of IPD associated with PCV7/13 serotypes and the increase in PPV23-PCV13 serotypes indicates clear serotype replacement. Increasing PPV23 uptake could still reduce the burden of disease for this population.
  • Caecal Epiploic Appendagitis Masquerading Clinically as an Acute Appendicitis: A Case Report and Brief Literature Review.

    Ejaz, Tallat; Saad, Eltaib; Nabil, Andik; Slattery, James (Case Reports in Surgery, 2019-01-01)
    A 46-year-old female presented to our emergency department (ED) with a 2-day history of right lower abdominal pain which was associated with nausea and anorexia. Abdominal examination revealed tenderness in the right iliac fossa (RIF) with rebound tenderness and a localized guarding. Urine dipstick was normal, and the pregnancy test was negative. Her laboratory investigations were significant only for a CRP of 16.6. A presumptive clinical diagnosis of acute appendicitis was suggested based on the given history and relevant physical signs. However, an abdominal computed tomography (CT) scan revealed an epiploic appendagitis of the caecum with a normal-looking appendix. She was managed conservatively and responded well and was discharged after 2 days in good health. Though being a relatively rare case of acute localized right-sided lower abdominal pain, caecal epiploic appendagitis should be considered as one of the differential diagnoses with the final diagnosis reached usually by the radiological findings due to the nonspecific nature of clinical and laboratory features.
  • Are we Over-Imaging the Obese Patient with Suspected Pulmonary Embolus in Ireland

    Gargan, M.L; O'Sullivan, M.; Hunter, K.; Buckley, O.; Torreggiani, W.C (Irish Medical Journal, 2019-02)
    To assess if there was a significant difference in the number of positive studies for pulmonary embolism between obese and non obese patients.

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