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Open access

Marlena Mueller, Fahim Ebrahimi, Emanuel Christ, Christian Andreas Nebiker, Philipp Schuetz, Beat Mueller, and Alexander Kutz

Background

Primary hyperparathyroidism is a prevalent endocrinopathy for which surgery is the only curative option. Parathyroidectomy is primarily recommended in younger and symptomatic patients, while there are still concerns regarding surgical complications in older patients. We therefore assessed the association of age with surgical outcomes in patients undergoing parathyroidectomy in a large population in Switzerland.

Methods

Population-based cohort study of adult patients with primary hyperparathyroidism undergoing parathyroidectomy in Switzerland between 2012 and 2018. The cohort was divided into four age groups (<50 years, 50–64 years, 65–74 years, ≥75 years). The primary outcome was a composite of in-hospital postoperative complications. Secondary outcomes were intensive care unit (ICU) admission, unplanned 30-day-readmission, and prolonged length of hospital stay.

Results

We studied 2642 patients with a median (IQR) age of 62 (53–71) years. Overall, 111 patients had complications including surgical re-intervention, hypocalcemia, and vocal cord paresis. As compared to <50 year-old patients, older patients had no increased risk for in-hospital complications after surgery (50–64 years: odds ratio (OR): 0.51 (95% CI, 0.28 to 0.92); 65–74 years: OR: 0.72 (95% CI, 0.39 to 1.33); ≥75 years: OR: 1.03 (95% CI, 0.54 to 1.95), respectively. There was also no association of age and rates of ICU-admission and unplanned 30-day-readmission, but oldest patients had longer hospital stays (OR: 2.38 (95% CI, 1.57 to 3.60)).

Conclusion

≥50 year-old patients undergoing parathyroidectomy had comparable risk of in-hospital complications as compared with younger ones. These data support parathyroidectomy in even older patients with primary hyperparathyroidism as performed in clinical routine.

Open access

Marianna Martino, Paolo Falcioni, Giulia Giancola, Alessandro Ciarloni, Gianmaria Salvio, Francesca Silvetti, Augusto Taccaliti, and Giorgio Arnaldi

Objective

Dysnatremia is common in hospitalized patients, often worsening the prognosis in pneumopathies and critical illnesses. Information on coronavirus disease-19 (COVID-19)-related hyponatremia is partially conflicting, whereas data on hypernatremia in this context are scarce. We assessed, in a cohort of COVID-19 inpatients: the prevalence of sodium alterations at admission and throughout their hospitalization; their association with inflammation/organ damage indexes; their short-term prognostic impact.

Study design and methods

117 patients (81 males, 64 ± 13 years) hospitalized for COVID-19 between 1 March and 30 April 2020 were retrospectively followed-up for their first 21 days of stay by collecting all serum sodium measurements, basal CRP and serum lactate levels, maximum IL-6 and information on care setting, required ventilation, length of hospitalization, in-hospital death.

Results

At admission, 26.5% patients had hyponatremia, and 6.8% had hypernatremia. During their hospitalization, 13.7% patients experienced both disorders ('mixed dysnatremia'). Lower sodium levels at admission were correlated with higher C reactive protein (CRP) (P = 0.039) and serum lactate levels (P = 0.019), but not interleukin-6 (IL-6). Hypernatremia and a wider sodium variability were associated with maximum required ventilation, need for ICU assistance and duration of the hospitalization. Mean estimated time to Intensive Care Unit (ICU) admission was 20 days shorter in patients exposed to sodium alterations at any time of their hospital course (log-rank test P = 0.032).

Conclusions

Sodium alterations frequently affect hospitalized COVID-19 patients. Hyponatremia could indicate pulmonary involvement, whereas hypernatremia is associated to prolonged hospitalization and the need for intensive care/mechanical ventilation, particularly when resulting from prior hyponatremia. Optimizing in-hospital sodium balance is crucial to improve patients’ prognosis.

Open access

Kyoungjune Pak, Seongho Seo, Myung Jun Lee, Keunyoung Kim, Sunghwan Suh, Hyung-Jun Im, and In Joo Kim

Brain dopamine neurotransmission is regulated by the dopamine transporter (DAT), which drives reuptake of extracellular dopamine into the presynaptic neurons. We hypothesized that the glucose loading dose would affect the striatal DAT availability. An i.v. bolus injection of 18F-FP-CIT was administered after infusion of low-dose glucose (300 mg/kg), high-dose glucose (600 mg/kg) or placebo (normal saline). The emission data were acquired over 90 min in 23 healthy male subjects. Substantial increases of binding potential (BPNDs) from ventral striatum (VST), caudate nucleus, and putamen were observed after low-dose glucose loading (+26.0, +87.0, and +37.8%) and after high-dose glucose loading (+10.4, +51.9, and +22.0%). BPNDs of the caudate nucleus and putamen showed significant differences (P = 0.0472 and 0.0221) after placebo, low-dose glucose, and high-dose glucose loading. BPNDs in the caudate nucleus and putamen after placebo, low-dose glucose, and high-dose glucose loading were positively intercorrelated with each other. In conclusion, striatal DAT changes after physiological glucose loading, but not after supraphysiological glucose loading in humans. DAT availabilities after placebo, low-dose glucose, high-dose glucose loading were correlated to each other in the caudate nucleus and putamen, but not in the VST. Therefore, sub-regional variability in DAT regulatory mechanisms mediated by insulin may exist in humans.

Open access

Clara Lundetoft Clausen, Åse Krogh Rasmussen, Trine Holm Johannsen, Linda Maria Hilsted, Niels Erik Skakkebæk, Pal Bela Szecsi, Lise Pedersen, Thomas Benfield, and Anders Juul

The hypothalamic–pituitary–thyroid hormone axis might be affected in COVID-19, but existing studies have shown varying results. It has been hypothesized that hyperinflammation, as reflected by the secretion of cytokines, might induce thyroid dysfunction among patients with COVID-19. We explored thyroid hormone involvement in the acute phase of symptomatic COVID-19 and its possible associations with cytokine levels and mortality risk. This was a single-center study of 116 consecutive patients hospitalized for moderate-to-severe COVID-19 disease. Serum concentrations of thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH), free thyroxine (T4), and 45 cytokines/chemokines were measured in all patients within 3 days of admission. Data were extracted retrospectively through a manual review of health records. At admission, 95 (81.9%) were euthyroid; while 21 (18.1%) had biochemically thyroid dysfunction including subclinical thyrotoxicosis (n = 11), overt thyrotoxicosis (n = 2), hypothyroidism (n = 1), non-thyroidal illness (n = 2), and normal TSH but high free T4 (n = 5). TSH levels were inversely correlated with IL-8 (r s = –0.248), IL-10 (r s = –0.253), IL-15 (r s = –0.213), IP-10 (r s = –0.334), and GM-CSF (r s = –0.254). Moreover, IL-8 levels, IP-10, and GM-CSF were significantly higher in patients with serum TSH < 0.4 mIU/L. Lastly, a two-fold increment of IL-8 and IL-10 was associated with significantly higher odds of having TSH < 0.4 mIU/L (odds ratio 1.86 (1.11–3.10) and 1.78 (1.03–3.06)). Serum TSH was not associated with 30- or 90-day mortality. In conclusion, this study suggests that fluctuations of TSH levels in patients with COVID-19 may be influenced by circulating IL-8, IL-10, IL-15, IP-10, and GM-CSF as previously described in autoimmune thyroid diseases.

Open access

Yuanyuan Li, Dongmei Li, and Xingbo Cheng

Objective

Gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) is common worldwide and seriously threatens maternal and infant health. The expression of non-coding (ncRNA) is tissue-specific and highly stable in eukaryotic cells and the circulatory system, which can act as an early molecular marker of GDM.

Methods

The differential expression of lncRNA and mRNA in the peripheral blood of patients with GDM (experimental group) and healthy pregnant women (control group) was analysed via lncRNA gene chip. Employing biological function clustering and KEGG signalling pathway analysis, we selected the mRNAs and lncRNAs closely related to the insulin signalling pathway of GDM to analyse the possible regulatory mechanism in the pathogenesis of GDM. The sequencing results were further verified via quantitative PCR (Q-PCR).

Results

LncRNA microarray analysis revealed 7498 genes (3592 upregulated, 3906 downregulated) differentially expressed in the GDM group and healthy pregnant women control group, including 1098 differentially expressed lncRNAs (609 upregulated, 489 downregulated). According to the regulatory pathway of the lncRNA mRNA network, 6 lncRNAs and 4 mRNAs were found to play a significant role in insulin resistance.

Conclusions

The lncRNAs ERMP1, TSPAN32 and MRPL38 form a co-expression network with TPH1, which is mainly involved in the tryptophan metabolism pathway and in the development of GDM. Moreover, lncRNA RPL13P5 forms a co-expression network with the TSC2 gene via the PI3K-AKT and insulin signalling pathways, which are involved in the process of insulin resistance in GDM.

Open access

Xichang Wang, Xiaochun Teng, Chenyan Li, Yushu Li, Jing Li, Weiping Teng, Zhongyan Shan, and Yaxin Lai

Objective

To conduct a questionnaire survey of the current clinical practice for overt hyperthyroidism in China.

Methods

An online questionnaire survey was conducted in July 2020. The two questionnaires covered 35 and 8 questions about non-pregnancy and pregnancy clinical practice for overt hyperthyroidism, respectively.

Results

One thousand, two hundred fifty-six physicians participated. Chief physicians and associate chief physicians accounted for 58.6% of the participants. Approximately 95.2% of the respondents chose the thyrotropin receptor antibody (TRAb) test to clarify the etiology of thyrotoxicosis, while only 27.0% of them chose radioactive iodine uptake (RAIU). In terms of treatment for non-pregnant patients, anti-thyroid drugs (ATDs) were the first choice, and most of the clinicians chose methimazole. Compared with clinicians in recent studies, Chinese physicians used serum TRAb to diagnose Graves’ disease more commonly, and there were obviously more physicians preferring ATDs. For maternal hyperthyroidism, most physicians preferred propylthiouracil administration before or during the first trimester, which is consistent with the 2016 American Thyroid Association (ATA) guidelines. In terms of the initial ATD dose, monitoring the treatment process, indications for ATD withdrawal and treatment of special cases, the preferences of Chinese physicians were generally consistent with the guidelines.

Conclusion

Chinese physicians can generally follow the ATA guidelines for the diagnosis and treatment of hyperthyroidism. Moreover, there are small differences from foreign studies or the guidelines with respect to particular problems. These findings provide evidence for future clinical research in China.

Open access

Richard J Auchus

Open access

Liselot Koelman, Robin Reichmann, Claudia Börnhorst, Matthias B Schulze, Cornelia Weikert, Ronald Biemann, Berend Isermann, Andreas Fritsche, and Krasimira Aleksandrova

Objective

Chemerin is a novel inflammatory biomarker suggested to play a role in the development of metabolic disorders, providing new avenues for treatment and prevention. Little is known about the factors that predispose elevated chemerin concentrations. We therefore aimed to explore a range of lifestyle-associated, dietary, and metabolic factors as potential determinants of elevated chemerin concentrations in asymptomatic adults.

Design

We used cross-sectional data from a random subsample of 2433 participants (1494 women and 939 men) aged 42–58 years of the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition-Potsdam cohort.

Methods

Random forest regression (RFR) was applied to explore the relative importance of 32 variables as statistical predictors of elevated chemerin concentrations overall and by sex. Multivariable-adjusted linear regression was applied to evaluate associations between selected predictors and chemerin concentrations.

Results

Results from RFR suggested BMI, waist circumference, C-reactive protein, fatty liver index, and estimated glomerular filtration rate as the strongest predictors of chemerin concentrations. Additional predictors included sleeping duration, alcohol, red and processed meat, fruits, sugar-sweetened beverages (SSB), vegetables, dairy, and refined grains. Collectively, these factors explained 32.9% variation of circulating chemerin. Multivariable-adjusted analyses revealed linear associations of elevated chemerin with metabolic parameters, obesity, longer sleep, higher intakes of red meat and SSB, and lower intakes of dairy.

Conclusions

These findings come in support of the role of chemerin as a biomarker characterizing inflammatory and metabolic phenotypes in asymptomatic adults. Modifiable dietary and lifestyle-associated determinants of elevated chemerin concentrations require further evaluation in a prospective study setting.

Open access

Xiaomei Zhang, Zhangrong Xu, Xingwu Ran, and Linong Ji

Background

Lower extremity arterial disease (LEAD) is highly prevalent in people with diabetes in China, but half of cases are underdiagnosed due to diversities of clinical presentations and complexities of diagnosis approaches. The purpose of this study was to develop a risk score model for LEAD to facilitate early screening among type 2 diabetes (T2DM) patients.

Methods

A total of 8313 participants with T2DM from the China DIA-LEAD study, a multicenter, cross-sectional epidemiological study, were selected as the training dataset to develop a risk score model for LEAD by logistic regression. The area under receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) and bootstrapping were utilized for internal validation. A dataset of 287 participants consecutively enrolled from a teaching hospital between July 2017 and November 2017 was used as external validation for the risk score model.

Results

A total of 931 (11.2%) participants were diagnosed as LEAD in the training dataset. Factors including age, current smoking, duration of diabetes, blood pressure control, low density lipoprotein cholesterol, estimated glomerular filtration rate, and coexistence of cardio and/or cerebrovascular disease correlated with LEAD in logistic regression analysis and resulted in a weighed risk score model of 0–13. A score of ≥5 was found to be the optimal cut-off for discriminating moderate–high risk participants with AUC of 0.786 (95% CI: 0.778–0.795). The bootstrapping validation showed that the AUC was 0.784. Similar performance of the risk score model was observed in the validation dataset with AUC of 0.731 (95% CI: 0.651–0.811). The prevalence of LEAD was 3.4, 12.1, and 27.6% in the low risk (total score 0–4), moderate risk (total score 5–8), and high risk (total score 9–13) groups of LEAD in the training dataset, respectively, which were 4.3, 19.6, and 30.2% in the validation dataset.

Conclusion

The weighed risk score model for LEAD could reliably discriminate the presence of LEAD in Chinese with T2DM aged over 50 years, which may be helpful for a precise risk assessment and early diagnosis of LEAD.

Open access

Jyotsna S Jagai, Alison K Krajewski, Kyla N Price, Danelle T Lobdell, and Robert M Sargis

Environmental parameters, including built and sociodemographic environments, can impact diabetes control (DC). Epidemiological studies have associated specific environmental factors with DC; however, the impact of multidimensional environmental status has not been assessed. The Environmental Quality Index (EQI), a comprehensive quantitative metric capturing five environmental domains, was considered as an exposure. Age-adjusted rates of DC prevalence for each county in the United States were used as an outcome. DC was defined as the proportion of adults aged 20+ years with a previous diabetes diagnosis who currently do not have high fasting blood glucose (≥126 mg/dL) or elevated HbA1c (≥6.5). We conducted county-level analyses of DC prevalence rates for the years 2004–2012 in association with EQI for 2006–2010 and domain-specific indices using random intercept multilevel linear regression models clustered by state and controlled for county-level rates of obesity and physical inactivity. Analyses were stratified by rural–urban strata, and results are reported as prevalence rate differences (PRD) with 95% CIs comparing highest quintile/worst environmental quality to lowest quintile/best environmental quality. The association of DC with cumulative environmental quality was negative after control for all counties (PRD −0.32, 95% CI: −0.38, −0.27); suggesting that rates of DC worsen as environmental quality declines. While overall environmental quality exerts effects on DC that vary across the rural–urban spectrum, poor sociodemographic, and built environmental factors are associated with decreased DC nationally. These data suggest improvements in environmental quality mediated by larger-scale policy and practice interventions may improve glycemic control and reduce the morbidity and mortality arising from hyperglycemia.