Scielo RSS <![CDATA[SAMJ: South African Medical Journal]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/rss.php?pid=0256-957420110005&lang=en vol. 101 num. 5 lang. en <![CDATA[SciELO Logo]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/img/en/fbpelogp.gif http://www.scielo.org.za <![CDATA[<b>Where have all the flowers gone?</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500001&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500002&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en <![CDATA[<b>Cannabis legal debacle</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500003&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en <![CDATA[<b>Decriminalisation of drugs</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500004&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en <![CDATA[<b>Health technology assessment in South Africa</b>: <b>future promise</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500005&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en <![CDATA[<b>Launch of the southern African human genome programme</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500006&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en <![CDATA[<b>Errata</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500007&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en <![CDATA[<b>Expert trio take on Africa's health care problems</b>: <b>one step at a time</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500008&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en <![CDATA[<b>Coming soon</b>: <b>nowhere to hide for hospital managers</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500009&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en <![CDATA[<b>Libya</b>: <b>a South African doctor's story</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500010&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en <![CDATA[<b>Abortion practices undermining reformist laws</b>: <b>experts</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500011&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en <![CDATA[<b>Haemorrhage associated with caesarean section in South Africa</b>: <b>be aware</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500012&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en <![CDATA[<b>Commentary on the need to obtain consent for vaginal delivery</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500013&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en <![CDATA[<b>Silent casualties from the measles outbreak in South Africa</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500014&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en <![CDATA[<b>Jacobus Gideon Louw Morrison</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500015&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500016&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en <![CDATA[<b>Drug administration errors</b>: <b>time for national action</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500017&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en <![CDATA[<b>Adenocarcinoma the most common cell type in patients presenting with primary lung cancer in the Western Cape</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500018&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en <![CDATA[<b>Antiretroviral prescriptions with potential drug-drug interactions from general practitioners and specialists</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500019&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en <![CDATA[<b>Errors in drug administration by anaesthetists in public hospitals in the Free State</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500020&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en OBJECTIVE: To investigate errors in administering drugs by anaesthetists working in public hospitals in the Free State province. METHODS: Anonymous questionnaires were distributed to doctors performing anaesthesia in public hospitals in the Free State, i.e. 188 doctors at 22 public sector hospitals. Outcomes included demographic information on respondents, information regarding the administration of anaesthetics, reporting of errors, and the occurrence of errors during anaesthesia. RESULTS: The response rate was 46.3%; 48.8% were medical officers, and 39.3% of participants were involved in at least one event of erroneous drug administration. Registrars and specialists reported the most errors. Most events were of no clinical significance, caused no permanent harm to patients, and most commonly involved fentanyl and suxamethonium. Of the respondents, 23.8% indicated that they were aware of a South African standard for colour-coding syringe labels, and 92.9% indicated that they would report anaesthetic errors if a single reporting agency for such events existed. CONCLUSION: More than a third of participating anaesthetists were involved in a drug error at some stage in their practice. Preventive systems and precautionary measures should be put in place to reduce drug administration errors. <![CDATA[<b>Antimicrobial resistance patterns in outpatient urinary tract infections</b>: <b>the constant need to revise prescribing habits</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500021&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en BACKGROUND: There is a global emergence of resistance against commonly prescribed antibiotics. Empirical antibiotic prescribing should be guided by local antimicrobial susceptibility patterns. AIM: To identify organisms and determine antibiotic susceptibility in urinary tract infections (UTIs) at 3 Military Hospital, Bloemfontein. METHODS: All urine samples collected during 2008 were analysed. The first positive urine culture per patient collected from the casualty, gynaecology, internal medicine and surgical outpatient departments were included. Only adult patients (>12 years old) were included. Prior use of antibiotics and underlying conditions were determined from electronic and paper-based patient and pharmacy records. RESULTS. Positive cultures (N=65) were divided into uncomplicated (N=28) and complicated (N=37) UTIs. Escherichia coli (E. coli) was the most common uropathogen in uncomplicated (75%) and complicated (59%) UTIs. In uncomplicated UTIs, trimethoprimsulfamethoxazole (TMP-SMX) (54%) and amoxicillin (46%) had the highest rates of resistance. Nitrofurantoin and ciprofloxacin had sensitivity rates of 89%. Co-amoxiclav was most commonly prescribed (36%). In complicated UTIs, TMP-SMX (68%) and amoxicillin (65%) had the highest resistance rates, followed by ciprofloxacin (41%). Nitrofurantoin had a sensitivity rate of 73%. Ciprofloxacin was prescribed most often (35%). All E. coli UTI isolates were sensitive to nitrofurantoin. CONCLUSION: E. coli remains the most common uropathogen. TMPSMX and amoxicillin are of no value in this population with UTIs. Uncomplicated UTIs can be treated effectively with nitrofurantoin; this will lead to cost savings and sparing quinolones as a class of antibiotics known to induce resistance. In this setting, ciprofloxacin should not be used empirically for complicated UTIs. <![CDATA[<b>Prevalence of methicillin-resistant <i>Staphylococcus aureus </i>nasal carriage among hospitalised patients with tuberculosis in rural KwaZulu-Natal</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500022&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en BACKGROUND: There is little information regarding the presence and characteristics of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), an important nosocomial pathogen, in rural African hospitals. OBJECTIVES: To determine the prevalence of MRSA colonisation in patients admitted to a rural hospital with tuberculosis (TB) in an endemic HIV area and to describe transmission dynamics and resistance patterns among MRSA isolates. METHODS: A prospective prevalence survey in the adult TB wards of the Church of Scotland Hospital, a provincial government district hospital in Tugela Ferry, KwaZulu-Natal. Patients were eligible if over the age of 15 and admitted to the TB wards between 15 November and 15 December 2008. Nasal swabs were cultured within 24 hours of admission and repeated at hospital-day 14 or upon discharge. Susceptibility testing was performed with standard disk diffusion. Demographic and clinical information was extracted from medical charts. RESULTS: Of 52 patients with an admission nasal swab, 11 (21%) were positive for MRSA. An additional 4 (10%) of patients with negative admission swabs were positive for MRSA on repeat testing. MRSA carriage on admission was more common among patients with previous hospitalisation, and among HIV-infected patients was significantly associated with lower CD4 counts (p=0.03). All MRSA isolates were resistant to cotrimoxazole, and 74% were resistant to >5 classes of antibiotics; all retained susceptibility to vancomycin. CONCLUSIONS: A high prevalence of multidrug-resistant MRSA nasal carriage was found. Studies are needed to validate nosocomial acquisition and to evaluate the impact of MRSA on morbidity and mortality among TB patients in similar settings. <![CDATA[<b>Prevalence of drug-resistant mutations in newly diagnosed drug-naïve HIV-1-infected individuals in a treatment site in the Waterberg district, Limpopo province</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500023&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en AIM: We studied the prevalence of resistance mutations in drugnaïve HIV-infected individuals at the Bela-Bela treatment site to gather information on the presence of antiretroviral (ARV) drug-resistant viruses in drug-naïve populations, so as to improve treatment guidance. SUBJECTS AND METHODS: Drug-naïve HIV-1-infected individuals were sequentially recruited between February 2008 and December 2008 from individuals visiting the voluntary counselling and testing (VCT) services of the Bela-Bela HIV/AIDS Wellness Clinic. Viral subtyping was done by phylogenetic analysis; drug-resistant mutations were determined according to the Stanford HIV Drug Resistance Interpretation and the International AIDS Society-USA Guidelines. RESULTS: A drug-resistant mutation prevalence of 3.5% (95% confidence interval 0.019796 - 0.119077) comprising Y181C and L33F was observed; 98% of the viruses were HIV-1 subtype C on the protease (PR) and reverse transcriptase (RT) gene regions. CONCLUSION: The prevalence of drug-resistant mutations in drugnaïve persons may be low in Bela-Bela after 8 years of access to antiretroviral treatment (ART), and resistance testing before initiating treatment may not be needed. <![CDATA[<b>A prospective study of stroke sub-type from within an incident population in Tanzania</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500024&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en OBJECTIVES: We aimed to establish the pathological types of stroke in two incident populations in Tanzania, one rural and one urban, and to examine the clinical utility of the Siriraj and Allen scores in identifying stroke sub-types. DESIGN: This prospective community-based study identified cases as part of a stroke incidence study. Each patient underwent a full assessment including recording demographic information, taking a medical and drug history, and physical examination. A computed tomography (CT) head scan was used to classify strokes as resulting from a cerebral haemorrhage or ischaemia. The results were compared with the Siriraj and Allen scores, obtained from clinical findings. RESULTS: One hundred and thirty-two incident stroke cases were identified in the rural Hai demographic surveillance site (DSS) and 69 in the urban Dar-es-Salaam DSS; 63 patients with stroke due to ischaemia or cerebral haemorrhage from Hai and 17 from Dares- Salaam had a CT scan within 15 days of the stroke. Stroke was identified as due to ischaemia in 52 cases (82.5%) and to cerebral haemorrhage in 11 (17.5%) in Hai, and as due to ischaemia in 14 cases (82.4%) and to cerebral haemorrhage in 3 (17.6%) in Dar-es- Salaam. In both sites Siriraj and Allen scores were found to be of little value in predicting stroke sub-type. CONCLUSIONS: The ratio of ischaemic to haemorrhagic stroke is much higher in our cohort than previously reported in sub-Saharan Africa, and is closer to that in high-income countries. <![CDATA[<b>Stroke outcomes in a socio-economically disadvantaged urban community</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0256-95742011000500025&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en AIMS: To determine survival, disability and functional outcomes of stroke patients following their discharge from an acute stroke unit in an urban community with limited rehabilitative resources. METHODS: Stroke patients were recruited from a district hospital in Cape Town and followed-up for 6 months. Clinical characteristics, demographic and socioeconomic data, and disability and function as measured by modified Rankin Score (mRS), modified Barthel Index (mBI) at recruitment and 3 follow-up visits, were recorded. RESULTS: The study included 196 patients. Median age was 60 (IQR 51 - 69) years, 135 (68.9%) were female, 57.7% black, 42.3% coloured, and 45 (23%) died within 6 months. At discharge, median mBI score was 7 (IQR 3 - 12) and median mRS 4 (IQR 3 - 5). In the multivariate regression models, only function (mBI OR 0.88, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.79 - 0.96, p<0.0001) and disability (mRS 0R 2.34, 95%CI 1.20 - 4.54, p<0.0001) were independently associated with risk of death. Shack housing was independently associated with moderate or severe disability (odds ratio 3.42, 95%CI 1.22 - 9.59, p=0.02). Despite limited rehabilitation resources, 67% of survivors had mild to moderate disability at 6 months. CONCLUSION: Apart from initial stroke severity, risk factors for poor survival were a severe disability category and the presence of impaired swallowing at discharge. Shack housing was independently associated with poor functional outcomes. These findings should be helpful in allocating home-based care and inpatient rehabilitation resources to high-risk groups to improve outcomes.