The 2009 American Academy of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery Foundation Annual Meeting and OTO EXPO took place Oct. 4 to 7 in San Diego and attracted approximately 9,000 registrants, including otolaryngologists, researchers, and other health care professionals. This annual meeting is the world's largest gathering of ear, nose, and throat doctors in the world, bringing together specialists from North and South America, Europe, Asia, Africa and Australia. This year's meeting featured over 250 scientific research sessions, 300 posters, and several hundred course hours available for instruction. Presentations included research and clinical advances lectures delivered by internationally recognized otolaryngology specialists, covering topics including hearing loss, sleep disorders, allergies, ear infections, voice disorders, sinusitis, head and neck cancer, and pediatric ear, nose and throat issues.
Rakesh Chandra, M.D., of Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago reported findings from a study of the electronic records of 1,970,695 patients showing an increased frequency of chronic rhinosinusitis in patients with other chronic diseases. The prevalence of chronic rhinosinusitis was higher among patients who had other chronic diseases compared with the overall patient population (8.8 versus less than 1 percent). The researchers further stratified patients by the type of comorbid disease they experienced and found that the presence of chronic rhinosinusitis was highest in those with allergic rhinitis (20 percent) and asthma (18 percent). Patients diagnosed with both chronic rhinosinusitis and asthma were 3.5-fold more likely to also experience a nasal polyp phenotype, while patients diagnosed with chronic rhinosinusitis and hypertension or osteoarthritis were significantly less likely to have a nasal polyp phenotype (nine-fold and 10.3-fold, respectively). Overall, the prevalence of chronic rhinosinusitis without nasal polyps was approximately six-fold higher than chronic rhinosinusitis with nasal polyps.
According to a statement from the American Academy of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery, "the results of the study suggest that some of these chronic diseases may share common mechanisms of how they arise or progress."
The author reported financial relationships with the pharmaceutical industry.
Nora Siupsinskiene, M.D., of the Kaunas Medical University Hospital in Lithuania presented research showing that many patients with obstructive sleep apnea also suffer from additional conditions affecting the gastrointestinal tract, including gastric reflux and hiatal hernia. A total of 42 adult patients diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea that had been verified with an overnight polysomnography were included. Obstructive sleep apnea was diagnosed as mild (47.6 percent), moderate (14.3 percent), or severe (38.1 percent). Patients were additionally analyzed with an upper gastrointestinal endoscopy to determine their gastrointestinal health. A large majority of these patients (83.3 percent) were found to have pathologic gastrointestinal findings, and many of these patients (59.5 percent) experienced two or more conditions. The most frequently observed gastrointestinal disorder reported was hiatal hernia (64.3 percent), followed by erosive esophagitis (45.2 percent), histological esophagitis (21.4 percent), erosive gastritis (21.4 percent), duodenal ulcer (7.1 percent), and biliary reflux (4.8 percent). There was no significant association between the likelihood of experiencing a gastrointestinal condition and the severity of obstructive sleep apnea. These findings prompted Siupsinskiene to recommend patients with obstructive sleep apnea also be referred to a gastroenterologist.
Jahangir Ahmed of Charing Cross Hospital in London presented a study which suggested that some patients who undergo rhinoplasty may also benefit from chin augmentation. However, cosmetic procedures are prohibited in the National Healthcare System of the United Kingdom, and thus chin augmentation may be neglected in some patients. Digital preoperative photographs of 98 sequential patients (58 of whom were male) who had undergone rhinoplasty at a single institution were assessed blindly by specialists using four commonly advocated methods (Silver, Legan, Merriford, and Gonzales-Ulloa). Depending on the method used, between 17 and 62 percent of males and 39 and 81 percent of females fulfilled criteria for chin augmentation. A positive score using three or more criteria were recorded for 21 percent of males and 58 percent of females.
According to a statement from the American Academy of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery, "in cases where surgical modifications are made, the authors believe the surgeon has the responsibility to inform their patients of the impact the procedure will have on their overall look prior to the surgery."
Anthony Bared, M.D., a private practitioner in Coral Gables, Fla., reported findings from a genetic study of 134 adults (mean age, 56 to 59 years), of whom 55 were diagnosed with age-related hearing loss and 79 were healthy controls. The genotypes of several genes from each individual were determined using a variety of techniques, including restriction fragment-length polymorphism, allele-specific amplification, direct sequencing, and polymerase chain reaction. Genes examined included NAT2, GSTM1 and GSTT1, each of which code for an enzyme with antioxidant and metabolic properties. Although no significant association was found for NAT2, gene polymorphisms in both GSTM1 and GSTT1 were statistically associated with age-related hearing loss. Patients with a polymorphism of GSTT1 were nearly three-times more likely to have age-related hearing loss (overall risk of 2.88).
A statement from the American Academy of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery noted that "antioxidant enzymes and their deficiencies have also been implicated as contributors to diseases such as cancer and cardiovascular disease."
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