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Concept: Physical examination


A 63-year-old man presented with a 6-month history of fatigue, weight loss, and gingival bleeding. Physical examination suggested the presence of a massively enlarged spleen, a finding confirmed on a reconstructed coronal CT image of the abdomen.

Concepts: Cancer, Blood, Leukemia, Spleen, Chronic myelogenous leukemia, Physical examination, Splenomegaly, Hairy cell leukemia


The present study tested the hypothesis that recall of receiving physical activity (PA) advice would be associated with higher levels of PA in patients with a diagnosis of colorectal cancer (CRC).

Concepts: Present, Time, Cancer, Colorectal cancer, Physical examination


Personally controlled health management systems (PCHMS), which include a personal health record (PHR), health management tools, and consumer resources, represent the next stage in consumer eHealth systems. It is still unclear, however, what features contribute to an engaging and efficacious PCHMS.

Concepts: Psychology, Physical examination, Control, Electronic health record, Medical informatics, Personal health record, Personal, Health management system



Although surgical treatment of nail conditions can be traced back centuries to the writings of Paul Aegineta (625-690 AC), little is known about the physical laws governing nail growth. Such a poor understanding together with the increasing number of nail salons in the high street should raise legitimate concerns regarding the different procedures applied to nails. An understanding of the physics of nail growth is therefore essential to engage with human medicine and to understand the aetiology of nail conditions. In this context, a theory of nail plate adhesion, including a physical description of nail growth can be used to determine the transverse and longitudinal curvatures of the nail plate that are so important in the physical diagnosis of some nail conditions. As a result physics sheds light on: (a) why/how nails/hooves adhere strongly, yet grow smoothly; (b) why hoof/claw/nail growth rates are similar across species; © potential nail damage incurred by poor trimming; (d) the connection between three previously unrelated nail conditions, i.e. spoon-shaped, pincer and ingrown nails and; last but not least, (e) why ingrown nails occur preferentially in the big toes.

Concepts: Medicine, Understanding, Science, Medical diagnosis, Philosophy of science, Knowledge, Physical examination, Nail disease


OBJECTIVE: Our objective was to estimate and compare the prevalence of fibromyalgia by two different methods, in Olmsted County, Minnesota. METHODS: The first method was a retrospective review of medical records of potential cases of fibromyalgia in Olmsted County using Rochester Epidemiology Project (from January 1, 2005, to December 31, 2009) to estimate the prevalence of diagnosed fibromyalgia in clinical practice. The second method was a random survey of adults in Olmsted County using the fibromyalgia research survey criteria to estimate the percentage of responders who met fibromyalgia research survey criteria. RESULTS: Of the 3,410 potential patients identified by the first method, 1,115 had a fibromyalgia diagnosis documented in the medical record by a health care provider. The age- and sex-adjusted prevalence of diagnosed fibromyalgia by this method was 1.1%. By the second method, of the 2,994 people who received the survey by mail, 830 (27.6%) responded and 44 (5.3%) met fibromyalgia research survey criteria. The age- and sex-adjusted prevalence of fibromyalgia in the general population of Olmsted County by this method was estimated at 6.4%. CONCLUSION: To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report of the rate at which fibromyalgia is being diagnosed in a community. This is also the first report of prevalence as assessed by the fibromyalgia research survey criteria. Our results suggest that patients, particularly men, who meet the fibromyalgia research survey criteria are unlikely to have been given a diagnosis of fibromyalgia. © 2012 by the American College of Rheumatology.

Concepts: Health care, Health care provider, Medicine, Statistics, Physical examination, Medical history, Rochester, Minnesota, Olmsted County, Minnesota


BACKGROUND: There are several methods that may be used to confirm the status of rib cartilage, such as physical examinations or chest radiography, for subjects with microtia. However, these methods are limited because of clinicians' inability to gain accurate information about the rib cartilage. We performed 3-dimensional chest computed tomography to preoperatively evaluate the accuracy of rib cartilage imaging. METHODS: A total of 37 patients preparing for auricular reconstruction using a rib cartilage graft underwent preoperative 3-dimensional rib cage computed tomography (3-D rib CT). The 3-D rib CT was performed in cases of secondary revisional reconstruction, those with a history of surgery using rib cartilage, in those with a history of trauma related to the rib cage, older patients with question of calcification of rib cartilage, or those with a suspected rib cartilage anomaly on physical examination. Preoperatively, the appropriateness of using the rib cartilage were evaluated. RESULTS: With the aid of the 3-D rib CT, successful autogenous auricular reconstruction was achieved in 36 patients. Framework fabrication in combination with a porous polyethylene implant and autogenous rib cartilage was performed in the remaining patient as planned preoperatively. By analyzing the 3-D rib CT image preoperatively, auricular reconstruction using a recycled rib cartilage graft with newly harvested rib cartilage was performed successfully in 13 of 14 secondary revisional cases. Based on preoperative CT images, modified surgical planning in terms of cartilage harvest and framework fabrication was needed in 8 of 11 patients who had a history of operation using rib cartilage and in 3 of 5 subjects with suspected rib cage anomalies on physical examination. Successful reconstruction was achieved using the modified surgical plan. CONCLUSIONS: A preoperative 3-D rib CT helps in surgical planning for autogenous auricular reconstruction for microtia, especially in patients with suspicious rib cartilage status.

Concepts: Hospital, Surgery, Medical imaging, Radiography, Tomographic reconstruction, Tomography, Physical examination, Human rib cage


SUMMARY:: Acute compartment syndrome (ACS) after trauma is often the result of increased size of the damaged tissues after acute crush injury or from reperfusion of ischemic areas. It usually is not solely caused by accumulation of free blood or fluid in the compartment, although that can contribute in some cases. There is no reliable and reproducible test that confirms the diagnosis of ACS. A missed diagnosis or failure to cut the fascia to release pressure within a few hours can result in severe intractable pain, paralysis, and sensory deficits. Reduced blood circulation leads to oxygen and nutrient deprivation, muscle necrosis, and permanent disability. Currently, the diagnosis of ACS is made on the basis of physical examination and repeated needle sticks over a short time frame to measure intracompartmental pressures. Missed compartment syndromes continue to be one of most common causes of malpractice lawsuits. Existing technology for continuous pressure measurements are insensitive, particularly in the deep tissues and compartments, and their use is restricted to highly trained personnel. Newer concepts of the pathophysiology accompanied by new diagnostic and therapeutic modalities have recently been advanced. Among these are the concept of inflammatory mediators as markers and anti-inflammatories as medical adjunct therapy. New diagnostic modalities include near-infrared spectroscopy, ultrafiltration catheters, and radio-frequency identification implants. These all address current shortcomings in the diagnostic armamentarium that trauma surgeons can use. The strengths and weaknesses of these new concepts are discussed to allow the trauma surgeon to follow current evolution of the field.

Concepts: Inflammation, Causality, The Canon of Medicine, Surgery, Syndromes, Necrosis, Physical examination, Compartment syndrome


Background: Concha bullosa is the pneumatisation of intranasal conchae (usually the middle turbinate, and rarely the inferior or superior turbinate); however, the term is generally used to describe aeration of the middle concha. Superior concha bullosa is a rare finding, and only a few cases of inferior concha bullosa have been reported in the medical literature. When symptomatic, concha bullosa may cause various problems including nasal congestion, headache, postnasal drip, anosmia and, sometimes, epiphora. Methodology: Computed tomography, following history-taking and physical examination, is a valuable tool in diagnosing turbinate pneumatisation. This article presents a very rare case with bilateral triple conchae pneumatisations. Results: The symptomatology, diagnosis and treatment options for cases of multiple concha bullosa are discussed. The surgical interventions performed in the presented case are briefly described. Conclusion: The presented patient had pneumatisation of all six turbinates. In such cases, we propose that this condition be termed ‘conchae bullosis’ rather than ‘conchae bullosa’, in a similar fashion to the use of nasal polyposis as the plural form of nasal polyp.

Concepts: Sinusitis, Medical imaging, English language, Case, Physical examination, Medical history, Concha bullosa, Grammatical number


OBJECTIVE: To describe the clinical signs, treatment, and outcomes of dogs and cats following envenomation by the eastern coral snake and to report our clinical experience with the use of Coralmyn. DESIGN: Retrospective study (1996-2011). SETTING: University teaching hospital. ANIMALS: Sixteen dogs and 4 cats with eastern coral snake envenomation. MEASUREMENTS AND MAIN RESULTS: Medical records meeting the study inclusion criteria were reviewed and evaluated for signalment, date and time of the snake encounter, elapsed time between encounter and hospital examination, initial physical examination findings, antivenom type, length of hospitalization, and outcome. Initial physical examination findings included: quiet mentation, tetraparesis, ptyalism, tachypnea, abdominal breathing, shallow breathing, decreased to absent gag reflex, ataxia, muscle fasciculations, and decreased spinal reflexes. Laboratory findings in dogs included proteinuria, bilirubinuria, hemeproteinuria, increased aspartate aminotransferase activity, increased alanine aminotransferase activity, and hemolysis. Four dogs and 2 cats received Coralmyn and 4 dogs received North American Coral Snake Antivenom. Adverse reaction to antivenom was suspected in 1 dog that received North American Coral Snake Antivenom. Eight of 11 envenomated dogs survived with a median length of hospitalization of 4.5 days. Two of 3 envenomated cats survived with a median length of hospitalization of 4 days. Two dogs were euthanized, 1 dog suffered acute respiratory arrest, and 1 cat developed tachycardia that progressed to pulseless electrical activity. Five dogs and 1 cat in the encounter group survived to discharge. CONCLUSIONS: Diagnosis of eastern coral snake envenomation is likely in the dog that has concomitant lower motor neuron neuropathy, bulbar palsy, and hemolysis. Early diagnosis is crucial as antivenom administration can reduce morbidity. Prognosis is considered good with 71% of the envenomated patients in this study surviving to discharge. Supportive care that may include ventilator assistance and antivenom administration are the mainstays of therapy.

Concepts: Hospital, Aspartate transaminase, Alanine transaminase, Medical diagnosis, Physical examination, Antivenom, Coral snake, Micrurus fulvius