This study aimed to evaluate the occurrence of schistosomiasis in areas with low endemicity using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) as a diagnostic method. We analysed faecal samples from 219 individuals residing in Piau and Coronel Pacheco, state of Minas Gerais, Brazil, using a single faecal sample from each individual and two slides of the Kato-Katz technique as a gold standard. Fifteen out of the 219 samples were positive with both methods of diagnosis. One sample was diagnosed as positive by the Kato-Katz technique only and 61 were diagnosed only by PCR. The positivity rates were 7.3% with the Kato-Katz method and 34.7% with PCR. When both techniques were assumed to have 100% specificity and positive individuals were identified by both methods, the sensitivity of the Kato-Katz method was 20.8% and the PCR sensitivity was 98.7%. The Kappa index between the two techniques was 0.234, suggesting weak agreement. The assessment of a single faecal sample by PCR detected more cases of infection than the analysis of one sample with two slides using the Kato-Katz technique, suggesting that PCR can be a useful diagnostic tool, particularly in areas with low endemicity.
The aim of this study is to compare helical computed tomography with imaging studies currently used to evaluate patients with acute low back pain. In addition, we briefly review the pathophysiology of urolithiasis. The literature published in the last 30 years was reviewed, and the following methods were discussed: plain abdominal radiographs, intravenous pielography, ultrasound of the urinary tract, and helical computed tomography. Helical computed tomography showed high sensitivity and specificity for detecting urolithiasis, virtually showing all stones, except in patients receiving indinavir. The accuracy of plain abdominal radiographs associated with ultrasound was similar to helical computed tomography, although the latter showed superiority as an isolated method. Data from literature suggest that whenever helical computed tomography is available, it is helpful in the evaluation of low back pain and also allows differential diagnosis between conditions that mimic the symptoms of urolithiasis.
O objetivo deste trabalho foi comparar a tomografia computadorizada helicoidal com os métodos imaginológicos atualmente disponíveis para a abordagem dos pacientes com dor lombar aguda e revisar brevemente as características fisiopatológicas da urolitíase e a evolução da sua abordagem diagnóstica. Foi revista a literatura publicada nos últimos 30 anos, comparando os seguintes métodos: radiografia simples de abdome, urografia excretora, ultra-sonografia e tomografia computadorizada helicoidal. Esta última se mostrou método de alta sensibilidade e especificidade para o diagnóstico de urolitíase, sendo que, virtualmente, todos os cálculos são identificados por este método, exceto em pacientes em uso de indinavir. A radiografia simples de abdome associada à ultra-sonografia têm acurácia semelhante à tomografia computadorizada helicoidal, contudo, esta foi superior como método de avaliação isolado. A literatura sugere que a tomografia computadorizada helicoidal é útil na avaliação de pacientes com dor lombar aguda quando disponível, possibilitando também o diagnóstico diferencial entre as várias doenças que simulam os sintomas de urolitíase.