risk of heart disease hear attack stroke read more real stories and note the important facts

By Live Dr - Mon Dec 08, 12:49 pm

Niacin may lower the risk of heart disease

“Researchers may have discovered the mechanism by which the vitamin known as niacin or B-3 raises the body’s levels of HDL cholesterol, thus decreasing the risk of cardiovascular disease. ‘Although niacin has been commonly used to increase plasma HDL levels, the mechanism(s) by which niacin exerts its action is not clearly understood,’ the researchers wrote in the Journal of Lipid Research – Natural News Network

Green spaces ‘reduce health gap’

“A bit of greenery near our homes can cut the ‘health gap’ between rich and poor, say researchers from two Scottish universities. Even small parks in the heart of our cities can protect us from strokes and heart disease, perhaps by cutting stress or boosting exercise. Their study, in The Lancet, matched data about hundreds of thousands of deaths to green spaces in local areas. Councils should introduce more greenery to improve wellbeing, they said” – BBC

Philips announces 2008 winner of American Heart Association-Philips Resuscitation Fellowship Award

“Royal Philips Electronics has announced that Dr. Ohad Ziv, Clinical Cardiac Electrophysiologist at Rhode Island Hospital, has been selected as the recipient of the second annual American Heart Association-Philips Resuscitation Fellowship Award. Funded by a grant from Philips Healthcare, the Fellowship encourages young investigators in the early stages of their careers to advance the resuscitation field through basic and clinical research. The American Heart Association selected Dr. Ziv based on the merits of his research proposal and its applicability to the field of resuscitation. The award, which provides a $100,000 grant over a two-year period, will enable Dr. Ziv to pursue research on the influence of underlying heart disease and genetic background on the characteristics and mechanisms of ventricular fibrillation” – Philips

Irate passenger explodes in Tube station

“An irate tube passenger hit out at a policeman after becoming frustrated at delays caused by sick commuter. Ambulances rushed to Archway Underground station after a man suffered a heart attack while travelling home during rush hour. At around 6.30pm the victim was given emergency first aid on the tube which caused all north bound services to be delayed. But one man seemed to have little sympathy for his fellow passenger. ‘He just went mad,’ said a member of staff at Archway station. ‘He was shouting and hurling abuse at police and staff, saying he had paid his money and the service was terrible, all the while another poor guy is having a heart attack. Then I think he hit one of the officers and they ended up leading him out in handcuffs.’ The sick passenger was then rushed to hospital. Officers returned to the station to examine the CCTV tapes of the incident. A spokesman for British Transport Police said: ‘A 61-year-old man was arrested for a public order offence and assaulting a police officer at Archway Tube station, Wednesday 5 November. ‘The arrested man was taken into custody for further questioning and bailed to return to a central London police station on Monday 15 December.’ – Archant Regional

Sticky Blood: Do You Have It?

“While many people might know their cholesterol number, most don’t know how sticky their blood is, and Dr. Paul Gurbel, cardiologist and director of the Sinai Center for Thrombosis Research said it’s even more important in assessing your risk for a heart attack. According to Gurbel, sticky blood is platelet aggregation. ‘The platelets stick to one another – to the vessel wall – and form a plug that obstructs the blood flow to the artery in the heart,’ he said

– WBALtv

Therapy helps some kick habit after heart attack

“Cognitive behavioral therapy appears to help people who are depressed after suffering a heart attack to avoid smoking cigarettes, but only if they believe they have adequate social support, new research shows. The findings suggest that most smokers will need more than CBT alone to give up the habit after a heart attack, but they also underscore the value of this therapy in treating depression in people with heart disease, Dr. Mickey Trockel of the Stanford University School of Medicine and colleagues report. After a heart attack, smokers can substantially reduce their risk of dying if they quit, the researchers note in their study, published in the journal Psychosomatic Medicine. But people with heart disease frequently suffer from depression, which can make kicking the habit more difficult” – Reuters

Guidelines for adult congenital heart disease

“These days most children born with congenital heart disease live well into adulthood, thanks to innovative surgical, interventional and medical treatments. That means that not only are cardiologists caring for a growing number of adults with repaired heart defects, but the resulting cardiac anatomy and physiology are often much more complex than in the past. To assist cardiologists in making everyday clinical decisions for this challenging group of patients – and in knowing when to refer patients to specialists with expertise in congenital heart disease – the American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Association have jointly released a comprehensive set of practice guidelines on the management of adults with congenital heart disease. The guidelines – the first of their kind in the United States – appear in the December 2, 2008, issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology and the December 2, 2008, issue of Circulation

Friday, November 7, 2008

Smoking coupled with obesity raises death risk

“Everyone knows smoking and being obese is not healthy for you, but now a new study shows the odds of dying early are highest among obese smokers. ‘We know that obesity and smoking by themselves are important health risk factors,’ said lead researcher Annemarie Koster, an epidemiologist at the U.S. National Institute on Aging. ‘We found that smoking and obesity are independent predictors of mortality, but smoking and being obese especially increases the mortality risk.’ Smoking and obesity both carry a significant mortality risk, but particularly smoking, Koster said. ‘It seems that smoking cessation was associated with significantly lower mortality risk in every weight group,’ she said. ‘Quitting smoking will definitely improve your mortality risk, no matter in what weight group you are.’ The report was published in the November issue of The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition

Banned obesity drug tied to heart risks long after use

“One of the ‘fen/phen’ drugs once widely prescribed to help fight obesity has been tied to heart valve damage that develops years after a person has stopped taking it, a new study reports. The appetite suppressant fenfluramine has been banned in the United States since 1997, because of its links to heart damage. Thousands of lawsuits have been filed against the drug’s manufacturers over alleged damage it caused. In the new study, published November 5 in the journal BMC Medicine, researchers looked at 5,743 people who had stopped using fenfluramine more than a decade earlier but had damaged heart valves up to seven years later” – MyHeartCentral.com

Cardiac death still big risk

“Sudden cardiac death after a heart attack dropped in the past 30 years, but there’s higher risk in the first month after a heart attack, U.S. researchers said. Dr. A. Selcuk Adabag of Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Minneapolis and colleagues at Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn., studied 2,997 residents – average age 67, 59 percent men – who had a heart attack in Olmsted County, Minn., from 1979 to 2005. Patients were tracked for about 4.7 years. During the study period, 1,160 patients died, 24 percent from sudden cardiac death. The 30-day cumulative incidence of sudden cardiac death was 1.2 percent – four times higher than expected” – WKMQ

Emergency physicians reveal strategies for improving sudden Cardiac arrest survival rates in the U.S.

“A new State of Resuscitation survey released by the American College of Emergency Physicians finds an overwhelming majority (90 percent) of the emergency physicians surveyed believe that resuscitation practices in the United States are not very effective. Emergency physicians cite increased bystander CPR, faster patient-to-doctor time, improved data collection and sharing, and greater use of technology as critical to improving resuscitation for victims of sudden cardiac arrest” – PR Newswire

Thursday, November 6, 2008

‘Patient First’ review launched in Saskatchewan

“The former head of Saskatoon’s Royal University Hospital, Tony Dagnone, has been appointed as the commissioner to lead the much-anticipated Patient First independent review. The review will have two parts. The first part of the review will focus on issues and challenges in the health care system from the perspective of patients, their family members, and advocates, based on their experiences with the system. Front-line health care providers will be asked to provide advice and insight on possible recommendations for change, to directly address the issues and concerns raised by patients and their families. ‘We’ve done other health system reviews in Saskatchewan, but have never looked at the care through the patients’ eyes,’ Health Minister Don McMorris said. ‘In fact, no other province in Canada had undertaken such a system-wide review. Yet, patient- and family-centred approaches to health care are driving improvements in quality, efficiency, health outcomes and patient satisfaction in the most progressive health care facilities in the world.’ The second part of the independent review will examine administration in health care and identify efficiencies, constraints and opportunities for improvement in the regional health authorities, their affiliates and the Saskatchewan Association of Health Organizations. Areas of specific examination will be general administration (executive offices, board costs, planning and development), finance, human resources, system support (including information technology) and communications. ‘I want assurance that the system is being appropriately administered and that health care time and dollars are being properly directed toward front-line care for patients and quality work environments for health care professionals,’ McMorris said of the $1.5 million independent review. Dagnone will work with independent consulting firm KPMG to assist with consultations, analyzing results and drafting recommendations for the patient experience review. He will work with Deloitte Inc. on the administrative review. Details on opportunities to participate in the consultation process will be announced in the coming weeks. Dagnone plans to present the minister with his report by mid-2009. ‘I am passionate about timely access, health care innovation, efficiency and patient satisfaction, and hope that I can contribute to the advancement of health care in my former home province,’ Dagnone said, whose awards include the Order of Canada for community work and leadership in health care, the Queen’s Jubilee Medal and the Canadian College of Health Services Executives Chairman’s Award for Distinguished Service. – Saskatchewan Health

Fish oil and red yeast rice: natural alternatives to statins?

“Has your doctor prescribed statins to lower your cholesterol? Would you rather not take them because you are worried about their side effects? If so, there may be an alternative. After three months of following 74 patients with high blood cholesterol who were randomly assigned to either an alternative treatment group, which took red yeast rice and fish oil daily, or a statin group, which took Zocor (simvastatin) daily, researchers saw a reduction in LDL cholesterol levels (the bad kind) in both groups. However, while the reductions were similar – 42.4% for the alternative treatment group versus 39.6% for the statin group – the alternative therapy group also had a substantial reduction in triglycerides and lost more weight. (Becker, DJ, et al. Mayo Clin Proc. 83(7):758-764, 2008.) ‘These results are intriguing and show a potential benefit of an alternative, or naturopathic, approach to a common medical condition,’ notes the study’s lead author, David Becker, M.D., a Chestnut Hill Hospital and University of Pennsylvania Health System cardiologist in a prepared statement”

Clinical guideline on prevention of cardiovascular disease and diabetes in patients at highest risk released

“The Endocrine Society has released a new clinical practice guideline for the primary prevention of cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes in patients at metabolic risk. The guideline appears in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, a publication of The Endocrine Society. There is growing evidence that many patients who develop cardiovascular disease or diabetes have a pre-existing metabolic risk. This risk includes conditions such as enlarged waist circumference, hypertension, and elevated plasma glucose levels. The presence of three of more such conditions should alert a clinician to a patient at metabolic risk, said Dr. James Rosenzweig, director of diabetes services in the Section of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Nutrition at Boston Medical Center, and chair of the task force that developed this guideline” – newswise

Get Up! Get Out! Get Moving! Exercise Now!

The Get Up! Get Out! Get Moving! Exercise Now! Facebook application is part of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons’ current public service campaign to encourage bone strengthening exercise for all ages. It enables users to:

– Set fitness goals (promoting weight-bearing exercises)
– Track those goals
– Join teams that can also set and track fitness goals
– Challenge friends and teammates on Facebook to meet and/or beat goals
– Compete with people around the globe to earn points and work your way to the top of the leaderboard

Exercise, calcium-rich diet could cut risk of metabolic syndrome

“Adopting daily exercise sessions and a calcium-rich diet could reduce the risk of a group of health risk factors called the metabolic syndrome, finds a new study of Illinois adults. Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of symptoms – large abdominal girth, high blood pressure, high cholesterol levels and insulin insensitivity – that together signal a significantly higher risk for heart disease and type 2 diabetes. ‘As with many health conditions, when the good behaviors are absent, the condition is more prevalent,’ said Adam Reppert, lead study author. Reppert is a clinical dietitian at Swedish Covenant Hospital in Chicago. The study appears in the November/December issue of the American Journal of Health Promotion. In a 2005 telephone survey, 5,077 Illinois adults provided information about chronic health conditions, exercise habits and their intake of fruit, vegetables and other sources of calcium. Researchers then identified respondents with the condition” – newswise

Screening for Diabetes

The American Diabetes Association recommends people at risk for the disease get screened. Watch the video

Cholesterol patients look to lifestyle, diet changes instead of drugs

“In a single morning recently, Phoenix, Arizona, cardiologist Edward Diethrich saw four patients who wanted to talk about alternatives to cholesterol-lowering statin drugs. With more than 13 million Americans taking statins, at times with troubling side effects, such conversations are becoming increasingly common. High cholesterol is a key risk factor for heart attack and stroke, and efforts to lower blood levels of the fatty substance have turned statins such as Lipitor and Zocor into the top-selling class of prescription drugs in the United States. ‘There’s rising interest in being able to accomplish the same goals without statins,’ says Diethrich, founder of the Arizona Heart Institute. ‘Everybody’s asking about this'” – Binghamton Press

Nancy Brown named CEO of the American Heart Association


Track your blood pressure, cholesterol, glucose and other heart disease risk factors at Heart360.org, the American Heart Association’s free, password-protected online cardiovascular wellness center

Heart pills put teens in hospital

“A 16-year-old Claymont, Delaware, boy was arrested on drug and assault charges Tuesday after selling two classmates at Mount Pleasant High School a powerful heart medicine, New Castle County police said. Believing they had purchased the narcotic Percocet, the two victims each swallowed several of the pills and suffered serious medical complications. The suspect found a bottle of the heart medicine Rythmol in his grandmother’s home. The medicine had been prescribed for his grandfather, who is now deceased, police said.” – DelawareOnline

UPMC St. Margaret closing Harmar cardiac program

“University of Pittsburgh Medical Center St. Margaret will close its cardiac and pulmonary rehab services at the UPMC St. Margaret Wellness Center in Harmar effective January 5. In a news release, UPMC said the decision was made to concentrate on its core services and programs. It also cited costs and medical insurance as factors. Patients currently enrolled in the cardiac and pulmonary rehab services will be able to continue with the program through January 5. Effective immediately, all new patients inquiring about cardiac and pulmonary rehab services will be given referral information to either UPMC Passavant or UPMC Shadyside programs”

Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation Awards Dinner

The Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation presents its annual celebration to honour SHRF’s 2008-09 grant and award recipients and to recognize research excellence in Saskatchewan. The winners of our Achievement Award and Top Researcher Awards will be announced. Thursday, December 4th, 2008, Delta Bessborough Hotel, Saskatoon
5:30 p.m. – Poster viewing and cocktails
7:00 p.m. – Dinner
$30.00 per ticket

Health Research Week in Saskatchewan

From Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation: “November 30 to December 6 is Health Research Week in Saskatchewan! We encourage our partners in health research to hold events or other initiatives of their own. If your organization is presenting a health research related event during the Week, send details to info@shrf.ca and we’ll help you get the word out”

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

SWHR asks young women to be aware of smoking dangers in face of new cigarette marketing tactics

Society for Women’s Health Research President and CEO Phyllis Greenberger, M.S.W., issued the following statement in response to the decision of Philip Morris USA to introduce pink ‘Purse Packs’ for some Virginia Slims cigarette brands by early 2009.

“The Society for Women’s Health Research is appalled that a tobacco company, with all the health information now available, would initiate a marketing campaign that is directed at young women. The use of smaller, sleek pink boxes is clearly designed to recruit a new generation of young women smokers. This is a reprehensible marketing practice. Young women need to know that smoking more negatively affects their health than the health of their male counterparts. Smoking increases the risk of infertility and the chance of developing cervical cancer. Smoking also puts women at dramatically greater risk for other cancers and heart and lung diseases. Additionally, women are less successful quitting smoking and have more severe withdrawal symptoms than men. The message to women of all ages: If you are not a smoker, for your immediate and long-term health, do not begin. And, if you do smoke, stop. If you can not quit on your own, seek help from medical professionals or social support groups”

Phyllis Greenberger, M.S.W.
President and CEO
Society for Women’s Health Research
Washington, D.C. USA

Pregnancy disorder signals need to screen for heart disease

“High blood pressure experienced during pregnancy could be a woman’s earliest warning that she is at risk of developing heart disease – the number one killer of Canadian women – says Queen’s University professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Graeme Smith. Called pre-eclampsia, this type of high blood pressure occurs in 5-10 per cent of all pregnancies. But because most practicing physicians are unaware of the connection between pre-eclampsia and the risk for future cardiovascular problems, they fail to follow up with screening tests. As a result, their patients aren’t taking proactive steps to avoid potential heart attacks and strokes. According to the 2007 Heart and Stroke Foundation Annual Report on Canadians’ Health, Canadian women have now caught up to men in cardiovascular deaths, with almost 37,000 deaths annually from heart disease and stroke”

Help the BHF ban the sale of cigarettes from vending machines

“It’s illegal to sell cigarettes to children…but did you know that across England and Wales 46,000 11-15 year olds regularly buy them? That’s because one in six children who smoke buy their cigarettes from cigarette vending machines. We want to reduce the number of young people who are putting their health at risk. To help do this, we want to see an immediate ban on the sale of cigarettes from vending machines” – British Heart Foundation

Take a look at the sunny side of egg yolk

“It may be time to rethink the egg-white omelet. Popular on breakfast menus with dieters and cholesterol watchers, they’re often prepared with chopped spinach and tomatoes and arrive with whole-grain toast. By forgoing the traditional three-egg western omelet stuffed with ham and cheese, you’re definitely choosing a breakfast lower in total calories, fat and cholesterol when you go with the egg-whites-and-veggies-only choice. But that doesn’t mean saying no to yolks is always the healthiest thing to do, because when you throw out the yolk you’re missing out on some pretty powerful nutrients. While the white of a large egg is virtually fat-free and a bit higher in protein than the yolk (3.6 grams compared to 2.7 grams protein), the yellow center is where nutrients, including vitamins, minerals and other compounds, are stored” – Cox

Royal Alex plans ‘amazing’ heart centre

“A new heart centre planned at the Royal Alexandra Hospital, Edmonton, Canada, will expand the research and treatment hub that already serves more than 50,000 patients each year, helping many avoid having their chests cracked wide for open-heart surgery. With the launch of an $8-million fundraising campaign by the hospital’s foundation, two new catheter labs with advanced technology will allow doctors to reach more blocked arteries with narrow tubes slipped into tiny holes in the wrist or groin” – Edmonton Journal

TheLancet.com has relaunched

“The Lancet has announced the relaunch of its online medical journals. Owned by Elsevier, TheLancet.com is the company’s latest solution for delivering flagship medical journal content in daily, contextualised updates for the clinical community”

Sudden death risk highest 30 days after heart attack

“The risk of sudden death after a heart attack has improved significantly over the past three decades, but the first 30 days remain a period of great danger, an historical study shows. The study looked at the experiences of almost 3,000 residents of Olmsted County in Minnesota who had heart attacks between 1979 and 2005.” – HealthDay

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

November is CPR month in Canada

“70% of cardiac arrests happen in the home. Would you know what to do? Shortness of breath, pain, nausea, sweating and fear are all signs and symptoms of cardiac arrest. Taking immediate action can save a life. If your child, spouse, parent or neighbour’s heart stopped beating, would you know what to do? In Canada the average paramedic response time is eight to twelve minutes, but permanent brain damage is likely to occur within four to six minutes after breathing stops. Performing immediate CPR doubles their survival rate. Doubles. November is CPR month. If you have never been trained in first aid or CPR, now is the time to learn how to save a life. Learning CPR is simple. Take a cost-effective four hour course. If you previously received CPR training, take a refresher course and learn how recent research has made it even easier to learn, remember and perform CPR” – Canadian Red Cross

Physical Activity and Health: Finding the Right Prescription

“We all know physical activity is good for you. But why exactly is it good for you? What effect does exercise have on the cells and tissues of the body? What do we need to know so that we can use physical activity more effectively to combat chronic diseases such as arthritis, diabetes and heart disease? And what social and psychological factors prevent people from exercising or playing sports? These are just some of the questions that the Canadian Institute of Health Research’s Institute of Musculoskeletal and Arthritis will tackle over the next five years through its strategic plan unveiled today at the University of Saskatchewan. ‘As Canada’s population ages and grows, the burden of arthritis, osteoporosis, and other musculoskeletal, oral and skin conditions on our health care system will increase,’ said Dr. Jane E. Aubin, IMHA’s Scientific Director. ‘We want to reduce this burden and improve the health and quality of life of Canadians of all ages by supporting research that increases our understanding of the relationship between physical activity, mobility and health.’ – University of Saskatchewan

Scientific Sessions 2008 – American Heart Association

Register Today
Listen to welcome message from Dr. Gordon F. Tomaselli, chairman of the Committee on Scientific Sessions Program.

  • Final Program – View with page-turning technology
  • Program and Itinerary Planner – Search for presentations and create your own itinerary
  • ePreview – Exhibitors and Unofficial Satellite Events
  • Snap Guide  – Download the latest program information to your handheld device
  • Convention Center Map – Find session locations
  • 2008 Distinguished Scientists -this distinction is proudly bestowed upon prominent AHA members each year

Fitting in fitness: Finding time for physical activity

“Are your days a blur of work, household chores, errands, and time with family and friends? Setting aside enough time for sleep – let alone exercise – can be tough. Yet even the busiest people can find time for fitness. The key is to make it convenient” – Mayo Clinic

Heart bypass: animation

This animation explains in detail how a coronary artery bypass, a surgical procedure, is performed and why it would be needed. From NHS Choices

Cardio & Vascular Coalition Consultation (UK)

“This is your chance to have your say on the future of cardio and vascular services in England. We’d like to know what you think about services for both prevention and treatment. Your views are important to us as we prepare our recommendations for a new Cardio & Vascular Health Strategy in England for 2010-2020. By completing our survey you really can help to make a difference. The CVC is a national coalition of 36 voluntary organisations with an interest in promoting and protecting cardio and vascular health in England. The interests of our membership cover the breadth of cardio and vascular and related conditions – heart disease, diabetes, stroke and kidney disease – from pre-birth to end of life care” – Cardio & Vascular Coalition

Genetically modified soya bean can cut heart attack risk

“A genetically modified soya bean, which can help to prevent heart attacks, has passed the first phase of trials in the United States. Researchers at the University of South Dakota say that the promising results of the experiments have cleared the way for its use in foods such as spreads, yoghurts, cereal bars, and salad dressings. The researchers said that their study had shown that oil from the GM soya could raise blood concentrations of long-chain omega3 acids, which are found chiefly in oily fish such as salmon, trout and fresh tuna” – New Kerala

Significant increased risk of heart attack and stroke triggers Zelnorm national class action

“A national class action was launched November 3 against Novartis Pharmaceuticals Canada Inc., seeking damages on behalf of all Canadians who ingested the prescription medication Zelnorm. The class action was commenced by the Toronto firms Rochon Genova LLP and Himelfarb Proszanski LLP. Zelnorm was used for the symptomatic treatment of irritable bowel syndrome and was marketed in Canada between March, 2002 and March, 2007 when sales were suspended at the request of Health Canada. The basis for this request was stated by the defendant to be the results of a retrospective analysis of pooled clinical data that reflected a significant increased incidence of cardiovascular events in persons taking Zelnorm. The claim alleges the defendant had knowledge of increased cardiovascular risk long before the market withdrawal, yet failed to inform Canadian consumers or physicians” – Earth Times

Terence Tolbert, aide to Obama & Mayor Bloomberg, dies

Terence Tolbert, a campaign operative for Barack Obama’s presidential campaign and a former aide to Mayor Bloomberg, died Sunday in Nevada of a heart attack. He was 44. Tolbert, who was born and lived in Harlem, was in Las Vegas directing Obama’s Nevada campaign. He had also been the Nevada director for Sen. John Kerry’s 2004 campaign and the Louisiana director of Al Gore’s 2000 campaign. He was on leave as director of lobbying for the city’s Education Department, and, before that, helped Bloomberg get reelected – NYDailyNews.com

Ice slurry technology can save heart attack victims, surgery patients

“When treating cardiac arrest victims, doctors can’t call a time-out. Without the ability to obtain fresh oxygen from blood pumped through the body, brain cells start to die in just minutes. Within 10 to 20 minutes after the heart stops beating, the clock has run out. Even if doctors can get the heart ticking again, the brain has died. Recently, however, researchers have begun to develop a new technique that can reduce the brain and other organs’ demand for oxygen, giving doctors precious extra time to diagnose and treat critical patients in emergencies while also protecting the heart, brain, kidneys and spinal cord in planned surgeries” – Argonne National Laboratory

Study sheds light on painkillers’ heart risk

“The increased risk of heart attack that comes with the use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) to treat arthritis pain is directly related to the specific pain-causing molecule they act against, a new study finds. ‘We found a significant correlation between the degree of inhibition in vitro [in the laboratory] of whole blood cox-2, but not whole blood cox-1,’ said the report by researchers in Spain and Italy” – HealthDay

Jane Clarke: Bloated and painful gut? Blame the junk food diet

“Every Tuesday, Britain’s leading nutritionist explains how to eat your way to health. This week Jane explains how junk food harms our digestive system and reveals the healthiest foods to snack on after a heart attack” – Mail Online

Mesa joins effort to help heart attack victims

“The Cardiac Alert program may save the lives of at least 10 to 20 Mesa, Arizona, heart attack victims a year and reduce the heart damage suffered by many others. Mesa joined the Gilbert and Apache Junction fire departments in using the protocol last month after obtaining $900,000 worth of advanced 12-lede electrocardiograms, enough to equip 37 fire trucks, through a statewide study with Zoll Medical Equipment. The devices will help firefighters determine much earlier if a patient is having a heart attack. Firefighters would then call ahead to one of four Mesa hospitals to make arrangements for a heart catheterization laboratory, where a doctor would open an artery to mitigate damage”

Monday, November 3, 2008

One man dies during NYC Marathon, 2 others suffer heart attacks

“One man died of cardiac arrest after completing the New York City Marathon on Sunday and two other runners suffered heart attacks during the Sunday race. Carlos Jose Gomes, 58, of Sao Paulo, Brazil, collapsed after crossing the finish line and was pronounced dead at a hospital. Jean-Louis Maubaret, 59, a French national, was listed in critical condition at a hospital after suffering a heart attack during the race. He was running beside his wife across the Queensboro Bridge when he collapsed. A third runner, reportedly a 41-year-old man, whose name has not been disclosed, also suffered a heart attack and was transported to a hospital” – AHN

Expert panel recommends doctors abandon Vytorin cholesterol drug

“An expert panel from the American College of Cardiology has recommended that doctors stop prescribing the cholesterol-lowering drugs Zetia and Vytorin and stick with the older, proven class of cholesterol drugs known as statins. ‘Our strongest recommendation is that people need to go back to statins,’ said Dr. Harlan Krumholz of Yale University, speaking on behalf of the panel before the college’s Chicago meeting. Among their reasons for coming to consensus that the drugs should no longer be used, the panelists cited lack of evidence that they lengthen patients’ lives and lack of knowledge about potential risks”

National Pathology Week

National Pathology Week is taking place from 3-9 November 2008. This will be the first time that a week has been set aside to promote the role of pathology in the UK. National Pathology Week aims to highlight pathology’s impact on the health of the population

Mending broken hearts with tissue engineering

“Broken hearts could one day be mended using a novel scaffold developed by MIT researchers and colleagues. The new scaffold approach could also aid the engineering of other tissues. The idea is that living heart cells or stem cells seeded onto such a scaffold would develop into a patch of cardiac tissue that could be used to treat congenital heart defects, or aid the recovery of tissue damaged by a heart attack. The biodegradable scaffold would be gradually absorbed into the body, leaving behind new tissue. The accordion-like honeycomb scaffold, reported in the November 2 online edition of Nature Materials, is the first to be explicitly designed to match the structural and mechanical properties of native heart tissue. As a result, it has several advantages over previous cardiac tissue engineering scaffolds” – ScienceDaily

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Cardiac rehabilitation newsletter – September 2008 (Birmingham, UK)

Cardiac rehabilitation newsletter – September 2008 from the University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust, UK

Morton Plant Mease heart program receives national distinction (USA), recertification

“Cardiac rehabilitation – medically supervised exercise, diet, education and support – is essential to helping patients with heart disease regain their total health and avoid future heart problems. The Morton Plant Mease Cardiac Rehabilitation Program has assisted more than 22,000 heart patients in the last 25 years and has again been honored for its quality of care by receiving recertification by the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation for the fourth consecutive time. ‘Recertification by the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation is the gold standard for a cardiac rehab program. This means we’re meeting the highest level of criteria for excellent cardiac rehabilitation care,’ said Robert Lynch, director of cardiology services, Morton Plant Mease Health Care”

A crew to help you fight heart disease

“A cardiac rehabilitation class for people in the upper Calder Valley was launched at Todmorden Sports Centre, UK. CREW, which stands for Cardiac Rehabilitation through Exercise and Walking, will be running sessions in Todmorden to help people with a history of coronary heart disease on the road to recovery. More than 50 people attended the launch event where they listened to speeches, took part in a taster session of the type of exercises offered at the classes and enjoyed refreshments. Those who attended the event also listened to presentations from members of the Upbeat team, another heart support group which provides courses of exercise and educational activities for people who have had heart problems”

Southern Maine Medical Center receives $1.4 million gift for new gym

Southern Maine Medical Center has received a US$1.4 million gift from local philanthropist Dorothy Suzi Osher for a new cardiopulmonary rehabilitation gym. The gift is the largest in the hospital’s history and was announced by President and Chief Executive Officer Ed McGeachey. The new, 3,000-square-foot gym will be named the Joseph A. and Anna Marie Petrin Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation Gym in honor of Osher’s parents. According to staff cardiologist Paul Meadows, M.D., the cardiopulmonary rehabilitation program will be important to the recovery of local heart and lung patients. ‘One hundred sixteen million Americans suffer from cardiac and lung disease. To heal they need more than medical intervention. They need to change their way of life, learn healthy eating habits and make exercise a part of their daily routine. These changes are best accomplished in a gym where patients feel secure and are constantly monitored by trained medical professionals,’ Meadows said

More blood donors needed to handle Canada-wide demand

“Canadian blood reserves are dipping to dangerous levels, say officials, and now they are scrambling to find ways to get back to a comfort zone. Ron Vezina, a spokesman for Canadian Blood Services, says some blood types are down to less than half the usual levels, despite a productive summer. ‘Summer is typically a tough time to recruit blood donors . . . but we actually did fairly well, but in September and October, we couldn’t keep up with the hospital demand,’ Vezina said. ‘If you have an imbalance of demand from the hospital and not enough supply, you dip into your reserves and you want to have four to six days of blood inventory running to sustain an interruption in service or natural disaster . . . but on some critical blood types, we’re down to two days'” – Canada.com

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Why heart pumps could kill off the transplant

“There are no rejection problems, and they cost a lot less than transplants. The new, smaller heart pumps could save thousands of lives. So why are they still treated as the poor relation?” – Times

CARG Newsletter – November 2008 edition

The November 2008 issue of the CARG Newsletter is now available

GlaxoSmithKline diabetes drug faces more criticism

“Two prominent consumer groups have warned that diabetes patients should not take GlaxoSmithKline’s drug Avandia because of dangerous side effects and the availability of equally effective treatments. Public Citizen, a consumer advocacy group, on Thursday called for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to take Avandia off the market, citing several life-threatening risks, including heart and liver damage. That followed updated treatment guidelines issued last week by the American Diabetes Association, a leading patient-advocacy group, which recommended against using Avandia. The group said it was unclear whether Avandia increased heart-attack risks, but it argued that other treatments were available. The association’s Web site says it receives funding from pharmaceutical companies, though not currently from GlaxoSmithKline. Another group, the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists, whose members treat diabetic patients, continues to support using Avandia” – Philly.com

Mortality rate after heart attack higher at St. Paul’s, Saskatoon, than others

“A recent report on the outcomes of Saskatchewan heart attack patients reveals significant differences in the patients’ likelihood of survival based on what hospital they went to. Local health officials, meanwhile, seem at a loss for an explanation. The Saskatchewan Health Quality Council’s new yearly publication, Quality Insight, compiled government data and found about 22 per cent, or slightly more than one in five Saskatchewan people who have a heart attack, will die within a year” – Star Phoenix


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