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July 12, 2006, 11:19 PM CT

Living Alone Doubles The Risk Of Serious Heart Disease

Living Alone Doubles The Risk Of Serious Heart Disease
People who live alone double their risk of serious heart disease as those who live with a partner, suggests research in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health. This includes severe angina and heart attack.

The finding is based on a study of more than 138,000 adults between the ages of 30 and 69 living in one area (Aarhus) of Denmark.

Between 2000 and 2002, 646 people were diagnosed with severe angina, or sustained a heart attack, or sudden cardiac death, a spectrum of conditions known as acute coronary syndrome.

When analysed in detail, using information from population registers, poor educational attainment and living on a pension were linked to an increased risk of the syndrome.

But the two strongest predictive factors for the syndrome were age and living alone.

Women above the age of 60 and living by themselves, and men over the age of 50, in the same position, were twice as likely to have the syndrome as everyone else.

Lone women over 60 comprised just over 5 per cent, and lone men over 50 just under 8 per cent, of the whole population.

Yet lone women in this age group accounted for a third of all deaths from the syndrome within 30 days of diagnosis, while lone men in this age group accounted for two thirds of deaths.........

Posted by: Daniel      Permalink         Source


July 11, 2006, 7:22 AM CT

Hypertension Provokes Cardiac Insufficiency

Hypertension Provokes Cardiac Insufficiency
The Journal of the American College of Cardiology has just published, in its electronic edition, an article by scientists from the CIMA of the University of Navarra and the Hospital Donostia of San Sebastián. The article describes a newly-discovered mechanism through which the hearts of persons with high blood pressure can suffer structural damages, which can impede functioning and provoke cardiac insufficiency in these patients.

The authors designed a blood analysis which detects whether this mechanism is damaging the heart, which in turn makes possible the use of therapeutic techniques to block the mechanism. The article opens a new path for the understanding of cardiac insufficiency in hypertensive patients, as well as early detection and possible prevention of cardiac damage.

5 years after first diagnosis, the survival rate is less than 50%.

As is known, cardiac insufficiency is the clinical situation which results from the majority of chronic cardiac diseases. The prevalence of cardiac insufficiency has been increasing considerably for a number of years, and has come to be an issue of epidemic proportions. Along with the magnitude of the problem, there is also its severity: 5 after initial diagnosis, the survival rate of the patients is below 50%.........

Posted by: Daniel      Permalink         Source


July 7, 2006, 7:40 AM CT

Statins stop hepatitis C virus

Statins stop hepatitis C virus
A new study shows that statins, which are typically used as anti-cholesterol medications, can inhibit the replication of the hepatitis C virus (HCV). They could replace ribavirin in combination treatment with interferon. These findings appear in the July 2006 issue of Hepatology, the official journal of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD). Published by John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hepatology is available online via Wiley InterScience at http://www.interscience.wiley.com/journal/hepatology.

Currently, 170 million people worldwide are infected with HCV. The standard therapy is a combination treatment of interferon and ribavirin, which is only effective in about 55 percent of patients. The remaining 45 percent face a threat of the disease progressing to cirrhosis and liver cancer. Based on recent reports that one statin, lovastatin, inhibits HCV replication, scientists led by Masanori Ikeda of Okayama University in Japan, tested other statins in search of a more effective anti-HCV treatment.

Using the OR6 cell culture assay system, they evaluated the anti-HCV activities of five statins: atorvastatin, fluvastatin, lovastatin, pravastatin and simvastatin. When the statins were tested alone, all except pravastatin inhibited HCV replication. Fluvastatin had the strongest effect. Atorvastatin and simvastatin had moderate effects while lovastatin had a weak effect. While pravastatin exhibited no anti-HCV activity, it did work as an inhibitor for HMG-CoA reductase, suggesting that the anti-HCV activities of the other stains are not due to the direct inhibition of HMG-CoA.........

Posted by: Mark      Permalink         Source


July 4, 2006, 10:06 AM CT

Healing The Heart With Bone Marrow

Healing The Heart With Bone Marrow
Scientists at the McEwen Centre for Regenerative Medicine at Toronto General Hospital have discovered the 'SOS' distress signal that mobilizes specific heart repair cells from the bone marrow to the injured heart after a heart attack.

While it has long been known that bone marrow cells have the ability to clear the dead tissue after a heart attack, what has not been known until now is the critically important role of bone marrow adult stem cells in repairing a damaged heart, restoring its function and enhancing the growth of new blood vessels.

"These cells act like generals in a battlefield, explained Dr. Shafie Fazel, cardiac surgery resident at TGH, University of Toronto surgeon/scientist program fellow and lead author of the study entitled, "Cardioprotective c-kit+ cells are from the bone marrow and regulate the myocardial balance of angiogenic cytokines," published recently in The Journal of Clinical Investigation. "When damaged heart tissue sends out an 'SOS' distress signal, this subset of bone marrow cells mobilizes quickly and stimulates the growth of new blood vessels in the heart. This is the first step in repairing the heart and in preventing the vicious downward spiral of heart failure in which the heart progressively thins and dilates, eventually causing death." Despite advances in surgical procedures, mechanical assistance devices, drug treatment, and organ transplantation, more than half of patients with congestive heart failure die within five years of initial diagnosis.........

Posted by: Daniel      Permalink         Source


June 27, 2006, 11:37 PM CT

Variable Blood Pressure Increases Risk Of Stroke Death

Variable Blood Pressure Increases Risk Of Stroke Death
Erratic blood pressure during the first hours after a stroke dramatically lowers the chances of survival. That's the finding of a Mayo Clinic study reported in the current issue of the journal Neurology.

The scientists studied 71 emergency room patients with ischemic stroke symptoms of less than 24 hours. Blood pressures were checked every five minutes during the patients' stay in the emergency department. Results showed that patients with widely fluctuating blood pressure during the first three hours in the emergency room were much less likely to survive more than 90 days after the stroke.

"These data suggest that additional studies are needed to clarify the optimal management of blood pressure in the setting of acute ischemic stroke," says Latha Stead, M.D., Mayo Clinic emergency medicine specialist and lead author of the study. "Until those studies are performed, health care providers should be careful not to overtreat hypertension acutely after ischemic stroke and need to consider urgently supporting blood pressure in those patients in whom the blood pressure is low".

In an earlier study, also published in Neurology, the research team had shown that a low initial blood pressure in stroke patients upon arrival in the emergency department was an early indicator of poorer survival. This new research supports that finding, but clarifies that of all the aspects of blood pressure studied, the variability -- particularly in diastolic blood pressure -- during the emergency room stay was the most predictive of a poor outcome. The scientists believe the increased mortality of patients in this study was due to impaired autoregulation of blood pressure and that those who had a more constant blood pressure had better flow of blood to the ischemic penumbra -- the part of the brain that lacked in blood supply, but had enough blood flow that it might still be saved with aggressive therapy. This differs from the infarcted tissue, which is damaged beyond repair.........

Posted by: Daniel      Permalink         Source


June 26, 2006, 7:02 PM CT

Heart Implant Patients' Anxiety

Heart Implant Patients' Anxiety
Implantable heart devices are the therapy of choice for patients with potentially life-threatening irregular heartbeats. But the thought of receiving a high-energy shock to restore normal cardiac rhythm can strike fear in their hearts nonetheless.

Just ask Ed Burns, of Ocala, who received an implantable cardioverter defibrillator, or ICD, five years ago. The uncertainty of when or if the device would fire made him wary of driving long distances. Before setting out on a road trip to California to visit family, Burns researched and made a list of every medical center along the route that could treat ICD patients.

Now a new tool from the University of Florida can help health-care providers identify which patients may need psychological services to cope with anxiety. It's called the Florida Shock Anxiety Scale, and UF scientists report on its effectiveness in the current issue of Pacing and Clinical Electrophysiology.

The research was done as part of a continuing series of investigations on ICD recipients' psychological health led by Samuel Sears, Ph.D., an associate professor in the department of clinical and health psychology at the UF College of Public Health and Health Professions, and Jamie Conti, M.D., an associate professor in the College of Medicine.........

Posted by: Daniel      Permalink         Source


June 22, 2006, 8:47 PM CT

Risk Of Being Fired Near Retirement

Risk Of Being Fired Near Retirement
Involuntary job loss near retirement more than doubles the risk of heart attack and stroke, scientists at Yale School of Medicine report in a major national study published in Occupational and Environmental Medicine.

The results are based on 10-year observations of 4,301 individuals between age 51 and 61 out of which 582 had lost their jobs during that period. The study is the extension of an earlier study, in which the same sample was tracked for six years. The earlier research indicated heightened risk of stroke, but not a definitive link between job loss and heart attacks.

"With longer follow-up and heart attack and stroke events, we were able to better assess the association between employment separation and the medical outcomes," said William T. Gallo, the lead author of the study and associate research scientist in the Department of Epidemiology and Public Health at Yale School of Medicine.

The scientists used 10 years of data from the nationally representative Health and Retirement Survey in their research. Starting with a sample of employed individuals, they identified 582 workers who were either laid off or left jobless because of a business closing. The study compared their risk of heart attack and stroke to a group that included 3,719 workers who remained employed. In considering the effect of job loss, the scientists also took into account other risk factors such as smoking, high blood pressure, obesity and depressive symptoms.........

Posted by: Daniel      Permalink         Source


June 22, 2006, 8:36 PM CT

Statins Linked to Lower Risk of Cataracts

Statins Linked to Lower Risk of Cataracts
A five-year study of people who took cholesterol-lowering statin drugs found they had a 40 percent lower incidence of the most common kind of cataract.

And the incidence of nuclear cataracts, in which the lens of the eye grows cloudy as a person ages, was 60 percent lower in statin users who never smoked and didn't have diabetes, the scientists said.

The best explanation is that the benefit is linked to statins' antioxidant activity, said Kristine Lee, a statistician at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, who was involved with the study.

"Part of the reason we looked at statins is that oxidative stress is correlation to cataract development," Lee said.

No relationship was found between statin use and two less common forms of the eye condition, cortical and posterior subcapsular cataracts.

The findings are reported in the June 21 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

The Wisconsin scientists examined data from the Beaver Dam Eye Study, which followed 1,299 persons who were first examined between 1998 and 2000. In the five-year follow-up period 12.2 percent of the statin users developed nuclear cataracts, compared to 17.2 percent of people who weren't taking the drugs.........

Posted by: Mike      Permalink         Source


June 19, 2006, 9:23 PM CT

Suggest your News Item To Medicineworld

Suggest your News Item To Medicineworld
As you are aware we are the leading publishers of health news on the web. We publish news items in various forms including numerous blogs and news items. We invite you to participate in our new collection.

We are looking for quality news items that would be interesting to our readers. Now you may suggest the news item from your site to be included at Medicineworld.org. Inclusion of news item at our site get instantaneous attention since the item is illustrated from various blog posts. Addition of pictures to the item adds additional attraction to your news item. Inclusion in the Medicineworld.org site brings quality links and visitors to your site.

If you have an interesting news item related to health, share it with Medicineworld.org and we share it with the world.

Suggest your News Item To Medicineworld........

Posted by: Janet      Permalink


June 18, 2006, 6:06 PM CT

Vegetables May Reduce Hardening Of Arteries

Vegetables May Reduce Hardening Of Arteries
New research suggests one reason vegetables may be so good for us - a study in mice found that a mixture of five common vegetables reduced hardening of the arteries by 38 percent compared to animals eating a non-vegetable diet. Conducted by Wake Forest University School of Medicine, the research is published in the current issue of the Journal of Nutrition.

"While everyone knows that eating more vegetables is supposed to be good for you, no one had shown before that it can actually inhibit the development of atherosclerosis," said Michael Adams, D.V.M., lead researcher. "This suggests how a diet high in vegetables may help prevent heart attacks and strokes."

The study used specially bred mice that rapidly develop atherosclerosis, the formation on blood vessel walls of fatty plaques that eventually protrude into the vessel's opening and can reduce blood flow. The mice have elevated low-density lipoprotein ( LDL), or "bad" cholesterol, which is also a risk factor for atherosclerosis in humans.

Half of the mice in the study were fed a vegetable-free diet and half got 30 percent of their calories from a mixture of freeze-dried broccoli, green beans, corn, peas and carrots. These five vegetables are among the top-10 vegetables in the United States based on frequency of consumption.........

Posted by: Daniel      Permalink         Source



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Heart disease
About 13 million Americans (about 7 percent of the total population) suffer from coronary artery disease. Coronary artery disease is the leading cause of death in American men and women amounting a staggering 20 percent of all causes of death. About half of all deaths related to cardiovascular diseases occur from coronary artery disease. Through this heart watch blog we will have our humble contribution towards making men and women aware of the risks of heart diseases.

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