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Category: Cardiology | Monthly Briefing

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March 2011 Briefing - Cardiology

Last Updated: April 01, 2011.

 

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Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Cardiology for March 2011. This roundup includes the latest research news from journal articles, as well as the FDA approvals and regulatory changes that are the most likely to affect clinical practice.

Heart Defect in Children Related to Migraine With Aura

THURSDAY, March 31 (HealthDay News) -- The prevalence of patent foramen ovale (PFO), a common defect in the wall between the two upper chambers of the heart, is significantly greater in children who have migraines with aura, according to a study published online March 31 in The Journal of Pediatrics.

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Exercise Plus Dieting Superior in Older Obese Individuals

WEDNESDAY, March 30 (HealthDay News) -- Dieting plus exercise may be better than either alone for improvement in physical function in older adults who are obese, according to research published in the March 31 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Two-Thirds of U.S. Residents Get Sufficient Vitamin D

WEDNESDAY, March 30 (HealthDay News) -- About two-thirds of the U.S. population takes in sufficient amounts of vitamin D, but 8 percent may be at risk for vitamin D deficiency, according to a March data brief published by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics.

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FDA: Store Pradaxa Only in Original Containers

WEDNESDAY, March 30 (HealthDay News) -- The anticoagulant dabigatran etexilate mesylate (Pradaxa), a direct thrombin inhibitor, should be dispensed and stored only in its original bottle or blister package because exposure to moisture may cause product breakdown and loss of potency, according to an alert issued by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

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Safflower Oil Improves Glycemia, Inflammation, Lipids

WEDNESDAY, March 30 (HealthDay News) -- Supplementation with safflower (SAF) oil improves glycemia, inflammation, and blood lipids compared to treatment with conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) in postmenopausal obese women, according to a study published online Jan. 12 in Clinical Nutrition.

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Accurate Cerebral Aneurysm Diagnosis by CT Angiography

WEDNESDAY, March 30 (HealthDay News) -- Computed tomographic (CT) angiography, especially by modern multidetector CT, is a highly accurate tool for diagnosing cerebral aneurysms, according to a meta-analysis published online March 9 in the Annals of Neurology.

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Online Health Records Less Used by Minorities, Poor

WEDNESDAY, March 30 (HealthDay News) -- Online personal health records (PHRs) are less frequently used by racial or ethnic minorities and patients with low annual income, according to a study published in the March 28 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Discharge to Skilled Nursing Facilities Linked to Death

WEDNESDAY, March 30 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with heart failure discharged to skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) have an increased risk for rehospitalization and death, according to a study published online March 29 in Circulation: Heart Failure.

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High Number of 'Medalists' Free From Diabetes Complications

WEDNESDAY, March 30 (HealthDay News) -- The relatively high proportion of patients with type 1 diabetes for 50 years or more without complications indicates the presence of protective factors, according to a study published in the April issue of Diabetes Care.

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Conflicts of Interest Abound in Cardiology Guidelines

TUESDAY, March 29 (HealthDay News) -- Conflicts of interest (COIs) are prevalent in cardiology clinical practice guidelines, but there is still a substantial number of experienced expert guideline writers and reviewers without COIs, according to a study published in the March 28 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Ambulatory BP Helps Identify Resistant Hypertension

TUESDAY, March 29 (HealthDay News) -- Ambulatory blood pressure monitoring is a useful prognosis tool to differentiate between true and white coat resistant hypertension, according to a study published online March 28 in Hypertension.

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Elevated Risk Factors Linked to Atrial Fibrillation

TUESDAY, March 29 (HealthDay News) -- More than half the burden of atrial fibrillation (AF) results from having one or more elevated cardiovascular risk factors and is theoretically preventable, according to a study published online March 28 in Circulation.

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Decline Seen in Global Youth Mortality Over Last 50 Years

TUESDAY, March 29 (HealthDay News) -- Overall mortality declined substantially between 1955 and 2004 in children aged 14 years or younger and in females aged 15 to 24, but a smaller decline was evident for males aged 15 to 24 years, according to a study published online March 29 in The Lancet.

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Room Cleaning Linked to Lower Drug-Resistant Infections

TUESDAY, March 29 (HealthDay News) -- Enhanced intensive care unit (ICU) cleaning may reduce methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and vancomycin-resistant enterococci (VRE) transmission, according to a study published in the March 28 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Guidelines Provided for Deep Vein Thrombosis Management

MONDAY, March 28 (HealthDay News) -- Blood thinners should not be the only therapy considered for patients with deep vein thrombosis (DVT), according to a scientific statement published online March 21 in Circulation.

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Cardiac Risk Management Improves After Calcium Scan

MONDAY, March 28 (HealthDay News) -- Coronary artery calcium (CAC) scanning provides better risk factor control in coronary artery disease (CAD) without increasing downstream medical costs, according to a study published online March 23 in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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Poorer Health Outcomes for Elderly in Public Housing

MONDAY, March 28 (HealthDay News) -- Elders residing in public housing have poor self-rated health status as well as increased prevalence of fatigue and comorbid conditions compared to those who live in the community, according to a study published in the Winter issue of Ethnicity & Disease.

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High Blood Pressure Tied to Rapid Gait Slowing in Elderly

MONDAY, March 28 (HealthDay News) -- High blood pressure in well-functioning older adults accelerates gait slowing over an extended period, even when hypertension is well controlled or develops later in life, according to a study published in the March issue of the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

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Heart Attack Risk Doubles After Transient Ischemic Attack

FRIDAY, March 25 (HealthDay News) -- The average annual incidence of myocardial infarction (MI) after transient ischemic attack (TIA) is approximately double that of the general population, according to a study published online 24 March in Stroke.

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Reduced Hours for Trainees Has Had Little Effect in U.S.

THURSDAY, March 24 (HealthDay News) -- Reducing work hours for doctors in training to less than 80 per week has had little impact on patient outcomes or postgraduate training in the United States, according to a literature review published online March 22 in BMJ.

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Drug Reduces Rate of Conversion to Type 2 Diabetes

WEDNESDAY, March 23 (HealthDay News) -- Pioglitazone effectively reduces conversion to type 2 diabetes in people with impaired glucose tolerance, though it may also lead to weight gain and edema, according to research published in the March 24 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Mercury Exposure and CVD Not Associated

WEDNESDAY, March 23 (HealthDay News) -- Exposure to mercury does not appear to increase the risk of stroke, coronary heart disease, or total cardiovascular disease, according to research published in the March 24 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Rapid Assessment Identifies Low-Risk Chest Pain Patients

WEDNESDAY, March 23 (HealthDay News) -- A novel two-hour accelerated diagnosis protocol (ADP) appears quite accurate in identifying patients with chest pains who are at low risk for a major adverse cardiac event and could probably be discharged early, according to research published online March 23 in The Lancet.

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Lower Troponin Assay Threshold Aids MI Diagnosis

WEDNESDAY, March 23 (HealthDay News) -- Lowering the diagnostic threshold of plasma troponin in patients with suspected acute coronary syndrome (ACS) is associated with lower risk of death and recurrent myocardial infarction (MI), according to a study published in the March 23/30 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Fibrate Use Rises in U.S. but Remains Stable in Canada

TUESDAY, March 22 (HealthDay News) -- Fibrate use has increased steadily in the United States but remains stable in Canada, according to a study published in the March 23/30 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Episodic Physical or Sexual Activity Linked to MI

TUESDAY, March 22 (HealthDay News) -- Episodic physical and sexual activity is associated with an increased risk of acute cardiac events, especially myocardial infarction (MI), although the risk is attenuated by increased habitual activity, according to a meta-analysis published in the March 23/30 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Dalteparin Not Superior to Unfractionated Heparin

TUESDAY, March 22 (HealthDay News) -- Dalteparin, a low-molecular-weight heparin, does not appear any more effective in lowering the incidence of proximal deep-vein thrombosis than unfractionated heparin, according to research published online March 22 in The New England Journal of Medicine.

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Long-Term Tamoxifen Lowers Breast CA Recurrence Risk

TUESDAY, March 22 (HealthDay News) -- Women with breast cancer who take tamoxifen for five years appear to have a lower risk of recurrence or contralateral breast cancer 15 years after starting treatment as compared to women who take the drug for two years, and they may also have a lower risk of cardiovascular disease and death from a cardiovascular event, according to a study published online March 21 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Combination Therapy Given to Elderly Without Indications

MONDAY, March 21 (HealthDay News) -- Combination therapy of angiotensin-converting-enzyme (ACE) inhibitors and angiotensin-receptor blockers is often prescribed without established indications, and is associated with an elevated risk of adverse renal outcomes compared to monotherapy, according to a study published online March 21 in CMAJ, the journal of the Canadian Medical Association.

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Suppressive Therapy Manages Clopidogrel Hypersensitivity

MONDAY, March 21 (HealthDay News) -- Clopidogrel hypersensitivity, which affects up to 6 percent of patients, may be successfully managed using corticosteroids and antihistamines, without interrupting drug therapy, according to a study published in the March 15 issue of The American Journal of Cardiology.

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Majority of Parents Approve of Smoke Exposure Testing

MONDAY, March 21 (HealthDay News) -- The majority of parents, both smokers and nonsmokers, want their children tested for tobacco-smoke exposure as part of their children's health care settings, according to a study published online March 21 in Pediatrics.

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Diabetes Drug Linked to Increased Cardiovascular Risk

FRIDAY, March 18 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with type 2 diabetes who take rosiglitazone are at greater risk of congestive heart failure, myocardial infarction (MI), and death, compared to those who take pioglitazone, according to a meta-analysis published online March 17 in BMJ.

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Stem Cells Linked to Functional Recovery of Heart Post MI

FRIDAY, March 18 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with left ventricular (LV) dysfunction due to remote myocardial infarction, injections of autologous bone marrow progenitor cells reduce heart size and scar tissue size, and improve regional contractility, according to a study published online March 17 in Circulation Research.

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Low-Dose Imaging Effective for Ruling Out CAD

THURSDAY, March 17 (HealthDay News) -- Low-dose coronary computed tomography (CT) appears as sensitive as catheter-based angiography and may provide a non-invasive alternative to the latter for ruling out coronary artery disease (CAD) in symptomatic patients, according to a meta-analysis published in the March 15 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Heart Failure Belt Identified in Southeastern United States

THURSDAY, March 17 (HealthDay News) -- A "heart failure belt" with higher heart failure mortality compared to the rest of the country has been identified in the southeastern United States, which follows a similar geographic pattern to the recognized "stroke belt," according to a study published in the March 15 issue of The American Journal of Cardiology.

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Professional Values of U.S. and U.K. Doctors Examined

THURSDAY, March 17 (HealthDay News) -- A core of professional values exists among doctors in the United States and the United Kingdom, though significant differences exist in how these values are expressed and prioritized, according to a study published online March 7 in BMJ Quality & Safety.

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CABG Ups Quality of Life More Than Drug-Eluting Stents

THURSDAY, March 17 (HealthDay News) -- Coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) still has slightly better outcomes than percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) in terms of relief from angina and improved quality of life when the latter involves drug-eluting stents rather than bare-metal stents, according to research published in the March 17 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Short Nurse Staffing Linked to Higher Patient Mortality

WEDNESDAY, March 16 (HealthDay News) -- Patient mortality appears to be higher when nurse staffing falls eight or more hours below target level and during nursing shifts when patient turnover is high, according to research published in the March 17 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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U.S. Death Rate Reaches All-Time Low

WEDNESDAY, March 16 (HealthDay News) -- The age-adjusted death rate for the United States has fallen for 10 straight years and has reached an all-time low of 741 per 100,000, or 2,436,682 deaths, in 2009, down 2.3 percent from 2008, according to a new report issued by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics.

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Early-Onset Diabetes Tied to Raised Cardiac Disease Risk

WEDNESDAY, March 16 (HealthDay News) -- Early- and late-onset diabetes are associated with an increased risk of major coronary heart disease (CHD) events and mortality, with early-onset diabetes equivalent in risk to a prior myocardial infarction (MI), according to a study published in the March 14 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Outcomes Differ Among Hepatitis C-Related Vasculitides

WEDNESDAY, March 16 (HealthDay News) -- Among patients with hepatitis C virus (HCV)-related vasculitis, those with polyarteritis nodosa (PAN) have a more severe and acute clinical presentation and a higher rate of clinical remission, according to a study published online Feb. 25 in Arthritis Care & Research.

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Raised Triglyceride Levels Do Not Cause Type 2 Diabetes

WEDNESDAY, March 16 (HealthDay News) -- Genetically raised circulating triglyceride levels do not increase the risk of type 2 diabetes, or raise fasting glucose or insulin levels, according to a study published in the March issue of Diabetes.

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High-Dose Clopidogrel Does Not Reduce Mortality Incidence

WEDNESDAY, March 16 (HealthDay News) -- A higher dose of clopidogrel does not reduce the incidence of death from cardiovascular causes, nonfatal myocardial infarction (MI), or stent thrombosis in patients with high platelet reactivity after percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) with drug eluting stents, according to a study published in the March 16 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Retinal Vein Occlusion Tied to Cerebrovascular Event Risk

WEDNESDAY, March 16 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with retinal vein occlusion (RVO) have an almost two-fold higher event risk rate for cerebrovascular accident (CVA) compared to controls, but similar rates of myocardial infarction (MI) events, according to a study published in the March issue of the Archives of Ophthalmology.

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Heavy Smoking Prevalence Decline Greatest in California

TUESDAY, March 15 (HealthDay News) -- Between 1965 and 2007, the prevalence of high-intensity smoking declined in California and in the remaining states, according to a study published in the March 16 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Regional Variation in Chronic Disease Case Fatality Rates

TUESDAY, March 15 (HealthDay News) -- There is an inverse relationship between the regional frequency of diagnoses for chronic conditions and the case-fatality rate among fee-for-service Medicare beneficiaries, according to a study published in the March 16 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Preventive Services Underused by Older Adults in U.S.

TUESDAY, March 15 (HealthDay News) -- The aging population is growing steadily, but many older adults do not receive the preventive services they need, according to a new report issued by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

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Bariatric Surgery Viable Option for Severely Obese

TUESDAY, March 15 (HealthDay News) -- Bariatric surgery is a viable option that often leads to long-term weight loss and reductions in cardiac and other risk factors in severely obese patients who have failed other weight-loss therapies, according to an American Heart Association (AHA) scientific statement published online March 14 in Circulation.

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New Vital Sign Centile Charts Derived for Children

TUESDAY, March 15 (HealthDay News) -- Centile charts derived from a systematic review of observational studies provide new evidence-based reference ranges for these vital signs but do not agree with existing reference ranges for heart rate and respiratory rate in children; the research has been published online March 15 in The Lancet.

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VAP-1 Predicts Mortality in Patients With Type 2 Diabetes

MONDAY, March 14 (HealthDay News) -- The level of serum vascular adhesion protein-1 (VAP-1), a protein involved in inflammation, can predict the 10-year mortality risk among patients with type 2 diabetes, according to a study published in the March issue of Diabetes.

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U.S. Has Higher Rates of Chronic Disease Than England

MONDAY, March 14 (HealthDay News) -- Americans experience higher rates of chronic disease and markers of disease than their English counterparts at all ages, according to a study published online March 9 in the American Journal of Epidemiology.

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Device OK'd to Continue Blood Flow During Brain Surgery

FRIDAY, March 11 (HealthDay News) -- A device that permits the rerouting of blood flow during surgery to treat a brain aneurysm or tumor in people at greater risk of stroke has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

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Daytime Sleep Offers Cardiovascular Benefits

FRIDAY, March 11 (HealthDay News) -- Daytime sleep may have cardiovascular benefits, including accelerated cardiovascular recovery from psychological stress, according to research published online Feb. 26 in the International Journal of Behavioral Medicine.

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Heart Rate Turbulence Risk Factor for Cardiac Mortality

FRIDAY, March 11 (HealthDay News) -- Abnormal heart rate turbulence (HRT) is independently associated with increased cardiac mortality risk for low-, intermediate-, and high-risk individuals, while C-reactive protein (CRP) is associated with an increased cardiac mortality risk only in those who are low risk, according to a study published in the February issue of the Journal of Cardiovascular Electrophysiology.

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Coffee Consumption Linked to Lower Stroke Risk in Women

FRIDAY, March 11 (HealthDay News) -- Women who consume one or more cups of coffee daily have a lower risk of stroke than those who consume less than one cup of coffee a day, according to a study published online March 10 in Stroke.

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Impact of Adiposity Measures on Heart Disease Risk Alike

FRIDAY, March 11 (HealthDay News) -- Body mass index (BMI), waist circumference, and waist-to-hip ratio all have a similar strength of association with cardiovascular disease, but do not significantly improve risk prediction when information on blood pressure, diabetes, and lipid levels is available, according to a study published online March 11 in The Lancet.

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Socioeconomic Factors Predict Risk of Amputation

THURSDAY, March 10 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with critical limb ischemia (CLI) are more likely to be treated in a low-volume hospital and to undergo amputation rather than limb salvage procedures if they are of a minority race, a lower socioeconomic status, or on Medicaid, according to a study published in the February issue of the Journal of Vascular Surgery.

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Nitrous Oxide May Up Risk of Myocardial Infarction

THURSDAY, March 10 (HealthDay News) -- The administration of nitrous oxide in surgeries longer than two hours is linked to an increased long-term risk of myocardial infarction (MI), but not death or stroke, according to a report in the February issue of Anesthesia & Analgesia.

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Depression Care in Hospital May Improve Cardiac Outcomes

THURSDAY, March 10 (HealthDay News) -- Among patients with depression and cardiac illness, managing depression during hospitalization improves mental health outcomes and may also improve medical outcomes after intervention, according to a study published online March 8 in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes.

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Irbesartan Does Not Prevent Cardiovascular Events in A-Fib

WEDNESDAY, March 9 (HealthDay News) -- The angiotensin-receptor blocker irbesartan fails to lower the rate of cardiovascular events in patients with atrial fibrillation, according to research published in the March 10 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Drug Delays Microalbuminuria in Type 2 Diabetes

WEDNESDAY, March 9 (HealthDay News) -- Olmesartan, an angiotensin-receptor blocker, delays the onset of microalbuminuria in people with type 2 diabetes, but it also appears to be associated with an increased risk of fatal cardiovascular events, according to research published in the March 10 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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HealthGrades Finds Rates of Patient Safety Events Vary

WEDNESDAY, March 9 (HealthDay News) -- Patients treated at hospitals rated with a HealthGrades Patient Safety Excellence Award have, on average, a 46 percent lower risk of experiencing a patient safety incident compared to those treated at the lowest-ranked hospitals, according to the eighth annual HealthGrades Patient Safety in American Hospitals Study published online March 9.

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Ethnic Differences Seen in Academic Measures for U.K. Docs

WEDNESDAY, March 9 (HealthDay News) -- United Kingdom-trained physicians and medical students with ethnic minority backgrounds tend to underperform academically compared to their white peers, according to a meta-analysis published online March 8 in BMJ.

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High HDL Cholesterol Tied to Decreased Colon Cancer Risk

WEDNESDAY, March 9 (HealthDay News) -- Higher concentrations of serum high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol are associated with a reduced risk of colon cancer, according to a study published online March 7 in Gut.

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Exergames Increase Energy Expenditure in All Children

WEDNESDAY, March 9 (HealthDay News) -- Interactive digital exercise featuring player movement (exergames) successfully elevates energy expenditure to a moderate or vigorous intensity among children with various body mass index (BMI) levels , according to a study published online March 7 in the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine.

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Brief CPR Education of Laypersons Proves Beneficial

WEDNESDAY, March 9 (HealthDay News) -- Laypersons who have been exposed to short American Heart Association (AHA) Hands-Only cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) videos are more likely to attempt CPR, and demonstrate better CPR technique than untrained individuals, according to a study published in the March issue of Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes.

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Pharmacological Meta-Analyses Rarely Report Disclosures

TUESDAY, March 8 (HealthDay News) -- Meta-analyses of pharmacological treatments rarely include information addressing primary study funding and conflicts of interest (COIs) of the authors for the included randomized control trials (RCTs), according to a study published in the March 9 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Diabetes Belt Identified in Southern United States

TUESDAY, March 8 (HealthDay News) -- A geographically congruent "diabetes belt" with high prevalence of diabetes exists in the United States, according to a study published online March 8 in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

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FDA: Adverse Events Tied to Kaletra in Preterm Infants

TUESDAY, March 8 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has notified health care providers of a revision to the label of lopinavir/ritonavir (Kaletra) oral solution to include a new warning, as administration of the oral solution may result in serious health problems among premature babies.

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Mediterranean Diet Tied to Lower Metabolic Syndrome Risk

TUESDAY, March 8 (HealthDay News) -- Adherence to a Mediterranean diet is associated with a reduced risk of metabolic syndrome (MetS) and has beneficial effects on its individual components, according to a meta-analysis published in the March 15 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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Atrial Fibrillation Tied to Higher Incidence of Dementia

TUESDAY, March 8 (HealthDay News) -- Atrial fibrillation (AF) is associated with an increased incidence of dementia, and this association is strongest in patients with stroke, according to a meta-analysis published in the March 8 issue of Neurology.

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Low-Level Lead Exposure May Spike Blood Pressure in Labor

TUESDAY, March 8 (HealthDay News) -- Low-level lead exposure, measured by umbilical blood lead levels, suggests a significant association with elevations in maternal blood pressure during labor and delivery, according to a study published online Feb. 3 in Environmental Health Perspectives.

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Less Restenosis Associated With Drug-Eluting Stents

MONDAY, March 7 (HealthDay News) -- Treatment of chronic total coronary occlusions (CTO) with drug-eluting stents (DES) rather than bare-metal stents (BMS) is associated with decreased angiographic and clinical restenosis, according to a review published in the February issue of Catheterization & Cardiovascular Interventions.

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Cancer Patients Willing to Undergo Pre-Trial Testing

MONDAY, March 7 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with advanced malignancies appear to be quite willing to undergo pharmacodynamic (PD) and pharmacokinetic (PK) tests in order to be enrolled in clinical trials, according to research published online Jan. 18 in Cancer.

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Risk Factors Identified for Catheter-Related Thrombosis

MONDAY, March 7 (HealthDay News) -- The risk of catheter-related thrombosis (CRT) is decreased by use of implanted ports and increased by previous history of deep vein thrombosis, insertion into the subclavian vein, and improper catheter tip position, according to a review published in the February issue of the Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis.

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Neoatherosclerosis Frequency Up With Drug-Eluting Stents

FRIDAY, March 4 (HealthDay News) -- Neoatherosclerosis appears to occur more often and sooner with the implantation of drug eluting stents (DES) than with bare-metal stents (BMS), according to research published online March 2 in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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Physical Activity Tied to Mortality in Kidney Recipients

FRIDAY, March 4 (HealthDay News) -- Low physical activity (PA) in renal transplant recipients (RTRs) is independently associated with increased risk for cardiovascular and all-cause mortality, according to a study published online March 3 in the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

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Inflammatory Bowel Disease Tied to Thromboembolism Risk

FRIDAY, March 4 (HealthDay News) -- Patients suffering from inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) have twice the risk of developing venous thromboembolism (VTE) compared to the general population, according to a study published online Feb. 21 in Gut.

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Depression Tied to Lower Priority of Care in Heart Attack

THURSDAY, March 3 (HealthDay News) -- Heart attack patients with a documented history of depression in their charts may be triaged to lower priority of care than patients with no documented history of depression, and they are more likely to have worse associated performance on quality indicators, according to research published online Feb. 28 in CMAJ, the journal of the Canadian Medical Association.

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Diuretic Has Similar Effect Regardless of Method or Dose

THURSDAY, March 3 (HealthDay News) -- The responses of patients with acute decompensated heart failure to loop diuretics don't appear to differ between groups administered the agent by bolus or continuous infusion, or at a high or low dose, according to research published in the March 3 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Role of Diabetes in Premature Death Is Substantial

WEDNESDAY, March 2 (HealthDay News) -- Diabetes is substantially associated with premature mortality from cancers, infectious diseases, external causes, intentional self-harm, and degenerative disorders, according to research published in the March 3 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Intensive Glucose Therapy May Not Be Best in Type 2 Diabetes

WEDNESDAY, March 2 (HealthDay News) -- Therapy designed to intensively lower glucose in people with type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular risk factors appears to lower the risk of nonfatal heart attack but is associated with an increased risk for all-cause mortality, according to research published in the March 3 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Obesity Rate in Canada Not As High As in United States

WEDNESDAY, March 2 (HealthDay News) -- More North Americans are obese today than were 20 years ago, and the prevalence of obesity in Canada is about 10 percentage points lower than it is in the United States, according to a data report issued March 2 by the U.S. National Center for Health Statistics.

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Increased Dietary Potassium Tied to Lower Stroke Risk

WEDNESDAY, March 2 (HealthDay News) -- Higher dietary potassium intake is correlated with reduced rates of stroke and may also lower the risk of coronary heart disease (CHD) and total cardiovascular disease (CVD), according to a meta-analysis published in the March 8 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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Women Underrepresented in Cardiovascular Device Trials

WEDNESDAY, March 2 (HealthDay News) -- There is a lack of sex-specific data relating to the safety and effectiveness of high-risk cardiovascular devices prior to U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval, according to a review published online March 1 in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes.

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Risk of Adverse Effects Lessens Drug Acceptance in Elderly

WEDNESDAY, March 2 (HealthDay News) -- The willingness to take medication for primary cardiovascular disease prevention in older persons is highly sensitive to its adverse effects and relatively insensitive to its benefits, according to a study published online Feb. 28 in the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Inhaled Nitric Oxide Does Not Shorten Sickle Cell Crisis

WEDNESDAY, March 2 (HealthDay News) -- Among patients with sickle cell disease (SCD), the use of inhaled nitric oxide does not reduce the time to resolution of a vaso-occlusive pain crisis (VOC) compared to placebo, according to a study published in the March 2 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Antihypertensives Beneficial in Absence of Hypertension

TUESDAY, March 1 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with a clinical history of cardiovascular disease (CVD), but without hypertension, may benefit from antihypertensive treatment to reduce CVD morbidity and mortality, according to a literature review published in the March 2 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Risk of Death From Heart Attacks Not Linked to Gender

TUESDAY, March 1 (HealthDay News) -- The association between female gender and increased mortality among patients undergoing primary percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) for ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) does not persist after adjusting for age and comorbidities, according to a study published in the January issue of the American Heart Journal.

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Teen Heart Patients Should Move to Adult Medical Care

TUESDAY, March 1 (HealthDay News) -- Doctors should transition their patients with congenital heart disease (CHD) from pediatric to adult medical care during early adolescence, according to a scientific statement from the American Heart Association (AHA) published online Feb. 28 in Circulation.

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Sugary Drinks Linked to Higher Blood Pressure

TUESDAY, March 1 (HealthDay News) -- Sugar-sweetened drinks are associated with higher blood pressure (BP) levels in adults, especially among those who consume more sodium, according to a study published online Feb. 28 in Hypertension.

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