Why is Cardiovascular Disease Now Leading Cause of Death in China?

heart disease in ChinaLifestyle changes. The past several decades in China have seen major shifts in eating habits, exercise patterns, and smoking behavior. These lifestyle changes have led to increases in all of the major risk factors associated with cardiovascular disease including high blood pressure, high cholesterol, high blood glucose, and obesity.

This is the conclusion of a 20-year investigation into the effects of lifestyle changes on cardiovascular disease in China. The comprehensive study included data from 26,000 individuals over the age of 35 years from 4,400 Chinese households in nine provinces across China. The researchers collected data on 17 risk factors for heart disease including blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol, body-mass index (BMI), and physical activity. These risk factors included 11 dietary factors such as high dietary salt and processed meat levels, as well as low fruit, vegetable, and fiber content. Read more

Inflammation Connects Psoriatic Arthritis and Coronary Artery Disease

Psoriatic Arthritis and Coronary Artery DiseaseInflammation may be the reason people with psoriatic arthritis have an increased risk of coronary artery disease, according to a recent article in Cardiology News. This study compared the amount of coronary artery plaque in 50 patients with psoriatic arthritis and 25 healthy controls. Both groups of people were similar in age, smoking status, gender and presence of metabolic syndrome. The researchers found coronary artery plaque in more patients with psoriatic arthritis (78%, 39 out of 50 patients) than healthy controls (44%, 11 out of 25 people). Read more

Heart Disease Remains Leading Cause of Death for Americans

heart disease newsCDC statistics continue to point at heart disease as the number one killer of Americans, with cancer coming in second. Other causes of mortality ranked as serious by the Center included chronic lower respiratory diseases, car accidents, drug overdoses, and stroke. This is no surprise to cardiologists, as heart disease has remained in the top mortality spot for many years. On the plus side, the CDC also noted a 1% drop in overall adult deaths for 2014, with both adult and infant mortality rates (thanks to a 2.3% for the latter) sitting at a record low. Read more

Celebration of Life Events

“Celebration of Life” events are taking place at many hospitals across the country. Last week, celebrations were held at Orange Regional Medical Center in Middletown, New York; Eastland Memorial Hospital, Eastland, Texas; and, Weatherford Regional Medical Center, Weatherford, Texas. These events enable clinicians and staff to reconnect personally with patients.

celebrationoflife1At the Orange Regional Medical Center, Jonathan Schiller, Chief Operating Officer, introduced the event and Dr. Apurva Motivala reviewed the cardiology program and the passion that drives their staff to create wonderful recovery stories.

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Wall Street Journal Reports on Decline in Inappropriate Stent Procedures

A study, presented at the AHA conference this week, shows that inappropriate stent procedures are on a decline, after physicians and hospitals came under fire for overuse of unnecessary stents for patients who did not necessarily need them. http://on.wsj.com/1WM17Og

The decline is likely a response to the appropriate use criteria, published in 2009 and updated in 2012.

Stent procedures, however, still have a significant role in appropriate cases. Patients that fulfill the Protected PCI criteria—with complex anatomy, comorbidities and advanced heart failure—often require stents to open up blockages that are preventing the heart and other organs from getting perfused.

Similar to the Impella® device, stents can be beneficial in specific types of patients, and when used appropriately, can lead to improved quality of life for the patient.