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October 2006 Briefing - Cardiology

Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Cardiology for October 2006. 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.

Statins Lower Mortality in Heart Failure Patients

TUESDAY, Oct. 31 (HealthDay News) -- Statin therapy lowered mortality rates in eligible heart failure patients and was linked to fewer hospitalizations and better clinical outcomes in those with and without cardiac disease, researchers report in the Nov. 1 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Exercise Improves Heart Risk Factors in Obese Teens

MONDAY, Oct. 30 (HealthDay News) -- Six months of exercise can boost vascular function in obese adolescents and improve their cardiovascular disease risk factors, including a reduction in carotid intima-media thickness, researchers report in the Nov. 7 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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Hospital Delay Reduces Survival in Primary Angioplasty

MONDAY, Oct. 30 (HealthDay News) -- The survival benefit of angioplasty over clot-busting drugs for ST-elevation myocardial infarction declines with increasing door-to-balloon times and also varies with patient characteristics, according to a study published online Oct. 30 in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association.

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Multidetector CT Scan Can Rule Out Acute Coronary Syndrome

MONDAY, Oct. 30 (HealthDay News) -- In patients presenting with acute chest pain, coronary multidetector computed tomography (MDCT) may help rule out acute coronary syndrome and improve the accuracy of triage, according to a study published online Oct. 30 in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association.

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Aspirin Reduces Platelet Aggregation After Laser Therapy

FRIDAY, Oct. 27 (HealthDay News) -- Treatment of platelet-rich plasma with aspirin can reduce platelet aggregation by 58 percent after high-energy excimer laser treatment, according to a study in animals in the October issue of Lasers in Surgery and Medicine.

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U.S. Decline in Smoking May Be Stalled

FRIDAY, Oct. 27 (HealthDay News) -- Data from a 2005 survey indicates that 20.9 percent of U.S. adults smoke cigarettes, a finding that could mean the number of adult smokers in the United States has not declined for the first time in eight years, according to a report in the Oct. 27 issue of the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

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Drug-Eluting Stents More Effective Than Bare Metal

FRIDAY, Oct. 27 (HealthDay News) -- Drug-eluting stents result in lower rates of revascularization, and both sirolimus-eluting stents and paclitaxel-eluting stents are safe and effective, according to a report published online Oct. 23 in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association.

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Simple Stenting Best for Coronary Artery Bifurcation

FRIDAY, Oct. 27 (HealthDay News) -- Treating de novo coronary artery bifurcation lesions with sirolimus-eluting stents (SES) produces excellent results, with a simple stenting strategy associated with reduced times for both the procedure and fluoroscopy, according to a report published online Oct. 23 in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association.

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Post-Anticoagulant D-dimer Sign of Recurrent Clot Risk

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 25 (HealthDay News) -- Thromboembolism patients who have abnormal D-dimer levels a month after stopping anticoagulants are at greater risk of recurrence than other patients, but resuming treatment can reduce the risk, researchers report in the Oct. 26 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Racial Disparities Seen in Medicare Managed Care Plans

TUESDAY, Oct. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Quality of care is worse for black Medicare managed-care enrollees than their white counterparts, largely due to different outcomes in the same plan, not plan selection, according to a new analysis in the Oct. 25 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Remote Control MRI Feasible for Cardiovascular Patients

TUESDAY, Oct. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Remote control magnetic resonance imaging produces significantly more reliable images than conventional local imaging in cardiovascular procedures, researchers report in the November issue of Radiology.

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Moderate Drinking Decreases Men's Heart Attack Risk

MONDAY, Oct. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Moderate drinking may lower the risk of heart attack in healthy men, researchers report in the Oct. 23 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Thromboprophylaxis Effective in Post-Acute Care of Elderly

MONDAY, Oct. 23 (HealthDay News) -- An evidence-based, multifaceted venous thromboprophylaxis intervention designed to increase clinicians' compliance with clinical guidelines significantly decreased the incidence of deep venous thrombosis in elderly post-acute care patients, according to a paper in the Oct. 23 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Increased Mortality Seen in Older Diabetics

FRIDAY, Oct. 20 (HealthDay News) -- Compared to older non-diabetic adults, older diabetics have a significantly increased risk of death, including a twofold higher risk of death from cardiovascular disease, even when their diabetes is treated, according to a study published in the October issue of the open-access journal PLoS-Medicine.

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Popular Press Distorts Reality of Coma Patients

FRIDAY, Oct. 20 (HealthDay News) -- Although few news stories about coma contain gross inaccuracies, they are skewed toward younger victims of motor vehicle crashes and violence, according to study findings published in the October issue of the Mayo Clinic Proceedings.

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FDA, Novartis Issue Gleevec Safety Alert

FRIDAY, Oct. 20 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration and Novartis Pharmaceuticals have issued a safety alert for possible severe congestive heart failure and left ventricular dysfunction in patients taking Gleevec (imatinib mesylate).

www.fda.gov/MedWatch/report.htm
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Depression in Heart Failure Linked to Poorer Outcomes

THURSDAY, Oct. 19 (HealthDay News) -- Although one in five heart failure patients reports clinically significant depression -- which is linked to poorer outcomes -- the rate may be higher in those who have advanced disease or when patients are screened with questionnaires, according to research in the Oct. 17 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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Peripheral Arterial Disease Linked to Higher Mortality

THURSDAY, Oct. 19 (HealthDay News) -- Concomitant peripheral arterial disease is linked with higher mortality after percutaneous coronary intervention and myocardial infarction, and independently predicts short- and long-term death rates, according to research in the Oct. 17 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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Dilated Cardiomyopathy More Common in Boys

THURSDAY, Oct. 19 (HealthDay News) -- In patients under age 18, dilated cardiomyopathy is more common in boys than girls and in blacks than whites, and their outcomes are similar to those seen in adults, according to a study in the Oct. 18 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Endarterectomy Safer Than Stenting for Carotid Stenosis

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 18 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with 60 percent or greater carotid artery stenosis, endarterectomy has better survival and a lower incidence of stroke in the short term than stenting, according to the results of a randomized trial published in the Oct. 19 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine. The study was halted early due to the clear superiority of endarterectomy.

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Adverse Drug Events Lead to Emergency Department Visits

TUESDAY, Oct. 17 (HealthDay News) -- Adverse drug events, or ADEs, may account for more than 700,000 emergency department visits in the United States each year, and the elderly are at higher risk of visits and hospitalizations than younger patients, researchers report in the Oct. 18 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Breathing Exercises Reduce Pneumonia Risk After Bypass

TUESDAY, Oct. 17 (HealthDay News) -- Patients who are at high risk of pneumonia or other pulmonary complications after coronary artery bypass graft surgery are less likely to experience problems if they undergo preoperative inspiratory muscle training (IMT), according to study results published in the Oct. 18 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Fish Intake is Healthy Despite Risk of Contaminants

TUESDAY, Oct. 17 (HealthDay News) -- The health benefits of seafood consumption outweigh the risk of contaminants contained in some fish, but young women and nursing mothers should limit themselves to two weekly servings of certain species only, researchers report in the Oct. 18 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). A separate report from the Institute of Medicine was also released Tuesday in an effort to help consumers sort through information on the risks and benefits of seafood consumption.

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Donor's Hepatitis C Affects Heart-Transplant Outcome

TUESDAY, Oct. 17 (HealthDay News) -- Short- and long-term survival is significantly lower among heart-transplant patients who receive hearts from donors who were positive for the hepatitis C virus (HCV) than among patients who receive hearts from virus-free donors, according to a report published in the Oct. 18 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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U.S. Hospital Mortality Rates Improve, But Quality Varies

MONDAY, Oct. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Although mortality rates at U.S. hospitals are generally improving, the quality varies widely, with a typical Medicare patient having a 69 percent lower chance of dying in the best hospitals compared with the worst hospitals, according to a report published Oct. 16 by HealthGrades, an independent health care rating group.

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Nano-Hemostat Solutions Quickly Stop Bleeding

FRIDAY, Oct. 13 (HealthDay News) -- Biodegradable, peptide-containing nano-hemostat solutions stop bleeding in wounded rodents within seconds and could be used to reduce the amount of blood needed during surgery, according to the results of a study published online Oct. 13 in Nanomedicine.

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Gene Variants Associated with Common Obesity

FRIDAY, Oct. 13 (HealthDay News) -- Bardet-Biedl syndrome gene variants are associated with the risk of common obesity in children and adults, according to the results of a study published in the October issue of Diabetes.

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Two-Drug Combination May Reverse Heart Attack Damage

THURSDAY, Oct. 12 (HealthDay News) -- A drug combination may pack a one-two punch against myocardial infarction damage by regenerating cardiomyocytes and providing a fresh blood supply, according to an animal study published online Oct. 10 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Early Edition.

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Race, Sex, Age Impact Level-I Trauma Center Transfers

THURSDAY, Oct. 12 (HealthDay News) -- Even after controlling for injury severity, non-clinical factors such as race, gender, age and insurance status significantly impact a patient's risk for hospital transfer to level-I trauma centers, researchers report in the October issue of the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery.

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Gene Polymorphism Linked to Type 2 Diabetes Complications

THURSDAY, Oct. 12 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with type 2 diabetes, a polymorphism in the alpha-adducin 1 (ADD1) gene is associated with an increased risk of macrovascular complications and death, according to a brief report published in the October issue of Diabetes.

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Drug May Help Female Smokers Kick the Habit

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 11 (HealthDay News) -- In female smokers, a combination of behavioral therapy, nicotine patches and the opiate blocker naltrexone may increase the odds of quitting, according to study findings published in the October issue of Nicotine & Tobacco Research.

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Hypnotherapy Helps Relieve Non-Cardiac Chest Pain

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 11 (HealthDay News) -- Hypnotherapy relieves pain, improves well-being and reduces medication usage in patients with non-cardiac chest pain, according to a study in the October issue of Gut.

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Psoriasis Associated with Myocardial Infarction Risk

TUESDAY, Oct. 10 (HealthDay News) -- Psoriasis may increase the risk of having a myocardial infarction, particularly in younger patients with severe disease, according to study results published in the Oct. 11 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Polyunsaturated Fats May Help Heart Failure Patients

TUESDAY, Oct. 10 (HealthDay News) -- Heart failure patients who take supplemental polyunsaturated fatty acids, or PUFAs, have an improvement in arterial baroreflex function in cardiac and peripheral vasculature as well as heart rate variability, according to a report published online Oct. 9 in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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Walnuts May Help Reverse Effects of High-Fat Meal

TUESDAY, Oct. 10 (HealthDay News) -- Walnuts improve arterial flow-mediated dilation (FMD) immediately after a high-fat meal, and walnuts and olive oil acutely conserve protective arterial endothelial cells after such a meal, according to a report published online Oct. 9 in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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Undiagnosed Stroke Symptoms Common, Especially in Blacks

MONDAY, Oct. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Undiagnosed stroke symptoms are common in the general U.S. population, with a higher prevalence among blacks and those with lower incomes, according to study findings published in the Oct. 9 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Coronary Artery Perforation Much-Feared PCI Complication

THURSDAY, Oct. 5 (HealthDay News) -- Despite advances in the management of percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI), coronary perforation remains a feared complication with high in-hospital mortality, according to a study in the Oct. 1 issue of the American Journal of Cardiology.

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Statin Users Live Longer Than Non-Users, Study Finds

THURSDAY, Oct. 5 (HealthDay News) -- Even though they are at higher risk of mortality, elderly statin users tend to live a mean of two years longer than those who do not use statins, according to a report in the Oct. 1 issue of the American Journal of Cardiology.

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Multiple Drug-Eluting Stents May Be Safe, Effective

THURSDAY, Oct. 5 (HealthDay News) -- Using several overlapping full metal jacket stents to treat complex coronary artery lesions can be effective, according to a report in the Oct. 1 issue of the American Journal of Cardiology.

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Sirolimus-Eluting Stents Best for Coronary Lesions

TUESDAY, Oct. 3 (HealthDay News) -- Sirolimus-eluting stents (SES) result in lower rates of major adverse cardiac events compared with paclitaxel-eluting stents (PES), according to a report in the Oct. 3 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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Sudden Cardiac Deaths Decline in Young Italian Athletes

TUESDAY, Oct. 3 (HealthDay News) -- After the 1982 introduction of a systematic, nationwide cardiovascular screening program for young athletes in Italy, the annual incidence of sudden cardiovascular deaths has significantly declined, according to a study published in the Oct. 4 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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One-Third of U.S. Adolescents Physically Unfit

MONDAY, Oct. 2 (HealthDay News) -- Approximately one-third of teenagers in the United States do not meet the recommended standard of cardiorespiratory fitness, according to a study published in the October issue of the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine.

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