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Top 10 Advances in Cardiac Research in 2005

Stem cells and a new smoking cessation drug top the American Heart Association's annual list

THURSDAY, Dec. 29 (HealthDay News) -- The use of stem-like cells from a patient's own bone marrow to restore heart function is top on the list of the 10 major advances in heart disease and stroke research in 2005, according to the American Heart Association. The second most important advance was an experimental new drug, varenicline, which may help more smokers kick the habit. In a clinical trial of about 2,000 patients evaluating a placebo, bupropion or varenicline, quit rates were 17.7%, 30% and 44%, respectively.

Other advances include:

  • a study showing an approximately 50% reduction in major adverse cardiac events in patients receiving drug-eluting stents compared with metal stents
  • a study showing that passive smokers increase their risk of coronary heart disease by 30% compared with 80% for smokers
  • a study showing the benefits of an implantable defibrillator for treating congestive heart failure
  • a study showing the benefits of hot and cold treatment for enhancing the sensory and motor function of stroke patients paralyzed upper limbs
  • a study showing a genotype increases survival twofold after a heart attack and beta-blocker therapy

The American Heart Association has been compiling a yearly top 10 list since 1996.

More Information -- AHA

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