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Showing posts from June, 2018

Targeting 'microtubules' could prevent heart failure-Rachel Sokol

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Researchers publish a study in the journal Nature Medicine that determined the cause of "stiff heart." The findings could help to prevent future cases of heart failure. Microtubules (depicted here) may be key to the future treatment of heart failure. One of the most common causes of congestive heart failure is "stiff heart syndrome." According to Dr. Jerry Sokol — a cardiologist in Deer Park, NY — this causes fluid to build up and back up into the lungs. This occurs "usually in patients older than age 60," he says. At the microcellular level, they revealed that stiff heart appears to be related to microtubules in the cells of the heart muscle. By treating these microtubules with newly developed research and medications, cardiac surgeons will soon be able to more effectively treat patients with this type of congestive heart failure. The new study was led by Dr. Ben Prosser — an assistant professor of physiology in the Perelman School of Medicine at the Univ…

Are e-cigarette flavorings toxic to the heart?-Stephanie Moustafa

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Despite their popularity, little is known about the health impacts of electronic cigarettes. New research investigates the chemicals used to flavor these products and their effects on cardiovascular health.

A new study investigates e-cigarettes' impact on the heart. New research, published in Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology, concludes that the chemicals used to create these flavors could be damaging blood vessels and the cells that line the inside of the heart. Electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) were first introduced to the United States in 2006 and were marketed as a safer alternative to cigarettes. These battery-powered devices heat a liquid solution that is then inhaled by the user. However, e-cigarettes can still contain nicotine and some of the chemicals used in regular cigarettes. Since their introduction, they have gained popularity and are widely used as an alternative to smoking traditional tobacco products. They are often used to help people quit smok…

A-fib surgery: Types, risks, and what to expect-Lana Barhum

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Atrial fibrillation is a serious medical condition characteristic of an abnormal heartbeat. The irregular response is due to erratic electrical impulses in the heart's upper chambers.Atrial fibrillation (A-fib) is an irregularity that can result in symptoms, such as heart palpitations, chest pain, and dizziness. However, some people may not experience any symptoms at all. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimate that up to 6.1 million people in the United States may have A-fib. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), there are around 33.5 million people living with A-fib worldwide. There are different treatment options for managing A-fib, including lifestyle changes, medications, and other nonsurgical options. While these treatments may help some people, they may not work for everybody and are not a cure. Doctors may consider surgery if a patient's medications aren't working and when nothing else has helped. How is A-fib treated? Treating A-f…

The effect of EECP on functional exercise capacity and symptom burden in refractory angina-British Journal of Cardiology

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Authors: Noman Ali, Haqeel A Jamil, Mohammad Waleed, Osama Raheem, Peysh Patel, Paul Sainsbury, Christopher Morley

Refractory angina (RA) is characterized by persistent anginal symptoms despite optimal medical therapy and revascularization. Enhanced external counterpulsation (EECP) is a technique that has shown promise in the treatment of this condition but is poorly utilized in the UK. The aim of this study is to assess the effect of EECP on anginal symptoms in patients with RA from a UK center. This retrospective study assessed the effectiveness of EECP at improving exercise capacity, anginal symptom burden and anginal episode frequency using pre- and post-treatment six-minute walk test (6MWT) results, Canadian Cardiovascular Society (CCS) scores, and symptom questionnaires, respectively. Fifty patients with a median age of 67 years (interquartile range [IQR] 14) underwent EECP between 2004 and 2015. The majority had undergone prior revascularization (84%; 42/50) via percutaneous coron…