Heart (2022)

5th September 2022.
Infective endocarditis, a life threatening infection of the valves inside the heart, is a dreaded condition among intravenous drug abusers. It requires atleast 6 weeks of intravenous antibiotics. The American Heart Association has recently published its revised guidelines for the management of these patients in its flagship journal Circulation

28th August 2022.
The American Heart Association has recently published its most comprehensive statement on the common symptoms of cardiovascular disease and their implications on health and mortality.

21st August 2022.
“The Jackson heart study” (conducted at the dept. of cardiovascular medicine at the Mayo Clinic), recently published in the Journal of the American Heart Association has revealed some interesting findings on the association between religiosity / spirituality and cardiovascular health in African American Christians. They were also found to be more likely to adhere to the “AHA’s Life’s Simple 7” practices to maintain good cardiovascular health. LS7 consists of completely cigarette smoking, maintaining an acceptable body weight, good control of blood sugars, good control of blood pressure, good control of cholesterol, atleast 150 minutes of moderate intensity physical inactivity per week, and a heart friendly diet. More research is needed to determine if these beneficial cardiovascular effects also applies to other ethnic groups and other religions

14th August 2022.
Only 1 in 5 adult Americans have optimal cardiovascular health according to new research published in the flagship journal of the American Heart Association “Circulation”. Read more!

7th August 2022.
In a recently published landmark study by the European Society of Cardiology on hypertension (high blood pressure) in childhood, the authors concluded that 9 out of 10 children with high blood pressure were physically inactive, had excess salt and excess sugar in their diet. None of these risk factors need medications and can be corrected by just lifestyle modifications alone!

28th July 2022.
Are you getting less than 7 hours of quality sleep at night? Do you nap for more than 30 min during the day? You may be at a high risk of cardiovascular disease in the future according to a recent publication in the Journal of the American Heart Association. Read more.

21st July 2022.
Cardiovascular physicians need to be worried about soil pollution due to contamination with pesticides and heavy metals after this piece of insightful research published recently in the European Journal of Cardiology.

14th July 2022.
150 minutes may not be quiet enough! Needs to be doubled or quadrupled for maximum benefits! The recommended duration of physical activity for cardiac health by the American Heart Association is 150 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity per week (30 min a day, 5 days a week). This has been the recommendation for many years until recently. According to new research published in the flagship journal of the American Heart Association “Circulation”, though 150 minutes does offer some cardiovascular protection, the maximum benefits from exercise accrue when that number is doubled to 300 minutes or better quadrupled to 600 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity per week. For easy quantification the AHA has graded the intensity of exercise by the “talk test”. Moderate exercise / activity is defined as the level of intensity that allows a person to talk but not sing during the exercise. Vigorous physical activity is defined as that that intensity of physical activity during which the person cannot speak more than a few words continuously. Athletes combine moderate and vigorous levels of physical activity alternatively (also called high intensity interval training – HIIT) for further enhancing the cardioprotective effects.

7th July 2022.
Do you add extra salt to your food on the dining table? you are at a greater risk of cardiovascular disease according to recent research published in the European Journal of Cardiology. Read more.

28th June 2022.
COVID-19 vaccination is not associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular complications in patients with pre-existing cardiovascular disease, according to a large study published in “Cardiovascular Research”, a journal of the European Society of Cardiology. Read more.

21st June 2022.
Gut microflora may influence the efficacy of blood pressure lowering medications according to recent research published in the AHA flagship journal Hypertension. Coprococcus Comis is a normal gut microbe in rats. The study found that this microbe had the potential to deactivate ACEI drugs and could thus render them less effective. More research is needed in humans but this study could be a pointer in the right direction in finding appropriate solutions for “resistent hypertensives” (a group of people whose blood pressure is difficult to control despite adequate antihypertensive medications)

14th June 2022.
Heart patients who are unvaccinated for COVID 19 are 3 times more likely to die from a COVID 19 infection compared to fully vaccinated and boosted patients with cardiac failure according to a recently published study in the journal of cardiac failure. Their hospitalization for management of decompensated heart failure are also significantly less. Read more.

7th June 2022.
Patients with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) are very prone to future cardiovascular complications according to recent research. Read more.

28th May 2022.
Childhood obesity, unhealthy food habits and a sedentary lifestyle has lead to a sharp spike in the prevalence of hypertension (high blood pressure) in children and young adults today. A 24hr continuous ambulatory blood pressure monitoring is now the minimum standard of care. The AHA has recently published its updated guidelines on 24hr ambulatory blood pressure monitoring in children and young adults in the Journal of the American Heart Association. Read the guidelines here.

21st May 2022.
The occurrence of hypertension (high blood pressure) during pregnancy could lead to a significantly higher risk (upto 63%) of cardiovascular events later in life according to recent research published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

14th May 2022.
The joint guidelines by the American Heart Association, American College of Cardiology, Heart Failure Society of America for the Management of Heart Failure has been recently published in the journal Circulation.

7th May 2022.
Applying artificial intelligence to an Apple Watch ECG can reliably identify left ventricular dysfunction (heart failure) according to researchers at the Mayo Clinic. LV dysfunction affects approximately 9% of adults above the age of 60 years. ECG features of possible heart failure include prolonged QRS duration, delayed intrinsicoid deflection, the hump sign of ST-T, LBBB, LVH, LAD. An analysis of these findings along with application of AI can reliably predict LV dysfunction according to the authors of the study.

28th April 2022.
Galectin 3 is a reliable biomarker for inflammation and fibrosis. High levels of Galectin 3 have been found in obese patients. high levels of Galectin 3 and obesity are associated with a high risk of heart failure according to recent research published in the Journal of the American Heart Association.

21st April 2022.
nafldThe amount of fat in and around your liver may be an indirect marker of your risks of adverse cardiovascular events in the future according to a recent scientific statement of the American Heart Association. Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD) is a condition which causes accumulation of fat in and around the liver. This excess fat then leads to inflammation, scarring and finally liver failure if left untreated for a long time. The severity of NAFLD is also an indirect marker for adverse cardiovascular events in the future according to a recent scientific statement of the AHA.

14th April 2022.
fitbit AF appFitbit is a popular manufacturer of wearables that track cardiovascular and general fitness levels. The company has recently received FDA approval for for its photoplethysmography feature, the inbuilt algorithm and the associated app for its ability to accurately diagnose atrial fibrillation in adults.  Atrial fibrillation is one of the most common heart rhythm disorders in adults and can result in a variety of complications including strokes if left untreated.

7th April 2022
The American Heart Association has recently published a comprehensive and up to date review of the cardiovascular manifestations of COVID 19 infection in children and young adults. Read the review here.

28th March 2022
The American College of Cardiology has recently published a comprehensive statement on the Cardiovascular sequelae of COVID19.

21st March 2022
Patients with heart failure are often told to restrict their fluid intake to prevent worsening of their heart failure. While this may be true, recent research, published in the European Heart Journal also suggests that dehydration, indicated by a serum NA+ level of >>143mEq/Lit may also be just as deleterious. Both dehydration and fluid overload are best avoided in patients with heart failure.

14th March 2022
The wearable medical device market will exceed USD 60 billion in a decade from now after it is projected to grow at an impressive 13% CAGR. Technology and health awareness has driven this change. Read more.

7th March 2022.
Do not wait for symptoms to appear before seeking treatment if you have a narrowing (stenosis) of the Aortic Valve. People who have been diagnosed to have severe aortic valve stenosis who do not have symptoms will still benefit from, early aortic valve replacement surgery  because the procedure reduces the risk of death, myocardial ischemia, stroke and cardiac failure, according to the AVATAR (Aortic Valve Replacement Versus Conservative Treatment in Asymptomatic Severe Aortic Stenosis) trial results which were presented at the Scientific sessions of the American Heart Association and published in its journal “Circulation” recently.

28th February 2022.
cardiac anaesthesiologistCardiovascular  anaesthesiologists often have to work long hours in the operating room. This sometimes leads to chronic fatigue and “physician burn out”. In an attempt to regulate the working hours of anaesthesiologists some  hospitals have authorized a second anaesthesiologist to take over the case after the working hours of the previous anaesthesiologist are over. In an interesting bit of research recently published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, it was found that when a case was handed over to a second anaesthesiologist, both the 30day mortality and the 1 year mortality were significantly higher than if the case was handled by the same anaesthesiologist from start to finish. It is a delicate balance between maintaining quality of care and minimising physician burnout and chronic fatigue among health care professionals.

21st February 2022.
The most comprehensive review of the long term cardiovascular sequelae  of the COVID 19 infection has been recently published.

14th February 2022.
Even a mild COVID 19 illness must be taken seriously as major cardiac complications are known to to occur upto a year after the infection according to recent research published in the journal “Nature”.

7th February 2022
What happens when 2 highly respected professional scientific bodies disagree in public with each others’ recommendations on a particular medical issue? What kind of a signal does it send out to practicing medical professionals across the world? Should such differences be discussed thread bare behind closed doors and a common consensus be arrived at which should then be made public as a consensus statement?

Well, such a public disagreement occurred recently when the President of the American Society of Nuclear Cardiology disagreed in public (on video) with the American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Association guidelines on the evaluation and diagnosis of chest pain.

The ACC / AHA guidelines on the evaluation and diagnosis of chest pain.

The public disagreement (on video) by Dr Dennis Calnon, President of the American Society of Nuclear Cardiology.

28th January 2022.
couch potatoBinge watching Television (>>4 hrs /day) is associated with a 35% increase in the incidence of blood clots in the legs (Venous Thromboembolism – VTE) according to recent research published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology. These blood clots could travel up into the right side of the heart and then onward into the lungs and cause life threatening blockages of branches of the pulmonary arteries.

21st January 2022.
The belief that moderate consumption of alcohol is good for the heart has been proven to be false according to recent research published by the World Heart Federation. Even a small amount of alcohol could induce atrial fibrillation (a very common heart rhythm disorder) with potentially catastrophic consequences.

14th January 2022.
The ACC / AHA guidelines for the management of heart failure have been recently updated and published. Read more.

7th January 2022
Recent guidelines on the evaluation and diagnosis of chest pain were recently published jointly by the American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Association. Read the guidelines here.

1st January 2022
inclisiranThe U.S. Food and Drug Administration has cleared Inclisiran (Leqvio) manufactured by Novartis to lower low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) with just two injections a year, after an initial loading dose and a second booster after three months. This  new and promising drug provides sustained LDL-C reduction of up to 52% vs placebo according to Vas Narasimhan the CEO of Novartis. Currently approximately 16 million Americans are on Statins to lower their LDL cholesterol levels. Inclisiran reduces LDL-C levels in the blood by enhancing the ability of the liver to prevent the production of a protein that plays a key role in keeping circulating cholesterol levels high. Inclisiran will be available for clinical use from mid January 2022. Read more. 


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