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Updated: 9 min 17 sec ago

Owning a dog may be good for your heart

7 hours 26 min ago
People who own dogs, either as a single individual or within a family, showed lower risk of cardiovascular death in a Swedish nationwide study.
“We show that dog ownership is associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease in single households and with a reduced risk of cardiovascular and all-cause death in the general population,” the researchers wrote. “Taken together, we believe our longitudinal population-wide design provides the most robust evidence so far of a link between dog ownership and health outcomes.”
The study included Swedish residents aged 40 to 80

RE-DUAL PCI: Dual therapy beneficial in all subgroups in PCI with AF

8 hours 29 min ago
ANAHEIM, Calif. — Patients with atrial fibrillation who underwent PCI and were treated with dual therapy — dabigatran plus a P2Y12 inhibitor — had consistent benefits across subgroups compared with those treated with triple therapy — warfarin plus a P2Y12 inhibitor plus aspirin.
Subgroups included patients who received either drug-eluting or bare-metal stents, those with and without ACS and those with clopidogrel or ticagrelor (Brilinta, AstraZeneca) as their P2Y12 inhibitor.
Jonas Oldgren, head of Uppsala Clinical Research Center and associate professor at the

Ralinepag improves pulmonary vascular resistance in PAH

10 hours 37 min ago
Patients with pulmonary artery hypertension who were treated with ralinepag in addition to single or dual background therapy had improved pulmonary vascular resistance compared with those treated with placebo, according to data presented at the CHEST annual meeting.
“It was ... a clinically meaningful effect that portends an improvement through something that would correspond in most cases with an improvement in terms of their symptoms, but more importantly in terms of their long-term outcomes,” Vallerie V. McLaughlin, MD, professor at University of Michigan Medical School in Ann

Experts: Hypertension guideline sound, but implementation challenges ahead

11 hours 41 min ago
ANAHEIM, Calif. — Hypertension experts interviewed by Cardiology Today praised the new American Heart Association/American College of Cardiology hypertension guideline as accurately reflecting current science, but expressed concern about ease of implementation.

The guideline changed the definition of hypertension to systolic BP 130 mm Hg or higher or diastolic BP 80 mm Hg or higher, which will lead to a new diagnosis in more than 30 million U.S. adults, and recommended those thresholds be treatment targets for most adults. It also emphasizes lifestyle modification and suggests treatment

HOPE-Duchenne: Cell therapy shows promise for treating Duchenne cardiomyopathy

13 hours 47 min ago
ANAHEIM, Calif. — Cardiosphere-derived cells to treat patients with cardiomyopathy caused by Duchenne muscular dystrophy was safe and well-tolerated, according to data presented at American Heart Association Scientific Sessions.
Ronald G. Victor, MD, director of the Hypertension Center, associate director of the Heart Institute for Translational Research, professor of medicine and Burns and Allen Chair in Cardiology Research at Cedars-Sinai, and colleagues analyzed data from 25 patients with Duchenne muscular dystrophy aged 12 to 22 years on a stable steroid regimen, left ventricular

REDUCE LAP-HF: Interatrial shunt device lowers left atrial pressure in HFpEF

14 hours 1 min ago
ANAHEIM, Calif. — A transcatheter interatrial shunt device reduced pulmonary capillary wedge pressure during exercise in people with HF and preserved ejection fraction, according to data from the REDUCE LAP-HF I study.
Results from the study were presented at the American Heart Association Scientific Sessions.
“Patients with HFpEF are known to have left ventricular diastolic dysfunction. These abnormalities result in elevated [left atrial] pressure and volume overload with subsequent elevation in pulmonary venous pressures, particularly during exertion, resulting in symptoms of

SLE linked with increased atherosclerotic risk in early disease stages

15 hours 35 min ago
According to findings, systemic lupus erythematosus appears to increase atherosclerotic risk in its early phase, while traditional risk factors have a greater impact on atherosclerosis during the later stages of SLE.
In the study, researchers evaluated 210 women with SLE and 138 healthy controls who were enrolled in the Toronto Risk Factor Study. The Toronto Risk Factor Study began in 1998 and enrolled 250 women with SLE and 250 age-matched, healthy female controls from a family practice clinic. The present study analyzed the initial cohort 15 years later for the incidence of atherosclerotic

Discontinuation of postmenopausal hormone therapy elevates cardiac, stroke death risk

Thu, 2017-11-16 16:56
In the first year after discontinuation of postmenopausal hormone therapy, the risk for cardiac and stroke death increases, particularly among women aged younger than 60 years, according to findings published in Menopause.
“Associations between the long-term use of postmenopausal hormone therapy and risks of cardiovascular diseases have been studied for decades. The data are not uniform, perhaps partly due to differences in hormone therapy regimens and study populations,” Minttu M. Venetkoski, MD, from the department of obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Helsinki and

FDA to examine heart-related deaths associated with febuxostat

Thu, 2017-11-16 13:52
The FDA announced that preliminary data from a safety trial demonstrate that, compared with allopurinol, febuxostat is linked to an increased risk for heart-related death. The FDA will examine the final results of the study once they are available, according to a press release.
The febuxostat label currently contains a warning and precaution regarding cardiovascular events.
Before FDA approval in 2009, data from clinical trials of febuxostat (Uloric, Takeda Pharmaceuticals) demonstrated a higher rate of myocardial infarction, stroke and heart-related death associated with the drug. Based on

PROPEL: Cell therapy does not boost walking performance in PAD

Thu, 2017-11-16 12:21
ANAHEIM, Calif. — In patients with peripheral artery disease in the PROPEL trial, granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor, either alone or in combination with exercise, did not improve 6-minute walk distance.
Granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor, or GM-CSF, increases circulating endothelial progenitor cells, which have been previously associated with angiogenesis in humans, according to Mary M. McDermott, MD, the Jeremiah Stamler Professor and professor of medicine at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago.
“Because exercise-induced

SWEDEHEART: New treatments improved survival, reduced new events in non-STEMI

Thu, 2017-11-16 11:49
ANAHEIM, Calif. — The use of new evidence-based treatments such as PCI led to improved long-term survival and a reduction in HF and new ischemic events in patients who were admitted to the hospital for a non-STEMI during the past 20 years, according to data presented at the American Heart Association Scientific Sessions.
Karolina Szummer, MD, PhD, of the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, and colleagues analyzed data from 205,693 patients with non-STEMI who were registered in the SWEDEHEART registry between 1995 and 2014. Treatments, outcomes and patient characteristics were

Gluten-free diet’s effect on cardiovascular risk unclear

Thu, 2017-11-16 11:23
A systematic review showed no clear evidence that a gluten-free diet has an overall negative impact on cardiovascular risks in patients with celiac disease.
While the results were inconsistent across studies, and researchers did observe alterations in some cardiovascular risk factors, they concluded the data do not support adopting a gluten-free diet for cardiovascular health in individuals without celiac disease.
“One of the main reasons people alter their diet in general is to modify their long-term cardiovascular risk ... and many people without celiac disease are adopting the

Gottlieb sees ‘watershed opportunity’ to shape future of FDA’s regulatory process

Thu, 2017-11-16 11:21
Scott Gottlieb
WASHINGTON — When diagnosed with Hodgkin lymphoma at the age of 33 years, FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, MD, was told he had a 90% chance of survival.
“Ninety percent doesn’t sound so good if it’s you,” Gottlieb, now 44, told HemOnc Today following a keynote presentation at the Friends of Cancer Research Annual Meeting. “So, to me, that 10% sounded pretty grim.”
Gottlieb — the FDA’s 23rd commissioner — pored over “stacks of studies” in an effort to find available therapy that might improve his chances of

Intensive treatment of periodontitis may reduce BP levels

Thu, 2017-11-16 10:56
ANAHEIM, Calif. — Patients with prehypertension who received intensive care for moderate to severe periodontitis had reduced systolic and diastolic BP compared with those who received standard treatment, according to data presented at American Heart Association Scientific Sessions. Jun Tao, MD, PhD, chief of the department of hypertension and vascular disease and director of the Institute of Geriatrics Research at First Affiliated Hospital of Sun Yat-sen University in Guangzhou, China, told Cardiology Today. “Our present investigation is the first proof-of-concept study to

Burnout common in cardiologists, especially women

Thu, 2017-11-16 10:44
ANAHEIM, Calif. — In a recent survey, more than one-quarter of U.S. cardiologists reported burnout, with burnout being 29% likely among women, researchers reported at the American Heart Association Scientific Sessions.
The data come from the American College of Cardiology’s 2015 Professional Life Survey. Laxmi Mehta, MD, FACC, FAHA, and colleagues compared responses to the validated “Mini Z” burnout assessment with broader questions about career satisfaction and family responsibilities. In total, 2,313 U.S. cardiologists completed the 2015 survey, of whom 964 were

AMA adopts new strategy for genetic tests, therapeutics

Wed, 2017-11-15 15:35
AMA recently voted to advance the development of a comprehensive strategy that allows more consistent coverage of genomic and genetic tests and precision medicine, a move intended to enhance patient access to useful new genetic tests and therapeutics that have clinical impact.
“Precision medicine tests, technologies and therapeutics are increasingly being adopted into clinical practice as evidence of their effectiveness grows,” AMA Board Member William E. Kobler, MD, said in a press release. “However, many patients do not have access to precision medicine because most public

TNT-POAF: Botulinum toxin may reduce postoperative AF

Wed, 2017-11-15 12:05
ANAHEIM, Calif. — Epicardial fat pad injections of botulinum toxin may be a safe way to reduce postoperative atrial fibrillation without increasing adverse events after cardiac surgery, according to the results of the TNT-POAF study presented at the American Heart Association Scientific Sessions.
“Postoperative AF is the most common complication after cardiac surgery and is unfortunately one that is associated with postoperative morbidity, increased length of stay in the ICU in the hospital and short and long-term mortality,” Nathan H. Waldron, MD, MHSc, from Duke University

E-cigarette use common among current cigarette smokers

Wed, 2017-11-15 09:00
ANAHEIM, Calif. — More than two-thirds of adult electronic cigarette users in the United States are current cigarette smokers, researchers reported at the American Heart Association Scientific Sessions.
“Contrary to the common popular belief that e-cigarettes help people to quit smoking, our study findings from a representative sample of the adult U.S. population showed that most of the adult e-cigarette users were also smoking cigarettes, ie, dual users,” Rana M. Jaber, PhD, from Baptist Health South Florida in Miami, told Cardiology Today.
Jaber and colleagues analyzed 5,423

In older women, sleep debt may be harmful to CV health

Wed, 2017-11-15 09:00
ANAHEIM, Calif. — Sleep debt was associated with lower odds of ideal CV health in older women, according to a presentation at the American Heart Association Scientific Sessions.
“We were interested in the relationship between adverse experiences and health, particularly cardiovascular health,” Michelle A. Albert, MD, MPH, professor of medicine and director of the Center for the Study of Adversity and Cardiovascular Disease (NURTURE Center) at the University of California, San Francisco, told Cardiology Today. “We wanted to evaluate if sleep debt, which is the difference

Telepharmacy intervention yields modest effect on medication adherence among patients with cardiometabolic diseases

Wed, 2017-11-15 09:00
ANAHEIM, Calif. — Implementation of a personalized telepharmacy intervention improved medication adherence but did not affect measures of disease control including LDL cholesterol, BP and HbA1c among patients with chronic cardiometabolic diseases, according to data from the STIC2IT trial.
“Half of patients with cardiometabolic conditions, such as heart disease, diabetes, hypertension and high cholesterol, do not adhere to their prescribed medications. This leads to adverse clinical consequences and a tremendous amount of preventable health spending in the U.S. every year,”