CARDIOVASCULAR HORIZON SCANNING Volume 11 Issue 11/12

November 19, 2019

Smokers who switch to vaping could soon ‘have healthier hearts’

November 19, 2019

Source: NHS –Behind the Headlines

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Date of publication: November 2019

Publication type: News item

In a nutshell: “Smokers can improve the health of their hearts within weeks of switching to e-cigarettes, the largest trial of its kind shows”

The number of people using e-cigarettes, or vaping, has grown rapidly over the past decade and they have helped many people to give up smoking cigarettes. However, as e-cigarettes have only been available for a relatively short time, we’re still building evidence on their health effects – both positive and negative. In this new Scottish study researchers recruited 115 smokers, about two-thirds of whom were willing to switch to e-cigarettes while a third continued to smoke. After a month researchers found the arteries of those who switched to e-cigarettes were now better at widening (dilating) when there was an increased blood flow. This ability of the arteries to remain pliable and respond to changes in blood flow is known as vascular function. Poor vascular function is a risk factor for cardiovascular diseases, such as a heart attack.

Length of publication: 1 webpage

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library.

Acknowledgement:   NHS –Behind the Headlines


Loneliness may increase death risk in people with heart conditions

November 19, 2019

Source: NHS –Behind the Headlines

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Date of publication: November 2019

Publication type: News item

In a nutshell: “Lonely heart patients at ‘increased risk of dying’ after leaving hospital,” reports The Independent. A survey of people with heart diseases discharged from hospitals in Denmark found that those who said they felt lonely were more likely to report feeling depressed and anxious, report a lower quality of life and were almost 3 times more likely to have died within a year of being discharged. Loneliness is not the same as living alone, however. People in the study who said they lived alone were less likely to experience anxiety, and no more likely to have died than people who lived with others. The survey adds to evidence from previous studies drawing a link between loneliness, social isolation and poor outcomes for people with heart disease. The researchers say doctors should consider loneliness as part of their clinical risk assessment when treating heart patients.

Length of publication: 1 webpage

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library.

Acknowledgement:   NHS –Behind the Headlines


Air pollution spikes cause hundreds more cardiac arrests and strokes in the UK

November 19, 2019

Source: British Heart Foundation

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Date of publication: October 2019

Publication type: News item

In a nutshell: Hundreds of cardiac arrests and strokes in the UK are likely to be caused by sudden spikes in air pollution, according to new research by a team at King’s College London. The evidence suggests that days when pollutants were in the top half of the annual range, there were on average an extra 124 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests. In addition, across the nine cities where data were collected, there were an average of 231 additional hospital admissions due to stroke on these same days.

Length of publication: 1 webpage

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library.

Acknowledgement:   British Heart Foundation


Heart failure hospital admissions rise by a third in five years

November 19, 2019

Source: British Heart Foundation

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Date of publication: November 2019

Publication type: Statistics

In a nutshell: Heart failure admissions have reached record levels in England, rising from 65,025 in 2013/14 to 86,474 in 2018/19 – a 33 per cent increase. This is three times as fast as all other hospital admissions, which have risen by 11 per cent in the same period. The rise in hospital admissions is reflective of increasing numbers of people living with heart failure in the UK. It’s estimated that around 920,000 people have the condition and it’s placing a greater burden on the health service than the four most common cancers combined. With heart failure patients staying in hospital for around 10 days – double the average of five days for all diagnoses – this is putting immense pressure on the NHS.

Length of publication: 1 webpage

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library.

Acknowledgement:   British Heart Foundation


Pacemaker study to help heart patients avoid hospital

November 19, 2019

Source: British Heart Foundation

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Date of publication: November 2019

Publication type: Research

In a nutshell: A study at The University of Manchester which will analyse heart patients’ activity levels through their pacemakers, to determine which people are at the highest risk of frailty and help them avoid long hospital stays.

Length of publication: 1 webpage

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library.

Acknowledgement: British Heart Foundation


Children become less active each year of primary school

November 19, 2019

Source: British Heart Foundation

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Date of publication: November 2019

Publication type: News item

In a nutshell: A new study shows that by age 11, children are doing more than an hour less of physical activity a week than at age 6.   The study revealed a dramatic drop in children’s physical activity levels by the time they finish primary school. Monitoring the behaviour of more than 2,000 children from 57 schools across South West England during primary school, it found children became 17 minutes less active per week every year. The UK Chief Medical Officers recommend that children do an hour of MVPA every day. This study found that 61 per cent of children in Year 1 did at least an hour of MVPA per day, but by Year 6, only 41 per cent achieved the target. The drop was particularly steep for girls, who fell from 54 to 28 per cent by the time they finished primary school.  

Length of publication: 1 webpage

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library.

Acknowledgement:   British Heart Foundation