The mystery disease causing heart attacks in women

March 14, 2016

Source: British Heart Foundation

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Date of publication: February 2016

Publication type: News item

In a nutshell:

Spontaneous coronary artery dissection (SCAD) is a rare yet devastating condition predominantly affecting young, healthy women. SCAD means the layers which form the coronary vessels of the heart tear away from each other. As a result, blood can collect between the vessel layers forming a blood blister which restricts or blocks blood flow to the heart. This leads to a SCAD heart attack.

A ‘normal’ heart attack is caused by build-up of fatty deposits on the vessel walls, which is entirely different to one caused by SCAD. With little known about this disease, research is key to unlocking its secrets.

Thanks to a group of determined SCAD survivors, the first ever UK clinical study, led by BHF-funded researcher Dr David Adlam at Glenfield Hospital and the University of Leicester, launched in 2014. The group, led by SCAD survivor Becks Breslin, found each other through social media and contacted Dr Adlam to help find answers. Together, Dr Adlam and Becks created the SCAD UK and Europe research portal, giving SCAD survivors from near and far an opportunity to share their stories and register as a participant in this pioneering trial. 

 

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


Atrial fibrillation stronger risk factor for women than men

February 8, 2016

Source: British Heart Foundation

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Date of publication: January 2016

Publication type: News item

In a nutshell:

Researchers at the University of Oxford have published new findings that an irregular heartbeat is a stronger risk factor for heart disease in women than it is in men.

The research, which was published in the British Medical Journal, involved looking at studies conducted in more than 4 million patients and found that women with atrial fibrillation (AF), a common and often symptomless irregularity of the heart rhythm, are more likely to suffer future heart attacks and strokes than men.

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


Sugary drinks linked to increased heart failure risk in men

January 5, 2016

Source: NHS Choices

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Date of publication: 2015

Publication type: News item

In a nutshell:  A Swedish study found that men who consumed two or more sugary drinks a day had, on average, a 23% increase in the risk of heart failure.

The study included more than 42,000 Swedish men aged 45 to 79 and data on their estimated daily or weekly intake of sweetened drinks from a food frequency questionnaire completed in 1997.

After a follow-up period of nearly 12 years, men who reported consuming two or more glasses (two 200ml portions) of sweetened beverages a day were 23% more likely to experience heart failure compared to individuals who did not consume any sweetened drinks.

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 Choices


One in five people will develop heart failure. Many cases of heart failure are preventable with healthy lifestyles

June 11, 2015

Source: European Society of Cardiology (ESC)

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Date of publication: May 2015

Publication type: News item

In a nutshell:  One person in five is expected to develop heart failure in developed countries, a disease with no cure but which is largely preventable.  It feels as if every breath in and out is through a narrow straw.  The Heart Failure Association (HFA) of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) is calling for greater public awareness of heart failure symptoms

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: European Society of Cardiology (ESC)


2m study to check if chest scans can cut heart attack risk

April 8, 2015

Source: National Institute for Healthcare Research

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Date of publication: March 2015

Publication type: News item

In a nutshell: A trial funded by the NIHR Health Technology Assessment (HTA) Programme will examine whether giving cardiac CT scans to patients when they arrive at hospital with chest pain is a cost effective way to improve treatment, save lives and cut unnecessary hospital admissions.

In the UK, around 700,000 patients attend hospital emergency departments each year with chest pains, with many being admitted to hospital for further tests.

Further testing often involves patients being given an angiogram, which looks at the blood flow through the heart to identify any obstructions that could pose a heart attack risk. The angiogram accurately identifies coronary artery obstruction, but involves passing a catheter into the heart and therefore carries significant risks.

The trial will use cardiac CT scans to test patients upon admission to hospital, enabling doctors to look at the blood vessels within the heart and detect abnormalities without the risks associated with an angiogram. Cardiac CT scans are also around an eighth of the cost of an angiogram.

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: National Institute for Healthcare Research


Obesity and fitness: The relation between obesity, cardiorespiratory fitness and mortality

December 11, 2014

Source: Public Health England

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Date of publication: December 2014

Publication type: Briefing paper

In a nutshell: This paper presents recent review-level evidence behind the relation between obesity, cardiovascular fitness and mortality, and briefly explores the main public health implications.

Length of publication: 10 pages

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: UK Health Forum


New recommendations for overweight patients with high risk of heart disease

October 8, 2014

Source: Annals of Internal Medicine

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Date of publication: August 2014

Publication type: Online article

In a nutshell: Researchers from the United States Preventive Services Task Force have produced new recommendations for overweight patients who are at risk of heart disease. The key recommendation is that those at risk should be sent to “intensive behavioural counselling” to improve their diet and/or exercise plan. In the study the researchers found counselling was the most effective method of reducing a persons weight and reducing their risk of developing heart disease.  

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: UK Health Forum