CVD patient watch
Goodbye, Michael Jackson
Michael Jackson, King of Pop, was pronounced dead at the UCLA Medical Center on Thursday, June 25. He was reported to have suffered from cardiac arrest. The real cause of death is not known. Jackson was preparing for a comeback concert due to start next month. The 50-year old singer leaves behind three children – sons Prince Michael 7, and Michael Joseph Jackson Jr., 12, and daughter Paris Michael Katherine, 11. Next week, I’ll tackle the topic “What can cause sudden cardiac arrest?”
CVD innovation watch
New low-cost, solar-powered BP device for developing countries
Italian scientists have been testing A new, low-cost, solar-powered blood-pressure-monitoring device. The Omron M1 Plus is meant for use in low-income countries and has been tested in urban and rural settings. Accoridng to Dr Michael Alderman of Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, NY: “This is very exciting. There are a billion people with hypertension-soon to be a billion and a half. Most of those people are living in low-resource countries, where the ability to intervene is going to be dependent upon identifying patients, so this is a critical tool.”
Heart study questions diabetes drugs
Why do some drugs that are effective against certain types of diseases lead to heart failure? Swiss researchers may have identified the molecular pathway that explains why the diabetes drugs thiazolidinediones (TZDs) increase the risk of heart failure. The most well-known and controversial TZD is Avandia (rosiglitazone). It seems that TZDs, activate PPAR-Y, a molecule that may play a key role in heart failure.
CVD web watch
CDC Introduces New Website to Help Employers Combat Obesity and Reduce Health-Related Costs
On Thursday, June 25, the CDC introduced LEANWorks!, a website to help employers and businesses address onesity in the workplace. LEAN stands for Leading Employees to Activity and Nutrition. The site privdes a wide range of resources including an obesity cost calculator and tips for setting up a workplace obesity prevention program. More on LeanWorks in Battling Obesity next week.
CVD drug watch
The European Medicines Agency (EMEA) issued a warning on possible interaction between clopidogrel and proton-pump inhibitors (PPIs). Clopidogrel (Plavix, Sanofi-Aventis/Bristol-Myers Squibb) is an anti-platelet agent indicated for the prevention of blood clots in cerebrovascular disorders. PPIs are indicated for stomach problems such as ulcers, gastroesophageal reflux, and dyspepsia. Since heartburn and stomach ulcers are common side effects of clopidogrel, many users of this drug also use PPI. Recent studies report that the two drugs may interact and interefere with the efficacy of clopidogrel.