Heart(y) News: Wear Red Today, 4 February

February 4, 2011 by  

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Are you ready to paint the town red today? Or at least wear something red. I’m planning to for 2 special reasons. It’s National Wear Red Day in the US and many parts of the world. And I’m attending a Chinese New Year’s party tonight. Red symbolizes the color of the heart. In many Asian cultures, red is also the symbol of life, love, luck and happiness. Happy New Year!

NIH researchers identify genetic cause of new vascular disease
ACDC is not your favourite rock band but stands for arterial calcification due to CD73 deficiency. It is rare vascular disease not previously described in medical literature. Till now. It is characterized by “progressive and painful arterial calcification affecting the lower extremities”, but does not affect the coronary arteries. Researchers at the National Institutes of Health’s Undiagnosed Diseases Program (UDP) has now identified the gene that causes the disease.

Walk faster, live longer
How long do you think you will live? You can tell by how fast you walk. This is according to a meta-analysis  by researchers at the University of Pittsburgh of nine studies involving about 35,000 people aged 65 and older.
“The reason that there’s a relationship between walking speed and longevity is because your walking speed is a very simple reflection of how well many of your body systems are doing”, according to one of the researchers.

30 minutes of brisk walking each is recommend for our health.

Most Americans with High Blood Pressure and High Cholesterol at Unnecessary Risk for Heart Attack and Stroke
2 out of 3 adult Americans have high cholesterol levels that are not managed properly. In addition, about 50% have hypertension that is also not being treated effectively. This despite the fact that a wide range of treatments for dyslipidemia and hypertension are available and not that expensive too. This is according to the latest Vital Signs report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). They key figures are given below:

Current cost estimates for  cardviovascular treatment in terms of direct medical costs is $300 billion each year. This expenditure can triple by 2030, according to experts, unless we do something right now.

Mechanical valves beat bioprostheses in younger patients: 10-year study
Mechanical or biologics? This is a question that patients needing valve replacement have to consider. A 10-year Swiss study showed that those who opt for mechanical valves actually tend to live longer despite a lifetime burden of taking anticoagulation agents.

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