Tag Archives: cardiovascular disease

Anginal Anarchy

An article in a medical newsletter I regularly receive Not so Fast: How to Avoid Bias Toward Stents in Managing SIHD describes the unnecessary revascularization of coronary arteries in patients with many patients with SIHD (stable ischemic heart disease). The author of the piece is, of all things, an interventional cardiologist. She quotes several studies….


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Prophylactic Aspirin in Healthy Elderly Adults

Three studies, published online on Sept 16, 2018 by the New England Journal of Medicine, examine the effect  of prophylactic aspirin in healthy elderly patients. The subjects received 100 mg of aspirin daily or a placebo for five years. Trial participants were community-dwelling men and women from Australia and the United States who were 70 years of…


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World Health Organization to Issue New Dietary Recommendations

The WHO has issued draft recommendations that advise less consumption of saturated fats and trans fats. “Dietary saturated fatty acids and trans-fatty acids are of particular concern because high levels of intake are correlated with increased risk of cardiovascular diseases,” Dr. Francesco Branca, Director of WHO’s Department of Nutrition for Health and Development, told reporters….


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The Salinity Obsession

Many physicians and those charged with regulating the nation’s health have been obsessed with salt since Lot’s wife was transformed into a pillar of the stuff. On March 7, 2018  the JAMA published online a well performed study of sodium intake, the investigators used 24 hour urinary sodium excretion as a marker of intake, which documents…


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New Blood Pressure Guidelines – Think First

The press with an assist from the American College of Cardiology is trying to drive the American public crazier than it usually is. Here’s a quotation typical of those floating around the media: “Nearly half of Americans have high blood pressure under the new guidelines issued Monday by heart organizations and the medical community. The…


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More Uncertainty about Cholesterol and Cardiovascular Disease

Cholesterol and lipid metabolism used to simple. There was good (HDL) cholesterol and bad (LDL) cholesterol. Eat a diet low in cholesterol and fat and your blood vessels will be as open as a new straw. On the basis of very little solid scientific information a litany of assumptions was issued by both the medical…


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Statins For the Primary Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease

The use of statins (drugs which lower blood cholesterol) for the primary prevention of CV disease has been controversial since the drugs became available almost 30 years ago. Primary prevention is the prevention of a disease which the patient does not have, eg a stroke or a heart attack. Secondary prevention is the prevention of…


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In Outer Space

The popular press has picked up on a story about cosmic rays and cardiovascular disease in astronauts who landed on the moon. The Voice of America has a particularly breathless account of a study, Apollo Lunar Astronauts Show Higher Cardiovascular Disease Mortality: Possible Deep Space Radiation Effects on the Vascular Endothelium, published in the online…


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Salt, Science, and Politics

Salt is in the news again. Thomas Frieden the head of the CDC published an article in the JAMA innocuously titled Sodium Reduction—Saving Lives by Putting Choice Into Consumers’ Hands. It more closely resembles propaganda than science. It argues that reducing dietary sodium intake to 1200 mg/day or less will lower the incidence of hypertension…


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Salt and More Salt

The August 14, 2014 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine contains three papers on salt intake and health. The third of these is so layered with assumptions that I won’t discuss it. I have previously written about recommendations for optimum dietary intake of salt. In 2011 the American Society of Nephrology endorsed guidelines…


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