Warning Signs of a Heart Attack!


Here are signs that can mean a heart attack is happening:


Chest discomfort. Most heart attacks involve discomfort in the center of the chest that lasts more than a few minutes, or that goes away and comes back. It can feel like uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain.

Discomfort in other areas of the upper body. Symptoms can include pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach.

Shortness of breath with or without chest discomfort.

Other signs may include breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness.


Learn the signs, but remember this: Even if you’re not sure it’s a heart attack, have it checked out (tell a doctor about your symptoms).

Minutes matter! Fast action can save lives — maybe your own. Don’t wait more than five minutes to call 9-1-1 or your emergency response number.

Calling 9-1-1 is almost always the fastest way to get lifesaving treatment. Emergency medical services (EMS) staff can begin treatment when they arrive — up to an hour sooner than if someone gets to the hospital by car. EMS staff are also trained to revive someone whose heart has stopped. Patients with chest pain who arrive by ambulance usually receive faster treatment at the hospital, too. It is best to call EMS for rapid transport to the emergency room

via Warning Signs of a Heart Attack.

Awareness of prediabetes in the US is low!


According to the latest statistics, about one in three US adults 20 years and older have prediabetes, but only 11% are aware of their status.

The finding is reported in the March 22, 2013 issue of Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

Awareness of prediabetes was low, “regardless of education level, income level, coverage by health insurance or other kind of healthcare plan, or healthcare use,”

During 2005-2006, only 7% of US adults were aware that they had prediabetes. In this report, Li and colleagues sought to determine whether this awareness had increased in 2009-2010.


The researchers identified 2603 participants with prediabetes, as defined as fasting plasma glucose (FPG) 100 to 125 mg/dL or glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) of 5.7% to 6.4%.

They compared the prevalence of prediabetes awareness across a variety of factors, including age, race or ethnicity, sex, education level, poverty-to-income ratio, access to healthcare, having health insurance or other healthcare coverage at the time of interview, number of doctor visits in the past year, and having a usual source of healthcare such as a doctor’s office or health clinic.


The analysis showed that the percentage of persons with prediabetes who were aware of their status was  slightly higher (11%) in 2009-2010 than it was in 2005-2006 (p=0.04), although the awareness remained low.


The prevalence of type 2 diabetes is increasing in the US and that the disease can be prevented or delayed among those at high risk “by modest weight loss, good nutritional practices, and increased physical activity.”

The note concludes by calling for improved identification and awareness of prediabetes. These are “critical first steps to encourage those with prediabetes to make healthy lifestyle changes or to enroll in evidence-based, lifestyle-change programs aimed at preventing type 2 diabetes.”

via Awareness of prediabetes in the US is low | theheart.org.

Depression negates heart-healthy behaviors

Untreated symptoms of depression can negate (the anti-inflammatory) benefits typically associated with physical activity and light to moderate alcohol consumption, new research suggests.


Based on measurements of the cardiometabolic risk marker C-reactive protein (CRP), the study “points to a new role for depression in addition to its direct impact on physical and mental health,” said lead author Dr Edward C Suarez (Duke University School of Medicine, Durham, NC).


The results suggest that depressive symptoms can “minimize the health effects of what many Americans are doing to reduce our risk for heart disease and type 2 diabetes—exercise more and adopt a Mediterranean-type diet that includes light to moderate alcohol consumption,” Suarez said.

The study was published online March 26, 2013 in Brain, Behavior, and Immunity.


Light to moderate alcohol intake and leisure-time physical activity are independently associated with lower levels of CRP, whereas depression has been associated with elevated CRP.


The researchers found that individuals who were physically active generally had lower levels of CRP, with the exception of those with depressive symptoms (4.5% of the cohort), who reaped no beneficial effect of physical activity on CRP levels.

They also found that light to moderate alcohol consumption was associated with lower CRP, but only in men who were not depressed. Light to moderate alcohol consumption was not associated with lower CRP in those with increased depressive symptom severity, the researchers said.

This is the first study that has examined the impact of depressive symptomatology on the anti-inflammatory benefits of leisure time physical activity and light to moderate alcohol consumption.

“These findings argue for medical providers to combine management of depression alongside reduction of other forms of cardiovascular risk, instead of the more traditional approach of managing conditions separately,” the authors conclude.


So, keep smiling to kick away the blues!


via Depression negates heart-healthy behaviors | theheart.org.

Bypass surgery (CABG) beats Angioplasty (PCI) in diabetic patients


Patients with diabetes and multivessel coronary artery disease treated with Bypass surgery (CABG surgery) had significantly lower rates of death from any cause, nonfatal MI, or nonfatal stroke when compared with diabetic patients treated with PCI (Angioplasty and stenting), according to the long-awaited main results of the FREEDOM trial. The study was presented in the AHA meeting in 2012 and published subsequently in the NEJM. It studied 1900 diabetic patients, majority with triple vessel disease and found that surgery was a superior option compared to angioplasty.


The study concluded that in diabetic patients with complex disease, “CABG was of significant benefit as compared with PCI.”  CABG was also associated with a significant reduction in the risk of heart attacks and all-cause mortality, while PCI was associated with a lower risk of stroke. For the FREEDOM investigators, CABG surgery should be the preferred method of revascularization for patients with diabetes and multivessel coronary artery disease.

There have been trends showing similar results recently (in Feb 2013) too in a smaller study, called VA-CARDS following up 198 patients. The study was published in the JACC journal and again proved that Diabetic patients with multivessel disease would be better off with surgery. 

Considering the evidence the debate over PCI vs CABG in diabetic patients should end now, given the clear results from FREEDOM. These new data highlight the importance of collaboration and cooperation between the Cardiologists and Surgeons to provide the best patient care. The data also clearly show that for patients with diabetes and multivessel disease, “surgery is the best option for patients,” a finding that has important implications given the obesity epidemic and rising rates of diabetes in the developed world.

via CABG beats PCI in diabetic patients | theheart.org.