All Posts tagged heart disease

Another benefit of statins

Another benefit of statins

Lipitor

NEJM JW Neurol May 22 2012
  
For years, patients have thought of STATIN medications (Lipitor, Crestor, etc.) as just being good for lowering cholesterol. However, we have known about other anti-inflammatory effects of statins for years.
In a recent study in the New England Journal of Medicine, these medications also have immunomodulatory effects that are independent of their effect on cholesterol. A reduction in brain atrophy has been shown in patients who take statins and have multiple sclerosis.
The importance of this study is not really just about multiple sclerosis, but rather the anti-inflammatory effects of statin drugs (which are more important than you think in decreasing heart disease) that are not found in ANY OTHER CHOLESTEROL LOWERING PRODUCT-EITHER PRESCRIPTION OR OVER THE COUNTER!
By Harvey Mishner, M.D.
MAXhealth Lakewood Ranch
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Are there side effects to statins?

Are there side effects to statins?
SeniorsThe latest guidelines for cholesterol treatment recommends more seniors need to be on statin medications to lower their risk of heart disease. This is an interesting article because there is a misconception that statins are dangerous drugs. When they were first introduced in the 1980’s, the FDA initially required every patient to see an eye doctor yearly because of a possible risk of cataracts. This was quickly reversed as the target patient group was itself at a high risk of developing cataracts. For years, we had to monitor liver functions and patients were worried about liver damage. This is so rare (even though statins can harmlessly elevate liver enzymes a little bit) that a few years ago the FDA withdrew the requirements of regular monitoring of liver functions.
This is a direct quote from the article:
“Many side effects such as myopathy, fatigue, muscle aches, and rhabdomyolysis, and memory loss have been commonly attributed to statins, but the researchers found that these were no more common among patients taking statins than among those taking a placebo. The withdrawal rate from trials was also similar for statins and placebo, at around 12-15%.” There was a slight risk of developing diabetes: 3% of statin patients vs 2.4% incidence in the placebo group.
 
Please be reassured that taking statins are safe and, to date, there is NO evidence that any OTHER cholesterol lowering medication (herbal or prescription) have ever been shown scientifically to decrease the risk of cardiovascular disease.
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Fish Oil Update

Fish Oil Update

A study that was just completed in March, and reported in JAMA showed that fish oil had no benefits in patients who either had heart disease or who were at risk for getting heart disease. Whether or not eating fatty fish twice a week is helpful or not remains to be seen. Yes, high doses of fish oil can lower triglyceride levels but this, too, will not reduce your risk of getting heart disease. However, it is well known that triglyceride levels greater than 500 will increase the risk of acute pancreatitis, which is an extremely painful disease.

As always, please feel free to discuss any and all supplements that you are either using or thinking about using with us. Do not trust your healthcare to the internet, family or friends.

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Power Plate and Heart Disease

Power Plate and Heart Disease

POWER PLATE AND HEART DISEASE

The two leading causes of death in the developed world are myocardial infarction (heart attack) and stroke, both of which are direct consequences of atherosclerosis or hardening of the arteries. As the arteries lose their flexibility, the heart pumps blood but the walls of the arteries do not move as they should, causing an increase in blood pressure. As the heart pulses and the pressure is higher, the heart has to work harder to contract. The higher the pressure gets, the greater likelihood an individual will have a cardiac incident (heart attack or stroke). Atherosclerosis is primarily caused by chronic dietary habits, but also has environmental and genetic factors.

Here are 4 reports about the benefits of Whole Body Vibration (WBV) and the hypertensive patient:

1.       In 2005, researchers in Japan found that the muscular reflexive engagement of the body through whole body vibration (WBV) exercise significantly increased blood flow and oxygenation (Yamada, et al.)

2.       In 2008 a different group of Japanese researchers found that WBV (using Power Plate) acutely decreased arterial stiffness with males in their mid twenties. (Otsuki, et al. 2008)

3.       In 2012 Dr. Figueroa and his research group showed decrease in arterial stiffness in a young obese/overweight female population. Subjects decreased their arterial stiffness significantly using WBV therapy 3 times weekly over 6 weeks.

4.       In 2013, he and other researchers began research using WBV/ reflexive activation with post menopausal hypertension and pre-hypertension patients.

Dr. Figueroa and his research group showed blood pressure reduction with lower leg strength increase.

We have been successfully using POWER PLATE (WBV) for over 4 years at KAIZEN TOTAL WELLNESS. For more information, or to schedule a free demonstration, call 941-315-6182. Our programs are all medically supervised and provided by our own POWER PLATE CERTIFIED physical therapists and trainers.

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ERECTILE DYSFUNCTION AND HEART DISEASE-THE CANARY IN A COAL MINE

ERECTILE DYSFUNCTION AND HEART DISEASE-THE CANARY IN A COAL MINE
ERECTILE DYSFUNCTION AND HEART DISEASE-THE CANARY IN A COAL MINE
American Journal of Medicine, 02/22/2014
 
“All men with vasculogenic erectile dysfunction require a cardiovascular workup”
 
This is the conclusion by the researchers studying the connection with ED and heart disease in men. When they say “vasculogenic”, they are referring to people who smoke, have high cholesterol or high blood pressure. “Non-vasculogenic” would include psychological or medication induced impotence(antidepressant, for example)
Younger men should be evaluated for cardiovascular risk factors and make the lifestyle changes associated with better health. Any male with a higher risk (age, diabetes, high blood pressure, smokers) should have further testing done. The two best tests would be either a stress (exercise) test with a cardiologist or possibly a C-T scan to look for coronary artery calcium -which might be an indication of atherosclerosis. (Some insurance companies WILL NOT pay for this one and it may be expensive)
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Can depression cause heart disease?

Can depression cause heart disease?

DEPRESSION AND HEART DISEASE

The Scientific Statement was published online February 24 in Circulation.

We all know that obesity, high cholesterol, hypertension, diabetes, genetics and smoking are the major risk factors for heart disease. But did you know that DEPRESSION is also linked to heart attacks? According to an American Heart Association panel, depressed patients were more likely to get heart disease than non-depressed people. It is hoped that by treating depression, we can help treat/prevent heart disease. We have known for years that all stroke patients benefit from antidepressants whether they are clinically depressed or not. There have also been numerous studies about quality of life in patients who have diabetes, heart disease, cancer or depression. As you can probably guess, the depressed patients consistently score worse than all of the other patient groups!

Even though depression is more widely accepted now than in the past, there is still a stigma associated with depression. Most insurance companies with NOT even pay the physician if a depression code is listed on the bill! And counseling! Forget about it. Insurance companies don’t mind paying hundreds of thousands of dollars for heart surgery, but to pay a few thousand for psychotherapy………..

 

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Sulfonylurea (diabetes drug class) may increase heart disease risk

Sulfonylurea (diabetes drug class) may increase heart disease risk

A study presented September  27, 2013 at the European Association for the Study of Diabetes in Barcelona announced that first line treatment with sulfonylureas (glipizide, glimiperide, etc.) can increase the risk of heart disease 2 fold when compared to metformin. It is interesting because these same concerns were brought up in the 1970s. What is recommended is continuing to use METFORMIN as a first line drug, but adding a “GLIPTIN” (Januvia, Onglyza or Tradjenta) to help control sugars.

This combination is great because it does not cause weight gain nor cause low sugar reactions.

So why do some patients use sulfonylureas? They are CHEAP generics and many insurance plans will not cover the newer GLIPTINS (which came on the market in 2006).

 

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