Archive - 2012

Archive - 2012

November 6th

People More Likely to Die of Heart Related Issues in Winter

No matter what climate you live in, you're more likely to die of heart-related issues in the winter, according to research presented at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2012.

"This was surprising because climate was thought to be the primary determinant of seasonal variation in death rates," said Bryan Schwartz, M.D., lead author of the study.

Researchers at Good Samaritan Hospital in Los Angeles analyzed 2005-08 death certificate data from seven U.S. locations with different climates: Los Angeles County, Calif.; Texas; Arizona; Georgia; Washington; Pennsylvania and Massachusetts.

In all areas, total and "circulatory" deaths rose an average 26 percent to 36 percent from the summer low to the winter peak over four years. Circulatory deaths include fatal heart attack, heart failure, cardiovascular disease and stroke.

Most Sudden Cardiac Deaths in Young People Do Not Occur During Sports

Toronto, ON -- About three-quarters of sudden cardiac deaths in people under age 40 occur in the home—not in the sports arena or on the playing field—according to a study presented here at the Canadian Cardiovascular Congress 2012.

Researchers investigated the incidence of sudden cardiac death in two- to 40-year-olds living in Ontario in 2008. They found that most deaths occurred in men (76%) aged 18 to 40 (90%).

Study author and scientific chair of the CCC, Dr Andrew Krahn (University of British Columbia, Vancouver), said three key messages emerge from the data.

"First, it gives us . . . a sense of the scope of the problem," he noted. "Our best estimate is that about 500 young people under the age of 40 die suddenly from heart disease every year in Canada."

November 5th

ICDs Can Reduce Risk of Death in Youth with HCM

LOS ANGELES -- A multicenter registry has demonstrated that the use of implantable cardioverter-defibrillators (ICDs) can combat sudden cardiac death in high-risk pediatric patients suffering from hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). The study was presented Nov. 5 at the 2012 Scientific Sessions of the American Heart Association (AHA) in Los Angeles.

While the study found that the rate of possible device complications adds a level of complexity to this age group, it also demonstrated that life-saving ICD interventions were common in younger patients when terminating irregular heart rhythms, called ventricular tachyarrhythmias or fibrillation.

Small Change in Defibrillator Therapy Leads to Huge Benefits for Heart Patients

Survival Climbs, Risk of Unnecessary Shocks Plummets in New Study 

ROCHESTER, NY -- A new study shows that defibrillators – devices designed to detect and correct dangerous heart rhythms – can help people with heart disease live longer, and with a much better quality of life, than they do now.

A small, very simple change in the way physicians set or programmed the device led to a dramatic 80 to 90 percent reduction in inappropriate therapies – potentially painful and anxiety-provoking shocks delivered for rhythms that aren’t dangerous or life threatening. And, to the authors’ surprise, the new programming also significantly increased survival, lowering the risk of death by 55 percent compared to patients whose devices used traditional programming. This reduction is above and beyond the usual decrease in mortality associated with defibrillator therapy, leading to an overall 70 percent reduction in death.

CPR Training Rates Lowest in Rural Areas and Southern Region of U.S.

Sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) is the leading cause of natural death in the United States. Organizations such as the American Heart Association (AHA) and the American Red Cross regularly offer cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) training across the country, as bystander CPR can save the life of someone experiencing SCA.

A new study was the first to identify the CPR training rates across the country on a county-by-county basis. DCRI fellow Monique Anderson, MD, presented the findings during the 2012 AHA Scientific Sessions. The presentation also won a Council Award for best resuscitation abstract. Dr. Anderson received the award Tuesday at the 3CPR Annual Council Dinner.

The researchers combined data on CPR training from the AHA and the Red Cross with county demographic and geographic information to map out areas of low, medium, and high concentrations of people trained in CPR.

Cooling Cardiac Arrest Patients to Lower Body Temps Improved Survival

Study Highlights:

  • Cooling resuscitated cardiac arrest patients to lower body temperatures may be associated with a better chance of survival and greater functional ability after recovery.

  • Four times as many patients survived cardiac arrest without serious cognitive impairment six months after being cooled to 89.6F/32C compared to those who were cooled to 93.2F/34C.

  • Larger studies are needed to determine whether the improved outcome is related to the decreased temperature.

Now What? Resuscitation May Not Be the End of the Story

LOS ANGELES -- Patients who experienced the loss of pulses after the successful return of spontaneous circulation were more likely to die at hospital discharge, researchers reported here.

Based on case data from the Resuscitation Outcomes Consortium, patients who had unresolved prehospital re-arrest after an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest had greater than six-fold odds of death prior to hospital discharge (OR 6.14, 95% CI 4.32 to 8.75, P<0.001), according to David Salcido, MPH, of the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine in Pennsylvania, and colleagues.

While the incidence of re-arrest was relatively uncommon in this study population, survival was 7.8% among cases of unresolved pre-hospital re-arrest versus 33.3% in cases without, Salcido reported at the American Heart Association meeting. The overall survival to hospital discharge was 28%.

Strangers More Likely than Family Members to Provide CPR

LOS ANGELES -- People with cardiac arrest are more likely to get cardiopulmonary resuscitation from strangers than members of their own family, especially wives, according to a study in Japan.

Friends and colleagues were twice as probable and bystanders were 1.5 times more likely to perform CPR, a procedure used on a person whose heart has stopped or is no longer breathing, the research showed. The study was presented at the American Heart Association annual meeting held in Los Angeles today.

Patients found by family members had the lowest survival rate, the study said. Wives were least likely to administer the chest compressions and rescue breathing involved in CPR, researchers said. The findings suggest a combination of cultural, emotional and demographic issues may be at play.

ASU Recognized for Its 'HEART Safe' Program

The Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS) this week recognized Arizona State University as one of the first participants in its HEART Safe program. 

HEART Safe is part of the ADHS Save Hearts in Arizona Registry and Education (SHARE) program, administered by the Bureau of EMS and Trauma Systems.

To qualify for the two-year designation, businesses or community groups must meet the following criteria:

  • Possess a written plan for cardiac arrest response
  • Offer Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) / Automated External Defibrillator (AED) training and have trained at least 50 percent of staff
  • Have an on-site AED that is registered with the ADHS.

“The ASU AED program is one of the oldest and the largest university AED program in the United States,” said Jim Gibbs, ASU Fire Marshall.

November 4th

Luck of the Irish

***The following essay is from my essay to the CNN Fit Nation: 2013 Triathlon Challenge.
****I'll add a link to my video once I have posted. I'd be honored for this dream to become a reality.

"Luck of the Irish"

As I’ve spent the last few days watching iReport videos from last year’s “Lucky Seven” and this year’s FitNation hopefuls, I’ve been in awe of the stories and experiences I’ve listened to and read. Everyone seems to have a great reason for applying and there is no doubt that they make a very strong case as to why they should be chosen, but I am going to give this awesome opportunity a shot nonetheless.

Mission & Vision

The mission of the Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) Foundation is to prevent death and disability from sudden cardiac arrest. The vision of the SCA Foundation is to increase awareness about sudden cardiac arrest and influence attitudinal and behavioral changes that will reduce mortality and morbidity from SCA.

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