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Newsletters October 2010 - Jefferson Cardiology Happenings

What's in this Newsletter:

Benefit of Omega-3 Fatty Acid Questioned

Previous studies have demonstrated improved cardiovascular outcomes with omega-3 fatty acids. A study published in the New England Journal of Medicine on August 29 questioned these findings. This study evaluated the effects of omega-3 fatty acid derived from fish and plants.

In this study, 4,837 patients with past heart attacks were studied over a 40 month period and were given the fish product, the plant product or both. After the period of observation, neither product was shown to have benefit compared to placebo.

Is Oxygen for Cardiac Patients Harmful?

Guidelines set up by the American College of Cardiology recommend the use of oxygen for correction of low oxygen levels, for patients with unstable coronary syndrome, and for heart attack victims.

Initial studies showing benefit were not randomized. A recent study involving heart attack victims showed that use of oxygen demonstrated no improvement in survival or incidence of heart rhythm disorders. However, the oxygen treated group demonstrated higher levels of an enzyme or cardiac tissue chemical suggesting increased heart damage. Another study measuring effects of oxygen therapy on coronary blood flow demonstrated oxygen therapy causes constriction of coronary arteries and reduced flow rates. Other studies verified this phenomenon. Also there is evidence that oxygen supplementation results in increased production of substances that constrict coronary arteries and reduces blood flow.

The authors of this review article appearing in the September 21 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology argue that this information supports the idea that oxygen may be harmful to cardiac patients with normal oxygen levels. The authors propose more research to better clarify the role of oxygen in cardiac patients.

Results of NonSurgical Aortic Valve Replacement

Non-surgical aortic valve replacement is frequently available in Europe but not the United States. A recent report provided 30 day outcomes in 32 European centers. This study involved 1,038 patients with almost equal numbers having the procedure done from the femoral artery in the leg and the others by direct cardiac puncture. All patients studied were judged to be at high risk for surgical aortic valve replacement.

Results revealed that the procedural success rate was over 90% with 2.7% requiring valve surgery. Complication rate at 30 days included 8.5% death rate, 7% need for pacemaker, major blood vessel complication was also 7%. In this group at high risk for surgery, nonsurgical aortic valve replacement offers promise.

Amiodarone vs. Multaq

Amiodarone has been recognized as the most effective drug for treatment of atrial fibrillation and is limited by its side effect profile which can be less problematic if drug dosage is kept at a minimum. Multaq is a relatively new drug for treatment of atrial fibrillation. Multaq is chemically similar to amiodarone but has a lower side effect profile.

A study was done comparing the recurrence of atrial fibrillation in patients taking amiodarone and Multaq. After a medium of 7 months, 64% of Multaq treated patients and 42% of amiodarone treated patients reverted back to atrial fibrillation. Of these patients, 13% stopped amiodarone and 10% stopped Multaq. Serious adverse effects were seen in 11% of the amiodarone group and 5% of the Multaq group. This is another study demonstrating that amiodarone has a lesser rate of recurrent atrial fibrillation but more adverse side effects than Multaq.

Staff Birthday

We would like to extend a very Happy Birthday to Diane Ranallo, medical assistant.

Happy Halloween

We at Jefferson Cardiology would like to wish everyone and their families a very happy and safe Halloween. And don’t forget to remember your favorite Cardiology practice when passing out candy!!

Heart Healthy Turkey Chili

Ingredients:
1 pound chopped leftover turkey 1 teaspoon sugar
½ cup chopped onion 1 ½ tablespoons chili powder
2 cups unsalted canned tomatoes 2 cups chopped celery
4 cups canned kidney beans, rinsed and drained 8 tablespoons fat free sour cream
Water, as desired

Directions:

1. In a soup pot, add the turkey and onion. Sauté over low heat until the onions are translucent. Stir in the tomatoes, kidney beans, sugar and chili powder. Cover and cook for 10 minutes. Add the celery and cook for another 10 minutes. Add water, as desired, for thinner consistency.

2. Ladle into warmed individual bowls and top each with 1 tablespoon sour cream. Serve immediately.

Nutritional facts: Calories 242; Protein 21g; Carbs 30g; Total Fat 4g; Sat fat 1g; Mono 1g; Cholesterol 31mg; Sodium 380mg; Fiber 7g; Potassium 784mg; Calcium 90mg

A publication of Jefferson Cardiology Association
Alan D. Bramowitz, M.D. | Michael S. Nathanson, M.D. | Gennady Geskin, M.D.

Jefferson Hospital Medical Building
Suite 403, Coal Valley Road
P.O. Box 18285

Belle Vernon Office
1533 Broad Ave
Belle Vernon, Pa 15012