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Reducing Salt Intake -- Even In Small Amounts -- Could Mean Fewer Heart Attacks, Strokes And Deaths

Reducing salt in the American diet by as little as one-half teaspoon (or three grams) per day could prevent nearly 100, 000 heart attacks and 92, 000 deaths each year, according to a new study. Such benefits are on par with the benefits from reductions in smoking and could save the United States about $24 billion in healthcare costs, the researchers add. A team from the University of California, San Francisco, Stanford University Medical Center and Columbia University Medical Center conducted the study. The findings appear January 20 in online publication by the New England Journal of Medicine and also will be reported in the February 18 print issue of the journal.

A Little Less Salt Would Save Many Lives, US

Even a small reduction in daily salt intake could mean fewer heart attacks, strokes and deaths said US researchers who estimated cutting back by as little as half a teaspoon a day could prevent 92, 000 deaths and nearly 100, 000 heart attacks in the US every year. The researchers, from the University of California, San Francisco, Stanford University Medical Center and Columbia University Medical Center, suggest the benefits of cutting salt intake are on a par with reducing smoking and could save the US about 24 billion dollars in healthcare costs. They wrote a paper on their findings that was published online in the New England Journal of Medicine on 20 January.

FDA Approves For Permanent Treatment Of Advanced Heart Failure Assist Device Pioneered By Texas Heart Institute At St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital

The federal Food and Drug Administration today approved a continuous-flow heart-assist device pioneered at the Texas Heart Institute (THI) at St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital (SLEH) for use as a permanent treatment for advanced heart failure. The approval of the pump device, the HeartMate II, follows several years of clinical trials and is seen as a major milestone for patients in the United States. In any given year there are some 250, 000 people who suffer from advanced heart failure, while only about 2, 000 heart transplants are performed annually in the U.S. In addition to the need far outpacing the supply of donor hearts, many patients, due to a variety of circumstances such as age and medical complications, are simply not candidates for heart transplants.

Post-Katrina Stress, Heart Problems Linked

Chronic stress following Hurricane Katrina contributed to a three-fold increase in heart attacks in New Orleans more than two years after levee breaches flooded most of the city, according to researchers at Tulane University School of Medicine. Those suffering heart attacks post-Katrina also were significantly more likely to receive coronary interventions, particularly angioplasty to reopen clogged coronary arteries, which suggests these patients may have more severe disease, according to new data presented on Sunday (March 29, 2009) at the American College of Cardiology's 58th Annual Scientific Session in Orlando, Fla. The analysis is one of the first to look at the long-term impact on public health resulting from major disasters such as Hurricane Katrina.

Heart Murmurs In Children: Not Always A Serious Problem

Your 3-year-old's doctor discovers a heart murmur during a visit for a mild cold with fever and recommends referral to a pediatric cardiologist. You worry and wonder how your healthy, active child could possibly have a heart problem. "Finding out that your child has a heart murmur causes a great deal of anxiety, " said Dr. Louis Bezold, associate professor of pediatrics and chief of the division of pediatric cardiology, University of Kentucky College of Medicine, and co-director of the Kentucky Children's Heart Center. "It is a common misconception that all murmurs are serious, but this is not the case. Murmurs are actually extremely common findings in infants and children.

UT-Battelle Licenses Tissue Regeneration Technologies To NellOne Therapeutics, Inc.

In a major step toward commercialization of a promising therapeutic treatment, Oak Ridge National Laboratory contractor UT-Battelle has exclusively licensed patents on inventions based on the Nell-1 gene to NellOne Therapeutics, Inc. (NellOne), a company spun out of the Department of Energy laboratory. The protein therapy treatment under development takes advantage of the Nell-1 gene's cell-signaling pathway that controls tissue growth and maturation in mammalian organs. The foundation for this therapy is research performed by Cymbeline Culiat, who as an ORNL systems genetics researcher identified the role that the Nell-1 pathway plays in tissue growth and maturation.

St. Jude Medical Achieves Recognition For Security Of Patient Data And Completes Successful Testing To Streamline Connection To Patient Medical Record

St. Jude Medical, Inc. (NYSE:STJ) announced it has successfully completed its second interoperability testing process for the company's Merlin.net™ Patient Care Network, an Internet-based repository of patient and implantable device data. The company also announced today that the Merlin.net PCN is the first medical device network to be awarded ISO 27001 certification, a stringent worldwide information security standard. "Due to recent legislation and the changing health care environment, electronic health records (EHRs) and hospital efficiency are key issues for our customers. As the use of EHRs become central to healthcare delivery and quality, secure data transportability is becoming even more critical and as a result, connectivity is a key priority for our company, " said Eric S.

FDA Approves Left Ventricular Assist System For Severe Heart Failure Patients

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today approved the HeartMate II, a continuous-flow, left ventricular assist system as a support for severe heart failure patients who are not acceptable candidates for heart transplantation. The HeartMate II is already FDA-approved for use in patients awaiting further, perhaps more complex treatment, such as transplants. Heart assist devices are surgically implanted mechanical pumps that help the heart's ventricle pump blood to the rest of the body. HeartMate II consists of a small, lightweight blood pump implanted in a patient's chest just below the heart. An electrical cable that powers the blood pump passes through the patient's skin to an external controller worn around the patient's waist.

Positron Sells Attrius trade; PET Scanner

Positron Corporation (OTCBB:POSC) a molecular imaging solutions company focused on Nuclear Cardiology, announced today the sale of its AttriusTM PET scanner to Manhattan based, Gramercy Cardiac Diagnostic Services, owned by prominent New York City cardiologist, Dr. Peter Rentrop. The Attrius™ is the only PET scanner on the market optimized for myocardial perfusion imaging. The Attrius™ has several specialized features making it the scanner of choice for nuclear cardiologist's who value high quality PET imagery and cardiovascular specific interpretation tools, assisting in accurately assessing the patient's condition. Joseph Oliverio, Chief Technology Officer of Positron states, "We are proud to sell Positron's newly released AttriusTM PET scanner to Dr.

National Wear Red Day Promotes Statewide Heart Disease Awareness

The American Heart Association's national Go Red for Women campaign encourages the public to wear red on Friday, Feb. 5, "National Wear Red Day, " and to show support in the fight against heart disease. This year's nationwide theme is "Our Hearts. Our Choice, " and suggests that women improve their heart health to live stronger, longer lives. The Alabama Department of Public Health and the American Heart Association's collaborative Go Red for Women events include outreach to special populations-Women's Health Information For the Incarcerated Initiative (WHI-FI), and faith-based outreach to African American and Hispanic/Latino communities throughout the state.

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