Women’s cardiac care: how do you think we’re doing?

by Carolyn Thomas     @HeartSisters

In their landmark review, Canadian heart researchers Dr. Karin Humphries and Dr. Louise Pilote answered this important question(1):

“Why are we examining women’s cardiovascular health in this issue of the Canadian Journal of Cardiology?”      .

Why indeed?  Some of their answers may surprise you. . .     .
Continue reading “Women’s cardiac care: how do you think we’re doing?”

ISCHEMIA study: that blockage isn’t a time bomb in your chest

by Carolyn Thomas     @HeartSisters  

If you’re a heart patient living with stable angina, the ISCHEMIA clinical trial presented last weekend at the 2019 American Heart Association Scientific Sessions is all about you. Cardiologist Dr. John Mandrola described the impact of this study in his must-read Medscape column like this:

CARDIOLOGY CHANGES TODAY!”      .

But realistically, does one study have the power to actually change the practice of cardiology?      .
Continue reading “ISCHEMIA study: that blockage isn’t a time bomb in your chest”

Bed rest and other kinds of cardiac overtreatment

by Carolyn Thomas    @HeartSisters  

“From my earliest days in medicine, I have struggled against the prevailing model of health care” is how the pioneering cardiologist Dr. Bernard Lown sums up his long and impressive career as a rebel.

Dr. Lown is now Professor of Cardiology Emeritus at Harvard, but to me he is the physician I love to quote here on Heart Sisters – as in my blog post title, Why Aren’t More Doctors Like Dr. Bernard Lown?         . Continue reading “Bed rest and other kinds of cardiac overtreatment”

Would you drive your car if its brakes were “failing”?

by Carolyn Thomas      @HeartSisters

Imagine your mechanic telling you that your brakes are failing. Would you voluntarily get behind the wheel of that car – and then happily drive it home? Of course you wouldn’t.  Yet right now, as you are reading these words, doctors around the world in a medical office or hospital clinic somewhere out there are casually saying out loud the words “HEART FAILURE” to diagnose people who will leave that place feeling scared to death.   .   Continue reading “Would you drive your car if its brakes were “failing”?”

A tumor? In my heart?!?

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Paula is a “youngish 60”, as she describes herself, recently retired after a long career in public relations and marketing, and very active. A couple of years ago, for example, Paula and her husband hiked 530 miles together across northern Spain on the famous Camino de Santiago trail. So, definitely “youngish”.
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But this past spring, Paula was admitted to the hospital after a week of chest pain, shortness of breath, jaw pain and crushing fatigue. Her initial diagnostic tests suggested she was NOT having a heart attack – but what was discovered after that was something very rare.  .