Posts Tagged ‘cardiologist’

Good Morning America visits new heart imaging device in Cleveland

May 27, 2010

Dr. Marco Costa found a second blocked artery in Mack Bailey’s heart — and demonstrated to a Good Morning America audience the first vascular-imaging technology based on optical coherence tomography (OCT) — at the same time Thursday.

Costa is an interventional cardiologist and director of the cardiovascular research institute at University Hospitals Case Medical Center in Cleveland, Ohio. Bailey is a 60-year-old Clevelander with had a heart attack and is being treated by Costa.

Both agreed to be filmed and interviewed by the NBC morning news show because University Hospitals is the first — and so far only — hospital to use the C7-XR Imaging System and accompanying C7 Dragonfly Imaging Catheter made by LightLab Imaging Inc. during patient heart procedures.

While using the technology to place a stent in one of Bailey’s heart arteries, Costa found a second blocked artery that had not shown up on images of Bailey’s heart. Costa ended up placing two stents, that day.

“If he had gone home this weekend without having this procedure today, he would have gone home with a very nice, well-placed stent in the vessel that did not cause the heart attack,” Costa said during the Good Morning America segment.

The LightLab system uses near-infrared light to produce high-resolution, real-time images that are better and faster than images produced by competing ultrasound technology. The system recently was approved for sale by the Food and Drug Administration. UH Case Medical Center was the core laboratory on the FDA approval study and analyzed the study’s results, according to the Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine blog.

Impotence plus heart disease ups death risk – Dr. Sahil Parikh discusses the study

May 27, 2010

Reuters Report ::

Men with heart disease who also have erectile dysfunction die sooner than men who do not seek treatment for impotence, researchers reported on Monday.

They found that men who had both conditions were twice as likely to die from any cause and twice as likely to have a heart attack than men with heart disease alone.

The researchers expressed concern that using drugs such as Pfizer’s Viagra or Eli Lilly’s Cialis to treat erectile dysfunction could mask the symptoms that point to widespread heart and artery disease and said men complaining of impotence should be checked by a cardiologist.

“Erectile dysfunction is something that regularly should be addressed in the medical history of patients; it might be a symptom of early atherosclerosis,” Dr. Michael Bohm of the University of Saarland in Germany, who led the study, said in a statement.

His team studied 1,519 men in 13 countries taking part in some larger studies of various heart disease treatments. As part of the study the men were also asked about erectile dysfunction.

More than half of them, 55 percent, did, Bohm’s team said in a report published in the journal Circulation and also presented at a meeting of the American College of Cardiology.

During the two years of the study, 11.3 percent of the patients who reported erectile dysfunction died, compared to 5.6 percent of those with mild or no impotence problems.

“It has long been known that erectile dysfunction is a marker for cardiovascular disease,” said Dr. Sahil Parikh at University Hospitals Case Medical Center in Cleveland, Ohio, who was not involved in the study.

The first impotence drug, Pfizer’s Viagra, known generically as sildenafil, was at first developed to lower blood pressure, he said.

“They realized it had this other effect, which patients quite enjoyed,” Parikh said in a telephone interview.

HAPPY SIDE-EFFECT

Viagra and rival drugs such as Eli Lilly’s Cialis and Bayer AG’s BAYG.DE Levitra all work by increasing blood flow.

“In order to have proper erectile function, you have to have adequate blood flow to the genitals. If you have atherosclerosis, whether in the arteries on the neck, which can cause stroke, or the arteries of the heart, which can cause heart attack … it is the same disease.”

But while the erectile dysfunction drugs help blood flow all over the body, they do not treat the underlying hardening and narrowing in the arteries that is causing the problem.

“If patients have erectile dysfunction, we have to be very aggressive about screening and treating them for heart disease,” Parikh said.

When Viagra came onto the market, many health experts welcomed it as a way to get men who might otherwise neglect their health to go to a doctor. But Bohm and Parikh both agreed that patients — and their doctors — need to look hard at the hearts of men with erectile dysfunction.

“Men with ED going to a general practitioner or a urologist need to be referred for a cardiology workup to determine existing cardiovascular disease and proper treatment,” Bohm said.

“The medication works and the patient doesn’t show up any more,” he added. “These men are being treated for the ED, but not the underlying cardiovascular disease.”

The drugs are wildly popular. Viagra alone had sales of nearly $2 billion in 2009.