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Health News Results - 331

Occasional Naps Do a Heart Good, Swiss Study Finds

MONDAY, Sept. 9, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Could grabbing a nap once or twice a week help you live longer?

A new study reports the occasional nap appears to cut in half people's risk of heart attack, strokes and heart disease, compared with folks who never nap.

But more frequent napping provided no benefit, researchers found.

"In fact, we found that frequent nappers...

Having HIV May Heighten Stroke Risk

MONDAY, Sept. 9, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- People with HIV have a greatly increased risk of a common heart rhythm disorder that's a leading cause of stroke, a new study shows.

The increased risk of atrial fibrillation (AF) from HIV is similar to or higher than known risk factors such as diabetes and high blood pressure, according to researchers from the University of California, San Fr...

40-Year Study Sees Steady Rise in Pregnant Women's Blood Pressure

MONDAY, Sept. 9, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Over the past four decades, the U.S. has seen a sharp rise in the number of pregnant women with high blood pressure, new research reveals.

For the study, the researchers analyzed data from about 151 million hospitalizations between 1970 and 2010 to determine the rates of chronic high blood pressure in pregnant women aged 15 to 49.

C...

Aggressive Blood Pressure Treatment Does Not Put Seniors at Risk: Study

SATURDAY, Sept. 7, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Intensive treatment to lower high blood pressure can decrease older adults' risk of sharp blood pressure drops that can cause dizziness and increase the likelihood of falling, a new study says.

It included more than 2,800 patients, average age 63, who had recently suffered a stroke.

Half received more ag...

Even Small Improvements in Cholesterol, Blood Pressure Help Prevent Heart Attack

THURSDAY, Sept. 5, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Small, lasting changes in cholesterol and blood pressure levels can dramatically reduce the risk of heart disease and strokes over a lifetime, new research suggests.

The large study found that a combination of a drop in LDL cholesterol (the bad type) of 14 mg/dL and a 5 mm Hg drop in systolic blood pressure (the top number in a blood pressur...

AHA News: Now a 2-Time Survivor, Tedy Bruschi Still Tackling Stroke Awareness

THURSDAY, Sept. 5, 2019 (American Heart Association News) -- Former NFL star Tedy Bruschi spent the last 14 years showing what a stroke survivor could do: continue playing pro football, climb Mount Kilimanjaro, run the Boston Marathon.

Now Bruschi is showing what a two-time stroke survivor can do.

Bruschi had his second stroke on July 4. Since then he's run a 7-mile road r...

Going Vegetarian Good for Your Heart, But May Up Stroke Risk

THURSDAY, Sept. 5, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Vegetarianism is all the rage these days, but a new study suggests that slicing meat from your diet might raise your risk of stroke slightly.

While vegetarians had a 22% lower risk for heart disease, they had a 20% higher risk for stroke, British researchers found. Meanwhile, people who ate fish but no other meats (pescatarians) had ...

Poverty Makes Heart Failure Even More Lethal, Study Shows

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- A new study helps confirm a dismal reality: Poor Americans are more likely to die from heart failure than their richer counterparts.

The likely reasons? According to the researchers, higher obesity rates and associated increases in type 2 diabetes appear to be driving two-thirds of the trend.

"This study underscores the disparitie...

Hurricane Dorian Can Wreak Havoc on Heart Health

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- As Hurricane Dorian rolls up the southeastern coast of the United States, most in its path worry about having enough water, food and batteries to ride the storm out.

But the American Heart Association (AHA) warns that the high stress and trauma of such an event can also trigger heart trouble, especially among heart disease and stroke patie...

Poor Circulation in Legs? Statin Meds Can Keep You Living Longer

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Folks with peripheral artery disease (PAD) have a much lower risk of death if they take cholesterol-lowering statins as directed by their doctor, a new study reports.

About 200 million people worldwide suffer from PAD, a condition in which arteries feeding blood to the legs become clogged, researchers explained.

However, patients who ...

Weight-Loss Surgery Drops Heart Disease, Death Risk for Diabetics

TUESDAY, Sept. 3, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- For people who are obese and have type 2 diabetes, weight-loss surgery leads to more than a slimmer figure.

It also reduces the risk of heart complications and premature death by about 40% compared to standard medical care, new research says.

The Cleveland Clinic researchers compared the impact of various types of weight-loss (ba...

Cancer Overtakes Heart Disease as #1 Killer of Middle-Aged in Wealthy Nations

TUESDAY, Sept. 3, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Heart disease still claims the lives of more people globally, but in more affluent nations it has now ceded its place as the leading killer to cancer, a major new report finds.

Around the world, 40% of all deaths are caused by heart disease, making it the number one global killer. That means that of the estimated 55 million people who die...

For Men, Living Alone May Mean Poorer Control of Blood-Thinning Meds

MONDAY, Sept. 2, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Men who are on the blood-thinning drug warfarin have more difficulty taking the medication if they live alone, but the same is not true for women, a new study finds.

Warfarin (brand-name Coumadin) is a common anti-clotting treatment to prevent stroke in people with atrial fibrillation, the most common type of heart ...

Long-Term 'Couch Potatoes' May Face Double the Odds for Early Death

SATURDAY, Aug. 31, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Decades spent on couches, chairs and otherwise not exercising could mean much shorter lives, new research shows.

A Norwegian team who tracked health outcomes for more than 23,000 adults over 20 years found that those who were inactive over that time had twice the risk of a premature death, compared to those who we...

Rising Obesity Rates Undermining Strides Made Against Heart Disease

TUESDAY, Aug. 27, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Rising obesity rates, coupled with an associated jump in diabetes and high blood pressure cases, appears to be undoing decades of gains made against heart disease, a new study finds.

After 2010, the rate of deaths from heart disease continued to drop, but more slowly. Deaths from stroke leveled off, and deaths from high blood pressure ("hyper...

For Seniors, 'Silent Strokes' Are Common Post-Surgery Threat: Study

MONDAY, Aug. 26, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Silent strokes are common in seniors who have had surgery, and may double their risk of mental decline within a year, a Canadian study reports.

While an obvious (or "overt") stroke often causes symptoms such as weakness in an arm or speech problems, a silent (or "covert") stroke is apparent only on brain scans.

The new study included...

AHA News: Study of Skiers Holds Surprises About A-Fib, Stroke and Intense Exercise

MONDAY, Aug. 26, 2019 (American Heart Association News) -- Exercise is important for health and wellbeing. But past studies suggest high-intensity exercise may be a risk factor for an irregular heart rhythm called atrial fibrillation that sometimes leads to stroke. So, are athletes who develop A-Fib at higher risk for stroke?

Researchers in Sweden looked at men and women who complete...

Wintertime Smog Tied to Rise in Heart Procedures

FRIDAY, Aug. 23, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Breathing in smoggy air, especially in the colder months, may be especially taxing for the heart, new research out of Europe suggests.

Polish researchers found that high levels of air pollution were tied to spikes in procedures to open blocked heart arteries. This was especially apparent in winter, when pollution levels were highest, a new stu...

Just One Pill for All Your Heart Health Needs? It's On the Way

THURSDAY, Aug. 22, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Imagine a single pill loaded with a battery of heart medications that you take once a day to cut your chances of heart attack, stroke and heart failure.

A new clinical trial has turned that idea into reality.

The "polypill" reduced the risk of life-threatening heart health problems by more than one-third during a five-year period i...

Push Stroke Patients Harder for Better Gains in Walking: Study

THURSDAY, Aug. 22, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Stroke survivors can recover their walking ability faster through high-intensity step training than with less demanding rehab, a new study suggests.

"Rehabilitation after a stroke traditionally focuses on patients practicing low-intensity walking, usually only in a forward direction, which does not provide enough of a challenge to the nervou...

Dirty Air Is Deadly, Global Study Confirms

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 21, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Air pollution -- especially the fine particles that you breathe into your lungs -- can shorten your life, a global study reports.

The new research found that short-term exposure to air pollution upped the daily risk of death from all causes. The risk of dying from heart disease, stroke and lung disease also rose with exposure to fine parti...

When Does Heart Health Return to Normal After Quitting Smoking?

TUESDAY, Aug. 20, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- When you stop smoking, your heart starts to rebound right away, but a full recovery can take as long as 15 years, a new study suggests.

"The benefit of quitting smoking cannot be overstated -- the cardiovascular system begins to recover quickly, with some physiologic changes happening within hours," said lead researcher Meredith Duncan, of th...

'No Quick Fix' for A-Fib, But Cardiologist Says You Can Help Prevent It

MONDAY, Aug. 19, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- There is no cure for a-fib, but the common heart disorder can be managed, an expert says.

Atrial fibrillation -- which can lead to blood clots, stroke, heart failure and other heart-related complications -- affects as many as 6 million people in the United States. It's more common in whites than in blacks and Hispanics, and more common among m...

How Sleep Woes May Strain Your Heart

MONDAY, Aug. 19, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- If you spend a lot of nights watching the clock instead of sleeping, new research suggests you may need to be as concerned about your heart health as you are about lost shut-eye.

People with genetic variants linked to insomnia have an increased risk of heart disease, heart failure and stroke, according to the study....

Heart Experts Support Use of Prescription Fish Oil to Lower Triglyceride Levels

MONDAY, Aug. 19, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Heart experts are advising that prescription-strength fish oil pills might help lower excess levels of blood fats known as triglycerides.

The pills contain heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids. When prescribed by a doctor, these meds can lower high triglyceride levels by 20%-30%, according to a new American Heart Association science advis...

For Heart Patients, CPAP Treatment May Ease Depression: Study

FRIDAY, Aug. 16, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) treatment of obstructive sleep apnea can ease depression in people with heart disease, according to a groundbreaking new study.

"Patients who have had a stroke or heart attack are prone to suffer from low mood and are two to three times more likely to develop clinical depression, which then further el...

AHA News: Age Could Be Key to Women's Worse Quality of Life Post-Stroke

THURSDAY, Aug. 15, 2019 (American Heart Association News) -- After a stroke, women are known to have a worse health-related quality of life than men, both in the short term and long term. Now a study gives some insight into why, and what can be done to alter the aftermath.

The findings, published Thursday in the journal Stroke, suggest women have a lower post-stroke quality of ...

More Than Half of Younger Patients Skip or Quit Blood Pressure Meds

THURSDAY, Aug. 15, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- High blood pressure can be a killer. But a new study finds that more than half of younger patients -- those under 65 -- who are prescribed high blood pressure meds either stop taking them within a few months or don't take them as prescribed.

But stopping treatment can prove dangerous, even for the relatively young, the study's lead author w...

Speed Stroke Recovery With Exercise

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 14, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Aerobic exercise significantly improves stroke survivors' endurance and walking ability, researchers report.

They analyzed 19 studies that included nearly 500 stroke survivors, aged 54 to 71, who completed aerobic exercise programs similar in structure to cardiac rehabilitation.

The patients did two or three aerobics workouts a we...

AHA News: Rising Blood Pressure Puts Women At Greater Stroke Risk Than Men

TUESDAY, Aug. 13, 2019 (American Heart Association News) -- As the severity of high blood pressure rises, the risk of stroke rises almost twice as quickly in women compared with men, according to a new study.

Published Tuesday in the journal Hypertension, the research raises the question of whether sex-specific guidelines may be needed for controlling high blood pressure.

...

AHA News: Younger Stroke Survivors More At Risk For Anxiety

TUESDAY, Aug. 13, 2019 (American Heart Association News) -- Anxiety is more than twice as common in younger stroke survivors, especially those who show symptoms of depression, than in older patients, according to a new study that recommends routine mental health screenings for survivors of all ages.

Anxiety is common after stroke and transient ischemic attacks. TIAs typically resolve...

AHA News: Here's Why Stroke Survivors Need to Pay Attention to Bone Health

FRIDAY, Aug. 9, 2019 (American Heart Association News) -- People who have had a stroke, and the doctors who treat them, have a lot to be concerned about: regaining mobility and function, controlling risk factors for a second stroke, guarding against depression that can result from a newly limited life.

There's another potential consequence not on everyone's list: osteoporosis.

...

AHA News: Stroke May Lead to Lower Vitamin D

THURSDAY, Aug. 8, 2019 (American Heart Association News) -- Low vitamin D levels do not lead to strokes but can result from them, according to the latest study that looks at the relationship between the two.

Vitamin D is mostly known for helping the body absorb calcium and contributing to bone health. But research in recent decades also has looked at whether vitamin D levels affect c...

Can Major Surgeries Cause a Long-Term 'Brain Drain'?

THURSDAY, Aug. 8, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Before any surgery, you typically hear warnings about risks like bleeding and infection, but new research suggests that problems with thinking or memory can often follow a major procedure.

The study found that people who had surgery had an increased risk of a small, long-term decline in cognitive function years later. Cognitive function is y...

Smoking Creates Long-Lasting Risk for Clogged Leg Arteries

MONDAY, Aug. 5, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Cigarette smokers have a sharply higher risk of peripheral artery disease (PAD) -- and even if they quit, that added risk can last for decades, a new study warns.

PAD narrows arteries in the leg, leading to reduced blood flow that causes pain, poor wound healing and other symptoms.

The study also showed that smoking increases the odds...

Scorching Pavement Sends Some to the ER With Burns

FRIDAY, Aug. 2, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Make sure rubber, not your skin, meets the road: When skin touches sunbaked pavement, serious burns can quickly set in.

In sizzling regions like the Southwestern United States, all it takes for a severe burn is 2 seconds of unprotected skin-on-asphalt contact, experts say.

"Our research shows that in our city, the risk starts when the...

AHA News: Study Finds Racial Gap in Who Gets Critical Stroke Treatments

THURSDAY, Aug. 1, 2019 (American Heart Association News) -- Black and Hispanic people having a stroke are less likely than their white counterparts to get treatments proven to reduce death and improve quality of life, new research shows.

For strokes caused by a clot, the gold standard treatment is a clot-busting drug called alteplase, according to guidelines from the American Heart A...

Trying to Avoid a Second Stroke? Blood Pressure Control Is Key

MONDAY, July 29, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- If you've already had one stroke, your risk for another is much higher. But new research found that well-controlled blood pressure can reduce that risk by about 20%.

The study authors suggested maintaining a blood pressure of 130/80 mm Hg or less.

"Intensive blood pressure control of at least less than 130/80 mm Hg is recommende...

AHA News: Her Heart 'Looked Like Swiss Cheese' After Stroke at 29

THURSDAY, July 25, 2019 (American Heart Association News) -- Jennifer Michele always has had a knack for sprucing up spaces. That talent prompted her to start an interior design firm in 2007. She then quickly landed the sort of high-profile design job that can make a career.

Less than a year later, at age 29, she had a stroke.

It happened on a late November morning in Vail...

Dirty Air Kills 30,000 Americans Each Year

THURSDAY, July 25, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Despite improved air quality since the 1990s, pollution still causes lung disease, heart attacks and strokes that kill more than 30,000 Americans each year, a new study estimates.

Researchers looked at concentrations of fine pollution particles known as PM2.5 across the country from 1999 to 2015. These tiny particles -- 30 times smaller than...

Higher Cost of New Cholesterol Drugs Putting Patients at Risk: Study

TUESDAY, July 23, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Heart attacks, strokes and other heart problems are more likely in high-risk patients denied access to cutting-edge cholesterol-busting drugs called PCSK9 inhibitors, a new study reports.

Patients are 16% more likely to have a heart-related health crisis if their PCSK9 prescription is rejected than if it is covered and filled for a year, ac...

Testosterone Therapy May Threaten the Heart

TUESDAY, July 23, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Taking testosterone might sound like a good idea for an older man, but a new study suggests the treatment might be bad news for his heart.

Men who took it showed a slightly increased risk of heart attack and stroke in the first few years.

"Our findings show that the use of [testosterone therapy] was associated with an increased risk...

15 Minutes Matters With Strokes

THURSDAY, July 18, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Just 15 minutes can make a difference when someone is struck by a stroke, new research suggests.

The study included more than 6,700 patients in the United States and Canada who suffered an ischemic stroke (blocked blood flow to the brain) and were treated with anti-clotting therapy.

For every 1,000 patients whose treatment began 15...

The 'Bottom' Blood Pressure Number Matters, Too

THURSDAY, July 18, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- When it comes to blood pressure readings, the "top" number seems to grab all the attention.

But a large, new study confirms that both numbers are, in fact, critical in determining the risk of heart attack and stroke.

Blood pressure measurements are given as a "top" and "bottom" number. The first reflects systolic blood pressure, th...

High Blood Pressure, 'Bad' Cholesterol Risky for Young, Too

MONDAY, July 15, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Act sooner rather than later to prevent heart disease, a new study suggests. This means young adults should not put off treating high blood pressure or unhealthy cholesterol levels.

The study involved more than 36,000 Americans. It came to some sobering conclusions about young adults with high blood pressure or elevated LDL cholesterol (the "b...

More Evidence Fried Food Ups Heart Disease, Stroke Risk

THURSDAY, July 11, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Check out the menus at any county fair -- corn dogs, fried Oreos, even fried butter -- and you'll quickly see that Americans love fried foods. But yet another study suggests that it's time to put that corn dog down.

The study found that eating fried foods increased the risk of heart attack and stroke. And the more fried foods you eat, the g...

More Evidence Supplements Won't Help the Heart

MONDAY, July 8, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- If you take supplements hoping to ward off a heart attack or stroke, yet another study suggests you could find better uses for your hard-earned dollars.

A review of 277 published studies found that most supplements won't protect you from cardiovascular disease or early death.

"The study carries a simple message -- do not waste your mo...

Soy's Heart Benefits Hold Steady Over Time, Review Finds

MONDAY, July 1, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration might soon revoke soy's longstanding claim to boost cardiovascular health.

But now comes long-term research that appears to bolster the notion that soy does indeed do a heart good.

Canadian researchers pored over the results of 46 separate trials. Their conclusion: "These data strongly support th...

Where a Woman's Fat Lies Hints at Future Heart Troubles

MONDAY, July 1, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- If you're an older woman, your heart disease risk might be shaped by the shape of your body.

Researchers report that if you look more like an apple than a pear, your chances of heart trouble are heightened, even if you are a normal weight.

Interestingly, women who carried their weight in their legs had a significantly lower ri...

Infections, Especially UTIs, May Be Triggers for Strokes

THURSDAY, June 27, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- A urinary tract infection might be more than just a painful nuisance for some, with new research suggesting it could raise the risk of stroke in vulnerable people.

The study of over 190,000 stroke patients found that the risk of suffering a stroke was heightened in the weeks and months following any infection that required a trip to the hosp...