Cardiovascular disease remained a priority in healthcare and has been in the spotlight throughout 2015. With new recommendations and treatment guidelines, improved molecules and significant advancement in interventional cardiology, a great deal has happened in cardiology. These are the top picks from Healthmanagement.org:
This year saw the release of findings from the SPRINT study that compared lowering blood pressure to 120mm Hg against the traditional target of 140mm Hg in high-risk patients. The trial was stopped early due to an increased number of cardiac events with the more lenient target. SPRINT findings are significant; intense BP control is important; and survival can increase with more aggressive treatment.
COFFEE AND FAT, NOT SO BAD
2015 also revealed that there is really no single randomised controlled trial that backs the advice to cut fat consumption to less than 30 percent and saturated fat to less than 10 percent. This year saw two major reversals - moderate coffee intake is okay and there is no need for limits on daily cholesterol. There was however, a consensus, that sugar promotes illness and that efforts should be made to reduce sugar consumption.
Read more: Coffee Drinkers Have Lower Mortality Risk
THE STATIN CONTROVERSY CONTINUES
Two more cholesterol lowering drugs were approved this year - evolocumab and alirocumab but the controversy regarding statins continued regardless of this fact. There are still concerns about the safety of drugs, possible side effects and the cost versus benefits of statin drugs still remains an issue.
Read more: Statins: A Double-Edged Sword
SAY NO TO BRIDGING
This year also finally concluded that there is no net benefit for bridging. Studies showed that bridging in fact results in higher bleeding rates and has no positive impact on lowering thrombotic events. While results are still not clear for high-risk patients, it is abundantly clear that for most patients, less is more and there is no need to put patients on "bridge" therapy.
STILL THE NUMBER ONE KILLER
This year too, cardiovascular disease remained a major health issue with heart disease and stroke being the No. 1 and No. 2 killers worldwide. New statistics from the American Heart Association's 2016 Heart Disease and Stroke Statistics Update were also released.
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