March 2nd, 2011

Podcast 114: Guidelines for preventing cardiovascular disease in women

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We think you’ll find this of interest. The American Heart Association last month issued revised guidelines for preventing cardiovascular disease in women.

The change that hits you right off is the title’s shift from “Evidence-Based” to “Effectiveness-Based,” emphasizing the writing committee’s belief that the way things go in clinical trials doesn’t always hold in the more chaotic environment of daily practice.

Also of note is the fact that the committee wants clinicians to take women’s reproductive histories into account (they say, interestingly, that pre-eclampsia may be taken as an indicator of underlying inflammatory processes — a kind of proxy for a failed stress test, if you will). And depression, in their view, may be a signal of vulnerability to unhealthy lifestyle choices and an indicator of how adherent to treatment the patient will be, and so a screening for that condition is in order among women presenting with cardiovascular disease.

Join our conversation with the chair of the writing committee, Dr. Lori Mosca.

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