(1/366) Prevention and control of rheumatic fever and rheumatic heart disease: the Cuban experience (1986-1996-2002).

BACKGROUND: Rheumatic fever (RF) and rheumatic heart disease (RHD) are still major medical and public health problems mainly in developing countries. Pilot studies conducted during the last five decades in developed and developing countries indicated that the prevention and control of RF/RHD is possible. During the 1970s and 1980s, epidemiological studies were carried out in selected areas of Cuba in order to determine the prevalence and characteristics of RF/RHD, and to test several long-term strategies for prevention of the diseases. METHODS: Between 1986 and 1996 we carried out a comprehensive 10-year prevention programme in the Cuban province of Pinar del Rio and evaluated its efficacy five years later. The project included primary and secondary prevention of RF/RHD, training of personnel, health education, dissemination of information, community involvement and epidemiological surveillance. Permanent local and provincial RF/RHD registers were established at all hospitals, policlinics and family physicians in the province. Educational activities and training workshops were organised at provincial, local and health facility level. Thousands of pamphlets and hundreds of posters were distributed, and special programmes were broadcast on the public media to advertise the project. RESULTS: There was a progressive decline in the occurrence and severity of acute RF and RHD, with a marked decrease in the prevalence of RHD in school children from 2.27 patients per 1,000 children in 1986 to 0.24 per 1,000 in 1996. A marked and progressive decline was also seen in the incidence and severity of acute RF in five- to 25-year-olds, from 18.6 patients per 100,000 in 1986 to 2.5 per 100,000 in 1996. There was an even more marked reduction in recurrent attacks of RF from 6.4 to 0.4 patients per 100,000, as well as in the number and severity of patients requiring hospitalisation and surgical care. Regular compliance with secondary prophylaxis increased progressively and the direct costs related to treatment of RF/RHD decreased with time. The implementation of the programme did not incur much additional cost for healthcare. Five years after the project ended, most of the measures initiated at the start of the programme were still in place and occurrence of RF/RHD was low.  (+info)

(2/366) Assessment of techniques to reduce sclerosant foam migration during ultrasound-guided sclerotherapy of the great saphenous vein.


(3/366) Epidemic of chronic kidney disease in India -what can be done?

The exact prevalence of chronic kidney disease in India is not clear in the absence of regular national registry data and provided only by small observational series or rely on reports from personal experience, but the quality of data is quiet uneven. There are only three population based studies in India commenting on the magnitude of chronic kidney disease. In a prevention program started at community level in Chennai, the reported prevalence is 0.86% in the project population and 1.39% in the control region. The second study is based on Delhi involving 4972 urban patients. The prevalence of chronic renal failure (defined as serum creatinine more than 1.8 mg/dL) to be 0.79 % or 7852 per million/population. The third study perhaps the only longitudinal study to identify the incidence of end stage renal disease is based on 572,029 subjects residing in city of Bhopal suggests that the average crude and age adjusted incidence rates of end stage renal disease were 151 and 232 per million population respectively. The resources and skill for taking care of this large case load, both in terms of personal and health care infrastructure do not exist currently and would need to be created. To tackle the problem of limited access to renal replacement therapy, an important method would be to try and reduce the incidence of end stage renal disease and the need of renal replacement therapy by preventive measures. It is clear that treatment of chronic kidney disease and its advanced stage end stage renal disease is expensive and beyond the reach of average Indian. Thus it is crucial that prevention of chronic kidney disease has to be the goal of medical fraternity, government of India and the general public. This article suggests a series of primary, secondary and tertiary preventive measures for prevention of chronic kidney disease. Clearly there are already many effective and attractive interventions for the treatment and prevention of chronic kidney disease exist and many more surely be developed.  (+info)

(4/366) The use of high-sensitivity assays for C-reactive protein in clinical practice.


(5/366) Secondary prevention of stroke: using the experiences of patients and carers to inform the development of an educational resource.


(6/366) Sex differences in stroke.


(7/366) Metabolic syndrome is strongly associated with chronic subclinical inflammation in patients achieving optimal low-density lipoprotein-cholesterol levels in secondary prevention of cardiovascular disease.

BACKGROUND: The dual goals of low-density lipoprotein-cholesterol (LDL-C) and C-reactive protein (CRP) reduction are important for secondary prevention of cardiovascular disease. However, the relevant factors of subclinical inflammation in patients with optimal LDL-C were not clearly demonstrated. This study sought to test the hypothesis that the metabolic syndrome (MetS) is associated with subclinical inflammation in patients achieving optimal LDL-C. METHODS AND RESULTS: A total of 227 Japanese subjects with a prior history of ischemic heart disease and optimal LDL-C (LDL-C <100 mg/dl) were enrolled. When compared with patients with low CRP (<0.1 mg/dl), those with a high CRP (> or =0.1 mg/dl) had a significantly higher prevalence of visceral obesity, elevated triglyceride, lower high-density lipoprotein-cholesterol (HDL-C), hypertension, impaired fasting glucose, and a higher prevalence of MetS. A linear relationship between an increase in number of MetS components and CRP was observed (trend, p<0.001). In multivariate logistic analysis, visceral obesity (odds ratio 6.54; 95% confidence interval 2.99-14.3), low HDL-C (2.78; 1.09-7.12) and impaired fasting glucose (6.72; 3.30-13.7), and MetS (10.4; 5.18-20.7) were associated with higher CRP. CONCLUSIONS: MetS is well associated with higher CRP concentrations in patients who achieved optimal LDL-C levels.  (+info)

(8/366) Better survival with statin administration after revascularization therapy in Japanese patients with coronary artery disease: perspectives from the CREDO-Kyoto registry.

BACKGROUND: The importance of statins in cardiovascular prevention has been demonstrated in various patient subsets. This study aimed to evaluate the effects of statins on long-term outcomes of Japanese patients undergoing their first coronary revascularization. METHODS AND RESULTS: A total of 9,225 patients undergoing their first coronary revascularizations during 2000--2002 were divided into 2 groups according to the use of statins at discharge; patients with acute myocardial infarction were not included. Statins was administered to only 28.5% (n=2,630) of the patients. The median follow-up period was 3.5 years. Patients on statin therapy showed lower all-cause (5.2% vs 10.0%; p<0.0001) and cardiovascular (3.2% vs 6.2%; p<0.0001) mortality than those without statins (n=6,595) by Kaplan-Meier analysis and log-rank test. After adjustment by multivariate analysis according to 29 variables, statin therapy remained as an independent predictor of reduced all-cause (relative risk ratio (RR) 0.71, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.59-0.86, p=0.0005) and cardiovascular (RR 0.72, 95% CI 0.56-0.91, p=0.0067) mortality. The validity of RR of statin therapy in multivariate analysis was further confirmed by risk adjustment using propensity scores (all-cause mortality: propensity-adjusted RR 0.70, 95% CI 0.58-0.85, p=0.0003; cardiovascular mortality: propensity-adjusted RR 0.70, 95% CI 0.54-0.89, p=0.0038). CONCLUSIONS: Statin therapy started at hospital discharge was associated with increased chance of survival in Japanese patients undergoing their first coronary revascularization.  (+info)