Thursday, December 27, 2012

Camera offers new view of the heart (USA)

Camera offers new view of the heart (USA)Colquitt Regional Medical Center, Georgia, USA, purchased a new D-SPECT Nuclear Myocardial Perfusion camera for use in the cardiology department. The new camera allows for advanced high-speed imaging of the heart while lowering the radiation dosage. According to the size of the patient, the system alters the time length of the scan and the dose administered to produce a sharper image quality each time the equipment is used for cardiac screenings. "This camera is ten times faster than the previous system we used," said David Spence, director of diagnostic imaging. "Images can be obtained in about 12 minutes compared to the older system that took 40 minutes allowing for better patient comfort and time for the scan acquisition of the heart. The images are of exceptionally high quality and allow for better interpretation of the patient’s heart." The system is designed like a chair with a camera that is stationary to the patient reducing motion. Patients with breathing difficulties can be scanned upright for all images. The system is also designed to accommodate patients weighing up to 500 pounds

Englishman wakes up from stroke speaking fluent Welsh

Englishman wakes up from stroke speaking fluent Welsh Alun Morgan, 81, was evacuated to Wales during the Second World War but left 70 years ago. During his time there he was surrounded by Welsh speakers but never learned the language himself. He left the country aged 10 and lived his life in England and recently suffered a severe stroke. But when Mr Morgan regained consciousness three weeks later, doctors discovered he was speaking Welsh and could not remember any English. It is thought that the Welsh Mr Morgan heard as a boy had sunk in without him knowing and was unlocked after he suffered the stroke. Mr Morgan, who is retired and lives with his wife Yvonne in Bathwick, Somerset, is now being taught to speak English again. "I'd not lived in Wales since I was evacuated there during the war. Gradually the English words came back, but it wasn't easy," he said

Monday, December 24, 2012

Alcohol used to induce heart attack to save man's life (UK)

Alcohol used to induce heart attack to save man's life (UK)Doctors saved a patient's life by inducing a controlled heart attack using neat alcohol to kill off an area of muscle. Ronald Aldom, 77, was suffering from a life threatening heart rhythm called ventricular tachycardia (VT) - which occurred as a result of a previous heart attack. A team of surgeons tried to treat the condition using standard procedures but were unable to safely perform them. The team decided to treat Mr Aldom, from Portishead near Bristol, with "ethanol ablation". The treatment has only been conducted a handful of times in the UK to treat VT, Dr Johnson said. The procedure involves passing a catheter to the heart from the groin which identifies which part of the heart the dangerous rhythms are coming from. A tiny balloon is then blown up in the heart artery supplying that area and a small amount of absolute alcohol is injected into the artery to produce a small controlled heart attack. This kills the area of the heart muscle causing the problem allowing the heart's rhythm to return to normal

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Winter 2013 Leisure Guide (Saskatoon)

The City of Saskatoon Leisure Guide is your community source for a variety of arts, culture, and recreational activities throughout the year. Select from Drop-in Programs, which do not require pre-registration and provide the public with access to the City’s recreation facilities and to instructor-led classes, or from Registered Programs, which include an instructor who leads the participants through a pre-defined set of activities

Men with big beer bellies likely to have weaker bones: study (USA)

Men with big beer bellies likely to have weaker bones: study (USA)Men with excessive fat around their abdomen, commonly known as a "beer belly," are at an elevated risk for heart disease and Type 2 diabetes, and now researchers are adding osteoporosis to the list of potential hazards. More than 37 million American men over age 20 are obese, according to the National Center for Health Statistics. While obesity is associated with a host of other health problems - hypertension, high cholesterol, asthma, sleep apnea and joint diseases - it has been widely accepted that overweight men were at a lower risk for bone loss. "Not true," said Dr. Miriam Bredella, a radiologist at Massachusetts General Hospital and an associate professor of radiology at Harvard Medical School. "Everyone thinks of osteoporosis as a disease of women. Studies all focused on women, and men were always thought to be fine. We specifically wanted to look at young men." Bredella and her team of researchers evaluated 35 obese men with a mean age of 34 and a mean body mass index, a measure of body fat, of 36.5. The men were divided into two groups: one with mainly subcutaneous fat, which lies just beneath the skin and is spread all over the body, and the other with mostly visceral or intra-abdominal fat, located deep under the muscle tissue in the abdominal cavity

TV in bedrooms may boost kids' risk of fat, disease (USA)

TV in bedrooms may boost kids' risk of fat, disease (USA)Kids who have TVs in their bedrooms are twice as likely to be fat and nearly three times as likely to be at risk for heart disease and diabetes as those who don't, according to a new study that renews concerns about health and screen time. Specifically, youngsters ages 5 to 18 who had TVs in their rooms were up to 2.5 times more likely than others to have bigger waists and more fat mass. Those who watched TV more than five hours a day were at twice the risk for fat around their internal organs, a dangerous precursor for disease. "It's really troubling to see these kids with fat around their heart and liver," said Amanda Staiano, a scientist with the Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge, La. Staiano and her colleagues knew that previous studies had shown a link among bedroom TVs, longer TV viewing and being overweight or obese, which affects two-thirds of U.S. youth. But in a country where 70 percent of kids have TVs in their rooms, according to a 2010 study, Staiano said they wanted to understand exactly where the kids were adding fat, and whether they were at risk for conditions such as heart disease and diabetes. "We wanted to see kind of a more precise relationship between TV and health," said Stainao, who studied 369 children and teens in Louisiana. Her findings are reported in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine

Friday, December 21, 2012

February is Heart Month (Canada)

February is Heart Month (Canada)Heart Month is the Heart and Stroke Foundation's key opportunity to reach millions of Canadians in February and alert them to the risks of heart disease and stroke. Today, heart disease and stroke take one life every 7 minutes and 90% of Canadians have at least one risk factor. Our hearts and bodies are fragile and no one is safe from the risk of heart disease and stroke. Yet, there is so much we can do to protect them. This is why it is so critical that we rally together in raising funds for life-giving research that can help extend the lives of all Canadians. Volunteers are the face and the voice of the Heart and Stroke Foundation and Heart Month is a critical time when we depend on you to share our message. One of the most important initiatives in Heart Month is door-to-door canvassing. Our team of volunteers canvasses neighborhoods across Canada raising vital funds to give Canadians longer, fuller lives. This is your opportunity to create a movement in your community - a movement toward better health. This broad, National campaign was inspired by a fundraising initiative called "Heart Sunday." The concept was adopted in British Columbia in the mid-1950s and then in Ontario in 1958. The funds raised from Heart Month are critical to supporting the Foundation's life-giving research and initiatives that help lengthen the lives of people in communities all over Canada - Phone: (306) 244-2124

Heart Health for Canadians: The Definitive Guide By Beth Abramson

 Heart Health for Canadians: The Definitive Guide By Beth Abramson Heart Health for Canadians is the definitive book on heart disease for the thousands of Canadian women and men who are diagnosed each year. It takes a full-spectrum approach to heart disease, covering prevention, symptoms, diagnosis, treatments, recovery, new research and alternative therapies. It educates Canadians on how to be better advocates for themselves and for their loved ones by offering support and guidance through our complicated healthcare system. And it offers more complete information on women's heart health. You never want a family member to be diagnosed with heart disease; but if it happens, you want Heart Health for Canadians by your side - HarperCollins

Monday, November 26, 2012

Smoking rots brain more than high blood pressure and being overweight

Smoking rots brain more than high blood pressure and being overweightSmoking rots the brain, causing brain damage that affects memory, learning and reasoning, a study has found. The research, by Kings College London, found smoking is worse for mental health than having high blood pressure or being overweight. The research; cardiovascular risk factors and cognitive decline in adults aged 50 and over: a population-based cohort study, found the risk of having a heart attack or stroke was associated with cognitive decline. According to the study, published in the journal Age and Ageing, smokers over the age of 50 who had high blood pressure were at greatest risk of suffering a stroke. This group also performed poorly on cognitive tasks that tested memory recall, verbal fluency and attention. A spokesperson from the Alzheimer's Society said: "We all know smoking, high blood pressure, high cholesterol levels and a high BMI is bad for our heart. This research adds to the huge amount of evidence that also suggests they can be bad for our head too

Sunday, November 25, 2012

CPR Makes You Undead (Canada)

In the case of a sudden cardiac arrest, every second counts. About 7,000 cardiac arrests occur in the province each year, according to data from the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Ontario. A person's chances of survival can be up to 75 per cent if rapid, early response is started at the scene using cardiopulmonary resuscitation and automated external defibrillation. Unfortunately, the rate of bystander participation seldom exceeds 30 per cent and AEDs are used in less than 10 per cent of cases. The survival rate for out-of-hospital cardiac arrests is less than 6 per cent, Heart and Stroke estimates based on its most recent data. It also notes the probability of survival declines by up to 10 per cent with every minute that passes. Last month, Heart and Stroke launched a public awareness campaign dubbed CPR Makes You Undead, which aims to increase bystander involvement in emergency and cardiac arrest situations. The goal of the campaign is to raise public awareness and promote hands-only CPR, foundation health promotion and public affairs director Mark Holland said. "We must do better and we can, if we all learn CPR."

Researchers modify ostrich artery for possible use in heart surgeries (Japan)

Researchers modify ostrich artery for possible use in heart surgeriesScientists said that they have modified ostrich carotid arteries that can eventually be developed for use in human patients undergoing coronary bypass surgery. Researchers at the National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center Research Institute said the long arteries found in the necks of the birds will one day be implanted in heart surgery patients instead of using patients' own vessels, as in conventional surgeries. The modified ostrich vessels are about 2 millimeters in diameter and about 30 centimeters long. The researchers said it is the first time such a long and thin vascular graft with a small inside diameter has been developed. When thin blood vessels are replaced with thicker ones, blood flow slows and the vessels become vulnerable to clotting. Atsushi Mahara and other researchers at the institute's biomedical engineering department had been studying the possibility of using the blood vessels of sharks and conducted experiments on laboratory rats. But when they applied an ostrich carotid artery this spring, its thinness and length were a perfect fit, the researchers said

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

CARG Newsletter - December 2012

The CARG Newsletter - December 2012 is now available online

Cholesterol test fasting "largely unnecessary" (Canada)

Cholesterol test fasting 'largely unnecessary' Fasting before getting a blood test of cholesterol levels may be unnecessary, a new Canadian study suggests. Current guidelines suggest taking blood samples for lipid tests like high-density lipoprotein or HDL cholesterol after fasting for nine to 12 hours, but the requirement isn't always practical for patients. Fasting for routine blood work may discourage patients from going for the tests and blood labs may have long wait times in the morning that inconvenience people even more. In the Archives of Internal Medicine, Dr. Davinder Sidhu and Dr. Christopher Naugler of the University of Calgary looked at how long 209,180 people in Calgary fasted and their lipid results. Last year, the city's laboratory service changed its policy allowing samples to be processed regardless of the fasting time. "We found that fasting time showed little association with lipid subclass levels in a large community-based cohort," the study's authors concluded. "This finding suggests that fasting for routine lipid level determinations is largely unnecessary."

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

CARG Christmas Parties 2012

The CARG Christmas Party in the Field House is scheduled for December 5, 2012, from 9:30am to 11:30am

The CARG Christmas Party at the Shaw Centre is scheduled for December 14, 2012, from 9:00am to 12 noon

"The clock is ticking for stroke patients" - Canada

Adults under the age of 50 are risking death or permanent disability far too often by not calling 9-1-1 or their local emergency number at the first sign of stroke, according to new data released by the Heart and Stroke Foundation and the Canadian Stroke Network. The rest of Canadians aren't doing much better. And that spells trouble because there are 50,000 strokes in Canada each year. "When it comes to stroke, there are two enemies: the clock and the clot," says stroke neurologist Dr. Michael Hill, who speaks on behalf of the Heart and Stroke Foundation and the Canadian Stroke Network. "Canadians need to understand that the clock starts ticking at the first signs of a stroke, and every second of delay leads to more brain cell death and greater risk of death or disability. "The statistics - collected from about 10,000 patient charts at 295 hospitals across Canada - found that half of all adults under the age of 50 took longer than eight hours to arrive at a hospital emergency department. Across all age groups, women took slightly longer than men to arrive at hospital

Mayo Clinic study finds that cardiac rehab reduces mortality by 45 percent

Randal J. Thomas, M.D., director of Mayo Clinic's Cardiovascular Health Clinic, and colleagues found that patients who participate in cardiac rehabilitation after having heart interventions such as angioplasty, stents and clot-busting drugs have a 45 percent lower mortality rate. The research team studied data from more than 2,300 patients between 1994 and 2008, and recently published the results in Circulation. Only about 40 percent of patients in the study participated in cardiac rehabilitation. These findings are particularly important for interventional cardiologists, Dr. Thomas says, because encouraging patients to pursue cardiac rehab after their procedure can potentially save more lives than previously thought

Monday, November 19, 2012

Albertans are taking better care of their heart health (Canada)

Albertans are taking better care of their heart health (Canada)Albertans are showing remarkable improvements in heart health thanks to a combination of better eating, increased fitness and much-improved medical treatments. According to new data collected from across the province from 2003 and 2010, the number of coronary artery bypass surgeries in the province fell from 84 per 100,000 people in 2003, to 42 in 2010 - a 50 per cent decline in per capita counts. As well, the number of cardiac catheterizations, in which a catheter is inserted into an artery or chamber of the heart to assess damage, also decreased from 480 per 100,000 in 2003 to 430 in 2010. Dr. Merrill Knudtson, a professor of medicine at the University of Calgary's Libin Cardiovascular Institute, says it's impressive the trend toward medical procedures has been on the decline for a number of years. "Albertans are doing better in terms of diet and exercise and they are smoking less, and we have the secondary evidence to suggest that," he said. Dr. Sean McMurtry, lead author of the research study and a cardiologist at the Mazankowski Alberta Heart Institute in Edmonton, explained that while the raw number of procedures haven't changed significantly, simply because of Alberta's population boom over the last decade, the per capita decline is meaningful

Sunday, November 18, 2012

CARG Board of Directors and Committee Chairs 2012-2013

The CARG Board of Directors and Committee Chairs for 2012-2013 are:


Blake Adamson; Ron Fleming; David Giesbrecht; Mary Green; Robert Klombies; James McKay; Florence Pavia; Betty Penner; Ruth Redden; Mohindar Sachdev; Alfred Schmidt; Myrna Helen Sprecker; Norma Tischler

Committee Chairs:

- Barbara Lussier prepares the "In Memorium" list

- Peter Scott is editor of the Newsletter

- Darlene Urban chairs the Heart Pillow Committee

- Victor Zapf chairs of the Social Committee

- Ruth Redden is a Director and also chairs the Hospital Visitation Committee

The following Board members retired at the 2012 AGM:

Howard Hrehirchuk; Orest Michalowski; Peter Scott; Gordon Shuttle; Curt Weberbauer

CARG wishes to thank the retiring members for their service and congratulate the new members on their election.

Breakfast sandwiches constrict blood flow within hours of eating: study

Breakfast sandwiches constrict blood flow within hours of eating: studyTalk about fast food - eat just one of those popular restaurant breakfast sandwiches and your body will be feeling the effects before noon. New research shows that just two hours after eating the combination of butter, bun, eggs, bacon, cheese and salt (containing a total of 900 calories and 50 g of fat) blood flow through the arms of a test group decreased by 15 to 20 per cent. Dr. Todd Anderson, Heart and Stroke Foundation researcher and speaking at the Canadian Cardiovascular Congress in Toronto, said it's uncertain exactly why the blood flow is temporarily impeded but that it's obvious "the body isn't happy" with what it's ingesting. He said it can be a number of reasons, including an excess of oxygen free radicals (created by the sandwich) that affect the blood vessels. "But the real question is: what's this doing to blood vessels over a period of time?" says Anderson, who is also the director of the Libin Cardiovascular Institute of Alberta and head of cardiac science at the University of Calgary. "We already know what too much fat intake does to one's health, but now we should consider this." Anderson described research out of his lab, led by Vincent Lee, where a group of non-smoking students were studied twice - once on a day they had no breakfast, once on a day after consuming two "commercially available" breakfast sandwiches. The objective: assess the acute effects of just one high-fat meal on microvascular function - an indicator of overall vascular (blood vessel) health. The measurement used is called the VTI (velocity time integral) and is taken using Doppler ultrasound

Flu shots may cut risk of heart attacks

Flu shots may cut risk of heart attacksThe annual flu shot is a notoriously tough sell, but what if the shots prevented heart attacks, too? New Canadian research suggests that the influenza vaccine significantly lowers the risk of heart attack, strokes and dying from heart disease. Toronto researchers who searched the medical literature back to the 1960s found that flu shots are associated with about a 50-per cent reduction in the risk of having a major cardiovascular "event" in the year following vaccination, for people with and without known coronary artery disease. "It's a pretty profound finding," said Dr. Jacob Udell, a cardiologist and clinician scientist at Toronto's Women's College Hospital and the University of Toronto. Udell was scheduled to present his team's findings at the 2012 Canadian Cardiovascular Congress meeting in Toronto

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Insulin dose through the nose - the end of injections for diabetics?

Scientists have developed a once-a-day nasal gel formulation for the delivery of insulin that could put an end to injections for Type 1 diabetes sufferers. In results published in the Royal Society of Chemistry journal Biomaterials Science, researchers show that the insulin-loaded gel reduces blood glucose levels over 24 hours in a diabetic-rat model when administered via the nose. Tests using mucus-producing cells to model conditions in the nose showed that eight times as much insulin was taken up by the cells when incubated with the insulin-loaded gel formulation, compared with a simple solution of insulin in water. Scientists performed further tests on the gel formulation using diabetic-rat models. Their results showed that the rats' blood glucose levels fell following nasal administration of the insulin-loaded gel and then took around 24 hours to return to their original values. By comparison, they found that it took only nine hours for blood glucose levels to return to their original values in control models treated with insulin by the normal route of subcutaneous injection

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Louis Horlick: December 2, 1921 - October 23, 2012 - obituary

Louis Horlick, OC, SOM, MD, FRCPC
Born December 2, 1921 in Montreal, Quebec, died October 23, 2012 in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. Mourned by his wife Ruth, four sons and their wives, Jonathan (Kathi), Andrew (Anne), Allan and Simon (Margo) and eight grandchildren, Sarah, Leah, Nicholas, Sam, Simon, Jay, Zoe and Abby. On October 7, 2012, he and Ruth celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary. His parents, Sophie Katz and Phillip Horlick, separately emigrated from Poland and Russia to New York City to escape religious persecution and make a new life. They met working in the NYC garment district sweat shops, married, and in 1910 immigrated to Montreal, Quebec. Louis was the fourth of seven siblings, predeceased by Jacob, David, Sam, Miriam and Sarah. He is survived by his sister Ruth Krashinsky. In Montreal, Louis attended Devonshire Public School, Baron Byng High School and, through scholarships and the assistance of his siblings, McGill University. He graduated in medicine from McGill in 1945 receiving the Holmes Gold Medal for the highest standing over 4 years of studies. Louis interned at the Montreal General Hospital, spent 2 years as a fellow in the Cardiovascular Institute at Michael Reese Hospital in Chicago where he began his career in medical research in the area of experimental atherosclerosis. He became a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada and the American College of Physicians in 1952. Louis completed his training in internal medicine and cardiology at McGill receiving an MSc. and Diploma in Internal Medicine (Experimental Medicine) in 1953.
Louis' goal was to work in academic medicine, and in 1954 he joined the staff of the Department of Medicine of the College of Medicine at the University of Saskatchewan, when it became a full four year degree granting institution. He had the privilege of teaching the first group of students to graduate in medicine from the UofS. Louis established the Division of Cardiology and its laboratories and developed a research program in atherosclerosis. From 1968 to 1974 he was Professor and Head of the Department of Medicine. He was a highly skilled clinician and treated patients from throughout Saskatchewan over the course of his 50+ years of medical practise at the Royal University Hospital in Saskatoon. He became Emeritus Professor in 1989 and continued to work in cardiology until earlier this year. He published more than 60 papers in scientific journals and gave many papers at scientific meetings in his area of research, cholesterol and atherosclerosis. He was recognized internationally for his research. Louis wrote and edited 3 books dealing with the history of the Uof S College of Medicine and the Royal University Hospital. The first, Medical College to Community Resource: Saskatchewan's Medical School, 1978-1998, added to the history of the first 50 years (1926-1978) of the medical college written by Louis' medical colleague Dr. D. J. Buchan in Greenhouse to Medical Centre. The 2nd, They Built Better Than They Knew: Saskatchewan's Royal University Hospital, 1995-1992 appeared under Louis' name. The third, J. Wendell Macleod, Saskatchewan's Red Dean, was a biography of the man who played a critical role in establishing both the new College of Medicine and the University Hospital.
Louis had the honour and privilege to be involved in many of the important institutions which make up Canadian medicine. He served as a Member of the Medical Research Council of Canada, as Member of the Medical Council of Canada, and as Member of Council and Vice President (Medicine) of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. He was a Member of the Saskatchewan Health Research Board and served as Vice-Chairman of that Board. He served as Chairman of the Canadian Council on Hospital Accreditation and served on the UofS Board of Governors.
Recognized for his scholarship and contributions to Canadian Medical research, Louis was the recipient of many awards, including: National Health Scientist Award 1975; National Volunteer Award 1988; Saskatchewan Order of Merit 1991; James Graham Award, Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada 1991; Annual Achievement Award, Canadian Cardiovascular Society 1992; Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada Award of Scientific Merit 1994; and Officer of the Order of Canada 1995.
Louis was immensely proud of the Royal University Hospital, the UofS, and especially the College of Medicine where he trained hundreds of physicians who practise throughout Canada. Louis loved teaching medicine and took much satisfaction in the success of UofS medical graduates. He and Ruth embraced Saskatoon as their new home in 1954 and Saskatchewan provided them with many opportunities for which they remain grateful. Together they made many contributions to the cultural life in Saskatoon. A lover of music, he supported the Saskatoon Symphony and sang in the University Chorus. As a long- time volunteer with the Saskatchewan Heart and Stroke Foundation and with their support, Louis Horlick was instrumental in persuading the City of Saskatoon to establish a 9-1-1 emergency system that is relied on every day by over 240,000 Saskatonians. Funeral Service at 1:00 p.m. Friday, October 26, 2012 at Congregation Agudas Israel, 715 McKinnon Ave., Saskatoon. In memory of Louis Horlick contributions to the Saskatchewan Heart and Stroke Foundation are welcomed.

Ontario doctors launch assault on obesity, urging tobacco-like warnings on bad food

Ontario doctors launch assault on obesity, urging tobacco-like warnings on bad foodOntario doctors have launched an assault on obesity, saying society should aggressively fight the epidemic using the tools that have made major inroads in the battle against smoking. The campaign calls for graphic warnings - like the ones tobacco companies must print on cigarette packages - on high-calorie, low-nutritional value foods such as sugar-sweetened soft drinks, french fries and even fruit juices. It also calls for higher taxes on sugary or fatty foods, lower taxes on healthy foods, and restrictions on sales of junk foods in sports venues and other recreational facilities used by children and teenagers. The types of changes needed to fight obesity won't come into effect overnight, Dr. Doug Weir, president of the Ontario Medical Association, admitted at a news conference. But Weir said society needs to start addressing obesity or it will face epidemic levels of weight-induced illnesses, including Type 2 diabetes, heart disease and some cancers

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

New Cross Hospital leads the way with pioneering robotic heart surgery (UK)

New Cross Hospital leads the way with pioneering robotic heart surgery (UK)Pioneering robotic heart surgery which reduces recovery time from months to weeks has been performed for the first time in the UK at Wolverhampton's New Cross Hospital. Surgeons carried out the open heart operation - which involves directing four robot arms from a separate console - in the hospital's renowned Heart and Lung Centre. The procedure is more common in America, where the Da Vinci robotic technology was developed, but only currently available at two other hospitals in Europe, in Finland and Sweden. A tiny camera on the end of an arm - which can rotate up to 540 degrees - gives surgeons unrivalled views of the heart, while surgical metal 'fingers' do the crucial work required.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

CARG Newsletter - November 2012

The CARG Newsletter - November 2012 is now available online

The University of Saskatchewan awards Dr. Bruce McManus with the 2012 Alumni Achievement Award

Dr. Bruce McManus, the Director of the PROOF Centre has received the 2012 Alumni Achievement Award from the University of Saskatchewan. Dr. McManus received BA and MD degrees from the University of Saskatchewan. His time at the University of Saskatchewan blazed the way for a brilliant career in cardiovascular pathology and translational research. He earned an MSc in Applied Physiology from Pennsylvania State University, a PhD in Exercise Physiology and Biochemistry from the University of Toledo, and pursued post-doctoral fellowships in Environmental Physiology at the University of California, and in Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Pathology at the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute in Bethesda, MD. Dr. McManus completed his residency training in Internal Medicine and Anatomic Pathology at the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital at Harvard University. The Alumni Awards Reception to recognize this year's award recipients will be held on November 2, 2012, at the Delta Bessborough Hotel in Saskatoon

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Ottawa stroke expert named to Canadian Medical Hall of Fame

Ottawa stroke expert named to Canadian Medical Hall of FameAntoine Hakim, a neurologist whose work has led to improved prevention and treatment of stroke in Canada, is among six medical heroes named to the Canadian Medical Hall of Fame. "I'm sort of floating," Hakim, 70, said in a phone interview from Brazil. "This is a terrific honour." Hakim heads the neuroscience program at The Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, and is a professor of neurology at University of Ottawa. In 2000, he founded the Canadian Stroke Network, which brings together researchers, government and industry with the goal of reducing the burden of stroke on people and health care budgets. Hakim and his network team, with the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada, promoted the Canadian Stroke Strategy in 2005. That initiative transformed care across the country. Within five years, Ontario alone saw stroke patient admissions decrease by 11 per cent and referrals to stroke prevention clinics increase by 34 per cent

Reflections from Ruth Redden

Reflections from Ruth ReddenIn March of 2002 I suffered a heart attack and became part of the rehabilitation program at the Field House approximately one month of being released from hospital. While in intensive care I was given literature about the CARG program at the Field house by one of the educational nurses as well as a dietician who encouraged me to get involved in the program offered as soon as I was able.

I took the education program offered by the nurse educators and began the "Yellow Shirt" program. Due to the severity of my event, I had a long recovery road ahead.

I continued to participate in the walking program as much as possible until I had bypass surgery and mitral valve replacement in December of 2002.

It took me approximately one year to earn my "Red Shirt", and all during that time I had support from the staff at the field house, encouraging me to continue and not give up.

During the past ten years, I met a number of people who have become valued friends and continue to be a great support to me some ten years later. As I realized the value of the program, I became involved as a volunteer in various areas of our program in Saskatoon as well as various other related programs within the Saskatoon Health Region and the Heart & Stroke Foundation who all support the rehab program here.

I have not had the good fortune to have a dedicated support walker with me and cannot emphasize enough how important this is for a patient to have - to encourage and prod you on when you don't feel like exercising. Somehow the laps seem shorter when you have someone walking with you.

We are so fortunate in this city that Dr. Merriman, Dr. Horlick and the many dedicated doctors and therapists had the foresight to implement this program, knowing that exercise would be beneficial to recovering heart patients. There are very few programs that are as comprehensive as the one here in Saskatoon. (Photo taken at the CARG Christmas party, 2008)

Friday, October 19, 2012

A daily brisk walk halves heart attack risk (UK)

A daily brisk walk halves heart attack risk (UK)People who go on a fast daily walk have been found to have a 50 per cent lower chance of having a heart attack or stroke than those who don't. This power walking was even found to be more effective than jogging, which lowered it by 40 per cent. Walking daily but at a leisurely pace was found to have little to no effect on heart attack or stroke risk, suggesting it's intensity rather than time when it comes to exercise. The findings were published by Danish scientists in the BMJ Open. They spent a decade studying the health of 4,000 volunteers aged between 21 and 98. The scientists compared the chances of developing 'metabolic syndrome', a term that collectively describes a number of conditions including obesity, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. Those with metabolic syndrome are more likely to suffer from heart attack or stroke as they get older. The report stated: "Significantly lower risk of metabolic syndrome was found in the moderately and highly physically active groups compared to their sedentary counterparts." But the team added: "Light physical activity and even more than one hour of walking daily did not confer protection against metabolic syndrome." The important difference between a slow stroll and a more intense brisk or 'power' walk is that a faster walk increases the heart rate. The heart is a muscle, so it needs working out and getting it to move faster is the key to preventing heart attack and stroke. Senior Cardiac Nurse at the British Heart Foundation Maureen Talbot said: "If you want to make the walk to work or to the shops part of keeping your heart healthy then try turning it from a leisurely stroll into a power walk to get the benefits."

Huge fall in deadly heart attacks (UK)

Heart attack deaths have halved in less than a decade, according to a major study of over 800,000 patients in England. The research has been extensively reported, with news sources suggesting a range of possible reasons, such as better treatments and a reduction in numbers of people smoking. As the study itself points out, many developed countries have seen reductions in heart-related death over the last 40 years, but it is unclear whether the trend is due to better treatment following a heart attack or steps designed to prevent heart attacks in the first place. This new study found that in England the death rate from heart attacks halved between 2002 and 2010. The researchers calculated that just over half this decline was caused by fewer people having heart attacks and just under half by more people who had heart attacks surviving. The study was carried out by researchers from the University of Oxford's Department of Public Health. The individual authors were funded by various institutions, including the Medical Research Council and the British Heart Foundation. Part of the research was funded by the National Institute for Health Research. The study was published in the peer-reviewed British Medical Journal. Newspapers generally covered the research accurately and appropriately

Good Samaritan gives CPR to Canadian tourist suffering heart attack in midtown (USA)

Good Samaritan gives CPR to Canadian tourist suffering heart attack in midtown (USA) The family of a Canadian tourist who suffered a heart attack in midtown want to say "thank you" the stranger who saved his life. Relatives of Jason Kroft, a Toronto lawyer, have put up fliers around 6th Ave. and 45th St. hoping the good Samaritan works in the area and will come forward. Kroft, 40, was visiting family in Manhattan on October 5th when he clutched his chest and fell to his knees, his brother Ryan Kroft told ABC. The family called 911, but with no time to spare, a stranger emerged from the crowd. "The man appeared and asked a few questions and the next thing I knew he was giving mouth-to-mouth," Kroft said. As the ambulance arrived, Jason Kroft's wife, two daughters and brother rushed to see him into the ambulance. The life-saving stranger had already disappeared into the crowd. The family has only been able to identify the man as red-haired, in his 40's, and wearing a blue jacket and dress pants. Kroft was recovering after open-heart surgery at St. Luke's Hospital. "We would definitely like to find the guy and thank him, but if he doesn't want to be identified, we don't want to force him," Ryan Kroft said

Research: Statins cause heart disease

New research shows that statins, drugs which lower cholesterol, cause heart disease. These drugs cause calcified plaques to form in coronary arteries in humans, thus causing or worsening heart disease. A new study shows that the use of statins increases calcified plaque in coronary arteries. Coronary artery calcification is a measure of coronary atherosclerosis, predicts coronary heart disease, and has been described as the strongest predictor of cardiac risk in patients with no symptoms. The study was led by Ryo Nakazato of the Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute and Department of Imaging, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles and examined 6673 subjects with no known coronary heart disease. One group of 2413 was on statins and another group of 4260 wasn't on statins. Those who used statins had a higher prevalence of obstructive coronary artery disease and a higher number of coronary segments that had calcified plaques. The study was published in the journal Atherosclerosis. Another recent study on diabetic subjects with advanced atherosclerosis also shows that frequent statin use causes accelerated coronary artery calcification. The study, published in the journal Diabetes Care, also shows that in those who weren't initially using statins, the progression of coronary and abdominal artery calcification was significantly increased in those who used statins frequently. Furthermore, another new study published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology Foundation Cardiovascular Imaging also shows that CAC is associated with heart failure. Thus statin drugs can cause coronary heart disease by increasing coronary artery calcification in healthy and diabetic subjects. Previous research has also shown that statins don't reduce the risk of all-cause mortality. Because coronary artery calcification strongly predicts coronary heart disease, and statins increase artery calcification, their wide-spread use must be questioned. If you use statins, discuss their use with your doctor, and preferably with a cardiologist. CAC can be determined with electron beam computed tomography or multidetector computed tomography scan. Ask your cardiologist to undergo CAC scoring so you can evaluate the effects of the statins on your arteries and to make an educated decision if you should discontinue them or not

Hearts & Goals (UK)

Hearts & Goals (UK)Fabrice Muamba has launched a new campaign to help prevent and treat sudden cardiac arrests. The former Arsenal, Birmingham and England Under-21 player suffered a cardiac arrest during Bolton's FA Cup tie against Tottenham at White Hart Lane last season. The midfielder's heart stopped for 78 minutes but the attention of medical staff from both clubs, a cardiologist who was attending the game as a fan and doctors at the London Chest Hospital saved his life. Now retired from football on medical advice, Muamba, 24, is involved in a year-long campaign, Hearts & Goals, to raise awareness. He is aiming to provide 500 defibrillators along with training for cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) to football clubs. "I am really pleased to be able to lead this campaign," he said. "I was staggered to find out that 100,000 people a year die from sudden cardiac arrest. "Anyone suffering from a sudden cardiac arrest who is treated with CPR and a defibrillator is ten times more likely to survive than just having CPR alone. "We have got a number of key initiatives, such as providing CPR training, and I will be learning how to use an AED (Automated external defibrillator), and I hope that we can create something really good from this campaign." The campaign is being supported by Bolton Wanderers and Arrhythmia Alliance, the heart rhythm charity

Monday, October 15, 2012

New Saskatchewan Research Chair in Clinical Stroke Research

New Saskatchewan Research Chair in Clinical Stroke ResearchSaskatoon brain surgeon and U of S medical researcher Dr. Michael Kelly has been awarded the Saskatchewan Research Chair in Clinical Stroke Research to pursue his work in the operating room and at the Canadian Light Source synchrotron to advance understanding of strokes and improve prevention and treatment. "The creation of this Chair in Clinical Stoke Research increases our health research capacity and enables collaboration toward Saskatchewan solutions in dealing with strokes, which have a devastating effect on individuals and their families," said Rob Norris, Saskatoon Greystone MLA on behalf of Health Minister Dustin Duncan. The chair will provide $1 million over five years, jointly funded by SHRF and HSF. The U of S will provide an additional $200,000 for equipment and personnel costs, as well as providing protected research time and salary. The Saskatoon Health Region is also providing contributions through additional access to equipment, facilities and personnel

Sitting for long periods 'increases risk of chronic illness'

Sitting for long periods 'increases risk of chronic illness'People who regularly sit around for long periods of time may be more likely to develop diabetes and heart disease, a study has found. Researchers at the University of Leicester and Loughborough University analysed the results of 18 previous studies involving almost 800,000 people. They found that sitting for protracted periods of time was associated with a twofold increase in a person's risk of diabetes, heart disease and death. These associations were still apparent in people who did the recommended amount of moderate-to-vigorous exercise in the times when they were not sitting down

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Strokes in young people 'rising', study finds (USA)

A new study shows that the risk for stroke is becoming more common among people younger than 55 years old. The study, supported by National Institutes of Health and published in the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology, found that strokes among people under 55 made up a greater percentage of all strokes over time, growing from about 13 percent in 1993-94 to 19 percent in 2005. "The reasons for this trend could be a rise in risk factors such as diabetes, obesity and high cholesterol," said study author Brett Kissela, MD, MS, with the University Of Cincinnati College Of Medicine in Ohio and a Fellow of the American Academy of Neurology

Anniversary joy for heart-transplant Kaylee (UK)

Anniversary joy for heart-transplant Kaylee (UK)Transplant baby Kaylee Davidson-Olley is celebrating a quarter of a century since her historic operation. The Houghton woman became the first UK baby to successfully survive a heart transplant when at five months old, she underwent the procedure at the Freeman Hospital in Newcastle. Despite experiencing such trauma at a young age, Kaylee has gone on to lead a normal life, combining work as a sales adviser at Marks & Spencer and competing in the World Transplant Games, while also studying at college. Ahead of the anniversary, Kaylee, 25, speaking as she met 30 other transplant patients, said: "I cannot believe that I am fit and healthy 25 years after my heart transplant." "This was only made possible because of the generosity of a family who made that important decision about organ donation, a decision that saved my life. "Without that family discussing organ donation, I simply would not be here"

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Teen smoking linked to earlier death

Teenagers who smoke are more likely to die of heart disease decades down the line, even if they quit by the time they're middle-aged, researchers have found. Still, the worst off were people who started smoking in adolescence and kept up the habit their entire lives. They were twice as likely to die early as were non-smokers, according to findings published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. "The risks are cumulative," said David Batty, who worked on the new study at University College London. "If you smoke across a life course, you're at much higher risk than if you just smoked around the college years," he told Reuters Health. "The positive message is, it's never too late to stop."

Monday, October 1, 2012

Fat-rich 'cafeteria diets' setting Canada's youth up for premature strokes, researchers warn

Fat- and calorie-rich junk-food diets are leading to typically middle-age diseases in children and setting them up for potential strokes when they're in their 30s and 40s, Canadian researchers are warning. What's more, the ongoing research suggests junk-food diets may alter the brain's anatomy, prematurely aging and damaging the network of blood vessels that supply it with oxygen. "If you go into any children's hospital in Canada today, and you ask, 'What’s going on with our young children?' they'll tell you that a lot of the kids they're seeing now are diabetic, they're hypertensive, they have altered lipids (blood fats)," said Dr. Dale Corbett, scientific director of the Heart and Stroke Foundation Centre for Stroke Recovery and professor of neurosciences at the University of Ottawa. "This used to happen in middle age and now it's happening in very young people. It's really a ticking time bomb." Close to one-third of children ages five to 17 - 1.6 million youth in Canada - are overweight or obese, according to a recent report from Statistics Canada

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Walkable neighbourhoods tied to lower diabetes risk (Canada)

People living in communities that lend themselves to walking had a significantly lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes than those living in the least walkable neighbourhoods in a large new study from Canada. "If you have fewer opportunities for physical activity in your daily life, then you may gain more weight...and you're also more likely to develop diabetes," said Dr. Gillian Booth, the lead author and a researcher at St. Michael's Hospital in Toronto. Booth said earlier studies have looked at potential links between diabetes and the pedestrian-friendliness of neighbourhoods, and have found similar connections - but that research took only a snapshot in time, making it difficult to determine which came first, the neighbourhood style or the elevated diabetes risk. With the world's population increasingly concentrated in cities, Booth and her colleagues wanted to further tease apart the relationship between urban environment and health. New immigrants from less developed countries to urban areas like Toronto are at particular risk for falling into a sedentary lifestyle and falling prey to Western lifestyle diseases, Booth's team notes in the journal Diabetes Care

Sunday, September 23, 2012

CARG Newsletter - October 2012

The CARG Newsletter - October 2012 is now available online

Influenza immunization clinics will begin on October 9, 2012 (Saskatoon)

Seasonal Influenza Immunization begins on October 11, 2011All ages benefit from annual influenza vaccine but it is important those considered at high risk be immunized

People at high risk of complications or hospitalization:

* People 65 years of age or older (or turn 65 prior to March 31, 2013)
* Pregnant women in all trimesters
* Children 6 months up to and including 59 months of age (younger than 5 years old)
* People who are severely obese
* People of any age who are residents of nursing homes and other chronic care facilities
* Anyone with chronic health conditions

Household and close contacts:

* Of any of the categories listed above
* Of infants less than 6 months of age
* Households expecting a newborn before March 31, 2013

Other groups:

* Healthcare providers, students and registered volunteers
* Physicians and medical office staff
* People providing regular child care to children less than 5 years of age, whether in or out of the home
* People employed in the poultry and hog industry

If you have any questions, contact the Saskatoon Health Region at 655-4620

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Men's Cooking Classes – Level 1 - Saskatoon Council on Aging

Men's Cooking Classes – Level 1 - Saskatoon Council on AgingIn the 4 sessions participants will have a hand in making meals for one or two people using time tested recipes combined with new technology and techniques. Included in the cost are 4 meals and a copy of the Living Simply cookbook.
Location: Grace Westminster Church. Times: 4:00‐6:30pm Cost: $50.00 1. October 9, 16, 23, 30 or 2. November 6, 13, 20, 27

Volunteer for the 2013 Heart Month Campaign (Saskatchewan)

Volunteer for the 2013 Heart Month Campaign (Saskatchewan)Heart disease and stroke take 1 in 3 Canadians before their time and it is the #1 killer of women. This February, more than 85,000 volunteers canvassed door-to-door across the country to help change these statistics. Thank you for your support this Heart Month. We value your commitment to the Foundation. Every dollar you raised helped to give Canadians time for more experiences, more memories and more life. Join us by volunteering in your neighborhood for the 2013 Heart Month Campaign next February. If you register for the 2013 Heart Month Campaign before 11:59pm, October 31st, you'll be automatically entered into a contest to win a 3-in-1 Reversible Griddle/Grill, generously donated by Hamilton Beach. Register online or call H&S at 244-2124

13th Annual Spotlight on Seniors (Saskatoon)

13th Annual Spotlight on Seniors (Saskatoon)The goal of Spotlight on Seniors is to educate and entertain the Senior Citizens in and around Saskatoon. From pastimes to investing, from career to vacations, from education to retirement, what we do with our lives is incorporated into this showcase. And, as the theme of this showcase is to promote a healthy, vibrant and exciting lifestyle for Seniors, who wouldn't want to be part of this show!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Grand Salon, TCU Place, 35 22nd St. East, Saskatoon
Admission: $5.00

If you would like to become a sponsor for Spotlight on Seniors 2012 download sponsorship package or phone Virginia at 652-2255 for more information

Craving Change(TM) - changing your relationship with food

Craving Change(TM) - changing your relationship with foodCraving Change(TM) - changing your relationship with food - presented free of charge by LiveWell Dietitians

Understand why you eat the way you do: Comfort yourself without food - Change your thinking - Change your eating - Most beneficial to attend all 4 sessions

Fall dates for the Field House:
Monday, October 15 and 22, 9:30 - 11:30
Monday, November 5 and 19, 9:30 - 11:30

Please call 655-LIVE or 655-5483 to register
For more information, please call Rochelle at 655-2140

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

CARG Annual General Meeting 2012

The Annual General Meeting of the Coronary Artery Rehabilitation Group will be held at 9:15 AM on November 14, 2012 in Meeting Room 2, Field House Saskatoon, SK. CARG is your organization; please come to the AGM and participate in it to make the organization like you would like to see it. Agenda:

Date: Wednesday, November 14, 2012
Place: Saskatoon Field House, Meeting Room No. 2
Time: 9:15 AM
1. Call to Order
2. Adoption of Agenda
3. Welcome "In Memoriam"
4. Approval of Minutes of the EGM held on October 29, 2010
5. Business Arising from the Minutes of 2012 EGM
6. Amendments to Bylaw 1 of CARG*
7. Reports
8. Approval of Budget for 2012-2013 financial year
9. Approval of Auditors for 2012-2013 financial year
10. Election of CARG Board of Directors for 2012-2013 year
11. Old Business
12. New Business
13. Adjournment

* The proposed constitution and bylaws will be distributed with the handout material for the AGM. The members will have an opportunity to review the proposed constitution and bylaws and submit amendments to the proposed constitution and bylaws. An Extraordinary General Meeting will be held in February 2013 for considering the revised constitution and bylaws

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Stressed at work? Look out for your heart

People who have highly demanding jobs and little freedom to make decisions are 23 per cent more likely to have a heart attack compared with their less stressed out colleagues, according to research recently published. But lighting up a cigarette or remaining chained to your desk rather than getting out to do some exercise is far more damaging for your heart health, researchers said. A study of nearly 200,000 people from seven European countries found around 3.4 per cent of heart attacks can be attributed to job strain - a significant proportion, but far less than the 36 per cent attributable to smoking and 12 per cent put down to lack of exercise. For the study, which was published online in The Lancet medical journal, researchers analysed job strain in employees who had no previous coronary heart disease

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Busted: co-author of flawed Stanford organic study has deep ties to big tobacco’s anti-science propaganda

Busted: co-author of flawed Stanford organic study has deep ties to big tobacco’s anti-science propagandaOver the last several days, the mainstream media has fallen for an elaborate scientific hoax that sought to destroy the credibility of organic foods by claiming they are "no healthier" than conventional foods (grown with pesticides and GMOs). NaturalNews and NaturalSociety have learned one of the key co-authors of the study, Dr. Ingram Olkin, has a deep history as an "anti-science" propagandist working for Big Tobacco. Stanford University has also been found to have deep financial ties to Cargill, a powerful proponent of genetically engineered foods and an enemy of GMO labeling Proposition 37. The New York Times, BBC and all the other publications that printed stories based on this Stanford study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine have been victims of an elaborate scientific hoax carried out by corporate propagandists posing as "scientists."

"Stoptober" anti-smoking campaign launched by Government (UK)

Britain's eight million smokers will be encouraged to kick the habit for 28 days from October 1 as part of Stoptober, the Department of Health announced. England's Chief Medical Officer Professor Dame Sally Davies said it was the first time that the Government had launched a "mass quit attempt". The initiative, backed by Cancer Research UK and British Heart Foundation, will involve television and radio adverts, a daily messaging service and roadshows around the country. Professor Dame Sally Davies said: "Smoking is still the biggest cause of premature death in England, taking more than 100,000 lives in the UK every year. "This is the first time that we have launched a mass quit attempt like Stoptober and would encourage people who want to quit to get involved."

Innovative heart clip improves quality of life (Canada)

Innovative heart clip improves quality of life (Canada)A simple clip device to treat mitral regurgitation, a form of heart valve failure, is providing a new option for patients with severe symptoms who thought they were out of treatment options. The mitral valve separates the upper and lower chambers on the left side of the heart and is designed to ensure that blood flows only in one direction from the left ventricle to the rest of the body. When this valve does not close as tightly as it should, a condition known as mitral regurgitation, blood leaks backward from the pumping chamber into the left atrium. As a result, the heart has to work harder to pump blood around the body, leading to fatigue, shortness of breath, irregular pulse and other symptoms. Eventually, if left untreated, severe mitral valve regurgitation can cause irreversible heart failure

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Duration of resuscitation efforts and survival after in-hospital cardiac arrest: an observational study

Duration of in-hospital resuscitationNew research suggests that increasing the duration of resuscitation efforts could improve survival in patients who arrest in hospital, challenging the common belief that extending resuscitation in patients who do not respond immediately is often futile. Zachary Goldberger and colleagues have used the American Heart Association's Get with the Guidelines - Resuscitation registry (globally, the largest in-hospital cardiac arrest registry) to assess the duration of resuscitation before termination of efforts in non-survivors as an indicator of the overall tendency of a hospital to attempt resuscitation for longer - The Lancet

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Upcoming LiveWell With Chronic Conditions Classes (Saskatoon Health Region)

Health-care costs hit the elderly hard, diminish financial wellbeing (USA)

The protection of the savings of the elderly - one of the primary goals of Medicare - is under threat from a combination of spiraling healthcare costs and increased longevity. As the government attempts to reduce Medicare costs, one suggestion is that the elderly could pay a larger proportion of the costs of their healthcare. But exactly how much would this be and what impact would it have on their finances? A new study by Amy Kelley at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine and her colleagues, funded by the National Institute on Aging, aims to identify the portion of wealth Medicare beneficiaries spend on healthcare costs in the last five years of life. Their work appears online in the Journal of General Internal Medicine. Medicare provides nearly universal health care coverage to the population over 65. However it does not pay for everything. There are co-payments and deductibles, and more importantly, homecare services and non-rehabilitative nursing home care, which are not covered. If proposals suggest the elderly should make even larger contributions to care, it is important to know more about patients' out-of-pocket spending under the current Medicare program

Crestor tops list for risk of muscle-related side effects

Crestor tops list for risk of muscle-related side effectsRosuvastatin (Crestor, AstraZeneca) had a higher risk rate for muscle-related side effects than five other leading statins in an analysis of seven years of FDA adverse case reports. Higher potency agents were associated with elevated relative risk of adverse events, according to researchers, who recommended that physicians consider potency when prescribing statins to manage cholesterol. The results were published online August 22 in PLOS One

Friday, August 31, 2012

Hula found to be a promising cardiac rehabilitation therapy

Hula found to be a promising cardiac rehabilitation therapyFor the first time ever, researchers have determined the metabolic equivalent for hula in a study that shows the Native Hawaiian dance form can be an effective and engaging cardiac rehabilitation therapy. Researchers from the University of Hawaii John A. Burns School of Medicine and The Queen's Medical Center in Honolulu presented preliminary findings to the participants of the study on August 28, 2012. The Hula Empowering Lifestyle Adaptations study followed 60 participants, all of whom had suffered heart attack, heart failure or undergone heart surgery within two to 12 weeks before the study five-year research project began

Intense workouts may be safe for heart patients: study

Moderate levels of exercise are often prescribed for people recovering from a heart attack or heart surgery, but a new study finds that pumping up workouts to high intensity levels might be a safe option too. Among 4,800 Norwegian heart patients, who racked up a combined total of over 170,000 hours of aerobic exercise, researchers found three cardiac arrests occurred during workouts and only one was fatal. The number was too small to say for sure that high impact workouts are just as safe as moderate ones, but they show the overall risk of exercise bringing on cardiac arrest is fairly low, according to the authors. "I think we're on the right track, but before we make it a standard recommendation, let's get our safety data," said Dr. Steven Keteyian, the director of preventive cardiology at Henry Ford Hospital in Michigan, who was not involved in the study

A millimeter-scale, wirelessly powered cardiac device (USA)

A team of engineers at Stanford has demonstrated the feasibility of a super-small, implantable cardiac device that gets its power not from batteries, but from radio waves transmitted from outside the body. The implanted device is contained in a cube just eight-tenths of a millimeter in radius. It could fit on the head of pin

Australian doctor pioneered full rehabilitation of heart attack patients

Alan Goble was the first Australian cardiologist to recognise the importance of cardiac rehabilitation programs and the need for funding to support them. He was the founder and initial chairman of the Heart Research Centre after it moved out of the National Heart Foundation in 1993 to be a stand-alone organisation; in 1989, he and Marian Worcester had set up the Centre for Social and Preventive Cardiology as part of the NHF (now the Heart Foundation). Alan James Goble was born on July 7, 1925, in Folkestone, Kent, second of three sons of one of the founders of the RAAF, Air Vice-Marshal Stanley Goble, and his wife, Kathleen (nee Wodehouse). He went to Trinity Grammar, Kew, before arriving at Trinity College, Melbourne University. He graduated in 1948 with an MBBS with honours, earned his MD in 1952, and gained his FRACP in 1960 and his FRCP in 1977. Goble's career in cardiology began at the Royal Melbourne Hospital with his appointment to the cardiac clinic in 1956. In 1961, he was appointed honorary cardiologist - the first such appointment at a major public hospital

Sudden cardiac death less likely after exercise, study says

People whose hearts stop functioning during or shortly after exercising are three times more likely to survive than those who have cardiac arrest unrelated to working out, researchers said. The Amsterdam Resuscitation Study looked at 2,517 cardiac- arrest cases in the Dutch capital's greater metropolitan area over a three-year period. Scientists found 145 of the patients were exercising during or within one hour of cardiac arrest and were mostly biking, playing tennis, working out at a gym or swimming, according to the research presented today at the European Society of Cardiology conference in Munich

Active pensioners 'add six years'

Being active and living a healthy lifestyle into your seventies can make a huge difference to your life expectancy, a Swedish study suggests. Academics at Sweden's Karolinska Institute analysed the lifestyles of 1,810 people over 75. The findings, on the British Medical Journal website, said men with the healthiest lifestyles lived six years longer, women had five extra years. Experts said it was never too late to start looking after your health. Being sedentary, overweight, a smoker or heavy drinker is bad for health and shortens life expectancy. The researchers said they did not know how big the effect would be after 75, so they followed a group of people for 18 years

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Less chronic disease in store for fit 50-year-olds: study (USA)

Fit 50-year-olds are less likely to get chronic diseases as they age, according to a U.S. study that sheds new light on the link between exercise and healthy aging. "It has been known for decades that if you are more fit, you live longer," Dr. Jarett Berry at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, told Reuters Health. "But it has not been clear that you have a higher quality of life, that you age better." It's possible that fit people just delay the onset of chronic illness, for instance, and end up being sick just as long as their weaker peers. But that doesn't appear to be the case, according to the new research, published in the Archives of Internal Medicine. "We see truly reduced chronic disease, rather than just delaying the inevitable," said Berry, who led the study. He and his colleagues studied more than 18,600 healthy men and women who had undergone a treadmill test sometime around age 50 to measure their cardiorespiratory fitness

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

U of S and Saskatchewan Blue Cross announce $1-million investment to launch childhood obesity prevention program

The University of Saskatchewan has announced an exciting partnership with Saskatchewan Blue Cross to curb childhood obesity in the province. Enabled by the generous $1-million investment of Saskatchewan Blue Cross, the College of Kinesiology will launch the Mind, Exercise, Nutrition, Do It (MEND) program in Saskatchewan this September.

"The corporate social responsibility vision of Saskatchewan Blue Cross is the improved health and wellness of Saskatchewan residents. We care about Saskatchewan people and feel a strong responsibility to address the pressing health issue of childhood obesity, as our children's health will determine the future health of our province," stated Arnie Arnott, president and CEO of Saskatchewan Blue Cross.

"We are very pleased to be the lead partner of MEND in Saskatchewan, creating a breakthrough pathway for young people to connect with a new obesity prevention program," Arnott continued. "We are tackling the issue of childhood obesity by committing $1-million in start-up funding for a MEND program to be delivered at the University of Saskatchewan, the first of its kind in our province."

MEND inspires children and families to lead and sustain fitter, healthier and happier lives by changing behaviours that cause obesity. Presently in Canada, more than a quarter of children ages two to17 are overweight or obese. In Saskatchewan the problem is even more pronounced with a rate of over 29 per cent.

"The College of Kinesiology is particularly committed to this program. Promoting a healthy lifestyle and highlighting the importance of increased levels of physical activity are key components in reversing this trend," said Carol Rodgers, dean of the College of Kinesiology.

"It is also a wonderful opportunity for students and faculty across the Colleges of Kinesiology, Nursing, Medicine and Pharmacy and Nutrition to work together in an inter-professional model of wellness program delivery," she added.

MEND is a program that has evolved into one of the most successful and internationally recognized obesity prevention initiatives in the past decade with programs in the United Kingdom, Canada, United States, Australia, New Zealand and Denmark.

In Saskatchewan, the program will begin as a three-year project, starting with Saskatoon in the first year and expanding to Prince Albert and northern communities in year two. In its third year, it will expand throughout the province to include Regina and southern regions. The programs are provided free of charge through the support of donors like lead partner Saskatchewan Blue Cross, and will offer three streams, focusing on children aged two to four, five to seven and seven to 13.

Together with their parents, children learn about topics that range from nutrition and portion size to motivation and goal setting. Additionally, children participate in group physical activity while parents discuss ways to improve the overall health of their families.

The leadership Saskatchewan Blue Cross exemplifies in supporting the MEND program is in line with its vision of improving the health and wellness of Saskatchewan residents

2012 Saskatoon Heartbeat Run

2012 Saskatoon Heartbeat RunStart planning for the 2012 Saskatoon Heartbeat Run in support of the Royal University Hospital Foundation!

Come out on September 16, 2012 and participate in the 10km run, 5km Run/Walk, or the 1km Fun Run!

This scenic course starts and finishes at the Mendel Riverbank, just East of the Kinsmen Park. Don't miss out on a great fall day where you will overlook the North Saskatchewan River and the breath-taking views of trees turning colour and leaves falling.

General Information: Event Director at 1-(306)-667-3828

Volunteer Coordinator Information: 1-(306)-667-3828

Monday, August 20, 2012

Craving Change(TM) - changing your relationship with food

Craving Change(TM) - changing your relationship with foodCraving Change(TM) - changing your relationship with food - presented free of charge by LiveWell Dietitians

Understand why you eat the way you do:
Comfort yourself without food - Change your thinking - Change your eating - Most beneficial to attend all 4 sessions

West Winds Primary Health Centre:
Wednesday, September 19 2:00 to 4:00pm
Wednesday, September 26 2:00 to 4:00pm
Wednesday, October 10 2:00 to 4:00pm
Wednesday, October 24 2:00 to 4:00pm
Please call 655-LIVE or 655-5483 to register

CARG patient responsibilities at the Saskatoon Field House

Health Issues:

- Inform the staff if you have been ill and are returning to the program so that they can update your medical chart
- Always exercise at your own pace; don't compete with others or make up for lost time
- For your safety, attend only at designated times as this is part of our agreement with the Saskatoon Field House
- If you have been prescribed Nitroglycerine carry it with you at all times
- Tell the staff immediately if you feel: dizzy or light-headed; nauseated; chest discomfort; any other type of discomfort; tired after a workout; more short of breath; sweat more than usual, notice any unusual heart beats; generally unwell
- Inform the staff if you leave the track during your workout
- Tell the staff if you have any pre-existing muscle or bone problems i.e. arthritis, back problems
- Let the staff know if you are going away for any period of time
- If you feel ill, do not exercise as this will do little good and is potentially dangerous
- Avoid drinking alcohol before attending the program
- Avoid wearing perfume or other scented products, as some participants have allergies to these substances

Track Safety:

- Wear comfortable clothes
- Be sure to step off the track if you stop to talk to someone, or check your pulse
- Follow the lane directions
- Be sure to check both ways before going onto and coming off the track
- Abusive or threatening behavior will not be tolerated
- If you have a problem: address all questions, concerns, and problems related to the program to Elaine Tyerman (655-1859) or the C.A.R.G. Group executive members. DO NOT go to the Field House staff, maintenance, or front desk staff

Sunday, August 19, 2012

CARG Pillow Stuffing Bee

Darlene Urban writes: "The next Pillow Stuffing Bee will be sometime mid September to mid October. Watch for posting of dates on bulletin board"

The 2012 CARG Volunteer BBQ

A contribution from Cathy Matlock: The CARG BBQ was held on June 22, 2012 on the most beautiful afternoon and early evening. Vic Zapf picked another awesome day. There are quite a few people who made this day run smoothly and we thank them.

To Darlene Urban, Dolores Perras and Cathy Matlock who went grocery shopping. We try very hard to get it just right.

To Carol-Lynne Zapf who made the coffee and brought a salad, and to Darlene Urban who also brought salads. They were delicious!

To Dolores Perras, Carole-Lynne Zapf, Darlene Urban and Mary Green who served up the food so efficiently. Good job ladies.

To Eva Shabits for the delicious rhubarb punch and rhubarb relish...yum.

To Arlene Block and Sharon Schmnidt who cut up and served the "CARG Volunteer Cakes". Well Done.

To Lloyd and Bonnie Wudrick who organized the "Bean Bag Baseball" game. The winning team has bragging rights until the next game. Thank you so much.

To Lloyd Wudrick and Vic Zapf for cooking up the burgers so efficiently - a job well done.

To Gordon Urban who must have made many K's running with the food and to Paul Matlock who also made many trips on the golf cart delivering what was needed.

What a nice surprise when we heard music wafting through the campground, courtesy of Fay Buettner - what a nice touch. Thank you Fay.

To Vi Remenda, who each morning at the Field House, made sure the reply box was put out. Thank you to the staff member who put it away each day.

To Rolly, Vic, Gordon, Paul, Dolores, Carol-Lynne, Darlene who set up tables, and then put them away afterwards...thank you.

And we won't ever forget the ladies who always insist on doing the dishes - Dolores, Carol-Lynne, Darlene, and Marty - thank you too.

To Pat Auperle and Ritva Steuwe who cleaned off the tables - thank you

Vic Zapf and Cathy Matlock thank you for attending this event. Please spread the news that if you volunteer within the next twelve months you will be invited to attend the next CARG Volunteer BBQ.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Volunteers needed for CARG fee collections

Mary Green writes: Volunteers needed for CARG fee collections

When: The first Monday, Wednesday and Friday of the month
Time: Starting at 6:30 a.m. going until 10:30 a.m. 1 hour long shifts
Number of Volunteers: Four per shift would be nice
Please contact Mary Green at or 343-6552 or sign the list on the notice board at the field house

Don Campbell inducted into the Saskatchewan Golf Hall of Fame

Everyone in CARG would like to congratulate Don Campbell on his induction into the Saskatchewan Golf Hall of Fame (builder category). The induction ceremony will be held on Saturday, September 15th at the Riverside Country Club in Saskatoon. Tickets for the event will be $75.00 and are available for purchase from the Golf Saskatchewan website. Don was previously inducted into the Saskatoon Sports Hall of Fame in 2003

Diabetes on Track - do you have a question regarding your diabetes? (Fall 2012)

Marlene Matiko, Diabetes Nurse Educator, and Rochelle Anthony, Dietitian, will be in the track area to answer your questions on:

Field House:
Wednesday, September 26: 8:30am - 10:30am
Tuesday, October 23: 8:30am - 10:30am
Monday, November 5: 8:30am - 10:30am
Tuesday, December 4: 8:30am - 10:30am

Shaw Centre:
Wednesday, October 24: @ 8:30am - 10:30am

Please bring your logbook and blood sugar meter. No appointments required but you may book a time. Speak to your exercise therapist about this

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Benefits of CARG by Larry Mullen and Anne Smart

Benefits of CARG by Larry Mullen and Anne SmartLarry Mullen writes: In June of 2002 I suffered a heart attack, and entered the C.A.R.G. program that September. My condition was such that stents, angioplasties and/or other surgery were not advised. Weight loss was paramount. Six months after my heart attack I had lost fifty pounds and was attending C.A.R.G. programs regularly. (Forty of those pounds have stayed off to this day). Over the years many people in the program have commented to me that the support system provided by C.A.R.G. has been crucial in helping them maintain an exercise program to stay healthy. I seriously doubt I could have maintained a healthy routine on my own. Not only is the regular exercise program necessary but also the educational sessions provided in the yellow shirt program were critical in pointing out the hows and whys of a sound and proper program for survival. We are fortunate in Saskatoon to have one of the best cardiac rehab programs in Canada.

Anne Smart (Larry's wife) responds: I first joined C.A.R.G. as Larry's support person, wearing a white shirt in the Field House and wielding a knife in the kitchen. We had to chop up an endless number of vegetables to comply with the advice that he cut butter, cheese, eggs, red meat and salt out of his diet. How do you feed a guy without those staples? And how do you get out the door to exercise when it's thirty below? We learned to do it and it paid off. Larry hasn't had an angina attack since he was first hospitalized. A few years later it was my turn. After complaining of shortness of breath I had a nuclear scan, following a stress test, which showed significant blockages to some of my arteries. No other symptoms but not a surprise. Cardiovascular disease is endemic in my family. Since I was already plugged into the exercise and diet routine I needed only to add medication to stabilize my condition. My family doctor has told me the C.A.R.G. program has made a "huge difference to my health, just a huge difference". Before all this happened I used to watch in awe the large number of red shirts marching around the track. I called "them" the "walking wounded" - for the red colour and the fact that all of "them" had had a heart "event". Now I'm one of "them" I've discovered a whole community of very strong and friendly souls who keep me going. Thanks to you all for your smiles

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Exercising later in life can ward off heart problems (UK)

Leisurely exercise for two and a half hours a week could help those approaching their 50s avoid heart disease by controlling inflammation. Researchers found those who carry out physical activities such as brisk walking, cycling or home maintenance for a decade had healthier hearts. The results could help encourage the middle-aged to make lifestyle changes even if they rarely exercised in their younger years. Dr Mark Hamer, associate professor of epidemiology and public health at University College London (UCL), said: "It's not just vigorous exercise and sports that are important. "These leisure-time activities represent moderate intensity exercise that is important to health. It is especially important for older people to be physically active because it contributes to successful ageing." The findings were published in the journal Circulation

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Angina medicine could protect from carbon monoxide poisoning

Angina medicine could protect from carbon monoxide poisoningScientists funded by The British Heart Foundation have found that a commonly-used drug for treating angina could help protect the heart from damage caused by carbon monoxide poisoning. Carbon monoxide is a toxic gas that is difficult for people to detect - it can be produced by faulty gas appliances such as heaters. Poisoning from the gas causes 1.6 million deaths worldwide every year - it causes many people to develop heart rhythm problems called arrhythmias which, if left untreated, can be fatal. The team, made up of scientists from around the world but led by the University of Leeds, looked at how carbon monoxide triggers these arrhythmias. The researchers have improved our understanding of the damage that occurs in the heart's cells after breathing in carbon monoxide. This is vital if we are to develop effective treatments

Pfizer pays $60 million to settle government allegations of bribing doctors overseas

Pfizer has agreed to pay the US federal government $60 million to settle allegations that its employees bribed doctors and other foreign officials in Europe and Asia to win business and boost sales. The Securities and Exchange Commission said Tuesday that Pfizer's overseas subsidiaries made illegal payments to health care workers in China, Italy, Russia, Croatia and other Eastern European countries. As early as 2001, Pfizer sales representatives tried to conceal the bribes by recording them as legitimate business expenses for travel, entertainment and marketing purposes, the agency said. Pfizer develops and produces medicines and vaccines for a wide range of conditions including in the areas of immunology and inflammation, oncology, cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, neuroscience and pain - King

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Nursery rhyme helps conduct CPR

Nursery rhyme helps conduct CPRThe children's nursery rhyme "Row, row, row your boat" provides the right beat for chest compressions during cardiopulmonary resuscitation, a U.S. expert says. Dr. Ahamed Idris of the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, in conjunction with the Resuscitation Outcomes Consortium, said one administering CPR should perform between 100 and 120 chest compressions per minute for the best chance to restore a pulse. Compressions to the chest performed to the repeatable beat of "Row, Row, Row Your Boat" [Gently down the stream, Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily, Life is but a dream] fall right in that crucial range, Idris said. "More or less compressions have a substantially lower chance of restoring a heartbeat," Idris, an emergency medicine expert, said in a statement. Idris said three steps can significantly improve the chance of saving the life of someone who suffers cardiac arrest -call 9-1-1; use both palms to press hard on the center of the chest, and repeatedly hum the "row, row, row your boat" tune while maintaining the compressions; do not stop until first responders arrive. The findings were published in the journal Circulation

Unnecessary Stent Lawyers announce website for cardiac patients (USA)

The attorneys at Morgan and Morgan have announced that a website has been launched for patients who have undergone a cardiac catheterization or stent procedure. The site was developed in light of reports that some doctors and hospitals may be unnecessarily ordering these procedures in an attempt to increase their own revenue. On the site, patients can learn more about these allegations and find out how they can determine whether their cardiac stent procedure was necessary. Visit the website at

Scientists reveal how to mend a broken heart (with a stem cell)

Scientists reveal how to mend a broken heart (with a stem cell)Stem cell therapies offer the promise of radical new treatments for everything from Parkinson's to heart disease. However, researchers have so far struggled to control the cells, the master cells of the body which can be turned into any other cell. A US team now believes have have made a major step towards potential treatments for cardiac disease with the discovery of a molecule than can turn a stem cell into a heart cell. Researchers at Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute, the Human BioMolecular Research Institute, and ChemRegen, Inc. have been searching for molecules that convert stem cells to heart cells for about eight years - and now they've found one. The researchers use a robot to sift through a large collection of drug-like chemicals and uncovered ITD-1, a molecule that can be used to generate unlimited numbers of new heart cells from stem cells. 'Heart disease is the leading cause of death in this country,' said Mark Mercola, director of Sanford-Burnham's Muscle Development and Regeneration Program and senior author of the study - Daily Mail