News & Medical Papers
For current guidelines and updates from within the arrhythmia healthcare community please visit Arrhythmia Watch.
Rosetta Genomics Announces Publication of Data Correlating miR-150 to Atrial Fibrillation in Patients With Chronic Systolic Heart Failure
wsj.com, 3 March 2014
Study Demonstrating microRNAs to Be Good Biomarkers for Heart Failure Complements Earlier Rosetta Published Study; Rosetta Advancing a microRNA-Based Assay in Heart Failure.
The subcutaneous defibrillator: who it can benefit and why
escardio.org, 4 March 2014
If a given patient necessitating implantation of a cardioverter defibrillator has no indications for cardiac resynchronisation, bradycardia support or antitachycardia pacing and provided this patient's condition or previous history would make the absence of leads within the heart and the preservation of central venous circulation preferable, than the newly developed subcutaneous cardioverter defibrillator is a first line indication.
My top 10 tips for ECG interpretation
bjcardio.co.uk, March 2014
In this new regular series ‘ECGs for the fainthearted’ Dr Heather Wetherell will be interpreting ECGs in a non-threatening and simple way. Confident interpretation of ECGs is fast becoming a dying art form. What’s more, it’s an art form that any good scientist can enjoy!
It’s only words…
bjcardio.co.uk, March 2014
We continue our series in which Consultant Interventionist Dr Michael Norell takes a sideways look at life in the cath lab…and beyond. In this column, he considers how we talk to our patients.
Patient understanding of frequently used cardiology terminology
bjcardio.co.uk, March 2014
Effective communication is known to increase patient satisfaction and correlates with improved health outcomes.
CT Appears Safe in Patients With Pacemakers, ICDs
medpagetoday.com, 27 February 2014
Patients with cardiac rhythm management devices showed no clinically significant major or minor events related to computed tomography (CT) imaging over a 10-year period at two large-volume care centers, researchers reported.
JOB VACANCY: 2x Arrhythmia Care Co-ordinators (Plymouth)
4 February 2014, NHS Jobs
We are looking to recruit two WTE staff with a strong background as either a Cardiac Nurse or Cardiac Physiologist to fulfil the role of ‘HeartSwell SW – Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust Arrhythmia Care Coordinators’.
This is an exciting developmental role, supporting the implementation of the quality requirements set out within Chapter 8 of the NSF for Coronary Heart Disease: Arrhythmias and Sudden Cardiac Death (DoH, March 2005).
The post holders will work to develop improved diagnostic, referral and treatment pathways for arrhythmia patients across the care continuum from primary to tertiary care, engaging with healthcare professionals across the network area, including those caring for patients with Adult Congenital Heart Disease. The ACC posts will ensure that the service offered would be convenient and accessible to patients. They will assist in ensuring that patients receive timely and streamlined care as well as contributing to reducing waiting times, waiting lists for treatment and inappropriate admissions to acute beds.
Cutting Inappropriate ICD Shocks: Long Arrhythmia-Detection Time Strategy Confirmed
medscape.com, 21 February 2014
Programming implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICDs) to delay the time they take to treat ventricular arrhythmias—that is, with prolonged detection times—cut mortality by 23% and inappropriate shocks by more than one-half in a meta-analysis encompassing about 4900 patients.
Success Rate of AF Ablation Without Antiarrhythmic Drugs Is 40% in Europe
medscape.com, 20 February 2014
A European pilot study of patients with atrial fibrillation (AF) undergoing catheter ablation reveals that just over 40% of patients are free from AF at one year without the use of antiarrhythmic medications.
Insertable loop recorders offer “the best opportunity” to diagnose unexplained syncope and abnormal heart rhythms
cxvascular.com, 20 February 2014
Nick Linker, James Cook University Hospital, Middlesbrough, UK, Executive Committee member of the Arrhythmia Alliance—UK’s heart rhythm charity—and president elect of the British Heart Rhythm Society, recently implanted, for the first time in the UK, the smallest version of an insertable loop recorder. He spoke to Cardiac Rhythm News on the role and advantages of implantable loop recorders in the diagnosis of syncope and cardiac arrhythmias, the main features of this new device and its cost-effectiveness.
RAAFT-2 Published, but Editorial Says No Changes in AF Guidelines
medpagetoday.com, 18 February 2014
The Radiofrequency Ablation vs Antiarrhythmic Drugs as First-Line Therapy of Atrial Fibrillation (RAAFT 2) trial, a study that showed radiofrequency catheter ablation with pulmonary-vein isolation could be successfully performed as first-line therapy in patients with atrial fibrillation (AF), is now published.
Initial treatment with radiofrequency ablation instead of medication better in controlling paroxysmal AF
medpagetoday.com, 18 February 2014
Paroxysmal atrial fibrillation (Afib) recurred significantly less often in patients initially treated with radiofrequency ablation (RFA) instead of medication, results of a randomized trial showed.
Study reveals overall success rate of AF ablation in Europe
news-medical.net, 18 February 2014
One-quarter of high risk patients do not receive anticoagulants after ablation of atrial fibrillation (AF), according to the latest survey of European practice.
Anticoagulants prescribed more frequently in AF patients, underused in elderly
healio.com, 16 February 2014
The use of oral anticoagulation in patients with atrial fibrillation has increased in the past decade, but antiplatelet therapy remains common in this population, recent study data suggest.
Researchers at OSU aspire to fix damaged hearts by repairing their natural pacemakers
medcitynews.com, 14 February 2014
Instead of implanting a medical device to keep arrhythmic hearts beating on pace, researchers at Ohio State dream of being able to give the heart back its own natural pacemaking abilities.
Digital media could work as tool to improve health
reuters.com, 14 February 2014
After a desperate mother in South Wales, UK, posted a video of her baby having a seizure on Facebook, one of her friends provided the diagnosis that had eluded the boy's doctor.
Heart Rhythm Society's Choosing Wisely List Disappoints
medscape.com, 12 February 2014
The Heart Rhythm Society (HRS) waited a long time to introduce its Choosing Wisely list of "Five Things Physicians and Patients Should Question.
Shock-Energy Testing with ICDs Provides No Benefit
medpagetoday.com, 7 February 2014
KFAR SABA, ISRAEL – Defibrillation-threshold (DFT) testing performed at the time of ICD implantation failed to reduce the risk of death, malignant ventricular arrhythmias, or inappropriate shocks when compared with individuals implanted without DFT, a new study shows.
NICE issues draft guidance on coagulation testing device
NursingTimes.net, 6 February 2014
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence has published recommendations for self-monitoring the clotting of blood in people on long-term anticoagulation therapy.
Mini heart monitor implant is one of the first in UK
Northern Echo, 5 February 2014
THE James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough has become the first in the UK to implant a new miniature wireless heart monitor.
BMJ content available for free
To mark National Heart Month 2014, BMJ have pulled together cardiology highlights from across our portfolio of products.We have free articles from Heart and our other cardiology titles, free modules from BMJ Learning, links to videos and podcasts from The BMJ, and last but not least, we have information about our BMJ Masterclasses at the end of the month.
Thames Valley Strategic Clinical Network & Cinical Senate Newsletter
Highlights from HRC 2013
bjcardio.co.uk, 20 December 2014
The Heart Rhythm Congress (HRC) remains the largest and fastest growing heart rhythm meeting in the UK, providing education and training to promote diversity and improved technology for all involved in the treatment of cardiac arrhythmia patients. We report highlights from this year’s meeting, HRC 2013, held in Birmingham from September 20th–23rd 2013.
Dabigatran improves the efficiency of an elective direct current cardioversion service
bjcardio.co.uk, February 2014
Anticoagulation prior to direct current cardioversion (DCCV) is mandatory to reduce the risk of thromboembolism. We examined the impact of the use of dabigatran as an alternative to warfarin on the efficiency of an outpatient DCCV service.
Aspirin still overprescribed for stroke prevention in atrial fibrillation
medicalxpress.com, 28 January 2014
Aspirin is still overprescribed for stroke prevention in atrial fibrillation (AF) despite the potential for dangerous side effects, according to research published today.
NICE guidance on implantable cardiac devices
nursingtimes.net, 21 January 2014
Implantable cardiac devices offer an “important” option for the treatment and prevention of life-threatening arrhythmias and heart failure, according to draft guidance from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence.
Researchers discover how heart arrhythmia occurs
medicalxpress.com, 19 January 2014
Researchers have discovered the fundamental biology of calcium waves in relation to heart arrhythmias.
Air Pollution: Acute Trigger of Atrial Fibrillation
medpagetoday.com, 10 January 2014
New research fingers air pollution as an instigator of atrial fibrillation (AF) events in at-risk individuals. Increases in fine particulate matter, black carbon, and nitrogen dioxide—all traffic-related pollutants—triggered irregular heartbeats in patients with implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICDs) within as little as 2 hours after exposure, according to the study findings.
More caffeine may lower risk of atrial fibrillation
medpagetoday.com, 7 January 2014
Habitually consuming caffeine in coffee and other drinks and foods may protect against atrial fibrillation, a meta-analysis suggested.
Novel Patch Detects More AF Events than Holter Monitor
medscape.com, 6 January 2013
The novel Zio patch (iRhythm Technologies, San Francisco, CA), worn for 14 days, outperformed a conventional Holter monitor worn for 24 hours, in a study of patients who underwent ambulatory ECG monitoring to detect suspected cardiac arrhythmia. Among 146 patients who simultaneously received both devices, the patch detected 96 arrhythmias, whereas the Holter detected 61 arrhythmias (p<0.001).
Dabigatran Under the FDA's Watchful Eye
medscape.com, 6 January 2014
The US Food and Drug Administration is requesting input from the public on a proposed study that will assess safety outcomes in adults with atrial fibrillation who recently started treated with dabigatranetexilate (Pradaxa, Boehringer Ingelheim) or warfarin.
FDA Plans New Safety Assessment Of Dabigatran (Pradaxa)
forbes.com, 3 January 2014
Since the approval of dabigatran (Pradaxa, Boehringer Ingelheim) in Europe in 2008 and in the US in 2010 there have been persistent and lingering concerns about the drug’s safety. Now the FDA plans to perform a large new assessment of the drug compared to warfarin.
AF registry data reveal low use of novel oral anticoagulants in Europe
healio,com, 3 January 2014
The use of novel oral anticoagulants in patients with atrial fibrillation is low in Europe, and compliance with European treatment guidelines for AF is suboptimal in those at the lowest and highest risk for stroke, according to a report by the European Society of Cardiology.
Bystander CPR Better When More People Help
medpagetoday.com, 3 January 2014
Cardiac arrest victims were more likely to receive good-quality bystander-initiated cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) if multiple people assisted, researchers found.
Positive EP Test Helps ID Post-MI Patients for ICDs
medscape.com, 2 January 2014
Post–myocardial infarction (MI) patients with severe left ventricular dysfunction who have a negative electrophysiologic study (EPS) showing no inducible ventricular tachycardia (VT) can do without the protection of an implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD), a new study shows.
ACC Predicts Biggest Cardiology News for 2014
medscape.com, 30 December 2013
The American College of Cardiology (ACC) has released its best guess as to the biggest stories in cardiovascular medicine in 2014, among them a reminder of some of the big trial results cardiologists have been looking forward to seeing for years.
Promising Data on Antidotes to New Anticoagulants
medscape.com, 20 December 2013
New "proof of concept" data on 2 antidotes for the new oral anticoagulants have shown impressive results, with both bringing about immediate reversal of anticoagulant effect with no indication of prothrombotic complications.
Novel Oral Anticoagulants vs Warfarin: The Truth is Relative
medscape.com, 18 December 2013
The makers of novel anticoagulant (NOAC) drugs have done well. A neutral observer might think these drugs are the next penicillin.
Warfarin raises stroke risk by 70% when first initiated
pulsetoday.co.uk, 19 December 2013
GPs have been warned to monitor patients who have been recently initiated on warfarin, as these patients have a paradoxical 71% increased risk of stroke within the first 30 days of use.
Medicines Optimisation scope
NICE, November 2013Read more
Watchman Afib Device Wins FDA Panel Nod
medpagetoday.com, 11 December 2013
A panel of FDA advisers gave strong backing to an implantable device that's an alternative to blood-thinners in preventing strokes in patients with atrial fibrillation -- an endorsement that comes 3 years after the FDA rejected the Watchman device.
Case report: recurrent syncope in head and neck cancer
bjcardio.co.uk, December 2013
Syncope is defined as a transient loss of consciousness due to cerebral hypoperfusion followed by rapid and complete recovery. It is a common complaint, accounting for 3–5% of Accident and Emergency (A&E) attendances, and up to 50% of these patients are admitted to hospital.1 One rare cause of reflex syncope is mechanical stimulation of the carotid sinus by cancers of the head and neck, and this case demonstrates the challenges in its management.
Heart-powered pacemaker project receives £5m
eandt.theiet.org, 10 December 2013
Perpetually self-powered electronic systems that could be implanted into the human body and power cardiac pacemakers are being developed as a part of an EU-funded project.
New findings advance the opportunities for a ‘pacemaker in a bottle’
imt.ie, 11 December 2013
Johns Hopkins heart researchers are unravelling the mystery of how a modified pacemaker used to treat many patients with heart failure, known as cardiac resynchronisation therapy (CRT), is able to strengthen the heart muscle while making it beat in a co-ordinated fashion.
Boehringer Ingelheim Blood Clot Drug Shows Consistency
dddmag.com, 12 October 2013
New data analyses from Boehringer-Ingelheim show that the positive treatment effect (efficacy and safety profile) of Pradaxa (dabigatran etexilate) 150mg twice-daily was consistent in a wide range of patients with acute deep vein thrombosis (DVT), a blood clot in the leg veins, or pulmonary embolism (PE), a blood clot in the lung, regardless of age, renal function, simultaneous use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or low-dose acetylsalicylic acid (ASA) or the presence of cancer.
Watchman Afib Device Gets Second Chance
medpagetoday.com, 10 December 2013
The Watchman transcatheter left atrial appendage closure device will be considered again by an FDA advisory committee for the prevention of stroke or systemic embolism in patients with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation.
FDA looks again at Boston Scientific anti-stroke device
FoxNews.com, 9 December 2013
U.S. Food and Drug Administration staff reviewing data on Boston Scientific Corp's novel anti-stroke device highlighted the implant's failure to meet a key goal for effectiveness in a recent study but said on Monday that other data must be weighed in deciding whether it should be approved.
Sorin wins CE Mark for Intensia defibrillators
massdevice.com, 6 December 2013
Sorin lands CE Mark approval in the European Union for its Intensia line of implantable cardioverter defibrillators and cardiac resynchronization therapy devices.
'New' Oral Anticoagulant Stroke-Protection Benefits in AF Cut Across Subgroups in Meta-Analysis
medscape.com, 5 December 2013
LONDON, UK — Collectively, four new oral anticoagulants (NOACs) protect against stroke or systemic embolism better than warfarin and compare favorably on safety in patients with atrial fibrillation (AF), concludes a meta-analysis of four big randomized trials, all major showcases for the agents' potential value in AF.
Final Scope issued on NICE public health guidance Independence and mental wellbeing (including social and emotional wellbeing) for older people
NICE, November 2013
Invitation to apply for the position of Standing committee member for the Clinical Guideline Rapid Updates Standing Committee B-pilot programme
NICE, November 2013
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) is a world leader in setting standards for high quality health and social care and for promoting healthy living. We provide authoritative, evidence-based guidance on the most effective ways to diagnose, treat and prevent disease and ill health.
ICD remote patient monitoring technology underused
healio.com, 4 December 2013
Fewer than half of patients who receive an implantable cardioverter defibrillator capable of remote patient monitoring use the technology within 180 days of implant, researchers reported in a recent study.
GARFIELD provides snapshot into real world of AF
Preliminary results from a 'real world' registry, GARFIELD, looking at newly-diagnosed patients with atrial fibrillation (AF) at risk for stroke, were presented at the meeting. Little is known about AF management and outcomes outside clinical studies and the registry will follow patients globally for up to six years. Early results show oral anticoagulants are being under prescribed in high-risk patients. Drs Henry Purcell and Henry Oluwasefunmi Savage discuss the registry findings in our BJC podcast.
View podcast now
EHRA Practical Guide on the use of new oral anticoagulants in patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation: executive summary
EHRA, November 2013
New oral anticoagulants (NOACs) are an alternative for vitamin K antagonists (VKAs) to prevent stroke in patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation (AF).
Surrogates often make call to deactivate heart devices
uk.reuters.com, 26 July 2013
People who have implanted heart devices rarely have advance directives indicating whether they want them deactivated near the end of life, according to a new study. So the decision often has to be made by loved ones.
NICE Clinical guidelines, CG172 - Issued: November 2013
MI - secondary prevention: secondary prevention in primary and secondary care for patients following a myocardial infarction.Read more
Daiichi blood thinner safer, as effective as warfarin: study
uk.reuters.com, 19 November 2013
A new blood clot and stroke preventer from Daiichi Sankyo proved as effective and safer than widely used warfarin in a large, late stage trial of patients with atrial fibrillation, paving the way for it to compete with other new warfarin alternatives on the market.
More, Faster Hypothermia No Better After Cardiac Arrest
medpagetoday.com, 17 November 2013
Strategies to cool out-of-hospital cardiac arrest patients more or faster had little extra impact on outcomes, two trials showed.
Resveratrol derivative shows promise in treating atrial fibrillation
cxvascular.com, 30 October 2013
A new study published in the British Journal of Pharmacology has shown that a new medication based on resveratrol—a compound found in red wine and nuts—is an effective inhibitor of several potential targets involved in atrial fibrillation development.
Radiation exposure in supraventricular tachycardia ablation reduced with minimally fluoroscopic mapping system
cxvascular.com, 8 November 2013
Radiofrequency ablation of supraventricular tachycardia guided by the non-fluoroscopic Ensite NavX mapping system (St Jude Medical) has shown lower levels of ionising radiation exposure for the patient and for the operator compared with conventional catheter ablation, according to preliminary results from the NO-PARTY Italian trial.
Magnetic analogue of ECG shows 89% accuracy diagnosing long QT syndrome in human foetuses
cxvascular.com, 13 November 2013
A first-of-its-kind study, published on 11 November in Circulation, has found that foetal magnetocardiography (fMCG)—the magnetic analogue of electrocardiograms (ECG)—may help to diagnose and possibly treat in utero long QT syndrome. Results using fMCG show 89% accuracy diagnosing long QT syndrome in the womb.
ECG Methodical Analysis
bjcardio.co.uk, September 2013
In this new regular series ‘ECGs for the fainthearted’ Dr Heather Wetherell will be interpreting ECGs in a non-threatening and simple way. She hopes this will help keep the art alive in primary care. In this first article, she looks at ECG methodical analysis.
Cardiomyopathy - clinical review
gponline.com, 8 November 2013
Discussing the diagnosis, management and prognosis of cardiomyopathy. By Dr cardiologist Dr Rajiv Sankaranarayanan.
Calon (Catheter Ablation: Linking Outcomes to NICE)
CALON is making progress, with negotiations underway to access the data needed a pilot project which will link patient information from different sources to give improved information on cardiac ablation.
AFib may spark MI
medpagetoday.com, 4 November 2013
Although myocardial infarction is a known risk factor for the development of atrial fibrillation, the relationship might work the other way around, too, researchers found.
Clinical strategies for selecting oral anticoagulants in atrial fibrillation
cxvascular.com, 17 October 2013
Patients with atrial fibrillation have a five- to seven-fold greater risk of stroke than the general population, and approximately 20% of ischaemic strokes are due to this arrhythmia. Vitamin K antagonists such as warfarin have been the long-standing anticoagulants for stroke prevention in atrial fibrillation.
Discrepancies in CRT-ICD battery longevity
cxvascular.com, 17 October 2013
An independent study demonstrates significant differences in battery longevity between contemporary cardiac resynchronisation therapy (CRT) implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICDs). The results, published in Europace, show that Boston Scientific and St Jude Medical devices had longer battery life compared with Medtronic devices.
Papworth Hospital cardiologist's work on cutting edge defibrillator contributes to international award
cambridge-news.co.uk, 30 October 2013
A life-saving defibrillator developed at Papworth Hospital has received the coveted Prix Galien in New York.
End-of-Life Care in Patients With Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillators
medscape.com, October 2013
Implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD)-delivered shocks can cause substantial distress, warranting consideration of ICD deactivation at end of life.
Novel anticoagulant prescriptions on the rise among elderly patients
healio.com, 27 October 2013
Prescriptions for novel oral anticoagulants in Canada have increased rapidly since their approval for the treatment of atrial fibrillation, particularly among patients aged 85 years or older, according to a recent report.
Key questions on syncope in older people
pulse-learning.co.uk, 17 October 2013
Gerontologists Professor Rose Anne Kenny and Dr Nigel Stout answer questions from GP Dr Mandy Fry on underlying causes of syncope, first-line investigations and prescribing fludrocortisone.
Weighing up blood-thinners: Is warfarin always the best choice?
medicalxpress.com, 17 October 2013
Patients who are responding below par to the anticoagulant drug warfarin have several options. They can undergo even more blood tests to monitor their response to the different dosages of this medication which is prescribed to prevent strokes, or they could start using one of the newer, yet more expensive, anticoagulants on the market.
Tiny Leadless Pacemaker Earns CE Mark Approval
medscape.com, 14 October 2013
ST PAUL, MN - St Jude Medical today announced that the leadless pacemaker (Nanostim), an intracardiac device that has done away with arguably their most problematic component, has been given CE Mark approval for sale in Europe.
CHA2DS2-VASc Score Best for Stroke Risk Assessment in AF
medscape.com, September 2013
Further data confirming that the CHA2DS2-VASc score is preferable to the CHADS2 score in identifying patients with atrial fibrillation (AF) at very low risk for stroke who do not need anticoagulation have come from a large German registry study.
Pediatric atrial fibrillation, rare, but has serious complications risk and high recurrence rates
medicalxpress.com, 7 October 2013
Atrial fibrillation (AF), characterized by a rapid and irregular heartbeat, is the most common chronic arrhythmia in adults, but is rare in children. In one of the first studies of pediatric "lone AF" (AF without associated heart disease), researchers found a nearly 40% recurrence rate and that AF in the young is accompanied by substantial symptoms.
Biotronik Releases Ilesto DX ICD/CRT-D in US
medgadget.com, 7 October 2013
Having received FDA approval for the Ilesto family of implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) / cardiac resynchronization therapy defibrillator (CRT-D) devices, BIOTRONIK is launching the Ilesto DX platform in the US.
Improved Survival Among Danish Cardiac-Arrest Patients
theheart.org, 1 October 2013
COPENHAGEN, DENMARK — More and more individuals in Denmark are surviving out-of-hospital cardiac arrest, possibly because of an increase in bystanders performing cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), according to the results of a new study.
Framingham Heart Study Celebrates 65 Years
theheart.org, 3 October 2013
FRAMINGHAM, MA — The Framingham Heart Study (FHS), the longest-running study of cardiovascular disease and its risk factors, is turning 65 years old next week.
Fallout from Bleeding Less Severe in Patients on Dabigatran Compared with Warfarin
tctmd.com, 3 October 2013
Patients with atrial fibrillation (A-fib) or venous thromboembolism (VTE) who experience major bleeding on the direct thrombin inhibitor dabigatran require a shorter intensive care stay and show a trend for lower mortality than do similar patients on warfarin, according to a review of comparative trials published online September 30, 2013, ahead of print in Circulation.
VIDEO: ESC 2013 - Highlights on arrhythmia and device therapy
cxvascular.com, 17 September 2013
Christophe Leclercq, Rennes, France, chairperson of two European Society of Cardiology (ESC) 2013 sessions in cardiac resynchronisation therapy, speaks about this year’s congress highlights on arrhythmia and device therapy and also what is expected from the ESC congress 2014 in the electrophysiology field.
Sports and arrhythmias: to screen or not to screen
cxvascular.com, 17 September 2013
Screening athletes for the risk of sudden cardiac arrest has been a topic of discussion for many years. Jacob Tfelt-Hansen, author of a Danish study on this subject, gave an overview about different positions and studies that favour or disfavour this practice. He will be speaking on this at Venice Arrhythmias (27–29 October, Venice, Italy).
"Off hours" limit access to AEDs in cardiac arrest
theheart.org, 17 September 2013
Despite widespread placement of automated external defibrillators (AEDs) in one European city, more than half of all cardiac arrests occurred during hours when access to the lifesaving devices is not possible, according to the results of a new study.
Team discovers patient-specific cure for dangerous heart rhythm disorder
medicalxpress.com, 17 September 2013
The National Heart Centre Singapore (NHCS) research team has successfully and completely reversed the effects of the hERG (human ether-a-go-go-related gene) mutation in long QT syndrome 2 (LQTS 2) in patient-specific heart cells, scoring a world's first.
Bad medicine: atrial fibrillation
BMJ.com, 17 September 2013
Last week, our sister charity AF Association responded to an article in the British Medical Journal entitled ‘Bad medicine: atrial fibrillation’ which claimed that the effectiveness of anticoagulation to prevent stroke in AF was overstated. A comprehensive rebuttal of these claims, from the charity's Medical Advisory Committee, has been successfully acknowledged and published online in the BMJ.
Please can we call upon your support to click the ‘like’ button for the letter on the BMJ website. The more ‘likes’ received, the more likely the response will be included in the weekly print issue of the BMJ.
Please like and show your support here
Caution over use of catheter ablation for atrial fibrillation
BMJ.com, 16 September 2013
Read the response and challenge from Dr Gareth J Wynn and Dr Dhiraj Gupta to this article, first published in the British Medical Journal on Friday 14th September 2013.
Mass AF screening flags stroke risk
theheart.org, 13 September 2013
Systematic screening of more than 25 000 individuals aged 75 to 76 identified untreated AF in 5%, putting them at increased stroke risk, preliminary findings of the STROKESTOP study show.
One-Year Data From Global Atrial Fibrillation (AF) Registry Show Antithrombotic Agents Not Optimally Used to Prevent Stroke
sacbee,com, 3 September 2013
One-year outcomes data from the first cohort of the Global Anticoagulant Registry in the FIELD (GARFIELD), an innovative, independent academic research initiative, provide insights into the elevated stroke risk among subpopulations of patients with atrial fibrillation (AF).
Finding the least disruptive approach to tachy-brady syndrome: AF ablation vs pacemaker/drugs
theheart.org, 2 September 2013
One effect of becoming an AF ablation doctor is that you implant fewer pacemakers. Why would this be?
ECHO-CRT: Resynchronization no help, may be harmful in narrow-QRS heart failure
theheart.org, 3 September 2013
Amsterdam, the Netherlands - No, cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT) will not improve outcomes in patients with narrow QRS intervals (ie, <130 ms) who nonetheless have evidence of ventricular dyssynchrony by echocardiographic criteria. In fact, it may actually increase the risk of cardiovascular death.
ESC: CRT No Help, Maybe Harmful with Short QRS
medpagetoday.com, 3 September 2013
AMSTERDAM - Cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT) might harm patients with moderate-to-severe heart failure who have a short QRS duration, a randomized trial showed.
GPs undertreat women with AF
sciencecodex.com, 1 September 2013
Amsterdam, The Netherlands - Saturday 31 August 2013: General practitioners (GPs) undertreat women with atrial fibrillation (AF), according to research presented at ESC Congress 2013 today by Dr Pierre Sabouret from France.
Out-of-hospital cardiac arrest survival just 7 percent
sciencecodex.com, 1 September 2013
Amsterdam, The Netherlands – Sunday 1 September 2013: Survival for out-of-hospital cardiac arrest is just 7%, according to research presented at ESC Congress 2013 by Professor Xavier Jouven and Dr Wulfran Bougouin from France.
ESC: Home Monitoring of HF; MRI for Afib Ablation
medpagetoday.com, 1 September 2013
AMSTERDAM - Among the Hot Line presentations at the European Society of Cardiology meeting were a trial looking at telemonitoring of patients with heart failure and a study examining the association between atrial fibrosis and outcomes in patients with atrial fibrillation.
LINC: Similar outcomes with mechanical and manual CPR
theheart.org, 1 September 2013
Amsterdam, the Netherlands - Mechanical chest compressions with the LUCAS device (Physio-Control/Jolife) was as effective as but not more effective than manual compressions for delivering cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) to patients in cardiac arrest in the LINC study.
Mass Screening Identifies Untreated AF in 5% of 75-76 Year Olds
sciencedaily.com, 31 August 2013
Mass screening in more than 25,000 Swedish residents has identified untreated atrial fibrillation in 5 percent of 75-76 year olds, putting them at increased stroke risk.
With or without AF, risk of first stroke rises with risk-factor prevalence
theheart.org, 31 August 2013
Amsterdam, the Netherlands - As the number of ischemic-stroke risk factors goes up in persons without a history of stroke or atrial fibrillation (AF), so does the risk of stroke—so much so that with at least three risk factors, the stroke risk rises to rival that in patients with AF, suggests an analysis of more than four million persons in healthcare registries across Denmark.
CHADS2 risk score assigns over one-third of stroke patients to low or intermediate stroke risk
medicalxpress.com, 1 September 2013
The CHADS2 stroke risk scores 0 or 1 assign more than one-third of patients in atrial fibrillation with stroke to low or intermediate risk not mandating oral anticoagulation, according to research presented at ESC Congress 2013 today by Professor Michael Nabauer from Germany.
Pacemaker for slow heart rhythm restores life expectancy
medicalxpress.com, 2 September 2013
Pacemakers implanted for slow heart rhythm restore life expectancy to normal levels, reveals research presented at ESC Congress 2013 today by Dr Erik O. Udo from the Netherlands. The findings provide a new reference point for the prognosis of modern pacemaker patients.
Framingham Heart Study funding cut by 40%
theheart.org, 28 August 2013
Boston, MA - The longest-running US trial of cardiovascular disease has seen its funding slashed by 40%, and while the Framingham Heart Study (FHS) is still open and ongoing, there will be layoffs later this year and clinical examinations and laboratory activities will be eliminated.
Tailored Afib Care Called For
medpagetoday.com, 28 August 2013
Emerging technology might provide a more personalized approach to help reduce the death and morbidity in atrial fibrillation patients, according to a European consensus statement.
Under-the-Skin ICD Affirmed Safe, Effective
medpagetoday.com, 27 August 2013
The subcutaneous implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) was safe and effective in the full pivotal trial results finally being published, but the device still has limitations.
ICD/pacemaker implantation: Continued warfarin outperforms bridging with LMWH
theheart.org, 19 August 2013
The seemingly counterintuitive results of the BRUISE trial—which show that continued anticoagulation using warfarin is better than bridging with low-molecular-weight heparin (LMWH)—remind us of the ever-evolving nature of medicine. Will the novel oral anticoagulants prove to be even safer than warfarin? Trials are under way.
Screening to identify unknown atrial fibrillation
thrombosis-online.com, April 2013
Atrial fibrillation (AF) is associated with a significantly increased
stroke risk which is highly preventable with appropriate oral anticoagulant therapy (OAC). However, AF may be asymptomatic and unrecognised prior to stroke.
First patients enrolled in new study design of ARTISAN-AF trial for the treatment of atrial fibrillation
cxvascular.com, 6 August 2013
On 5 August, Hansen Medical announced that the first patients have been successfully enrolled in the new study design of its ARTISAN-AF study, a pivotal clinical trial evaluating the use of Hansen Medical’s Artisan family of control catheters with its Sensei X Robotic Catheter System for treatment of atrial fibrillation.
Single-chamber ICDs with novel detection algorithms show low inappropriate shock rate
cxvascular.com, 7 August 2013
Primary results from the PainFree SST study have shown that 97.6% of patients were free from inappropriate shocks with single-chamber implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICDs) at one year of implantation.
Heart Rhythm Congress 2013
arwatch.co.uk, August 2013
Delegates are invited to attend the eighth annual Heart Rhythm Congress (HRC) at the International Convention Centre (ICC) in Birmingham UK from 20-23 October 2013.
AF-A Medical Advisory Committee member Dr Andrew Grace joins Arrhythmia & Electrophysiology Review
8 August 2013, London – Arrhythmia & Electrophysiology Review today announces the appointment of Dr Andrew Grace to the position of Deputy Editor – Arrhythmia Mechanisms / Basic Science.
Dr Grace serves as a Consultant Cardiologist at Papworth Hospital Cambridge and as Research Group Head in the Department of Biochemistry at the University of Cambridge. Clinically he has a general electrophysiology practice focussing on catheter ablation techniques for atrial fibrillation and has overseen the development of one of the UK’s largest clinical practices for cardiac arrhythmia management. His pre-clinical research program has taken a systems approach to studying arrhythmia mechanisms. Prior to his current roles, Dr Grace trained in medicine at St Thomas’ Hospital in London, and completed his PhD in Cambridge before undertaking post-doctoral studies as a Fulbright Scholar at the University of California San Diego.
On the appointment, Dr Demosthenes Katritsis, Editor-in-Chief of AER, commented, "It gives us great pleasure to welcome Dr Grace to the position of Deputy Editor – Arrhythmia Mechanisms / Basic Science. Dr Grace has a reputation of international standing in this field and I am sure that his guidance will be invaluable in assisting AER in fulfilling its aims of providing trusted teaching reviews of real educational value for both the arrhythmologist and general cardiologist."
Consensus statement on paediatric arrhythmias released by ESC and AEPC
escardio.org, 18 July 2013
A joint consensus statement on the treatment of paediatric arrhythmias has been released by the European Heart Rhythm Association (EHRA) of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) and the Association for European Paediatric and Congenital Cardiology (AEPC).
Cardiac Ablation: Linking Outcomes for NICE (CALON) project launched
CALON is a project which will link patient information from different sources to give improved information on cardiac ablation. The project is being conducted on behalf of NICE, who make recommendations about whether interventional procedures are safe and effective enough for routine use. NICE is interested in assessing the feasability and usefulness of linking patient records from existing sources of data.
View August newsletter
NHS England publishes its response to consultation on specialised service specifications and commissioning policies
NHS England has published its response, Consultation on Specialised Services Specifications and Commissioning Policies 2013/14: Summary and Response from NHS England, to consultation earlier this year on the service specifications and commissioning policies which support its specialised commissioning function.