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Risk Factors

December 28, 2009 | By Jeannine Stein
Poverty appears to trump smoking, obesity and education as a health burden, potentially causing a loss of 8.2 years of perfect health. In a new study, researchers looked at health and life expectancy data from the National Health Interview Surveys and the Medical Expenditure Panel Surveys and came up with various behavioral and social risk factors that affect quality of life, then used a formula to estimate the quality-adjusted years of life that...
January 25, 2012 | By Karen Kaplan, Los Angeles Times/For the Booster Shots blog
They're called “risk factors” for a reason - people with high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol and/or a smoking habit are much more likely to have heart attacks, strokes and other manifestations of cardiovascular disease, including death. A new study coming out in Thursday's edition of the New England Journal of Medicine analyzed health data on more than 250,000 adults to confirm that those who had any of these risk factors were in greater peril than those who didn't.
February 1, 2011 | By Thomas H. Maugh II, Los Angeles Times
One out of every three adult Americans has high cholesterol levels and two-thirds of them do not have it under control, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Tuesday. Similarly, one out of every three adults has high blood pressure and half of them do not have it under control. High blood pressure and high cholesterol are two of the major risk factors for heart attacks, strokes and other cardiovascular diseases, which are the leading cause of death in the United States, killing 800,000 people every year.
November 6, 2012 | By Amina Khan, Los Angeles Times
Black men and women are twice as likely to die from coronary heart disease as white men and women, according to a study led by University of Alabama doctors. Death rates from heart attacks and coronary heart disease have fallen since the 1970s, but that statement rings far truer for whites than for blacks. Studies have shown a widening gap between whites and blacks in heart disease deaths and in heart-attack hospitalizations, and new research pins down just how deadly that difference is. A paper published in this week's Journal of the American Medical Assn.
May 17, 1991 | From United Press International
A survey of more than 3,000 surgeons shows that none appear to have been infected with the deadly AIDS virus from a patient, federal health officials reported Thursday. Dr. Augusto Sarmiento, president of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, called the results encouraging for both physicians and the public.
July 20, 2010
Health screenings — they might be tedious, expensive, and time-consuming, but they also can be worth it, even if you're a healthy young adult. Take the case of cholesterol screening. Even though today approximately two-thirds of young adults have one or more risk factors for coronary heart disease, less than 50% of them are screened for high cholesterol, according to a study published in the July-August issue of the Annals of Family Medicine . Coronary heart disease, also known as coronary artery disease, is a buildup of calcium, plaque and fatty material in the arteries that restricts the flow of blood and oxygen to the heart and can lead to a heart attack.
August 22, 1999 | From Associated Press
Should you take a statin? It depends on whether you already have heart disease, how high your cholesterol is and whether you have other medical problems that put you at risk. Many people already know their total cholesterol. But to make a decision about statins, it's also necessary to measure the levels of the two major types of cholesterol, LDL and HDL. (LDL is the artery-clogging variety that causes heart trouble; HDL helps prevent it.
January 7, 1990
The article ("Heart Disease in the Executive Suite," Dec. 10) was informative, but there was only one brief reference to one of the most significant causes of heart attacks--cigarette smoking. The statement by the specialist in cardiac rehabilitation that "the business person takes control and by choice joins a cardiac rehabilitation program" is not entirely true. The business person usually has health insurance, which pays for this program. Of the $2.5 billion spent on coronary bypass surgery each year in the United States, 99% of these patients have health insurance.
July 15, 2010 | By Duke Helfand, Los Angeles Times
David Axene was flat on his back in a hospital bed with a swollen left leg. His kidneys had shut down. His blood pressure had plunged. Doctors pumped him with potent antibiotics to stave off a deadly infection. Yet there he was sifting through spreadsheets on his laptop, cradling his cellphone to his ear, waving off doctors to finish another conference call. California's top insurance watchdogs had hired Axene to scour Anthem Blue Cross' files for any flaw in the voluminous paperwork that accompanied its rate hikes of up to 39%. Anthem's plan to impose higher premiums March 1 had outraged consumers and politicians alike.
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