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Risk Factors

HEALTH
November 11, 2011 | By Shari Roan, Los Angeles Times
As Americans — including even young children — continue to get fatter, their risk for heart disease is climbing too. So a panel of experts now is recommending that all kids have their cholesterol checked at least once between ages 9 and 11 and again between 17 and 21. Although children typically don't have heart attacks and strokes, evidence has been mounting for years that the roots of those diseases begin early in life, and the rising rates...
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NEWS
October 27, 2009 | By Shari Roan
Middle-aged men still have higher rates of heart attacks and heart disease than middle-aged women, but those gender differences appear to be narrowing, according to a study published Monday. The findings follow earlier research, published in a 2007 issue of the journal Neurology, establishing that stroke prevalence among women ages 45 to 54 was double that of men of the same age. Together, the findings suggest "an ominous trend in cardiovascular health among midlife women," said the lead author of both studies, Dr. Amytis Towfighi, an assistant professor of neurology at the University of Southern California.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 30, 2010 | By Garret Therolf
Responding to recent deaths among children who passed through Los Angeles County's child welfare system, Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas renewed his call Monday to improve the computer system designed to provide county agencies with information about a child's risk factors for abuse. The Times reported Sunday that an upgraded system for sharing information among agencies about suspicious injuries, domestic violence and other key risk factors was one of a number of unfinished reform efforts.
SCIENCE
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.
BUSINESS
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.
NEWS
February 14, 2012 | By Shari Roan, Los Angeles Times / For the Booster Shots blog
Flowers and Lakers tickets are nice Valentine's Day gifts. But a guide to taking care of your flesh-and-blood heart is a great idea too. Take a look at " Heart 411 : The Only Guide to Heart Health You'll Ever Need. " This new book is authored by two of the top guns in cardiology: Dr. Marc Gillinov and Dr. Steven Nissen of the Cleveland Clinic. The two doctors are on the cutting edge of heart health and have been outspoken about protecting consumers from harmful or unnecessary therapies.
NEWS
August 30, 2010
African Americans who receive drug-coated stents have triple the risk of having a blood clot compared with other racial groups, researchers reported Monday. Stents are used to open blocked coronary arteries. Drug-coated stents release medication that can prevent the artery from becoming blocked again. Blood clots are a known risk of the procedure, although the probability of a clot is relatively low. However, a study of more than 7,000 patients found the rate of a life-threatening blood clot is much higher in blacks.
NEWS
February 15, 2011 | By Eryn Brown, Los Angeles Times
Awareness of women's heart health has improved over the last 30 years, but cardiovascular disease still causes a woman to die every minute, reports an article in the journal Circulation   detailing the American Heart Assn.'s new cardiovascular disease prevention guidelines for women.   Many of the guidelines, which were released on Tuesday, are familiar.  To minimize risk, women should avoid smoking; should exercise regularly; should eat a diet packed with fruits, vegetables, whole grains and fish; should keep to a healthy body weight and should treat their heart disease once they know they have it. Doctors are also urged to screen patients for depression, because people who are receiving treatment for depression are more likely to follow medical advice than those who aren't.
HEALTH
April 5, 2010 | Los Angeles Times Health staff
Cancer, diabetes, accidents — heart disease trumps them all, killing more people in the United States than any other condition. The term is actually a fairly broad one, encompassing an array of conditions, but it's most often used as shorthand for coronary artery disease. The latter is caused by a buildup of plaque in the arteries that supply blood to the heart, which in turn can lead to chest pain, arrythmias, heart attacks and heart failure. The risk factors: High blood cholesterol High blood pressure Smoking Diabetes, insulin resistance or metabolic syndrome Being overweight Growing older Family history of heart disease What you can do: Get that high blood pressure and high cholesterol under control.
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