Heart Failure Toolkit Launch
We have confirmed that Pumping Marvellous will be handing over it’s first Heart Failure toolkits to the NHS on 14th February 2013 on the cardiology wards at the Royal Blackburn. the HEart Failure toolkit has 42 components and is a complete self care patient management system. We believe that this is the most comprehensive discharge and educational coaching tool for heart failure patients. If you have any questions about our toolkit or would like to have the toolkit for your trust then please email us.
Seaweed Juice may save Heart Attack patients?
An Australian grandmother had a liquid derived from seaweed injected into her heart, in a world-first procedure poised to dramatically boost heart attack survival rates. Pauline Fulton underwent the treatment in a Melbourne hospital two weeks ago, two days after she suffered a major heart attack. Dr. William van Gaal, a cardiologist who performed the procedure, said it could revolutionize treatment for heart attack patients and save lives.
But it was hoped the liquid, bio-absorbable cardiac matrix, would prevent the heart enlarging, and heart failure developing.
In the 30-minute procedure, van Gaal injected 0.13 fluid ounces of the “liquid device” into the blocked artery, which was absorbed by the damaged heart muscle.
It then formed a gel that acted as a scaffold to support the heart muscle as it recovered and prevented the organ becoming bigger, he said. After six weeks, the liquid device, which had no side-effects, would dissolve and be excreted from the body through the kidneys.
Standard treatment was to give patients tablets to prevent their heart enlarging, but they were not always effective, van Gaal said.
Fulton, 64, became the first of 300 patients who will have the experimental treatment in a worldwide study.
It could be routine treatment within three years, van Gaal said.
Don’t get depressed with Heart Failure
Having Heart Failure myself I fully understand why people get depressed – for me the reasons for this are long and complicated however it is not all doom and gloom and if ou follow this website then it will benefit you as you will see your life in a different. I am not saying it is a substitute for clinical and professional support service guidnace but it is a realistic bolt on. Anyway here is the article.
A recent study has reported that people who have suffered heart failure and are provided treatment for depression are more likely to die, when compared to people, who don’t develop the psychological problem. It has been reported that almost 50% people, who develop the condition after heart failure and are treated for it die within a span of one-and-a-half-years.
The findings were reported after a study was carried out by a team of scientists from Denmark. The total numbers of people involved in the study were around 3,300, who had suffered heart failure. It was also reported by the researchers that people, who were the most likely to suffer a heart failure were prescribed a lower quantity of beta blockers.
Meanwhile, another research that was carried out in the UK has reported that people who suffer a heart failure and are admitted to a general ward hospital are two times more likely to die, when compared to those who receive treatment in a cardiology wards.
The study has already appeared in the journal, Heart and was carried out by a team of researchers from universities and colleges across the country.
Variation in Mortality Rates for Heart Failure Patients
Another reason for Pumping Marvellous to exist and flourish, especially for those without support.
A major new audit of heart failure patients in England and Wales has uncovered wide variations in mortality rates.
The National Heart Failure Audit analysed 21,294 medical records for patients admitted to hospital for heart failure between April 2009 and March 2010. It found that, overall, about 32 per cent of heart failure patients died within a year of hospital admission.
The report underlined the value of cardiologists and specialist heart failure services, as mortality rates fell to 23 per cent for patients with access to these. It also showed that in-patient mortality is 12 per cent for heart failure patients on a non-cardiac ward, compared to just six per cent for those on dedicated cardiac wards.
Clinical lead Dr Theresa McDonagh, chair of the British Society for Heart Failure, said: ‘This audit shows that patients admitted to hospital with heart failure have an unacceptably high death rate.
‘Outcomes for these patients can be significantly improved by having specialist cardiology input to their care, administration of appropriate evidence-based doses of key drugs and follow-up by specialist services.’
The audit, which is run jointly by the NHS Information Centre and the British Society for Heart Failure, also revealed that many patients do not get the recommended dose of drugs such as ACE inhibitors and beta blockers.
Just 60 per cent of patients for whom dosing information was available were prescribed beta blockers – which can reduce mortality by around a third – and two-thirds received less than half of the recommended dose.
And of those patients for whom information was available on ACE inhibitors – which can halve mortality during the first year after discharge – half received less than 50 per cent of the target dose.
Dr Mike Knapton, associate medical director of the British Heart Foundation, said that treatment for heart failure should be given the same priority as that for heart attacks.
‘But while there have been huge improvements in the management of heart attack patients, the same cannot be said for people with heart failure,’ he claimed.
‘There are more than 700,000 people living with heart failure in the UK and this number is set to increase, so it’s vital we address this issue.’
Without sounding arrogant we could have told you so on each statement made within the commentary above.
Heart failure research at Royal Cornwall Hospital Trust gets £100,000 grant The lives of people recovering from heart failure could be transformed after a team of researchers at the Royal Cornwall Hospital Trust were awarded £100,000 to study different types of rehabilitation. Dr Hasnain Dalal and researcher Jenny Wingham are leading the ground-breaking study, which will look at whether home or medical centre-based rehabilitation offers the best recovery chances for cardiac patients.The grant was awarded by the National Institute of Health Research and Dr Dalal, who also works as a GP at the Three Spires Practice in Truro and is a lecturer at the Peninsula Medical School, said it would be put to good use. “We feel very proud that we have been able to get this funding,” he said. “It is a very competitive grant to apply for and there were no guarantees we would get it.” Although Dr Dalal is leading the study, the team is working with several other centres all over the UK and RCHT consultant cardiologist Robin Van Lingen. Dr Dalal has been working in the field of cardiac rehabilitation research for more than ten years and with Mrs Wingham has previously completed a study on home versus hospital-based rehabilitation for patients who have suffered heart attacks. According to the latest figures, around 900,000 people are affected by heart failure in the UK, but only a small percentage receive cardiac rehabilitation. The grant, which funds research for a year, is the first one to be awarded in Cornwall.
Vitamin D and Heart Failure
An interesting topic that was debated at the European Cardiology Society’s Annual Event in Stockholm was how important Vitamin D was to Heart Failure Patients. As a point I currently take high dose Vitamin D.
As always be aware that this information was a study that was presented at the medical conference. The findings should be considered preliminary as they have not yet undergone validation process, in which outside experts scrutinize the data prior to publication in a medical journal.
Low vitamin D levels are associated with a higher risk of death and hospitalisation in people with heart failure, researchers have reported.
The study doesn’t prove that low vitamin D levels place patients at higher risk of dying. Even if the findings are confirmed, low levels of vitamin D may be a marker for some other damaging factor.
The hope is that vitamin D supplements may be able to improve outcomes among people with heart failure, but this still needs to be put to the test.
Vitamin D is best known for helping the body absorb calcium, which restores and strengthens bone, protecting against fracture. But more and more studies suggest that low vitamin D levels are associated with the risk for a host of diseases, including certain cancers and kidney disease.
After several small studies linked low levels of vitamin D to poor outcomes in people with heart failure, Dutch researchers, led by Licette Liu, BSc, of the University Medical Center in Groningen, Netherlands, decided to start a larger study of 548 patients hospitalized with this condition.
Patients were divided into three groups depending on their blood levels of vitamin D: low (below 29.6 nanomoles per liter), intermediate (29.6 to 43.9 nanomoles per liter), and high (above 43.9 nanomoles per liter).
Over the 18 months of follow-up, 165 patients died and 142 were hospitalized again. Those patients with the lowest vitamin D levels were 30% more likely to be hospitalized again or die than people with the highest levels. The effect of vitamin D levels held even after accounting for other factors.
The findings were presented at the annual congress of the European Society of Cardiology.
No one knows exactly why vitamin D may help heart health.
But it may have anti-inflammatory effects that may help keep blood vessels healthy, Liu says.
In the study, low levels of the vitamin were associated with high levels of C-reactive protein (CRP), a measure of inflammation activity.
This study was not designed to show whether supplementing heart failure patients with vitamin D would improve prognosis or even if it was safe to do. Until vitamin D pills are proven to improve outcomes among people with heart failure who have a deficiency, patients should not take supplements unless prescribed by a doctor, says American Heart Association past president Clyde Yancy, MD, medical director of the Baylor Heart and Vascular Institute at Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas.
NURSING IN PRACTICE AWARDS
The East Lancs PCT Heart Failure Team are pleased to announce that they have been short listed for the National Nursing in Practice Award, for Cardiology Care. The team have been commended by the judges for “inspirational ideas into your daily practices and stood out among the rest”. The final will take place in Birmingham NEC, in November and are hoping to bring off the big prize.
Heart Failure Clinical Lead
East Lancs Heart Failure Team
What an absolutley fantastic result so far. This team is one of the reasons why Pumping Marvellous was developed. What an inspirational bunch you are!!!! go team East Lancs
Really interesting piece of News
Presenting at the UK National Stem Cell Network annual science conference (13 July), Professor Michael Schneider describes a new approach to treating heart attack and cardiomyopathy using stem cells.
Professor Schneider, British Heart Foundation Professor at Imperial College London, said “Recent clinical trials using stem cells to treat heart damage have been successful in terms of safety but unfortunately the bone marrow stem cells used tend to give only a small improvement in how well the heart is pumping.
“We really want to use stem cells from the patients themselves that we know can give rise to beating heart cells and these are not found in bone marrow. The good news is that we’re now finding ways to identify and purify such cells.”
Around 1000 patients have been treated in approximately 20 trials worldwide, mostly using bone marrow stem cells or derivatives of bone marrow cells to repair damage caused by heart attack. There has also been a significant body of work looking at ways of producing beating heart cells from stem cells. The best proven approaches to creating new beating heart cells are using embryonic stem cells, induced pluripotent cells and heart-derived stem cells.
Professor Schneider continued: “Using heart-derived stem cells to treat heart attack and cardiomyopathy has some advantages over embryonic and induced pluripotent cells as they are potentially safer. It’s also notable that of these three cell types, it’s only heart-derived cells that are in current human clinical trials for this sort of treatment.
“The biggest challenge is to make an ideal product for transplant, which would be either a mixture of heart muscle- and blood vessel-forming cells or a pure population of some sort of precursor that could give rise to both muscle and blood vessel cells.”
Professor Schneider’s team have discovered a way to identify heart stem cells so as to purify them for transplant. They first developed the method in mice and although the identifying markers are quite different in human cells, they have been able to successfully map their knowledge from mice onto humans. This research is funded by the British Heart Foundation, the European Research Council, the European Union (through the EU FP7 CardioCell consortium), the Leducq Foundation and the Medical Research Council.
Professor Schneider said “We’ve developed a method to identify cells that have three important characteristics: They are definitely stem cells; they have the right molecular machinery turned on in order to become heart muscle or blood vessel; and they don’t yet have any of the full characteristics of heart muscle or blood vessel cells such as producing cardiac myosin – an important protein in heart muscle cells.”
The next stage of the research is to develop this technique into a method for extracting, purifying and multiplying heart stem cells in the clinic to be used to repair heart damage arising from heart attack or cardiomyopathy. Professor Schneider’s laboratory uses advanced robotics, automated microscopy and other high-throughput methods to screen many thousands of experimental conditions in order to devise the best ways to grow the cells and instruct them to go down the route of becoming heart muscle.
So what is an Echocardiogram – usually referred to as Echo
We have tried to keep this simple and easy reading so you can digest it at you own pace. It sounds invasive even frightening but it isn’t. I have had to already, its a bit like ultrasound on your chest and the jelly is a little cold.
The echocardiogram test decides for sure whether or not you have heart failure. An echocardiogram is painless. A pulse of harmless, high-frequency sound waves is passed through the chest wall, and these bounce back from the structures in the heart.
For the test, you will be asked to lie on your left side with your left arm behind your head. Lubricating jelly is put on your chest, and the ultrasound probe (recorder) is placed at various points on the chest between the ribs. The probe picks up echoes from the heart and shows them on the screen as a detailed picture (echocardiogram) of the structures of the heart.
The test allows the operator to find out a lot of information about the heart, including:
• How well the valves are working, and whether any of them are damaged.
• How well the heart is working as a pump (i.e. systolic function when the beat or contraction of your heart forces blood to circulate around the body).
• How well the heart relaxes after pumping (i.e. diastolic function when the heart relaxes after each beat or contraction, allowing it to fill with blood).
• Whether there are holes in the walls between the chambers of the heart, disrupting the one-way system of blood flow and allowing blood to flow from one side to the other (intracardiac shunts).
The most important finding from an echocardiograph is usually a measurement of how well one of the chambers of your heart the left ventricle is pumping. The left ventricle pumps the blood around the body. The wall of the left ventricle is normally much thicker than the wall of the right ventricle, because the right ventricle only pumps blood to the lungs and back.
This measurement, called the left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF), is an estimate of how much of the blood that enters the left ventricle is pumped out when the heart muscle beats (contracts). In a healthy heart, about 60% of the blood entering the left ventricle gets pumped out when the heart muscle contracts. So a normal LVEF would be around 60%. A value of less than 40% would indicate that the heart is not pumping well.
Sometimes different types of echocardiogram are performed. These include:
This is an echocardiogram that is carried out to see how the heart functions when it has to work extra hard. It is performed by increasing the persons heart rate, either by exercise on a treadmill or exercise bike, or by special medication.
This test is carried out when doctors need to look at your heart valves in more detail. Pictures of your heart are taken from inside your body, by passing a small probe mounted at the end of a thin flexible tube down your oesophagus (the tube that connects your mouth to your stomach). Before the test, you may be given a mild sedative to help you relax, and an anaesthetic will be sprayed on the back of your throat to make you more comfortable. While the probe is in your oesophagus, pictures of your heart are taken. The probe is then gently withdrawn.
Twitter is a great way of connecting with the Pumping Marvellus community. It allows patients to connect with patients from other NHS Trusts. These are the benefits –
It’s free to interact with Pumping Marvellous
It is run by patients with Heart Failure specifically for patients with Heart Failure
It is a great wealth of resource for patients, carers and families effected by Heart Failure to understand the condition better and come to terms with it
NHS trusts and Heart Failure Teams should direct their patients to Pumping Marvellous as a way of communicating differently with their patients, in other words we don’t talk like doctors and nurses.