Medical history, physical examination and laboratory testing are not optimal for the assessment of volume status in heart failure (HF) patients. We aimed to study the clinical influence of focused ultrasound of the pleural cavities and inferior vena cava (IVC) performed by specialised nurses to assess volume status in HF patients at an outpatient clinic.
HF outpatients were prospectively included and underwent laboratory testing, history recording and clinical examination by two nurses with and without an ultrasound examination of the pleural cavities and IVC using a pocket-size imaging device, in random order. Each nurse worked in a team with a cardiologist. The influence of the different diagnostic tests on diuretic dosing was assessed descriptively and in linear regression analyses.
Sixty-two patients were included and 119 examinations were performed. Mean±SD age was 74±12 years, EF was 34±14%, and N-terminal pro-brain natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) value was 3761±3072 ng/L. Dosing of diuretics differed between the teams in 31 out of 119 consultations. Weight change and volume status assessed clinically with and without ultrasound predicted dose adjustment of diuretics at follow-up (p
Low-dose drug therapy is promoted as a way to maximize benefit and minimize adverse drug effects when prescribing for older adults. This population-based study evaluates the age and sex-related use of two common therapies: thiazide diuretics, where evidence supports the use of low-dose therapy, and beta-blockers, where trials have not evaluated the minimum effective dose.
Using linked administrative databases we identified all of the 120,613 persons dispensed a thiazide diuretic therapy and 12,908 myocardial infarction survivors dispensed beta-blocker therapy in Canada's largest province. We used logistic regression models to study the association of age and sex with dispensing of low-dose thiazide diuretic and beta-blocker therapy at doses lower than evaluated in trials.
Of 120,613 older people dispensed a thiazide diuretic, 32,372 (26.8%) were dispensed a low dose. Patients 85 years of age or older, relative to the youngest group, were 30% more likely to be dispensed low-dose therapy (OR=1.31; 95% CI, 1.27 to 1.36; P
The relation between eating disorders and menstrual function has been widely studied, but it is unknown whether the behavior of binge eating itself is related to menstrual dysfunction.
The 11,503 women included in this study were from the Swedish Twin study of Adults: Genes and Environment. The associations between menstrual dysfunction and binge eating were analyzed using logistic regression or multiple linear regression models with generalized estimation equations.
Women who reported lifetime binge eating were more likely to report either amenorrhea or oligomenorrhea than women who reported no binge eating. These results persisted when controlling for compensatory behaviors including self-induced vomiting, laxative use, and diuretic use. No differences between women with and without a history of binge eating were observed for age at menarche.
Even when controlling for the effect of compensatory behaviors, the behavior of binge eating is associated with menstrual dysfunction. Metabolic and endocrinological factors could underlie this association. Careful evaluation of menstrual status is warranted for women with all eating disorders, not just anorexia nervosa.
Differences and time trends in drug treatment of atrial fibrillation in men and women and doctors' adherence to warfarin therapy recommendations: a Swedish study of prescribed drugs in primary care in 2002 and 2007.
Little is known about prescription trends in atrial fibrillation (AF) in primary health care in Sweden.
The aim was to study time trends in pharmacotherapy, in men and women with AF. We also aimed at studying doctors' adherence to CHADS2 for prescribing warfarin. CHADS2 assesses stroke risk by presence of known risk factors, i.e., congestive heart failure, hypertension, age >75 years, diabetes, previous stroke and transient ischemic attack.
Data were obtained from primary health care records that contained individual clinical data. In total, 371,036 patients were included in the sample from 2002, and 424,329 patients were included in the sample from 2007. The study population consisted of individuals aged 45+ years who were diagnosed with AF in 2002 (1,330 men and 1,096 women) and 2007 (2,748 men and 2,234 women). The pharmacotherapies prescribed in 2002 and 2007 were analyzed separately in men and women. Logistic regression was used to calculate the association between the CHADS2 score and prescribed warfarin treatment.
Selective beta-blockers, anti-coagulant therapy and lipid-lowering drugs were prescribed more frequently in 2007 than in 2002. In 2007, antithrombotic and RAS-blocking agents were prescribed more frequently to men, whereas beta-1 selective beta-blockers were prescribed more frequently to women. There was no consistent association between the CHADS2 score and prescribed warfarin treatment.
Pharmacotherapy of AF has improved over time, though CHADS2 guidelines need to be implemented systematically in primary health care in Sweden to decrease the risk of stroke and improve quality of life in patients with AF.
AIMS: A large number of drugs are currently used for the treatment of chronic heart failure. Treatment for other cardiovascular disorders has been shown to differ between countries. In this study we examined whether this would also be true in heart failure. METHODS AND RESULTS: We studied patients with moderate to severe heart failure, who were enrolled in an international survival study, and compared patterns of drug use between the nine countries that each included >50 patients in the study. The results were analysed to determine whether observed differences between countries could be explained by differences in the patients recruited. 1825 patients were studied (range 81-427 per country). By trial protocol, most patients were treated with angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors (92%) and all with diuretics, but the proportion of patients taking high doses of these drugs was markedly different between countries. Large differences were also observed in the use of digoxin (overall 64%, 39% in the U.K. to 87% in Germany) and antiarrhythmics (overall 25%, with the highest use 44% in France). The use of beta-blockers and calcium antagonists was low (overall 6% and 8%, respectively), but also different between countries. Anticoagulants (overall 43%) were used in many patients in the Netherlands and Switzerland (around 70%), while antiplatelets (overall use 30%) were most often prescribed in Denmark (51%). CONCLUSIONS: Large differences in drug use and dosing for patients with advanced heart failure are observed between (European) countries. None of these differences could be explained by differences in patient characteristics, and whether they are related to factors such as tradition, economic circumstances and national guidelines, etc. is unknown.
Comment In: Eur Heart J. 1999 May;20(9):637-810419343
This report evaluates the effectiveness of a titration-based, escalating dose regimen based on trandolapril in subjects with isolated systolic hypertension (ISH) treated in Canadian clinical practice.
Substudy of the TRAIL (Trandolapril Regimen Applied In real Life) study; a prospective, open-label, single cohort, multicentre study in 192 Canadian primary care practices. Subjects with ISH received trandolapril therapy, initiated at 1 mg/day (0.5 mg/day in subjects on diuretics) and increased to 2 or 4 mg at 4 and 9 weeks, respectively, in those not achieving blood-pressure (BP) targets, subject to tolerability. If BP was not controlled after 14 weeks of treatment subjects could be put on trandolapril 4 mg/verapamil 240 mg while continuing the diuretic, or verapamil could be added to the existing regimen. The observation period was 26 weeks. The primary outcome measure was the achievement of target BP levels after 14 weeks.
The prevalence of open angle glaucoma increases with age, with many patients also receiving medications for non-ocular systemic diseases. Little is known about how systemic medications impact on the need for adjunctive therapy with prostaglandin analogues (PGA).
To evaluate whether systemic medications for hypertension, cholesterol, or glucose influence the need for adjunctive intraocular pressure (IOP) lowering medications in patients using PGAs.
Pharmaceutical records from the Québec prescription database provided a sample of patients receiving prescriptions for bimatoprost, latanoprost, or travoprost, from which subjects receiving > or =1 prescription for antihypertensives, antidiabetics. diuretics, and statins were identified. Chi-square tests compared proportions using PGAs to those using PGAs + adjunctive therapy, based on the use or non-use of systemic medications; a logistic regression was performed post hoc to adjust for gender and age.
Of the 8548 evaluated patients (all using PGAs); 2934 (34.3%) took none of the studied systemic drugs. For the 5614 patients taking systemic medications, significantly fewer (p