Heart health starts in childhood to avoid cardiovascular disease, hypertension, obesity, and diabetes. Kids today have developed so many bad health habits that they are facing heart attacks in their 30s. Many experts predict they will be the first generation to have a lower life expectancy than their parents.  But it doesn’t need to be this way. Parents like you have a significant influence over your kid’s habits. By modeling ...

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Test your medicine knowledge with the MKSAP challenge, in partnership with the American College of Physicians. A 66-year-old man is evaluated in the hospital following ST-elevation myocardial infarction treated with primary percutaneous coronary intervention of the left anterior descending artery 4 days ago. His initial presentation was complicated by the presence of heart failure and pulmonary edema. He is asymptomatic and ambulating, and he is ...

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We were in the middle of the morning routine – sign out between mouthfuls of eggs and homefries – when the call came in overhead, “Code Blue, 9 West.  Code Blue, 9 West.”  Just like that, our team snapped into action, the continued banter only thinly concealing a change in demeanor: backs straight, jaws set, we walked with a sense of purpose.  There was a life on the line. By the ...

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Test your medicine knowledge with the MKSAP challenge, in partnership with the American College of Physicians. A 65-year-old woman is evaluated during a routine examination. She was diagnosed with a cardiac murmur in early adulthood. She is active, healthy, and without symptoms. She takes no medications. On physical examination, vital signs are normal. A grade 3/6 holosystolic murmur preceded by multiple clicks is present at the ...

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You wouldn’t have known it by looking, but Viktor had once been on several modestly successful television shows. He lived for acting. It brought him joy and purpose. So much so that it was the first thing he mentioned to any who happen to pass through his single room next to the nursing station. Viktor was almost famous, definitely broke. His little space in the nursing home ...

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Test your medicine knowledge with the MKSAP challenge, in partnership with the American College of Physicians. A 56-year-old woman is evaluated during an appointment to establish care. She has a developmental delay, and she is known to have pulmonary hypertension due to a congenital cardiac condition. There is no history of cardiac surgery. She is on low-dose aspirin and thyroid replacement therapy. On physical examination, blood ...

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My 81-year-old patient came in several weeks ago and disclosed that he had stopped taking his aspirin after watching a news report on television. “They said I didn’t need it anymore,” he told me. I gently informed him that this news didn’t apply to him. He was responding to a recent study in the New England Journal of Medicine, which showed that aspirin failed to prevent ...

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Recently the Apple Watch’s latest feature went live – an electrocardiogram (ECG) app that monitors irregular heart rhythms. The internet is overflowing with reports from people didn’t know they had irregular heartbeats until they took their data to their doctors and received diagnoses of atrial fibrillation (AFib), a common cause of stroke. As neurologists who treat stroke patients, we welcome technology that enables patients to receive faster diagnoses and better treatment. ...

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I’ve been mean to my body lately. And since I know better, I talk negatively to myself about why I continue to be mean to my body. Lately, I’ve been considering why I do this -- why we do this -- and how to think about ourselves differently. Several months ago I had immobilizing low back pain. I broke my low back in high school, and this pain was similar. After ...

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Coffee —"because of the caffeine which it holds," described Dr. Henry Elsner in a 1911 review article in the journal of Hypertension and Arteriosclerosis — causes "increased rapidity of the heart's action. It makes the heart irritable, it increases the power of the heart's contractions, it places an extra load upon the kidneys, increasing the urine flow. Because of these effects, I have for some time ...

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