Slow rehabilitation of drug-coated stents

Drug-coated stents were thought to cause a higher occurrence of thrombosis (clots) compared to bare-metal stents, but further research has shown the incidence to be about the same. Many people with a blocked artery could benefit from a drug-coated stent. (Locked) More »

Seeing the heart with sound

An echocardiogram creates images of the heart using sound waves. It can reveal a great deal of information useful to doctors in treating heart patients. (Locked) More »

Hypertension and diabetes - double trouble

People with hypertension should be tested for diabetes. Treating both conditions with lifestyle changes (exercise, weight loss, quitting smoking) can substantially reduce the risk of a heart attack or stroke. (Locked) More »

Joint inflammation may point the finger at heart disease

Inflammation from rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, or gout has been linked to an increased risk of heart disease. Drugs are being tested, but the current advice is to exercise, eat a healthy diet, and control weight, blood pressure, and cholesterol. (Locked) More »

When quitters are winners

Many people do not realize that smoking is as bad for cardiovascular health as it is for the lungs. Quitting has some almost-immediate benefits, and after 20 years quitters have the same risk of death as nonsmokers. (Locked) More »

In brief

Brief updates on a warfarin information booklet, a possible link between loop diuretics and bone loss, and a drug for peripheral artery disease that may also help prevent strokes. (Locked) More »

Ask the doctor: How long do I need to keep taking Plavix?

I need to catheterize myself. I had stents put in my heart and started taking Plavix. I sometimes see a tinge of blood in the catheter bag, though lately the blood flow has been more substantial. I am 88 years old. How long will I need to take Plavix? (Locked) More »

Ask the doctor: Is sotalol making me tired and heavier?

My doctor put me on a calcium-channel blocker, but after I had angioplasty and got a stent, my doctor switched me to sotalol. Now I feel tired all the time and have gained weight, even though I feel like I'm eating less. Can this be from the sotalol? (Locked) More »

Get the lead out

The leads of implanted cardiac devices can break or become infected over time. If this happens, the leads must be replaced. A defective lead can be left in the heart, but it is considered safer to have it removed. (Locked) More »