Heart attack risk calculators

The higher your chances of having a heart attack or ischemic stroke, the more important it is to take aspirin every day; the lower your chances, the less important it is. Several online calculators have been developed to help estimate your odds. The most commonly used heart attack calculator was developed by the Framingham Heart Study. A good one is the risk assessment tool made available by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. The newer Reynolds Risk Score, one for men and one for women, includes the Framingham variables plus family history and level of C-reactive protein. More »

June 2009 references and further reading

Marhsall SJ, Levy SS, Tudor-Locke CE, et al. Translating physical activity recommendations into a pedometer-based step goal. American Journal of Preventive Medicine 2009; 36(5):410-415 Meet the METs, Harvard Health Letter, September 2008 Spronk S, Bosch JL, den Hoed PT, Veen HF, Pattynama PM, Hunink MG. Intermittent claudication: clinical effectiveness of endovascular revascularization versus supervised hospital-based exercise training--randomized controlled trial. Radiology 2009; 250:586-95. (Locked) More »

Defining a moderate-intensity workout

A researcher has determined that the recommended "moderate intensity" exercise level can be accomplished by walking at least 100 steps per minute. An inexpensive pedometer can help you determine your walking speed. (Locked) More »

Exercise equals angioplasty for leg pain

Angioplasty can be used as a treatment for intermittent claudication in leg veins. While the results are quicker, equivalent benefits can be achieved with an exercise program combined with medication, without the risk and recovery period of surgery. (Locked) More »

In brief

Brief reports on giving proper attention to high triglycerides, undermining cardiovascular drug therapy with unhealthy lifestyle choices, and an apparent bonus from taking a statin: reduced risk of blood clots. (Locked) More »

Ask the doctor: How did my blood pressure suddenly become normal?

After being diagnosed with high blood pressure several years ago, I started taking diltiazem and Atacand. The results were good, giving me an average blood pressure of 110/65. I recently developed gastroenteritis and aspiration pneumonia. While I was in the hospital, my blood pressure got so low I was told to stop taking these medications. I have been off them since, and my blood pressure has remained normal, averaging 105/65. How can this be? Will high blood pressure return? (Locked) More »