The latest news on chronic, acute, and preventive care across the health care landscape.
Chronic: Depression Identified as Strongest Predictor of Death in Patients Diagnosed with Heart Disease
Individuals who have depression and are diagnosed with coronary heart disease are twice as likely to die compared with individuals without depression, according to a study. The investigators analyzed health records from almost 25,000 Intermountain Healthcare patients tracked for an average of nearly 10 years following a diagnosis of coronary heart disease. Approximately 15% of patients received a follow-up diagnosis of depression. Of 3646 individuals with a follow-up diagnosis of depression, half died during the study period compared with 38% of the 20,491 individuals without depression. Based on the findings, the investigators suggest that clinicians seek out better ways to identify depression in patients with heart disease. “It can be devastating to be diagnosed with coronary artery disease,” said Heidi May, PhD, MSPH. “Clinicians need to pay attention to the things their patients are expressing, in terms of both physical symptoms as well as emotional and nonverbal factors.”
Acute: Stress Caused by Major Life Events Affect Women More Than Man
Investigators have identified a potential gender gap in stress induced by major life events, with women reporting higher stress from live events such as illness, death of a loved one, Brexit, and losing their smartphone. For the study, investigators asked 2000 individuals to rate how stressful key life events were. The most significant findings showed that Scotland was the most stressed out area, whereas the southeast of England was the least stressed. The east of England was notably upset by delays in their communities, while Londoners found that preparing for vacation caused the most stress. Some life events suggested that stress increases with age, particularly in individuals with illness or who are imprisoned. Exceptions to the trend were the lose off a smartphone. This was rated highest among individuals aged 25 to 35 years. The investigators found the greatest variety of responses regarding Brexit. Individuals aged 18 to 24 years were most likely to feel stressed by that event. Those living in Scotland and London were more stressed by Brexit than individuals living in Wales and much of the rest of England. “It was striking that for every single event in this study, from money problems to Brexit, women reported greater stress levels than men,” commented Dr Lucy Donaldson, chair of the Physiological Society’s Policy Committee. “This could have a real impact on women’s health.”
Preventive: Two-Part, Long-Lasting Ebola Vaccination on Standby
A 2-part Ebola shot induced a durable immune response that lasted a full year in 100% of vaccinated healthy volunteers, according toReuters. The long-lasting vaccine requires 1 dose to prime the human system, followed by a second shot to boost the body’s response. The “prime-boost” vaccine was developed by Johnson & Johnson and Bavarian Nordic, and it is currently being tested in large global trials that include more than 1000 individuals in Africa. Although results from the studies are still pending, the vaccine has already been submitted to the World Health Organization for emergency use assessment and listing. In the event of another Ebola crisis outbreak, Johnson & Johnson said it has stockpile of 1.8 million dosing regimens on standby with the capacity to produce several million more if needed,Reutersreported.