The online home for the primary care professionals managing patients with cardiovascular disease, diabetes and related diseases.

Editorial

Friday, 30 September 2011
Chronic kidney disease (CKD) has shot up the primary care agenda over the last few years, and is now well recognised as an independent risk factor for cardiovascular disease (CVD). At the same time, CVD is a risk factor for progression of CKD. The close links between CKD and CVD mean we have to get to grips with assessing patients' kidney function and ensuring those with CKD receive the treatment needed to prevent progression. This special issue devoted to CKD is full of step-by-step guides and illustrated articles to help you get to grips with this important condition.
Category: Editorial
Friday, 30 September 2011
There are 28 cardiac and stroke networks in the country. They play an important part in implementation of national strategies, enabling high-quality services to be planned and delivered to patients within the framework of primary and community care. One of the most useful contributions of the networks is provision of education and training for primary care staff. The "Back to Basics" material in this supplement forms the backbone of what is presented at study days. The articles cover some of the most common cardiovascular conditions that are seen in primary care, showing clearly what causes the symptoms, how best to assessand manage patients, and how the treatments actually work. They help healthcare workers both to understand these conditions and to explain them to patients, and therefore really improve patient care.
Category: Editorial
Friday, 30 September 2011
Cardiac and stroke networks enable change and support the implementation of national strategies, such as the National Stroke Strategy which was published in 2007. There are 28 cardiac and stroke networks in the country: they play a fundamental role in bringing together commissioners, providers and patients to plan and deliver high-quality services for their populations.
Category: Editorial
Thursday, 03 March 2011
Take your gin without the tonic: prolonged QTc interval and torsades de pointes - David Ripley, Fiona MacCormack, Mark Kinghan, Kate Willmer Torsades de pointes (TdP) is a life-threatening ventricular arrhythmia associated with prolongation of the QT interval. This case report describes one possible cause of acquired prolongation of the QT interval, and discusses more broadly the topic of antiarrhythmic drug side-effects and interactions.
Category: Editorial
Thursday, 27 January 2011
After myocardial infarction (MI) half of all patients will experience an episode of depression. We carried out the first survey of GP and primary care nurse attitudes and beliefs about depression in post-MI patients. Our sample was drawn from readers of two major cardiovascular journals: a total of 813 GPs and nurses responded. Primary care practitioners underestimated the prevalence of depression which is two and a half times more common in post-MI patients than estimated. Diagnosing depression was viewed as complex by both groups but much more so by nurses. Compared to nurses GPs had a much better understanding of the signs and symptoms of depression and were more confident in using depression screening tools. General acknowledgement of the negative impact that depression can have on outcomes was reported by the majority of participants. The practice of depression-trained professionals was more positive compared with those who had no recent education. If primary care practitioners address the epidemic of depression in post-MI patients, outcomes will be dramatically improved and lives could be saved.
Category: Editorial
Thursday, 27 January 2011
The most effective means of reducing the risk of complications associated with type 2 diabetes is to ensure that each patient achieves and maintains their individualised glycaemic target. New guidance from the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) providesrecommendations on using liraglutide (Victoza), a new option for patients who do not achieve target HbA1c using currently available therapies.
Category: Editorial
Thursday, 27 January 2011
Chronic clinical conditions have traditionally been regarded as individual disease categories within individual patients, although there is often considerable overlap across clinical systems. However, for those managing these patients the presence of various co-morbidities is all-too apparent. It may be time to consider a new approach to management of these patients. Cardiovascular morbidity and mortality in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is nearly double the rate in the general population without COPD. And for those with cardiovascular disease (CVD) and COPD, heart failure is the most common cause of hospitalisation.
Category: Editorial
Thursday, 27 January 2011
Echocardiography (ECHO) is the "gold standard" test in the diagnosis of heart failure. Brain natriuretic peptide (BNP) can be helpful to rule outpatients who do not require ECHO. This study used an elevated level of Nterminal prohormone BNP (NT-proBNP) as a criterion for referral to a new community heart failure clinic. Results showed that NT-proBNP could be a useful test in the management of heart failure. The researchers propose to institute age- and sex-related cut-offs to refine its place in the patient care pathway.
Category: Editorial

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