Publications by authors named "Carlos J Rodriguez"

173 Publications

Risk factor control across the spectrum of cardiovascular risk: Findings from the Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos (HCHS/SOL).

Am J Prev Cardiol 2021 Mar 13;5:100147. Epub 2021 Jan 13.

Department of Hospital Medicine, San Francisco VA Medical Center, San Francisco, CA, USA.

Background: Presence of cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors (RFs) should prompt patients and their providers to work aggressively towards controlling those that are modifiable. The extent to which a greater CVD RF burden is related to CVD RF control in a contemporary and diverse Hispanic/Latino population is not well-understood.

Methods: Using multicenter community-based data from the Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos, we assessed the self-reported prevalence of hypertension, hypercholesterolemia, diabetes, and prevalent CVD (ischemic heart disease or stroke). We used contemporaneous guidelines to define RF control. Multivariable logistic regression for complex survey sampling was used to examine whether having more CVD RFs was associated with CVD RF control (adjusting for age, sex, Hispanic background group, education, and health insurance).

Results: Our sample included 8521 participants with at least one CVD RF or prevalent CVD. The mean age in HCHS/SOL target population was 49 (SE 0.3) years and 56% were women. Frequency of one, two, or three self-reported CVD RFs was 57%, 26%, 8%, respectively, and overall 9% of participants had prevalent CVD. After adjusting for sociodemographic factors, compared to those reporting one CVD RF, individuals with three CVD RFs were the least likely to have blood pressure, cholesterol, and glucose optimally controlled (odds ratio [OR]: 0.56; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.40-0.80). However, those with prevalent CVD were more likely to have all three risk factors controlled, (OR: 1.43; 95% CI: 1.01-2.01).

Conclusion: Hispanic/Latino adults with three major CVD RFs represent a group with poor overall CVD RF control. Secondary CVD prevention fares better. The potential contributors to inadequate CVD RF control in this highly vulnerable group warrants further investigation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ajpc.2021.100147DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8315414PMC
March 2021

Associations between physical activity, sedentary behaviour and left ventricular structure and function from the Echocardiographic Study of Latinos (ECHO-SOL).

Open Heart 2021 07;8(2)

Department of Medicine, Epidemiology & Population Health, Albert Einstein College of Medicine Department of Neurology, Bronx, New York, USA.

Objective: The cross-sectional association between accelerometer-measured physical activity (PA), sedentary behaviour (SB) and cardiac structure and function is less well described. This study's primary aim was to compare echocardiographic measures of cardiac structure and function with accelerometer measured PA and SB.

Methods: Participants included 1206 self-identified Hispanic/Latino men and women, age 45-74 years, from the Echocardiographic Study of Latinos. Standard echocardiographic measures included M-mode, two-dimensional, spectral, tissue Doppler and myocardial strain. Participants wore an Actical accelerometer at the hip for 1 week.

Results: The mean±SE age for the cohort was 56±0.4 years, 57% were women. Average moderate to vigorous PA (MVPA) was 21±1.1 min/day, light PA was 217±4.2 min/day and SB was 737±8.1 min/day. Both higher levels of light PA and MVPA (min/day) were associated with lower left ventricular (LV) mass index (LVMI)/end-diastolic volume and a lower E/e' ratio. Higher levels of MVPA (min/day) were associated with better right ventricular systolic function. Higher levels of SB were associated with increased LVMI. In a multivariable linear regression model adjusted for demographics and cardiovascular disease modifiable factors, every 10 additional min/day of light PA was associated with a 0.03 mL/m increase in left atrial volume index (LAVI) (p<0.01) and a 0.004 cm increase in tricuspid annular plane systolic excursion (p<0.01); every 10 additional min/day of MVPA was associated with a 0.18 mL/m increase in LAVI (p<0.01) and a 0.24% improvement in global circumferential strain (p<0.01).

Conclusions: Our findings highlight the potential positive association between the MVPA and light PA on cardiac structure and function.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/openhrt-2021-001647DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8311330PMC
July 2021

Incidence, Determinants and Mortality of Heart Failure Associated With Medical-Surgical Procedures in Patients ≥ 65 Years of Age (from the Cardiovascular Health Study).

Am J Cardiol 2021 08 24;153:71-78. Epub 2021 Jun 24.

Department of Medicine (Cardiology), University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore MD, USA.

Heart failure (HF) and myocardial infarction are serious complications of major noncardiac surgery in older adults. Many factors can contribute to the development of HF during the postoperative period. The incidence of, and risk factors for, procedure-associated heart failure (PHF) occurring at the time of, or shortly after, medical procedures in a population-based sample ≥ 65 years of age have not been fully characterized, particularly in comparison with HF not proximate to medical procedures. This analysis comprises 5,121 men and women free of HF at baseline from the Cardiovascular Health Study who were followed up for 12.0 years (median). HF events were documented by self-report at semi-annual contacts and confirmed by a formal adjudication committee using a review of the participants' medical records and standardized criteria for HF. Incident HF events were additionally adjudicated as either being related or unrelated to a medical procedure (PHF and non-PHF, respectively). We estimated cause-specific hazards ratios for the association of covariates with PHF and non-PHF. There were 1,728 incident HF events in the primary analysis: 168 (10%) classified as PHF, 1,526 (88%) as non-PHF, and 34 unclassified (2%). For those 1,045 participants in whom LV ejection fraction was known at the time of the HF event, it was ≥45% in 89 of 118 participants (75%) with PHF, compared to 517 of 927 participants (55%) with non-PHF (p < 0.001). Increased age, male gender, diabetes, and angina at baseline were associated with both PHF and non-PHF (range of hazard ratios (HR): 1.04-2.05]. Being Black was inversely associated with PHF [HR: 0.46, 95% confidence interval: 0.25-0.86]. Participants with increased age, without baseline angina, and with baseline LVEF<55% were at a significantly lower risk for PHF compared to non-PHF. Among those with PHF, surgical procedures-including cardiac, orthopedic, gastrointestinal, vascular, and urologic-comprised 83.3%, while percutaneous procedures comprised 8.9% (including 6.5% represented by cardiac catheterizations and pacemaker placements). Another group composed of a variety of procedures commonly requiring large fluid volume administration comprised 7.7%. There was a lower all-cause 30-day mortality in the PHF versus the non-PHF group (2.2% vs 5.7%), with a nonsignificant odds ratio of 0.39 in a minimally adjusted model. When individuals with prior myocardial infarction (MI) were excluded in a sensitivity analysis, the proportion of incident HF with concurrent MI was greater for PHF (32.9%) than for non-PHF (19.8%). In conclusion, PHF in older adults is a common entity with relatively low 30-day mortality. Baseline angina, lower age, and LVEF ≥ 55% were associated with a higher risk of PHF compared to non-PHF. Being Black was associated with a lower risk of PHF and PHF as a proportion of HF was lower in Black than in non-Black participants. Compared to non-PHF, PHF more frequently presented with concurrent MI and with preserved LV ejection fraction.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.amjcard.2021.05.017DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8318205PMC
August 2021

Physical Activity, Subclinical Myocardial Injury, and Risk of Heart Failure Subtypes in Black Adults.

JACC Heart Fail 2021 Jul 9;9(7):484-493. Epub 2021 Jun 9.

Division of Cardiology, Department of Internal Medicine, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, Texas, USA. Electronic address:

Objectives: This study sought to evaluate the independent associations and interactions between high-sensitivity cardiac troponin I (hs-cTnI) and physical activity (PA) with risk of heart failure (HF) subtypes, HF with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF) and HF with reduced ejection fraction (HFrEF).

Background: Black adults are at high risk for developing HF. Physical inactivity and subclinical myocardial injury, as assessed by hs-cTnI concentration, are independent risk factors for HF.

Methods: Black adults from the Jackson Heart Study without prevalent HF who had hs-cTnI concentration and self-reported PA assessed at baseline were included. Adjusted Cox models were used to evaluate the independent and joint associations and interaction between hs-cTnI concentrations and PA with risk of HFpEF and HFrEF.

Results: Among 3,959 participants, 25.1% had subclinical myocardial injury (hs-cTnI ≥4 and ≥6 ng/l in women and men, respectively), and 48.2% were inactive (moderate-to-vigorous PA = 0 min/week). Over 12.0 years of follow-up, 163 and 150 participants had an incident HFpEF and HFrEF event, respectively. In adjusted analysis, higher hs-cTnI concentration (per 1-U log increase) was associated with higher risk of HFpEF (hazard ratio [HR]: 1.47; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.25 to 1.72]) and HFrEF (HR: 1.57; 95% CI: 1.35 to 1.83]). In contrast, higher PA (per 1-U log increase) was associated with a lower risk of HFpEF (HR: 0.93; 95% CI: 0.88 to 0.99]) but not HFrEF. There was a significant interaction between hs-cTnI and PA for risk of HFpEF (p interaction = 0.04) such that inactive participants with subclinical myocardial injury were at higher risk of HFpEF but active participants were not.

Conclusions: Among Black adults with subclinical myocardial injury, higher levels of PA were associated with attenuated risk of HFpEF.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jchf.2021.04.003DOI Listing
July 2021

Tobacco Use Prevalence and Transitions From 2013 to 2018 Among Adults With a History of Cardiovascular Disease.

J Am Heart Assoc 2021 06 9;10(12):e021118. Epub 2021 Jun 9.

Department of Medicine, Epidemiology and Population Health Albert Einstein College of Medicine Bronx NY.

Background Although tobacco product use and transitions have been characterized in the general population, few studies have focused on individuals with established cardiovascular disease (CVD) in a population-based sample. Methods and Results We examined tobacco use prevalence and longitudinal patterns of tobacco product transitions in adults (≥18 years) of the nationally representative PATH (Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health) study, from 2013 to 2014 (Wave 1) through 2016 to 2018 (Wave 4). Prevalent CVD was classified through self-report of having had a heart attack, heart failure, stroke, or other heart condition. Factors associated with tobacco product use and transitions were investigated using survey logistic regression. We examined 2615 participants with self-reported CVD at Wave 1. Overall, 28.9% reported current tobacco use, equating to ≈6.2 million adults in the United States with prevalent CVD and current tobacco use. Among adults with CVD who are current tobacco users, the most commonly used product was cigarettes (82.8%), followed by any type of cigar (23.7%), and e-cigarette use (23.3%). E-cigarette use without concurrent cigarette use among participants with prevalent CVD was uncommon (1.1%). Factors associated with tobacco use were younger age, male sex, had lower education level, and lack of knowledge about the association between smoking and CVD. Men with prevalent CVD were less likely to use e-cigarettes compared with women (odds ratio [OR], 0.7; 95% CI, 0.5-0.9). Among cigarette users with CVD, transition rates between Waves 1 and 4 demonstrated <5% decrease in cigarette, with a 0.5% increase in e-cigarette use. Only ≈10% were in formal tobacco cessation programs. Conclusions Despite known harmful cardiovascular effects, over one fourth of adults with prevalent CVD use tobacco products and few quit smoking over the 4 waves of the PATH data set.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/JAHA.121.021118DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8477862PMC
June 2021

Metabolically Healthy Obesity Redefined.

JAMA Netw Open 2021 May 3;4(5):e218860. Epub 2021 May 3.

Section of Cardiovascular Medicine, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2021.8860DOI Listing
May 2021

Trajectories of Blood Pressure Control a Year After Randomization and Incident Cardiovascular Outcomes in SPRINT.

Am J Hypertens 2021 09;34(9):973-980

Section of Cardiology, Department of Internal Medicine, Wake Forest School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, North Carolina, USA.

Background: While studies have assessed the association between blood pressure trajectories and cardiovascular disease (CVD) outcomes using observational data, few have assessed these associations using clinical trial data. We sought to identify systolic blood pressure (SBP) trajectories and to determine if these trajectory patterns carry inherent CVD risk, irrespective of baseline blood pressure.

Methods: SBP trajectories were identified using latent class group-based modeling among a cohort of Systolic Blood Pressure Intervention Trial (SPRINT) participants by incorporating SBP measures during the first 12 months of the trial postrandomization. Cox models were used to evaluate the association between SBP trajectory with CVD and all-cause mortality.

Results: Four distinct SBP trajectories were identified: "low decline" (41%), "high decline" (6%), "low stable" (48%), and "high stable" (5%). Relative to the "low decline" group, the "low stable" group was associated with a 29% increased risk of CVD (hazard ratio [HR]: 1.29, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.06-1.57) and the "high stable" group was associated with a 76% increased risk of all-cause mortality (HR: 1.76, 95% CI: 1.15-2.68). Relative to the "low stable" group, the "high stable" group was associated with a 54% increased risk of all-cause mortality (HR: 1.54, 95% CI: 1.05-2.28).

Conclusions: Our results demonstrate that SBP trajectory patterns are associated with important cardiovascular outcomes, irrespective of baseline blood pressure, which may help better identify individuals at risk and assist with accurate adjudication of antihypertensive therapy to reduce future events.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ajh/hpab059DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8457432PMC
September 2021

Development and Validation of Machine Learning-Based Race-Specific Models to Predict 10-Year Risk of Heart Failure: A Multicohort Analysis.

Circulation 2021 Jun 13;143(24):2370-2383. Epub 2021 Apr 13.

Division of Cardiology, Department of Internal Medicine, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas (M.W.S., K.V.P., A.C., C.A., S.R., J.A.d.L., A.P.).

Background: Heart failure (HF) risk and the underlying risk factors vary by race. Traditional models for HF risk prediction treat race as a covariate in risk prediction and do not account for significant parameters such as cardiac biomarkers. Machine learning (ML) may offer advantages over traditional modeling techniques to develop race-specific HF risk prediction models and to elucidate important contributors of HF development across races.

Methods: We performed a retrospective analysis of 4 large, community cohort studies (ARIC [Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities], DHS [Dallas Heart Study], JHS [Jackson Heart Study], and MESA [Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis]) with adjudicated HF events. The study included participants who were >40 years of age and free of HF at baseline. Race-specific ML models for HF risk prediction were developed in the JHS cohort (for Black race-specific model) and White adults from ARIC (for White race-specific model). The models included 39 candidate variables across demographic, anthropometric, medical history, laboratory, and electrocardiographic domains. The ML models were externally validated and compared with prior established traditional and non-race-specific ML models in race-specific subgroups of the pooled MESA/DHS cohort and Black participants of ARIC. The Harrell C-index and Greenwood-Nam-D'Agostino χ tests were used to assess discrimination and calibration, respectively.

Results: The ML models had excellent discrimination in the derivation cohorts for Black (n=4141 in JHS, C-index=0.88) and White (n=7858 in ARIC, C-index=0.89) participants. In the external validation cohorts, the race-specific ML model demonstrated adequate calibration and superior discrimination (Black individuals, C-index=0.80-0.83; White individuals, C-index=0.82) compared with established HF risk models or with non-race-specific ML models derived with race included as a covariate. Among the risk factors, natriuretic peptide levels were the most important predictor of HF risk across both races, followed by troponin levels in Black and ECG-based Cornell voltage in White individuals. Other key predictors of HF risk among Black individuals were glycemic parameters and socioeconomic factors. In contrast, prevalent cardiovascular disease and traditional cardiovascular risk factors were stronger predictors of HF risk in White adults.

Conclusions: Race-specific and ML-based HF risk models that integrate clinical, laboratory, and biomarker data demonstrated superior performance compared with traditional HF risk and non-race-specific ML models. This approach identifies distinct race-specific contributors of HF.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.120.053134DOI Listing
June 2021

Cigarette Smoking, Incident Coronary Heart Disease, and Coronary Artery Calcification in Black Adults: The Jackson Heart Study.

J Am Heart Assoc 2021 04 23;10(7):e017320. Epub 2021 Mar 23.

Department of Medicine University of Mississippi Medical Center Jackson MS.

Background Although Black adults are more likely to die from coronary heart disease (CHD) compared with White adults, few studies have examined the relationship between cigarette smoking and CHD risk among Black adults. We evaluated the relationship between cigarette smoking, incident CHD, and coronary artery calcification in the JHS (Jackson Heart Study). Methods and Results We classified JHS participants without a history of CHD (n=4432) by self-reported baseline smoking status into current, former (smoked at least 400 cigarettes/life) or never smokers at baseline (2000-2004). We further classified current smokers by smoking intensity (number of cigarettes smoked per day [1-19 or ≥20]) and followed for incident CHD (through 2016). Hazard ratios (HR) for incident CHD for each smoking group compared with never smokers were estimated with adjusted Cox proportional hazard regression models. At baseline, there were 548 (12.4%) current, 782 (17.6%) former, and 3102 (70%) never smokers. During follow-up (median, 13.8 years), 254 participants developed CHD. After risk factor adjustment, CHD risk was significantly higher in current smokers compared with never smokers (HR, 2.11; 95% CI, 1.39-3.18); the difference between former smokers and never smokers (HR, 1.37; 95% CI, 1.0-1.90) did not achieve statistical significance. Among current smokers, we did not observe a dose-response effect for CHD risk. Additionally, in multivariable logistic regression models with a subset of our analytic cohort, current smokers had greater odds of coronary artery calcification score >0 compared with never smokers (odds ratio, 2.63; 95% CI, 1.88-3.68). Conclusions In a large prospective cohort of Black adults, current smoking was associated with a >2-fold increased risk of CHD over a median follow-up of greater than a decade.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/JAHA.120.017320DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8174312PMC
April 2021

Risk factors for abdominal surgical site infection after exploratory laparotomy among combat casualties.

J Trauma Acute Care Surg 2021 08;91(2S Suppl 2):S247-S255

From the Department of Surgery, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Walter Reed National Military Medical Center (J.D.B., P.F.W., M.J.B.), Bethesda, Maryland; Brooke Army Medical Center (D.W.S.), JBSA Fort Sam Houston, Texas; Infectious Disease Clinical Research Program, Department of Preventive Medicine and Biostatistics (D.R.T.), Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, Maryland; Henry M. Jackson Foundation for the Advancement of Military Medicine, Inc. (F.S., L.S., M.L.C.), Bethesda, Maryland; John Peter Smith Hospital (C.J.R.), Fort Worth, Texas, Bethesda, Maryland.

Background: Surgical site infections (SSIs) are well-recognized complications after exploratory laparotomy for abdominal trauma; however, little is known about SSI development after exploration for battlefield abdominal trauma. We examined SSI risk factors after exploratory laparotomy among combat casualties.

Methods: Military personnel with combat injuries sustained in Iraq and Afghanistan (June 2009 to May 2014) who underwent laparotomy and were evacuated to participating US military hospitals were included. Log-binominal regression was used to identify SSI risk factors.

Results: Of 4,304 combat casualties, 341 patients underwent a total of 1,053 laparotomies. Abdominal SSIs were diagnosed in 49 patients (14.4%): 8% with organ space SSI, 4% with deep incisional SSI, and 4% with superficial SSIs (4 patients had multiple SSIs). Patients with SSIs had more colorectal (p < 0.001), small bowel (p = 0.010), duodenum (p = 0.006), pancreas (p = 0.032), and abdominal vascular injuries (p = 0.040), as well as prolonged open abdomen (p = 0.004) and more infections diagnosed before the SSI (or final exploratory laparotomy) versus non-SSI patients (p < 0.001). Sustaining colorectal injuries (risk ratio [RR], 3.20; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.58-6.45), duodenum injuries (RR, 6.71; 95% CI, 1.73-25.58), and being diagnosed with prior infections (RR, 10.34; 95% CI, 5.05-21.10) were independently associated with any SSI development. For either organ space or deep incisional SSIs, non-intra-abdominal infections, fecal diversion, and duodenum injuries were independently associated, while being injured via an improvised explosive device was associated with reduced likelihood compared with penetrating nonblast (e.g., gunshot wounds) injuries. Non-intra-abdominal infections and hypotension were independently associated with organ space SSIs development alone, while sustaining blast injuries were associated with reduced likelihood.

Conclusion: Despite severity of injuries and the battlefield environment, the combat casualty laparotomy SSI rate is relatively low at 14%, with similar risk factors and rates reported following severe civilian trauma.

Level Of Evidence: Epidemiological, level III.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/TA.0000000000003109DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8324514PMC
August 2021

Outcomes of ST-elevation myocardial infarction by age and sex in a low-income urban community: The Montefiore STEMI Registry.

Clin Cardiol 2020 Oct 28;43(10):1100-1109. Epub 2020 Jul 28.

Cardiology Section, San Francisco Veterans Affairs Health Care System, and Department of Medicine, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, California, USA.

Objectives: To compare outcomes by age and sex in race/ethnic minorities presenting with ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI), as studies are limited.

Methods: We studied sociodemographics, management, and outcomes in 1208 STEMI patients evaluated for primary percutaneous coronary intervention between 2008 and 2014 at Montefiore Health System (Bronx, NY). A majority of patients self-identified as nonwhite, and nearly two-thirds were young (<45 years) or middle-aged (45-64 years).

Results: Risk factors varied significantly across age groups; with more women and non-Hispanic whites, hypertension, diabetes, dyslipidemia, prior cardiovascular disease, non-sinus rhythm, and collagen vascular disease in the older age group (≥65 years); and higher body mass index, smoking, cocaine use, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection and family history of heart disease in the young. Younger women had lower summary socioeconomic scores than younger men. Middle-aged women had more obesity and dysmetabolism, while men had more heavy alcohol use. There was greater disease severity with increasing age; with higher cardiac biomarkers, 3-vessel disease, cardiogenic shock, and coronary artery bypass grafting. Older patients had higher rates of death and death or readmission over 4.3 (interquartile range 2.4, 6.0) years of follow-up. Middle-aged women had higher rates of death or any readmission than men, but these differences were not significant after adjustment.

Conclusions: These findings indicate a high burden of risk factors in younger adults with STEMI from an inner-city community. Programs to target sociobehavioral factors in disadvantaged settings, including substance abuse, obesity, and risk of HIV, are necessary to more effectively address health disparities in STEMI and its adverse consequences.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/clc.23412DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7533997PMC
October 2020

Correction to: Health Literacy Within a Diverse Community-Based Cohort: The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis.

J Immigr Minor Health 2021 Aug;23(4):668

Division of Epidemiology and Community Health, University of Minnesota, 1300 S 2nd St, Suite 300, Minneapolis, MN, 55455, USA.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10903-020-01137-9DOI Listing
August 2021

Effects of Evolocumab on Low-Density Lipoprotein Cholesterol, Non-High Density Lipoprotein Cholesterol, Apolipoprotein B, and Lipoprotein(a) by Race and Ethnicity: A Meta-Analysis of Individual Participant Data From Double-Blind and Open-Label Extension Studies.

J Am Heart Assoc 2021 01 16;10(1):e016839. Epub 2020 Dec 16.

Albert Einstein College of Medicine New York NY.

Background Prevalence of cardiovascular disease risk factors and rates of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease outcomes vary across racial/ethnic groups. This analysis examined the effects of evolocumab on LDL-C (low-density lipoprotein cholesterol) levels and LDL-C goals achievement by race/ethnicity. Methods and Results Data from 15 phase 2 and 3 studies of treatment with evolocumab versus placebo or ezetimibe were pooled (n=7669). Results were analyzed by participant clinical characteristics and by self-identified race/ethnicity. Key outcomes included percent change from baseline in LDL-C, achievement of LDL-C <70 mg/dL, and LDL-C reduction of ≥50% at 12 weeks and at 1 to 5 years. Across 12-week studies, mean percent change in LDL-C from baseline in evolocumab-treated participants was -52% to -59% for White and -46% to -67% for non-White participants, across clinical characteristics groups. LDL-C <70 mg/dL was achieved in 43% to 84% and 62% to 94% and LDL-C reduction of ≥50% in 63% to 78% and 58% to 86%, respectively. In 1- to 5-year studies, mean percent change in LDL-C was -46% to -52% for White and -49% to -55% for non-White participants. LDL-C <70 mg/dL was achieved in 53% to 84% and 66% to 77%, and LDL-C reduction of ≥50% in 53% to 67% and 58% to 68%, respectively. The treatment effect on mean percent change in LDL-C differed only in participants with type 2 diabetes mellitus, with a larger reduction in Asian participants. The qualitative interaction values were nonsignificant, indicating consistent directionality of effect. Conclusions Similar reduction in LDL-C levels with evolocumab was observed across racial/ethnic groups in 12-week and 1- to 5-year studies. Among those with diabetes mellitus, Asian participants had greater LDL-C reduction.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/JAHA.120.016839DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7955505PMC
January 2021

Perceptions of electronic cigarettes among ethno-culturally diverse Latino adults in four US urban centers.

Ethn Health 2020 Nov 29:1-15. Epub 2020 Nov 29.

American Heart Association, Tobacco Regulation and Addiction Center (A-TRAC), Dallas, TX, USA.

Objective: The aim of this study was to examine perceptions including knowledge, attitudes, and beliefs about e-cigarettes among ethno-culturally diverse Latino adults living in the US, a rapidly growing minority group for which we know little about their e-cigarette perceptions.

Design: A total of 25 focus groups with Latinos ( = 180; ages 18-64 years) were conducted in 2014. E-cigarettes users and non-users were recruited via purposive sampling techniques. Participants completed brief questionnaires on sociodemographic factors and tobacco use. Focus group discussions were conducted in English and Spanish, audio-recorded, and transcribed. Data were analyzed using thematic analysis procedures.

Results: Participants were of diverse Latino backgrounds. Over one-third (35%) reported current cigarette smoking and 8% reported current e-cigarette or hookah use. Nonsmokers reported experimenting with e-cigarettes and hookah during social occasions. Participants' perceptions towards e-cigarettes were generally formed in comparison to conventional cigarettes. Perceived benefits of using e-cigarettes included their utility as a smoking cessation aid, higher social acceptability, and lower harm compared to conventional cigarettes. Negative perceptions of e-cigarettes included lower overall satisfaction compared to conventional cigarettes and high content of toxins. Socio-cultural factors (e.g. gender roles, , and ) also influenced perceptions of e-cigarette of study participants.

Conclusions: Overall, Latino adults knew relatively little about the potential health risks associated with e-cigarette use. The limited knowledge about and misinformation of e-cigarettes among this rapidly growing minority group have important public health implications. Findings may inform culturally tailored health communication campaigns, which are much needed among underserved US Latino populations in light of low effectiveness of tobacco control and regulatory efforts.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13557858.2020.1844155DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8240696PMC
November 2020

Health Literacy Within a Diverse Community-Based Cohort: The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis.

J Immigr Minor Health 2021 Aug 18;23(4):659-667. Epub 2020 Nov 18.

Division of Epidemiology and Community Health, University of Minnesota, 1300 S 2nd St, Suite 300, Minneapolis, MN, 55455, USA.

Background: Health literacy has yet to be described in a non-clinical, racially diverse, community-based cohort.

Methods: Four questions assessing health literacy were asked during annual phone encounters with Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA) participants between 2016 and 2018 (n = 3629). We used prevalence ratios (PRs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) to characterize how demographic and acculturation factors related to limited health literacy. Models adjusted for age, sex, and race/ethnicity, and race/ethnicity-stratified models were also examined.

Results: Limited health literacy was prevalent in 15.4% of the sample. Participants who were older, female, lower-income, or less acculturated were at greater risk for having limited health literacy. Chinese, Hispanic, and Black participants were more likely than White participants to have limited health literacy. Patterns were similar when stratified by race/ethnicity.

Discussion: Within MESA limited health literacy was common, particularly among Chinese and Hispanic participants, with some of the variance explained by differences in acculturation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10903-020-01123-1DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8128937PMC
August 2021

Call to Action: Structural Racism as a Fundamental Driver of Health Disparities: A Presidential Advisory From the American Heart Association.

Circulation 2020 Dec 10;142(24):e454-e468. Epub 2020 Nov 10.

Structural racism has been and remains a fundamental cause of persistent health disparities in the United States. The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic and the police killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and multiple others have been reminders that structural racism persists and restricts the opportunities for long, healthy lives of Black Americans and other historically disenfranchised groups. The American Heart Association has previously published statements addressing cardiovascular and cerebrovascular risk and disparities among racial and ethnic groups in the United States, but these statements have not adequately recognized structural racism as a fundamental cause of poor health and disparities in cardiovascular disease. This presidential advisory reviews the historical context, current state, and potential solutions to address structural racism in our country. Several principles emerge from our review: racism persists; racism is experienced; and the task of dismantling racism must belong to all of society. It cannot be accomplished by affected individuals alone. The path forward requires our commitment to transforming the conditions of historically marginalized communities, improving the quality of housing and neighborhood environments of these populations, advocating for policies that eliminate inequities in access to economic opportunities, quality education, and health care, and enhancing allyship among racial and ethnic groups. Future research on racism must be accelerated and should investigate the joint effects of multiple domains of racism (structural, interpersonal, cultural, anti-Black). The American Heart Association must look internally to correct its own shortcomings and advance antiracist policies and practices regarding science, public and professional education, and advocacy. With this advisory, the American Heart Association declares its unequivocal support of antiracist principles.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/CIR.0000000000000936DOI Listing
December 2020

Current Smoking Raises Risk of Incident Hypertension: Hispanic Community Health Study-Study of Latinos.

Am J Hypertens 2021 03;34(2):190-197

Department of Epidemiology, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA.

Background: Hypertension has been implicated as a smoking-related risk factor for cardiovascular disease but the dose-response relationship is incompletely described. Hispanics, who often have relatively light smoking exposures, have been understudied in this regard.

Methods: We used data from a 6-year follow-up study of US Hispanic adults aged 18-76 to address the dose-response linking cigarette use with incident hypertension, which was defined by measured blood pressure above 140/90 mm Hg or initiation of antihypertensive medications. Adjustment was performed for potential confounders and mediators, including urinary albumin-to-creatinine ratio which worsened over time among smokers.

Results: Current smoking was associated with incident hypertension, with a threshold effect above 5 cumulative pack-years of smoking (vs. never smokers, hazard ratio for hypertension [95% confidence interval] of 0.95 [0.67, 1.35] for 0-5 pack-years, 1.47 [1.05, 2.06] for 5-10 pack-years, 1.40 [1.00, 1.96] for 10-20 pack-years, and 1.34 [1.09, 1.66] for ≥20 pack-years, P = 0.037). In contrast to current smokers, former smokers did not appear to have increased risk of hypertension, even at the highest cumulative pack-years of past exposure.

Conclusions: The results confirm that smoking constitutes a hypertension risk factor in Hispanic adults. A relatively modest cumulative dose of smoking, above 5 pack-years of exposure, raises risk of hypertension by over 30%. The increased hypertension risk was confined to current smokers, and did not increase further with higher pack-year levels. The lack of a smoking-hypertension association in former smokers underscores the value of smoking cessation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ajh/hpaa152DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7951044PMC
March 2021

Relation of Low Normal Left Ventricular Ejection Fraction to Heart Failure Hospitalization in Blacks (From the Jackson Heart Study).

Am J Cardiol 2020 12 8;136:100-106. Epub 2020 Sep 8.

Department of Medicine, University of Mississippi Medical Center, Jackson, Mississippi.

There is no clear consensus on a lower cutoff value for normal left ventricular ejection fraction (EF) and the prognostic implications of low normal EF (LNEF) are poorly understood, particularly in Blacks. Therefore, we investigated the association of LNEF and incident heart failure (HF) in a community-based cohort of Blacks. We studied 3,669 participants (mean age 54 years, 63% women) of the Jackson Heart Study without prevalent HF or coronary heart disease (CHD). Participants were divided into three groups: (1) Reduced EF (<50%), (2) LNEF (≥50%, <55%), and (3) Normal EF (≥55%). There were 197 cases of incident HF hospitalizations over a median follow-up of 10 years (interquartile range 9.4 to 10). After adjustment for conventional risk factors and incident CHD, the LNEF group had a higher rate of incident HF hospitalization than the Normal EF group (HR 1.58, 95% CI 1.04 to 2.38, p<0.05). Furthermore, this relation remained statistically significant after additionally adjusting for LV mass index but was not significant after adjusting for LV diastolic dysfunction grade. In participants with LNEF with incident HF, 63% developed HF with reduced EF and 37% developed HF with preserved EF. In conclusion, LNEF is associated with higher risk of incident HF hospitalization in comparison with normal EF in a community-based cohort of Blacks. In those with LNEF who went on to develop HF, most cases were HF with reduced EF. These findings suggest that strategies are needed for risk stratification and management to improve outcomes in patients with LNEF.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.amjcard.2020.08.025DOI Listing
December 2020

Occupational Exposures and Cardiac Structure and Function: ECHO-SOL (Echocardiographic Study of Latinos).

J Am Heart Assoc 2020 09 26;9(17):e016122. Epub 2020 Aug 26.

Department of Medicine Albert Einstein College of Medicine Bronx NY.

Background Our objective was to determine associations of occupational exposures with cardiac structure and function in Hispanic/Latino adults. Methods and Results Employed participants were included (n=782; 52% women, mean age 52.9 years). Occupational exposures to burning wood, vehicle exhaust, solvents, pesticides, and metals at the current and longest-held job were assessed by questionnaire. Survey multivariable linear regression analyses were used to model the relationship of each self-reported exposure with echocardiographic measures of cardiac structure and function. Exposure to burning wood at the current job was associated with decreased left ventricular (LV) ejection fraction (-3.1%; standard error [SE], 1.0 [=0.002]). When the analysis was restricted to exposure at the longest-held job, occupational exposure to burning wood was associated with increased LV diastolic volume (6.7 mL; SE, 1.6 [<0.0001]), decreased LV ejection fraction (-2.7%; SE, 0.6 [<0.0001]), worse LV global longitudinal strain (1.0%; SE, 0.3 [=0.0009]), and decreased right ventricular fractional area change (-0.02; SE, 0.004 [<0.001]). Exposure to pesticides was associated with worse average global longitudinal strain (0.8%; SE, 0.2 [<0.0001]). Exposure to metals was associated with worse global longitudinal strain in the 2-chamber view (1.0%; SE, 0.5 [=0.04]), increased stroke volume (3.6 mL; SE, 1.6 [=0.03]), and increased LV mass indexed to BSA (9.2 g/m; SE, 3.8 [=0.01]) or height (4.4 g/m; SE, 1.9 [=0.02]). Conclusions Occupational exposures to burning wood, vehicle exhaust, pesticides, and metals were associated with abnormal parameters of LV and right ventricular systolic function. Reducing exposures to toxic chemicals and particulates in the workplace is a potential opportunity to prevent cardiovascular disease in populations at risk.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/JAHA.120.016122DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7660755PMC
September 2020

Pelvic Binder Utilization in Combat Casualties: Does It Matter?

Am Surg 2020 Jul 28;86(7):873-877. Epub 2020 Jul 28.

1685 Department of Surgery, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Bethesda, MD, USA.

Introduction: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the utilization of pelvic binders, the proper placement of binders, and to determine any differences in blood product transfusions between combat casualties with and without a pelvic binder identified on initial imaging immediately after the injury.

Methods: We conducted a retrospective review of all combat-injured patients who arrived at our military treatment hospital between 2010 and 2012 with a documented pelvic fracture. Initial imaging (X-ray or computed tomography) immediately after injury were evaluated by 2 independent radiologists. Young-Burgess (YB) classification, pelvic diastasis, correct binder placement over the greater trochanters, and the presence of a pelvic external fixator (ex-fix) was recorded. Injury severity score (ISS), whole blood, and blood component therapy administered within the first 24-hours after injury were compared between casualties with and without a pelvic binder.

Results: 39 casualties had overseas imaging to confirm and radiographically classify a YB pelvic ring injury. The most common fracture patterns were anteroposterior (53%) and lateral compression (28%). 49% (19/39) did not have a binder or ex-fix identified on initial imaging or in any documentation after injury. Ten patients had a binder, with 30% positioned incorrectly over the iliac crest. ISS (34 ± 1.6) was not statistically different between the binder and the no-binder group. Pubic symphysis diastasis was significantly lower in the binder group (1.4 ± 0.2 vs 3.7 ± 0.5, < .001). There was a trend toward decreased 24-hour total blood products between the binder and no-binder groups (75 ± 11 vs 82 ± 13, = .67). This was due to less cryoprecipitate in the binder group (6 ± 2 vs 19 ± 5, = .01).

Conclusions: Pelvic binder placement in combat trauma may be inconsistent and an important area for continued training. While 24-hour total transfusions do not appear to be different, no-binder patients received significantly more cryoprecipitate.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0003134820939928DOI Listing
July 2020

Syndemic burden and systemic inflammation, HIV health status, and blood pressure among women with unsuppressed HIV viral loads among women living with HIV.

AIDS 2020 11;34(13):1959-1963

SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University, New York, New York, USA.

Introduction: Smoking, low education, obesity, and depressive symptoms are all associated with HIV health status, increased blood pressure, and inflammation, and constitute a syndemic burden that may contribute to poor health outcomes. The current study examined syndemic burden and health outcomes among women living with HIV.

Methods: Women were participants enrolled in the Women's Interagency HIV Study. Outcomes included blood pressure, HIV health status (HIV-1 RNA viral load and CD4 T-cell counts), and IL-6. Syndemic burden was defined as a count variable of low education, obesity, cigarette use, and depressive symptoms.

Results: Women (N = 131) were an average of 60.54 years of age (SD = 8.86), and 49% were non-Hispanic Black. In multivariable analyses, syndemic burden was not significantly associated with SBP (P = 0.342) or DBP (P = 0.763), IL-6 (P = 0.168), or CD4 cell count (P = 0.846). However, syndemic burden was associated with increased viral load (age adjusted β = 0.35, P < 0.001). Comparing women with high versus low syndemic burden, also controlling for women's age, women with high syndemic burden had higher DBP and HIV viral load.

Discussion: Syndemic burden appeared to play an important role in HIV health status and could potentially increase the risk of HIV transmission. High syndemic burden, defined as at least two syndemic conditions, had the greatest effects of HIV viral load and DBP. Targeted interventions to address syndemic burden may help improve health outcomes in women living with HIV as well as reduce the risk of hypertension and HIV transmission.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/QAD.0000000000002617DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7541665PMC
November 2020

Combat trauma-related invasive fungal wound infections.

Curr Fungal Infect Rep 2020 Jun 16;14(2):186-196. Epub 2020 Apr 16.

John Peter Smith Hospital, 1500 S Main Street, Fort Worth, TX 76104.

Purpose Of Review: This review highlights research from the past five years on combat trauma-related invasive fungal wound infections (IFIs) with a focus on risk stratification to aid patient management, microbiology, and diagnostics.

Recent Findings: A revised classification scheme stratifies wounds into three risk groups: IFI, High Suspicion of IFI, and Low Suspicion of IFI. This stratification is based on persistence of wound necrosis and laboratory fungal evidence, presence of signs/symptoms of deep soft-tissue infections, and the need for antifungals. Use of this classification could allow for prioritization of antifungal therapy. Further, IFIs delay wound healing, particularly when caused by fungi of the order Mucorales. Lastly, molecular sequencing offers promising and complimentary results to the gold standard histopathology.

Summary: Optimal management of combat-related IFIs depends on early tissue-based diagnosis with aggressive surgical debridement and concomitant dual antifungal therapy. Further research on clinical decision support tools and rapid diagnostics are needed.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12281-020-00385-4DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7360332PMC
June 2020

Outcomes of tranexamic acid administration in military trauma patients with intracranial hemorrhage: a cohort study.

BMC Emerg Med 2020 05 14;20(1):39. Epub 2020 May 14.

Department of Surgery, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences and Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, 8901 Rockville Pike, Bethesda, MD, 20889, USA.

Background: Tranexamic acid (TXA) may be a useful adjunct for military patients with severe traumatic brain injury (TBI). These patients are often treated in austere settings without immediate access to neurosurgical intervention. The purpose of this study was to evaluate any association between TXA use and progression of intracranial hemorrhage (ICH), neurologic outcomes, and venous thromboembolism (VTE) in TBI.

Methods: This was a retrospective cohort study of military casualties from October 2010 to December 2015 who were transferred to a military treatment facility (MTF) in the United States. Data collected included: demographics, types of injuries, initial and interval head computerized tomography (CT) scans, Glasgow Coma Scores (GCS), and six-month Glasgow Outcome Scores (GOS). Results were stratified based on TXA administration, progression of ICH, and VTE.

Results: Of the 687 active duty service members reviewed, 71 patients had ICH (10.3%). Most casualties were injured in a blast (80.3%), with 36 patients (50.7%) sustaining a penetrating TBI. Mean ISS was 28.2 ± 12.3. Nine patients (12.7%) received a massive transfusion within 24 h of injury, and TXA was administered to 14 (19.7%) casualties. Patients that received TXA had lower initial reported GCS (9.2 ± 4.4 vs. 12.5 ± 3.4, p = 0.003), similar discharge GCS (13.3 ± 4.0 vs. 13.8 ± 3.2, p = 0.58), and a larger improvement between initial and discharge GCS (3.7 ± 3.9 vs. 1.3 ± 3.1, p = 0.02). However, there was no difference in mortality (7.1% vs. 7.0%, p = 1.00), progression of ICH (45.5% vs. 14.7%, p = 0.09), frequency of cranial decompression (50.0% vs. 42.1%, p = 0.76), or mean GOS (3.5 ± 0.9 vs. 3.8 ± 1.0, p = 0.13). Patients administered TXA had a higher rate of VTE (35.7% vs. 7.0%, p = 0.01). On multivariate analysis, however, TXA was not independently associated with VTE.

Conclusions: Patients that received TXA were associated with an improvement in GCS but not in progression of ICH or GOS. TXA was not independently associated with VTE, although this may be related to a paucity of patients receiving TXA. Decisions about TXA administration in military casualties with ICH should be considered in the context of the availability of neurosurgical intervention as well as severity of extracranial injuries and need for massive transfusion.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12873-020-00335-wDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7222426PMC
May 2020

Association Between Sleep Disordered Breathing and Left Ventricular Function: A Cross-Sectional Analysis of the ECHO-SOL Ancillary Study.

Circ Cardiovasc Imaging 2020 05 15;13(5):e009074. Epub 2020 May 15.

Departments of Medicine and Epidemiology & Population Health, Albert Einstein College of Medicine (C.J.R.).

Background: Prior studies have found that sleep-disordered breathing (SDB) is common among those with left ventricular (LV) dysfunction and heart failure. Few epidemiological studies have examined this association, especially in US Hispanic/Latinos, who may be at elevated risk of SDB and heart failure.

Methods: We examined associations between SDB and LV diastolic and systolic function using data from 1506 adults aged 18 to 64 years in the Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos ECHO-SOL Ancillary Study (2011-2014). Home sleep testing was used to measure the apnea-hypopnea index, a measure of SDB severity. Echocardiography was performed a median of 2.1 years later to quantify LV diastolic function, systolic function, and structure. Multivariable linear regression was used to model the association between apnea-hypopnea index and echocardiographic measures while accounting for the complex survey design, demographics, body mass, and time between sleep and echocardiographic measurements.

Results: Each 10-unit increase in apnea-hypopnea index was associated with 0.2 (95% CI, 0.1-0.3) lower E', 0.3 (0.1-0.5) greater E/E' ratio, and 1.07-fold (1.03-1.11) higher prevalence of diastolic dysfunction as well as 1.3 (0.3-2.4) g/m greater LV mass index. These associations persisted after adjustment for hypertension and diabetes mellitus. In contrast, no association was identified between SDB severity and subclinical markers of LV systolic function.

Conclusions: Greater SDB severity was associated with LV hypertrophy and subclinical markers of LV diastolic dysfunction. These findings suggest SDB in Hispanic/Latino men and women may contribute to the burden of heart failure in this population.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/CIRCIMAGING.119.009074DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8117672PMC
May 2020

Effect of Intensive Blood Pressure Lowering on the Risk of Atrial Fibrillation.

Hypertension 2020 06 4;75(6):1491-1496. Epub 2020 May 4.

Department of Epidemiology, and Department of Medicine (C.E.L.), University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, AL.

It remains uncertain whether intensive control of blood pressure (BP) results in a lower risk of atrial fibrillation (AF) in patients with hypertension. Using data from SPRINT (Systolic Blood Pressure Intervention Trial), which enrolled participants with hypertension at increased risk of cardiovascular disease, we examined whether intensive BP lowering (target systolic BP [SBP] <120 mm Hg), compared with standard BP lowering (target SBP<140 mm Hg), results in a lower risk of AF. This analysis included 8022 participants (4003 randomized to the intensive arm and 4019 to standard BP arm) who were free of AF at the time of enrollment and with available baseline and follow-up electrocardiographic data. AF was ascertained from standard 12-lead electrocardiograms recorded at biannual study examinations and an exit visit. During up to 5.2 years of follow-up and a total of 28 322 person-years, 206 incident AF cases occurred; 88 in the intensive BP-lowering arm and 118 in the standard BP-lowering arm. Intensive BP lowering was associated with a 26% lower risk of developing new AF (hazard ratio, 0.74 [95% CI, 0.56-0.98]; =0.037). This effect was consistent among prespecified subgroups of SPRINT participants stratified by age, sex, race, SBP tertiles, prior cardiovascular disease, and prior chronic kidney disease when interactions between treatment effect and these subgroups were assessed using Hommel adjusted values. In conclusion, intensive treatment to a target of SBP <120 mm Hg in patients with hypertension at high risk of cardiovascular disease has the potential to reduce the risk of AF. Registration- URL: https://www.clinicaltrials.gov; Unique identifier: NCT01206062.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.120.14766DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7225060PMC
June 2020

Comparison of Outcomes Between the National Surgical Quality Improvement Program and an Emergency General Surgery Registry.

J Healthc Qual 2021 Mar-Apr 01;43(2):76-81

Background: The National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (NSQIP) has become a prevalent tool for quality improvement. At our tertiary military hospital, NSQIP collects 20% of eligible cases. We implemented an emergency general surgery (EGS) registry to prospectively review all EGS cases. We compared our EGS registry with NSQIP, hypothesizing that NSQIP sampling under-represents EGS outcomes.

Methods: A formal EGS Process Improvement Program was implemented in 2016. From 2016 to 2018, the four most common operations were laparoscopic appendectomy, laparoscopic cholecystectomy, surgery for small bowel obstruction, and nonelective hernia repair. Outcomes were compared between the EGS registry and NSQIP abstracted cases.

Results: In 2016, the EGS registry identified 11/112 (9.8%) patients with a complication. National Surgical Quality Improvement Program abstracted 16% of EGS cases with 16.7% (3/18) of patients having a complication. In 2017, the EGS registry identified 10/87 (11.5%) cases with complications. National Surgical Quality Improvement Program abstracted 23% of EGS with zero complications. In 2018, the EGS registry identified 9.5% of 74 cases with complications. National Surgical Quality Improvement Program abstracted 15% of EGS cases with zero complications.

Conclusions: National Surgical Quality Improvement Program did not capture many important EGS outcomes. In 2 of 3 years, NSQIP did not identify a single complication for EGS. National Surgical Quality Improvement Program alone may be insufficient to target EGS improvements.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/JHQ.0000000000000262DOI Listing
August 2021

Advancing Healthcare Reform: The American Heart Association's 2020 Statement of Principles for Adequate, Accessible, and Affordable Health Care: A Presidential Advisory From the American Heart Association.

Circulation 2020 03 3;141(10):e601-e614. Epub 2020 Feb 3.

The mission of the American Heart Association is to be a relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives. The American Heart Association has consistently prioritized the needs and perspective of the patient in taking positions on healthcare reform while recognizing the importance of biomedical research, providers, and healthcare delivery systems in advancing the care of patients and the prevention of disease. The American Heart Association's vision for healthcare reform describes the foundational changes needed for the health system to serve the best interests of patients and to achieve health care and coverage that are adequate, accessible, and affordable for everyone living in the United States. The American Heart Association is committed to advancing the dialogue around healthcare reform and has prepared this updated statement of our principles, placed in the context of the advances in coverage and care that have occurred after the passage of the Affordable Care Act, the rapidly changing landscape of healthcare delivery systems, and our evolving recognition that efforts to prevent cardiovascular disease can have synergistic benefit in preventing other diseases and improving overall well-being. These updated principles focus on expanding access to affordable health care and coverage; enhancing the availability of evidence-based preventive services; eliminating disparities that limit the availability and equitable delivery of health care; strengthening the public health infrastructure to respond to social determinants of health; prioritizing and accelerating investments in biomedical research; and growing a diverse, culturally competent health and healthcare workforce prepared to meet the challenges of delivering high-value health care.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/CIR.0000000000000759DOI Listing
March 2020

Trauma Embolic Scoring System in military trauma: a sensitive predictor of venous thromboembolism.

Trauma Surg Acute Care Open 2019 15;4(1):e000367. Epub 2019 Dec 15.

Surgery, Penn State Health Milton S Hershey Medical Center, Hershey, Pennsylvania, USA.

Introduction: Clinical decision support tools capable of predicting which patients are at highest risk for venous thromboembolism (VTE) can assist in guiding surveillance and prophylaxis decisions. The Trauma Embolic Scoring System (TESS) has been shown to model VTE risk in civilian trauma patients. No such support tools have yet been described in combat casualties, who have a high incidence of VTE. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the utility of TESS in predicting VTE in military trauma patients.

Methods: A retrospective cohort study of 549 combat casualties from October 2010 to November 2012 admitted to a military treatment facility in the USA was performed. TESS scores were calculated through data obtained from the Department of Defense Trauma Registry and chart reviews. Univariate analysis and multivariate logistic regression were performed to evaluate risk factors for VTE. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve analysis of TESS in military trauma patients was also performed.

Results: The incidence of VTE was 21.7% (119/549). The median TESS for patients without VTE was 8 (IQR 4-9), and the median TESS for those with VTE was 10 (IQR 9-11). On multivariate analysis, Injury Severity Score (ISS) (OR 1.03, p=0.007), ventilator days (OR 1.05, p=0.02), and administration of tranexamic acid (TXA) (OR 1.89, p=0.03) were found to be independent risk factors for development of VTE. On ROC analysis, an optimal high-risk cut-off value for TESS was ≥7 with a sensitivity of 0.92 and a specificity of 0.53 (area under the curve 0.76, 95% CI 0.72 to 0.80, p<0.0001).

Conclusions: When used to predict VTE in military trauma, TESS shows moderate discrimination and is well calibrated. An optimal high-risk cut-off value of ≥7 demonstrates high sensitivity in predicting VTE. In addition to ISS and ventilator days, TXA administration is an independent risk factor for VTE development.

Level Of Evidence: Level III.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/tsaco-2019-000367DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6924724PMC
December 2019
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