Cedars-Sinai March medical tipsheet

March 04, 2004

HEART ATTACK 1-2-3's: WHAT TO DO DURING A HEART ATTACK
It's no secret that heart disease is the number one killer of both men and women in America. Yet, when a heart attack strikes, most people don't know what to do, resulting in the loss of vitally important time - time during which the heart becomes increasingly damaged. According to Prediman K. Shah, MD., Director of the Division of Cardiology and the Atherosclerosis Research Center at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, it's important to not only recognize the signs of a heart attack, but also to know what to do and to act quickly. "Getting immediate, appropriate care is the single most important thing you can do to help lessen the damage of a heart attack," he says.

HEART ATTACK ABC's: HOW TO RECOGNIZE A HEART ATTACK
While most people know that heart disease is the number one killer of both men and women in America, many don't know how to recognize the signs of a heart attack. Beyond that, many are unaware that the symptoms in a woman can be quite different from those in a man. Prediman K. Shah, M.D. Director of the Division of Cardiology at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, offers tips for recognizing a heart attack.

LARGE-SCALE ANALYSIS OF WOMEN WITH ANDROGEN EXCESS: THOROUGH TREATMENT CAN REDUCE SYMPTOMS
Although they are considered "male" hormones, certain levels of androgens normally circulate in the bloodstreams of women as well as men. But when women's bodies produce excessive amounts of androgens, symptoms can range from annoying to serious. Researchers at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center and the University of Alabama at Birmingham, completing what may be the largest long-term study of women with androgen excess, find that some of the most problematic symptoms can be reduced when treated with a combination of therapies.

SPECIALISTS: LAPAROSCOPY CAN HELP INFERTILE WOMEN AVOID MONTHS OF UNNECESSARY TREATMENTS
Some physicians have suggested that an X-ray image of the fallopian tubes is a sufficient diagnostic tool when a woman with irregular or absent ovulation fails to become pregnant after a trial of fertility pills (clomiphene citrate). If the tubes appear to be open, patients may then undergo more months of hormonal therapy, followed by in vitro fertilization if pregnancy still is not achieved. But new research indicates that many women with infertility due to ovulation problems who do not become pregnant after using the fertility pill clomiphene citrate should undergo a laparoscopy prior to further treatment. Laparoscopic evaluation provides much better images, is far more useful in identifying anatomical abnormalities, and can enable many patients to avoid the cost and frustration of months of unneeded treatment.

RECREATIONAL HAZARDS TO YOUR CHILD'S HEALTH: TIPS TO HELP YOUR KIDS PLAY IT SAFE
While it's no secret that children often get more than their fair share of cuts and bruises growing up, many parents don't know that certain play activities carry greater risks for injuries that can have long-term effects on their child's health and development. According to a pediatric orthopedic surgeon at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, injuries that can cause serious harm to children occur from falls and crashes while jumping on trampolines, bicycling, participating in roller sports such as rollerblading and/or scooter riding, and from accidents that occur on the playground.

CEDARS-SINAI RESEARCHERS IDENTIFY A GENE THAT CAUSES INSULIN RESISTANCE IN MEXICAN AMERICANS - A CONDITION LINKED TO HEART DISEASE, DIABETES, HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE AND OBESITY
For over a decade, scientists have known that insulin resistance - a syndrome where the body does not respond as well as it should to insulin - is linked to the development of heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity and polycystic ovary syndrome. In fact, one in four adult Americans has insulin resistance, with Mexican Americans having the highest prevalence. But because people with insulin resistance are so likely to develop diseases such as diabetes and heart disease, scientists have turned their attention on investigating whether a common gene abnormality may be involved.

CEDARS-SINAI PSYCHIATRIST AND DIRECTOR OF ADDICTION MEDICINE OFFERS TIPS ON HOW TO HAVE FUN WHILE STAYING SAFE DURING SPRING BREAK
For decades, spring break has been a time for college kids to escape the rigors of academic life by heading to the beaches for sun, fun, parties, and flirting. But over the years, the week-long break has turned into an event for students to engage in excessive drinking, that for some has led to accidents, violence, vandalism, sexual aggression and even death.

HIS-N-HERS HEART TRANSPLANTS: HUSBAND AND WIFE EACH HAVE HEART TRANSPLANTS, PERFORMED BY THE SAME SURGEON AND CARDIOLOGIST
What are the odds that a husband and wife would both need heart transplants, and that the same cardiologist and transplant surgeon would perform each of their procedures - six years apart? An Orange County (CA) couple, believed to be one of the only such couples in the nation, have both successfully undergone heart transplants at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center.

PATIENT SIMULATOR "SIMMAN" IS STATE-OF-THE-ART STAR IN TRAINING PROGRAMS AT CEDARS-SINAI MEDICAL CENTER
Tall, dark and handsome he's not, but SimMan has just about everything else going for him. At 5-foot-5 and 75 pounds, the Laerdal SimMan - a patient simulator used for training at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center - can breathe and speaks in any language. He has a pulse, blood pressure, respirations, bowel sounds, skin and veins, even interchangeable genitalia. Students and staff can practice skills with no risk to the patient.
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Cedars-Sinai Medical Center

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