Tag Archive | "heart attack"

Smoking during Pregnancy Increases Children’s Risk of Heart Problems

A recent study suggests that children whose mothers smoked during pregnancy have lower high-density lipoprotein (HDL) levels, also known as the “good” cholesterol. This raises children’s risk of suffering from heart attack and stroke later in their life.

The study, which was carried out by Australian researchers, has 405 participants at the age of 8 and in good physical shape. The researchers discovered that those children whose mothers smoked during pregnancy had good cholesterol levels of about 1.3mmol/L, which is below the normal level of 1.5mmol/L observed in children born to non-smoking mothers.

David Celermajer, a cardiology professor at the University of Sydney and lead author of the study, said in a journal news release that the results of the study suggest that smoking during pregnancy marks a set of unhealthy characteristics on children while they are still developing in the mother’s womb. He said the characteristics last for a minimum of eight years and longer.

Published in the European Heart Journal on June 21, the study reports that the result was independent of whether the kids were exposed to cigarette smoke after birth. It suggested that prenatal exposure still had the greatest impact on subsequent effect.

Celermajer and his colleagues noted that the rates of maternal smoking are still high. In most Western Nations, there are about 15 percent smoking pregnant women. This means the results of their study could be beneficial in the efforts to prevent heart problems.

Children whose mothers have smoked during pregnancy should be observed carefully for other heart risk factors such as high blood pressure, smoking and high levels of LDL or “bad” type of cholesterol, Celermajer said.

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Charlie Sheen Honors a Man’s Ashes Onstage

Charlie Sheen, now known for his beyond bizarre antics during his tour shows, capped his first stop in Canada by leading a toast for a dead man’s ashes. The ashes belong to the one of the audience members’ dead husband.

The show is called “The Violent Torpedo of Truth”, and an hour in to the show Sheen called out a woman from the audience whose husband died many years ago. He also said that he learned about her story from a newspaper article.

The audience went pitch quiet when Wendy Newman clothed in black from head to toe with an urn on one arm. Newman told everyone that her husband had a heart attack and the only thing that kept her going after her husband’s death is “Three and a Half Men” – Sheen’s former sitcom.

When Newman heard that Sheen is taking his show to Toronto, she immediately booked a flight and left a message on the actor’s facebook wall asking him if she can bring her husband’s ashes. She also asked that Sheen leads a toast to honor her husband.

Sheen gracefully agreed, led a toast with a non-alcoholic beverage – the actor vowed to shy away from drinking and drugs – and allowed the widow to say a short eulogy. Mrs. Newman ended her eulogy by saying she can finally properly send off her husband since Charlie Sheen is in their midst.

After the speech, the show abruptly ended; much to the dismay of the rest of the audience. Although it was moving, a 25-year old member of the audience could not help but say – “What the hell!”

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Swiss Study Reveals Exposure to Too Much Aircraft Noise Could Increase the Risk of Heart Attack

Researchers found that among 4.6 million adults living in Switzerland, heart attacks are more common among people who are exposed to too much aircraft noise. People living under flight routes are the most predisposed.

According to Matthias Egger, researcher from the University of Bern, the case was much more evident among people who were exposed to increased levels of noise, but it was dependent on for how long those people were exposed to such noise.

Although this is not the first time that noise pollution was linked to undesirable health effects, the study helped determine that the noise is the major cause of the cardiovascular risks and not just other factors that might affect the people such as air pollution.

The researchers identified 15,532 heart attack deaths between late 2000 and end of 2005 among 4.6 million residents. Using this information from the ongoing Swiss mortality study, as well as the government records and environmental data, Egger and his colleagues identified that both the duration and level of aircraft noise affect the people most.

In their written report in journal Epidemiology, the researchers said that people who are exposed at a minimum of 60 decibels of noise at a daily rate are at 30 percent greater risk to die from heart attack than those who are exposed to less than 45 decibels.

On the other hand, people exposed to increased levels of decibels for at least 15 years and more puts up their risk to more than 50 percent.

Egger said that noise does possibly have effects on health and their group recommends further measures to protect the people from such aircraft noise such as sound barriers and better home insulation.

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