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Depression, anxiety can spike heart failure risk

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WASHINGTON — Experts from across the globe have said that there is a Pathophysiological relationship between heart failure and depression and anxiety.

According to the latest study by Harvard Review of Psychiatry, about one-third of people who have fallen into traps of depression and anxiety are at higher risk of progressive heart diseases.

Christopher Celano, MD, of Massachusetts General Hospital and colleagues were of the view that both anxiety and depression remain under-recognized and untreated in patients suffering from heart failure or cardiac attack.

He further said that at times, it becomes challenging for medical practitioners to identify the symptoms of heart failure as there is a significant overlap between psychiatric symptoms and those related to heart failure.

“Making the effort can help to identify those who are at higher risk for poor cardiac outcomes and to implement the treatment of these disorders,” Celano said.

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The victims of heart failure suffering from depression and anxiety also find it difficult to follow the recommended diet, exercise routine, and medication use. Studies have also linked depression to metabolic changes, including increased levels of inflammatory markers.

While conducting the study, the researchers found that one-third of people having heart failure have elevated symptoms of depression on standard questionnaires, while nineteen percent meet diagnostic criteria for major depression or other depressive disorders.

The study also revealed that even a healthy person suffering from mild depression is also likely to develop heart failure.

Notably, these researchers have raised the need for further research on effective treatments for the large group of people suffering from heart failure accompanied by depression and anxiety.

Celano and co-authors conclude, “It is likely that an aggressive, multimodal treatment approach – such as collaborative care models or stepped care from a mental health professional — will be needed to improve psychiatric and cardiac health in this high-risk population.”

The study appeared in the journal Harvard Review of Psychiatry.

ANI

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Diabetes drug might ease heart failure risk

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A new research has showed that the diabetes drug Farxiga might do double-duty for patients, helping to ward off another killer, heart failure.

According to the findings were published in the New England Journal of Medicine to coincide with their presentation at the annual meeting of the American Heart Association in Chicago, Type 2 diabetics who took Farxiga saw their odds of hospitalization for heart failure drop by 27 percent compared to those who took a placebo.

Farxiga is a type of drug called a SGLT2 inhibitor. The compound is called dapagliflozin.

The study included more than 17,000 type 2 diabetes patients aged 40 and older. Nearly 7,000 had heart disease and more than 10,000 had numerous risk factors for heart disease, Wiviott’s group said.

Patients were randomly assigned to take a dummy placebo pill or 10 milligrams of Farxiga each day.

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“When it comes to helping our patients control and manage blood glucose, the ‘how’ appears to be as important [as] the ‘how much,” said study author Dr Stephen Wiviott, a cardiovascular medicine specialist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston.

“When choosing a therapy, trial results like these can help us make an informed decision about what treatments are not only safe and effective for lowering blood glucose but can also reduce risk of heart and kidney complications,” Wiviott said in a hospital news release.

Taking the drug did not reduce the risk of heart attack, stroke and cardiovascular-related death, the research team noted. However, patients who took the drug did see healthy declines in their blood sugar levels, plus an added bonus: a 27 percent decrease in their risk of hospitalization for heart failure.

Their risk of kidney failure and death from kidney failure also fell, researchers noted.

Two other recent studies of this class of drugs show that they “robustly and consistently improve heart and kidney outcomes in a broad population of patients with diabetes,” Wiviott noted.

With Inputs from HealthDay

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