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Work stress may lead to irregular heart rate

Raghu Kshitiz

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Too much job pressure may increase your risk developing a rapid and irregular heart rate, called atrial fibrillation, which can lead to a stroke, dementia, heart failure and other complications, according to a study published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology.

The study, which included 13,200 participants enrolled into the Swedish Longitudinal Occupational Survey of Health (SLOSH) in 2006, 2008, or 2010, found that being stressed at work was associated with a 48 per cent higher risk of atrial fibrillation.

“Work stress has previously been linked with coronary heart disease. Work stress should be considered a modifiable risk factor for preventing atrial fibrillation and coronary heart disease,” said study author Eleonor Fransson from Jonkoping University in Sweden.

For the study, the team defined work stress as job strain, which refers to jobs with high psychological demands combined with low control over the work situation. Participants were employed and had no history of atrial fibrillation, heart attack, or heart failure.

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“People who feel stressed at work and have palpitations or other symptoms of atrial fibrillation should see their doctor and speak to their employer about improving the situation at work,” she explained.

They also completed postal surveys on sociodemographics, lifestyle, health, and work-related factors which included questions on job demands and control.

After a median follow-up of 5.7 years, the researchers identified that work stress was a risk factor for atrial fibrillation.

“Atrial fibrillation is a common condition with serious consequences and therefore it is of major public health importance to find ways of preventing it,” Fransson explained.

The symptoms of atrial fibrillation, according to the authors, may include palpitations, weakness, fatigue, feeling light-headed, dizziness, and shortness of breath.

With IANS inputs

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Single blood test might be enough to diagnose diabetes

Gorkha Post

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A new study report has suggested that it may be possible to diagnose type 2 diabetes by measuring fasting blood glucose and hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) using the same blood sample without requiring a patient to come back for a second visit and saving patients time and health care cost.

The findings, from the prospective Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities (ARIC) study, were published online June 19 in Annals of Internal Medicine by Elizabeth Selvin, PhD, of Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland, and colleagues.

Until now, it’s recommended that a blood test focused on elevated fasting levels of blood sugar (glucose) or a blood component called glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) be confirmed with a second blood test at a follow-up visit which takes time and money and could still result in missed diagnoses, said a team from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore.

In the new study, researchers led by Hopkins epidemiologist Elizabeth Selvin looked at data on more than 13,000 people in a long-running US heart disease study. The study began in the 1980s, and along the way has recorded valuable data from participants, including diabetes test data.

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The team analyzed that data, and reported that a positive result for glucose and HbA1c from just a single blood sample can confirm type 2 diabetes.

” This could change care potentially allowing a major simplification of current clinical practice guidelines,” Selvin said in a university news release.

“Doctors are already doing these [glucose and HbA1c] tests together — if a patient is obese, for example, and has other risk factors for diabetes, the physician is likely to order tests for both glucose and HbA1c from a single blood sample.

“It’s just that the guidelines don’t clearly let you use the tests from that one blood sample to make the initial diabetes diagnosis,” she explained.

“I’m hoping that these results will lead to a change in the clinical guidelines when they are revised in early 2019, which could make identifying diabetes a lot more efficient in many cases,” Selvin said.

Diabetes experts welcomed the findings.

With Agency Inputs

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