Author Interviews, CT Scanning, Heart Disease, JAMA, Women's Heart Health / 16.11.2016 Interview with: Maryam Kavousi MD, PhD, FESC Assistant Professor Department of Epidemiology Erasmus University Medical Center Rotterdam The Netherlands What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: The most recent American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association (ACC/AHA) cardiovascular disease (CVD) prevention guidelines recommend statins for a larger proportion of populations. Notably, a large group of women are categorized as low CVD risk by the guidelines and would therefore not typically qualify for intensive management of their standard risk factors. Coronary artery calcium (CAC) scanning allows for the detection of subclinical coronary atherosclerosis and is viewed as the vessel’s memory of lifetime exposure to risk factors. We therefore aimed to address the utility of CAC as a potential tool for refining CVD risk assessment in asymptomatic women at low CVD risk based on the new guidelines. This study involved data on 6,739 low-risk women from 5 population-based cohort studies across the United States and Europe. We found that CAC was present in 36% of low-risk women and was associated with increased risk of CVD. (more…)
Heart Disease, JACC / 16.04.2014

Rine Nakanishi, MD, PhD Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute Interview with: Rine Nakanishi, MD, PhD Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Nakanishi: With growing evidence that a measurement of the buildup of calcium in coronary arteries can predict heart disease risk, Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute (LA BioMed) researchers found that the process of "calcium scoring" was also accurate in predicting the chances of dying among adults with little or no traditional risk factor of heart disease. The study conducted by LA BioMed researchers examined 5,593 adults with no known heart disease and zero or minimal risk factor of heart disease -- including hypertension, dyslipidemia, diabetes, current smoking and family history of heart disease -- who had undergone coronary artery calcium screening by non-contrast cardiac computed tomography from 1991-2011. Among the adults in the study, even those with low coronary artery calcium scores of 1-99 were 50% more likely to die of heart disease than adults with a calcium score of zero. Adults with moderate scores of 100-399 were 80% more likely to die from heart disease than those with a score of zero, and those with scores of 400 or more were three times more likely to die from heart disease, when compared to adults with no calcified plaque buildup, or a score of zero. (more…)