Better management improves survival rates of heart attack victims
Reported January 29, 2009
Sydney (IANS): Better management practices have improved survival rates of heart attack victims, according to a study based on nearly 4,500 such cases.
Researchers followed the outcomes for 12 years of 4,451 patients hospitalised during 1984-87, 1988-90 and 1991-93. Changes in the management of these patients probably continuously cut down mortality from coronary heart disease.
The study was co-authored by research fellow Tom Briffa of The University of Western Australia’s (UWA) School of Population Health.
The use of proven medical treatment, such as B-blockers and revascularisation surgery within 12 months of hospital admission accounted for the greatest improvement of survival over 12 years, the authors claimed.
Only patients who survived 28 days after a heart attack were included in the long-term, Perth-based study. Participants were aged from 35 to 64. Overall, 18 percent were women, 10 percent had a history of diabetes, 51 percent were current smokers, and 40 percent had a history of high blood pressure, according to an UWA release.
“Improvements in long-term survival are probably attributable to a combination of various treatments rather than any single treatment. Changes in lifestyle characteristics and dietary practices might also have contributed to trends in survival,” said Briffa.
Source : British Medical Journal.