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Wearable Biosensors Can Tell You When To See the Doctor
Your watch might be able to tell you it’s time to call in sick. Researchers supported by the National Institutes of Health have revealed the ability of wearable biosensors, similar to the Apple Watch or Fitbit, to detect physiological changes that may indicate illness, even before symptoms appear. The findings, published in PLoS Biology, may open the door to new ways to manage and monitor health, especially for those with limited access to doctors or clinics.
Changes in heart rate, blood pressure, and body temperature can reveal health issues, such as cardiovascular disease or infection. While these are evaluated at yearly checkups, without more frequent monitoring, diseases can go unnoticed and progress between doctor visits. Additionally, these parameters vary greatly over the course of the day and between individuals, so a one-time reading may not be representative or give enough inf
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Zika Virus Also May Have Harmful Heart Effects, Research Shows In First Report In Adults
Zika also may have serious effects on the heart, new research shows in the first study to report cardiovascular complications related to this virus, according to data being presented at the American College of Cardiology’s 66th Annual Scientific Session.
In a study at the Institute of Tropical Medicine in Caracas, Venezuela, of nine adult patients with Zika and no previous history of cardiovascular disease, all but one developed a heart rhythm problem and two-thirds had evidence of heart failure.
It is known that Zika can cause microcephaly, a severe birth defect in babies born to women infected with the virus, and Guillain-Barré syndrome, a neurological condition that can lead to muscle weakness and, in severe cases, paralysis.
“We know that other mosquito-borne diseases, such as dengue fever and chikungunya virus, can affect the heart, so we thought we might see the same with Zika.
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Unhealthy Diets Linked To More Than 400,000 Cardiovascular Deaths
Eating a diet lacking in healthy foods and/or high in unhealthy foods was linked to more than 400,000 deaths from heart and blood vessel diseases in 2015, according to an analysis presented at the American Heart Association's Epidemiology and Prevention / Lifestyle and Cardiometabolic Health 2017 Scientific Sessions.
Eating more heart healthy foods, and less foods with high amounts of salt and trans fats, could save tens of thousands of lives in the United States each year, researchers said.
"Low intake of healthy foods such as nuts, vegetables, whole grains and fruits combined with higher intake of unhealthy dietary components, such as salt and trans-fat, is a major contributor to deaths from cardiovascular disease in the UnitedStates," said Ashkan Afshin, MD, MPH, MSc, ScD, lead study author and acting assistant professor of global health at the University of Washington's Institute f
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Pokémon Go Appears To Encourage Sedentary People To Get Up And Go
The Pokémon Go craze that spurred millions of people to collect virtual monsters via a smart phone app might have also had a health benefit by encouraging people to get up and walk.
A small study at Duke Health found that some people who played the game added thousands of steps a day. The finding -- presented at the American Heart Association’s Epidemiology and Prevention / Lifestyle and Cardiometabolic Health meeting in Portland, Ore. -- suggests that it’s possible to design fun ways to increase physical activity.
“Lack of enjoyment and lack of time are the most common reasons for not being physically active,” said lead author Hanzhang Xu, a PhD student at Duke University School of Nursing. “So incorporating physical activity into the gameplay on mobile devices could provide an alternative way to promote physical activity.”
The Duke team recruited 167 iPhone users who had played Poké