Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Anemia Complicates Heart Failure, Should Be New Focus, Doctor Says

Date:
June 6, 2002
Source:
University Of North Carolina At Chapel Hill
Summary:
Anemia, a condition arising when the blood contains too few red cells and hence not enough of the oxygen-carrying pigment known as hemoglobin, appears to be an under-appreciated contributor to problems associated with congestive heart failure (CHF), a University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill cardiologist says. That's important, he says, because an estimated 25 percent of all Americans over age 40 will develop heart failure before they die.

CHAPEL HILL -- Anemia, a condition arising when the blood contains too few red cells and hence not enough of the oxygen-carrying pigment known as hemoglobin, appears to be an under-appreciated contributor to problems associated with congestive heart failure (CHF), a University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill cardiologist says. That's important, he says, because an estimated 25 percent of all Americans over age 40 will develop heart failure before they die.

"Five million or so people have been diagnosed with, and are living with, congestive heart failure," said Dr. Kirkwood F. Adams Jr. "Because of changes in the age of our population, that number is predicted to double within a decade, and as a result, both the economic burden and the magnitude of CHF in terms of sickness and death will continue to grow. In the past, anemia has been a neglected aspect of the condition, and that needs to change if we're going to serve patients well."

Associate professor of medicine and radiology and director of the UNC Heart Failure Program, Adams prepared his remarks for delivery Thursday (June 6) at an American Medical Association briefing on anemia in New York City.

Raising hemoglobin levels through treatment with drugs that mimic erythropoietin, which boosts red cell production, might help CHF patients by improving heart function and improving their limited ability to exercise, the physician said. Researchers already have made significant progress in treating CHF in recent years, particularly with such drugs as beta-blockers.

"But up to 40 percent of patients can't take beta-blockers long-term, and so seeking additional treatments is still important," Adams said.

In people suffering from heart failure, poor blood flow contributes to systemic changes, including impaired kidney function, he said. For various reasons, patients often become anemic.

"We recognized this anemia in the past, but many physicians questioned whether it needed to be treated if it was only moderate," Adams said. "Recent studies, however, have suggested that anemia adversely affects heart function not only in dialysis patients but in CHF patients as well."

Among those studies have been clinical trials indicating that among hospitalized heart attack victims, depression of hemoglobin, even to a limited degree, was linked to increased mortality, he said.

"Then clinicians began looking at this in CHF and began finding that anemia-reduced hemoglobin was an independent predictor of adverse outcomes," Adams said.

Two recent small and preliminary studies have further shown that hemoglobin increased in patients treated with erythropoietin and that those patients' ability to exercise improved, he said. One study even suggested that the drug could cut time spent in the hospital.

UNC serves as the coordinating center for a national heart failure registry, UNITE-HF, composed of 15 academic medical centers that collect and pool patient data for study. Working with Amgen, a drug company, and registry data, Adams and colleagues have begun studying the effects of anemia on patients' physical activity and fatigue, how hormones affect anemia and quality-of-life issues.

"This focus on anemia is new, and it is definitely worth investigating because we believe it may make a difference with many congestive heart failure patients, and results so far have been encouraging," the physician said.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University Of North Carolina At Chapel Hill. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University Of North Carolina At Chapel Hill. "Anemia Complicates Heart Failure, Should Be New Focus, Doctor Says." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 June 2002. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2002/06/020606073701.htm>.
University Of North Carolina At Chapel Hill. (2002, June 6). Anemia Complicates Heart Failure, Should Be New Focus, Doctor Says. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2002/06/020606073701.htm
University Of North Carolina At Chapel Hill. "Anemia Complicates Heart Failure, Should Be New Focus, Doctor Says." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2002/06/020606073701.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida

Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida

AP (July 31, 2014) Sarasota County, Florida health officials have issued a warning against eating raw oysters and exposing open wounds to coastal and inland waters after a dangerous bacteria killed one person and made another sick. (July 31) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 30, 2014) Obamacare-related costs were said to be behind the profit plunge at Wellpoint and Humana, but Wellpoint sees the new exchanges boosting its earnings for the full year. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Peace Corps Pulls Workers From W. Africa Over Ebola Fears

Peace Corps Pulls Workers From W. Africa Over Ebola Fears

Newsy (July 30, 2014) The Peace Corps is one of several U.S.-based organizations to pull workers out of West Africa because of the Ebola outbreak. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Weather Kills 2K A Year, But Storms Aren't The Main Offender

Weather Kills 2K A Year, But Storms Aren't The Main Offender

Newsy (July 30, 2014) Health officials say 2,000 deaths occur each year in the U.S. due to weather, but it's excessive heat and cold that claim the most lives. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



      Save/Print:
      Share:

      Free Subscriptions


      Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

      Get Social & Mobile


      Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

      Have Feedback?


      Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
      Mobile: iPhone Android Web
      Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
      Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
      Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins