The Apple Heart Study and ISCHEMIA Trial Radio Discussion.

Heart Function Clinic has expanded hours, and now serves patients with atrial fibrillation too!
August 26, 2019

Hi everyone, hope you are all doing well.  This past Sunday, I was privileged to be a guest of Maureen McGrath, on the CKNW Sunday Night Health Show.  This show covers a wide range of health topics.  Maureen is a fantastic interviewer and here shows are always interesting!  980 AM every Sunday from 8-10 pm. I am an occasional contributor on this radio show, answering questions about heart health.

This past show, we discussed the new Apple Heart Study, which examined the effectiveness of a heart rate monitoring algorithm on the Apple Watch at detecting atrial fibrillation.  We also discussed the recent ISCHEMIA trial, suggesting that for patients with stable coronary disease, stenting or bypass surgery does not offer a survival advantage beyond medical therapy alone.

Both trials are interesting.  The Apple Heart Study is an impressive proof of concept, but needs further refinement before we could conclude this is clinically useful for managing your health.  The ISCHEMIA trial is also very interesting.  It makes me more comfortable not sending some patients for stenting or bypass, for sure.  Shared decision making is key here between doctor and patient.  However, stenting or bypass was still better than medications at relieving symptoms of angina (chest pain or pressure).  And patients with new heart attacks, reduced heart function, or critical left main blockages were not included in this trial – so the results don’t apply to them.  Finally, medical therapy is sometimes challenging to do well.  People have to take a number of different medications for this to work.  They don’t always want to take them, or can have side effects.

You can listen to my interview with Maureen here!  I hope you find it interesting.  Please let me know if you have any questions or comments!

Yours in heart health,

John

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