Friday, March 27, 2009

Emerging risk factors of cardiovascular diseases

Most important indicators for cardiac risks are your personal health history. Age, hereditary factors, weight, cigarette smoking, blood pressure, and diabetes. Certain other factors like High-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) Homocysteine, Lipoprotein A Lp(a) and Fibrinogen also have some role  in predicting your cardiac risks.

High-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP)   ( This test is different from the regular CRP test, which detects elevated levels of CRP in people with infections and inflammatory diseases. High levels of hs-CRP consistently predict recurrent coronary events in patients with unstable angina and acute myocardial infarction. High normal levels of hs-CRP in otherwise healthy individuals have been found to be predictive of the future risk of heart attack, stroke, sudden cardiac death, and peripheral arterial disease, even when lipid levels are within acceptable ranges. Several groups have recommended that this test be used in people with moderate risk of heart attack over the next 10 years. If hs-CRP is between 1.0 and 3.0 mg/L, a person has an average risk. If hs-CRP is higher than 3.0 mg/L, a person is at high risk.

Homocysteine:It is an amino acid that is produced in the human body. Homocysteine is normally changed into other amino acids for the use by the body. Dietery deficiency of ,folic acid,vitamin B6 and B12 associated with high levels of Haemocystein.To reduce haemocystein level ,you  require foods  rich in folic acid,vitaminB6 &B12.Other possible causes of a high homocysteine levels include low levels of thyroid hormone, kidney disease, psoriasis,some medicines or the condition runs in your family.Homocysteine may be requested as part of a cardiac risk assessment, depending on your age and other risk factors. It may also be used following a heart attack or stroke to determine treatment. Evidence suggests that measurement of homocysteine may be an even better indicator of  having a heart attack or stroke than other tests, such as cholesterol and the lipid profile.

Lipoprotein A (Lp(a): Lp(a) is a lipoprotein consisting of an LDL molecule with another protein (Apolipoprotein (a)) attached to it. Since the level of Lp(a) appears to be genetically determined and not easily altered,Lp(a) does not respond to typical strategies to lower LDL such as diet, exercise, or most lipid-lowering drugs. Studies have shown that Lipoprotein(a)act as a risk predictor for cardiac mortality in patients with acute coronary syndrome

Fibrinogen: It is circulating glycoprotein involved in final steps of coagulation,other actions include vasoconstriction at sites of vascular injury,stimulation of platelet aggregation,Influence on blood viscosity It is an acute phase reactant, increasing up to 4-fold after infectious or inflammatory stimuli,levels also increased by cigarette smoking diabetes, hypertension, obesity,sedentary lifestyle.Levels lowered with fibrates and niacin

Besides this, Certain studies reveled that an increased serum uric acid levels were independently and significantly associated with the risk of cardiovascular mortality.Elevated levels of serum uric acid level increases the risk of heart attack.Support has been given to the concept of a bacterial infection component of heart disease. The organisms chlamidia pneumonia and cytomegalovirus  both increase CRP and are associated with increased heart disease risk. 

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