Coronary heart disease
Studies that have explored the links between circulation problems and cognitive decline have tended to focus on conditions that affect the blood supply to the brain, such as stroke.
Few of these earlier studies, however, have looked at the long-term links between incident coronary heart disease (CHD), such as heart attack and angina, and cognitive decline.
Heart Rhythm Disorders Care
A heart rhythm disorder, called an arrhythmia, is characterized by a heartbeat that’s too fast, too slow or uneven. At the Norma Melchor Heart & Vascular Institute at El Camino Health, our arrhythmia specialists are dedicated to providing you with the latest advances in arrhythmia treatment. Our professionals commonly participate in clinical trials to discover new therapies and improve the quality of life for people living with arrhythmias.
El Camino Health’s electrophysiology lab is equipped with sophisticated diagnostic tools. Our professionals can perform some of the latest techniques to treat arrhythmias, including minimally invasive catheter ablation and implantable devices with remote monitoring.
Your doctor can develop a customized treatment plan to manage your condition, drawing from some of the latest therapies available.
Advanced Diagnosis: Electrophysiology Study (EPS)
Your doctor may use an electrophysiology study (EPS) to assess your arrhythmia. An EPS study is performed using a thin, flexible wire that’s passed through a vessel in your upper thigh or arm to your heart to record your heart’s electrical signals. Your doctor may give you an anti-arrhythmia medicine during the test to determine whether it can stop the arrhythmia.
Implantable Cardiac Devices
Implanted resynchronization devices are used to regulate the heartbeat. These small devices, which are placed just under the skin on your chest, send electrical signals to your heart to treat the arrhythmia. A pacemaker is used to regulate a slow heartbeat, and an implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) is used to regulate a fast heartbeat.
Implanted devices have been used since the 1990s, and the technology continues to improve. At El Camino Health, our arrhythmia specialists use advanced equipment that allows them to monitor your device’s performance and your health status. Real-time data allow your doctor to customize the device to meet your specific needs.
Narrow arteries reduce blood supply
CHD, or coronary artery disease, can develop when the arteries that feed the heart become narrow and obstruct blood flow.
The arteries become narrow because fatty deposits, or plaques, build up inside their walls. Medical professionals call this process atherosclerosis.
CHD and cognitive decline
The ELSA collected data twice per year between 2002 and 2017. None of the participants had a history of heart attack, angina, or stroke or a diagnosis of dementia or Alzheimer’s disease at the start of the study period.
The researchers excluded people who did not complete all the cognitive assessments or who had a stroke during the median follow-up of 12 years.
Over the follow-up period, the participants underwent three tests of cognitive function, which the researchers conducted in eight waves. The tests assessed verbal memory, semantic fluency, and sense of time, or “temporal orientation.”
During the study period, 5.6% of the participants experienced angina or heart attacks. Everyone in this group demonstrated a more rapid decline in cognitive function in the three tests compared with those who did not experience a CHD event.
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