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Swimming, racquet sports, and aerobics seem to be the best forms of exercise for reducing the risk of death from heart disease and stroke, research published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine has found.
The researchers said that the small number of events impaired the statistical power in some analyses. There were relatively few deaths from all causes among runners and football players, which may explain the wide confidence intervals. However, they concluded, “These findings demonstrate that participation in specific sports may have significant benefits for public health.”
Measuring a person’s waist with a piece of string is a better predictor of cardiovascular risk than using body mass index (BMI) alone, researchers have said.
A study published at the European Congress on Obesity in Prague this week supported the finding that a person was at lower cardiovascular risk if they kept their waist measurement to less than half their height measurement.
Pharmacy-based screening for cardiovascular risk
A systematic review suggests that pharmacy-based screening for cardiovascular risk factors may be possible. However, many people do not act on the advice to visit their GP, and the effect of screening on new diagnoses has not been robustly shown.
Self-management of hypertension in people at high risk of cardiovascular events
An open-label randomised controlled trial finds that people with hypertension who self-monitor their blood pressure and up-titrate their antihypertensive medication experience a greater reduction in systolic blood pressure than people who manage hypertension with usual care.
Mental health after stopping smoking
A meta-analysis finds that stopping smoking is associated with reductions in anxiety, depression and stress, and improvements in quality of life and mood.
Alpha-blockers for expulsion of ureteral stones
A Cochrane review reports that alpha-blockers are more effective at expelling ureteral stones less than 10 mm in diameter than standard therapy or calcium channel blockers.
Haemoglobin thresholds for blood transfusion
Two meta-analyses report that restricting transfusion of red blood cells to people with a haemoglobin level of either less than 7.0 g/dl or 6.4 g/dl to 9.7 g/dl reduces mortality and serious infection, but does not significantly affect the overall risk of infection.
NICE has recently published Evidence Updates on:
- Spasticity in children and young people with non-progressive brain disorders
- Ectopic pregnancy and miscarriage
- Hyperphosphataemia in chronic kidney disease