Heart Failure


Heart Valve Replacement Surgeries Have a Higher Case Mix Index When There is Cardiac Catheterization

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By: James Pitt  Aug. 17, 2018

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services reimburses heart valve procedures based on which of six diagnosis-related groups (DRGs) they fall in. These groups are based on whether there were complications/ comorbidities (CCs) and on whether cardiac catheterization was used.

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TCAR May Have Potential For Reducing Carotid Artery Readmissions

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By: James Pitt  Aug. 16, 2018

When plaque builds up in the arteries that carry blood to the brain, the patient has carotid artery disease. This disease creates a great risk of stroke, because plaque can break off and cause an obstruction in vessels in the brain. Carotid artery disease is involved in 8% of ischemic strokes. Per Weber and Clair 2014, “Carotid artery disease leading to stroke is one [of] the primary causes of serious long-term disability in the United States today.”

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30% of Peripheral Vascular Disorders in Texas Hospitals involve Major Complications; Fort Worth Case Study

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By: James Pitt  Aug. 15, 2018

Peripheral artery disease (PAD) is a common condition in which narrowed blood vessels reduce blood flow to the limbs. Calcium buildups on the vessel walls frequently complicate treatment. Rocha-Singh et. al write “The prevalence of VC [vascular calcification] in lower extremity PAD is inadequately defined, but data extrapolated from other vascular beds provide evidence that 30-50% of patients may manifest some degree of VC.”

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Using Mortality to Assess Potential of Baroreflex Activation Therapy

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By: James Pitt  Aug. 10, 2018

Baroreflex activation therapy is an experimental treatment for heart failure with reduced ejection fraction. A device called the BAROSTIM NEO, developed by CVRx, is currently recruiting for clinical trial (NCT02627196), with final results on heart failure morbidity and mortality expected in 2021. Preliminary results as of August 2017 include reduced heart failure hospitalization and reduced blood pressure.

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Orlando’s Two Largest Hospitals Implant Cardiovascular Devices at Similar Rates

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By: James Pitt  Jul. 18, 2018

Heart failure is the most common cause of death in the US, and the variety of treatments may seem intimidating. Even in a seemingly specific category like implants, options range from monitors to electric stimulators to total artificial hearts.

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How can Hospitals & Physicians Evaluate the Benefit of Wearable Cardiac Defibrillators (WCDs)?

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By: James Pitt  Jul. 09, 2018

Hospitals and physicians often struggle with how to evaluate the economic & quality benefits of WCDs. Hospitals & physicians face a number of challenges including:

  1. What should be the appropriate measure that measures the quality & economic benefits of WCDs?

  2. How does one get the data to measure the benefit?

  3. Can we even get the right resources & teams to analyze the data?

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At Stony Brook Hospital, High Proportion of Preserved Ejection Fraction in Heart Failure Readmissions

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By: James Pitt  Jul. 06, 2018

Heart failure can be classified by ejection fraction. In heart failure with reduced ejection fraction (HFrEF, aka LVEF), the left ventricle pumps out an unusually low fraction of the blood that enters it. HFrEF has been a focus of research efforts, because most studies find it is associated with higher mortality than heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF).

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Heart Failure with Reduced Ejection Fraction Affects Up to 17.5% of Patients at Selected Alabama Hospitals

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By: James Pitt  Jun. 22, 2018

According to the Centers for Disease Control, heart failure remains the leading cause of death in the United States for both men and women. Dexur analysts examined rates of heart failure with reduced ejection fraction (HFrEF) at Alabama hospitals with over 1,500 Medicare-eligible inpatient discharges per year. HFrEF is a subtype of heart failure generally associated with worse outcomes than heart failure with preserved ejection fraction. Dexur has previously reported on HFrEF’s effects on coronary bypass patients in Massachusetts and acute myocardial infarction patients in Florida.

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Coronary Artery Disease Affects Half of Discharges With Comorbid Heart Failure and Stroke at Four Texas Hospitals

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By: James Pitt  Jun. 18, 2018

Coronary artery disease (CAD) is the leading cause of death in the US, killing approximately 370,000 people each year. (Coronary heart disease is a synonym). It occurs when plaque builds up in the arteries that feed the heart itself, a condition called coronary atherosclerosis.

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Data for Selected Large Hospitals Shows HFrEF Contributes to as much as 17% of All 30 Day Readmissions for CABG Surgeries

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By: James Pitt  Jun. 13, 2018

Coronary artery disease is a condition in which plaque reduces blood flow through arteries to the heart. One of the most common treatments is coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG). This is a surgical procedure in which healthy blood vessels are grafted onto the heart to provide an alternate route for blood to flow, bypassing the occluded arteries.

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