The PRWIRE Press Releases https:// 2017-08-29T00:29:37Z Heart attack study finds more than a quarter of patients have no risk factors 2017-08-29T00:29:37Z heart-attack-study-finds-more-than-a-quarter-of-patients-have-no-risk-factors Risk factors such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, being diabetic, or cigarette smoking, have long been used as predictors of developing heart disease.  However, a recent study by Heart Research Australia’s Professor Gemma Figtree, published in the European Journal of Preventative Cardiology, has found that there is an increasing proportion of heart attack patients without any standard risk factors, such as high cholesterol. In Professor Figtree’s study, conducted from January 2006 to December 2014 at Royal North Shore Hospital, of the 695 patients who were treated for heart attack, 132 had no known risk factors. The proportion of heart attack patients who had no risk factors in 2006 was 11%, and over the study period, increased to an astounding 27% by 2014. “These results will have important implications for the need to both identify new triggers for heart disease and to better understand the outcomes and best management approach for this group of people”, says Figtree. The cause for this increase in proportion isn’t clear. Despite age mortality rates in Australia decreasing between 1979 and 2009, by 71% for males and 68% for females1 2, coronary heart disease continues to cause a significant burden of disease and remains the leading cause of death in Australia3. “It may be that identification and treatment of standard risk factors like high blood pressure has been successful enough that patients without these treatable conditions are making up a greater proportion of patients having heart attacks. We did find that once these patients have a heart attack, how well they do, for example in terms of risk of dying, is the same as patients with standard risk factors, so it’s just as important that we try to prevent heart attacks in this group. The next step is to identify new ways of diagnosing heart disease to enable early identification and treatment of these patients to better protect them”, says Figtree. Fast facts: - · Each year around 55,000 Australians suffer a heart attack. This equates to one heart attack every 10 minutes. · Heart attack claims 23 lives each day in Australia. · One in four people who die from a heart attack die within the first hour of their first symptom. This study was supported by Heart Research Australia and Sydney University and took place at Royal North Shore Hospital, Sydney. – ENDS – For further information or to schedule an interview: Michelle Kearney,   Heart Research Australia on 0410 922 670 or email michelle@heartresearch.com.au  Breakthrough in cancer treatments and prevention of subsequent heart failure 2017-05-24T08:14:40Z breakthrough-in-cancer-treatments-and-prevention-of-subsequent-heart-failure-1 PREVENTING HEART FAILURE DUE TO CANCER TREATMENTS: RESEARCH Life-saving research to protect cancer patients from future heart disease   Researchers from Heart Research Australia are working on a project that has the incredible potential to make cancer cells more responsive to cancer treatment and potentially eliminate the risk of developing heart failure at a later stage. A commonly used group of cancer treatment drugs called ‘anthracyclines’, which includes the common drug Doxorubicin, although effective can lead to side effects such as heart damage and heart failure. 50% of patients with severe heart failure will die within 1 year of diagnosis.[i] Heart Research Australia’s Chair of Cardiology, Professor Helge Rasmussen, and his co-investigator Dr Chia-chi Liu, are leading a project which has the amazing potential to make a significant improvement in the lives of cancer and cardiac patients. Professor Rasmussen and his team were investigating a group of proteins, called ‘FXYD proteins’ when they realised one of the proteins, FYXD 3, was overexpressed in some cancer cells including breast, pancreas, prostrate and bowel cancer cells. Their test tube experiments proved that the FXYD3 protein protects the cancer cells, making them less responsive to treatments such as Doxorubicin. The team have now developed a peptide (a small protein-like substance) which when applied to some cancer cells, “wipes out” the protective effect of the FXYD 3 protein. “In our studies, when we put the peptide on breast cancer cells and treated it with Doxorubicin, it amplified the effect of the Doxorubicin tenfold.” says Professor Rasmussen. While these results are from test-tube experiments, if Professor Rasmussen and his team could prove this action to have the same effect on some cancers in people, it is possible doctors could use a tenfold lower dose of Doxorubicin (for example) and still get the same results from the treatment. In doing so, this would reduce damage to the heart, and likely eliminate the risk of developing heart failure. Professor Rasmussen is cautiously optimistic, but does acknowledge that this research not only has the potential to reduce damage to the heart, it could also lead to a cure for some cancers. “Heart damage is often now the limiting factor in cancer treatment. You can treat the cancer, but if you damage the heart, it doesn’t always recover. Sometimes people get their cancer treated or even cured, but then they can die from heart failure,” says Professor Rasmussen. “Our work is extremely exciting as it has the potential to drastically change the way we treat cancer.” Fast Facts[ii]: ·      Around 100,000 Australians are living with heart failure.  ·      20–30% of patients with mild to moderate heart failure will die within one year ·      50% of patients with severe heart failure will die within one year ·      Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples experience chronic heart failure at a younger age and are more likely to die than non-Indigenous Australians ·      Heart failure costs are estimated to be more than $1 billion per annum [i] Watson et al. 2000   [ii] Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. Heart failure… what of the future? Bulletin no. 6. Canberra: AIHW, 2003. Breakthrough in cancer treatments and prevention of subsequent heart failure 2017-05-24T07:47:36Z breakthrough-in-cancer-treatments-and-prevention-of-subsequent-heart-failure Researchers from Heart Research Australia are working on a project that has the incredible potential to make cancer cells more responsive to cancer treatment and potentially eliminate the risk of developing heart failure at a later stage. A commonly used group of cancer treatment drugs called ‘anthracyclines’, which includes the common drug Doxorubicin, although effective can lead to side effects such as heart damage and heart failure. 50% of patients with severe heart failure will die within 1 year of diagnosis.[i] Heart Research Australia’s Chair of Cardiology, Professor Helge Rasmussen, and his co-investigator Dr Chia-chi Liu, are leading a project which has the amazing potential to make a significant improvement in the lives of cancer and cardiac patients. Professor Rasmussen and his team were investigating a group of proteins, called ‘FXYD proteins’ when they realised one of the proteins, FYXD 3, was overexpressed in some cancer cells including breast, pancreas, prostrate and bowel cancer cells. Their test tube experiments proved that the FXYD3 protein protects the cancer cells, making them less responsive to treatments such as Doxorubicin. The team have now developed a peptide (a small protein-like substance) which when applied to some cancer cells, “wipes out” the protective effect of the FXYD 3 protein. “In our studies, when we put the peptide on breast cancer cells and treated it with Doxorubicin, it amplified the effect of the Doxorubicin tenfold.” says Professor Rasmussen. While these results are from test-tube experiments, if Professor Rasmussen and his team could prove this action to have the same effect on some cancers in people, it is possible doctors could use a tenfold lower dose of Doxorubicin (for example) and still get the same results from the treatment. In doing so, this would reduce damage to the heart, and likely eliminate the risk of developing heart failure. Professor Rasmussen is cautiously optimistic, but does acknowledge that this research not only has the potential to reduce damage to the heart, it could also lead to a cure for some cancers. “Heart damage is often now the limiting factor in cancer treatment. You can treat the cancer, but if you damage the heart, it doesn’t always recover. Sometimes people get their cancer treated or even cured, but then they can die from heart failure,” says Professor Rasmussen. “Our work is extremely exciting as it has the potential to drastically change the way we treat cancer.” Fast Facts[ii]: ·      Around 100,000 Australians are living with heart failure.  ·      20–30% of patients with mild to moderate heart failure will die within one year ·      50% of patients with severe heart failure will die within one year ·      Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples experience chronic heart failure at a younger age and are more likely to die than non-Indigenous Australians ·      Heart failure costs are estimated to be more than $1 billion per annum [i] Watson et al. 2000   [ii] Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. Heart failure… what of the future? Bulletin no. 6. Canberra: AIHW, 2003. HEART RESEARCH AUSTRALIA’S CEO A FINALIST IN NSW TELSTRA BUSINESS WOMEN AWARDS 2014-10-09T01:12:57Z heart-research-australia-s-ceo-a-finalist-in-nsw-telstra-business-women-awards Heart Research Australia’s CEO Mrs Floyd Larsen has been named as a finalist in the category for Community and Government Awards, for the 2014 Telstra New South Wales Business Women’s Awards. Heart Research Australia funds first-stage research that aims to identify new and better ways to diagnose, treat and prevent heart disease – Australia's Number one (1) killer. Being 100% community funded, Heart Research Australia’s priority is the seed-funding for researchers so they can investigate innovative ideas, primarily derived from their clinical experience as cardiologists. Floyd said: “I am truly humbled and honoured to have been anonymously nominated for this award. This recognition is testament to the Board of Heart Research Australia, and their visionary support of the transformational change required to secure the future sustainability of the Foundation, not only preserving the current level of research support but the vision to increase and broaden the research investment and therefore impact made by the Foundation. I am also so proud and so indebted to my wonderful hard-working team of ladies at Heart Research Australia”. Floyd joined Heart Research Australia as their CEO in January 2012, and is especially passionate about raising awareness about women and heart disease. ““Heart disease is the leading cause of death in Australian women, with more than 11,000 women dying from it every year, and yet only 1 in 10 women are aware of this silent killer[1]. My hope is that by being a Finalist for this prestigious award, I will not only be able to raise the profile of Heart Research Australia and the amazing research projects we fund, but also empower women to take charge of their heart health and be aware of their modifiable risks.” Visit heartresearch.com.au for further information about Heart Research Australia and how you can protect future generations from heart disease.   ENDS. For further information or to schedule an interview, contact Michelle Kearney, Communications Manager, Heart Research Australia at michelle@heartresearch.com.au or (M) 0410 922 670. Should an acronym be essential due to space constraints, kindly use “HROz” when referring to the organisation. About Heart Research Australia – www.heartresearch.com.au Heart Research Australia raises funds for research into the diagnoses, treatment and prevention of Australia’s biggest killer – heart disease. We strive to support life-saving heart research that benefits all Australians. [1] Australian Bureau of Statistics. Causes of Death, Australia. (3303.0). 2009 Protect the Hero of the Home this Father's Day 2014-09-03T03:48:02Z protect-the-hero-of-the-home-this-father-s-day FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Media Release Protect the hero of the home this Father’s Day This year celebrity Chef Alessandro Pavoni, owner of hatted restaurant Ormeggio and Ambassador of Heart Research Australia, will be celebrating his first Father’s Day. After surviving cancer and two heart attacks, it was a day he thought he would never be lucky enough to experience. Alessandro says he owes his life to the Heart Research Australia funded SALAMI Program which led to stents rather than slow acting drugs being used as the treatment of choice for heart attacks patients at Royal North Shore Hospital. The new protocol saw mortality rates for heart attack victims drop from 30% to 8% and has since been adopted as best practice by hospitals around the country. Anna, his wife says “It was incredible to learn that research funded by Heart Research Australia led to the very practices and approaches that saved Alessandro.”  Alessandro and Anna recently become very proud parents to a beautiful baby girl Jada, making them even more appreciative and grateful for the medical treatment Alessandro received.  Anna says “I can’t be grateful enough or shout it loud enough from the rooftops about how much we all need Heart Research Australia. Heart attacks can happen to anyone – even your young, fit friends and family.”  “Despite life-saving advances such as the SALAMI program, heart disease sadly still affects two out of three families, and someone’s son, father or husband is taken away every two hours in Australia due to a fatal heart attack*. Heart Research Australia is passionate about reducing the incidence of heart disease, through continued funding of innovative life-saving research into the detection, treatment and prevention of heart disease”, says Mrs Floyd Larsen, CEO Heart Research Australia.  “This Father’s Day we urge the Father’s, son’s and husbands of Australia, who are the heroes of the home, to empower themselves with the knowledge on how to protect themselves from future heart disease, by visiting our website for heart health information and to make a donation to contribute towards our funding of life-saving heart research,”  add Larsen. Alessandro opened his first restaurant, Ormeggio at the Spit, in 2009 and this Father’s Day he will design a special Father’s Day lunch menu and donate $5 to Heart Research Australia for every guest that day.   Ormeggio at the Spit offers Contemporary Italian cuisine in a spectacular waterside setting, overlooking Middle Harbour and Pearl Bay. It has Two Chef Hats in the Sydney Morning Herald’s Good Food Guide 2014 and has been a hatted restaurant since opening in 2009. Visit www.ormeggio.com.au to secure your booking.   For further information or to support Heart Research Australia’s research visit www.heartresearch.com.au  ENDS. *Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics. Australian Health Survey 2011/12 For further information or to schedule an interview, contact Michelle Kearney, Communications Manager, Heart Research Australia at michelle@heartresearch.com.au or (M) 0410 922 670. Should an acronym be essential due to space constraints, kindly use “HROz” when referring to the organisation. About Heart Research Australia – www.heartresearch.com.au Heart Research Australia raises funds for research into the diagnoses, treatment and prevention of Australia’s biggest killer – heart disease. We strive to support life-saving heart research that benefits all Australians. #GetMoving to save Australia's hearts 2014-06-25T00:20:01Z getmoving-to-save-australia-s-hearts Media Release #GetMoving to save Australia’s hearts  Did you know that heart disease is Australia’s biggest killer?    Heart Research Australia is passionate about reducing the incidence of heart disease, which affects two out of three families, is the Number 1 killer of women and kills one Australian every 12 minutes! The Foundation is dedicated to raising funds for first-stage innovative research into the detection, treatment and prevention of heart disease, aimed at reducing the devastating impact this disease has on families and communities.  As daunting as these facts are, heart disease can be largely prevented by simply knowing the risk factor and following a heart healthy lifestyle, which includes a balanced diet and regular exercise.  “We are very proud to be launching our new #GetMoving campaign, which is a unique new digital campaign aimed at driving awareness of heart disease, and motivating everyone to love their hearts by eating healthily and incorporating simple forms of exercise into their daily life this winter,” said Lana Sturmer, Campaigns & Marketing Manager, Heart Research Australia.  The campaign launches on 1 July, inviting Australian’s to ‘Like’ the Heart Research Australia Facebook page, entering their details and stand a chance to win some fantastic prizes, such as an Anytime Fitness gym membership for a year and a $500 yoga wardrobe from Dharma Bums, all for simply sharing their #GetMoving posts.  “Being inactive almost doubles your risk for coronary heart disease. 30 minutes a day is enough to bring wide-ranging benefits, whether it’s swapping the lift for the stairs, taking the dog for a walk or enjoying a brisk walk with a friend – #GetMoving is all about simple ways to get your heart pumping and improving your heart health,” added Sturmer. Studies show that doing more than 150 minutes (2 hours and 30 minutes) of moderate physical activity or an hour of vigorous physical activity every week will reduce your risk of coronary heart disease by about 30%.   “The good news is that even small increases in physical fitness are associated with a significant reduction in cardiovascular risk, even if you have existing disease. We invite all Australian’s to join our fight against heart disease and get their hearts moving by supporting our fun, interactive #GetMoving campaign.” For further information about #GetMoving visit the Heart Research Australia’s website at  www.heartresearch.com.au  or email marketing@heartresearch.com.au  ENDS. Should an image be required, please refer to contact details. Facts: * The majority of Australians aged 15 years or over do little or no exercise.. * Sufficient physical activity can reduce the effects of some of the risk factors for CVD, Type 2 diabetes and CKD such as obesity, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. * Almost 70% of Australians were sedentary or undertook low levels of physical activity. * People living in areas of lower socioeconomic status were more likely to have sedentary levels of physical activity, as were those living in outer regional, rural and remote areas. * Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples also reported higher levels of sedentary physical activity. Source: AIHW analysis of the ABS 2007–08 National Health Survey and ABS 2004–05 National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Survey. For further information or to schedule an interview, contact Michelle Kearney, Communications Manager, Heart Research Australia at michelle@heartresearch.com.au or (M) 0410 922 670. Should an acronym be essential due to space constraints, kindly use “HROz” when referring to the organisation. About Heart Research Australia – www.heartresearch.com.au  Heart Research Australia raises funds for research into the diagnoses, treatment and prevention of Australia’s biggest killer – heart disease. We are dedicated to supporting life-saving heart research that benefits all Australians. Men's Health Week 9-15 June 2014-06-10T05:50:16Z men-s-health-week-9-15-june Every day, 98 Australian men have a heart attack, of these 1 in 7 die. Heart Research Australia calls upon the men of Australia to be more vigilant about their heart health during Men’s Health Week (9-16 June) by visiting their doctor and having a heart health check. Heart disease often has no visible symptoms, which is why it is so important to see your doctor for a heart health check. This involves having your blood pressure, cholesterol and glucose levels checked, and finding out what the risk factors for heart disease are – all of which can be done as part of a routine check-up. “We lead such busy lifestyles, often worrying more about others and forgetting to take care of ourselves. If you’re a man over 45 years of age, we urge you to talk to your doctor about your heart health and have your blood pressure and cholesterol level tested - termed the silent killers, they often have no visible symptoms, and a heart attack could be the last fatal sign”, says Floyd Larsen, CEO Heart Research Australia. To reduce your risk of a heart attack:  •Do not smoke •Eat healthy  •Be physically active •Know your blood pressure •Know your cholesterol and blood sugar levels •Know the risk factors for heart disease •Know the symptoms of a heart attack Heart Research Australia supports and funds first-stage innovative research into the detection, treatment and prevention of heart disease.  “It is only through research into preventative measures and treatments that we can make a difference to the heart health of our future generation and we invite everyone to join our fight against heart disease by supporting the research we fund”, added Larsen.  Visit www.heartresearch.com.au for further information about heart health and life-saving research. ENDS. For further information or to schedule an interview, contact Michelle Kearney, Communications Manager, Heart Research Australia at michelle@heartresearch.com.au or Tel: (02) 9436 0056 Should an acronym be essential due to space constraints, kindly use “HROz” when referring to the organisation. About Heart Research Australia – www.heartresearch.com.au  Heart Research Australia raises funds for research into the diagnoses, treatment and prevention of Australia’s biggest killer – heart disease. We strive to support life-saving heart research that benefits all Australians. Medical Research Week: 1-8 June 2014-06-05T01:50:47Z medical-research-week-1-8-june June 1-8 is Medical Research Week, celebrating the dedication, commitment, passion and accomplishments of thousands of Australian scientists who work to advance knowledge and improve health and well-being of humanity. “Funding and supporting research is at the centre of what Heart Research Australia is all about and we salute our researchers during Medical Research Week for their commitment, determination, and passion to reduce the incidence of heart disease in Australia,” says Floyd Larsen, CEO of Heart Research Australia. Heart Research Australia funds research that aims to identify new and better ways to diagnose, treat and prevent heart disease – Australia's Number one (1) killer. Being 100% community funded, Heart Research Australia’s priority is the seed-funding for researchers so they can investigate innovative ideas, primarily derived from their clinical experience as cardiologists. Between 1997 and 2004, Heart Research Australia funded two internationally recognised pilot studies that have cut heart-attack mortality rates at Royal North Shore Hospital from 30% to a world beating 2%! Some of the current studies Heart Research Australia’s researchers are investigating include: •Novel treatments of cardiovascular disease •Repairing hearts with stem cells •Bereavement and heart health •Improving heart function in preterm babies •Plaque build-up in vein grafts “The future of our health lies heavily on the shoulders of medical researchers, who all have one common goal – to reduce the incidence and devastating impact current diseases have on our society as well as securing the future generation from being impacted! Heart Research Australia appreciates the wonderful work our researchers do and is very proud to contribute to their innovative research into heart disease,” added Larsen. For further information or to support Heart Research Australia’s research visit www.heartresearch.com.au   World No Tobacco Day: 31 May 2014-05-28T05:16:15Z world-no-tobacco-day-31-may Smoking kills more than 40 Australians a day, of which nearly 40% of deaths from smoking are due to cardiovascular disease. World No Tobacco Day takes place each year on 31 May, highlighting the health risks associated with tobacco use and advocating for effective policies to reduce tobacco consumption. Smoking is a major risk factor for heart disease, and Heart Research Australia not only supports World No Tobacco Day, but also funds the Heart Research Australia’s Chair of Preventative Cardiology’s Professor Geoffrey Tofler’s research into smoking cessation. A recent study conducted by Professor Tofler and colleagues involved 116 patients with suspected heart attacks, exploring why smokers find it easier to stop smoking after a teachable moment such as a heart attack, even though they were unable to do so previously.  Prof Geoffrey Tofler, cardiologist and lead author of the study which was published in the Journal of Smoking Cessation, said “Almost two thirds (65%) of the 116 patients (84 men and 32 women) who were hospitalised at Royal North Shore and North Shore Private Hospitals were able to stop smoking after the heart attack, and this was well maintained for one year (61%). The impact of the heart attack was stronger than when the patients only had angina, and their quitting was also more likely to occur if the patient was living with a non-smoker.” Prof Roger Bartrop, psychiatrist and study investigator, stated that the strongest motivator for quitting was the heart attack and its consequences, supported by the importance of the personalized impact of the heart attack.  Registered Nurses Ann Kirkness and Helen Glinatsis, also noted that the initial quit rate was greater among those who attended cardiac rehabilitation.  The researchers have extended this idea of the heart attack as a teachable moment, by producing a simulated, personalized video, whereby a smoker without heart disease can view himself or herself having a heart attack and see the consequences it has on their loved ones. This novel approach to behaviour change which uses simulated videos to assist with smoking cessation in people without heart trouble is being explored in a larger randomised trial, which is currently recruiting smokers to assist in their research. Anyone interested in participating can contact Robin May on Tel: 02 9462 9177. “Tobacco smoking is the single most preventable cause of ill health and death in Australia. It contributes to more hospitalisations and deaths each year than alcohol and illicit drug use combined. Heart Research Australia is dedicated to continue its funding of the detection and prevention of heart disease, through life-saving research such as Professor Tofler’s study, which aims to provide a clearer pathway to encourage people to quit this dangerous habit before it’s too late”, Floyd Larsen, CEO Heart Research Australia. Visit www.heartresearch.com.au for further heart saving information and advice. ENDS.   For further information or to schedule an interview, contact Michelle Kearney, Communications Manager, Heart Research Australia at michelle@heartresearch.com.au or Tel: (02) 9436 0056 Should an acronym be essential due to space constraints, kindly use “HROz” when referring to the organisation. About Heart Research Australia – www.heartresearch.com.au Heart Research Australia raises funds for research into the diagnoses, treatment and prevention of Australia’s biggest killer – heart disease. Our goal is to reduce the devastating impact of the disease on the community. World Hypertension Day 17 May 2014-05-14T01:16:16Z world-hypertension-day-17-may High blood pressure is one of the leading risk factors for heart disease, which is why Heart Research Australia supports World Hypertension Day on 17 May, to raise awareness about this ‘silent killer’. “Termed the silent killer because often there are no symptoms or signs of high blood pressure, most individuals do not feel sick or are aware that their blood pressure is elevated. Often high blood pressure goes untreated until another medical condition such as a heart attack presents itself”, says Floyd Larsen, CEO Heart Research Australia. “The only way to find out if your blood pressure is high is by having it checked regularly by a health professional, thereby reducing your chances of developing or suffering from heart disease”. There are several ways that you can reduce your chances of developing high blood pressure:  •Have you blood pressure checked regularly  •Don’t  smoke •Limit your alcohol intake •Include at least 30 minutes of exercise every day •Limit your salt intake •Follow a healthy, well-balanced diet High blood pressure can be contributed to many factors, such as unhealthy eating habits and bad lifestyle choices, but in some cases it can present itself by no fault of your own, such as during pregnancy.  Heart Research Australia is funding a study into the effects pre-eclampsia has on mothers after they have given birth.  Pre-eclampsia affects 5-10% of all pregnancies and is associated with high blood pressure and impaired kidney function in the second half of pregnancy. Pre-eclampsia is a leading cause of maternal death and disability and carries lifelong implications should the mother survive (such as increased risk of cardiovascular disease).  Pre-eclampsia is thought to be caused by proteins, derived from the placenta, that cause distress in the blood vessels of the mother. The study investigates whether this specific protein contributes to the deterioration of the heart where it fails to circulate blood around the body which can either occur in the last month of pregnancy and up to five months after delivery of the baby. “Heart disease can affect us all, and it is only through life-saving research like this which Heart Research Australia supports and funds that we can work towards reducing the incidence of heart disease amongst all Australians. By supporting international awareness campaigns such a World Hypertension Day we are contributing to the fight against heart disease and raising awareness of the risk factors, such as high blood pressure” added Floyd.   For further information about the risk factors for heart disease visit www.heartresearch.com.au and donate to towards the life-saving research Heart Research Australia supports. ENDS High Blood Pressure Stats: •Over 3.7 million Australians aged 25 years + (30%) have high blood pressure. •In a recent survey 1 in 2 people didn’t know their blood pressure levels prior to their check. •51 million prescriptions were supplied to lower blood pressure in 2008. •90% of adults have one modifiable risk factor for stroke and heart disease, while 64% have three or more. •Salt intake impacts blood pressure. 75% of the salt we consume comes from processed food. I.Sources: II.AJHW 2012, Australia’s Health 2012, Australia’s Health series no.13 Catno AUS 156. Canberra  AJHW III.Unpublished. Know your numbers Evaluation Report. Part A, Monash University 2013. IV.AJHW 2012. Australia’s Health 2012, Australia’s Health Series no13. Cat.no.AUS 156. Canberra AJHW V.NVDPA Guidelines for the management of absolute cardiovascular disease risk 2012 VI.AWASH http://www.awash.org.au For further information or to schedule an interview, contact Michelle Kearney, Communications Manager, Heart Research Australia at michelle@heartresearch.com.au or Tel: (02) 9436 0056 Should an acronym be essential due to space constraints, kindly use “HROz” when referring to the organisation. About Heart Research Australia – www.heartresearch.com.au  Heart Research Australia raises funds for research into the diagnoses, treatment and prevention of Australia’s biggest killer – heart disease. Founded in 1986 as the North Shore Heart Research Foundation, the idea was to fund first-stage, 'out of the notebook' research that would have never progressed to clinical trials without the help of the community. Twenty -six years later, rebranded as Heart Research Australia, we strive to support life-saving research that benefits all Australians. Heart Week: 4-10 May 2014-05-07T02:26:28Z heart-week-4-10-may She could be your mother, your sister or your daughter. She could be one of thousands of women in Australia unaware of their risk for heart disease, and unable to recognize an early heart attack. Heart Research Australia’s call to action during Heart Week (4-10 May) is to highlight these risks and create awareness of heart disease among women. “Most women think they are immune to heart disease,” explains Floyd Larsen, CEO of Heart Research Australia. “They fear breast cancer more than heart disease and still believe it is mostly a disease which only affects men. Even when they are experiencing a heart attack they may not be aware of it as their symptoms vary from those of a man.” “Even though one in three women will suffer or die from cardiovascular disease in Australia, there is very little public awareness around this.  Not only are women not thinking about heart disease, their symptoms are often atypical, confusing both patients and even physicians.” While men may have the classic central chest pain, women will confuse their chest pain with indigestion or heartburn. Women also experience jaw pain, shoulder pain, sweating, nausea and fatigue. Recognizing early heart attacks helps prevent the larger heart attack, where more heart function is lost, recovery is longer and the risk of mortality is higher. Women who can recognize a possible early heart attack may also be candidates for varying medical and surgical interventions that help prevent the larger, more dangerous heart attack. “It’s a lifestyle disease.  Today’s woman has to make time for her work and family, often leaving little time to worry about herself.  This Heart Week we want to make women aware of the risks of heart disease now whilst they still have time to change their lifestyle,” says Larsen. Heart Research Australia funded two ground-breaking studies which reduced the mortality rates of heart attack patients at Sydney's Royal North Shore Hospital from 30% to a world-beating 2%, as well as reducing the time-lapse from onset of symptoms to surgery by more than 100 minutes. Time is muscle and the sooner the patient is diagnosed, the more heart muscle doctors are able to save, which is crucial in the recovery time and longer-term quality of life. “Mother’s Day is also around the corner and Heart Research Australia urges Australian women, who are essentially the heart of our homes, and their loved ones, to invest in their future heart health by making a donation to Heart Research Australia, and contributing towards life-saving research and innovative treatment of heart disease,” added Larsen.  For further information about the risk factors for heart disease and the symptoms of a heart attack in women, visit www.heartresarch.com.au and donate to towards the life-saving research Heart Research Australia supports. ENDS. Heart Facts Heart disease is not just a disease of older women. It is the leading cause of death for women aged 35 and older. • Heart disease kills 4 times as many women as breast cancer. •  Almost 30% of Australian women have one or more of these yet many don’t know they are risk factors that must be managed. These risk factors don’t usually have obvious symptoms. • Women often experience milder symptoms of heart disease. About one-third of women have atypical symptoms of heart disease with no chest pain at all. • Heart disease symptoms often go unrecognized and untreated in women. This results in more advanced vessel disease with a poorer outcome. • Women who have heart attacks are twice as likely as men to die within the first few weeks after the event   For further information or to schedule an interview with a researcher, contact Michelle Kearney, Communications Manager, Heart Research Australia at michelle@heartresearch.com.au or Tel: (02) 9436 0056 Should an acronym be essential due to space constraints, kindly use “HROz” when referring to the organisation. About Heart Research Australia – www.heartresearch.com.au Heart Research Australia raises funds for research into the diagnoses, treatment and prevention of Australia’s biggest killer – heart disease. Founded in 1986 as the North Shore Heart Research Foundation, the idea was to fund first-stage, 'out of the notebook' research that would have never progressed to clinical trials without the help of the community. Twenty -six years later, rebranded as Heart Research Australia, we strive to support life-saving research that benefits all Australians. Save the "Heart of the Home" this Mother's Day 2014-04-30T02:00:07Z save-the-heart-of-the-home-this-mother-s-day This Mother’s Day we will honour the role of wives, mothers and grandmothers in our society, who are often affectionately termed as the ‘hearts of our home’, and who endlessly take care of us, often forsaking their own well-being and health. Heart disease is often perceived as a disease that only affects older men, when in fact it is the leading cause of death for both men and women, and kills on average 27 women every day in Australia. Heart disease is the Number 1 killer of women in Australia – a bold fact that is unknown to most women and defined by a disease which is largely preventable by simply following a healthy active lifestyle and being aware of the risk factors. Hard facts and life-saving research CEO of Heart Research Australia, Floyd Larsen is passionate about this cause, “Heart disease is the leading cause of death in Australian women, with more than 11,000 women dying from it every year, and yet only 1 in 10 women are aware of this silent killer. “This Mother’s Day we urge Australian women, who are essentially the heart of our homes, and their loved ones, to empower themselves with the knowledge on how to protect them from future heart disease, by visiting our special Mother’s Day website page for more information and making a donation to support our funding for research into the treatment and prevention of heart disease and associated medical conditions.” Eternally grateful for every day Lynne Ravenhall, a heart disease survivor says, “I support Heart Research Australia’s passion to spread the word on the importance of women looking after, and being aware of their heart health. “My condition was, mostly, hereditary, and since my by-pass in 2001 I have been a loyal and committed supporter of Heart Research Australia, because I’ve been one of the many people who has directly benefited from the research they fund and support.    “It is with thanks to them that I have enjoyed some of the best years of my life with my husband, children, grandchildren, and friends, as well as the simple joys of life like a cappuccino at our local cafe.  “‘Thanks’ doesn't seem enough to say, as I am eternally grateful to be enjoying my life unlike my father who died aged 54 after a series of heart attacks, followed by his elder brother a couple of years later.  Two other uncles died within 6 weeks of my father. My sister Rhonda had a major stroke at 51 and in spite of recovering initially and taking every precaution with her health, another stroke at 53 led to her death.  It is in memory of them and other family members that I will always support Heart Research Australia.” Never too late to love your heart It is never too late to start taking care of your heart, by taking simple steps such as following a balanced diet, incorporating exercise into your day, not smoking and being aware of your blood pressure and cholesterol levels. High blood pressure and high cholesterol are often termed the ‘silent killers’ as they have no visible symptoms, and Heart Research Australia recommends having an annual check-up at your doctor to ensure your numbers are at a safe level.  Symptoms of a heart attack As with men, the most common heart attack symptom in women is chest pain or discomfort. But it’s important to note that women are more likely to experience the other common symptoms, particularly shortness of breath, nausea/vomiting and back or jaw pain. Heart disease can be prevented – empower yourself with the knowledge on how to save and protect the hearts of our home – the women in our lives – from future heart disease. Visit heartresearch.com.au for further information about Heart Research Australia’s “Save the heart of our home” Mother’s Day campaign.   -ENDS- For further information or to schedule an interview with a researcher, contact Michelle Kearney, Communications Manager, Heart Research Australia at michelle@heartresearch.com.au or Tel: (02) 9436 0056    About Heart Research Australia – www.heartresearch.com.au Heart Research Australia raises funds for research into the diagnoses, treatment and prevention of Australia’s biggest killer – heart disease. Founded in 1986 as the North Shore Heart Research Foundation, the idea was to fund first-stage, 'out of the notebook' research that would have never progressed to clinical trials without the help of the community. Twenty-six years later, rebranded as Heart Research Australia, we to strive to support life-changing research that benefits all Australians.  Should an acronym be essential due to space constraints, kindly use “HROz” when referring to the organisation. HEART ATTACK INFLUENCES THE WILL TO QUIT SMOKING 2014-04-03T03:32:13Z heart-attack-influences-the-will-to-quit-smoking Cigarette smoking remains a major risk factor and preventable cause of heart disease, yet despite advances in assisting people to quit this dangerous habit, little is known as to what finally triggers the urge and final straw to quit for good.  Heart Research Australia recently supported a study conducted at Royal North Shore Hospital to investigate how having a heart attack can be a reason for behaviour change, and can be seen as a teachable moment, which is a naturally occurring health event that personally affects a person and motivates them to adopt risk-reducing health behaviours. The study, which was published in the “Journal of Smoking Cessation”, involved 116 patients with suspected heart attacks, and explored why smokers are more able to stop smoking once they have a major health event like a heart attack, even though they were unable to do so previously.   Prof Geoffrey Tofler, cardiologist and lead author of the study, said “Almost two thirds (65%) of the 116 patients (84 men and 32 women) who were hospitalised at Royal North Shore and North Shore Private Hospitals were able to stop smoking after the heart attack, and this was well maintained for one year (61%). The impact of the heart attack was stronger than when the patients only had angina, and their quitting was also more likely to occur if the patient was living with a non-smoker.”  Prof Roger Bartrop, psychiatrist and study investigator, stated that the finding that the strongest motivator for quitting was the heart attack and its consequences, supported the importance of the personalized impact of the heart attack.  “Three-quarters (77%) of those who had quit at one month did so without additional aids.  The benefit of having a non-smoking partner on quitting emphasized the value of a positive home environment.” Registered Nurses Ann Kirkness and Helen Glinatsis, who conducted most of the interviews, also noted that the initial quit rate was greater among those who attended cardiac rehabilitation.   The researchers have extended this idea of the heart attack as a teachable moment, by producing a simulated, personalized video, whereby a smoker with no prior heart disease can view him or herself as a smoker who potentially suffers a heart attack with consequences for their loved ones.  In an initial evaluation of this simulated video approach, Robin May, psychologist and lead author, reported that half of the subjects (8 of 13) were abstinent at 3 months, and this quit rate was sustained at 12 months. This novel approach to using simulated videos to assist with smoking cessation is being explored in a larger randomised trial, which is currently recruiting smokers to assist in their research. Anyone interested in participating can contact Robin May on Tel: 02 9462 9177.  “Smoking is one of the leading risk factors of heart disease and yet it is one of the most preventable risk factors as well! This is why Heart Research Australia is passionate about supporting and funding research into the behavioural influences that could trigger a person to quit this dangerous habit and empowering people to start living a heart healthy lifestyle”, said Floyd Larsen, CEO at Heart Research Australia.  Visit www.heartresearch.com.au for further heart saving information and advice.