Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Patients who are active in their health care may lower their risk of heart disease

01.03.2005


Middle-aged women who take an active role in their health care may be less likely to develop cardiovascular disease as they transition through menopause, according to research done at the University of Pittsburgh.



The results, presented today at the American Psychosomatic Society Annual Meeting, suggest women who believe they should take charge of their health, rather than rely solely on treatment by doctors, have fewer signs of pre-clinical atherosclerosis. "Our findings provide evidence that women who believe they should be engaged in the maintenance of their health, rather than women who would rather put the responsibility for their health into someone else’s hands, somehow translate those attitudes into better health through behavioral and psychological mechanisms," said Wendy Troxel, M.S., predoctoral fellow in psychology at the University of Pittsburgh, and the study’s lead author.

The research team followed 370 middle-aged women from the Healthy Women Study, a prospective investigation of health during and following the critical menopausal transition led by Lewis H. Kuller, M.D., Dr.Ph., professor of public health at the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health.


Participants’ involvement in their health care was measured using the Krantz Health Opinion Survey. Active participants would tend to agree with a statement such as "Except for serious illness, it is generally better to take care of your own health rather than to seek professional help," while less active participants would agree with the statement "If it costs the same, I would rather have a doctor or nurse give me treatments than to do the same treatments myself."

Then, using a type of imaging called B-mode ultrasound, the researchers took measures of two reliable signs of pre-clinical cardiovascular disease, intima-media thickness (IMT) and plaque buildup. IMT is a measurement of the thickness of the artery wall and may be a factor in the later formation of plaques. Increased IMT has been shown to be a risk factor for heart attack and stroke.

Women who scored as active participants in the opinion survey had lower IMT and plaques in their arteries compared to non-active participants, which translates into a lower risk of developing heart disease or suffering a heart attack or stroke.

The results showing lower IMT in women who reported greater involvement in their health care persisted after statistically controlling for education, age during follow-up, pulse pressure, smoking history and triglycerides, and were independent of a general personality measure. "This study supports the present trend in health care to encourage patients to take an active role in their health and well-being," said Ms. Troxel.

Other authors are Dr. Kuller and Karen A. Matthews, Ph.D., professor of psychiatry and psychology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.

Craig Dunhoff | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.upmc.edu

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Millions through license revenues
27.04.2017 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn

nachricht New High-Performance Center Translational Medical Engineering
26.04.2017 | Fraunhofer ITEM

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Making lightweight construction suitable for series production

More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.

Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...

Im Focus: Wonder material? Novel nanotube structure strengthens thin films for flexible electronics

Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.

"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...

Im Focus: Deep inside Galaxy M87

The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.

Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...

Im Focus: A Quantum Low Pass for Photons

Physicists in Garching observe novel quantum effect that limits the number of emitted photons.

The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...

Im Focus: Microprocessors based on a layer of just three atoms

Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.

Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Expert meeting “Health Business Connect” will connect international medical technology companies

20.04.2017 | Event News

Wenn der Computer das Gehirn austrickst

18.04.2017 | Event News

7th International Conference on Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaics in Freiburg on April 3-5, 2017

03.04.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Bare bones: Making bones transparent

27.04.2017 | Life Sciences

Study offers new theoretical approach to describing non-equilibrium phase transitions

27.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

From volcano's slope, NASA instrument looks sky high and to the future

27.04.2017 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>