Violence, an ever-growing presence in our global communities, isn’t just a social issue, according to research presented at the American Heart Association’s annual Scientific Sessions in Chicago Nov. 12. It’s a public health one, too, and it can have serious consequences for our heart health.

Results of the CIRT trial presented at the American Heart Association Scientific Sessions dimmed hopes that low-dose methotrexate can reduce cardiovascular events but furthered researchers’ understanding of which inflammation-targeting therapies might succeed in that regard.

Under the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals, a blueprint for global well-being penned in 2015, officials aim to end all preventable deaths in newborns and children under 5 by 2030. And to Jackie Boucher, MS, BS, president of Children’s HealthLink in Minneapolis, that means better understanding congenital heart disease (CHD).

The Door-to-Unload pilot study concluded without any “prohibitive safety signals,” researchers reported at the American Heart Association 2018 Scientific Sessions, clearing the path for a larger trial to test the hypothesis that ventricular unloading prior to PCI with the Impella CP heart pump can reduce reperfusion injury.

A machine learning algorithm that predicts five-year mortality among patients with atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD) makes the case that patient responses to questionnaires can be just as informative in risk stratification as clinical characteristics and lab measurements.

When approached again, about a quarter of patients with atrial fibrillation (AFib) not taking anticoagulants due to physician-cited “patient refusal” said they would consider taking the drugs, according to preliminary research presented at the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions in Chicago.

The American Heart Association and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released the second set of federally recommended physical activity guidelines Nov. 12—the first update in a decade and one that heavily emphasizes the physical, mental and medical benefits of exercise.

Among patients with restored ventricular function who were taken off their heart failure medications, 44 percent relapsed within eight weeks. Researchers said the trial indicates most of these patients should remain on their treatments indefinitely.

Sacubitril-valsartan therapy was associated with greater reductions in N-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) than enalapril among patients hospitalized with acute decompensated heart failure, according to research presented Nov. 11 at the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions and published online simultaneously in the New England Journal of Medicine.

VITAL and REDUCE-IT—both highly anticipated trials revolving around the cardiovascular benefits of fish oil products—delivered mixed results at this year’s AHA Scientific Sessions in Chicago, with one trial observing few heart benefits from omega-3s while the other saw a 25 percent reduction in major cardiovascular events with a purified eicosapentaenoic acid product.

New cholesterol guidelines from the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology recommend adding ezetimibe and/or PCSK9 inhibitors to statin therapy for select high-risk patients, and also propose using coronary artery calcium (CAC) scoring as “a tiebreaker” to guide statin decisions for those at intermediate risk of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease.

It’s not just what people eat—but when—that may influence their risk of developing prediabetes and high blood pressure, according to preliminary research scheduled to be presented Nov. 10 at the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions in Chicago.