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November 7th, 2019
News From Medscape
The following recommended articles on are freely available through the partnership between ABC and Medscape, no registration or login required.
Restoring the Joy of Medicine One Stressor at a Time
Caroline Gérin-Lajoie, MD, is the daughter of a doctor and a nurse who was raised to feel a bone-deep pride in the quest to help others. But it was not until she became a doctor herself that Gérin-Lajoie grasped the importance of resilience.
Deaths Linked to Transcatheter Valve Cases May Be 'Underreported'
Deaths associated with some transcatheter valve-repair procedures may be underreported in a US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) adverse events database, leaving a misleading picture of the number of associated fatalities, a new report suggests.
'Low Value' Care? More Controversy for Statins in Primary Prevention
Controversy around the use of statins for the primary prevention of cardiovascular disease is once again in the news, with a new analysis suggesting that statin use in low-risk patients "may be an example of low value care (having little benefit and potential to cause harm) in these patients and, in some cases, represent a waste of healthcare resources," researchers conclude.
Diuretic Better Bet Than ACE Inhibitor for New Hypertension?
An angiotensin-converting-enzyme (ACE) inhibitor, the most common first-line approach for newly diagnosed hypertension, is not as effective and causes more adverse effects than a thiazide diuretic, a large analysis of real-world data suggests.
By Numbers, Cardiologists Well-Positioned for Diabetes Care
Cardiologists are well-placed to provide care for patients with type 2 diabetes, given their numbers and distribution relative to diabetes cases in the United States, new research suggests. The analysis of public data revealed that the relative density of incident diabetes cases per internal medicine subspecialist was greatest for cardiologists, followed by endocrinologists and nephrologists.
Items of Interest
Emory University 'Daily Pulse' Featured Researcher: Modele Ogunniyi
Read Dr. Modele Ogunniyi’s interview with the Emory University Department of Medicine and discover what types of clinical and research work she does in the area of diabetes and heart failure in the cardiology department and at Grady Memorial Hospital.
Industry Voices: Too Many Minorities Are Experiencing Unnecessary Leg Amputations
Read Dr. Foluso Fakorede’s op-ed piece on peripheral artery disease (PAD), an often overlooked epidemic that is plaguing our communities—especially communities of color, and learn what can be done about it.
Could Taking Statins Prevent Dementia, Disability?
The National Institute on Aging (NIA) has funded a major study to examine the overall benefits and risks of cholesterol-lowering drugs known as statins in 20,000 adults age 75 or older without cardiovascular disease. The trial will help determine whether a statin can help prevent dementia and disability in this age group, as well as heart attacks and other cardiovascular-related deaths, while not increasing risks of adverse health outcomes. Funding for the trial, called Pragmatic Evaluation of Events and Benefits of Lipid-Lowering in Older Adults (PREVENTABLE), is expected to total $90 million over the next seven years.
Hospital Groups Call for Balanced Fix to Surprise Medical Billing
The American Medical Association (AMA) is looking for a balanced answer to surprise medical billing after the industry has seen a slowdown in legislation aimed to address high out-of-pocket patient costs. In a letter signed by 101 medical societies, the AMA called on Senate leaders Mitch McConnel (R-KY) and Chuck Schumer (R-NY) to lead their chamber to a consensus on surprise medical bills.
Smartphone App Reminds Heart Patients to Take Their Pills
Heart patients using a smartphone app reminder are more likely to take their medication than those who receive written instructions, according to a study presented at the 45th Argentine Congress of Cardiology (SAC 2019).
Drug Treats Inflammation Associated With Genetic Heart Disease
When young athletes experiences sudden cardiac death as they run down the playing field, it's usually due to arrhythmogenic cardiomyopathy (ACM), an inherited heart disease. Now, Johns Hopkins researchers have shed new light on the role of the immune system in the progression of ACM and, in the process, discovered a new drug that might help prevent ACM disease symptoms and progression to heart failure in some patients.
Featured Articles by Members
ABC Members: We welcome your published research submissions and articles for inclusion in future issues of Clinical Updates and Insights. Email Rachel Williams at and please attach file or include links to the original published work and/or abstract.
The Cardiovascular Disease Epidemic in African American Women: Recognizing and Tackling a Persistent Problem
By Imo Ebong and Khadijah Breathett
An editorial addressing how to reduce cardiovascular disease risk factors among African American Women.
Addressing Cardiovascular Health Disparities in Minnesota: Establishment of a Community Steering Committee by FAITH! (Fostering African-American Improvement in Total Health)
Co-authored by LaPrincess C. Brewer (with Chandrika Manjunath, Oluwatomilona Ifelayo, Clarence Jones, Monisha Washington, Stanton Shanedling, Johnnie Williams, Christi A. Patten, and Lisa A. Cooper)
Despite its rank as the fourth healthiest state in the United States, Minnesota has clear cardiovascular disease disparities between African-Americans and whites. Culturally-tailored interventions implemented using community-based participatory research (CBPR) principles have been vital to improving health and wellness among African-Americans. This paper delineates the establishment, impact, and lessons learned from the formation of a community steering committee (CSC) to guide the Fostering African-American Improvement in Total Health (FAITH!) Program, a CBPR cardiovascular health promotion initiative among African-Americans in Minnesota.
Identification of Racial Inequities in Access to Specialized Inpatient Heart Failure Care at an Academic Medical Center
Co-authored by Eldrin F. Lewis (with Lauren A. Eberly, Aaron Richterman, Anne G. Beckett, Bram Wispelwey, Regan H. Marsh, Emily C. Cleveland Manchanda, Cindy Y. Chang, Robert J. Glynn, Katherine C. Brooks, Robert Boxer, Rose Kakoza, et al.)
As part of an initiative by the Department of Medicine Health Equity Committee at Brigham and Women's Hospital, Brigham investigators conducted a retrospective cohort study of patients admitted to the Brigham with a diagnosis of heart failure. They evaluated whether race and other factors, such as age and gender, influenced whether the patient was admitted to either the specialized cardiology service or general medicine service, as well as the subsequent relationship between admission service and outcomes. The team found that patients who self­-identified as black, Latinx, female or over the age of 75 were less likely to be admitted to the cardiology service, even after adjusting for demographic and clinical factors. Their results are published in Circulation: Heart Failure.

We LOVE to LEARN how our ABC Members are making a difference! Please Share. Giving a keynote speech? Presenting at a Grand Round? Receiving an Award? Interviewed by the Press? Published in a journal? Presenter or Panelist at a Conference? Graduating? Email Rachel Williams at or please tag or DM us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram with links/details, so we can spotlight your excellence in our newsletter!

ABC Member CME Event
A Call to Action
Ask Congress to Ensure Timely Access to Medications

The “Safe Step Act” (S.2546/H.R.2279), a bipartisan bill, is pending in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives that has the potential to improve patient access to medications for the treatment of cardiovascular disease. The “Safe Step Act” (S.2546/H.R.2279) creates a clear, timely and transparent process for a patient or physician to request an exception to step therapy protocols in certain situations. Step therapy is a tactic used by insurance companies that requires a patient to try and fail on their preferred medications before covering the therapy prescribed by their health care provider.

The “Safe Step Act” is good legislation that deserves Congress' attention. Advancing the bill requires a strong show of support by elected officials. The more cosponsors a piece of legislation has, the more likely it is to receive a vote.

Tell your members of Congress why the “Safe Step Act” is important to patients with heart disease and ask for their co-sponsorship.

Taking Action is Easy. Only 3 simple steps.



Today, nearly 20 million Americans are living with peripheral artery disease (PAD) and an estimated 200,000 of them – disproportionately from minority communities – suffer avoidable amputations every year.

Fortunately, lawmakers in Congress are taking action. Representatives Donald M. Payne, Jr. (D-NJ-10) and Gus Bilirakis (R-FL-12) have worked together to establish the first Congressional PAD Caucus to educate Congress and communities about PAD while supporting legislative activities to improve PAD research, education, and treatment, with the goal of preventing non-traumatic amputations due to PAD and other related diseases.

Ask your Member of Congress to raise #PADAwareness by becoming a member of the Congressional PAD Caucus.


Upcoming Events

Register for ABC @ AHA Events

Saturday, November 16th | Philadelphia Marriott Downtown
1201 Market Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107

‘A New Beat’ Reception | 5:15pm – 6:00pm
ABC General Membership Dinner Meeting | 6:00pm – 7:00pm
ABC Dr. Walter M. Booker, Sr. Memorial Symposium | 7:00pm – 9:00pm
“Navigating and Translating Guideline Directed Therapies and Interventions to Real-World Management of Cardiovascular Disease:
A Case Based Analysis of Therapeutic Conundrums”

Co-Chairs: John M. Fontaine, MD, MBA & Gerald DeVaughn, MD


ABC-Sponsored Workshop:
Cardiac Amyloidosis: More Common Than You Think

Thursday, November 21, 2019 | 4:00pm - 5:30pm
Location: Symphony 1

Description: This workshop will focus on educating health ministries about hATTR amyloidosis and unique barriers of diagnosis for individuals of West African descent.

Experts in the field will address the following:
• Disease symptoms and risk factors
• Understanding the effects of Amyloidosis on the Heart
• Current methods of treatment for the disease
• Genetic testing barriers in communities of West African descent
• Best practices for health ministry engagement in disease state awareness, early diagnosis, and genetic testing.

John M. Fontaine, MD, MBA
Professor of Medicine, Director Arrhythmia Services
Drexel University College of Medicine
Philadelphia, PA
Kevin M. Alexander, MD
Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant Cardiologist
Stanford University
Stanford, CA


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