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Richard N. Fogoros, M.D.

Heart Health Center

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Premature Ventricular Complexes (PVCs)

Saturday April 19, 2014

PVCs are a common form of cardiac arrhythmia, and their significance can be confusing to both patients and their doctors. Read about PVCs, how to tell if they're medically significant, and how they are treated, here.

Should I Have A Coronary Calcium Scan?

Sunday April 13, 2014

A reader asks whether his doctor's recommendation that he have a coronary calcium scan - despite not having any cardiac symptoms, and with a normal stress test - is a reasonable one.

Read Should I Have A Coronary Calcium Scan?

Postpartum Cardiomyopathy

Friday April 11, 2014

On rare occasions, pregnancy can lead to a condition called postpartum cardiomyopathy, or pregnancy-associated heart failure.

Women who develop postpartum cardiomyopathy experience the onset of heart failure either during the last month of pregnancy, or within five months of delivering a baby. These women have no prior underlying heart disease, and no other identifiable reason to develop heart disease. Their heart failure can be a temporary, self-limited condition, or can progress to severe, life-threatening heart failure.

Read here about postpartum cardiomyopathy.

Are E-Cigarettes Really Ineffective?

Monday April 7, 2014

A recent, highly-publicized study has concluded that e-cigarettes are not effective in promoting smoking cessation.  In fact, the study design does not permit us to say much, one way or the other, about the efficacy of e-cigarettes.  The way the press and much of the medical establishment have embraced this study to disparage e-cigarettes says more about their anti-e-cigarette agenda, than it does about the actual study, or the usefulness of e-cigarettes themselves.

Smokers who sincerely want to quit deserve every opportunity to do so. As society deliberates on the appropriate role of e-cigarettes in smoking cessation, we ought to expect reasonable objectivity from the media and medical editorialists.

Read "Are E-Cigarettes Really Ineffective?"

Treating Vasovagal (Cardioneurogenic) Syncope

Friday April 4, 2014

While many doctors refer to vasovagal (cardioneurogenic) syncope as "simple fainting spells," treating this condition sometimes can be anything but simple.

Here is a review of the treatment of vasovagal syncope.

Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS)

Tuesday April 1, 2014

For people who have postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (Pots), merely standing up can produce severe symptoms. When upright, their heart rates increase to uncomfortable levels. While symptoms - most often lightheadedness and palpitations - may be only mild, they are often incapacitating.

Read about the causes and treatment of POTS here.

How Diabetes Contributes To Heart Disease

Saturday March 29, 2014

If you have diabetes or metabolic syndrome, your risk of developing heart disease -- coronary artery disease (CAD) in particular -- is substantially elevated.

Here is an article that describes the several ways in which diabetes predisposes to heart disease.

"Bendopnea" - A New Symptom of Heart Failure

Wednesday March 26, 2014

Recently, researchers from the University of Texas identified a new symptom of heart failure - shortness of breath while bending over, or "bendopnea."  The presence of bendopnea, they say, appears to indicate the presence of more advanced forms of heart failure.

Read more about bendopnea, and what it means.

Sleep Deprivation and Heart Disease

Sunday March 23, 2014

Several recent studies have made an association between chronic sleep deprivation (in general, getting fewer than five hours of sleep per night) and heart disease - or at least the risk factors for heart disease. And one study even suggests that getting too much sleep (greater than nine hours of sleep per night) is associated with heart disease.

So is there an "optimal" sleep duration window?

Read about sleep duration and heart disease here.

Orthostatic Hypotension

Friday March 21, 2014

In orthostatic hypotension, your blood pressure drops abnormally whenever you stand up. The drop in blood pressure can produce symptoms ranging from mild lightheadedness to loss of consciousness.

Orthostatic hypotension can occur in anyone, but is especially common older people. In fact, in the elderly it is a common cause of falls - and therefore of broken bones and head injury.  And the most common cause of orthostatic hypotension in older people is: prescription drugs.

Read about orthostatic hypotension and how it can be treated.

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