Tag Archives: eecp

Your Heart: On Running

On this blog, we often talk about the benefits of exercising, and nothing gets your heart pumping quite like a good race. But the New York Times’ “Well Blog” recently posed an interesting question: is it possible to have too much of a good thing?

This post discusses a study of marathon runners and their spouses to see how prolonged training affects the heart. Scientists found that, although marathon runners generally had lower risk of heart attacks, running did not insulate them from heart disease entirely because factors other than exercise play a role in one’s heart health. Dr. Taylor, who led the study, said: “in essence, the scans showed that marathon training did not cancel out the depredations of age, longstanding bad health habits or a family history of cardiac problems.”

The study did, however, find that it likely isn’t the long hours of training that is putting a strain and creating damage to these racers’ hearts.

One other positive finding of this study is that prolonged exercise likely is not hurting one’s heart; rather, it is strengthening it. This is good news, but when exercising and committing to endurance sports, it is important to understand your family history, know previous health habits and monitor any potential signs of heart trouble (such as shortness of breath).

One of the other interesting findings is that endurance training’s cardiac benefits may actually be transferrable! The spouses of marathon runners were generally quite healthy and active, leading to lower risk of cardiac disease.

At Vasomedical, we’re proponents of exercising for your heart health, but always understanding your limits. Check with your physician before starting any exercise program. And, if you want to start exercising or want to be more active but the symptoms of angina and congestive heart failure are stopping you, ask your physician if EECP® Therapy might be a “bridge to exercise” for you.

Tell us: are you a marathon runner or a runner in general? What exercise do you work into your healthy lifestyle?

Click here for the whole New York Times piece. 

Tales from the Road: Thoughts After a Successful Show at the 2014 Arab Health Exhibition & Congress

We consider our exhibition at Arab Health last week to be one of our most successful tradeshows to date. This was largely accredited to our new Vasomedical exhibition booth and our strategic location at the show. The live demonstrations of EECP® Therapy generated large audiences and the booth’s visibility and new look were better at displaying our EECP Therapy and Biox patient monitoring products.

Attendees going to and from different exhibition halls, meetings and presentations stopped in our booth as they walked through the main concourse.  They wanted to know more about EECP® Therapy, the Biox ECG Holter and ambulatory blood pressure monitors, and our new wireless MobiCare® patient monitors. From the moment the exhibition halls opened to after the exhibit halls closed, our booth continued to stay busy.

At the show we spoke with an extensive number of physicians, distributors, hospital, and health ministry personnel from all of the countries in the Middle East and many different countries in Africa, as well as representatives from India during the four days of the exhibition.

Arab Health was a very successful meeting where we generated many leads, captivated lots of interest, and educated global medical industry leaders unfamiliar with EECP Therapy.  All the people we met in Dubai were warm and friendly and one gets the sense of being in a melting pot that is open to innovative medical technologies like EECP Therapy.

We look forward to working with many of the people we met at the show to bring our products to more patients in the Middle East region, Africa and Southeast Asia.

Spotlight: Healthcare Professional Doris Osborne Advocates for EECP® Therapy

We often hear stories about how EECP® therapy helped improve a patient’s quality of life, but today we want to share a slightly different story. We are excited to introduce you to Doris Osborne, who has been the EECP coordinator at The Christ Hospital Health Network for the past 15 years. Her proactive and innovative methods have significantly enhanced her ability to obtain more patient referrals for her center while also rejuvenating the programs for other practicing EECP professionals.

Osborne’s success started when she was invited to speak about EECP therapy at a meeting hosted by HealthCare Friends, an organization devoted to facilitating networking opportunities for health care professionals in the Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky areas. More than 100 representatives of senior facilities as well as healthcare professionals attended the meeting. After her presentation, Doris received interest from many attendees who asked her to come back and speak at their senior facilities. Through this event, her EECP program has received many new patient referrals as she successfully   spreads the word about the effectiveness of EECP Therapy.

Following the success of the meetings hosted by HealthCare Friends, Doris along with Dr. Charles Abbottsmith, the Medical Director of their EECP program, wanted to keep up the momentum and share her success so she organized a dinner meeting to share their experience and form a support group with other EECP professionals in her region. With the assistance of the International EECP Therapist Association (IETA), they invited program directors, managers and nurses from other EECP treatment centers around the southwestern Ohio area to a dinner meeting. Happy to participate were, Dawn Corbin from Kettering Hospital, Cherie Smith and Joan Rose from Premier Dayton Heart Center and Lisa Fent and Kathy Schmitt from Springfield Regional Medical Center.  Also in attendance were Marlene Snyder and Bill Seychell from Vasomedical. The attendees shared their personal experience, stories and knowledge about providing and using EECP therapy.

Doris clearly states “There are so many patients who need EECP therapy, yet they never hear about it and therefore are not getting the treatment they need. EECP therapy is the only noninvasive, non-pharmacological demonstrated to successfully treat patients with angina and heart failure as it promotes the growth of new collaterals and improves endothelial function”  continued, “My goal is to help facilitate and organize other meetings across the country. I hope through these meetings we will increase physician and patient awareness so that EECP Therapy becomes available to even more patients.”

We here at Vasomedical are inspired by Doris’ commitment and proactive activism in her advocacy for EECP Therapy. We hope other program directors, therapists, physicians and facilities around the country will follow her example!

Tell us: is there a healthcare professional in your community who is a provider and proponent of EECP Therapy you’d like to spotlight?  Email us at vaso@kcsa.com to submit!

Tales from the Road: Medica, Dusseldorf

After years of being told by the organizers of Medica Dusseldorf that there was no new booth space available for Vasomedical, last week we were finally able to participate as exhibitors in the largest medical industry fair in the world: Medica.

At the conference in Dusseldorf, Germany, we exhibited our EECP Therapy and Biox ECG Holter and ambulatory blood pressure monitoring products. In addition, this has been an excellent platform for the introduction of MobiCare™, our new innovative wireless patient monitors. We exhibited along with more than 4,500 medical industry companies, and showcased our products to more than100,000 visitors. Judging by the busy traffic in our booth, I am sure this year’s show broke all attendance records.

The response from attendees at Medica to our current products was excellent. We received visits from customers who use our products and distributors who sell our products. We’ve also received visits from customers and distributors who are currently, or have previously, used our competitor’s products – they heard about our products and wanted to see them first hand. Amongst all the visitors to our booth we saw both higher name recognition for Vasomedical EECP and Biox products, as well as an increased number of visitors who have put Vasomedical EECP and Biox products on their schedules for visits to our booth.

 

Many Hospitals Not Taking Steps to Reduce Readmissions

Under the provisions of the current Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), hospitals are being incentivized to reduce 30-day readmission rates. If a hospital is found by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to fall into the lowest quartile for high 30-day readmission rates for acute myocardial infarction (heart attack), congestive heart failure (CHF) or pneumonia, it will be penalized up to one percent of its Medicare payments.

However, in an article by Kim Carollo on the Cardiovascular Business web site, Ms. Corollo cites a research letter published online on Oct 21, 2013 in JAMA Internal Medicine stating that many hospitals have not taken the recommended steps to reduce their readmission rates.

To compound the matter, the PPACA program includes provisions to increase penalties to 2 percent in 2014 and to raise them to 3 percent in 2015. It is also likely that this PPACA program may be expanded in 2015 to include penalties for excessive coronary bypass surgery, percutaneous coronary interventions and vascular procedures which could put these hospitals in greater jeopardy of even more penalties.

Based upon scientific evidence published in peer reviewed clinical journals  Enhanced External Counterpulsation (EECP®) Therapy has demonstrated to significantly reduce re-hospitalizations and emergency room visits in Congestive Heart Failure patients. One can only hope that hospitals with EECP Therapy promote their programs and those that have not yet added the Therapy to the services they offer should seriously consider how much this treatment can do for them, their staff and most importantly, their patients.

Tales from the Road: Vasomedical Visits Amsterdam for ESC Conference

We just recently returned from the 2013 European Society of Cardiology Congress (ESC) which was held in Amsterdam, the Netherlands this year. It was an enjoyable and rewarding trip for many reasons.

First, the ESC issued new guidelines for the treatment of stable angina and assigned EECP® Therapy a lla Level of Recommendation with a B Level of Evidence. The inclusion of EECP Therapy in the guidelines provides not only recognition of the Therapy by the European cardiology community, but the recommendation that it should be considered when treating refractory angina patients.

This news brought many visitors to our exhibit booth. They came to see what the Therapy looked like in person and see exactly how it operated. We had a live model and our Clinical Manager, Bill Seychell, providing live demonstrations. Additionally, as the crowds grew in the aisles surrounding our booth, it presented a great opportunity for visitors to learn about the additional products we were displaying, including the Biox ECG Holter and ambulatory blood pressure monitoring and our EZ patient monitoring products line.

Additionally, the two abstracts presented on EECP Therapy – one by Eline Wu, RN from the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, the other by Dr. Vyacheslav Ryabov from Tomsk, Russia – were well received and motivated more visitors to visit our booth.

Amsterdam is a beautiful city and we were lucky to check out some of the great sites it has to offer, such as the National Museum, which had just returned to its newly renovated site.  We were able to get close and view the many famous paintings in its collection, including Rembrandt’s Night Watch.

One can go from one end of the spectrum to the other easily in Amsterdam – from the sobriety of Anne Frank’s House Museum to the fun and enjoyment of the Heineken Experience, Old Town streets, coffee houses, restaurants and shops. The beauty and uniqueness of the city is easily seen from a canal boat ride, a bicycle or a walk through the markets and squares. Just be careful not to get run over by the hundreds of cyclists who fill the bike lanes and speed down the sidewalks!