About Cardiovascular Medicine

Challenges in cardiovascular medicine is to find a way of predicting the risk that an individual will suffer an acute thrombotic event. In last few decades, there has been a considerable interest in finding diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers that can be detected in blood. Of these, C-reactive protein is the best known. Others, such as the soluble CD40 ligand, can be used to predict cardiovascular events. At present, there are a number of high-performance techniques, such as proteomics, that have the ability to detect multiple potential biomarkers. In the near future, these approaches may lead to the discovery of new biomarkers that, when used with imaging techniques, could help improve our ability to predict the occurrence of acute vascular events.

Cell transplantation is currently gaining a growing interest as a potential means of improving the prognosis of patients with cardiac failure. The basic assumption is that left ventricular dysfunction is largely due to the loss of a critical number of cardiomyocytes and that it can be partly reversed by implantation of new contractile cells into the postinfarction scars. Bone marrow stem cells also generate a great deal of interest, particularly in patients with acute myocardial infarction, and are currently undergoing extensive clinical testing. While experimental studies and early-phase clinical trials tend to support the concept that cell therapy may enhance cardiac repair. However, adult stem cells (myogenic or marrow-derived) fail to electromechanically integrate within the recipient heart, thereby mandating the search for second generation cell types able to achieve this goal which is the prerequisite for an effective enhancement of contractile function.

There is widespread use of herbal medicine in patients suffering from cardiovascular diseases. The benefits of these drugs are still controversial because of the lack of scientific evidences. Plant products like Ginkgo biloba, Crataegus and Garlic are often recommended substances for patients with cardiovascular diseases.A lot of data is available on these from experimental and clinical studies, unfortunately not always adhering to the criteria of evidence based medicine.

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