medical research news

This week’s digest takes a look at women and their unique experience of heart attacks, the most common skin cancer among African Americans along with the association between e-cigarettes and poor health outcomes

Through Women's Experience

Women and Heart Attacks: We Know There Is a Difference

The clinical literature has demonstrated for quite some time  that heart attacks for women are different when compared to men.

How women experience and are treated for cardiac emergencies is particular to being female, yet when a woman with chest pain presents at the local emergency room, the care she receives is often standardized and not tailored for her. A recent Reuters article citing an article published on January 25, 2016, reminds us that cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death for women in the United States.

The significance of an article by Reuters to name one, points to the American Heart Associations public release stating that in fact heart attacks are different for women, how women experience and present their symptoms and even risk factors such as high blood pressure have an increased risk association specifically for women. The  AHA on messaging for the difference between the two genders and heart attacks will add to the awareness of the differences and lead to more specific care.

Change is happening and the overall burden of cardiac disease is decreasing for women but work needs to continue to ensure clinical practice guidelines for both emergency services and on-going care primary health care specifically take into consideration the differences between women and men regarding cardiovascular disease.

AHA Scientific Statement as reported by Circulation

Alternative Source, Heart Sisters


Melanoma Skin Cancer: Have You Ever Checked the Bottom of Your Feet?

Despite being a leading cause of death among all cancers, melanoma is often referred to as ‘just a skin cancer’. Thankfully it is true that many types of skin cancer are treatable and do not lead to the devastating outcomes of significant mortality and morbidity as seen in so many other forms of cancer. Also, it is true that when melanoma is caught early, the treatment and survival are very good.

It is also true that melanoma is the deadliest form of skin cancer and there are 4 specific types. This information update is focused on Acral lentiginous melanoma. This type of melanoma is found on the palms of the hands and the soles of our feet. It is most common to individuals with darker skin. Importantly, it is the most common form of skin cancer among African Americans.

Unfortunately, not a lot of people are aware of this type of cancer. It may be detected later and this could explain why acral lentiginous melanoma may also be more deadly. Dr. Stein in a recent article posted at recommends a total body exam for all types of skin cancer and a particular reminder to have our hands and feet included.


E-Cigarettes & Our Immune System

E-Cigarettes are gaining popularity and a consistent rate. Many users report that E-cigarettes have helped them reduce or eliminate their tobacco habits, which is a step in the right direction for health. 

However, Medical Research Today is reporting how important it is to understand we’re learning more about the link between E-cigarette use and the negative impact on lung tissue. Animal studies are also suggesting there may be an association between MRSA and E-cigarettes. Despite the reduction in reported tobacco use by many also using e-cigarettes, it is important to note that vaping certain chemicals is not without health risks.

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