Pedestrians and motorcyclists continue to be those most vulnerable in traffic accidents. A team of researchers has demonstrated an increase in the number of injuries among users of lightweight motorcycles after a law was passed in 2004 allowing the riding of motorbikes with a class B licence (for cars). In contrast, the study, focusing on Barcelona and published in the latest issue of the WHO Magazine, confirms that the risk of having an accident has remained unchanged.

A team of French scientists have found the dose of DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) that is "just right" for preventing cardiovascular disease in healthy men. In a research report appearing in the September 2009 print issue of The FASEB Journal (, the scientists show that a 200 mg dose of DHA per day is enough to affect biochemical markers that reliably predict cardiovascular problems, such as those related to aging, atherosclerosis, and diabetes.

Barcelona, Spain, 30 August: Diabetes mellitus-associated coronary artery disease (CAD) is assuming epidemic proportions, especially in western countries. Both coronary revascularization and medical management have improved tremendously over the last decade and the respective role in the diabetic population is not well defined. This aspect was investigated in the BARI 2D study*.

Barcelona, Spain, 30 August: Important new evidence about revascularization in patients with severe coronary artery disease can be found in the recently published interim analyses of the SYNTAX Trial of 1,800 patients with left main and/or three vessel coronary artery disease randomised to PCI or CABG.

Barcelona, Spain, 30 August: Several large observational data sets have convincingly shown that there is no overall safety issue with drug eluting stents (DES) vs. bare metal stents (BMS). In fact, most registry studies suggest a lower risk of death or myocardial infarction with drug eluting stents. However, late occurring stent thrombosis still remains higher and seems to be uniquely associated with these stents.

Barcelona, Spain, 30 August: Western societies are struggling to pay for their ever increasing medical budgets. In the US up to 393 billion US-$ were spent in 2005 for cardiovascular diseases alone. Based on epidemiologic studies in primary prevention it is reasonable to estimate that 30% of coronary heart disease and stroke could be prevented by 2.5 hours of brisk walking per week and approximately 284,886 cardiovascular deaths could be prevented per year in the US alone.

Barcelona, Spain, 31 August: Launched in 1999, the Global Registry of Acute Coronary Events (GRACE) is the world's largest international database tracking outcomes of patients presenting with acute coronary syndromes (ACS),including myocardial infarction or unstable angina. GRACE data are derived from 247 hospitals in North America, South America, Europe, Asia, Australia and New Zealand, and from more than 100,000 patients with ACS.

Barcelona, Spain, 31 August: The outcome of patients with acute myocardial infarction (AMI) complicated by cardiogenic shock* is generally very poor. Although early mechanical revascularisation by primary PCI has been shown as superior to medical treatment, the mortality range remains high (at about 45-60%). Registries have shown further therapeutic benefit from the administration of glycoprotein (GP) IIb/IIIa inhibitors** during PCI in AMI patients with cardiogenic shock. However, there are no randomised data to support this approach in these high risk patients.

Primary angioplasty may be more effective than thrombolysis in very elderly patients with AMI: results from the TRIANA trial

Barcelona, Spain, 31 August 2009: Primary angioplasty is superior to thrombolysis in the treatment of very old patients with acute myocardial infarction (AMI), according to results from the TRIANA (TRatamiento del Infarto Agudo de miocardio eN Ancianos*) study, a randomised trial sponsored by the Spanish Society of Cardiology.**

Barcelona, Spain, 31 August: Drug-eluting stents (DES), which slowly release medication to inhibit the build-up of scar tissue, have proved very successful in preventing restenosis (renarrowing) of stented coronary arteries. However, several studies have shown persistent risk of blood clot formation inside DES over a longer time period after implantation than observed with bare metal stents. Additionally, recent serial angiographic studies have reported that scar tissue accumulation can be seen up for up to two years after implantation of DES.