Navigation Links
Echocardiogram screenings are effective in preventing rheumatic heart disease

Washington, DCRoutine screening with echocardiogram can detect three times as many cases of rheumatic heart disease (RHD) as clinical examinations, offering a novel approach in preventing this common disease, according to a new study in Circulation. The study, conducted by cardiologists from Children's National Medical Center, is the largest single-population study in Africa. The August issue of Nature Reviews - Cardiology features a summary of the article in its Public Health feature.

The study screened nearly 5,000 school-aged children in Uganda and 130 had abnormal echocardiograms. After further evaluation at a hospital, 72 children were classified as having RHD, compared with just 23 children who met the diagnosis criteria for clinical evaluation. This represents a 400 percent increase in identification with an echocardiogram.

"What we found is that there were many children who had clinically silent RHD, which would have gone undetected without an echocardiogram," said Children's National's Andrea Beaton, MD, the lead author. "Echo screenings allow us to identify at-risk patients early, which in turn allows for early intervention to prevent more serious disease and complications."

The team performed upwards of 250 screenings daily, making echocardiograms an efficient and effective means for screening. The authors' recommendations include:

  • Focus screening on children 10 years old in lower socioeconomic groups, to maximize limited resources
  • Provide a two-staged approach to RHD detection (initial echo screening followed by comprehensive follow up)
  • Continue to support global efforts to treat subclinical RHD

RHD is the world's most common acquired cardiovascular disease, affecting approximately 15 million people, with a high incidence in developing countries. RHD is caused by repeated exposure to streptococcal bacteria, or strep throat, which is treated with antibiotics when easily accessible. Repeated exposure to strep can lead to RHD, which carries many risks, including death. By identifying signs of RHD early, children can receive readily available antibiotics to prevent serious harm.

"Our study supports the World Heart Federation's new guidelines for using echocardiograms to diagnose RHD, so our hope is that more countries will adopt system-wide screening programs for this preventable disease," said Craig Sable, MD, a pediatric cardiologist at Children's National and senior author of the paper.

Dr. Sable has been leading cardiac screening programs in Uganda for the past 13 years. He and a large team from Children's National have screened more than 1,000 children and coordinated the care for more than 150 children in the United States. Dr. Sable has also led six cardiac surgery missions to Uganda since 2007 and coordinated additional surgical trips by other teams; more than 150 children have undergone open heart surgery in Uganda.


Contact: Emily Dammeyer
Children's National Medical Center

Related medicine news :

1. Psychological Science explains uproar over prostate-cancer screenings
2. Doctors Urge Routine Skin Screenings
3. 2-1-1 could be effective tool in fighting cancer disparities
4. Personalizing biologic treatment to individual patients with rheuatoid arthritis is cost-effective
5. New Drug Effective for Rare Genetic Skin Cancer: Studies
6. New drug found effective against rare form of basal cell skin cancer
7. Kitchen exhaust fans vary in effectiveness in reducing indoor air pollution
8. Breast MRI helps predict chemotherapys effectiveness
9. Researchers make promising discovery in pursuit of effective lymphoma treatments
10. Breast cancer effectively treated with chemical found in celery, parsley by MU researchers
11. Mayo Clinic: Exhaustion renders immune cells less effective in cancer treatment
Post Your Comments:
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... June 26, 2016 , ... Pixel Film Studios Released ProSlice Levels, a ... can give their videos a whole new perspective by using the title layers ... Film Studios. , ProSlice Levels contains over 30 Different presets to choose from. ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... ... Austin residents seeking Mohs surgery services, can now turn to Dr. Jessica ... Peckham for medical and surgical dermatology. , Dr. Dorsey brings specialization to include Mohs ... Mohs Micrographic Surgery completed by Dr. Dorsey was under the direction of Glenn Goldstein, ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... 25, 2016 , ... Dr. Calvin Johnson has dedicated his ... implemented orthobiologic procedures as a method for treating his patients. The procedure is ... to perform the treatment. Orthobiologics are substances that orthopaedic surgeons use to help ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... , ... June 19, 2016 is World Sickle Cell Observance Day. In an ... of holistic treatments, Serenity Recovery Center of Marne, Michigan, has issued a ... Cell Disease (SCD) is a disorder of the red blood cells, which can cause ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Comfort Keepers® of San ... Society and the Road To Recovery® program to drive cancer patients to and from ... adults to ensure the highest quality of life and ongoing independence. Getting to ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016  Consumers have taken ... regulators/payers have placed more emphasis on patient outcomes. ... support programs in the pharmaceutical industry have evolved ... Consequently, pharmaceutical companies are focusing on becoming more ... providing products and services that improve health. ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... June 24, 2016 ... announced the addition of the " Global Markets ... This report focuses ... an updated review, including its applications in various applications. ... market, which includes three main industries: pharmaceutical and biotechnology, ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016  American Respiratory Labs (ARL), a ... now able to perform sophisticated lung assessments in patients, homes, thanks ... Inc. Patients are no longer limited to having ... PRO ® , ARL patients like Jeanne R. of ... the comfort of her own home. ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: