Cardio Round-up: TAVR in Rural Areas; Smoking and COVID Risk; and More

Grilling and Heart Disease; Drinking and Hypertension; and More

Common CVD Risk Factor Also Linked with Increased COVID-19 Risk

According to the results of this study, individuals diagnosed with COVID-19 were five times more likely to have ever used cigarettes only, seven times more likely to have used both , and 6.8 times more likely to have used both within the past 30 days prior to COVID-19 diagnosis. They also reported that testing was nine times more likely to be done in those who used both cigarettes and e-cigarettes within the lat 30 days and 2.6 times more likely among those using only cigarettes within the last 30 days before diagnosis. Those who had used both up to 30 days out from the diagnosis were 4.7 times more likely to show COVID-19 symptoms.

E-Cigarette and Cigarette Use in Youth Linked With Heightened Risk for COVID

Is It Too Hard to Get TAVR in Rural Areas?

Evaluating data on time and distance to care centers, as well as demographic data, researchers for this study reported that those individuals in the lowest population density cohort saw longer driving distances and times to the care center, longer mean extra time, and these differences persisted regardless of methodology for determining population density. There was a seven-fold difference in utilization rates in the lowest-density vs. highest-density regions.

Challenges for TAVR in Low-Population Density Areas

Ibutilide Effective at Identifying Good PVI Candidates

This study, looking at the effectiveness of low-dose ibutilide at identifying patients with persistent atrial fibrillation who are a good candidate for success with pulmonary vein isolation (PVI). While pre-procedural ibutilide did not itself terminate arrhythmias, the combination of pulmonary vein isolation and ibutilide stopped AFib in 55 (30.6%) patients (PsAF group 1). For the remaining patients, electrogram-based ablation was performed (n=125; PsAF group 2). “The sequential low-dose ibutilide test is a simple method for identifying patients with persistent AFib in whom pulmonary vein isolation alone is an appropriate treatment strategy,” the authors wrote.

Low-dose Ibutilide Helps ID AFib Patients In Whom Pulmonary Vein Isolation Works

Sacubitril-Valsartan Combo vs. Enalapril: A Cost-Effectiveness Study

According to this paper, treatment for inpatients with sacubitril-valsartan ($5,628 per year) was linked with 62 fewer HF-related admissions per 1,000 patients versus outpatient initiation or 116 fewer HR-related admissions using enalapril. The authors noted that hospital initiation of sacubitril-valsartan on average saved $452 per year compared with enalapril, and saved $811 per year compared with initiation at two months after hospitalization. Sacubitril-valsartan was associated with a cost-effectiveness ratio of $21,532 per quality-adjusted life-year versus continued enalapril over a lifetime.

Is Sacubitril-Valsartan More Cost Effective than Enalapril for HFrEF?