New Heart Attack Predicting Blood Test Developed
A blood test that can predict whether a person is at high risk of suffering from a heart attack has been developed by researchers at Scripps Translational Science Institute, and published in the journal Science Translational Medicine. The test can provide the doctor and patient with this vital information up to two weeks before an acute myocardial infarction (heart attack) is likely to occur. Team leader, cardiologist Eric Topol, explains that if this test is demonstrated to be reliable after further studies, doctors will be better equipped and informed to intervene with patients at very high risk of an imminent heart attack, and thus prevent the attack and the subsequent damage it can cause. The authors explain that acute myocardial infarction is currently highly unpredictable, despite recent progress in the diagnoses and treatments of coronary artery disease. They add that doctors desperately need a clinical measurement that can predict an impending heart attack. In this study, a blood test was devised that identifies specific cells that flake off when the blood vessel walls weaken – they are called CECs (circulating endothelial cells), and signal the initial stages of acute myocardial infarction.
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