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Bellinzona, Switzerland

Lekakis J.,National and Kapodistrian University of Athens | Abraham P.,University of Angers | Balbarini A.,University of Pisa | Blann A.,City University London | And 16 more authors.
European Journal of Cardiovascular Prevention and Rehabilitation

The endothelium holds a pivotal role in cardiovascular health and disease. Assessment of its function was until recently limited to experimental designs due to its location. The advent of novel techniques has facilitated testing on a more detailed basis, with focus on distinct pathways. This review presents available in-vivo and ex-vivo methods for evaluating endothelial function with special focus on more recent ones. The diagnostic modalities covered include assessment of epicardial and microvascular coronary endothelial function, local vasodilation by venous occlusion plethysmography and flow-mediated dilatation, arterial pulse wave analysis and pulse amplitude tonometry, microvascular blood flow by laser Doppler flowmetry, biochemical markers and bioassays, measurement of endothelial-derived microparticles and progenitor cells, and glycocalyx measurements. Insights and practical information on the theoretical basis, methodological aspects, and clinical application in various disease states are discussed. The ability of these methods to detect endothelial dysfunction before overt cardiovascular disease manifests make them attractive clinical tools for prevention and rehabilitation. © 2011 The European Society of Cardiology. Source

Di Valentino M.,Ospedale San Giovanni EOC | Muzzarelli S.,Fondazione Cardiocentro Ticino CCT | Limoni C.,Ospedale San Giovanni EOC | Porretta A.P.,Ospedale San Giovanni EOC | And 7 more authors.
European Journal of Public Health

Background: Second-hand smoke increases the risk of acute myocardial infarction. Canton Ticino (CT) first introduced a smoking ban in public places in 2007. This offered the opportunity to assess the long-term impact of a smoking ban on the incidence of ST-elevation myocardial infarctions (STEMI) compared with a population where the law was not yet implemented. Methods: We assessed the incidence of STEMI hospitalizations per 100 000 inhabitants both during 3 years before and after the ban application in CT and in Canton Basel City (CBC), where this law was not yet applied. Data were obtained from the codified hospital registry (ICD-10 codes). Results: In CT, the mean incidence of STEMI admissions during the 3 pre-ban years (123.7) was significantly higher than the incidence of admissions in each of the 3 post-ban years (92.9, 101.6 and 89.6 respectively; P <.024). Analysing population subsets, a post-ban reduction was observed among ≥65-year-old people of both sexes in each of the 3 post-ban years and in the <65-year age group during the first post-ban year (P = 0.02). Conversely, the mean incidence of STEMI hospitalizations in CBC (92.4) didn't change significantly in each of the 3 post-ban years (83.9, 83.3 and 79.5, P = NS) during the same period. However, a significant long-term reduction in STEMI admissions was observed in CBC among the male group with ≥65 years (P < 0.01). Conclusion: Our work suggests a significant impact of the smoke-free policy on the number of annual STEMI. Specific population subsets (i.e. ≥65-year-old females) were particularly affected by the smoking ban, showing a significant reduction in STEMI hospitalizations. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Public Health Association. All rights reserved. Source

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