Divorced people have more heart attacks
Divorce is not only difficult emotionally, but it can also have a physical impact. A new study published in the journal Circulation says the chronic stress related to divorce can have long-term effects on the body, including an increase in the risk of heart attacks.
Researchers from Duke University analyzed 15,827 people from 1992 and 2010. About one in three people had been divorced at least once. The findings showed women who were divorced had a 24 percent increased heart attack risk compared to women who had not been divorced. The risk jumped to 77 percent in women who underwent multiple divorces. For men, however, the heart attack risk was increased by 10 percent for the first divorce and 30 percent after multiple divorces. If people remarried, the risk in women improved only slightly but men were able to bounce back.
The researchers aren’t exactly sure why the divorce causes such a heightened increase in heart attack risk, except to assume that the stress and psychological impacts from divorce play a role in immune function as inflammation and stress hormones increase. More studies are needed to better understand the possible connection between heart attacks and divorce.
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Sourced from: bbc.com, Divorcees ‘have more heart attacks’
Published On: Apr 16th 2015
How Twitter predicts ER visits
Tweeting about your health may no longer be considered over-sharing. New research from the University of Arizona found that health-related tweets, particularly for asthma, may help hospitals predict emergency room visits.
A team of researchers developed a model to predict approximately how many asthma sufferers would visit the emergency room at a hospital in Dallas based on data from medical records, air quality sensors, and tweets.
For three months, researchers collected air quality data from environmental sensors in the Dallas hospital area and tweets containing the keywords “asthma,” wheezing,” and “inhaler” that were traced to ZIP codes where most of the hospital’s patients lived.
Their findings, which will be published in IEEE Journal of Biomedical and Health Informatics’, found that as certain air quality factors worsened around the Dallas hospital, asthma visits to the ER increased. Additionally, asthma-related tweets and Google searches went up. The researchers’ model was able to predict ER visits with 75 percent accuracy as to whether the ER would expect low, medium, or high volume of asthma-related visits on a given day.
These findings underline the important role of social media data as well as the importance of localized environmental data in successfully preparing hospitals to meet the needs of patients. For instance, hospitals usually look at a patient’s medical history to predict future visits, but environmental data could provide a deeper level of accuracy. Previous studies have indicated that Google searches and tweets could predict the spread of the flu and other contagious diseases.
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Sourced from: Science daily , How Twitter can help predict emergency room visits
Published On: Apr 16th 2015