Call for an appointment: (973) 586-3400
Cardiology Consultants of North Morris
356 US Highway 46
Mountain Lakes, NJ 07046
Tel: (973) 586-3400 * Fax: (973) 586-1916

Monday, December 26, 2011

OMG! CardiacConsult is now on Twitter!

If you understood that article title than this might be relevant to you. Otherwise, let me clarify for the less social media-inclined. is a service that allows you to tell your "followers" what you are doing, reading, liking, cringing at, in less than 140 characters.

All sorts are tweeting these days form the Queen of England to... your neighbor.

Our Twitter handle is @CardiacConsult, so meet us there to find out interesting health news and related items that may, or may not, suit your fancy. It's only about a sentence worth so how bad could it be? See you there...

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Would You Want to Read What Your Doctors Write?

Of course you would. And 95% of the patients surveyed agreed with you. And even stranger, so do most physicians. At least, that's what Tom Delbanco and his colleagues asserted in a questionnaire-based study using Open Notes, a system that allows patients to review all of the notes there docs are scribing.

View the abstract here from the Annals of Internal Medicine

But how much open-ness is too much? Will the doctors be reluctant to be blatantly honest in their assessment of patients if they know it will be read? And will patients fear being completely open when they know that their chart is more visible now - even if it's just to them?

Here's a quick article from the Atlantic on the topic.

Let's hear your comments...

Monday, December 12, 2011

Another Health App I Love

I have a feeling you're going to start to get sick of me posting about new health-related apps, but if you have an iPhone, iPod touch or iPad, this is just a wonderfully simple and effective device - and one that can be easily brought to the doc's office!

The iHealth Blood Pressure Dock is about as simple and straightforward as it gets. And at $99.95, it's not too pricey (only about $50 more than a typical digital cuff that you can buy at the pharmacy). There are 2 cuff sizes (standard and large) and they also have a scale available to record your daily weights.

Check it out here:

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Don’t Be a Holiday Heart Attack

Don’t Be a Holiday Heart Attack
We don't want to be too much of a downer but it's hard to argue with cold hard facts and unfortunately, the data shows that you are more likely to die of a myocardial infarction on Chritsmas or New Year's than on other days.

This does not mean you are more likely to have an MI, though. So why would people perish more often on these days? Are the docs and RNs frolicking in the ER? Unlikely. The most reasonable explanation is that people are relucttant to ruin their own good time (and embarassed to ruin other people's good time) by admitting that something may be seriously wrong. 

Waiting the additional 30 minutes to present to the ER may ruin the Holidays for years to come as delay in presentation is one of the leading causes of death, associated with a heart attack. The quicker you call 911, the sooner an ECG can be done and the sooner a diagnosis can be made. As we say in the cardiac cath lab, time is muscle.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Saddest Cities in America | Yahoo! Health

Saddest Cities in America | Yahoo! Health

You might think that lots of sun equals more happiness - but you would be wrong. An interesting article on which cities rank "saddest".

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Medicare Will Cover Obesity Education

Obama and Medicare have done good. For the most part.

The US government will now pay for a year's worth of obesity counseling for Medicare patients, putting an emphasis on lifestyle modification and education, knowing that in the long term, those who fare the best are the ones who have an understanding of the problem.

Tuesday, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced that it will cover obesity screening and counseling
as a preventive service under Medicare. The services will be free to beneficiaries; the Medicare deductible and copay will not apply.

Medicare patients are eligible for "intensive behavioral therapy for obesity" from primary-care providers—nonphysicians included—in a primary-care setting if their body-mass index (BMI) is >30 kg/m2. They are entitled to one face-to-face counseling visit each week for a month, followed by a face-to-face session every other week for an additional five months.

There's also an incentive built in, wherein if a patient loses more than 6.6 lbs over 6 months, they qualify for another 6 months of education - and those who do not? Prison. Nah, just a 6 month period of the patient's "readiness to change".

Specific items covered under the new law:
- an obesity screening,
- an assessment of the patient's diet, and
- behavioral counseling and therapy to promote sustained weight loss through diet and exercise.

This course of treatment does not include medications for losing weight. How much Medicare will actually pay out to the healthcare professionals educating has not been established.

See the official decision memo published online by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).