Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Doctor Ira Breite's Sirius Doctor Radio Show for July 21, 2008

One of the better things about being involved with Dr. Radio is the chance to speak with some world class researchers on new and exciting things developing in the world of medicine. Transmitting this information to our audience is one of the things that makes me really excited to be part of this station on Sirius Satellite Radio. Leading off today's show, I had the privilege of interviewing Dr. Peter Martin, who is Professor of Psychiatry & Pharmacology; Director, Division of Addiction Medicine; Addiction Psychiatry Training Program and Vanderbilt Addiction Center at the Vanderbilt Psychiatric Hospital and also the Director of the Institute for Coffee Studies at Vanderbilt University. Dr. Martin and colleagues have just published a study looking at the use of coffee and cigarettes amongst members of Alcoholics Anonymous. We reviewed this study, and answered many questions about coffee. Bottom line seems to be to enjoy that cup (and avoid those cigarettes!)

Another hot issue in medicine nowadays is the concept of "pre-hypertension." This is blood pressure that is near the upper limit for normal. As people age, their blood pressure tends to increase. A big question is whether younger people with borderline normal blood pressures are more prone to heart disease. I spoke with Cora Lewis, MD, Professor, Division of Preventive Medicine, University of Alabama at Birmingham and the immediate past council chair, American Heart Association Council on Epidemiology & Prevention about a new study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine that she co-wrote. This study looked at coronary calcium scores of young people with pre-hypertension after 20 years. Patients with pre-hypertension were more likely to have higher coronary calcium scores. These scores have been associated with coronary artery disease.

After the break, we switched gears a little to bit to our elderly. I spoke with Dr. Lydia Rolita, a Geriatrician at the NYU-Langone School of Medicine & Bellevue Hospital about strategies for dealing with the care of the extreme elderly; we also answered many listener calls.

Finally we did our weekly "Ask Dr. Ira" segment, where I answered all of the listener's questions.

(the image, from Wikimedia.com, is a coffee bean)

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