Prevention of Coronary Heart Disease: Translating the Science into Practice Conference

Over 200 top health professionals from throughout the UK have been invited to hear more about the prevention of coronary heart disease, during a conference run by the University of Glasgow at the Hilton Hotel on Wednesday 29 March.

Coronary heart disease (CHD) is one of the largest causes of mortality in the UK, the numbers living with heart disease is around 2.6 million. Diet, smoking and lack of exercise have been recognised as serious health risks, and the development of the disease can be influenced by lifestyle changes.

The conference will focus on the latest evidence on a range of hot topics on the prevention of CHD and its practical application. Key experts who will address the audience include: Professor Tom Sanders, Professor of Nutrition and Dietetics, Kings College London who will speak on the affect of diet and cardiovascular disease.

The relationship between diet and cardiovascular disease is always of great interest to people. We need to consider the diet as a whole instead of solely focusing on individual nutrients as studies such as the recent omega 3 fats in relation to health are often contradictory. Professor Sanders explains: "Cardiovascular disease is a lifestyle disease related to poor diet, smoking and lack of physically activity. An integrated approach to modifying diet is needed to have the greatest impact rather than focusing on individual items of diet."

Gordon McInnes, Professor of Clinical Pharmacology, University of Glasgow and Honorary Consultant Physician, Western Infirmary, will provide the audience with an update on hypertension. He explains:

"Treatment of hypertension reduces CHD risk. The benefit is largely dependent on blood pressure reduction. However, recent evidence suggests that conventional drugs (beta-blockers and thiazides) may not be the most appropriate first-line treatment options. Therefore treatments are under review and the revised version is likely to recommend a more prominent role for newer drugs."

Professor Simon Capewell, Professor of Clinical Epidemiology at the University of Liverpool, will talk about his latest research work on CHD mortality. He comments: "Our research asked WHY have coronary heart disease death rates halved in the last two decades in Scotland and so many other industrialised countries?"

"We used a sophisticated computer model called IMPACT to examine trends in Scotland, England, Ireland, New Zealand, China, Finland and the USA. We found that improvements in major risk factors (smoking, total cholesterol and blood pressure) consistently explained 50%-75% of the mortality falls. Most importantly, we and others have shown that small reductions in specific risk factors could halve future CHD deaths in the UK. This would require further reductions in smoking, and government action to promote much healthier diets.'

Other speakers include:

*Dr John Foster, Senior Lecturer Mental Health And Alcohol Addiction, Department Of Health And Social Sciences, Middlesex University, on "Alcohol And CHD".

*Mr Len Almond, Foundation Director, BHF National Centre for Physical Activity & Health, Loughborough University, on "Increasing Physical Activity".

*Dr Eric Brunner, Reader in Epidemiology and Public Health, University College London and Dr Roberto De Vogli, Senior Research Fellow, University College London, on "CHD And Psychosocial Factors Work stress and CHD".

*Dr Stephen J Gallacher, Consultant Physician, Diabetes Centre, Southern General Hospital on "Update On Glitazones And Preventative Measures In CHD".

*Carol Carson, Community Diabetes Nurse Specialist, Diabetes Lead Dunfermline LHCC on diabetes.

Media Relations Office (media@gla.ac.uk)


For more information prior to the conference, please contact the University Media Relations Office on 0141 330-3535, or Carolyn Fraser (CPD Manager, Division of Developmental Medicine) on 0141 201-9264 or on the day on 079 6656 1474.

Conference will be held at the Hilton Hotel, 1 William Street, Glasgow in the ballroom, 0141 204 5555.

First published: 28 March 2006

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