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The Evidence Speaks

The Evidence Speaks (February 2022)

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The Evidence Speaks Series is a recurring feature highlighting the latest in CHÉOS research. This series features summaries of select publications and is designed to keep media and the research community up to date with CHÉOS’ current research results in the health outcomes field. In recognition of Heart Month, this edition is focused on cardiology-related research.

To ensure this research is quick and easy to share, we are now providing social cards that you are free to save and use as you see fit. 

COVID-19 is associated with delayed care for patients with ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction

Malhi N, Moghaddam N, Hosseini F, Singer J, Lee T, Turgeon RD, Wong GC, Fordyce CB. Care and Outcomes of ST-Segment-Elevation Myocardial Infarction across multiple Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) waves. Can J Cardiol. 2022 Feb 10 epub ahead of print.

CHÉOS’ Drs. Joel Singer, Terry Lee, Ricky Turgeon, and Christopher Fordyce and fellow researchers examined whether the COVID-19 pandemic impacted care and outcomes of patients with ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI), a type of heart attack where a major artery is completely blocked. Comparing data from a STEMI database indicated that the incidence of STEMI was similar before and during the pandemic. However, the researchers determined that there was a significant delay in STEMI care for patients who presented during the pandemic when compared to before. It took longer for patients to progress from first medical contact (FMC) to STEMI diagnosis as well as FMC to reperfusion (treatment of the affected artery). In addition, delays worsened with each COVID-19 wave. This study highlights the need to adapt policy to address STEMI care gaps during COVID-19 case surges.

Out-of-hospital cardiac arrest patients are less likely to receive treatment if emergency medical services are delayed

Yap J, Haines M, Nowroozpoor A, Armour R, Luongo A, Sidhu G, Scheuermeyer F, Hutton J, Helmer J, Bolster J, Puyat J, Christenson J, Grunau B. Rationale for Withholding Professional Resuscitation in Emergency Medical System-attended Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest. Resuscitation. 2021 Dec 14 epub ahead of print.

CHÉOS’ Drs. Frank Scheuermeyer, Joseph Puyat, Jim Christenson, and Brian Grunau joined colleagues from the British Columbia Resuscitation Research Collaborative to investigate why treatment is withheld in some cases of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA). Reviewing 5,959 OHCA cases that were not treated by emergency medical services (EMS), the team determined that in over 80 per cent of cases, withholding treatment was due to a prolonged interval between OHCA and EMS arrival. Other reasons included do not resuscitate orders (16 per cent), terminal disease (1.3 per cent), and family directive (0.7 per cent). It was concluded that finding a way to reduce the time between OHCA and EMS arrival and assessment could increase the proportion of OHCA treated and improve outcomes.

People with substance use disorders are more likely to develop cardiovascular diseases

Gan WQ, Buxton JA, Scheuermeyer FX, Palis H, Zhao B, Desai R, Janjua NZ, Slaunwhite AK. Risk of cardiovascular diseases in relation to substance use disorders. Drug Alcohol Depend. 2021 Oct 27 epub ahead of print.

CHÉOS Program Head of Emergency Medicine Dr. Frank Scheuermeyer, Scientists Drs. Naveed Janjua and Amanda Slaunwhite (joined CHÉOS in February 2022), and team analyzed the associations between substance use disorders (SUD) and cardiovascular diseases (CVD). Analyzing data from 617,863 people over a four-year period, the researchers found that people with SUD were 1.7 times more likely to develop CVD than people without SUD. This association was more strongly pronounced among people who had opioid or stimulant use disorder. The study highlights that, while further research is required to understand precisely why this association exists, increased awareness around SUD and the risk of CVD is needed among both the community and health care providers.