Cardiology Digest podcast: Episode #2

In this episode, we dive into the latest cardiovascular research into the perks of the Mediterranean diet, inequalities in atherosclerosis prevention, who benefits from cardiac resynchronization therapy, and the worsening of America’s heart health.

Franz Wiesbauer, MD MPH
Franz Wiesbauer, MD MPH
21st Dec 2023 • 2m read
The benefits of Mediterranean and low-fat diets
Low use of statins and disparities across races / ethnicities
Cardiac resynchronization therapy and triple therapy for atrial fibrillation patients
Worsening cardiovascular risk factors in young Americans

What are the latest cardiology studies?

Study #1

The Mediterranean diet can work wonders for your heart, and how a simple low-fat diet may offer similar benefits. Can both diets really reduce mortality in patients at increased risk? 

"Research shows that consuming a Mediterranean or low-fat diet can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease by up to 30%."

Karam, G, Agarwal, A, Sadeghirad, B, et al. 2023. Comparison of seven popular structured dietary programs and risk of mortality and major cardiovascular events in patients at increased cardiovascular risk: Systematic review and network meta-analysis. BMJ. 380: e072003. (

Study #2

Unravel the mystery behind the low statin use for primary prevention of ASCVD among all race and ethnicity groups, with Black and Hispanic adults being the least likely to receive them. Why is this happening, and what can we do about it? 

“These data highlight the ongoing disparities in ASCVD prevention and the need for healthcare providers to be aware of and address the underutilization of statins among those who may benefit the most."

Jacobs, JA, Addo, DK, Zheutlin, AR, et al. 2023. Prevalence of statin use for primary prevention of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease by race, ethnicity, and 10-year disease risk in the US: National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys, 2013 to March 2020. JAMA Cardiol. 5: 443–452. (

Study #3

A meta-analysis redefines which patients benefit from CRT and which don't. Brace yourself for some practice-changing revelations as we discuss LBBB, IVCD, and the magic number: 150 ms QRS duration. 

"Only those with QRS duration of equal to or greater than 150 milliseconds and either left bundle branch block or intraventricular conduction delay benefited from CRT, but not those with right bundle branch block."

Friedman, DJ, Al-Khatib, SM, Dalgaard, F, et al. 2023. Cardiac resynchronization therapy improves outcomes in patients with intraventricular conduction delay but not right bundle branch block: A patient-level meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Circulation. 10: 812–823.(

Study #4

Alarming decline in U.S. life expectancy, especially for young and middle-aged adults. Heart disease is on the rise, and it's high time we focus on preventing cardiovascular disease (CVD) early in life. 

"Prevalence of diabetes increased from 3% to 4.1%, while the percentage of young adults classed as obese rose from 32.7% to 40.9%."

Aggarwal, R, Yeh, RW, Maddox, KEJ, et al. 2023. Cardiovascular risk factor prevalence, treatment, and control in US adults aged 20 to 44 years, 2009 to Mar 2020. JAMA. 11: 899–909. (

Join us for this informative overview of contemporary research, as we break down complex medical concepts into digestible nuggets of knowledge, suitable for both medical students and healthcare professionals eager to keep up to date in cardiology.

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