New in brief: Australia’s top cardiology researcher for 2021; Takotsubo syndrome prognosis depends on trigger; Covid-19 revaccination after pericarditis;

Thursday, 18 Nov 2021

Australia’s top cardiology researcher for 2021

Professor Paul Bannon, head of Cardiothoracic Surgery at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney, has been named the top researcher in Australia in the field of cardiology by The Australian newspaper.

The newspaper says its rankings are based on the number of citations for papers published in the top 20 journals in his field, over the past five years.

Professor Bannon has an interest in translational research in the areas of congenital aortic and mitral valve disease, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, biomaterials and biocompatibility, limitation of blood product usage in cardiac surgery, the inflammatory response to bypass and the development of academic surgical careers. He is also Chair of the Baird Institute for applied heart and lung surgery research, where he oversees more than $500,000 worth of research funding annually and his Department currently runs 16 clinical trials amongst many other laboratory and clinically based projects.

Takotsubo syndrome prognosis depends on trigger

Prognosis for patients with Takotsubo syndrome triggered by an emotional stressor is excellent, whereas those with a physical stressor fare poorly, a New Zealand study shows

A review of 632 patients (96% women, mean age 65 years) with Takotsubo syndrome found that 27.4% had an associated acute physical stressor, 46.4% an emotional stressor and 26.2% no evident stressor.

While in-hospital mortality was similar for each group, the post-discharge mortality after a median 4.4 years was 4.5 times higher for patients with physical stress, similar to those with MI, compared to patients whose Takotsubo syndrome was associated with emotional stress or no stressor. Recurrence was similar among the three groups, according to findings reported by Dr Jen-Li Looi , a cardiologist at Middlemore Hospital, Auckland, in Heart Lung and Circulation.

Covid-19 revaccination after pericarditis

People who have pericarditis attributed to an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine can be revaccinated without the need for referral to a specialist immunisation service or cardiologist, according to advice from the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI),

According to advice updated in conjunction with the Cardiac Society of Australia and New Zealand (CSANZ), on 8 November, people who have had a diagnosis of pericarditis following an mRNA vaccine but who have normal investigations (i.e., ECG, echocardiogram, troponin and chest X-ray) can receive further doses after full recovery.

According to ATAGI, patients should be symptom free for at least six weeks, and the need and choice of further doses should be informed by investigation findings, age and sex.


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