Heart Disease Research
Research is being conducted to better understand the causes of heart disease at a cellular level. Hopefully, this research will lead to improved diagnosis, treatment, and prevention options. Other research involves studying heart disease risk factors and their impact on a person's chances of developing heart disease.
An Introduction to Research on Heart Disease
Doctors and scientists are hard at work conducting heart disease research. These studies are designed to answer important questions and to find out whether new approaches are safe and effective. Research has already led to many advances, and researchers continue to explore more effective methods for dealing with heart disease.
Current Areas of Focus in Heart Disease Research
The holy grail of medicine is a cure for heart disease. At this point, one does not exist. But research scientists are studying a number of different aspects of heart disease. Current areas of focus include:
- Understanding the cause of heart disease at a cellular level, with the hope that this will lead to improved diagnosis, treatment, and prevention methods.
- Studying heart disease risk factors, such as cholesterol, and their impact on a person's risk for developing heart disease. This includes what are considered "ideal" cholesterol levels based on other risk factors.
- Looking for other heart disease risk factors. One such possible risk factor for heart disease is called C-reactive protein, or CRP for short. CRP is a protein in the blood that shows the presence of inflammation. Inflammation is the body's response to injury.
Heart disease research scientists think that high levels of CRP may be a risk factor for heart disease (see CRP Test for Heart Disease).
- Developing improvements in treatments for heart disease, such as better ways of performing open heart surgery and angioplasty.
- Developing screening tools to help make an early heart disease diagnosis before symptoms occur.