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1.  Advanced method used for hypertension’s risk factors stratification: support vector machines and gravitational search algorithm 
ARYA Atherosclerosis  2015;11(6):349-356.
The aim of this study is to present an objective method based on support vector machines (SVMs) and gravitational search algorithm (GSA) which is initially utilized for recognition the pattern among risk factors and hypertension (HTN) to stratify and analysis HTN’s risk factors in an Iranian urban population.
This community-based and cross-sectional research has been designed based on the probabilistic sample of residents of Isfahan, Iran, aged 19 years or over from 2001 to 2007. One of the household members was randomly selected from different age groups. Selected individuals were invited to a predefined health center to be educated on how to collect 24-hour urine sample as well as learning about topographic parameters and blood pressure measurement. The data from both the estimated and measured blood pressure [for both systolic blood pressure (SBP) and diastolic blood pressure (DBP)] demonstrated that optimized SVMs have a highest estimation potential.
This result was particularly more evident when SVMs performance is evaluated with regression and generalized linear modeling (GLM) as common methods. Blood pressure risk factors impact analysis shows that age has the highest impact level on SBP while it falls second on the impact level ranking on DBP. The results also showed that body mass index (BMI) falls first on the impact level ranking on DBP while have a lower impact on SBP.
Our analysis suggests that salt intake could efficiently influence both DBP and SBP with greater impact level on SBP. Therefore, controlling salt intake may lead to not only control of HTN but also its prevention.
PMCID: PMC4738045  PMID: 26862343
Support Vector Machines; Gravitational Search Algorithm; High Blood Pressure
2.  Surgical ablation for atrial fibrillation: an editorial 
Journal of Thoracic Disease  2015;7(8):E239-E242.
PMCID: PMC4561261  PMID: 26380788
3.  Effect of age on the phenotype of metabolic syndrome in developing country 
This study aimed to determine how age groups effect on the phenotype of metabolic syndrome (MetS) among Iranian population.
Materials and Methods:
This cross-sectional study was conducted as part of Isfahan Healthy Heart Program. Height, weight, waist circumference, and blood pressure were measured by trained health-care professionals. MetS was defined as having three or more of the National Cholesterol Education Program III criteria. The relation between different age groups and different phenotypes of MetS was examined using the multinomial logistic regression.
We found low high-density lipoprotein-cholesterol (HDL-c) was the most common feature, followed by hypertriglyceridemia (HTG), abdominal obesity (ABO), hypertension (HTN), and high fasting blood glucose in decreasing order of prevalence. The most prevalent combination of MetS components was hypertrigeceridemia, low HDL-c and ABO (50.7%) in all subjects and especially in younger age group (63.2%). In elder age group, the most prevalent three components combination was HTG, Low HDL-c and HTN (43.9%). Logistic regression analysis demonstrated that elder subjects were at approximately 12 times higher risk of having the combination HTG, ABO, low HDL-c, and HTN (P < 0.001) compared to the middle age subjects who had a lower risk for the same combination; (2 [1.49-3.49]) (P < 0.001).
This study provides a nationally representative estimate of the prevalence of different phenotypes of MetS across different age groups. Regarding different phenotypes of MetS in various age groups need to have important implications in the clinical management of these patients and the implementation of public health.
PMCID: PMC4513307  PMID: 26261805
Age groups; Iran; metabolic cardiovascular syndrome; phenotype
4.  The metabolic syndrome and associated lifestyle factors among the Iranian population 
This study aims to evaluate the impact of the Isfahan Healthy Heart Program (IHHP) interventions concerning healthy behavior, on the prevalence of the metabolic syndrome (MetS) and its components in the Iranian population.
Materials and Methods:
The IHHP targeted the population at large in three districts in central Iran from 2000 to 2007. Numerous interventional activities were performed to improve lifestyle. The main intervention strategies were public education through mass media, intersectional cooperation, health professional education, marketing and organizational development, legislation and policy development, as well as research and evaluation. MetS was defined based on the Adult Treatment Panel (ATP) III definition. The logistic regression method was applied to explore the relationship between lifestyle factors with components of metabolic risk factors.
The mean age of the participants was 44.68 ± 14.43 years in 2001. The mean values of the MetS components differed from 2001 to 2007. The mean of systolic blood pressure (SBP) decreased from 126.7 ± 22.31 to 124.21 ± 20.0 and from 129.47 ± 23.08 to 126.26 ± 21.88 among females in both the intervention and reference areas. Similar changes were observed among males. The mean diastolic blood pressure (DBP) and triglycerides decreased significantly in the intervention area and increased significantly in the reference area in both sexes. High density protein cholesterol (HDL-C) was decreased in both sexes, from 2001 to 2007, in both areas. A strong relationship between tobacco control with high SBP and hypertriglyceridemia was found (P < 0.01).
Lifestyle improvement programs could be useful to improve the MetS status among men and women.
PMCID: PMC4434446  PMID: 26015910
Iranian adults; lifestyle modification; metabolic syndrome
5.  Are there any differences in education levels and changes of cardiovascular risk factors among urban and rural population: Isfahan Healthy Heart Program 
This study aimed to find the influence of education level on the trends of changes of these risk factors among a great sample of Iranian population.
Materials and Methods:
This cross-sectional study is a secondary analysis of Isfahan Healthy Heart Program (IHHP). Blood samples were taken to determine the lipid levels including total cholesterol (TC), low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C), low levels of high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C), and triglycerides. Education categorized based on training system in Iran as 1-5, 6-12, and more than 12 years training.
The prevalence of diabetes was higher among illiterate participants in both areas. Hypertension was more prevalent in illiterate subjects (2001; 44.0% and 2007; 46.3%) in intervention area (P < 0.001). Dyslipidemia was more prevalent among illiterate people (P < 0.001). In the intervention, illiterates have higher BMI in both 2001 and 2007 (P < 0.001). The prevalence of current smoking was the highest in education level range 6 to 12 years and was steadily decreased in higher education levels (P < 0.001). Subjects with 6-12 years of education have more unhealthy nutritional habits in both areas. In 2001, subjects with 12 years of education or more had more physical activity than other groups (P < 0.001), whereas, in 2007, subjects with 6-12 years of education were more active (P < 0.001).
Although the prevalence of diabetes, hypertension obesity, and dyslipidemia are more in illiterate subjects and prevalence of diabetes and hyperlipidemia was sharply decreased with education level, it seems that well educated participants have higher daily physically activity compared with those who have lower education without considering the place or residency.
PMCID: PMC4392543  PMID: 25883994
Cardiovascular risk factors; education; Iran; rural; urban
6.  Clinical Determinants of Left Ventricular Ejection Fraction Deterioration in Patients Suffered From Complete Left Bundle Branch Block 
Recently, the deleterious effects of left bundle branch block (LBBB) on left ventricular systolic function have been taken into consideration.
The present study aimed to identify underlying factors that predict left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) deterioration in patients suffered from complete LBBB.
Patients and Methods:
In a retrospective case-control study, the data of 220 consecutive patients diagnosed with LBBB on their electrocardiograms were assessed. They were referred to Isfahan Heart Center in Isfahan Province, Iran in 2013. LVEF deterioration was defined as a decrease in LVEF at least 10% between the baseline and follow-up echocardiography study. Thus, achieving the LVEF values ≤ 40% in patients with an initial EF of > 50% was considered LVEF deterioration.
Among 220 patients, 40% of LBBB patients suffered LVEF deterioration within 3 months of initial assessment. The group with LVEF deterioration had higher male to female ratio, had higher NYHA score, and suffered more from systolic hypertension than another group. Those with coronary artery disease (CAD) had also significantly lower LVEF than non-CAD ones. Adverse associations were revealed between systolic blood pressure and LVEF measurement (r = -0.193, P = 0.006) as well as between NYHA score and LVEF (r = -0.215, P = 0.002). A multivariable logistic regression model showed that among baseline variables, male gender (OR = 3.218, P < 0.001), history of systolic hypertension (OR = 2.012, P = 0.029), higher NYHA score (OR = 1.623, P = 0.005), and the presence of coronary artery disease (OR = 2.475, P = 0.028) could effectively predict LVEF deterioration in patients with LBBB.
Male gender, history of hypertension, high NYHA score, and the presence of CAD predict LVEF deterioration in patients with LBBB.
PMCID: PMC4376987  PMID: 25838930
Bundle-Branch Block; Coronary Artery; Left Ventricular; Ejection Fraction
7.  Association between dietary salt intake and reservation of renal function in patients with mild hypertension 
ARYA Atherosclerosis  2015;11(Suppl 1):69-73.
It is now hypothesized whether restricted salt intake can be a potential precursor to renal dysfunction in mild hypertension state. We aimed to study the association between salt intake and renal function in patients with mild hypertension.
One hundred consecutive hypertensive Iranian patients (with systolic blood pressure 140-160 mmHg and/or diastolic 90-100 mmHg) who were referred to the hypertension research center, Isfahan, Iran, between 2011 and 2014 for screening of hypertension were assessed. Renal function was assessed by measuring serum creatinine (Cr) and creatinine clearance (CrCl). Daily salt intake was assessed on the basis of 24 h urinary sodium excretion.
There was no association between the amounts of sodium intake and serum Cr concentration (r = 0.138, P = 0.174), however, an association was revealed between sodium intake and value of CrCl (r = 0.303, P = 0.003). Multivariable linear regression model showed that sodium intake could effectively predict renal function assessed by CrCl (Beta = 0.070, P = 0.016).
There is an association between sodium intake and reservation of renal function in mild hypertension state and thus by restriction of dietary salt intake, reserving renal function, and preventing appearance and progression of renal insufficiency in higher degrees of hypertension can be facilitated.
PMCID: PMC4530658  PMID: 26261452
Dietary; Salt Intake; Renal Function; Mild Hypertension
8.  Perspective on the hospital incidence rate of deep venous coagulopathy: Clinical and biochemical diagnostic markers 
Identifying factors contributing to the increased risk of deep venous thrombosis (DVT) in each population is vital, because of its life-threatening outcome. The current study aims to find the diagnostic performance of some laboratory coagulation markers for predicting DVT in an Iranian population complaining of DVT in the lower limbs.
Patients and Methods:
For this study, 66 consecutive patients with documented DVT, admitted to the Al-Zahra Hospital in Isfahan for the first time, were considered as the case group and 33 patients without DVT documentations were included as the control group. DVT was considered when there was visualization of thrombus or non-compressibility of the vein, confirmed by bilateral lower extremity compression Doppler ultrasonographic examination. Homocysteine, antiphospholipid, and anticardiolipin antibodies were measured in both groups by using sensitive ELISA kits. Protein C was measured via a functional clotting method, and prothrombin was measured by a kinetic, enzymatic assay.
Multivariable analysis showed that the serum homocysteine levels was potentially associated with the presence of DVT after adjusting for age and gender (OR: 1.038, 95% CI: 1.007-1.070, P = 0.017). Comparison of the C statistic showed a partially good discrimination of homocysteine for DVT, with the area under the receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve being 0.614 and with the optimal cut-off value of 16.5 micromol/L (μmol/L) for men and 14.5 μmol/L for women.
Hyperhomocysteinemia could be considered as an independent risk factor for DVT, with an actual acceptable prognostic value, in the Iran population.
PMCID: PMC4283241  PMID: 25590032
Biochemical diagnostic; deep venous coagulopathy; incidence
9.  Dabigatran versus Enoxaparin in the prevention of venous thromboembolism after total knee arthroplasty: A randomized clinical trial 
ARYA Atherosclerosis  2014;10(6):292-297.
Venous thromboembolism (VTE) and deep vein thrombophlebitis (DVT) is a serious problem with high mortality and morbidity rates. This study was conducted to compare efficacy and safety results of the two types of VTE preventing in patients underwent total knee arthroplasty (TKA).
Having considered exclusion criteria, 90 patients of 136 ones were registered in the study. Our patients of TKA were split randomly in two groups. Totally, 45 patients received enoxaparin, 40 mg 12 h before surgery and treated by 40 mg daily up to 15 days. The second group (45 patients) were treated by dabigatran 150 mg 4 h after surgery and 225 mg daily up to 15 days. Efficacy was evaluated by Doppler sonography after 15 days for the presence of DVT and safety was determined by 3 months follow-up for all-cause mortality and any major or minor bleedings.
Two groups were similar in baseline characteristics. The efficacy outcome events occurred in 2.2% (2 of 90) of the patients (1 symptomatic VTE in dabigatran and 1 in the enoxaparin group) without significant statistical difference between groups (P = 0.64). In terms of safety, 3 patients (6.6%) in dabigatran and 2 patients (4.4%) in enoxaparin group had major bleeding (P = 0.66) and 8 patients (17.7%) in dabigatran and 7 patients (15.7%) in enoxaparin group had non-major bleeding event (P = 0.81). There were no death, pulmonary emboli, and cardiac events during follow-up.
Three months follow-up did not show statistical difference in efficacy and safety between dabigatran and enoxaparin. Future studies with mentioning to later outcomes for checking safety are warranted.
PMCID: PMC4354081  PMID: 25815018
Dabigatran; Prevention; Venous Thromboembolism; Enoxaparin; Total Knee Replacement
10.  Evaluating factors associated with uncontrolled hypertension: Isfahan cohort study, Iran 
ARYA Atherosclerosis  2014;10(6):311-318.
Hypertension (HTN) considers as one of the most common risk factors, which potentially raises the risk of cardiovascular disease. Regarding high prevalence of HTN among Iranian population this study designed to examine a range of socio-demographic and clinical variables to determine the association with failure to achieve blood pressure control in a cohort of hypertensive subjects.
This retrospective cohort study is a part of Isfahan cohort study which carried out on adults aged 35 years old or more. Subjects with confirmed HTN entered in this sub-study. For all subjects questionnaire included socio-demographic characteristics, clinical data and lifestyle behavior completed by trained nurses. Uncontrolled HTN was defined as systolic and diastolic blood pressure more than 140/90 in the presence or absent of pharmacological treatment.
The prevalence of uncontrolled men was significantly higher than controlled in both 2001 and 2007 (P < 0.001). A significant association was found between sex and control of blood pressure: compared with women, being men [odds ratio (OR) = 2.31; 95 % confidence interval (CI) = 1.64-3.24] was significantly associated with uncontrolled HTN in 2001 and (OR = 2.38; 95% CI = 1.78-3.18). Among lifestyle behaviors, tendency for more consumption of salty foods increased the risk of uncontrolled HTN in 2001 by 1.73 times [OR = 1.73, 95% CI = 1.20-2.50, (P = 0.003)]. Patients who were naive to mono-therapy without considering the type of antihypertensive drug were found to be associated with uncontrolled blood pressure (OR = 0.14; 95 % CI =0.1-0.2).
Uncontrolled HTN was sex, marital status, diabetes, tendency to salty foods and medication adherence. Assessment of them presence of these risk factors is warranted to recommend an aggressive HTN management with the goal of reducing excessive risk of cardiovascular events caused by uncontrolled HTN.
PMCID: PMC4354084  PMID: 25815021
Prevalence; Hypertension; Uncontrolled; Risk Factors
11.  Carotid intima-media thickness and plasma fibrinogen among subjects with metabolic syndrome: Isfahan cohort study, Iran 
ARYA Atherosclerosis  2014;10(5):238-243.
The role of plasma fibrinogen, a key regulator of inflammation processes and increased carotid intima-media thickness (cIMT) to predict metabolic syndrome (MetS) is currently under investigation. We assessed differences in the indicators of cIMT and also plasma fibrinogen level between MetS and non-MetS subjects. We also assessed the role of these two parameters for independently relationship with MetS state.
The subjects in this cross-sectional survey were population-based samples of 93 men and women aged ≥ 35 years and over who were selected from the Isfahan cohort study, Isfahan, Iran. Fibrinogen was measured by the clotting assay of Clauss. Ultrasound studies of the carotid artery were performed to measure cIMT. MetS defined based on the National Cholesterol Education Program’s Adult Treatment Panel III.
The mean level of plasma fibrinogen was not different in the two groups with and without MetS (240.10 ± 27.80 vs. 242.56 ± 35.82, P = 0.714), but the mean of cIMT was considerably higher in MetS group than in non-MetS group (0.85 ± 0.06 mm vs. 0.66 ± 0.09 mm, P < 0.001). Using a multivariable logistic regression model, high cIMT could effectively predict MetS state with the presence of different components of MetS (odds ratio = 17.544, 95% confidence interval = 2.151-142.860, P = 0.008). The optimal cutoff point of cIMT for discriminating these two clinical states was 0.6 mm yielding a sensitivity of 61.5% and a specificity of 59.6%.
Individuals with MetS demonstrated increased cIMT values compared with those without MetS. However, high plasma fibrinogen level may not be associated with MetS state.
PMCID: PMC4251483  PMID: 25477980
Metabolic Syndrome; Carotid Intima-Media Thickness; Fibrinogen; Prediction
12.  The Effects of Vitamin E and Omega-3 PUFAs on Endothelial Function among Adolescents with Metabolic Syndrome 
BioMed Research International  2014;2014:906019.
Aim. The present study aims to explore the effects of vitamin E and omega-3 on endothelial function indicators among adolescents with metabolic syndrome. Method. In a randomized, double blind, and placebo-controlled trial, 90 young individuals, aged 10 to 18 years, with metabolic syndrome were randomly assigned to receive either vitamin E tablets (400 IU/day) or omega-3 tablets (2.4 gr/day) or placebo. For assessing endothelial functional state, the serum level of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) was measured by ELISA test. Results. The use of omega-3 supplementation for eight weeks led to significant increase in serum HDL level compared with the group treated with vitamin E or placebo group. In this regard, no significant correlations were found between the change in VEGF and baseline levels of other markers including anthropometric indices and serum lipids. Omega-3 could significantly reduce VEGF with the presence of other baseline variables (Beta = −12.55; P = 0.012). Conclusion. The administration of omega-3 can effectively improve endothelial function in adolescents with metabolic syndrome by reducing the level of serum VEGF, as a major index for atherosclerosis progression and endothelial destabilization. Omega-3 can be proposed as a VEGF antagonist for improving endothelial function in metabolic syndrome. The clinical implications of our findings should be assessed in future studies.
PMCID: PMC4127288  PMID: 25136638
13.  Beneficial Effects of Testosterone Therapy on Functional Capacity, Cardiovascular Parameters, and Quality of Life in Patients with Congestive Heart Failure 
BioMed Research International  2014;2014:392432.
Background. According to the present evidences suggesting association between low testosterone level and prediction of reduced exercise capacity as well as poor clinical outcome in patients with heart failure, we sought to determine if testosterone therapy improves clinical and cardiovascular conditions as well as quality of life status in patients with stable chronic heart failure. Methods. A total of 50 male patients who suffered from congestive heart failure were recruited in a double-blind, placebo-controlled trial and randomized to receive an intramuscular (gluteal) long-acting androgen injection (1 mL of testosterone enanthate 250 mg/mL) once every four weeks for 12 weeks or receive intramuscular injections of saline (1 mL of 0.9% wt/vol NaCl) with the same protocol. Results. The changes in body weight, hemodynamic parameters, and left ventricular dimensional echocardiographic indices were all comparable between the two groups. Regarding changes in diastolic functional state and using Tei index, this parameter was significantly improved. Unlike the group received placebo, those who received testosterone had a significant increasing trend in 6-walk mean distance (6MWD) parameter within the study period (P = 0.019). The discrepancy in the trends of changes in 6MWD between study groups remained significant after adjusting baseline variables (mean square = 243.262, F index = 4.402, and P = 0.045). Conclusion. Our study strengthens insights into the beneficial role of testosterone in improvement of functional capacity and quality of life in heart failure patients.
PMCID: PMC4109421  PMID: 25110677
14.  Association between adolescence obesity and metabolic syndrome: Evidence from Isfahan Healthy Heart Program 
Metabolic syndrome (MetS) is more prevalent among Iranian adolescences. This study aimed to find the relationship between obesity and MetS among different education grades of Iranian adolescence.
Materials and Methods:
Overall, 1039 junior high school and 953 high school students were selected using multistage random sampling. Fasting blood sugar, total cholesterol, triglyceride (TG), and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL) were measured. Trained individuals measured waist circumference and blood pressure. MetS was defined according to the De Ferranti definition.
The prevalence of overweight and obesity was 12.6% and 6.2% in junior and 11.5% and 4.3% in high school students, respectively. Obese subjects in both grades have higher waist circumference, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, and triglyceride than comparable groups. Multiple logistic regression models showed that overweight and obesity were strongly associated with MetS components analyzed. Compared to normal-weight children, overweight and obese in junior high school students were 1.47 and 2.23 times more likely to be having high TG, respectively, whereas overweight and obese in high school-students were also more likely to have elevated TG [ORs 1.94 (1.28-2.94), 4.96 (2.39-10.3) respectively].
Obese children have the highest prevalence of MetS. Prevalence of MetS-related components has reached high level among Iranian adolescences that were overweight or obese.
PMCID: PMC4138918  PMID: 25143919
Adolescence; metabolic syndrome; obesity
15.  Cheese consumption in relation to cardiovascular risk factors among Iranian adults- IHHP Study 
Nutrition Research and Practice  2014;8(3):336-341.
It is expected that dairy products such as cheeses, which are the main source of cholesterol and saturated fat, may lead to the development or increase the risk of cardiovascular and metabolic diseases; however, the results of different studies are inconsistent. This study was conducted to assess the association between cheese consumption and cardiovascular risk factors in an Iranian adult population.
Information from the Isfahan Healthy Heart Program (IHHP) was used for this cross-sectional study with a total of 1,752 participants (782 men and 970 women). Weight, height, waist and hip circumference measurement, as well as fasting blood samples were gathered and biochemical assessments were done. To evaluate the dietary intakes of participants a validated food frequency questionnaire, consists of 49 items, was completed by expert technicians. Consumption of cheese was classified as less than 7 times per week and 7-14 times per week.
Higher consumption of cheese was associated with higher C-Reactive Protein (CRP), apolipoprotein A and high density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) level but not with fasting blood sugar (FBS), total cholesterol, low density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C), triglyceride (TG) and apolipoprotein B. Higher consumption of cheese was positively associated with consumption of liquid and solid oil, grain, pulses, fruit, vegetable, meat and dairy, and negatively associated with Global Dietary Index. After control for other potential confounders the association between cheese intake and metabolic syndrome (OR: 0.81; 96%CI: 0.71-0.94), low HDL-C level (OR: 0.87; 96%CI: 0.79-0.96) and dyslipidemia (OR: 0.88; 96%CI: 0.79-0.98) became negatively significant.
This study found an inverse association between the frequency of cheese intake and cardiovascular risk factors; however, further prospective studies are required to confirm the present results and to illustrate its mechanisms.
PMCID: PMC4058569  PMID: 24944780
Cheese consumption; cardiovascular risk factors; food frequency questionnaire
16.  The Cut-Off Values of Anthropometric Indices for Identifying Subjects at Risk for Metabolic Syndrome in Iranian Elderly Men 
Journal of Obesity  2014;2014:907149.
Aim. This study aimed to investigate which anthropometric indices could be a better predictor of metabolic syndrome (MetS) and the cut-off points for these surrogates to appropriately differentiate MetS in the Iranian elderly. Method. The present cross-sectional study was conducted on a sample of Isfahan Healthy Heart Program (IHHP). MetS was defined according to Third Adult Treatment Panel (ATPIII). In total, 206 elderly subjects with MetS criteria were selected. Anthropometric indices were measured and plotted using receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves. Results. WC followed by WHtR yielded the highest area under the curve (AUC) (0.683; 95% CI 0.606–0.761 and 0.680; 95% CI 0.602–0.758, resp.) for MetS. WC at a cut of 94.5 cm resulted in the highest Youden index with sensitivity 64% and 68% specificity to predict the presence of ≥2 metabolic risk factors. BMI had the lowest sensitivity and specificity for MetS and MetS components. WC has the best ability to detect MetS which followed by WHtR and BMI had a lower discriminating value comparatively. Conclusion. WC is the best predictor for predicting the presence of ≥2 metabolic risk factors among Iranian elderly population and the best value of WC is 94.5 cm. This cut-off values of WC should be advocated and used in Iranian men until larger cross-sectional studies show different results.
PMCID: PMC3981184  PMID: 24782923
17.  Comparing clinical efficacy of Symbicort versus Pulmicort in reducing asthma symptom and improving its control 
Recently, higher efficacy of the combination of long-acting beta2-adrenoceptor agonist and inhaled corticosteroids on controlling asthma symptoms has been hypothesized. This study aimed to examine the clinical effects of the combination of Budesonide with formoterol (Symbicort) and Budesonide (Pulmicort) alone in persistent asthma.
Materials and Methods:
In a randomized double-blinded clinical trial, 76 patients with definite diagnosis of moderate-to-severe asthma were randomized to receive Pulmicort 180 mcg/inhalation two puffs twice daily, or receive Symbicort 80/4.5 mg/inhalation two puffs twice daily, or receive Symbicort 160/4.5 mg/inhalation two puffs twice daily for 3 months. All participants were initially evaluated by spirometry for assessing respiratory parameters and also the level of asthma control was assessed by Asthma Control Test (ACT).
More significant improvement in spirometry parameters, including forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEV1), forced vital capacity (FVC), FEV1/FVC ratio, as well as in peak expiratory flow (PEF) in both groups of Symbicort with the regimens 80/4.5 mg/inhalation or 160/4.5 mg/inhalation 2 puffs twice daily compared with Pulmicort group, ACT score was significantly improved in Symbicort group with the regimens 160/4.5 mg/inhalation compared with both Symbicort groups with lower dosage and Pulmicort group. Response to treatment in PEF parameter and also in ACT level was significantly more in those who received Symbicort with the regimens 160/4.5 mg/inhalation compared with other two interventional groups adjusted for gender and age.
Symbicort with the regimens 160/4.5 mg/inhalation has higher efficacy in reducing asthma symptom and improving its control compared with low doses of this drug and with Pulmicort.
PMCID: PMC3988601  PMID: 24761394
Asthma symptom; symbicort; pulmicort
18.  Effects of Ferulago angulata Extract on Serum Lipids and Lipid Peroxidation 
Background. Nowadays, herbs they are considered to be the main source of effective drugs for lowering serum lipids and lipid peroxidation. The present experimental animal study aimed to assess the impact of Ferulago angulata on serum lipid profiles, and on levels of lipid peroxidation. Methods. Fifty male Wistar rats, weighing 250–300 g, were randomly divided into five equal groups (ten rats in each). The rat groups received different diets as follows: Group I: fat-rich diet; Group II: fat-rich diet plus hydroalcoholic extracts of Ferulago angulata at a dose of 400 mg/kg; Group III: fat-rich diet plus hydroalcoholic extracts of Ferulago angulata at a dose of 600 mg/kg; Group IV: fat-rich diet plus atorvastatin; Group V: common stock diet. The levels of serum glucose and lipids and the atherogenic index were measured. In addition, malondialdehyde (MDA), thiol oxidation, carbonyl concentrations, C-reactive proteins, and antioxidant capacity were evaluated in each group of rats. Results. Interestingly, by adding a hydroalcoholic extract of Ferulago angulata to the high-fat diet, the levels of total cholesterol and low-density lipoproteins (LDL) in the high-fat diet rats were both significantly reduced. This result was considerably greater compared to when atorvastatin was added as an antilipid drug. The beneficial effects of the Ferulago angulata extract on lowering the level of triglycerides was observed only when a high dosage of this plant extraction was added to a high fat diet. Furthermore, the level of malondialdehyde, was significantly affected by the use of the plant extract in a high-fat diet, compared with a normal regimen or high-fat diet alone. Conclusion. Administration of a hydroalcoholic extract of Ferulago angulata can reduce serum levels of total cholesterol, triglycerides, and LDL. It can also inhibit lipid peroxidation.
PMCID: PMC3953577  PMID: 24707310
19.  Contrast-induced nephropathy; A literature review 
Journal of Nephropathology  2014;3(2):51-56.
Context: Contrast-induced nephropathy (CIN) is a common cause of acute kidney dysfunction.
Evidence Acquisitions: Directory of Open Access Journals, Google Scholar, PubMed, EBSCO and Web of Science have been searched.
Results: It is necessary to identify at risk patients at early stages to implement preventive strategies to decrease the incidence of this nephropathy. However, mechanisms of CIN have not fully explained yet. It seems that mechanisms which mediated by nitric oxide and prostaglandin-induced vasodilatation have been played a crucial role in the CIN. Hemodynamic changes of renal blood flow, which causes hypoxia in the renal medulla and direct toxic effects of contrast media on renal cells, are thought to contribute to the pathogenesis of CIN. Contrast media is normally divided into iso-osmolar, low-osmolar, and high-osmolar. N-acetylcysteine is considered as one of the best choices to prevent CIN in high-risk groups.
Conclusions: The first aim to prevent CIN is identifying high-risk subjects and controlling associate risk factors. As significant differences existed between contrasts agents due to their physicochemical properties, low-osmolar or iso-osmolar contrast media should be used to prevent CIN in at-risk patients. The volume of contrast media should be as low as possible.
PMCID: PMC3999584  PMID: 24772397
Contrast-induced nephropathy; Contrast media; Percutaneous coronary intervention
20.  Relationship between legumes consumption and metabolic syndrome: Findings of the Isfahan Healthy Heart Program 
ARYA Atherosclerosis  2014;10(1):18-24.
Epidemiologic studies have shown an inverse association between dietary fiber and metabolic syndrome (MetS). Therefore, the purpose of this study was to investigate the association between MetS and consumption of legumes in adults in Isfahan, Iran.
This cross-sectional study was carried out on 2027 individuals who were a subsample of the 3rd phase of the Isfahan Healthy Heart Program (IHHP). Basic characteristics information such as age, sex, smoking status, and physical activity were collected using a questionnaire. A validated 48-item food frequency questionnaire was used to assess dietary behaviors. Blood pressure, waist circumference (WC), glucose, triacylglycerols, and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol were measured, and MetS was defined based on Adult Treatment Panel III guidelines. Multiple logistic regression models examined associations of frequency consumption of legumes with MetS occurrence and its components.
All MetS components were less prevalent among subjects with regular legume intake (P < 0.01). Legume intake was inversely associated with the risk of MetS, after adjustment for confounding factors in women. Life style adjusted odds ratio of Mets between highest and lowest tertile and no consumption (as reference category) of legume intake were 0.31 (0.13, 0.70), 0.38 (0.17, 0.87), respectively, in women (P = 0.01).
This study showed that age has a crucial role in MetS incidence; therefore, after further age adjustment to lifestyle adjusted model there was no significant difference in lower and higher tertile of legume intake and MetS.
PMCID: PMC4063515  PMID: 24963309
Legumes; Metabolic Syndrome; Iran
21.  Comparison of cost-effectiveness and postoperative outcome of device closure and open surgery closure techniques for treatment of patent ductus arteriosus 
ARYA Atherosclerosis  2014;10(1):37-40.
Various devices have been recently employed for percutaneous closure of the patent ductus arteriosus (PDA). Although the high effectiveness of device closure techniques has been clearly determined, a few studies have focused on the cost-effectiveness and also postoperative complications of these procedures in comparison with open surgery. The present study aimed to evaluate the clinical outcome and cost-effectiveness of PDA occlusion by Amplatzer and coil device in comparisong with open surgery.
In this cross-sectional study, a randomized sample of 201 patients aged 1 month to 16 years (105 patients with device closure and 96 patients with surgical closure) was selected. The ratio of total pulmonary blood flow to total systemic blood flow, the Qp/Qs ratio, was measured using a pulmonary artery catheter. The cost analysis included direct medical care costs associated with device implantation and open surgery, as well as professional fees. All costs were calculated in Iranian Rials and then converted to US dollars.
There was no statistical difference in mean Qp/Qs ratio before the procedure between the device closure group and the open surgery group (2.1 ± 0.7 versus 1.7 ± 0.6, P = 0.090). The mean measured costs were overall higher in the device closure group than in open closure group (948.87 ± 548.76 US$ versus 743.70 ± 696.91 US$, P < 0.001). This difference remained significant after adjustment for age and gender (Standardized Beta = 0.160, P = 0.031). PDA closure with the Amplatzer ductal occluder (1053.05 ± 525.73 US$) or with Nit-Occlud coils (PFM) (912.73 ± 565.94 US$, P < 0.001) was more expensive than that via open surgery. However, the Cook detachable spring coils device closure (605.65 ± 194.62 US$, P = 0.650) had a non-significant cost difference with open surgery. No event was observed in the device closure group regarding in-hospital mortality or morbidity; however, in another group, 2 in-hospital deaths occurred, two patients experienced pneumonia and seizure, and one suffered electrolyte abnormalities including hyponatremia and hypocalcemia.
Although open surgery seems to be less expensive than device closure technique, because of lower mortality and morbidity, the latter group is more preferable.
PMCID: PMC4063518  PMID: 24963312
Cost-effectiveness; Outcome; Device Closure; Open Surgery Closure; Patent Ductus Arteriosus
22.  A Cost-Benefit and Accurate Method for Assessing Microalbuminuria: Single versus Frequent Urine Analysis 
Background. The purpose of this study was to answer the question whether a single testing for microalbuminuria results in a reliable conclusion leading costs saving. Methods. This current cross-sectional study included a total of 126 consecutive persons. Microalbuminuria was assessed by collection of two fasting random urine specimens on arrival to the clinic as well as one week later in the morning. Results. In overall, 17 out of 126 participants suffered from microalbuminuria that, among them, 12 subjects were also diagnosed as microalbuminuria once assessing this factor with a sensitivity of 70.6%, a specificity of 100%, a PPV of 100%, a NPV of 95.6%, and an accuracy of 96.0%. The measured sensitivity, specificity, PVV, NPV, and accuracy in hypertensive patients were 73.3%, 100%, 100%, 94.8%, and 95.5%, respectively. Also, these rates in nonhypertensive groups were 50.0%, 100%, 100%, 97.3%, and 97.4%, respectively. According to the ROC curve analysis, a single measurement of UACR had a high value for discriminating defected from normal renal function state (c = 0.989). Urinary albumin concentration in a single measurement had also high discriminative value for diagnosis of damaged kidney (c = 0.995). Conclusion. The single testing of both UACR and urine albumin level rather frequent testing leads to high diagnostic sensitivity, specificity, and accuracy as well as high predictive values in total population and also in hypertensive subgroups.
PMCID: PMC3886273  PMID: 24455207
23.  Pivotal Role of Mediterranean Dietary Regimen in the Increase of Serum Magnesium Concentration in Patients with Coronary Artery Disease 
Background. Recent studies confirmed cardioprotective role of intravenous magnesium for the prevention of cardiac events, but effect of dietary intake of this mineral via recommended dietary regimens on control and inhibition of coronary artery disease (CAD) risk factors has been questioned. The aim of the present study was to determine effect of Mediterranean dietary approach on serum magnesium concentration among Iranian patients with CAD. Method. Baseline characteristics and clinical data of 102 consecutive patients with the diagnosis of CAD and candidates for isolated coronary artery bypass surgery were entered into the study. Laboratory parameters especially serum magnesium concentration were measured after 12–14 h of overnight fasting and before operation. Nutritional status was assessed by food frequency questionnaire and the diet score was calculated on the basis of Mediterranean diet quality index (Med-DQI). Results. No significant differences were found in the concentrations of albumin, last fasting blood sugar, last creatinine, and lipid profiles between the groups with Mediterranean dietary score < 5 and the group with higher dietary score; however, serum magnesium concentration in the first group was higher than that in the group with higher dietary score. Linear multivariate regression analysis showed that the lower Mediterranean dietary score was a predictor for serum magnesium concentration after adjusting for confounders. Conclusion. Taking Mediterranean dietary regimen can be associated with increased level of serum magnesium concentration, and thus this regimen can be cardioprotective because of its effects on serum magnesium.
PMCID: PMC3838832  PMID: 24307942
24.  Pivotal role of microRNA-33 in metabolic syndrome: A systematic review 
ARYA Atherosclerosis  2013;9(6):372-376.
Metabolic syndrome (MetS) is a major public health concerns and increase in the incidence of MetS caused a rise in the rates of global morbidity, and mortality due to cardiovascular disease and diabetes. Lifestyle modification, a healthy diet, and pharmacological treatment and bariatric surgery are recommended in order to control this syndrome. Molecular mechanisms of metabolic disorders are essential in order to develop novel, valid therapeutic strategies. MicroRNA-33 plays imperative regulatory roles in a variety of biological processes including collaboration with sterol regulatory element-binding protein (SREBP) to maintain cholesterol homeostasis, high-density lipoprotein formation, fatty acid oxidation, and insulin signaling. Investigation of these molecules and their genetic targets may potentially identify new pathways involved in complex metabolic disease processes, improve our understanding of metabolic disorders, and influence future approaches to the treatment of obesity. This article reviews the role of miRNA-33 in metabolic syndrome, and highlights the potential of using miRNA-33 as a novel biomarker and therapeutic target for this syndrome.
PMCID: PMC3933058  PMID: 24575141
MicroRNA-33; Insulin Resistance Syndrome X; Regulatory Role
25.  Sex based levels of C-reactive protein and white blood cell count in subjects with metabolic syndrome: Isfahan Healthy Heart Program 
C-reactive protein (CRP) and white blood cell (WBC) are proinflammatory markers. They are major pathophysiological for the development of metabolic syndrome (MetS). This study aimed to address the independent associations between MetS and WBC counts and serum CRP levels and evaluation of their magnitude in relation to the MetS, based on the sex in the Iranian adults.
Materials and Methods:
In this cross-sectional study, subjects who met the MetS criteria, based on the Adult Treatment Panel III were selected from the Isfahan Healthy Heart Program database. A questionnaire containing the demographic data, weight, height, waist, and hip circumference of the respondents was completed for each person. Blood pressure was measured and the anthropometric measurements were done, and fasting blood samples were taken for 2 h postload plasma glucose (2 hpp). Serum [total, high-density lipoprotein (HDL), and low-density lipoprotein] levels of cholesterol, triglyceride, and CRP as well as WBC counts were determined. The univariate analyses were carried out to assess the relation between the CRP levels, WBC counts with the MetS in both sexes the.
In men with the abdominal obesity, the higher levels of WBC count, high serum triglyceride and blood glucose levels, a low serum HDL level, and raised systolic and diastolic blood pressure were observed. However, the higher serum CRP levels were only observed in those with the low serum HDL-cholesterol levels. The mean values of the WBC counts were statistically different between the men with and without MetS, but the mean values of the CRP levels were similar between the two groups. In women, the mean values of WBC count and CRP levels were statistically different in the subjects with and without a MetS components (except for the low serum HDL levels and high diastolic blood pressure for the WBC measures and abdominal obesity for the CRP measures) and for those with and without MetS. The age and smoking adjusted changes in the CRP levels and WBC counts correlated with the number of Mets components in the women.
The findings of this study suggest substantial implications for the prevention and management of the MetS and atherosclerotic diseases, as these involve the suppression of inflammatory conditions rather than the incitement of anti-inflammatory conditions.
PMCID: PMC3818614  PMID: 24250693
C-reactive protein level; metabolic syndrome; white blood cell count

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