Entries in Elderly Women (2)


Study Finds Heart Failure Treatment More Effective For Women 

Image Courtesy - Getty Images(CHICAGO) -- A new study says that a therapy to prevent heart failure is twice as effective in women as it is in men. When women were treated with a device that serves as both a pacemaker and a defibrillator, they had a 70-percent reduction in heart failure, compared to just half that rate in men, the study found.

This research builds off of a similar study done in 2009 that showed patients fared better with a combination device, rather than just with a defibrillator alone. Researchers say this data is significant because it is the first study that shows a treatment that is clearly more effective in women than in men.

The reason the combination device proved to be so effective, the study said, is because it not only regulates the heart's pace, but can monitor if there is a slowdown in the heartbeat, and send an electrical pulse to make it pick up the pace. The research centers around what is known as resynchronization therapy, a process that forces both sides of the heart to beat in unison. Women generally suffer more from this problem, researchers said, which explained why their bodies responded better to the device.

Included in the research were 453 female participants and 1,367 male subjects.

The study, entitled "Cardiac Resynchronization Therapy Is More Effective in Women Than in Men:
The Multicenter Automatic Defibrillator Implantation Trial With Cardiac Resynchronization Therapy Trial," was published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Faith-Based Exercise Boosts Activity in Elderly Women

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- Religious scripture could be the secret to fitness success for certain elderly communities, according to a pilot study on faith-based exercise.

Researchers at The University of California in Los Angeles found that for people who are religious, preaching exercise as a form of praise and prayer may the key to motivating the elderly to stay fit.

Researchers used 45-minute weekly exercise sessions in tandem with 45-minute exercise education lessons incorporating positive reinforcement, scripture readings and group prayer, in hopes of increasing overall activity levels among 62 elderly black women in a Los Angeles community over an eight-week period.

Four months after the effort finished, researchers looked at the women's blood pressure and activity level, measured by steps taken per week. When compared with women who were given only the exercise sessions and lessons with no religious component, those receiving the faith-based interventions increased their activity level by 78 percent. Those without it increased activity by only 19 percent.

African-Americans suffer from a lot of health problems, and the elderly populations are particularly difficult to motivate to exercise, says Dr. O. Kenrik Duru, lead author on the study and a doctor at the UCLA Medical Center.

"We were trying to use the strength in the community to help them. Over 90 percent of older African-American adults report praying nearly every day. We thought that if we could leverage the church in exercise interventions, this might be more effective and sustainable," he says.

Though significant weight loss was not noted in the women, those in the intervention group walked an estimated four to five miles more per week than they had before, and had a drop in resting blood pressure.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio