When it comes to heart health, taller is better, a study in this week's New England Journal of Medicine confirms, at least as far as coronary artery disease goes. And as Rick and I discuss on PodMed this week, as tall people we're happy to hear it! But a closer look at the study also reveals that the authors use 'genetic variants,' aka, single nucleotide polymorphisms or SNPs, already known to be associated with height or with coronary artery disease to define the association. That's a novel approach that may prove quite useful in nailing down other long-observed but not proven associations. It may prove fruitful in generating ideas on possible mechanisms whereby coronary artery disease risk and height are linked as well. As I opine to Rick, of course, the study doesn't provide a target for intervention or lifestyle modification to reduce risk, so is somewhat limited in terms of practicability, but gets the gee whiz prize for this week.
Other topics include 2 studies on exercise intensity and mortality in JAMA Internal Medicine, sudden cardiac death and exercise in Circulation, and open versus microsurgical laminectomy in the BMJ along with surgery versus physical therapy in Annals of Internal Medicine. Until next week, y'all live well.