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2013: Year-end summary of top cardiology stories

When the editors of Medscape asked me to write a Top Ten article on the best Cardiology stories in 2013, I jumped at the chance. I spent a lot of time thinking about Cardiology this year. I was invested.

Plus, 2013 was a year for pivoting–big time pivoting. What made news in 2013 was not new drugs or devices, but new approaches to heart disease. Entire paradigms changed. The rock of dogma was cracked. The verb need, as in Mr Jones needs this pill or procedure, began its decline.

And the disruption is only beginning.

For instance, a patient with heart disease who was already on a statin drug asked me yesterday: “Should I have my cholesterol checked?”

“No, we don’t do that anymore,” I responded. He was shocked.

These are big changes. The doctor’s lounge in my hospital is abuzz with the disruption wrought by the stories of 2013.

The summary post is a little long, carrying on for over four pages. Sorry about that. I couldn’t help myself.

A few teasers: There’s some optimism for ObamaCare. I mentioned a former president, my grandfather and the most important medical book of the year. Compassion for the elderly, leveling the playing field of medical information and the effects of sunshine each made the list. And the most important cardiology study of the year, perhaps the decade, involves the treatment of atrial fibrillation. And as they say: much more.

The title of the Medscape/Cardiology post is John Mandrola’s Top 10 (err, 11) Cardiology Stories of 2013


4 replies on “2013: Year-end summary of top cardiology stories”

Can you get permission from Medscape to republish here the text of your article for those of us interested ‘civilians’ who follow your excellent blog? Your teaser worked. I clicked the link, but only got the Medscape paywall.

Keep up the great writing (but let us see it)!


Hank Stanley

Dr. Mandrola.
Could you be more specific about “root causes of AF” ? You mentioned weight control, sleep apnea, hypertension, glucose control and alcohol reduction. I still have incidents of AF eight months after ablation. I am slightly under-weighted,
have no sleep apnea, do not drink at all, my glucose is ok, and control my marginal hypertension with 5 mg Altace. I exercise about 2 hrs a day (including yoga), albeit rather gently (67 yrs old), meditate and try to stay optimistic. Can hardly think about anything else, neither can my cardiologist nor electrophysiologist?

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