App-Sensor System Helps Track Parkinson’s Progression

Researchers in Spain are developing the PERFORM system, which uses a smartphone application and a network of sensors to monitor patients with Parkinson’s disease. The system identifies abnormalities and transmits data to a clinician for evaluation.

Drinking Alcohol In Middle-Age Raises Stroke Risk

A study published in the journal Stroke found that middle-age adults who drink more than two alcoholic beverages per day may increase their risk of stroke between ages 60 and 75, compared with those who drank less. The study found people who drank, on average, less than half of one alcoholic drink per day had the lowest stroke rate. Consuming more than two drinks per day in middle age was a stronger risk factor for stroke before age 75 than diabetes or hypertension, research showed.

Hospitals Go After Heart Care Quality From New Angle

Hospitals have made big improvements in accelerating treatment for patients whose heart attacks occur outside their walls. Now, cardiology teams and other clinicians are turning their attention to improving care for those who experience a heart attack as inpatients. According to estimates, 10,000 people experience a heart attack while under treatment for another issue. Signs of heart trouble in such patients can be difficult to identify, but experts believe they can improve treatment by addressing avoidable delays, and early results from such efforts are promising. The Wall Street Journal (tiered subscription model)

U.S. Sees Increase In Diabetes-Related Expenses

U.S. sees increase in diabetes-related expenses A study in Diabetes Care showed the annual diabetes-related cost per person grew to $5,378 in 2010-2011, up from $4,205 in 2000-2001 and $2,588 in 1987. Data also showed 55% of health expenses went to prescription drugs, while 24% was for inpatient visits and 15% for outpatient visits. Reuters

Healthy Habits Cut Women’s Risk of Heart Disease By 90% Over 20 Years

Healthy habits cut women’s risk of heart disease by 90% over 20 years. Adhering to six healthy habits can reduce a woman’s chances of getting heart disease by 90% over 20 years, according to a study in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. Researchers followed about 90,000 nurses from 1991 to 2011, focusing on behaviors that include maintaining a normal weight, getting 2.5 hours a week of exercise, eating a healthy diet and not smoking. HealthDay News (1/5)