Another stroke overlooked in a young adult

It took 30 minutes for friends and coworkers to call 911 and get help for then 19 year old Phoebe Dow.   They were trying to figure out, “Are you Ok”?  “Are you intoxicated?”

Phoebe was not OK, she was having a stroke.  But, that couldn’t be, right?  “Everyone knows kids and young adults can’t  have strokes”…

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It was later found that Phoebe’s stroke was caused by a PFO (patent foramen ovale) or a “hole” in her heart.

PFO Closure-Still in the Dark Ages?


Heart Stopper of the Week: “St. Jude Recalls Amplatzer”

Amplatzer TorqVue FX Delivery System was recalled this week- Not the Amplatzer Occluder

If you have one of these in your ticker, you certainly don’t want to pop open your email like I did earlier this week and find this headline in a google alert for Amplatzer:

St. Jude Recalls Amplatzer Device – Yahoo! Finance
From Yahoo! Finance: St. Jude is voluntarily recalling its Amplatzer

Important note: Fortunately it was just the Amplatzer TorqVue FX Delivery System that was recalled this week and not the Amplatzer Occluder itself.

Here are other relevant alerts for details to the full story below.

By the way, no thanks to Yahoo! Finance for leaving the details out of their headline.

St. Jude Medical, AMPLATZER TorqVue FX Delivery System: Class I
Core wire fracture may lead to serious adverse health consequences, including death.

St. Jude Recalls Amplatzer Device – Analyst Blog (press release)
Medical devices major St. Jude Medical Inc. (STJ – Analyst Report) is voluntarily recalling its Amplatzer TorqVue FX Delivery System because the product could cause fatal injuries to patients. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a Class I

Southern “Stroke Belt” Diet compared to the Conventional American Diet

A recent diet study, the Reasons for Geographic and Racial Differences in Stroke (REGARDS), was presented  during the International Stroke Conference 2013.  As reported in this study,  ” a diet rich in salty, high-fat fried foods and sugary drinks explains about 63% of the racial variation in stroke risk”.

The study authors concluded that almost two-thirds of the attributable stroke risk blamed for the Southern “Stroke Belt”  is due to diet.   You can view the study summary as reported by Heartwire here.

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Do you need to KickStart your day?

PepsiCo's new KickStart-It's what? For breakfast??
PepsiCo’s new KickStart-It’s what? For breakfast??

David Dansereau,MSPT post for

PepsiCo is now hoping you and perhaps your kids will reach for their new “solution” when you decide what to drink for breakfast.  Recently they announced their new morning energy drink solution in a can called KickStart, available Feb 25,2013 according to their website.  Can you say Mountain Dew for breakfast?  Yep, it is here and coming to store shelves real soon so if you need to give your busy morning a boost reach for a KickStart, because on top of a Mountain Dew dose of caffeine you’ll also be getting 10% real fruit juice as well.    That’s just enough of a marketing spin for PepsiCo to rely on to sell you more of their brand “stickiness” and they hope it will now carry over to breakfast.

Parents who are already filling their kids up with sugar bombs in the form of PepsiCo sodas and sports drinks should know that although the amount of caffeine is strictly limited in the soda they give their kids (by the Food and Drug Administration), energy drinks get a free hall pass.  Energy drinks get their own category so they do not have to comply and can have any amount of caffeine or special energy “co-factors” the manufacturer wants to throw in the mix.

Need a Boost?  Look at you Poor Diet and Sleep Habits...don't look in a can!
Need a Boost? Look at your Poor Diet and Sleep Habits…don’t look in a can!

We already have a growing lineup of canned solutions to boost your poor eating habits.  Conveniently, they are loaded with caffeine too and go by the names Red Bull, Monster, Rockstar, 5-Hour Energy, AMP to name a few.   Now, add KickStart, and PepsiCo is hoping you’ll say, “it’s what’s for breakfast”!

[Personal sidebar]  Yes, I hope you really don’t reach for this new drink for breakfast.  I bring this to your attention because adults and kids are in fact having heart attacks and strokes from overdosing on caffeine and even worse mixing these energy drinks with alcohol.   High priced energy drinks are a small but fast-growing segment of soft drinks and I bet you’ll see Coke stepping up to give PepsiCo some breakfast competition real soon!  Sad, but if it is any indication this drink will probably be a hit.  PepsiCo offered free samples on their site for anyone who couldn’t wait and needed an early taste to get pumped up on KickStart.   They had to end the free  offer because it was so popular…

David Dansereau at

David Danseereau,MSPT


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