- By Dana Sparks
Cardio-Rheumatology Clinic to Catch Early Heart Disease in Arthritis Patients
People with rheumatoid arthritis, lupus and other chronic forms of inflammatory arthritis can face many life-threatening complications and now heart disease tops the list. Patients suffering from such rheumatic diseases are twice as likely as the average person to develop heart problems, and catching heart disease early is critical. Mayo Clinic cardiologists and rheumatologists are joining forces to create the Mayo Clinic Cardio-Rheumatology Clinic to pioneer new diagnostic tools and break this dangerous disease connection.
Mayo rheumatology chair Eric Matteson, M.D., says, “We offer patients a more detailed assessment of their cardiovascular status and a more detailed examination of risk factors besides the usual conventional risk factors such as lipids, cholesterol and smoking. We also are taking into account the rheumatic disease burden, the disease activity and the treatment of the rheumatic disease as a factor for mitigating cardiovascular risk.” Dr. Matteson is moderating a presentation Saturday on “cardio rheumatology” during an American Heart Association scientific meeting in Dallas.
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Journalists: Sound bites with Dr. Matteson are available in the downloads.