New links page

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Jun 132015

We have added a links page to highlight organisations or groups that are of particular interest to PHSG and its members. Click to view the Links Page.

The content of the page contains the following information :

  • Cardiomyopathy UK is a charity that provides information and support to those affected by the heart muscle disease cardiomyopathy. The disease affects people of all ages and often runs in families. We have cardiomyopathy support nurses, information days around the country, support groups and a network of affected volunteers who provide support to others by telephone and email. Our helpline (free from a landline) is 0800 0181 024
  • British Heart Foundation – The UK’s number one heart charity. PHSG is affiliated to the BHF, which provides support and also insurance for us.
  • Arrhythmia Alliance (A-A), The Heart Rhythm Charity – A-A is a coalition of charities, patient groups, patients, carers, medical groups and allied professionals. Although these groups remain independent, they work together under the A-A umbrella to promote timely and effective diagnosis and treatment of arrhythmias. PHSG is affiliated to the Arrhythmia Alliance.

Classical music could reduce risk of heart disease, study suggests

 Health, News  Comments Off on Classical music could reduce risk of heart disease, study suggests
Jun 102015

Classical music could reduce blood pressure and lower the risk of heart disease, according to an unusual study

The research, which was conducted at Oxford University, found that classical music that classical music with a repeated 10-second rhythm was capable of reducing blood pressure. The researchers identified a number of suitable pieces, including Va Pensiero by Giusuppe Verdi, Nessun Dorma by Giacomo Puccini, Beethoven’s 9th Symphony adagio, and Franz Schubert’s Ave Maria.

The researchers did not find the same benefits when they looked at other genres of music. In fact, many other genres increased blood pressure. Neither did the music have to be tailored to personal preference; regardless of what the participants claimed to like listening to, the effect on blood pressure was the same.

The news is of particular relevance to people with diabetes, who are more likely to develop heart disease. Studies suggest that as many as 80 per cent of people with diabetes die as a result of heart disease.

High blood pressure is also a common complication of diabetes, affecting every other person with diabetes. People with diabetes are urged to receive annual blood pressure checks.

The researchers analysed a range of studies that examine the effects of music on the heart. Armed with this information, they tested six different kinds of music on a small group of students. Slow classical music reduced heart rate, fast classical music had no effect, and fast popular music increased the heart rate.

The therapeutic potential of music has long been suspected, but properly controlled trials on the subject have been scarce.

“Music is already being used commercially as a calming therapy but this has happened independent of controlled studies into its effectiveness,” said study author Professor Peter Sleight, a cardiologist from the University of Oxford.

“Our research has provided improved understanding as to how music, particularly certain rhythms, can affect your heart and blood vessels.

“But further robust studies are needed, which could reduce scepticism of the real therapeutic role of music.”

Professor Jeremy Pearson, associate medical director at the British Heart Foundation, said: “We know that stress can play a role in cardiovascular disease so the calming effect of music may have some potential as a therapy.

“However, as Professor Sleight points out, more robust evidence is needed before we see cardiologists prescribing a dose of Taylor Swift or 30 minutes of Vivaldi a day.”