Even mummies had clogged arteries: study

Sapa-AP | 11 March, 2013 09:4

A file picture of a mummy being scanned.

A file picture of a mummy being scanned.

Even without modern-day temptations like fast food or cigarettes, people had clogged arteries some 4,000 years ago, according to the biggest-ever study of mummies searching for the condition.

Researchers say that suggests heart disease may be more a natural part of human aging rather than being directly tied to contemporary risk factors like smoking, eating fatty foods and not exercising.

CT scans of 137 mummies showed evidence of atherosclerosis, or hardened arteries, in one third of those examined, including those from ancient people believed to have healthy lifestyles. Atherosclerosis causes heart attacks and strokes. More than half of the mummies were from Egypt while the rest were from Peru, southwest America and the Aleutian islands in Alaska. The mummies were from about 3800 B.C. to 1900 A.D.

“Heart disease has been stalking mankind for over 4,000 years all over the globe,” said Dr. Randall Thompson, a cardiologist at Saint Luke’s Mid America Heart Institute in Kansas City and the paper’s lead author.

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Novato driver dies in Highway 101 crash

Published: Wednesday, September 28, 2011 at 3:50 p.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, September 28, 2011 at 9:01 p.m.

A Novato woman was killed and her passenger was seriously injured Wednesday afternoon when her car left Highway 101 north of Novato and struck a tree.

Authorities later identified the driver as Zoila Cruz, 33, according to the Marin Independent Journal.

Highway 101 was closed after the 1:21 p.m. accident, while a helicopter airlifted the unidentified passenger to Marin General Hospital.

One southbound lane remained closed until 3:42 p.m., and traffic backed up for miles in both directions.

The driver apparently lost control of her 2005 Chevrolet Aveo, which left the southbound lane near Olompali State Historic Park and struck a tree, bursting into flames.

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Sick sinus syndrome

from the A.D.A.M. Medical Encyclopedia.

Sick sinus syndrome
Bradycardia-tachycardia syndrome; Sinus node dysfunction
Last reviewed: June 4, 2012.

Sick sinus syndrome is a collection of heart rhythm disorders that include:

  • Sinus bradycardia — slow heart rates from the natural pacemaker of the heart
  • Sinus pauses or arrest — when the natural pacemaker of the heart stops working for periods of time

People with these disorders may also have other abnormal heart rhythms, such as:

  • Atrial tachycardia — fast heart rate that starts in the upper chambers of the heart (atria)
  • Bradycardia-tachycardia — alternating slow and fast heart rhythms

Causes, incidence, and risk factors

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