Heart study on hunt for healthy volunteers

10 January 2017

Healthy Western Australians with a family history of heart disease are being invited to volunteer for a major study that could help lower the risk of coronary artery disease (CAD) in families with a background of heart health issues.

Senior in a gym sitting on an exercise ball and holding a dumbbell

The study is part of a National Health and Medical Research Council-funded trial being conducted in several states.

Many heart attacks are the result of an inherited predisposition to CAD but unless a person is found to have high levels of cholesterol in their blood, it cannot be sure how best to treat them. This trial will help determine whether a scan of the heart (to measure calcium build-up in the arteries) and prescription of a simple medication offers the best form of preventative therapy.

Prospective volunteers would need to:

  • be aged between 40 and 70 years
  • be healthy and without heart problems
  • have an immediate family member who – before turning 60 – had a heart attack, a coronary stent inserted or underwent heart surgery
  • have an aunty or uncle or grandparent who – before the age of 50 – had a heart attack, a coronary stent inserted or underwent heart surgery
  • not be taking a statin (cholesterol-lowering drug).

Volunteers who meet initial prerequisites for the trial will undergo the heart scan to determine their calcium scores (a measure of the calcium build-up in their arteries and an indicator of coronary risk) but only those found to be at low to medium risk will be eligible for the study.

To register interest in the trial contact Jackie Ryan, the study Clinical Coordinator, by telephone 9224 0388, fax 9224 0329 or email.