Cheap blood test that can predict early the risk of heart attack TEN YEARS

A low-cost blood test can accurately predict an adult's risk of suffering a heart attack ten years in advance.

Doctors in A & E units across the UK already use troponin tests to examine whether a patient has had a heart attack.

But the health guard dog, the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (Nice), has now approved them as a predictive test.

Doctors from A & E units across the UK already use troponin tests to examine whether a patient has had a heart attack

The tests, proven 100% accurate in scientific studies, have been included in the Nice Accelerated Access Program.

This speeds up the tests, meaning they could be implemented through the NHS and offered in midlife MOTs in the coming years.

The current 10-year infarction predictions are based on a tool called QRISK, which highlights several risk factors, including lifestyle, age and weight.

But the new test approved measures for blood proteins called troponins, released by damaged heart cells.

Professor Nick Mills, a researcher at the University of Edinburgh, who led test trials, praised his effectiveness in an interview with the Times.

He said: "The technology for measuring troponin in the blood is so good that it is no longer useful for measuring people with large amounts of damage to the heart.

"He can still do it, and very well, but now he can measure the troponin in everyone he's telling us more than you've had a heart attack or not.

"He's talking about your heart's health more generally."

Sir Nilesh Samani, medical director of the British Heart Foundation, praised the Nice move.

He said the charitable organization hoped that doctors would be able to use this simple test earlier to identify people at higher risk of suffering from heart attack. "

Experts hope the test can offer thousands of middle-aged adults an alarm bell if they will eventually be added to the NHS free midlife.

The midlife MOT, which was launched in 2009, has faced criticism for failing to improve health or save a considerable number of lives.

But if new troponin-based tests are added, it could improve the accuracy of the tests, offered once every five years to adults between 40 and 74 in England.

Professor Mills told the Times: "Although this is not yet part of everyone's health check, perhaps it will be in the future."

It comes after a study by the University of Texas in August discovered that simple blood testing was safe and effective.

Cardiologists behind the study revealed that they had not lost any heart attacks using the test in the study of over 500 people.


Measuring blood troponin levels in the blood allows doctors to diagnose a heart attack or other cardiac conditions more effectively and provide immediate treatment.

In healthy people, troponin levels are low enough to be undetectable.

If you have had chest pain but troponin levels are still low 12 hours after chest pain has started the possibility of an unlikely heart attack.

The high levels are an immediate red flag. Troponin levels may rise within three to four hours after the heart has been damaged and may remain high up to 14 days.

Troponin levels are measured in nanograms per milliliter. Normal levels fall below the 99th percentile in the blood test.

If the troponin results are higher than this level, it could be an indication of cardiac injury or heart attack.

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