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Cardiovascular health – are eggs in or out?

13th July 2019, Dr Chee L Khoo

First, it’s not good, then it’s Ok and now we are not sure. Maybe it is, maybe it isn’t. We are talking about eggs and the association with cardiovascular disease and mortality. It’s stuck in many of our and our patients’ minds that eggs are no good. It doesn’t help when the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans came out with somewhat contradictory recommendations: “ (1) Cholesterol is not a nutrient of concern for overconsumption” and (2) “Individuals should eat as little dietary cholesterol as possible while consuming a healthy eating pattern” (1).…

Early diagnosis, prevention and treatment of Alzheimer Disease – where are we at now?

12th July 2019, Dr Chee L Khoo 

When we think about Alzheimer disease (AD) we think about the two classes of abnormal structures, extracellular amyloid plaques and intraneuronal neurofibrillary tangles. The soluble building blocks of these structures are amyloid-β (Aβ) peptides for plaques and tau for tangles. We have known about the association between Aβ and tau and AD for some time yet the only therapies available for patients with AD are the cholinesterase inhibitors and memantine which only target the symptoms of the disease.…

Fasting or non-fasting lipid levels – doesn’t it really matter?

22nd June 2019, Dr Chee L Khoo

It is standard to measure blood lipids after an 8-12 hour fast. Pretty much all our guidelines for management of cardiometabolic conditions are based on these fasting blood levels. The actual reading is important because it guides us to determine whether a patient is commenced on a statin or not. Do meals affect lipid levels?…

Diabetic peripheral neuropathy and serum cholesterol– is lower necessarily better?

22nd June 2019, Dr Chee L Khoo

Distal polyneuropathy (DPN) is one of the more severe complications of diabetes. The exact pathologic metabolic process of DPN is still uncertain but it is more common in patients with type 2 diabetes (T2DM) than in patients with type 1 diabetes (T1DM) even after adjusting for glucose levels. Thus, in addition to hyperglycaemia, other factors could be involved in the development of DPN such as obesity, hypertension, dyslipidaemia and renal impairment. …

Montelukast and neuropsychiatric events in kids with asthma – is there a link?

10th June 2019, Dr Chee L Khoo

Children with moderate to severe asthma often needs more than the usual bronchodilators. Even the newer long acting beta agonists (LABA) or long acting muscarinic antagonists (LAMA) may not be enough to control the symptoms and reduce exacerbations and inhaled corticosteroids (ICS) are often needed. But we are careful to keep the total daily dose of corticosteroids to a minimum.…

Checkpoint inhibitor-induced T1D – a newly emerging syndrome

8th June 2019, Dr Chee L Khoo

Checkpoint inhibitors are monoclonal antibodies that block checkpoint molecules, cytotoxic T-lymphocyte-associated protein 4 (CTLA-4), programmed death-1 (PD-1) and PD-1 ligand 1 (PD – L1). They have revolutionised cancer treatment because of their ability to improve survival in a growing number of cancers. Some of the cancers that have been successfully treated include melanoma, lung cancer, kidney cancer, bladder cancer, head and neck cancer, and Hodgkin’s lymphoma.…

SGLT2 inhibitors and the diabetic kidney – friend or foe?

26th May 2019, Dr Chee L Khoo

Sometimes when a drug is contraindicated for patients with low eGFR, it may mean that usage of the drug may further damage the kidneys or increase the risk of certain adverse events. For example, the use of metformin in patients with eGFR <30 significantly increase the risk of lactic acidosis. Usage of lithium in patients with impaired renal function (low eGFR) may further damage the kidneys.…

Diabetes inducing drugs – who is next on the list?

13th May 2019, Dr Chee L Khoo

The list of drugs that increase the risk of type 2 diabetes (T2D) is increasing. We know statins (1,2), anti-psychotics (3) and many of the anti-retroviral (4) and immunosuppressant agents (5) have been shown to increase the risk of T2D. We also heard last year about the ACE inhibitors. Recent studies have implicated the 5α-reductase inhibitors, the drugs that we use to treat benign prostatic hypertrophy (BPH) as well.…

Breakfast – how important is it?

23rd April, 2019, Dr Chee L Khoo

Somehow, it has been drummed into us, as doctors and consumers, that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. What does that even mean? As discerning scientists, we should seek to clarify what outcome measures they are referring to when they say, “the most important meal of the day”. We should also question what type of breakfast they are referring to and the subjects recruited in the studies.…

“Ideal” BP in the Elderly – what is the target again?

22nd April 2019, Dr Chee L Khoo

Hardening of the arteries” is pretty much inevitable when one gets older. A majority of our patients >70 years old are on anti-hypertensive treatment. The problem is they keep changing the targets we are meant to be aiming for in this cohort of patients. The ACC/AHA High Blood Pressure guidelines 2017 recommends 130/80 mmHg even for patients >70 years old (1).…

Weight loss with Duromine® – how safe is Duromine®?

14th April 2019, Dr Chee L Khoo

It’s difficult, isn’t it? Patients who are overweight or obese often has either significant cardiovascular risks or already have cardiovascular co-morbidities. These are the patients that need some assistance with weight loss but we always hesitate to prescribe Duromine®. We were taught and warned about the “dangers” of the drug especially in relation to “cardiovascular disease” and blood pressure.…

Reduction of major CV events by SGLT2 inhibitors – who will benefit from what?

13th April 2019, Dr Chee L Khoo

SGLT2 inhibitors, as a class of anti-diabetic drugs, have been shown in multiple cardiovascular outcomes trials (EMPA-REQ, DECLARE-TIMI 58, CANVAS) to “reduce cardiovascular events in patients with type 2 diabetes (T2D)”. These are big headlines but as obsessive clinicians, we need to be more specific in the benefits of SGLT2 inhibitors in patients with T2D.…

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