NSLHD News March 12

GEnetic breakthrough offers hope for women with rare, deadly condition

Pregnancy induced heart failure is a compli- cation of pregnancy that threatens the lives of around 200 new Australian mothers each year, but a team from the Kolling Institute is leading new research to identify and treat women at risk of the condition. Known as Peripartum Cardiomyopathy, the rare disease weakens the heart muscle during pregnancy. Dr Anthony Ashton said it is a complex con- dition, with the three different types of preg- nancy induced heart failure contributing to three very different outcomes. “Around a third of women impacted will re- cover following the birth of their child, while a large share will manage with medication for the rest of their lives,” Dr Ashton said. “Some women however, will have a 20 per cent chance of dying within five years or re- quire a life-saving heart transplant.” Researchers at the Kolling are offering re- newed hope with the team identifying the gene signatures linked to the condition. “This has been a breakthrough discovery and has paved the way towards improved diagno- sis and ultimately treatment,” he said.

Dr Anthony Ashton

“With this new understanding of the genetic influences, we are now working to develop a test to help us identify women with the con- dition and treat it before it becomes deadly. “A greater knowledge of the genetics will also allow us to develop specific therapeu- tic breakthroughs for the different types of pregnancy induced heart failure, improving survival and maternal health. “The disease can have a devastating impact on women and their families, so we’re en- couraged by the recent advances and opti- mistic improved treatment will be offered in the years ahead.”

New nurses at their orientation

A Warm welcome to our new grad nurses The first intake of graduate nurses for 2020 have started at Northern Sydney Local Health District.

Gathered at Royal North Shore for orientation, the graduates will then be welcomed at Hornsby ( 22), Mona Vale (5), Ryde (18), RNSH (89), Mental Health Drug and Alcohol (34), Medical Imaging (2), and Community Health (12).

This year 182 trainee nurses will join our hospitals and services and will work in ICU, ED, general surgical, mental health and midwifery.



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