Thursday, April 9, 2015

Coming Up Short?

Frankly I could not resist this one. In NEJM of all places there is an article purportedly showing that short people have greater risk of heart attacks.

The conclusion is:

There is a primary association between a genetically determined shorter height and an increased risk of CAD, a link that is partly explained by the association between shorter height and an adverse lipid profile. Shared biologic processes that determine achieved height and the development of atherosclerosis may explain some of the association. (Funded by the British Heart Foundation and others.)

Now several observations:

 1. The number of authors almost exceed the number of patient samples. Just kidding but there appears to be several dozen authors. This is an ever evolving trend, at some point the list of authors may eventually exceed the length of the paper.

2. The result may be interesting but it is not prognostic or diagnostic. Also there is not much we can do about being short. Then again look at Napoleon.

3. This is a British funded project, wonder of NIH would do the same here.

4. Obesity is a much more significant risk factor for which we can really do something. Why even do this study and why in NEJM?

Every once in a while it is worth looking at the other side of the weighty research.