Heart failure could heighten the risk of developing cancer: Dutch research

Heart failure heightens the risk of developing cancer, according to a group of doctors in Groningen who have carried out wide-ranging research using both mice and humans. A heart with a damaged pump excretes a substance which can stimulate the growth of tumors, the doctors found. The results of the research are published in the medical journal Circulation. ‘Heart failure upsets the entire system,’ research leader Rudolph de Boer told the NRC. ‘It speeds up biological ageing. Patients can develop problems with their kidneys, liver and often become anaemic. ‘We saw a lot of people in our clinic who were anaemic who were notably dying of cancer. Our hypothesis was that this was due to the damaged heart.’   More >

Home nursing staff shortages mount

One third of home nursing organisations questioned by broadcaster NOS say that they do not have enough staff to fill their rosters over the summer and thousands of full-time jobs are still vacant. In total, NOS questioned 63 home nursing companies with over 281,000 clients between them. The staff shortages are so acute that some companies are increasing the pay for temporary staff by two euros an hour, if they commit to the entire two-month summer period, the broadcaster said. In total, the 63 organisations are short of 1,500 full-time home nurses. Priority is being given to patients who are terminally ill, have just been discharged from hospital or who need acute nursing care, sector umbrella group Actiz said. 'This means some people will have to wait longer than normal for help and support,' chairwoman Jacqueline Joppe told NOS.  More >