To buttress these claims they will cite the studies of Esseslystn, Pritikin and Ornish. Who Is Dean Ornish? Dean Ornish has an MD degree from Baylor University and trained in internal medicine but has no formal cardiology or nutrition training although many internet sites including Wikipedia describe him as a cardiologist. The Ornish claims are based on a study he performed between and which originally had 28 patients with coronary artery disease in an experimental arm and 20 in a control group. Somehow , this randomization process assigned 53 to the experimental group and 40 to the usual-care control group.
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To buttress these claims they will cite the studies of Esseslystn, Pritikin and Ornish. Who Is Dean Ornish? Dean Ornish has an MD degree from Baylor University and trained in internal medicine but has no formal cardiology or nutrition training although many internet sites including Wikipedia describe him as a cardiologist.
The Ornish claims are based on a study he performed between and which originally had 28 patients with coronary artery disease in an experimental arm and 20 in a control group. Somehow , this randomization process assigned 53 to the experimental group and 40 to the usual-care control group.
If this were truly a randomization the numbers would be equal and the baseline characteristics equal. Only 23 of the 53 assigned to the experimental group agreed to participate and only 20 of the control group. The control group was older, less likely to be employed and less educated. Gee, I wonder which group will do better? The control group had none of the above. Needless to say this was not blinded and the researchers definitely knew which patients were in which group.
QCA as a test for assessing coronary artery disease has a number of limitations and as a result is no longer utilized for this purpose in clinical trials. The minimal diameter meaning the tightest stenosis changed from 1. At 5 years the minimal diameter had increased another whopping.
There were no significant differences between the groups at 5 years in hard events such as heart attack or death. In fact 2 of the experimental group died versus 1 of the control group by 5 years. There were less stents and bypasses performed in the Ornish group but the decision to proceed to stent or bypass is notoriously capricious when performed outside the setting of acute MI. The patients in the experimental group under the guidance of Ornish and their Ornish counselors would be strongly motivated to do everything possible to avoid intervention.
It is a trial of multiple different interventions with frequent counseling and meetings to reinforce and guide patients. The interventions included things that we know are really important for long term health-regular exercise, smoking cessation, and weight management.
These factors alone could account for any differences in the outcome but they are easily adopted without becoming a vegetarian. The patients who agreed to the experimental arm were a clearly highly motivated bunch who agreed to this really strict regimen. Despite all the limitations the study does raise an interesting hypothesis. Should we all be eating vegan diets? Finally, this tiny study has never been reproduced at any other center.
Multiple studies using IVUS and other techniques have revealed a robust relation between statin therapy and plaque regression.
A meta-analysis of IVUS trials including patients showed an association between plaque regression and decreased cardiovascular events. Ornish has yoked his science to advocates of pseudoscience, such as Deepak Chopra and Rustum Roy. The reason could be common philosophy. It could be expedience. It could be any number of things. By doing so, however, Dr. Ornish has made a Faustian deal with the devil that may give him short-term notoriety now but virtually guarantees serious problems with his ultimately being taken seriously scientifically, as he is tainted by this association.
Is Dean Ornish’s Lifestyle Program “Scientifically Proven To Undo (Reverse) Heart Disease?”
February 18, Reversing heart disease is the goal of Dr. Dean Ornish, MD, cardiologist, author, and healthcare reformer, firmly believes you can reverse heart disease with a disciplined program of exercise, meditation, diet changes, and more. Ornish is the founder and president of the non-profit Preventive Medicine Research Institute and a professor of medicine at the University of California, San Francisco. He is the author of six books, including Dr. It brings together doctors, nurses, yoga and meditation teachers, exercise physiologists, dietitians, and psychologists, who work together with participants on supervised exercise, stress management through yoga and meditation, emotional support, and nutrition counseling as part of a group meal. After 72 hours of training, people in the program go into a self-directed community where they support each other in continuing the healthy habits learned.
Dr. Dean Ornish: Turn Back the Clock on Heart Disease
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