Emory conference to educate health professionals about 'metabolic syndrome'

An estimated 25 percent of adults over the age of 20 and close to 50 percent of adults over the age of 50 have the component risk factors that make up Metabolic Syndrome. The emerging health problem is the focus of a symposium for health professionals on Friday, May 21, hosted by the Emory University School of Medicine.

Thirteen nationally recognized experts on this increasingly common disorder will present at a daylong conference called "Metabolic Syndrome: An Obesity-Related National Epidemic---Mechanisms, Clinical Care and Future Directions. The event is CME-accredited and will include session topics on the clinical characteristics, pathogenesis and treatment of the metabolic syndrome, its associated conditions, and future research directions. It will be held from 8:00 a.m. to 5:15 p.m. in the auditorium of the Woodruff Health Sciences Center Administration Building on the Emory campus at 1440 Clifton Road.

Metabolic Syndrome, also known as Syndrome X, is a clustering of cardiovascular disease risk factors that is highly linked to obesity. It causes an increased risk of coronary heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and other diseases related to plaque buildups in artery walls, such as stroke and peripheral vascular disease. The diagnosis of the condition is based on the presence of three or more cardiovascular disease risk factors, including increased abdominal fat, pre-diabetes, high blood pressure, evidence of mild generalized inflammation, low blood levels of "good" cholesterol (HDL cholesterol) and/or high blood levels of triglycerides (circulating fats in the blood).

"The actual criteria for diagnosis of Metabolic Syndrome are still being debated by researchers," says Thomas R. Ziegler, M.D., associate professor of medicine, Department of Medicine, and director of the Emory Center for Clinical and Molecular Nutrition. "For example, some criteria include abnormalities such as a tendency for easy blood clotting and evidence of oxidative

Contact: Tia Webster
Emory University Health Sciences Center

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