Launch of ORISCAV-LUX 2 study to assess cardiovascular health in Luxembourg

2016 - 04 - 12

Launch of ORISCAV-LUX 2 study to assess cardiovascular health in Luxembourg

LIH’s Department of Population Health launched the second wave of the ORISCAV-LUX study (Observation des Risques et de la Santé Cardiovasculaire au Luxembourg), aiming principally to assess the cardiovascular health of Luxembourg’s resident population, and to identify the potentially modifiable and non-classical risk factors to suggest efficient preventive health measures. In addition, several research hypotheses shall be tested based on the constructed database.

Cardiovascular disease is the primary cause of death worldwide. Myocardial infarction or stroke were accounting for 33% of deaths in Luxembourg in 2014. Yet, 80% of these deaths could most probably be prevented. Gender, age, ethnicity and family medical history are non-modifiable factors, however, factors related to the environment and lifestyle such as smoking, dietary habits or physical inactivity can potentially be modified by a more conscious and healthy lifestyle.

‘These risk factors - sometimes silent over years - can be detected, and risks can be reduced through preventive actions sustained by a regular population surveillance,’ stresses Prof Saverio Stranges, Scientific Director of the Department of Population Health. ‘A better prevention can have a major impact on reducing the social and economic burden of cardiovascular diseases.’

It is to this end that the first wave of ORISCAV-LUX survey was conducted from 2007 to 2008 by recruiting a representative sample of more than 1,400 people from the resident population, aged between 18 and 69 years. This first wave revealed that a number of pathological disorders affecting cardiovascular health namely diabetes, hypertension and lipid disorders are currently not diagnosed or treated, and in addition an important number of treated cases remain uncontrolled. For instance, over 60% of study participants suffering from high blood pressure were not aware of their condition.

‘For the follow-up study ORISCAV-LUX 2, we will invite the same participants’, tells Dr Ala'a Alkerwi, project leader and principal investigator at the Epidemiological and Public Health Research Unit of the Department of Population Health. ‘This will allow us to compare and monitor developments in cardiovascular health over time’. Recruitment started in December 2015, following a small-scale feasibility study, and will be conducted until March 2017. Approximately 1,000 subjects are expected to participate. They are subjected to clinical tests on their physical, cardiac and cognitive function and fill in a questionnaire.

ORISCAV-LUX2 is a collaborative work involving also the Integrated BioBank of Luxembourg, Centre Hospitalier de Luxembourg, University of Liège, Ligue Médico-Sociale, Laboratoires Ketterthill and BioLogistic SAS. The project represents a unique opportunity to collect reliable public health data and increase health awareness among the national population. In addition, this national longitudinal databank constitutes a valuable research tool and provides platforms allowing scientists to address relevant questions about cardiovascular and metabolic risk.

The project caught the attention of HRH Tessy of Luxembourg during her internship in the different departments of LIH last summer. ‘The ORISCAV-LUX team did an amazing job in the first phase of the study,’ states HRH Tessy of Luxembourg. ‘I hope that the former participants will demonstrate again the same commitment for this second wave.’

More information can be found on the ORISCAV-LUX website: