The Center for Behavioral Cardiovascular Health (CBCH) currently has a staff and faculty of over 40 highly skilled interdisciplinary professionals (internists, cardiologists, psychologists, and quantitative faculty) engaged in more than 20 different interdisciplinary research studies investigating:
- the behavioral and biological factors that explain the relationship between depression and heart disease
- ways to treat depression in those with established heart disease
- the psychosocial factors and biological mechanisms that contribute to hypertension, and
- alternative approaches to diagnosing and treating hypertension.
Together we are striving to make an important contribution in the fields of hypertension and heart disease and to develop the next generation of cardiovascular behavioral medicine researchers.
More than 81 million individuals in the United States currently have one or more type of cardiovascular disease. In 90% of these cases, cardiovascular disease can be attributed to the factors listed above. This is a health care crisis of immense proportions, both in terms of the quality of life for the individual and the enormous financial burden it places on our society. We believe that the scientific investigation, increasing understanding of the mechanisms involved in this condition, and management of these conditions can be greatly improved by testing integrated models of cardiovascular disease development and by diagnosis and care that recognize the importance of behavioral, psychological, societal, and lifestyle factors for reducing the risks for hypertension, and heart disease.