Child and Coronary Heart Disease

Author: Davies, Hywel
This book addresses the causes of coronary arterial disease. The inception of the intimal plaque is characterized essentially as the undue proliferation, for any of a number of reasons, of intimal cells, influenced by not only by genetic factors but by mitogens from the environment. There is little evidence of the participation of lipids during the initial stages, though this occurs later to varying degree.

There is good evidence that lesions may appear in the coronary arteries of infants and children, even to the point at times of calcium deposition in ‘normal’ subjects at birth. This, it is averred, points to the involvement of calcifying factors in the environment, notably Vitamin D, calcium and phosphorus. The central role played by intracellular and extracellular calcium is considered, particularly from the standpoint of their perturbation from environmental causes including infant feeding and chemical pollution.

The part played by calciphylaxis, in its original and derived meanings, is looked at with reference not only to end-stage renal disease but across a wider spectrum. The hazards of an environment replete with calcium, phosphorus and steroids are emphasized, while lipids are seen as having mainly an adjunctive rather than a causative influence on the evolution of coronary disease.

The current enthusiasm for increasing the intake of Vitamin D, calcium and phosphorus in the face of environmental surfeit is questioned as being in the best interests of public health.


“ ... This book is a fine piece of work written by a well-informed and wise clinician who has had a life-long interest in the nature and cause of coronary artery disease. In his search for understanding the pathogenesis of the disease, his enquiries have led him to master the related literature in fields as diverse as epidemiology, public health, the biochemistry of sterols, molecular biology and immunology ... The breadth of Dr. Davies’ knowledge and understanding of the subject matter, and the intelligence with which this is presented makes for stimulating reading. He advances his arguments with clarity and is never afraid to challenge the orthodox view, whether this be in the realm of food additives, or research objectives directed to the exclusion of other mechanisms.” – (from the Preface) Sir Terence English, KBE, FRCS, St. Hilda’s College

“ ... This book presents the incisive observations of a lifetime at the forefront of clinical and research medicine pertaining to coronary artery disease. It is written in a comfortable, concise and provocative fashion. It covers an extraordinarily diverse body of literature and observations which will encourage and stimulate new directions in readers’ thoughts and approaches to coronary disease. This is a most unusual book and is a departure from the more typical multi-authored points and recalls the format of many other greats of yesteryear who compiled their observations into a single authored book ...” – Richard R. Liberthson, M.D., Harvard Medical School

“ ... I do not hesitate in commending what has become something of a rarity in medical publication, a single author text of the size and complexity of this one. Many will no doubt want to take issue with some of the conclusions, but few will question the integrity of purpose and presentation.” – E.N. Coomes, M.D., FRCP, Emeritus Consultant Physician, Chelsea and Westminister

Table of Contents

Preface by Sir Terence English, KBE, FRCS
1. Coronary Disease, Ancient and Modern
2. The Beginning of Atherosclerosis
3. Atherogenesis and the Coronary Arteries of Childhood
4. Infant Feeding and Adult Health
5. Cow’s Milk, Human Babies
6. Calcium, Phosphorus and the Artery
7. Vitamin D: Necessary Supplement or Environmental Hazard?
8. Examples of Calcium and/or Vitamin D Excess
9. A Sea of Steroids
10. Cholesterol
11. Other Mechanisms
12. Credo