Dear MASALA study participants:
This year has started off with good news for our study and much enthusiasm. We have been scheduling visits with you to ask about your social networks to better understand how they may affect your health. We have completed about 300 out of 900 of these visits already! In April 2015, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) informed us that they will continue to support the MASALA study with a new grant to conduct a second clinical exam. The NIH knows that MASALA has added new and important information about the health of South Asians, and they want us to find ways to improve overall health and well-being with our study. These successes would not have been possible without your active and continued participation and support of our study's goals. Thank you!
This second clinical examination will begin in Fall 2015 and we will remeasure your cardiovascular risk factors, conduct blood tests and a CT scan of your heart to see if there has been any change in your coronary artery calcium score. Because of the complexity of these tests, we will ask you to return to the clinical site where you did your first study exam visit (at the San Francisco General Hospital for the Bay Area participants and at the Northwestern University medical center for the Chicago participants). As with the first clinical exam, we will give you the test results to share with your doctors. For those participants who have completed their social networks visit, you can expect a shorter clinical visit just focusing on the blood tests and CT scan.
Thank you for your continued participation in the study and for contributing a wealth of information to improve South Asian health.
Alka Kanaya and Namratha Kandula