A number of programmes were organised in the city to mark the World Health Day on Sunday. This year the focus being on hypertension, doctors, hospitals and institutions organised events and talks to spread awareness on risks of hypertension.

Speakers at the symposium conducted at the Indus Hospitals on the occasion dwelt on the impact of hypertension on crucial organs of the body including heart, kidneys and on the brain.

Cardiologist, Dr.S.C.Sinha in his opening address said that the number of hypertensive cases will be doubled to 213 million by 2025 from 118 million in 2000. Hypertension is affecting 20-40 per cent of urban Indians and 12-17 per cent of rural Indians.

General physician Dr.D.Srinivas described hypertension as mostly asymptomatic and high BP as the leading risk factor causing death. He elaborated on its assessment and measurement techniques. Cardiologist Dr.Anil Kumar Mahapatro explained on how hypertension acts on heart and blood vessels by weakening and clogging the vessels causing blood clots.

Nephrologist Dr.B.S.Nehru said that hypertension causes renal failure and renal disease can cause hypertension. Blood pressure should be brought down to 125/75 to prevent kidney damage. Eminent neuro-physician Dr.V.Sathyanarayana spoke on paralysis risk factor caused by hypertension which is responsible for 29 per cent of paralytic attacks in India. If blood pressure levels are controlled paralysis incidence can be brought down by 30-40 per cent and heart attacks by 25 per cent and heart failure by 50 per cent. Cardiologist Dr.V.Sujatha suggested simple lifestyle, healthy low salt diet, rich in fruit and vegetables, healthy weight and physical activity can keep blood pressure levels under control. Simple and cost-effective drugs like polypill if taken under a doctor’s supervision can avert cardiovascular deaths.

At a separate meeting organised by an NGO Chaitanya Sravanti at Kota Veedhi, District Collector V Seshadri advised the people to be vigilant on diseases like hypertension and diabetes. The Collector called upon white card holders to apply for Arogyasri Cards at the Collector’s Office and make use of the services provided by the King George hospital in this regard.

KGH retired superintendent Dr.Somayajulu said that hypertension is the cause of several diseases and failure of multi-organ functioning. Chaitanya Sravanti president Dr.Shirin Rehman said that the WHO has given a new slogan ‘Check your BP and control it’. A BP check-up camp was organised on the occasion. IMA along with AIDWA organised a medical awareness camp for women at Arilova. IMA Visakhapatnam secretary P.A. Ramani explained to the women from low income groups the danger posed by the disease and urged them to maintain a healthy diet for the family.

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