Heart specialists to discuss efforts to combat cardio vascular diseases


Cardiologists all over the world pause every September 29 to recognise the crisis Cardio Vascular Diseases (CVD) pose to people and what can be done about it.

Heart specialists at Meenakshi Mission Hospital & Research Centre (MMHRC) joined the global campaign of the World Heart Day Foundation on Tuesday to discuss efforts to combat CVD.

“The objective of the day is to spread awareness and more so during the pandemic year because COVID-19 and heart diseases are a dangerous combination,” said Dr. N. Ganesan, Head of Cardiology.

He sounded the alarm because young adults account for 40 per cent of India’s heart patients. “The average age for onset of heart diseases among Indians is 10 to 20 years less than in other populations,” he said.

“Lifestyle modifications and early assessment of the risks of heart diseases are a must,” he asserted.

According to the WHO, an estimated 17.9 million people die of CVDs annually and India accounts for 31% of global deaths. Heart diseases account for 30% of all health-related diseases in the country, making it the number one killer.

Healthy diet, active and stress-free life, adequate sleep and staying off air and noise pollution were the best ways to connect with one’s heart to keep it healthy, said senior consultant Dr. S. Selvamani. He said these factors during the lockdown restrictions actually accrued unintended health benefits. “There was a 35% decline in hospital admissions due to acute myocardial infection because people were forced into a lifestyle that proved beneficial for the heart,” he said.

But those with a pre-disposed heart condition found themselves at a greater risk during COVID-19 as they did not seek timely medical care. “It resulted in 40% increase in out-of-hospital heart attacks,” said Dr. R. Sivakumar, senior consultant.

Senior cardiologist Dr. M. Sampath Kumar said this year’s theme ‘Use heart to connect’ is significant because it focusses on harnessing the power of digital health to improve awareness, prevention and management of CVDs.

“Tele-health plays a big role in diagnosing heart diseases. During the pandemic, tele-cardiology consultations helped to save lives as we could offer a full continuum of care using technology,” he added.

During 2019-2020, the MMHRC admitted 5,000 heart patients and treated 25,000 heart patients with the help of its telemedicine facilities, informed Dr. R. Krishnan, head of cardio-thoracic vascular surgery.

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Printable version | Oct 18, 2021 9:55:02 PM |

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