Andhra Pradesh

All heart patients should get vaccinated, says cardiologist

All heart patients should get vaccinated and continue their regular drugs. However, when the INR values (International Normalised Ratio for patients on anticoagulant therapy) are high, the physician should reduce them and then ask patients to go for the jab, P.V.V.N. Markandeya Kumar, interventional cardiologist, CARE Hospitals, has said.

He was delivering a virtual talk on “At the heart of COVID: What you need to know,” organised by Andhra Medical College (AMC), as part of the 79th Continuing Medical Education (CME) Update on COVID-19 on Sunday.

Dr. Kumar elaborated on various aspects of the COVID-19 and heart disease. The complications among heart patients due to vaccination are negligible compared to the benefits. One out of 1 million heart patients, who had taken the second dose of the vaccine, could have a risk but it can prevent 5,000 COVID-19 infections. He, however, advised the physicians to avoid platelet transfusions.

He said that increased smoking, sedentary lifestyles, hesitation to go to a hospital and increased psychological stress due to COVID could cause collateral damage to patients with Cardio Vascular Disease (CVD). Quoting various studies, Dr. Kumar estimated an increase of 5 % higher mortality compared to pre-COVID situation.

The post-COVID complaints in patients with CVD are predominantly arrhythmias and conduction disorders. The long-term effects were COVID-related CIRS (Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome) and Coronavirus disease-related Cardiometabolic Syndrome (CRCS). Persistent viremia was seen in patients due to weak antibody response. The other post-COVID cardiac related complaints included chest pain, palpitations, dizziness and fatigue.

CVD pandemic

Dr. Kumar underlined the importance of quitting smoking, improved diet and exercise. Patients should, however, avoid exercise in acute phase of COVID as it could be contra-indicative. He expressed apprehensions that the COVID could ultimately lead to CVD pandemic as an estimated 1 million to 2 million more CVD cases were expected to be seen post-COVID.

Dr. Prasad VRK Chalasani, interventional cardiologist, Florida Heart Centre, who was the moderator, chose to be optimistic and said, “The increased mortality should be seen in respect of the entire syndrome and not just due to the COVID. The most important thing for physicians is not to cause panic about CVD pandemic as fear causes more stress among patients.”

“My idea is only to alert people to modify their lifestyles and minimise the risks. There is a danger of a CVD pandemic, when they ignore the risks and fail to take treatment,” said Dr. Kumar agreeing with Dr. Chalasani.

Earlier, in his opening remarks, P.V. Sudhakar, Principal, Andhra Medical College, introduced the speakers.

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Printable version | Sep 27, 2021 10:45:24 AM |

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