Are you at risk of getting Heart Problems
Every now and then we hear about some heart failure, a heart attack or chest pain. People are always confused when to see a doctor, how to prevent heart problems, what are the symptoms, Am I at a risk of getting it etc. etc. Here are a few questions answered by Dr. Suvro Banerjee, a Heart Specialist from Apollo Gleneagles Hospital, Kolkata which will surely alert our readers with the required information they should have: 1. Who are at risk of getting heart problems?
The prevalence of heart disease increase with age. Presence of diabetes, high blood pressure, high blood cholesterol, smoking, obesity, sedentary habits and family history of heart disease add to the risk of getting heart disease. Women are relatively protected than men from heart attack till the age of menopause.
2. What are the possible causes of heart problems?
Living unhealthy lifestyle such as eating junk food, smoking, lack of exercise, excessive stress may lead to heart problems. Besides, presence of diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol could cause heart disease.
3. What are the symptoms?
Common symptoms of heart disease are chest pain, shortness of breath, palpitation, swelling of ankles, fatigue dizziness and black-out.
4. How can one prevent to get heart problems?
Prevention of heart disease depends on eating a healthy balanced diet, doing adequate exercises, maintaining near normal weight, giving up bad habits such as smoking, control of risk factors such as diabetes, high blood pressure and cholesterol, and periodic heart check-ups after a certain age.
5. How often should a person undergo ECG and at what age?
ECG is an useful screening test to diagnosis heart disease, however normal ECG does not exclude the presence of heart disease. Unless there is symptom of heart disease, ECG may be done yearly from the age of 40 years and 45 years for men and women respectively.
6. What are the first aids a person or his family should take in case of heart attack?
Time is most important if someone is having a heart attack. Guidelines say that if someone is having chest discomfort which does not go off in 15 minutes, the person needs to be taken to the Emergency department of a hospital where he could be assessed by a doctor and ECG could be done without delay. Till ambulance arrives, antacids may be tried and the patient should not exert himself.
7. What are the different heart conditions?
The heart has various components such as heart chambers, muscles, valves, electrical circuit, blood vessels etc. Depending on which component is affected heart disease may be ischaemic heart disease, hypertensive heart disease, heart failure, valve disease, endocarditis (infection of heart valve), septal defects, arrhythmia and heart block.
8. What are the treatment options?
Treatment depends on the type of heart disease. Life style modifications and medical treatment is necessary for most type of heart diseases. In selected cases, coronary angioplasty, bypass surgery, valve replacement, RF ablation, valvoplasty, ICD or CRT implantation may be necessary.
Special Thanks to:
Dr Suvro Banerjee
MD, MRCP(UK), FRCP(London), FRCP(Edin),FICC
Senior Interventional Cardiologist
Apollo Gleneagles Hospital, Kolkata
Phone (personal): 9830024131
Phone (secretary): 9748816407; 9231921171
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