‘Heart diseases responsible for one-third of all deaths above 40 years of age in Karnataka

Heart surgeons of Vikram Hospital Bengaluru provide CPR training to 20 traffic policemen in the run-up to the World Heart Day in the presence of Anupam Agarwal, DCP, Traffic Police ,Bengaluru City.

BENGALURU / September 26, 2018 – Cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of death in India, with the country accounting for one-fifth of all cardiovascular deaths globally. Karnataka shows a similar pattern. More than one-third (37%) of all deaths in people above the age of 40 in Karnataka are attributable to cardiovascular diseases. Worse, their incidence is increasing. More people are dying of ischemic heart diseases today compared to 15 years ago. This was said by renowned cardiologists from Vikram Hospital Bengaluru in the run-up to the World Heart Day.

Said Dr. Ganeshakrishnan T Iyer, CTVS Surgeon, Vikram Hospital, Bengaluru: “Ischemic heart diseases account for the largest fraction of cardiovascular diseases. This is due to poor lifestyle and high incidence of risk factors like hypertension, use of tobacco, diabetes, obesity, physical inactivity, lipid abnormalities, etc. Life expectancy is increasing. In Karnataka, it was 62.5 years and 59 years for females and males, respectively, in 1990, which increased to 71.1 years and 67.1 years, respectively, in 2016. This has resulted in a large aging population with attendant cardiovascular problems such as valve diseases, heart rhythm problems like atrial fibrillation, and heart failure. These heart-related problems are on the rise among both genders across age groups in both urban and rural areas. However, due to improvement in socioeconomic status, the occurrence of rheumatic heart diseases has declined considerably among the people.”

Highlighting recent advances in the treatment of heart diseases, Dr. P Ranganath Nayak, Consultant Cardiologist and Medical Director, Vikram Hospital, Bengaluru, said: “Many advances have been made in recent times in the management of cardiovascular diseases. There are many new medications which have made an enormous difference to the quality of life of the patients and improved their lifespan. In addition to these, many new therapeutic interventions have also changed things for the better. Implantable devices like bi-ventricular pacemakers and implantable cardioverters-defibrillators have improved and saved many lives. In some patients, it is also possible to replace aortic valves without surgery. Cardiac transplantation is also increasingly being adopted.”

Talking about the prevention of heart diseases, Dr. P Padmakumar, Consultant Cardiologist, Vikram Hospital, Bengaluru, said: “India differs from the developed world in terms of accessibility and affordability of cardiovascular care. Its mortality rate from heart diseases is much worse compared to Western nations. Awareness about heart diseases among the people is also very poor. Though most advanced therapies are today available in our country for cardiac care, access to these is extremely limited. Prevention therefore is much better than cure. Lifestyle changes are an integral part of prevention of cardiovascular diseases. A sensible diet and adequate physical activity go a long way in preventing heart diseases. Tobacco use in all forms must be avoided. Early detection and aggressive treatment of risk factors such as hypertension, diabetes and lipid abnormalities are vital.”

On the occasion, top cardiologists from Vikram Hospital Bengaluru gave Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) training to 20 traffic policemen handpicked from several jurisdictions in Bengaluru. The event was attended by Anupam Agarwal, DCP, Traffic Police ,Bengaluru City. 

Said Dr. Somesh Mittal, CEO, Vikram Hospital, Bengaluru: “It is important for all policemen deployed in the field to learn Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR), which can be a lifesaver in many emergencies in which someone's breathing or heartbeat has stopped, such as heart attack, drowning or road accidents. Immediately providing CPR to a victim can double or triple chances of survival after cardiac arrest by keeping the blood flow active. The CPR training given to Bengaluru policemen by our cardiologists included techniques like chest compressions and mouth-to-mouth breathing. We hope this will help them save several lives in future.”

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