Average age for suffering heart attacks is reducing, say Doctors

Namrata Devikar
Friday, 28 September 2018

1.7 million people died due to heart diseases in India in 2016 as per a report

Pune: Doctors from the city noted that there is a need for awareness about heart attack and its symptoms among youngsters as the average age for heart attacks is reducing. Many youngsters confuse heart attacks symptoms for acidity which can permanently affect cardiac health. The doctors were interacting about the alarming increase in cardiovascular disease (CVD) trend on the occasion of World Heart Day 2018 which will be celebrated on September 29.

As per the Global Burden of Disease Report 2016, heart disease is still the leading cause of death in India, killing 1.7 million Indians in 2016. A study from All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) and Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has suggested that 35 per cent of patients who had a heart attack are below 50 and 10 per cent are under 30 years of age.

The term ‘cardiovascular disease’ (CVD) refers to any disease of the heart. Most prevalent cardiovascular diseases include coronary heart disease that is a heart attack and cerebrovascular disease which is a heart stroke. The reasons for the prevalence of increasing CVD cases in the city over the years is because of changing lifestyle patterns like smoking, consuming alcohol, unhealthy diet and limited physical activity.

Talking about the increase in heart diseases in Pune and its symptoms, cardiologist Dr Rahul Patil said that the number of CVD cases in Pune have increased over the years. 

“CVD accounts for almost 2 out of every 5 deaths after the age of 40. With the sedentary lifestyle, the cases of heart problems has seen an alarming increase in the young population. I have come across patients in their 30s, who have heart disease,” said Dr Patil. 

He further added that the symptoms of such diseases tend to vary from individual to individual, and may be absent or atypical in presence of underlying diabetes.

“Increasing breathlessness, giddiness, sweating, or chest discomfort could be symptoms of heart disease. Any person experiencing these symptoms should visit a doctor to ensure timely diagnosis, so that correct treatment can be started,” said Patil.

Highlighting the causes of heart diseases, senior endocrinologist Dr Mohan Magdum said that high blood glucose (blood sugar) can be indicative of diabetes.
“CVD accounts for 2/3rd of all deaths in people with diabetes. If it is left undiagnosed and untreated, it can put one at increased risk of heart disease and stroke. In fact, diabetes and CVD sprout from the common soil, having common antecedents,” said Magdum.

He further added that the majority of CVDs are preventable. “All that is required are a few lifestyle changes. Decreasing the consumption of alcohol and tobacco, cessation of smoking, reducing intake of salt, increasing consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables, taking measures to curb obesity are some of the important steps that can help prevent CVDs. Regular exercise, staying physically active, changing sedentary lifestyle and managing stress also helps keep heart diseases at bay,” said Dr Magdum.

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