Exposure to environmental toxins can cause heart diseases in the longerterm

Health Care, Heart Care Foundation of India, Medicine Comments Off

Heart disease is emerging as the number one killer in India

New Delhi, 31 August 2018: Exposure to environmental toxic metals such as arsenic, lead, copper and cadmium are linked to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease and coronary heart disease, as per recent research. Exposure to arsenic was found to be significantly associated with a 23% greater relative risk of coronary heart disease and a 30% greater relative risk of composite cardiovascular disease.

Estimates indicate that India will soon have the highest number of heart disease cases in the world. About 50% of all heart attacks in Indians occur under 50 years of age and 25% in Indians under 40 years of age. Population living in the cities is three times more prone to heart attacks than people living in villages.

Speaking about this, Padma Shri Awardee, Dr KK Aggarwal, President, HCFI, said, “Heart disease and other non-communicable diseases (NCDs) such as diabetes, hypertension, cancer, and stroke are steadily on the rise and will soon take epidemic proportions. The urban population is three times more likely to have heart attacks than those living in rural areas. The reason for this can be attributed to stress, aberrant lifestyle, and hectic schedules that leave very little or no time for physical activity. In recent times, healthy looking adults present with cases of cardiac arrest, stroke and hypertension or were at risk of developing any of these disease at any point in their lives.”

Almost 80% to 90% of premature deaths that occur due to these NCDs in the country are preventable through regular screening, timely medical intervention, and proper disease management. Women especially need extra attention as the symptoms they present maybe entirely different to that of men.

Adding further, Dr Aggarwal, who is also the Vice President of CMAAO, said, “There is a very small percentage of participant with favorable factors for not getting heart problems. This reiterates the need to adopt and maintain a healthy lifestyle to have a healthy heart and this should begin early on in life. As doctors, it falls upon us to educate our patients and make them aware of ways to live a healthy lifestyle to reduce the burden of disease in older age. I teach my patients the Formula of 80 to live up to the age of 80 years.”

Heart disease will be one of the primary points of discussion at the 25th MTNL Perfect Health Mela to be held between 24th and 28th October 2018 at the Talkatora Indoor Stadium, New Delhi.

Formula of 80 to live up to 80

  • Keep lower blood pressure, low-density lipoprotein (LDL) ‘bad’ cholesterol, fasting sugar, resting heart rate and abdominal girth all below 80.
  • Keep kidney and lung functions >80%.
  • Engage in recommended amounts of physical activity (minimum 80 min of moderately strenuous exercise per week). Walk 80 min a day, brisk walk 80 min/week with a speed of at least 80 steps per min.
  • Eat less and not >80 gm or mL of caloric food each meal.
  • Take 80 mg atorvastatin for prevention, when prescribed.
  • Keep noise levels below 80 dB.
  • Keep particulate matter PM 2.5 and PM 10 levels below 80 mcg per cubic meter.
  • Achieve 80% of target heart rate when doing heart conditioning exercise

No woman should die of heart disease just because she cannot afford treatment, or it is ignored

Health Care, Heart Care Foundation of India, Medicine Comments Off
  • This and other aspects were discussed at an event organized by the Sameer Malik Heart Care Foundation Fund
  • The event also marked the celebration of International Women’s Day

New Delhi, 08th March 2018: The Sameer Malik Heart Care Foundation Fund, an initiative of the Heart Care Foundation of India (HCFI) organized an event on its annual day, which aimed at celebrating International Women’s Day by unveiling the stories of over 500 women whose lives were saved due to the work being done under HCFI’s flagship project – the Sameer Malik Fund. Twenty of them were present on the occasion. The basic ideology of the fund is that no person should die of heart disease just because he or she cannot afford treatment.

Chief guests for the event included Kathak exponent, Padma Bhushan Uma Sharma ji and Mr P K Bajaj, Managing Director, Mayapuri group (LOTPOT). Other dignitaries present included Padma Shri Awardee Dr K K Aggarwal, President Heart Care Foundation of India (HCFI) and Immediate Past National President Indian Medical Association (IMA), and Mr Deep Malik, Director of the Foundation.


The last two decades in India have seen a steady rise in incidences of heart attack among women, especially those in the reproductive age. Estimates suggest that of the 10 million deaths annually in India, about two million are due to diseases of circulatory system, and women form 40% of those who die due to cardiovascular issues.

Speaking at the press conference, Dr K K Aggarwal, said, “There is a need to create awareness on the fact that women are equally prone to heart diseases. Although most families can afford diagnosis and treatment for women, health problems in them are ignored until a much later stage. As per law those with an income of INR 21,000 or less are covered under ESI but those above 21,000 are not mandated.  This needs to be made mandatory for those above this benchmark as well, including women of the family. At the Sameer Malik Foundation, we believe that everyone, irrespective of the nature of heart disease, should be accorded timely treatment. Our work is evident in the many women present here today and leading healthy lives post treatment.”

Kali, a 66-year-old female from Nepal, approached the fund. She suffered an inferior wall heart attack and had severe blockages in two of the arteries supplying blood to the heart. Her family income was Rs 70,000 per year. As part of her treatment, a coronary artery bypass off pump surgery was done at the National Heart Institute. The grafts used were one arterial and one venous. This was followed by a pacemaker implant. She is now doing fine.

In another instance, Madhvi, 22-year-old girl from Mathura approached the fund.  She was diagnosed with moderate PDA – an artificial tunnel connecting the lung artery with the brain artery. She also suffered from episodes of breathlessness and one episode of loss of consciousness during her childhood. A PDA closure was done at the GB Pant hospital using Amplatzer ductal occluder (ADO). With this intervention, a surgical scar on the chest was avoided.

Lauding the efforts, Ms Uma Sharma, said, “It is indeed wonderful to know about the work that the Sameer Malik Foundation is doing for the health of women. Not just this, the fact that they provide treatment free of cost comes a sigh of relief to many who cannot afford it. I congratulate them and wish them all the best in their endeavours.”

Another successful case is that of one-year-old Baby Poorvi who was diagnosed with complex congenital heart disease. The heart defects included dextro transposition of the great arteries, large hole in the atrial chambers, and high hemoglobin. An Atrial Switch Procedure (Senning) was done for Poorvi at Medanta, and she is doing fine now.

Mr P K Bajaj, added, “In women, even if they can afford treatment, the level of ignorance gets them delayed diagnosis and treatment. This is something that needs to be addressed at every household level.”

The event was also a time to remember the recent tragic demise of veteran actress Sridevi, who may have suffered a sudden cardiac arrest. Whatever the reason be for her death, it is time to acknowledge, understand, and create awareness on women’s health and the conditions that affect them. Only a timely diagnosis and treatment can help prevent future complications in women

This women’s day, take a pledge to give them a health check-up

Health Care, Heart Care Foundation of India, Social Health Community Comments Off

Health issues often go unnoticed in women as they are not accorded much priority

New Delhi, 7th March 2018: HCFI wishes all women a very Happy International Women’s Day. While one single day is not enough to remind ourselves of the various roles that women play, it is certainly a day to focus on various aspects surrounding them – one of the primary things being their health. Health is usually put at the backburner in case of women – by them or their families – and any health conditions in them generally go unnoticed until it’s too late.

On International Women’s Day, it is imperative to spread awareness on the fact that women too are prone to serious health problems, which if diagnosed and treated at the right time can help in preventing further complications. Some such health issues in them include cancers of the breast and cervix, heart diseases, pregnancy complications, etc.

Speaking about this, Padma Shri Awardee Dr K K Aggarwal, President Heart Care Foundation of India (HCFI) and Immediate Past National President Indian Medical Association (IMA), said, “This women’s day let us take a pledge to give every woman in our lives a health check-up. Women are not diagnosed or treated as aggressively as men. A classic example of this is the fact that even though more women than men die of heart disease each year, women receive only 33% of all angioplasties, stents and bypass surgeries; 28% of implantable defibrillators and 36% of open-heart surgeries, according to the National Coalition for Women with Heart Disease. Women are an integral and indispensable part of any family and therefore, should receive equal attention and care.”

Metabolic syndrome — a combination of increased blood pressure, elevated blood glucose and triglycerides — has a greater impact on women than men. Mental stress and depression affect women’s hearts more. Smoking is much worse for women than men.

Adding further, Dr Aggarwal, who is also the Vice President of CMAAO, said, “Ask all women who are older than 45 for a heart check-up. Make them aware of the need to get timely health check-ups at various stages of life. Ask all young women to do minimum of 60 to 90 minutes of moderate-to-intensity activity (brisk walking) on most, and preferably all, days of the week. Ask women to change their lifestyle to include weight control, increased physical activity, alcohol moderation, sodium restriction and an emphasis on eating fresh fruits, vegetables and low-fat dairy products.”

Some other tips for women from HCFI.

  • Reduce your saturated fats intake to less than 7% of calories. Your diet should include oily fish at least twice a week as a source for omega-3 fatty acids.
  • Make sure you do not take hormone replacement therapy, selective estrogen receptor modulators, antioxidant supplements (vitamin E, C and beta-carotene) and folic acid for primary or secondary prevention of heart disease.
  • If you are 65 or older, ask your GP for routine low dose aspirin regardless of heart disease risk status. The upper dose of aspirin for high-risk women is 325 mg per day rather than 162 mg.
  • Reduce bad LDL cholesterol to less than 70 mg/dL in case you have a very high-risk of heart disease.

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