Heart diseases a cause for concern in India: Expert

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Kozhikode, Nov 28 (UNI) Cautioning that heart disease was increasing on alarming proportions in the country, an expert cardiologist from US today said the country will have 62 million heart patients by 2015 if the government failed to initiate urgent remedial measures.

Of these 23 million will be younger than 40 years and only 11 million will be older than 60 years, Dr Enas A Enas, Director of the CADI (Coronary Artery Disease among Indians) Research Foundation, USA told reporters here.

He said people having heart disease increased from 1-2 per cent to 3-5 per cent in rural and 2-3 per cent to 10-11 per cent in urban areas representing an overall increase of 300 per cent for the past 30 years.

Whereas heart attacks decreased by 65 per cent in the US and several other countries due to identification and nation-wide control of various risk factors such as smoking, high-blood pressure, high cholestrol and physical inactivity, he said.

Dr Enas, who was in India on a five-week lecture tour, said the projected deaths in India from heart attack by 2015, was 2.95 million, of which 14 per cent will be younger than 30, 31 per cent below 40 and 50 per cent younger than 50.

He said quoting the study that Indians get a heart attack about 10 years earlier than Americans, Chinese and other populations impacting on its economy.

He said an estimated 9.2 million productive life years were lost in India in 2005, which was projected to increase to 18 million by 2015.

Stating that diabetes and heart diseases were closely intertwined, he said most diabetics had a fair chance to develope the heart attack in 10 to 15 years.

Similarly, those who survive a heart attack could become diabetics in 10-15 years, he said, adding Indians had the highest rate of diabetes with 60 per cent having the disease by 60 years.

Pointing out that Kerala had the highest rate of diabetes and heart disease in the country, he said the risk of developing and dying from the diseases can be reduced by 80 per cent by broader application of the existing knowledge and resources.

Dr Enas had been invited to give two presentations -- Why Indians were more susceptible to heart disease and the role of diet in increase heart diseases in India -- during his tour, including Kolkata, Delhi and Patna.

UNI

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