Elderly population in need of extra care for preventing mortality due to heart attacks
AZIR KHOBOR, GUWAHATI, JUNE 11, 2022 : Pertaining to the fact that various awareness sessions on heart attacks among the younger population has been the centre of focus, despite a large pool of the geriatric population requiring immediate attention and care. In order to deliberate on the increasing cases of cardiac ailments among elderly, with a dire need to raise awareness on timely intervention and early detection, Max Super Specialty Hospital Saket New Delhi, organised a public awareness session today, at Hotel Landmark, Guwahati.
The session was orated by Dr Balbir Singh, HOD- Cardiac Sciences, Max Hospital Saket, in the honourable presence of other eminent personalities. Age being one of the vital factors affecting the heart health, there are large differences in the elderly patients when they present with acute heart attacks, with greater proportion of co-morbidities, functional disabilities, renal ailments, heart failure and decompensation.
With improving medical facilities, the average life expectancy has increased to over 70 years in India and as a result there are a greater number of patients presenting with acute heart attacks after the age of 65 years. The 30-day mortality rate of the geriatric population is around 18%, which is almost 1.5 times higher than the younger age. Symptoms being different in elderly than the younger groups, they tend to present late to the hospital and thus aggressive management and good family care can save many lives.
“With advancements made in the field of cardiac sciences, more advanced and minimally invasive procedures have benefitted patients with various types of cardiac ailments. Minimally invasive heart surgery (MICS) or Keyhole surgery has grown in popularity mainly due to observed benefits of minimal access surgery, such as cosmetic benefits, decreased pain and reduced surgical trauma and reduced hospital stay. The procedure is ideally best suited for elderly and diabetic patients who have poor resistance to infections as chances of developing infections like post-surgical lung infection or infections due to wounds are eliminated. This procedure makes heart surgery possible for patients who were previously considered too high risk for traditional surgery due to age or medical history.” said Dr Balbir Singh.
Standing at the brink of such a revolution, the latest advancements and innovations promise a healthier and longer life. But one of the greatest challenges is that the diseases associated with the aging population and undoubtedly cardiovascular diseases remain the foremost concern.
“One of the toughest encounters that cardiologists face among the geriatric population is the associated co-morbidities like renal, pulmonary, cerebrovascular and frailty that makes them highly vulnerable for cardiac surgery. But the latest innovations which are guided by these concerns emphasize on minimally invasive interventions making the procedure much safer. Apart from the hardware, in percutaneous intervention (PCI) the emphasis is laid on partially or completely absorbable stent platforms. They are hypothesized to decrease the late stent associated events and likely decreased dual antiplatelet therapy duration”, added Dr Balbir.
It has been often noticed, that in many cases though people are aware of the problems associated with their lifestyle choices, however, they continue doing that. Apart from aging, the major contributors for the problem are irregular sleep cycles, bad eating habits, stress, hypertension, pollution, high cholesterol, tobacco, alcohol and many more. Therefore, this platform was used by Max Hospital Saket as an initiative to spread knowledge and awareness on how people make themselves prone to heart ailments. The experts also shared the ways to notice any early symptoms of heart attack, and reach out to the nearest hospital for medical assistance.