At much greater risk
The Covid-19 pandemic has hit the Nation ferociously, with continuous health crisis day-by-day, new study reveals that patients with pre-existing heart conditions are highly vulnerable to catch the infection. While various precautions are being taken by the Government to gradually unlock, it is advised for such patients to take additional precautionary measures.
With around six month of the COVID crisis, the data of patients recorded with the infection clearly indicates that the geriatric population is the most highly vulnerable group to mortality due to COVID. The rate of infection is fifteen folds higher in people aged 80 or above and is observed to be around six folds in people above the age of 60 years.
Even though the recovery rate of COVID in India has reached around 75%, yet the mortality is still on the higher side. While out of those patients losing their lives due to the virus, 15% of them have had a history of Cardiac complication. Other co-morbidities including diabetes and hypertension are also an additional factor in patients with pre-existing heart problems to catch the COVID infection.
Attributing to the lowered immunity and decreased speed of body response to tackle inflammation, with increased age along with viral myocarditis to some extent are the major factors for heart patients. It is thus advised for such heart patients to take extra precautions to avoid exposure to Corona virus.
India alone accounts for 6 crore people having some form of heart disease with a mortality rate of 35 lac per annum. India is the present-day leader in the whole of the world so far as the number of heart patients is concerned and the number of heart patients are still on the rise. It is estimated that around 9000 per day lose their lives and the count is still increasing.
From the heart point of view, they should keep the risk factors like Blood Pressure, Sugar at the best. They should avoid all kinds of non vegetarian food and cut down oil to cut down the lipids. Walking can be restricted at home and they should do Yoga and meditation for half an hour on daily basis. To boost up the immunity they should take extra dose of Anti-Oxidants, Vitamin C, Haldi, Amla, Tulsi, eat plenty of vegetables, salads and fruits.
“As far as medications are concerned, two vital advises are to increase the dosage of statins by 10 mg and replace one group of medicine called ACE Inhibitors/ Angiotensin Receptor blockers (ACE-I and ARB). These two groups of medicines are shown to increase the risk of Corona Infection – it is advised to consult your physician before replacement. Those with low Ejection Fraction should also take extra precautions and avoid extra fluid intake.
(Dr.S S Sibia is the Director, Sibia Medical Centre)