Heart disease is affecting Indians early, US study says


MUMBAI: In the Indian pool of heart patients, almost every second patient has high blood pressure, every fourth has diabetes and every fifth had plaque deposits in his/her arteries.

This scientific picture of Indian heart diseases, at a time when prime minister Narendra Modi tours the US, comes from the American College of Cardiology’s newly set up study centres across India. ACC is a not-for-profit medical association that works out guidelines for cardiac treatment that are invariably followed across the world.

The ongoing study provided data of 85,295 patients who clocked 2.11 lakh visits to out-patient departments of 15 hospitals from Mumbai to Patna over the last 26 months. Of these patients — including patients from urban centres as well as rural areas – 60,836 were found to have heart disease.

“It is the most scientific capturing of all-India data,” said Dr Prafulla Kerkar, the head of Parel’s KEM Hospital’s cardiology department. He is also the chairperson of ACC’s Pinnacle registry’s India Quality Improvement Programme.

In the backdrop of World Heart Day on Monday, the ACC data underlines that the average age of a heart patient in India is 52 years. “If one looks at ACC’s American registry, the average age is much higher in the seventies. Clearly, Indians get hit earlier with the heart disease,” said Dr Ganesh Kumar, cardiologist at Hiranandani Hospital in Powai and vice-chairperson of the study.


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