Heart Disease And The Elderly
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The more science tries to conquer diseases and decipher their cures, the more diseases seem to be cropping up in the human body. The race of inventing a cure for each disease that attacks the human body is inexhaustible. The heart is one such organ that often gets affected with age and consequently poses a life threatening situation owing to its vital role in the body functioning.
Although, scientific research has offered immense respite in this field with the successful procedures of treatments such as coronary angiography, coronary angioplasty and thrombolytics; the incidence of fatality due to coronary heart disease or CHD is still high in the elderly. About 80 to 85 percent of the elderly generation in the Western countries reportedly dies of heart diseases. One of the fundamental reasons behind this high mortality rate is that old age does not affect a solitary organ at a time. CHD gets further complicated with the onset of age induced ailments in the kidneys, brain and musculoskeletal systems. Also, at times the elderly cannot withstand major surgical procedures owing to reduced immunity.
Research highlights that men are more prone to heart disorders in comparison to females. However, after the age of seventy, both genders are equally vulnerable to the disease. Common indications of CHD include shortness of breath, giddiness and palpitation. The symptoms of a cardiac arrest may also get altered in the elderly. The person may complain of breathing problem or experience symptoms similar to a stroke instead of the typical sign of chest pain. The elderly are also frequently struck by silent heart attacks. The occurrence of CHD can be prevented provided one follows a healthy lifestyle in youth. Factors such as smoking, hypertension, hyperlipidemia and diabetes are known to increase the risk of coronary heart disease.
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