Cardiovascular disease or CVDs are a group of illnesses of the heart and blood vessels within the body. Types of cardiovascular diseases include coronary heart disease, heart attack, stroke, heart failure, arrhythmia, peripheral arterial disease and others. These non-communicable diseases often develop and worsen overtime if poor lifestyle habits are frequent.
Globally, CVD is the number 1 leading cause of death. Approximately 17.9 million deaths occur due to CVDs each year, suggesting that 31% of deaths globally are caused by CVDs. In Cambodia, the rapid urbanisation is increasing poor lifestyle habits which in turn is increasing the risk of heart disease among the population. Cardiovascular disease is the most common Non-communicable disease in Cambodia, causing 21% of all deaths.
Sometimes there are no symptoms and other times are patients can complain of chest and or arm pain or discomfort. Other symptoms include nausea, breathing trouble, numbness, blurred vision and dizziness.
If you or your child experiences any of these symptoms, see a doctor for a test as soon as possible. The earlier you are diagnosed, the earlier the condition can be treated.
Cardiovascular diseases often occur due to the poor supply of blood around the body. This can occur due to the narrowing or widening of vessels and arteries, damage to the heart muscle or valves or the blockage of arteries and veins due to blood clots or fatty deposits.
There are a range of behavioural risk factors that contribute to the formation of a cardiovascular disease. They include:
- An unhealthy diet consisting for foods high in saturated fat, sugar, and salt
- Physical inactivity
- Frequent smoking
- Excessive alcohol intake
- Overweight or obese
- Past heart disease
The effects of these risk factors can be monitored through blood pressure, blood glucose, blood lipids, and overweight and obesity status. A rise in these blood volumes can increase the risk of developing a CVD or identify if you do have a CVD.
- Quitting smoking and avoid alcohol
- Reduce processed foods high in salt, sugar and fat
- Instead increase the consumption of fruits, vegetables and whole grains
- Increase physical
CVD can be treated by lowering blood pressure, blood lipids, blood glucose. This can be done using medications including:
- Angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors
CVD can also be treated surgically through:
- coronary artery bypass
- balloon angioplasty
- valve repair and replacement
- heart transplantation
Lastly, medical devices may be inserted into the body such as;
- prosthetic valves
- Heart failure
- Heart attack
- Brain damage