Just got off the webinar of Cardinal Santos Medical Center this morning. They dared answer the question "Where do broken hearts go?" and asked several doctors about it. The Philippines experienced high numbers of heart disease in Asia, even beating US numbers as far as occurrence goes, and educating ourselves about the condition is a good thing.
Dr. Rucci Cruz discussed the "Broken Heart Syndrome" and she says it is different from heart failure. There are two types of it namely "Heart Failure with reduced left ventricular function or reduced ejection fraction and Heart Failure with preserved left ventricular function." Prevalence is 1.6 on Philhealth claims in 2014, around 1,648 cases in every 100000 claims. Most common cause for it was Hypertension and hospital stays can last up to one week or 5.9 days. Per year, they also stay there around 3-4 times and overall in hospital mortality is 9%."
She adds "According to studies, causes of heart failure fall into these categories. Coronary Heart Disease, Faulty Heart Valves, Cardiomyopathy and High Blood Pressure. Heart failure happens if your heart can't pump blood and causes it to overflow into your lungs. Often, they get shortness of breath, cough, chest pain, difficulty lying down, swollen ankle and legs, and extreme lack of energy. Risks come from family history, hypertension, obesity, age, and excessive alcohol drinking, diabetes, smoking, inactive lifestyle and sleep disorders."
"Broken Heat syndrome really happens, caused by a response to stress which decreases the heart's ability to pump, mostly it happens to men. Medication can be given to lessen stress as it has increased during the pandemic. Make sure you consult your doctor so they can advise what to do, the next steps and resolve it. ECG's, chest xray, blood tests so they can find its severity. These are all available in Cardinal Santos Medical Center. Heart failure is not a death sentence, you don't have to wait, timing is critical so they can diagnose and reverse it. You have to see your doctor right away."
Dr. Ariel Miranda the Chairman of the Cardiovascular Institute says "Listening to the first two speakers was just like listening to our children. I'm a proud father, they've become the future of our mission. In the 90's the treatments was just beginning and we have definitely evolved. Heart disease is increasing in Asian countries. Of all deaths, 1 in 3 is due to heart conditions. It's a combination of lifestyle choices and poor education/delivery of services. Patients have typical symptoms, but they fear going to the hospitals. They are afraid spending a lot, but treating it early is essential. Patients should go to doctors without delay as heart attack needs to be given attention as soon as it is felt because prolonging it will increase damage and heart failure. It shouldn't be taken lightly."
What do you do when a heart attack happens?
"Fat deposits that clot can be done via Angioplasty. There are less than 50 cath labs in Manila and about 60 Million Filipinos. We need to have preventive cardiology. We are working with Philhealth so they can provide packages that will address these problems so we can reduce the number of Filipinos developing it."
Is this the best time to consult your doctor? Yes, mostly if you are Male and 45 years old and above, you should get checked. Screening should be done 40 years old in US guidelines, a yearly consultation, stress test if possible. The disease doesn't happen overnight, it takes years for it to accumulate especially if you have family history of heart disease. The prevalence of heart disease in the Philippines is larger than our Asian neighbors and the US.
Dr. Ariel Miranda added "Innovations in cardiology has been so much especially in the field of preventive cardiology. In the past few years there have been advancements and there are so much information about it out there. All good for us, heart attack is a silent killer, unless you are shown the numbers, and feel pain, that's important. It only means the body is responding to extreme blood pressure. We are very careful in doing healthy guidelines, sometimes even level 4. "
CSMC is ready and have adapted to the needs for more rooms especially for non covid cases. To ensure the safety of patients, they have separate areas that have other staff to accept them, ensuring the safety as there is screening, they know where to direct them accordingly. Where do broken hearts go? The hospital of course when needed.
Get yourself checked people! Especially if you have family history and fall under the age of 40 and above. Cardinal Santos Medical Center has the doctors and facility to take care of you when it happens.