Dr Rahul Gupta, Consultant, Cardiology, Apollo Hospitals Navi Mumbai
Comorbidities is a health condition that exists with another primary health condition. For example person might be having diabetes and therefore having high cholesterol, so high cholesterol is a Comorbidities.
The important part about the Comorbidities are that they do not add but their effects multiply therefore it is very important to handle every possible comorbidity because they finally leading to bad outcomes. Somebody who has high diabetes, blood pressure and high cholesterol has very high chances of developing heart diseases. The Most Important part about these comorbidities related to cardiac diseases that they are all silent killers For Example Hypertension is a silent killer because it does not produce any prior symptoms in majority of cases. The only way to detect them is to get yourself evaluated at regular interval.
How to proactively identify comorbidities
With respect to heart diseases people most of the times do not understand that there is very long course of a symptomatic phase so the blood pressure will not cause the symptoms for very long time. Preventive healthcare comes into the picture where regular early screenings are imperative to make the underlying risk factors and identified and analyzed before any symptoms start kicking in. Comorbidities are the silent killer so the best way to identify it is to do regular evaluations. Many corporates are conducting various health checkups camps nowadays and blood tests are also very common People can call up the lab and medical people can come to their home and do the blood test so there are lots of health awareness programs available nowadays.
Common Comorbidities that affect risks of heart diseases:
Diabetes and Hypertension are the most common comorbidities/factors that creates a high risk of cardiac diseases. We must look out for people with pre-diabetes (person sugar is slightly more than normal but they are not in the diabetic range) and pre hypertension. Elevated blood pressure and high cholesterol values are very risky and needs to be taken care of by healthy and prescribed diet along with regular exercise. Obesity is another very important cause of cardio vascular diseases which has been observed in young adults as well now.
People with obstructive sleep apnea syndrome are also at risk as they might develop high blood pressure and it increases the insulin resistance which might lead to diabetes. Kidney disease is also something to look out for as heart diseases are closely related to kidney issues as well.
Managing Stress to reduce the risks of CVDs
Stress is nothing but our responding to external stimuli and this is a very important aspect in the modern society. The young population in our country is susceptible to high stress environment with respect to work, personal challenges and physical challenges. It is important to manage stress because it has become a part of our daily life and it should be addressed from a younger age. One must practice yoga, pranayama, deep breathing and meditation every day because it cleanses our body and helps the mind respond to the external stimuli better.
Other comorbidities to keep a check on:
Besides the common ones there are other comorbidities that one must be screened and checked for are Anemia, Thyroid, liver disorders, and Lungs disorders.
For example a person suffering from pneumonia can have a possibility getting a heart ailment or heart attack because once the lung give up on the supply of the oxygen it will directly impact the heart. Similarly in an anemic person the lack of hemoglobin can increase the symptoms of heart blockages and can create greater risks of heart failure if their hemoglobin goes down below a certain point.