Monday, 18 May 2009

Heart Diseases: Aping the West proves costly for people in Andhra Pradesh

By Syed Akbar
Hyderabad: Aping the West in food and lifestyle is proving to be dear to people in Andhra Pradesh with heart diseases linked to food habits emerging as the leading cause of death.
According to a recent survey published by the Central Bureau of Health Intelligence, ischemic heart disease characterised by reduced blood supply to the heart has been killing 13.21 per cent of people in Andhra Pradesh. It is the cause of death in 12.2 per cent of women and 14.08 per cent of men.
Incidentally ischemic heart disease tops the 10 important causes of death in people of the State.
Doctors link the disease to smoking, diabetes, hypertension, obesity, excessive use of hydrogenated fats (vanaspathi) and foods containing high cholesterol levels. So far, ischemic heart disease has been the major cause of death in the US and Europe. That it has emerged as the top killer in Andhra Pradesh is a cause for concern, says senior cardiologist Dr PC Rath.
In patients suffering from ischemic heart disease the flow of blood to the heart is obstructed and thus the heart is deprived of oxygen. This leads to death if not attended to immediately. According to Dr Rath, a little change in lifestyle and food habits will help in controlling cardiovascular diseases.
Cerebrovascular disease (bleeding in brain or cutting supply of blood or oxygen to the brain) is the second leading cause of death in Andhra Pradesh, though it is the third leading cause of death in the West. Cancer or malignancy, which is the second leading cause of death in the West, is incidentally the 10th cause of death in Andhra Pradesh.
While lower respiratory (lung) infections is the third over all leading killer in the State, diarrhoeal diseases occupy the third position in case of women and tuberculosis in case of men. Self-inflected injury is the seventh leading killer both among men and women while asthma and stomach cancer is the eighth major cause of death among men and women respectively, according to the CBHI report.
Road accidents occupy the 10th slot in case of men and dementia (group of disorders relating to brain) is the 10th cause of deaths among women. Cirrhosis of the liver is the cause of 2.19 per cent of deaths among men but incidentally it is absent among women. Cirrhosis is linked to alcohol.
Women tend to be more prone to unintentional injuries than men. Statistics show that 4.09 per cent of deaths in women and 3.81 per cent of deaths in men are attributed to unintentional injuries.

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