New Delhi, Aug. 9 (ANI): Heart disease is on the rise globally with genetic predisposition, high stress jobs and personal lifestyles playing significant roles in the early and long term outcomes for most patients. This dreaded disease often goes undetected for many years until a routine medical check up brings it to light.
Ex-US President George Bush recently fell in the above category when a blockage in one of his heart arteries was detected at an annual examination at the Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas, Texas.
Freddy Ford, spokeman for Bush confirmed that the blockage was confirmed during a regular stress test he underwent.
" During the stress test there were EKG changes, which prompted a CT Angiogram that confirmed the blockage," he said.
Blockages of the artery can be diagnosed if there are symptoms like chest pain or shortness of breath during exercise, or by way of a stress test - either physical exercise on a treadmill, or taking medicine that simulates exercise.
According to Boston based renowned Indian American Cardiac Surgeon and Research Scientist , Dr Mukesh Hariawala, Bush 67, was an avid biker and runner as president, who every spring hosts a 100-K bike ride with U.S. service members as part of the Bush Institute's Military Service Initiative.
Dr Hariawala told ANI that President Bush's healthy lifestyle may have delayed the onset of critical heart disease by several years due to collateral vessel formation, and perhaps also helped in " Fast Tracking " his recovery from his Stent procedure.
He advised millions of Indians, who are susceptible to heart diseases due to genes, and/or unhealthy lifestyles, that by emulating Bush's active regimen, they can delay the onset of the dreaded disease that plagues South Asians.
Talking about the tests that ultimately zeroed in on Bush's condition, Dr Hariawals explained to ANI that " CT Angiogram relies on a powerful x-ray machine and is a reliable diagnostic tool for visualization of the heart coronary tree helping identify plaques and quantify significance of blockages. This can be done as a walk in procedure and patient can be taken up for any elective corrective procedure, if needed.
In the case of President Bush, a critical blockage was found in one of the heart coronary arteries and a Stent was placed immediately after opening up the artery. This restored blood flow in the deprived zones of the heart.
He added that the current optimum therapeutic option with some exceptions , is to place Stents first and conserve Bypass Surgery for a future date as the disease is of a progressive nature.
Dr Mukesh Hariawala who is also a Visiting Honorary Heart Surgeon at Mumbai's Jaslok Hospital also cautioned high profile professionals in India, who often experience significant stress levels, to consider a Non Invasive CT Angiogram as part of their routine medical examination to rule out any underlying early stage coronary heart disease.
He also advocated some simple lifestyle modifications inclusive of a combination of " Yoga and Meditation ", which he said were likely to slow down the progression of heart disease by maintaining an optimum tone of the heart blood vessels which could prevent a future medical emergency.by Dr. Mukesh Hariawala(ANI)