Cardiovascular Diseases – Heart Of The Matter
Cardiovascular Diseases: The Heart Of The World’s Problem
Cardiovascular diseases also known as CVDs are the number one killer globally, contributing to approximately 30% of global mortality, exceeding even infection and cancer. In 2015, it was estimated that 17.7 million people died from CVDs, of which 7.4 million were due to coronary Heart Disease and 6.7 million were due to Stroke. Cardiovascular diseases are referred to as quiet killers, as they often exhibit no signs. The occurrence of CVDs are becoming more prevalent at a younger age group (30 – 50 years old) as the risk factors such as hypertension, obesity and type 2 diabetes are rapidly increasing in today’s environment.
Cardiovascular diseases represent a continuum of disease entities relating to the heart and blood vessels. It does not have to be a death sentence. Medical science has come a long way in the early detection, prevention and management of cardiovascular diseases along with healthy lifestyle choices.
21st Century Approach To Treating Cardiovascular Diseases
Regardless of significant breakthroughs in the understanding of the pathologic mechanisms of the diseases, most of the readily available therapies continue to be at best palliative, since the issue of cardiac cells damaged or loss has actually not yet been attended to. Undoubtedly, most conventional therapy options aim to restrict scar formation as well as adverse ventricular remodeling, but fail to offer direct tissue or cell repair and myocardial regeneration. Usually the problem of cardiac tissue loss is resolved by heart transplant.
However, with the advancement of today’s medical sciences, alternative options, particularly Cell Therapy, has emerged as a novel focal point for the treatment of cardiovascular diseases. Cell Therapy is fast becoming the 21st century approach to treating CVDs and is gaining momentum worldwide. This approach entails the transplantation of healthy and functional cells to boost the renewal of damaged cells and repair injured tissue.
What Are Cardiovascular Diseases?
The term Cardiovascular Diseases is not a single ailment; it covers a large group of diseases that directly affect the heart and the blood vessel system. They include Coronary Heart Disease, Cerebrovascular Disease (the most common form is known as Stroke), Peripheral Arterial Disease, Rheumatic Heart Disease, Congenital Heart Disease and Deep Vein Thrombosis and Pulmonary Embolism. A person can be suffering from several types of cardiovascular (heart) disorders simultaneously. Or there may be several different problems related to a single underlying cause.
Heart Attacks and Strokes are usually severe forms of the condition and are mainly caused by a blockage that prevents blood from flowing to the heart or brain. The blockage is most commonly attributed to a build-up of fatty deposits on the inner walls of the blood vessels that supply the heart or brain.
Two independent risk factors that have a major impact for cardiovascular diseases, are high blood pressure and high blood cholesterol. Other known or associated causes are usually a combination of non-modifiable and modifiable risk factors that include age, gender, genetic factors, ethnicity, smoking, diabetes, physical inactivity, obesity and unhealthy diet.
When detected early, these risk factors can be managed to avoid escalating and manifesting into chronic cardiovascular diseases in the future. Most cardiovascular diseases can be prevented by addressing the modifiable behavioural risk factors and adopting a healthy lifestyle. People with cardiovascular disease or who are at a high cardiovascular risk requires a lifestyle intervention and clinical preventive measures.