Family History Of Heart Disease Is A Significant Risk Factor In Acquiring Coronary Artery Disease (CAD)

Precautions must be taken at a young age to prevent premature mortality due to CAD. Statistics indicate that heart ailments, including Coronary Artery Disease (CAD), are responsible for 60% of all deaths in India.

Vani Malik
Written by: Vani MalikUpdated at: Jul 19, 2019 15:46 IST
Family History Of Heart Disease Is A Significant Risk Factor In Acquiring Coronary Artery Disease (CAD)

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More than 52% of deaths caused by heart diseases in the country are in people below 70 years of age. People with a family history are susceptible and therefore, the need of the hour is to raise awareness on following a healthy lifestyle and undergoing timely checkups. 

AD impacts the flow of oxygen-rich blood to the heart, which can, over time, put a person at an increased risk of a heart attack. Cardiac ailments can put a massive dent in the lives of people, especially those who are susceptible to it. While timely diagnosis and treatment are essential, it is also imperative for people to start making healthy changes to their lifestyle from a young age. 

Dr Manoj Kumar, Director and Head - Cardiac Cath Lab, Max Super Specialty Hospital, Patparganj, New Delhi, said, “People who have a family history of heart diseases are more likely to get CAD and have high build-ups of calcium in their arteries. It is thus important that they get their coronary artery calcium levels checked at regular intervals. When the arteries stop supplying blood to the heart, CAD strikes. In this case, the muscles in and around the heart start narrowing. This happens due to cholesterol and plaque build-up on the inner walls of the artery. As the build-up increases, supply of oxygen toheart is reduced, leading to angina or heart attack. Blockage in the arteries can develop from a young age. While some amount of it is common, wrong lifestyle choices can worsen the situation. If you have a parent or a sibling with a case of CAD, you must take precautions right from a young age to avert the risk.” 

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Adding further, Dr Manoj Kumar, said, “The tendency of premature CAD in Indians can be attributed to a genetic predisposition including high levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL-C) or ‘bad’ cholesterol and metabolic syndrome. When combined with an unhealthy lifestyle, these can wreak havoc on the heart leading to early mortality and morbidity. It is, therefore, essential to cultivate healthy habits right at the outset to reduce the risk of acquiring CAD and other heart problems.”

CAD Treatment

For CAD, angioplasty is one of the treatment options available. This is done to restore the flow of blood in the body. In this process, a drug-eluting stent is coated with time-release medicine.

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Some tips to prevent CAD

  • Eat a low fat, high-fibre diet (including plenty of fresh fruits, vegetables and whole grains). Limit your salt consumption to 6 grams a day.
  • Indulge in regular exercise to maintain a healthy weight. Exercise will also help strengthen the heart and increase blood circulation; reduce cholesterol levels, and keep blood pressure under check.
  • Smoking can cause CAD and must be avoided. It is also imperative to reduce your alcohol consumption.
  • Ensure that your BP and cholesterol levels are under control. 
  • Limited consumption of alcohol is suggested. 
  • Proper sleep is essential to recover from daily wear and tear in the body. 

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