Thursday, July 31, 2014

Even the elderly should exercise


Research spanning two decades has found that older runners live longer and suffer fewer disabilities than healthy non–runners. This observation applies to a variety of aerobic exercises, including walking.

A study by authors, from Stanford University School of Medicine, published in the Archives of Internal Medicine has shown that being active reduces disability and increases survival.
There are benefits of vigorous activity late in life. Earlier many experts believed that vigorous exercise would actually harm older individuals. And running, in particular, would result in an epidemic of joint and bone injuries. But this new study proves otherwise.

Two hundred and eighty–four runners and 156 healthy "controls," or non–runners, in California completed annual questionnaires over a 21–year period. The participants were 50 years old or over at the beginning of the study and ran an average of about four hours a week. By the end of the study period, the participants were in their 70s or 80s or older and ran about 76 minutes a week.

At 19 years, just 15 percent of the runners had died, compared with 34 percent of the non–runners.

In the study, running delayed the onset of disability by an average of 16 years. It’s so important to be physically active your whole life, not just in your 20s or 40s, but forever. Exercise is like the most potent drug. Exercise is by far the best thing you can do.

One should take lessons from Yudhishthir in Mahabharata who walked till his death. However a word of caution, if an elderly is walking or entering into an exercise program, he or she should have a cardiac evaluation to rule out underlying heart blockages.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Malaria


  • Malaria is transmitted by the bite of a female anopheles mosquito.
  • The mosquito bite occurs mainly between dusk and dawn.
  • Malaria can also be transmitted through blood transfusion, or via sharing of contaminated needles.
  • Bed nets are good against malaria as the major malarial vectors bite during the night.
  • The behavior of the mosquitoes may differ. Some may prefer to rest indoors and feed indoors in the night. Some may prefer to rest and feed outdoors earlier in the day.
  • Preventive therapy of malaria can be instituted during pregnancy in high risk areas.
  • The malarial mosquito feeds every third day compared to the dengue mosquito, which feeds three times in a day.
  • Unlike the malarial mosquito, the dengue mosquito bites during the day.
  • Malarial fever presents with chills, especially during afternoon.
  • Spraying of the indoor residential walls and ceiling is effective against mosquitos.
  • DDT is widely used as indoor residential spraying.
  • DDT should not be applied more than once or twice in a year on the walls.
  • Mosquito contact with DDT surface would generally save from lethal exposure outside the house.
  • Public must know that spray may require rearrangement of the furniture. Walls may become streaked with chemical treatment and residual odor from DDT.
  • The other alternative is malathion spray.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Press Conference - Focus on youth health education during the 21st MTNL Perfect Health Mela

 Press Conference - Focus on youth health education during the 21st MTNL Perfect Health Mela
Heart Care Foundation of India to focus on youth health education during the 21st MTNL Perfect Health Mela
New Delhi, July 24, 2014: Heart Care Foundation of India, a leading national non-profit organization committed to making India a healthier and disease free nation, today announced its focus on youth education during the 21st Perfect Health Mela 2014. The mass community health event, which is scheduled to be held at the Talkotora Indoor Stadium New Delhi, from 15th -19th October, 2014 will feature a series of interactive consumer based modules focused on educating over 4000 school and college students about the importance of preventive health and hygiene.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Heart Care Foundation of India to focus on youth health education during the 21st MTNL Perfect Health Mela


New Delhi, July 24, 2014: Heart Care Foundation of India, a leading national non-profit organization committed to making India a healthier and disease free nation, today announced its focus on youth education during the 21st Perfect Health Mela 2014. The mass community health event, which is scheduled to be held at the Talkotora Indoor Stadium New Delhi, from 15th -19th October, 2014 will feature a series of interactive consumer based modules focused on educating over 4000 school and college students about the importance of preventive health and hygiene. 

The underlying reason behind this is the belief that by educating the youth from the very beginning, several life-threatening and lifestyle diseases can be prevented in the future. The various activities planned will be spread across five days and will include a series of inter school and college music, art, creative writing, sports and dance competitions; workshops, lectures and entertainment shows all themed around healthy living. In addition to this, all students who have symptoms of suspected heart disease will be provided free screening and consultation through the Sameer Malik Heart Care Foundation Fund, an initiative by the NGO to ensure that no person dies of heart disease because they cannot otherwise afford treatment. 
Addressing a press conference, Padam Shri, Dr B C Roy & DST National Science and Communication Awardee and the President Heart Care Foundation of India, Dr. KK Aggarwal said, “Heart Care Foundation of India is committed to raising awareness about the various health issues in the country and providing solutions for them. As a part of this endeavor we have been successfully organizing the Perfect Health Mela for twenty years now. In its 21st edition, the Perfect Health Mela will lay an increased focus on youth education, for early and timely awareness about preventive healthcare can help reduce the disease burden in our country drastically. A leading example of this is the fact that a heart attack takes about 15-20 years to manifest. So if a person wishes to avoid becoming a victim to it at the age of 45, he must start taking preventive measures in school itself. I am extremely thankful to all our sponsors, partners and the participating schools and colleges for without their support none of this would be possible.” 

Adding to this, Chairman of the Standing Committee South Delhi Municipal Cooperation and President of BJP Delhi, Mr. Satish Upadhaya said, ”We congratulate the Heart Care Foundation of India on this noble initiative and hope to keep continue supporting the Perfect Health Mela in the future as well. Young children are the future of our country and it is our duty to educate them about the importance of health and hygiene from their school days itself.” 

The Perfect Health Mela caters to people from all age groups and walks of life and is attended by over 200 organisations each year including those from the State and Central government, PSUs, leading corporates amongst others. This year’s Mela is being organized in association the NDMC, MCD, Health Department Government of Delhi and MTNL and will feature a series of mini-events being organized starting September 2014 as a build up to the Mela.

Speaking at the press conference renowned Bharatnatyam dancer and Padma Shri awardee Geeta Chandran said “With more and more young people being diagnosed with lifestyle disorders in todays day and age it has become extremely important to raise awareness about preventive measures from the onset of ones education and what better a way to do so than through music, dance and art. I am extremely proud to support the Heart Care Foundation of India in their endeavor to make India a healthier nation and wish them all the best for the future. ”

Adding to this the Medical Officer of Health- NDMC, Dr. PK Sharma; Director of Education – NDMC, Ms. Vidushi Chaturvedi and the Medical Officer of Health SDMC, Dr. NK Yadav in a joint statement said, “Health and hygiene are an extremely important part of a person’s life and must be taught at an early stage, for it is extremely difficult to make a person unlearn his habits and acquire new ones once people are older. We are extremely happy to be associated with the 21st MTNL Perfect Health Mela and hope that through our joint efforts we can help make our country a healthy one”

Others present at the occasion included the Consultant, Birla Vidya Niketan Ms. Tapati Singhi and GM Marketing Corporate- MTNL, Gunjan Sinha.

For more information about the event please visit our website: www.perfecthealthmela.com. Entry to the mela is free for all.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Warning signs of worsening heart failure


If you have heart failure, call your doctor if you notice any of these signs:
  • Sudden weight gain (2–3 pounds in one day or 5 or more pounds in one week)
  • Extra swelling in the feet or ankles
  • Swelling or pain in the abdomen
  • Shortness of breath not related to exercise
  • Discomfort or trouble breathing when lying flat
  • Waking up feeling short of breath
  • Coughing or wheezing
  • Increased fatigue
  • Mental confusion
  • Loss of appetite

Monday, July 21, 2014

Seven Behaviors Cut Heart Deaths

Seven heart–healthy behaviors can reduce the risk of death from cardiovascular disease. In a prospective study, by Enrique Artero, PhD, of the University of South Carolina, and colleagues and published in the October issue of the Mayo Clinic Proceedings, those who met 3–4 of the American Heart Association’s ‘Simple Seven’ heart–health criteria had a 55% lower risk of cardiovascular mortality than those who met no more than two of those practices over 11 years.
Four core behaviors
  1. No smoking
  2. Normal body mass index
  3. Engaging in physical activity
  4. Eating healthfully
Three parameters
  1. Cholesterol lower than 200 mg/dL
  2. Blood pressure lower than 120/80 mm Hg
  3. Not having diabetes

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Do not ignore transient brain dysfunction


Transient ischemic attack or TIA or mini paralysis is a brief episode of neurologic dysfunction caused by lack of blood supply in the focal brain or eye, with clinical symptoms typically lasting less than one hour, and without evidence of acute infarction or brain attack

It is a neurological emergency and early recognition can identify patients who may benefit from preventive therapy or from surgery of large vessels such as the carotid artery.

The initial evaluation of suspected TIA and minor non disabling ischemic paralysis includes brain imaging, neurovascular imaging, and a cardiac evaluation. Laboratory testing is helpful in ruling out metabolic and hematologic causes of neurologic symptoms.

TIA or minor non disabling ischemic paralysis is associated with a high early risk of recurrent paralysis. The risk of paralysis in the first two days after TIA is approximately 4 to 10 percent.

Immediate evaluation and intervention after a TIA or minor ischemic reduces the risk of recurrent stroke. Risk factor management is appropriate for all patients. Currently viable strategies include blood pressure reduction, statins, antiplatelet therapy and lifestyle modification, including smoking cessation.

For patients with TIA or ischemic stroke of atherothrombotic, lacunar (small vessel occlusive), or cryptogenic type, antiplatelet agents should be given. For patients with atrial fibrillation and a recent ischemic stroke or TIA, the treatment is blood thinners. For patients with carotid blockages, surgery is needed.