Monday, February 08, 2010


As physicians, we must keep emphasizing the importance of lifestyle modification, in any situation that can help to maintain good health. The cliche that " Health is Wealth" cannot be overemphasized. You may like to know that even in such a severe lifethreatening disorder like acute coronary syndrome, life-style modification can show a difference in 6 months.
This fact was highlighted in a paper published in the Feb1 issue of circulation. The work is done by researchers in McMaster University, Hamilton, led by Dr Clara Chow. The paper is entitled, " Association of diet, exercise, and smoking modification with risk of early cardiovascular events after acute coronary syndromes". Circulation 2010; 121:750-758. They studied 18,809 patients from 41 countries who were hospitalised and treated for acute cironary syndrome. Before discharge, the patients were all counselled regarding the importantce of lifestyle modification, including diet, exercise and stop smoking. At the 6 months followup re-evluation, they found that about 65 % had been compliant. One third never stopped smoking, and 30% never adhere to diet or exercise regimes. But of those who adhered to the regime of stop smoke, diet and exercise, there was a 50% less incidence of heart attacks, strokes and death. What they also discovered was that patients post-acute coronary syndrome were more likely to take medications ( ACE-I, statins, anti-platelets ) then adhere to life-style modifications.
In a way, the studies show that there is hope. Post-ACS, we can help ourselves but changing our lifestyle ( less expensive and safer ). Similarly, there is dismay, that many would prefer the "pills" to helping themselves. There in lies the paradox of the modern man. Taking drugs is the easy way out. Helping yourself is tough. I will leave it to others.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

We should consider that with our patients..Good post