Friday, January 27, 2012


The 25th Aug issue of the British Medical Journal, has an article by Dr Kate Smolina of Oxford, UK. She and colleagues looked into hospital records and mortality data for UK from 2002 - 2010, to examine the number of heart attack cases and also death from heart attacks.
They found that over the period of 2002-2010, there 861,134 heart attacks in 840,175 patients.
From 2002 -2010, the death from heart attacks had declined by 50% in males and 53% in females, contributed mainly by fewer heart attacks over these periods, and also fewer sudden deaths should heart attack occurred.

This is very encouraging telling us that preventive measures like lifestyle modification, control of coronary risk factors and also perhaps the use of statins and aspirin in the high risk group is beginning to take an effect. Less people were also dying from sudden cardiac death, telling us that the UK resuscitation Council has done a good job of teaching bystander resuscitation and also triaging them effective to the nearest medical centers
Similar trends were also seen in the USA.

Of course these are good things that we must emulate from the West, as it saves lives.
Life style modification is cheap and must be encouraged by the government vigorously. Sometimes the governments approach seems half hearted. Yes, the government does encourage exercise and there are adverts and campaigns to reduce obesity and diabetes. But this is often offset by promoting nasi lemak ( most unhealthy ) and teh tarik as a national food and drink. Both of which are very bad for the body and heart. We have also advised the government to limit the sugar content in carbonated drinks and to have compulsory food labelling so the we know what we are eating. that campaign also seemed to have run out of steam.
I certainly hope that a day would come when we ca also report that over the last 8 years, malaysia has also seen a 50% drop in heart attack rates and death from heart attacks.

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