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Health expert lists down alarming symptoms of heart attack and treatment

The alarming rise in heart attack cases across the country has become a cause for concern not just in older individuals but also among the youth due to current lifestyles and unhealthy habits. Advancements in medical technology have led to early diagnosis, better treatments and survival rates. Dr Vidya Suratkal, cardiologist, Lilavati Hospital and Research Centre, Mumbai lists down alarming symptoms of heart attack for timely treatment.  In recent times, it has become increasingly common for younger individuals to suffer from heart attacks or angina pains owing to poorer lifestyle choices. These choices include engaging in activities like smoking and consuming more processed food regularly while getting insufficient sleep and leading more sedentary lives.  The detrimental effects of work-related stress and high environmental pollution further contribute to cardiac problems. Additionally, there is a notable trend of women facing cardiac issues characterised by symptoms similar to those experienced during a heart attack. This trend can be attributed to various factors including fast-paced urbanisation leading to heightened stress levels at work alongside pressures and expectations from family and peers. Habits such as smoking and alcohol consumption coupled with early menopause onset and diabetes exacerbate these cardiac problems in women.Symptoms of a heart attack There are 2 types of pain - classical or typical pain and atypical pain. Classical pain is commonly confused with acidity. Pain may be felt in the upper part of the abdomen radiating to the chest associated with burping. In the case of a heart attack, this pain goes on worsening and is associated with nausea, vomiting, a choking feeling in the throat, jaw pain, chest discomfort, heaviness in the chest and pain that starts in the chest or the back and radiates to the left arm, associated with restlessness and sweating and exhaustion.  Many a time, people experience only right-sided chest pain and may think is unrelated to the heart because it is on the right side. Remember, pain could occur in any part of the body where there are heart nerves distributed. For instance, a person can have elbow pain while climbing stairs. Sometimes the pain could occur only in the wrists, or interscapular region between the two shoulder blades. Alertness and awareness are two important things among doctors and the common man to detect cardiac problems without any delay. Importance of picking up heart attack symptoms earlyNeglecting or delaying identifying symptoms can result in disastrous consequences like death. Timely treatment will mitigate the size of the heart attack, reduce muscle damage, preserve the pumping function of the heart and prevent rhythm disturbance (irregular Heart Rate). Sometimes, an irregular heartbeat can result in sudden cardiac death The essence is early symptom detection, prompt treatment and management. The dictum is to respect every chest pain no matter what the age is. The diagnosis and treatmentThe person having a heart attack should be immediately taken to a nearby hospital having state-of-the-art facilities without any delay to an emergency room. After doing an Electrocardiogram (ECG), an IV line will be inserted and a troponin I test may also be done. This is a sensitive test that helps to detect if the patient is developing a heart attack in confusing cases. The bedside echocardiography is carried out depending on the condition.  The patient may be shifted to a specially designed modern ICU if the heart attack is acute. Crash cart, defibrillator and Ventilator should be available in the emergency room. Immediate medication should be started to reduce the pain and size of the infarct. Medication to dissolve clots in the blocked vessels may be used as the case may be.  Later, an emergency angioplasty may be performed depending on the case, in a Cath lab to reduce the size of the heart attack within the golden hour. Early detection and early treatment in the form of medical and intervention are important to reduce complications of a heart attack. The patient will also be advised for cardiac rehabilitation for further recovery. The patient and their family members are counselled regarding any doubts & updated about the progress & management regularly. Cardiac rehabilitation is essentialCardiac rehabilitation is crucial. After being discharged, patients often have concerns about returning to their normal routines. They may wonder about their walking abilities, fitness levels, suitable exercises, and the timeline for a full recovery. The rehabilitation process is tailored to each patient's specific needs. For instance, one patient may have a low pumping capacity while another may have undergone bypass surgery. Therefore, a personalised cardiac rehabilitation protocol is developed for each individual. A skilled team of cardiologists and physiotherapists work together to create an exercise plan that addresses the patient's specific condition. This not only boosts the patient's confidence but also allows for gradual monitoring and increased exercise capacity until they can eventually exercise independently. The duration of the recovery process varies depending on the seriousness of the heart attack. It may take several months for patients to regain their health and resume normal activities following treatment and cardiac rehabilitation. Stay vigilant and conscious about cardiac symptoms and maintain a healthy lifestyle. Make sure to prioritise cardiac screenings. Those aged 25 and above should schedule regular health check-ups and consultations with a doctor every month to monitor cholesterol, blood sugar and blood pressure levels. Starting at the age of 35, it is recommended to regularly undergo regular treadmill or stress tests to assess heart health. Seeking counselling from the age of 25 onwards can also be beneficial in preventing heart attacks. In high-risk cases, Calcium scoring of coronaries and CT coronary angiography is recommended after consultation with a cardiologist.

28 September,2023 11:27 AM IST | Mumbai | mid-day online correspondent
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Young women can 'bank' exercise for better heart health later: Study

Women can retain the benefits of exercise during their 20s, going on to have better heart health later in life, according to a new study. Researchers from The University of Queensland in Australia analysed longitudinal data from 479 women who reported their physical activity levels every three years from their early 20s to their mid-40s.  "We wanted to explore whether women could 'grow' their physical activity, like bank savings, for enhanced cardiovascular health," said Dr Gregore Iven Mielke from UQ's School of Public Health.  "It appears they can,” he said.  The study, published in the Journal of Physical Activity and Health, showed women in their 40s who'd been the most active in young adulthood had a resting heart rate, on average, of around 72 beats per minute (bpm).  That's compared to around 78 bpm for the women who'd been the least active from their 20s to 40s. Mielke said while the difference may seem small, previous studies suggested an increase in resting heart rate of even 1 bpm was associated with increased mortality. "A lower resting heart rate usually means your heart is working more efficiently and as it should be," he said.  "These findings suggest that regular physical activity, irrespective of timing, appears to provide cardiovascular health benefits for women before the transition to menopause. It shows us that public health initiatives should be promoting an active lifestyle for women in their 20s and 30s, with the positive health impact still being evident later in life." The researchers said knowing more about the potential effects of accumulating physical activity was important. "Especially for women, as pregnancy and childbearing drastically impact on levels of physical activity," Mielke said.  "Few other studies have used life course epidemiology models to explore the extent to which accumulating physical activity throughout life is important for preventing diseases." This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/ reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

28 September,2023 11:27 AM IST | Sydney | IANS
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Poorly paid men with stressful jobs are twice at risk of heart disease: Study

Men who work in stressful jobs and are paid less are twice at risk of heart disease as compared to men who were free of those psychosocial stressors, a new study has warned. The study, published in the journal ‘Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes’, showed that two psychosocial stressors -- job strain and effort-reward imbalance -- at work may increase heart disease risk. “Considering the significant amount of time people spend at work, understanding the relationship between work stressors and cardiovascular health is crucial for public health and workforce well-being,” said Mathilde Lavigne-Robichaud, CHU de Quebec-University Laval Research Center in Quebec, Canada. The study revealed that men who experienced either job strain or effort-reward imbalance had a 49 per cent increase in risk of heart disease compared to men who didn’t report those stressors. However, men reporting both job strain and effort-reward imbalance were at twice the risk of heart disease compared with men who did not experience the combined stressors. The impact of psychosocial stress at work on women’s heart health was inconclusive. According to Lavigne-Robichaud, ‘Job strain’ refers to work environments where employees face a combination of high job demands and low control over their work. ‘Effort-reward imbalance’ means when employees invest high effort into their work, but they perceive the rewards they receive in return as insufficient or unequal to the effort. Researchers studied nearly 6,500 workers, average age of 45 years old, without heart disease and followed them for 18 years, from 2000 to 2018. Researchers measured job strain and effort-reward imbalance with results from proven questionnaires and retrieved heart disease information using established health databases. “Our results suggest that interventions aimed at reducing stressors from the work environment could be particularly effective for men and could also have positive implications for women, as these stress factors are associated with other prevalent health issues such as depression,” Robichaud said.  “The study's inability to establish a direct link between psychosocial job stressors and coronary heart disease in women signals the need for further investigation into the complex interplay of various stressors and women’s heart health.” Robichaud added. This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/ reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

28 September,2023 11:26 AM IST | New York | IANS
World Heart Day is annually observed on September 29 to raise awareness of diseases related to the heart, and also to work on solutions to mitigate it

Mid-Day Premium Why are more young Indians dying of heart attack

India is witnessing a surge in deaths attributable to heart attacks. The passing of a Class 9 student in Lucknow due to heart failure, serves as a stark reminder of the decreasing age group that has begun to qualify for the incidence of heart attacks. “We are witnessing a sudden spurt of more than 25 per cent deaths in the age group of 25 - 44 years due to cardiac failures,” informs Dr Anita Suryanarayan, a pathologist with Metropolis Healthcare Limited, Mumbai. She adds that this trend is not limited to India only and is being witnessed worldwide. A recent study conducted by the Indian Heart Association reveals that the number of heart attack cases among individuals under the age of 40 has doubled in the past decade. In another instance, a 19-year-old college student from Jamnagar succumbed to a heart attack during a Garba dance session. This unprecedented death spike among younger individuals underscores the need for better preventive measures, increased awareness and improved access to healthcare services. Why are young Indians succumbing to heart attacks? Medical experts have conducted extensive research to discover a connection between Covid-19 and an elevated risk of cardiovascular diseases. The pandemic led to an increase in stress among people who either suffered from the disease or lost a close family member to it, shares Dr Sushant Srivastava, a heart transplant specialist from Artemis Hospitals, Gurugram. Additionally, trigger factors like stress and anxiety got integrated into people’s behavioural responses which increased the risk of heart attack, informs Dr Nihar Mehta – a cardiology expert from Jaslok Hospital and Research Centre, Mumbai. Due to the lockdown, patients could not follow up with their doctors or get access to health care easily during the pandemic, which contributed to increased cardiac problems even amongst those unaffected by the coronavirus. Then there comes inflammation of arteries triggered by Covid-19 infection which can accelerate pre-existing coronary artery disease. Even in younger adults, it can foster atherosclerosis (the buildup of fatty plaque within arteries) and the formation of blood clots, thereby heightening the risk of heart attacks, added Mehta.  Additionally, the psychological and social challenges associated with the pandemic, such as job loss, financial pressures and the shift to work from home, may have led to acute or chronic stress, increasing the risk of heart attacks, remarks Mehta. “It’s truly alarming to witness an increase in heart attacks among children as young as 15. Apart from rare genetic and anatomic conditions, the other potential factors contributing to this increase are the growing prevalence of sedentary lifestyles, poor dietary choices and childhood obesity,” said Dr Ashish Mishra, Consultant Interventional Cardiologist, Wockhardt Hospitals, Mira Road. Mehta opines that people want to be on the fast track to fame and riches. This has led to mounting stressors that young ones are facing from school performance to social media, and pressures to perform at work. These combined factors only contribute to significant stress and anxiety which is already a major risk for cardiac disease and heart attacks. Researchers suggest that sleep apnea, causing abnormal heart rhythms, might also play a role. Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder characterised by brief and repeated interruptions in breathing during sleep, often causing loud snoring, poor sleep quality, and daytime fatigue. It lowers oxygen levels, triggers the fight-or-flight response, and stresses the heart mechanically, informs Suryanarayan. The alarming increase in heart attacks among young people is multifactorial, shares Mehta. Popular celebrities and comedians like Sidhartha Shukla, Satish Kaushik, Reema Lagoo, Krishnakumar Kunnath, Farooq Sheikh and many more succumbed to cardiac failures in the last two years – urging medical experts to dissect the risk factors for heart attack.  What are some of the common risk factors for heart attacks?Over the years, there have been significant changes in the risk factors associated with heart attacks. Traditionally, factors such as high blood pressure, diabetes and high cholesterol, smoking and obesity were considered major contributors to heart disease. Studies have shown a clear link between chronic stress and an increased risk of heart attack, remarks Mishra. Lack of physical activity not only increases the likelihood of obesity but also weakens cardiovascular health over time, making individuals more susceptible to experiencing a heart attack. High Blood PressureThis is a leading risk factor for heart attacks. When blood pressure is consistently elevated, it causes the heart to work harder to pump blood, which can lead to the thickening and narrowing of arteries. This, in turn, increases the risk of atherosclerosis, where fatty deposits (plaque) build up on the artery walls. These plaques can rupture, leading to blood clot formation that can block blood flow to the heart, resulting in a heart attack. Sedentary lifestyleProlonged periods of inactivity can result in weight gain and obesity, which are associated with an increased risk of high blood pressure and insulin resistance. Additionally, physical inactivity weakens the heart and cardiovascular system, making them less efficient at pumping blood and oxygen throughout the body, said Srivastava. This reduced efficiency places extra strain on the heart and elevates the risk of atherosclerosis, the buildup of plaque in arteries. As a result, sedentary individuals are more prone to the formation of blood clots, which can block blood flow to the heart, leading to a heart attack. SmokingSmoking is a major contributor to heart attacks due to its harmful effects on the cardiovascular system. The chemicals in tobacco smoke damage the lining of blood vessels, leading to the development of fatty deposits on artery walls. These deposits sit on the walls and narrow the arteries, leading to reduced blood flow. Smoking also triggers inflammation and oxidative stress in the blood vessels, making it easier for plaque to rupture. When plaque ruptures, it can result in the formation of blood clots that obstruct coronary arteries, leading to a heart attack. Moreover, smoking raises blood pressure, promotes the buildup of LDL cholesterol (the "bad" cholesterol), and reduces levels of HDL cholesterol (the "good" cholesterol), all of which further contribute to the narrowing and hardening of arteries. Covid-19Inflammation due to coronavirus affects the cardiovascular system post-infection, shares Suryanarayan. Notable changes include increased blood clot risk and blood "stickiness.” Elevated blood pressure, possibly related to the infection or its circumstances may also occur. A study, conducted in 2022, estimated that about 4 per cent of people who had Covid-19 developed a heart problem, such as irregular heartbeat, heart failure, inflammation or attacks. Recent studies have suggested that those infected with Covid-19 may have an increased risk of developing cardiovascular complications, including heart attacks. The impact of the virus goes beyond respiratory illness and can extend into other vital organs including the heart, informs Mishra. High Cholesterol LevelsElevated levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, often referred to as "bad" cholesterol, contribute to the development of atherosclerosis. LDL cholesterol can infiltrate the inner lining of arteries, causing inflammation and the accumulation of plaque. Over time, this plaque can become unstable and rupture, triggering the formation of blood clots that can obstruct coronary arteries, leading to a heart attack. Expert steps to mitigate the risk of heart attackIn the face of a rising incidence of heart attacks, individuals can take proactive measures to significantly reduce the risk and prioritise heart health. First and foremost, adopting a heart-healthy diet is crucial. Focus on consuming a variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins (like poultry, fish, and legumes) and healthy fats (such as those found in nuts, seeds, and olive oil). Minimise intake of saturated fats, trans fats, salt and added sugars. A balanced diet helps control weight, lower blood pressure and manage cholesterol levels – all critical factors in preventing heart attacks. Regular physical activity is another essential component of heart attack prevention. Aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic exercise per week. Incorporate strength training exercises two days a week. Exercise helps maintain a healthy weight, reduces the risk of diabetes and enhances cardiovascular fitness. Even small changes like taking the stairs instead of the elevator or going for brisk walks can make a significant difference. Quitting smoking is paramount for reducing heart attack risk. Seek support to quit smoking, whether through counselling, medication or smoking cessation programs. Quitting smoking not only lowers the risk of heart attacks but also offers immediate health benefits, including improved lung function and reduced risk of lung cancer

28 September,2023 11:19 AM IST | Mumbai | Ainie Rizvi
Each year, World Heart Day is observed on September 29 to increase public awareness of cardiovascular disease. Image Courtesy: iStock

2 lakh children born with congenital heart disease in India

In India, 2,00,000 children are born with congenital heart disease, each year. Out of these one-fifth of whom are likely to be in serious condition requiring surgical interventions within the first year of the birth. These surgeries are resource-intensive and expensive, costing between Rs 1,00,000 to Rs 5,00,000 per surgery.   Due to its cost, the treatment is unaffordable for parents to save their children. To address this issue, Rotary District 3141 together with Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital Mumbai is providing quality treatment to children and supporting them to provide low-cost/free-of-cost surgeries to economically disadvantaged families. The project aims to support families who cannot afford the cost of CHD treatment. Congenital Heart Disease (CHD) is one of the most common birth defects prevalent in children. It is a defect that restricts heart development and function since birth, capable of changing the way in which blood flows through a person’s heart. Under the Touching Little Heart initiative, to date, more than 2,700 children have been treated by surgery or interventions for congenital heart defects and 70 per cent of the children have been newborns or infants, a few hours old. Commenting on the initiative, Khuzem Sakarwala, Founder Rotary Club of Bravehearts said, “Our mission is to give a new lease of life to all the unfortunate children who are born with congenital heart defects and provide them with world-class treatment. Our aim is to treat 1,000 more children suffering from CHD by June 2024. Through impactful awareness campaigns and a dedicated software application for patient data management, we aim to efficiently reach our goal.” The Children’s Heart Centre (CHC) at Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital started functioning in 2009, with a dedicated & experienced team of 30 medical and paramedical personnel and 120 dedicated nurses to take care of the child with heart ailments. In these years this centre has grown to be the largest private centre in Western India, delivering care to children with heart ailments from a few hours after birth to older ones and into adulthood. Rotary brings together a global network of volunteer leaders dedicated to tackling the world’s most pressing humanitarian challenges. Rotary connects 1.4 million members in over 200 countries and geographical areas. Their work improves lives at both the local and international levels, from helping those in need in their own communities to working toward a polio-free world. For more information, visit

28 September,2023 09:21 AM IST | Mumbai | mid-day online correspondent
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Why obesity may worsen menopause symptoms in women

Obesity, which has already been associated with a number of adverse health conditions, may also worsen a woman’s menopause symptoms. According to a study, led by an Indian-origin researcher, obesity may also limit the amount of relief women get from hormone therapy -- the most effective treatment to manage a wide array of menopause symptoms. Little research has been done, however, on the impact of comorbidities on the efficacy of hormone therapy during menopause. More specifically, no research is known to exist relative to the effect of obesity on the effectiveness of hormone therapy. The five-year study, involving 119 patients, sought to fill some of that information void by investigating the association of obesity and self-reported efficacy of hormone therapy in peri- and postmenopausal women. The study defines obesity as a body mass index (BMI) of greater than or equal to 30. Women with obesity were more likely to report the presence of hot flashes, genitor-urinary/vulvovaginal symptoms, mood disturbances, and decreased libido. “We studied menopausal symptoms in an underrepresented patient population that’s not often included in women’s health studies. This research can help clinicians serving a more diverse racial and socioeconomic patient population that’s severely affected by the social determinants of health to provide better tailored care and counselling to patients seeking treatment for their menopausal symptoms,” said Dr. Anita Pershad from Eastern Virginia Medical School in Norfolk, US. The study’s results will be presented during the ongoing 2023 Annual Meeting of The Menopause Society in Philadelphia, US. “This is important for healthcare professionals to consider when counselling their patients on the various options for managing their menopause symptoms,” said Dr. Stephanie Faubion, medical director, The Menopause Society. “Considering that more than 40 per cent of women over the age of 40 are classified as obese according to the US CDC, these results could be meaningful to a large percentage of patients transitioning through menopause.” This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/ reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

28 September,2023 08:41 AM IST | New Delhi | IANS
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Doctors call for action against growing burden of heart-related diseases

Lifestyle factors, including neglect of hypertension, high-stress levels, tobacco, alcohol, unhealthy diets, and a surge in obesity are the key factors behind the growing burden of heart-related diseases in the country, said health experts ahead of the World Heart Day on September 29, calling for immediate action. World Heart Day is annually observed on September 29 to raise awareness of diseases related to the heart, and also to work on solutions to mitigate it. Heart attacks have recently been escalating in India, particularly among the youth, raising significant concerns. Heart failure, a condition where the heart cannot pump blood efficiently, also has become a leading cause of morbidity and mortality in India.  With lifestyle changes and early detection, individuals can reduce their risk and lead healthier lives. The medical community urges everyone to take heart health seriously and prioritise preventive measures, the heath experts said. "The most significant contributing factors to heart failure among youth include long-standing ischemic heart disease, valvular heart disease, diabetes mellitus, and hypertension," Saurabh Chopra, Consultant, Cardiology at Narayana Superspeciality Hospital Gurugram, told IANS.  "There is an urgent need to make youth aware of underlying conditions that might spike and result in heart attack and failure, hence they should go for regular checkups and make lifestyle modifications as preventive steps," he added. In its recent report, the World Health Organization (WHO) underscored the grave repercussions of hypertension. The report shows an estimated 188.3 million adults aged 30-79 years live with hypertension in India.  High blood pressure, medically referred to as hypertension, earns its ominous nickname as the "silent assassin" due to its stealthy progression, often evading detection until it unleashes grave health ramifications, such as heart attacks and heart failure.  Early detection of heart ailments is vital and crucial for survival, said Dr Amar Singhal, Senior Consultant, Interventional Cardiologist, Sri Balaji Action Medical Institute.  "The symptoms can include persistent fatigue, shortness of breath, swollen legs, and rapid or irregular heartbeat. Ignoring these symptoms can lead to delayed treatment and worsened outcomes. A young population, under the impression that they are fit and do some workouts, sometimes miss the underlying symptoms that can be fatal at a later stage," he told IANS. The doctors recommended young people to do annual heart health check-ups, particularly check their cholesterol levels and take preventive steps to avoid clogging their heart arteries. It is “even more important for a subset of people whose parents themselves had heart problems before they had turned old -- typically, father below 55 years and mother below 45 years,” said Ranjan Modi, Senior Consultant - Interventional Cardiology at Sarvodaya Hospital, Faridabad.  It is because they are likely to have very high chances of excessive levels of cholesterol in their bloodstream, the doctor explained.  “It is recommended that they should start getting their cholesterol checkup done once a year typically from 20 years of age,” Modi said “Maintaining a healthy lifestyle through regular exercise, a balanced diet, and stress management can significantly reduce the risk of heart failure,” said Dr Samir Kubba, Director - Cardiology, Dharamshila Narayana Hospital.  This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/ reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

28 September,2023 08:18 AM IST | New Delhi | IANS
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Depression, anxiety may signal risk of multiple sclerosis: Research

People are nearly twice as likely to experience mental illness in the years leading up to the onset of multiple sclerosis (MS), new research has shown. MS is an autoimmune disorder in which the immune system attacks the protective sheath (myelin) that covers nerve fibres, disrupting communications to and from the brain. Recognising MS is often challenging for medical professionals because its symptoms are varied and easily mistaken for other conditions. The study, published in the journal Neurology, suggests that psychiatric conditions like anxiety and depression may be part of a prodromal phase of MS -- a set of preliminary symptoms and clues that arise before classic MS symptoms. “For a long time, it was thought that MS only really began clinically when a person experienced their first demyelinating event, such as in the form of vision problems,” said Helen Tremlett, professor of neurology at University of British Columbia (UBC). “But we’ve come to understand there is a whole period preceding those events where the disease presents itself in more indirect ways,” she added. For the study, the researchers examined health records for 6,863 MS patients. They looked at the prevalence of mental health conditions, including depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, in the five years before patients developed classical, medically recognised signs of MS. These MS patients were compared to 31,865 patients without MS. The findings revealed that MS patients were experiencing mental illness at nearly twice the rate of the general population, at 28.0 per cent and 14.9 per cent respectively. Healthcare usage for psychiatric symptoms -- including physician and psychiatrist visits, prescriptions, and hospitalisations -- was also consistently higher among MS patients. Notably, the gap widened in each of the five years leading up to disease onset. “ We see higher and higher rates of psychiatric conditions that peak in the final year before MS onset,” said first author Anibal Chertcoff, Assistant Professor at the University of Manitoba. “While we’re not suggesting that these conditions alone can be a predictor of MS, they may be one piece of the MS prodrome puzzle and a potential signal when combined with other factors.” This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/ reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

27 September,2023 12:29 PM IST | Toronto | IANS
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Over 83 per cent of Indian women experience painful periods: Study

A recent study by, one of India's Period Health Study included responses from over 3 lakh women across the country in the age bracket of 18 to 45 years, who were categorised into 3 groups based on prevalence, severity and bodily changes. The first group included women with Menstrual Disorders, which constituted a staggering 70 per cent of total respondents. The second group noted women with Vaginal Disorders (26 per cent) who had challenges concerning their vaginal well-being, which encompassed discomfort, infections, or irregularities affecting their overall vaginal health and quality of life. The third group included a total of 4 per cent of the respondents who face no disorders. The Pan India survey highlights findings based on age and incidence of PCOS, its prevalence, other disorders including irregular periods, pain severity during periods, and the observed bodily changes faced among the respondents. Deep Diving into the key findings from the report: Age group and incidences of PCOSPolycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) isn't bound by age — it's a disorder that affects women across their journey. As per the survey, 60 per cent of women in the age group of 25 to 34 have PCOS. What came out very glaringly was that 51 per cent of women in less than 24 yrs age group have PCOS. However, what makes this more worrisome is the fact that PCOS affects women’s fertility to a great extent. As per detailed research by the National Institute of Health (Government of India), the prevalence of infertility in women with PCOS varies between 70 per cent and 80 per cent. Prevalence of PCOS and other hormonal disordersPCOS is not the only gynaecological disorder wreaking havoc on the women of our country; the data suggests that whilst 54 per cent of women suffered from PCOS, the second leading menstrual disorder is PID, affecting 17 per cent of the female population. Furthermore, 9 per cent suffered from candidiasis, 5 per cent from fibroid & 1per cent from endometrial hyperplasia. Irregularity and pain severity during periodsWhen surveyed regarding pain during the menstrual cycle, over 83 per cent of Indian women have periods that are painful, which compels them to consume painkillers every month. 58 per cent complained about mild and bearable pain, 25 per cent complained about severe pain and only 17 per cent reported no pain during the course of their periods. Irregular periods with scanty flow were experienced by 76 per cent of women. Nearly half of women resort to using fewer than 5 pads throughout their entire period cycle; whereas a healthy menstrual flow requires the use of a minimum of 10 to 12 pads per cycle. Major body changes faced by women with PCOSWhile dealing with PCOS, women also go through major body issues. Excessive weight gain was observed in 60 per cent of women, closely followed by facial hair growth (Hirsutism) noted in 59 per cent of women. Skin issues like acne were observed in 55per cent of the women whereas pigmentation and other hormonal skin issues were seen in 51 per cent of respondents. Due to certain defined health and beauty standards in society, these issues become a cause of mental and emotional distress in them. Rachana Gupta, Co-founder at Gynoveda, who led the research opines, “The strategically designed period test complemented by the insights from doctors, customers, and respondents ensures accuracy and efficacy. By utilising the insights from this test and combining with Ayurvedic formulations and doctor support, Gynoveda has remarkably impacted over 200,000 lives in just 3 years since its inception and aims to continue the exceptional community work.” Dr Aarati Patil, Chief Ayurveda Gynecologist at Gynoveda, shares that, “Ayurveda considers PCOS as Kapha disorder. Faulty diet and lifestyle habits like lack of exercise, day sleeping, including more sugar, fast food, junk food, and packaged food in the diet lead to excessive Kapha production. Excessive kapha affects digestion and poor digestion gives rise to AMA which can be considered as sticky toxins that block the channels in the ovary. These blockages affect the egg growth and that is how PCOS pathology starts as per Ayurveda.”

27 September,2023 12:05 PM IST | New Delhi | IANS
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Brain signals may determine your memory performance

Ever wondered why you are less able to remember things than your peers? Researchers have now discovered certain brain signals that may explain the difference in people’s memory performance. While it is well known that certain brain regions play a crucial role in memory processes, so far it has not been clear whether these regions exhibit different activities when it comes to storing information in people with better or worse memory performance. To understand, the team at the University of Basel in Switzerland conducted imaging studies on memory consisting of 1,500 participants between the ages of 18 and 35. Participants were asked to look at and memorise a total of 72 images. During the process, the researchers recorded the subjects' brain activity using MRI and then asked them to recall as many of the images as possible. The researchers found that there were considerable differences in memory performance among general populations of participants. In certain brain regions including the hippocampus, a region of the brain that is associated primarily with memory, the researchers found a direct association between brain activity during the memorisation process and subsequent memory performance. Individuals with a better memory showed a stronger activation of these brain areas, the team said in the paper, published in the journal Nature Communications. While no such association was found for other memory-relevant brain areas in the occipital cortex, they were equally active in individuals with all levels of memory performance. "The findings help us to better understand how differences in memory performance occur between one individual and another," said Dr Leonie Geissmann, from the varsity. "However, the brain signals of a single individual do not allow for any conclusions to be drawn about their memory performance," Geissmann added. This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/ reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

27 September,2023 11:44 AM IST | London | IANS
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Genetics may signal risk of hard to find ovarian cancer

Genetics may serve as an early indicator to identify the risk of the hard to diagnose ovarian cancer among women, said experts on Monday. September is observed as ovarian cancer awareness month. It is the third most common cancer in women worldwide and nearly 20,000 women are newly diagnosed every year worldwide. With about 12,000 women dying each year due to ovarian cancer worldwide, it is one of the deadliest gynaecological cancers.  However, due to common and subtle symptoms, early detection is hard. By the time the diagnosis is made, the cancer reaches an advanced stage. "Ovarian cancer is a slow-growing cancer, so it can grow and spread without causing any symptoms until it is in an advanced stage. The symptoms of ovarian cancer can be vague and easily mistaken for other conditions. This is why it is important to observe them right,” Dr Nishith Modi, Consultant - Surgical Oncology, HCG Cancer Centre, Vadodara, Gujarat, told IANS.  “It is a very challenging cancer to diagnose compared to other types of cancer as the symptoms are very non-specific and can easily be attributed to any other common lifestyle disorder such as indigestion and bloating,” added Dr Rubina Shanawaz Z, Consultant Uro-Gynaecology, Gynae-Oncology & Robotic Surgery, Fortis Hospital, Cunningham Road, Karnataka.  The doctors explained that some common symptoms include abdominal bloating or swelling, feeling full quickly after eating, difficulty eating or lack of appetite, pelvic pain, abdominal pain or cramping, the need to urinate more frequently or urgently than normal, fatigue, back pain, constipation, or changes in a woman's period.  According to Rubina, ovarian cancer is one of the most common cancers affecting women in India and its incidence has been rising over the past few years.  “If there are persistent symptoms, then women tend to go for an evaluation and it can usually be diagnosed by ultrasound. Two-thirds of ovarian cancers occur in the postmenopausal age group.  “By the time the patient comes for a check up and imaging is done, it usually gets to the advanced stages. Adhering to yearly ultrasound of the abdomen and pelvis would help in identifying cancer in the early stage,” she said. However, Dr Rashmi Dharaskar from Surya Mother and Child Super Speciality Hospital Pune told IANS that genetics may offer some hope. “Genetics serves as the intricate blueprint of our health journey, and when it comes to ovarian cancer, it plays a pivotal role in shaping risk assessment, guiding treatment decisions, and the path to prevention,” said Rashmi, senior consultant- obstetrics and gynaecology. A recent study estimates that around 23 per cent of ovarian cancers are primarily due to hereditary factors. Genes provide instructions for making essential proteins in our bodies. When genes grow and divide uncontrollably, they can turn normal cells into cancerous ones. The doctor noted “when talking about ovarian cancer, genetic markers like BRCA1 and BRCA2 can signal a higher risk and enable a closer watch. When it comes to prevention, genes not only predict the narrative but also rewrite its course, resolving the mystery of drug resistance and facilitating targeted therapies”.  For instance, in cases with BRCA mutations, actions like closer check-ups are important for early detection which could be followed by surgeries. Knowing these genetic signs helps doctors create personalised treatment plans. “In the world of genetics and ovarian cancer, there's hope-for finding cancer early, designing treatment plans tailored to each person, and potentially minimising the impact of the disease through genetic knowledge,” she said. In addition, risk factors for ovarian cancer include but are not exclusive to family history of cancers in the reproductive tract/breast/colorectal cancers, obesity, not having been pregnant, history of hormone use for fertility treatment/postmenopausal replacement therapy, said Rubina. This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/ reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

26 September,2023 11:16 AM IST | New Delhi | IANS
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