We all have to die of something and if you are between 50 and 60 years of age you are most likely to die from a coronary occlusion. That’s not a coronary ‘conclusion’ but the end result is the same. And it is an unfortunate statistical truth that the 50-60 year decade is the most dangerous.
The simple term ‘Heart Attack’ covers the situation where the artery supplying the heart with the oxygen rich blood is blocked and the heart muscle then dies. If you are lucky it may be just a partial blockage and you have some minor heart attacks before the final, fatal one, which we call a ‘Myocardial infarction’.
Fortunately, if you can catch the condition early enough you may live to get the three score years and ten which we all expect as our birthright. However you have to recognize some the early signs first.
The first step is to look at yourself. Are you an overweight smoker? If so, stop smoking now. Stopping smoking is the best thing you can do to give yourself a future with good health. Leave exercise till you have shed some kilograms.
The second step is to note any chest pains, particularly pains that come on with exercise, this we call ‘angina’. Once again, now is not the time to take up exercise at the local gymnasium.
Likewise breathing difficulties with exercise or any irregular heart beat which we call ‘palpitations’. Is your blood pressure high? Have you had it checked?
After that, it becomes necessary to examine your blood where we look for signs of diabetes, liver disease, blood fats and kidney disease. All of these conditions can lead to coronary artery disease and increase your chances of having an infarction (death of heart muscle).
That’s not the end of it, there are more risk factors all you 50-60 year olds need to check. A chest X-Ray can spot enlargement of the heart as well as calcium deposits in your aorta, the main artery leading from the heart. An Electro Cardiogram (EKG) can show if the heart muscle is functioning correctly. Forewarned is forearmed.
Another factor that should be explored, is Family History. The tendency towards Myocardial Infarction runs in families, especially the male members. Ask around in the family, it could be very important.
If you have any of the above symptoms or conditions, you very well may have coronary artery disease, a leading cause of myocardial infarction.
As a sensible precaution, you should see your doctor for evaluation of the condition of your coronary arteries. There is a promotion this month which includes
- Coronary artery CT scan and Electrocardiogram
- Kidney and liver function tests
- Physical examination by our cardiologist and vital signs.
If you are between 50-60 it is well worth your while looking at this promotion. Contact the Bangkok Hospital Pattaya Heart Center Tel. 0 3890 9229.