India is on the brink of a cardiovascular disaster

By Author  |  Published: 16th May 2018  10:16 pmUpdated: 16th May 2018  10:27 pm

Hyderabad: India is on the brink of a cardiovascular disaster, senior blood pressure (BP) specialist Dr C Venkata S Ram said here on Wednesday. He was speaking on the occasion of World Hypertension Day, observed on May 17 annually. While the situation across the country was grim, Telangana has the second highest number of high blood pressure patients in the country, Ram said at a media briefing at Apollo Health City.

According to a report by the National Institute of Nutrition (NIN), 39 per cent of men and 29 per cent of women in Telangana suffer from high blood pressure. Medak district has the dubious distinction of the highest BP rate in the State, he said. “High BP does not go away by itself. It has to be treated methodically. Currently, India is on the brink of a cardiovascular disaster. The country needs remedial measures to be taken on a war footing, failing which, the ailment will become the country’s number one killer,” Ram said.

Ram is also director of the South Asia regional office of the World Hypertension League, which aims to increase awareness of high BP worldwide. It’s campaign called ‘Know Your Numbers’ purports to make citizens aware of their BP number, through which high BP can be easily detected and controlled. Only half the people suffering from hypertension know of their condition, and in some communities, the awareness of high BP is as low as 10 per cent of the patients, he said.

Young affected too

Young individuals in the city are also falling prey to high BP, Ram said, adding that the condition is now alarming and a cause for great concern. “The definition of hypertension has changed now. BP above 130/80 is considered hypertension now, instead of the earlier number 140/90. Now, even the young are at risk of stroke, paralysis, kidney failure, etc. BP should be checked even among the young, in schools, colleges and at workplaces,” he said.