You Are Not Too Young To Be Susceptible To Rheumatic Heart Disease
Young people around the world
seem to be of the opinion that they are too young to be susceptible to heart
diseases. The majority of us consider heart diseases to be either old
age-related problems or a heart condition caused by sudden shocks (thanks to the
movies and soap operas). However, the fact is that the number of heart disease
cases among the population below 30 years of age are increasing dramatically
worldwide, majorly due to lifestyle choices which include but not limited to
alcohol abuse, excessive smoking, obesity, diabetes, and others.
One of the heart conditions that
young people are susceptible to is Rheumatic Heart Disease /Vascular Heart
Disease. It is a condition that is caused due to prolonged Rheumatic fever, a
condition that is caused by group A beta-hemolytic streptococci bacteria, it
causes an immune response in the body that leads to the inflammation of valves
that results in valve damage. These valves channel the blood in our heart from
one chamber to another, when these valves get damaged due to rheumatic fever
they can cause serious problems to our heart and can be fatal.
Rheumatic Heart Disease can lead
to various other complications such as a ruptured heart valve, which would
require required immediate surgery or replacement of a heart valve. In some
cases, an infection in the inner lining of the heart may occur due to damaged
heart valves which are termed medically as Bacterial Endocarditis. It can also
cause complications during pregnancy and can lead to heart failure in pregnant
Symptoms of Rheumatic Heart
Disease/ Valvular Heart Disease
As per the cardiac specialists,
the symptoms or the warning signs in the form of Rheumatic fever start
appearing at a young age of around 10 years to 14 years. Heart specialists
state that a bacteria named group A beta-hemolytic streptococci which is very
common in our country due to poor hygiene causes strep throat or scarlet fever
and these conditions and if left untreated or under-treated can lead to
complications that can cause damage to heart valves. So, it is essential to recognize
the symptoms at an early stage for effective treatment of the condition.
Some of the symptoms of
Rheumatic Heart Disease are:
Dyspnea: In this condition, the
patient suffers from shortness of breath during day-to-day activities or even
Palpitation: In this condition
patients heartbeat gets irregular and is audible to him after eating heavy
meals or during the day to day activity. One should not ignore these symptoms
and should immediately consult a heart specialist.
Chest pain –Discomfort or
severe pain in the chest or heaviness radiating to your left arm and back are
the symptoms of the heart disease.
Vertigo and Syncope – If
you feel that you are moving in fact when you are not is known as Vertigo.
In case one is suffering from any
of the above-mentioned symptoms, one should not worry and should immediately
consult a heart specialist.
Rheumatic heart disease
The diagnosis process for
rheumatic heart disease includes the following procedures:
Throat Culture Test - Throat
culture or strep test is done to detect the presence of group A beta-hemolytic
Blood Test - The antistreptolysin O
(ASO) titer blood test is done to check the presence of strep fighting
antibodies to determine the presence of streptococci bacteria.
Physical Examination -A
medical consultant may check for an audible murmur or rub during a routine
physical exam which is caused by leaking blood around the damaged valve or
inflamed heart tissues rubbing of inflamed heart tissues.
This is done to check the heart’s chambers and valves for any damage.
Chest X-ray. It is done to
check any visible enlargement of the heart.
Cardiac MRI. It is done to
get a clear and precise look at the heart.
It is done to detect any abnormal rhythms (arrhythmias or dysrhythmias) through
small sensors that pick the electrical impulses of the heart.
Once the above-mentioned tests
have been completed, a heart specialist will analyze these reports and even if
you are diagnosed with Rheumatic heart disease, the good news is that this
disease is curable with nearly 100 % success rates.
Recommended treatments for
Rheumatic Heart Disease
The Treatment depends upon the
severity of the damage caused to the heart valve by the disease. Treatment may
require surgery for the damaged valve for the replacement of the valve in case
the damage is irreversible.
If the rheumatic heart disease is
diagnosed in the early stages with minimum damage to the heart valve, Antibiotics
are used to treat strep infections and prevent rheumatic fever thereof. Anti-inflammatory drugs may be recommended to
subside the symptoms such as inflammation to lower the risk of heart damage.
Other medicines may be prescribed as per complications.
Precautions for prevention of
Rheumatic Heart Disease
Since rheumatic heart disease is
caused by rheumatic fever, it can be prevented by taking precautions to prevent
strep infections. Antibiotics, as recommended by doctors, should be used to
treat strep infections, and visiting medical professionals for time to time for
routine check-ups can also help in early diagnosis and prevention. Maintaining
hygiene should be given importance to prevent any kind of infectious disease.
The cardiology team at METRO
hospital has been successfully conducting surgeries to cure as well as replace
the biological valves with mechanical ones regularly. Our Cardiac team lead by the world’s leading
interventional cardiologist Dr. Purshotam Lal has the experience of conducting
more than 1000 surgeries with a success rate of nearly 100%.
We at the metro group of
hospitals are always committed to realizing the vision of providing world-class
healthcare at an affordable cost and to achieve excellence in Healthcare
services by offering exceptional care through state-of-the-art technology.
The Metro Group was established
in the year 1997 by Padama Vibhusan, Padma Bhusan and Dr. B C Roy National
Awardee Dr. Purshotam Lal with the vision to provide world-class healthcare
amenities to his countrymen at an affordable cost.
Metro Group of Hospitals are the
leading healthcare centers in our country boasting an ultra-modern
infrastructure providing multispeciality care by an exceptional team of
healthcare professionals under the leadership of world-renowned interventional
cardiologist Dr. Purshotam Lal. We at Metro hospitals provide multispecialty
care for 35 Chief and Allied-specialities that include Anaesthesiology,
Cardiology & CTVS, Dentistry, Gastroenterology & Gastro Surgery, Internal
Medicine, Neurosciences, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Oncology & Onco
Surgery, Orthopaedics, Joint Replacement & Spine Surgery, Paediatrics &
Neonatology, Physiotherapy Plastic, Cosmetic & Reconstructive Surgery,
Pulmonology & Sleep Medicine, Rheumatology, Stem Cell Therapy, Bariatric
& Metabolic Surgery, Blood Bank, Dermatology, Endocrinology And Diabetes,
ENT & Cochlear Implant, Haemotology, Holistic Medicine, Homeopathy,
Interventional Radiology Laboratory, Laparoscopic & General Surgery,
Nephrology & Renal Transplant, Nutrition & Health, Ophthalmology, Metro
Eye Centre, Psychiatry, Psychology, Radiology, and Urology.
Dr. Purshotam Lal is an internationally acclaimed Interventional Cardiologist who epitomizes the best in professional excellence and service to humanity, especially the poor and the needy.
Dr. Lal was trained at world
renowned medical institutions in the UK, Germany, and the USA. He is fellow of
American College of Cardiology, American College of Medicine, Royal College of
Physician (Canada), British Cardiovascular Interventional Society, German
Society of Cardiovascular Research, Fellow of Society of Cardiac Angiography
and Interventions, USA, etc. He has the unique distinction of pioneering the
largest number of procedures in the field of Interventional Cardiology for the
first time in the country such as Slow Rotational Angioplasty, Atherectomy,
Rotablator, Stenting, Heart hole closure, etc.
He has developed techniques of
Aortofemoral bypass support (partial artificial heart), Opening of tight heart
valves with echo without cath lab. He has performed the first case of
Non-surgical heart hole closure (ASD) with monodisc device and the first case
of Non-surgical aortic valve replacement with core valve, both being the first
time in the world. He is the first investigator of Inoue Balloon Mitral
Valvuloplasty in the Country and his name has been listed in the ‘Limca Book of
A crusader against unethical
commercialization of medical services, he has committed himself to provide to
the middle class, poor and the needy the latest cardio-vascular procedures at
the most affordable cost. In pursuance of his mission, he has established
thirteen state-of-the-art Hospitals and three satellite units. Such is Dr.
Lal’s commitment to his mission that an ever-increasing number of poor patients
have been treated either free of cost or at concessional rates and ‘No patient
is ever turned back for want of money’. He has been named as ‘Creator of
Affordable Healthcare’ by ‘Express Healthcare’, a leading health magazine and
has been a trendsetter for NRIs to return to India to serve the needy people.
Dr. Lal has been decorated with
several prestigious awards:–
2nd Jawaharlal Nehru
International Excellence Award (1990), Rajiv Gandhi Award (1991), Dr.V.V.Shah
Oration Gold Medal by Cardiological Society of India (1992) for his pioneering
contributions in Interventional Cardiology.
Distinguished Achievement Award
of Highest Order by the National Forum of Indian Medical Association (2006-07)
for performing the largest number of angioplasties/stenting as a single
operator in the country.
‘Life Time Achievement Award’ by
Shri Arun Jaitley on behalf of Delhi Medical Association and ‘Life Time
Achievement Award’ by Dr. Lilly Engineer, Professor of Harvard University on
behalf of ‘Times of India’.
Padma Bhushan (2003), prestigious
Dr. B.C.Roy National Award (2004) and Padma Vibhushan (2009) by the President
He has contributed over one
hundred research papers, articles, chapters and authored a book “Cause and
Prevention of Heart Diseases”. He has been a Member at Central Council of
Health and Family Welfare, Expert Committee for medical devices, Ministry of
Health, Govt. of India, Delhi Medical Council, Standing Committee ESI
Corporation – Ministry of Labour & Employment, Govt. of India and Member
Board of Governors, Medical Council of India from May 2011 to May 2013.