Cardiovascular prevention: useful at any age

Written by: Dr. Eduardo Alegría Ezquerra
Published: | Updated: 18/11/2018
Edited by: Alicia Arévalo Bernal

Cardiovascular diseases remain the leading cause of mortality and serious complications in developed countries and also in developing countries.

In Spain there is a paradox that there is a high incidence of risk factors, especially high cholesterol, high blood pressure , smoking and overweight. And at the same time the incidence of cardiovascular complications is lower than in other countries with the same or lower burden of risk factors. This has created a false awareness of "Mediterranean" immunity, which leads to suicidal passivity in the face of the epidemic that will undoubtedly come due to the worsening of the lifestyle of young people and adolescents. Although many continue to believe, women are in no way free from this disease. In fact, mortality due to cardiovascular diseases is higher in women, and there is also the circumstance that the diagnostic and therapeutic procedures of recognized efficacy are less frequently applied.

How to reduce risk factors

Nor is it true that from a certain age it is no longer worthwhile to prevent cardiovascular diseases. It is true that the earlier one starts reducing risk factors, the more mortality is reduced, but equally so, at any age, survival is prolonged and limiting complications (stroke and heart failure are reduced) are reduced.

One of the limitations of cardiovascular prevention is that most of the efforts are applied to the high-risk population (with already discovered disease or clustering of multiple risk factors), while the majority of complications will occur in the population considered Of low risk, that rarely accedes to the sanitary system and the prevention.

They recommend that both primary prevention (for the person who has had no complication) and secondary prevention (for those who wish to avoid the repetition of an episode) lifestyle is essential. This lifestyle has three main components, smoking cessation, habitual physical exercise and adequate food. In terms of diet, five aspects are important: the consumption of calories in terms of weight, salt, alcohol, fats and glycemic index. Regarding exercise, it is considered as the key point of cardiovascular prevention and is recommended in all people to different degrees depending on their characteristics and with some particular recommendations. And, in the face of smoking, no amount is acceptable or any substitute either (electronic cigarettes do not help quit smoking and are harmful).

*Translated with Google translator. We apologize for any imperfection

By Dr. Eduardo Alegría Ezquerra

Prestigious specialist in Cardiology, Dr. Alegría Ezquerra has a degree in Medicine from the University of Navarra and a Doctor of Medicine from the University of Navarra since 1975. For more than 20 years he was Director of the Coronary Unit at the University Clinic and between 2009 and 2014 was Director of the Integrated Cardiology Service at the Gipuzkoa Polyclinic. In addition, the advisory committee of the European Society of Cardiology (cardiovascular prevention, lipids and diabetes) and the Management Committee of the Preventive Cardiology Section of the Society Spanish of Cardiology. Throughout his career he has combined his assistance with teaching as an assistant professor and assistant of the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Navarra for more than 35 years. Its multitude of publications and communications to scientific congresses of national and international scope seals a trajectory of first level. He is currently a consultant for the Cardiology Service of the Gipuzkoa Polyclinic and Director of the online educational platform of the Spanish Society of Cardiology.

*Translated with Google translator. We apologize for any imperfection

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