Alarming facts were released at the American College of Cardiology’s 65th Annual Scientific Session that took place in March 2016 by Dr. Samir Kapadia, professor of medicine. According to his many years research, patients who suffer from the most severe and deadly type of heart attack, STEMI, are getting younger and more obese. A STEMI heart attack occurs when one of the heart’s main arteries becomes completely blocked by plaque, stopping the flow of blood. Immediate medical attention can increase the chances of survival, but STEMI carries a high risk of death and disability.
The new study analyzed heart disease risk factors among more than 3,900 patients who were treated for the most severe and deadly type of heart attack at Cleveland Clinic between 1995 and 2014. Analysis of two decades reveals risk factors are on the rise, despite greater awareness. The following was found:
- The average age of patients dropped from 64 to 60 years old between the first five years and last five years of the study.
- Three or more major risk factors for heart attack grew from 65% to 85%
- Obesity rate increased from 31% to 40%, diabetes – from 24% to 31%, high blood pressure – from 55% to 77%
- Smoking rates increased from 28% to 46% (It is the most surprising fact, which is just the opposite to national trends showing an overall decline in smoking rates over the past 20 years.)
The major risk reducing factors that can be easily introduced in your lifestyle are:
- weight reduction
- a healthy diet
- physical activity
- stopping smoking
“Despite increased understanding of heart disease risk factors and the need for preventive lifestyle changes, patients suffering the most severe type of heart attack have become younger, more obese and more likely to have preventable risk factors such as smoking, high blood pressure, diabetes and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease,” – stated in the press release issued on Mar 24, 2016, by the American College of Cardiology.
The study, “An Alarming Trend: Change in Risk Profile of Patients with ST Elevation Myocardial Infarction over the Last Two Decades,” was presented by Dr. Kapadia on April 4, 2016, at the American College of Cardiology’s 65th Annual Scientific Session in Chicago.