All you need to know About Hypertension

What is Hypertension?

Hypertension, most commonly known as high blood pressure is one of the major risk factors for cardiovascular diseases, stroke and even death. The condition is caused when the blood vessels have permanently raised pressure. Each time the heart beats to carry the blood from the heart to various parts of the body, pressure is created by the force of the blood pushing against the walls of the blood vessels. The higher the pressure the harder the heart has to pump.


Results of the Dubai Health Survey 2016 revealed that 3.5% of the total population of UAE suffer from hypertension with 3.2% being males and 5.1% being females.[1] Acknowledging the alarming rise in the incidence of hypertension UAE, it has become the need of the hour to create awareness about the condition and its devastating health consequences. (more…)


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The Management of Coronary Artery Disease (CAD)

Coronary Artery Disease (CAD), where your arteries harden, blood flow is disrupted, and heart muscles weaken, is a concerning, potentially fatal disease. That’s why it doesn’t come as a surprise that doctors are regularly asked if it is possible to cure CAD. The answer you’ll get from most cardiologists in Dubai confirms that heart conditions can’t be cured per se, much like diabetes, or hypertension. They can, however, be managed and controlled.

CAD is a condition that can be effectively managed with the help of lifestyle changes and by minimizing risk factors. Dean Ornish, Founder, President, and MD, Preventive Medicine Research Institute, has written a book in which he elaborates on the patients with CAD who were in line for a heart transplant but who enrolled in the Ornish program and were able to reverse the damage to their heart to a great extent. What does that tell you? It’s evidence that the risk factors for coronary conditions are modifiable. For instance, you can control diabetes, keep your cholesterol under the threshold, and it’ll help prevent the heart condition from worsening.



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The Causes of Coronary Artery Disease (CAD)

Coronary artery disease (CAD) is mostly the result of circumstances which hinder the adequate supply of nutrients and oxygen to the heart by disrupting the blood flow. There’s a network of arteries surrounding your heart. Over the years, because of factors including diseases, plaque build-up, or damage, these arteries get narrowed, making it difficult for blood to pass through in the required amount, thus leading to a lack of blood in the heart, followed by chest pains, shortness of breath, and other similar symptoms.

It can be challenging to diagnose Coronary Artery Disease because it develops over many years and begins depicting symptoms very slowly. In fact, in many cases, the patients come to know of their CAD diagnosis only after they’ve had a heart attack.

The most prominent cause of coronary artery disease is Atherosclerosis, say cardiology doctors in Abu Dhabi.



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The effect of Ramadan on Cardiac Patients

Ramadan is an ideal platform to target year long lifestyle modification, to ensure that whatever health care benefits have been gained during this month, are perpetuated.

Patients with stable Coronary Artery Disease (CAD) can observe fasting during Ramadan without anticipating any major adverse cardiac events while those with unstable disease or recent/pending revascularization should largely refrain from fasting. Previous studies have shown that neither has there been an increase in the incidences of acute myocardial infarction nor has there been an increase in the number of patients hospitalized due to heart failure, during Ramadan.

A fairly small group of patients with cardiac conditions should be advised to refrain from fasting during Ramadan. These include patients with acute cardiac illnesses like Acute Myocardial Infarction (AMI) and Acute Coronary Syndrome (ACS). Patients with uncontrolled HTN requiring multiple dosages during the daytime should be counseled against fasting. Patients with severe congestive heart failure (CHF) requiring high doses of diuretics should also refrain from fasting.

Patients are encouraged to seek medical advice 1 or 2 months before Ramadan in order to adjust their medications if needed. Drugs given thrice daily can be usually changed to single sustained doses.



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Go Low and Take it Slow

What level of sodium becomes injurious to women health?

It is mostly agreed that Sodium is an essential mineral for the body, we all need the daily recommended amount of sodium for a proper functioning of our body like maintaining blood pressure, maintaining a level of body fluids etc. The normal level for blood sodium is 145 mEg/L. Sodium levels higher than this may cause Hypernatremia, a condition that causes symptoms such as confusion, Hyperreflexia, seizures, coma and Neuromuscular excitability. The recommended dietary allowance of sodium for adults in 500mg and not more than 2300 mg per day and between 120-400mg per day for children.

Sodium content in drinking water is not usually a major health concern unless the person suffers from any condition that requires them to restrict the sodium intake. Drinking water may contribute to 10% of an individual’s total sodium intake.

Everything is good when consumed in moderation and sodium intake is no exception. Sodium if consumed in excess quantities may be a contributor to many diseases, particularly for people suffering from chronic conditions like Hypertension. It has been said that sodium in drinking water causes elevation of blood pressure, although it is still not proven. Even in women, high dietary sodium intake can cause cardiovascular diseases and add the same through the intake of water can increase the risk. Increased intake of water high in sodium content during pregnancy can harm the infant.


What kind of issues they can face if they are drinking high sodium water?

Excess sodium consumption will lead to the excess availability of sodium in the blood which leads to restrained blood vessels. This will, in turn, cause the cardiac muscles to thicken which can cause increased risk of hypertension, stroke and CCF (congestive cardiac failure).

Otherwise generally sodium content in drinking water does not pose as much a risk because there are regulations for the level of sodium content in bottled waters and that amount may not necessarily cause adverse effects on the health of an individual unless one is on a sodium free diet.


How precautions woman in Dubai should take?

Sodium content in water is close to negligible, high content of sodium is definitely not good and will harm the body, hence when worrying about excess sodium content, one should think of the sodium content in the food consumed than the water. Because of the hot weather in Dubai, a lot of people generally get dehydrated, hence the amount of water consumed may not be possible to limit but what can be done is reducing the sodium intake in food. Precautionary measures to reduce sodium intake is eating a lot more of fresh food, opting for ‘low sodium’ products, excluding salt from recipes whenever possible, limiting the use of sodium laden condiments like soy sauce, salad dressings, sauces, dips, mustard etc. Instead of more spices and herbs must be used to season the food, salt substitutes should also be used wisely.

Dr.Keya Rahul Shivadey

Specialist Obstetrician & Gynaecologist 

Aster Clinic, Business Bay 

Dr Keya

News Source –

The National - 31st Dec-min


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