KOCHI: The rise in heart attacks and strokes in the state in recent times, largely attributable to Covid pandemic, is posing a major concern to medical experts.
Even those who had completely recovered from the disease suffered heart attacks and strokes due to various factors like socio-economic tension, mental stress, and lack of exercise. Youngsters, too, have fallen prey to these conditions.
For Covid recovered, at least three months post-recovery are crucial, since the likelihood of developing serious medical conditions is high.
A recent study published in the Lancet revealed that the risk of heart attack and stroke increased threefold in the first two weeks, following Covid. The risk factors for acute myocardial infarction and stroke, include comorbidities, age, gender, and socio-economic factors.
“Viral infections affect and damage endothelium, the inner lining of blood vessels, which triggersclots in blood vessels causing heart attacks and stroke. Vaccination also has a similar risk as infections but possibly lesser. We come across cases of heart attacks and strokes after vaccination also. Because the whole idea of the vaccination is to induce a mild infection like the process to trigger immunity,” said a Pathanamthitta-based cardiologist .
“Developing such conditions is irrespective of age. Even Covid recovered youngsters below 45 years end up in Intensive Care Units (ICUs) with stroke,” said the cardiologist.
However, considering the grave situation, the Kerala government in its discharge guidelines has recommended three weeks to three months of blood thinners depending on the status and blood tests of cardiac patients.
“For patients suffering from severe cardiac ailments, Covid can cause serious issues. Patients who have undergone surgery and suffering from cardiac problems should be extra careful. For three months post Covid, they are under great risk. But with the help of blood thinners, the risk of heart attacks can be brought down to some extent,” said Vinod Thomas, a cardiologist based in Kochi.