Materia Medica Malaysiana

April 15, 2007

Here’s a new manual on how to treat the heart

Filed under: Uncategorized — malaysianmedicine @ 10:15 am

NST: KUALA LUMPUR: A total of 40,000 patients died of heart diseases in public hospitals last year.
This represents 15.5 per cent of the total deaths in public hospitals.
“By 2010, cardiovascular disease is projected to be the leading cause of death in developing countries. It will be a huge challenge as clinical care is costly and prolonged,” said Health Ministry medical division deputy director-general Datuk Dr Noorimi Morad.
She was speaking at the launch of the revised clinical practice guidelines (CPG) on heart attack and heart failure, released by the ministry and the Academy of Medicine on Friday.
The two bodies had worked on the revised guidelines together with the National Heart Association of Malaysia (NHAM).
The CPG was launched at the 11th National Heart Association of Malaysia Annual Scientific Meeting 2007.
Dr Noorimi said the meeting’s theme, “Cardiovascular Prevention: Targeting Today’s Goal”, was appropriate as the number of smokers, linked to cardiac complications, was on the rise.
“Many of those diagnosed with cardiac problems are between the ages of 30 and 40. This group represents those at their productive peak. Their contribution to their family and the country is essential.
“Some are actually well informed and aware of the diseases but the problem is they fail to adopt a healthy lifestyle until it is too late.”
Dr Noorimi said the ministry planned to set up cardiology centres in Alor Star, Ipoh, Kuantan and Kota Kinabalu by the end of the Ninth Malaysia Plan. Currently, there are 35 centres throughout the country.
The chairman of the committee on CPG for heart failure, Datuk Seri Dr Robaayah Zambahari, said the CPG helped in the management of patients and decision-making as treatments should be tailored to an individual.
“Healthcare personnel should be trained to treat cardiac patients properly while hospitals should develop management strategies to maximise treatment benefits.”
She added the committee was also working on another CPG on the management of women’s diseases, considered another neglected area.
The revised CPG on the management of heart attack comes in two versions — a pocket edition for doctors to slip into their gown pockets and a larger one for the ministry.
Dr Jeyamalar Rajadurai, a committee member of the CPG for heart failure, said the prognosis for heart failure was worse than for some cancers.
“In a large community-based study, about 40 per cent of those with heart failure died within a year of initial diagnosis. About half of all deaths were sudden.”
Prof Dr Sim Kui Hian, another committee member, said the guideline revision was in tandem with current research and findings.
“The CPG is widely circulated in various clinical institutions and will be used by specialists and practitioners as well as paramedics nationwide.”

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