The Lebanese Society of Cardiology (LSC) has teamed up with the World Heart Federation and AstraZeneca to launch an awareness campaign about heart failure in Lebanon.
The campaign is titled “Shedding light on your heart health to brighten up your life,” and it addresses the underdiagnosis problem and the lack of public awareness associated with heart failure.
Heart failure is a chronic and degenerative disease in which the heart fails to pump sufficient blood around the body. Nearly half of the patients diagnosed with it die within 5 years of diagnosis.
Although it is a serious condition that affects around 64 million people around the world, its symptoms can be difficult to recognize, which can make it even more life-threatening.
The symptom recognition problem, coupled with a low level of public awareness about the disease, leads to underdiagnosis, costly hospital admissions, and, ultimately, premature deaths among heart failure patients.
This awareness campaign hopes to improve the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of heart failure in Lebanon.
Symptoms of Heart Failure
The most common symptoms of heart failure are:
Shortness of breath
Persistent fatigue and weakness
Swelling in the legs, ankles, and feet
Other known symptoms include rapid or irregular heartbeat, reduced ability to exercise, increased need to urinate at night, abdomen swelling, rapid weight gain, lack of appetite, nausea, and chest pain.
Among the main factors that commonly lead to heart failure are hypertension, cardiovascular disease, and being overweight. Diabetes doubles the risk of developing the condition.
“It’s vital people learn more about heart failure so those at risk or living with the disease can reach out to their doctors, especially once they recognize its symptoms, which include shortness of breath, persistent coughing, persistent fatigue and weakness, ankle swelling, and impaired thinking,” Dr. Malek Mohamad, LSC President, said at the launch of the campaign.
“This is more and more important as there are novel treatments that can reduce mortality and hospital admissions, and provide improved quality of life through comprehensive therapy which offers many more event-free years.”
It’s important that you seek medical attention as soon as possible if you experience the aforementioned symptoms or suspect you might be suffering from heart failure.
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