Friday, June 16, 2017

Walk for your heart healthy

June 15, 2017
Generally speaking, what a man wants in his life is staying healthy with disease-free and longevity. Thus, Buddha taught about the value of health saying “Health is wealth”. To be able to stay healthy all are to be endowed with correct health knowledge and their way of living should be in a healthy lifestyle. Though man is mortal, all should beware of not perishing before the ripe age. Sometimes, a condition might be asymptomatic. This leads a man to think that he is suffering from just a common illness paying not much attention to what is happening in his body.

Some people come to realize their severe disease such as hypertension only when the stroke left him paralyzed or some realize their diabetes when they suffer chronic wounds that cannot be healed in an orderly set of stages and in a predictable amount of time the way most wounds can be healed. That is to say asymptomatic disease is a cause for unexpected death.

Especially we should take care of our hearts. We use to say “heart disease” although there are different types of the disease. The most common heart diseases are damage of heart valves and artery. One of the symptoms of this condition is chest pain related to hypertension. When the heart tissue does not receive an adequate blood supply, it cannot function as it should be thereby leading to heart decay. If there is a total loss of blood to an area of the heart, that portion of the heart muscle dies but, the heart continues to work but not normally. An infection of the endocardium causes endocarditis. The infection is normally caused by streptococcal or staphylococcal bacteria. Congenital heart disease is a general term for a range of birth defects that affect the normal workings of the heart. The term “congenital” means the condition is present at birth. At any hospitals or clinics it is usual that a pulse of every patient must be checked. Then stethoscope is used to listen to the heartbeat to approximate the condition of the heart. The line between dead and alive is marked by the heart. When someone’s heart stops beating about five minutes, it is generally said that he dies. Thus the heart is a very important organ in the body. The heart is the first functional organ to develop and starts to beat and pump blood at about three weeks into embryogenesis till death.

If you use an average of 80 beats per minute, your heart beats about 4,800 times per hour. That’s a whopping 115,200 times per day. Over the course of a year, your heart would beat about 42,048,000 times! If you live to be 60 years old, your heart would have beaten approximately 2,522,880,000 times. The adult heart pumps about 5 quarts of blood each minute - approximately 2,000 gallons of blood each day - throughout the body along 12000 miles long blood vessels. The heart is divided into four chambers.

Heart is covered by double-walled sac called pericardium. Five great vessels enter and leave the heart: the superior and inferior vena cava, the pulmonary artery, the pulmonary vein, and the aorta. A normal heart has two upper and two lower chambers. The upper chambers, the right and left atria, receive incoming blood. The lower chambers, the more muscular right and left ventricles, pump blood out of your heart. The heart valves, which keep blood flowing in the right direction, are gates at the chamber openings. Heart muscle needs its own supply of blood because, like the rest of the body, it needs oxygen and other nutrients to stay healthy. For this reason, heart pumps oxygen-rich blood to its own muscle through coronary arteries. The heart normally beats in a regular rhythm and rate that is just right for the work the body is doing at any moment. The rhythm changes according to various types of heart disease.

Anxiety and excitement can cause heart disease. Moreover, studies show that smoking increases the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases in smokers compared to non-smokers.

The author of this article did not realize heart blockage due to narrowed coronary artery. He thought tiredness is due to old age. When he met with physician Dr Daw Ohnmar Tun, one of his Dhamma friends, at Tawwin Specialist Clinic, the latter suggested him to take ECG. As soon as she checked the result, the author was admitted to Asia Royal Hospital. With the assistance of Physian Dr Myat Thu, Heart Specialist Dr Than Hteik Aung checked his heart. They found that the arteries were blocked. Immediately, the doctors placed coronary stent and saved his life.

According to his lifestyle, the author had to lift heavy loads, climb upstairs, and walk long journey. At that time he was over 70 and placing stent in the artery is not good for him in the long run. Dr Than Hteik Aung advised him to go under heart bypass surgery. A coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) is a surgical procedure used to treat coronary heart disease. It diverts blood around narrowed or clogged parts of the major arteries to improve blood flow and oxygen supply to the heart. In April this year, the author went to Singapore to receive treatment at the National Heart Centre Singapore (NHCS).

As medical science has been advancing day after day, the artery needed to perform the surgery was taken out from the left foot and the surgery was successful. The surgical team comprising specialists and nurses was led by Heart Specialist Professor Kenny Sin and Dr Darilo De La of NHCS. The team showed their expertise and loving-kindness to the author. After five days in the hospital I was discharged and my sincere thanks goes to Dr Daw Khin Khin Win and those who helped me alot.

Annually, Sing Heart has rewarded the physicians, nurses and staff for their performances since 2011. According to their performances, the winners receive gold or silver medals. The photos of the winners of individuals or in groups are displayed at Room No. 56 of Intensive Care Unit. The author was very much delighted to stay at Room No. 56 where physicians deal with the patients without racial or religious discrimination. Especially, Professor Kenny Sin daily visited the author and encouraged him. The professor advised the author to walk daily and before discharging from the hospital, he came to see him off at the hospital and again told him to walk daily. According to the advice of the professor the author practiced to walk daily and as a result he has been healthy.

The author in his exhortation said that as walking daily is good for health, walk to possess healthy heart.

(This article is dedicated to Heart Specialist Professor Kenny Sin and staffs from the National Heart Centre Singapore -NHCS.)
By Kyaw Nyunt Yee

Ref; The Global New Light of Myanmar

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