Gauri Kaul Foundation today inaugurated its state-of-art Gauri Health Clinic at Chanapora, here.
The facility was inaugurated on the eve of 93rd birth anniversary of Gauri Kaul, mother of renowned cardiologist Prof (Dr) U Kaul.
During the short ceremony, which also connected through virtual mode several trustees of the foundation, Prof Kaul said the foundation was tirelessly working on its mission "no more heart attacks" by treating major issues like high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol levels, obesity, smoking, lack of exercise, unhealthy dietary habits and psycho-social stress.
"These risk factors explain more than 90% of heart attacks in all the communities. Treatment should be practical, cost effective with as few tablets administered as possible. Drugs need to be supplemented by counselling regarding lifestyle management, which is equally important," Prof Kaul said.
The centre has all the non-invasive facilities available under one roof using state-of-art equipment. These include "stress echocardiography, very long term ECG monitoring up to 7 days and head up tilt test for syncope."
"The centre has capability of handling emergencies before transferring the patients to a hospital. The heart centre will not deny treatment or investigations to any patient for financial reasons," he said.
Prof A G Ahangar, director SKIMS was the chief guest at the inaugural function
"Gauri Kaul foundation started its journey from Kupwara; we have covered so far seven districts in which we have organized heart camps. Our aim is to cover all the districts of J&K.
"What we have found during our camps is that around 50 percent blood pressure patients have uncontrollable BP despite medication. Same is the case with diabetic patients. Our aim is to help people control their BP, Sugar level, which would automatically reduce risks of heart attack," Prof Kaul said.
On rising cases of heart attacks among youngsters, Prof Kaul said: "The heart attacks are mostly lifestyle related disease. We have to correct our lifestyle. Today's lifestyle is fast, people coming from village to city also adopt the city's lifestyle which involves less mobility, unhealthy and oily food, etc."
He added: "We need to educate ourselves about the health lifestyle. Though there is no shortage of fruits and vegetables in Kashmir, we eat less fruits and vegetables and more rice. Similarly, oily and spicy foods must be avoided. Regular exercise is must to reduce the chances of heart attack."
He said that earlier people in their 80s would suffer heart attacks, "but now people as young as 30 year old are suffering heart attacks, which is mainly because of the lifestyle disorder."
Can COVID also cause heart attack? Prof Kaul replied: "Although COVID is lung disease, it causes blood coagulation disorder which also leads to heart disease. During COVID people have less mobility, no exercise, and lot of stress, etc. which has a direct impact on heart."