Gauri Kaul Foundation organises heart check-up camp at IMHANS

‘Sudden cardiac deaths of youth in Kashmir matter of great concern’
Gauri Kaul Foundation organises heart check-up camp at IMHANS
GK photo

Srinagar, Aug 20: GauriKaul Foundation in collaboration with IMHANS Srinagar held a free heart check-up camp at Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences (IMHANS), SMHS Hospital, here.

Renowned Cardiologist and founder Director, GauriKaul Foundation, Prof U Kaul and his team conducted a comprehensive cardiovascular evaluation and associated comorbidities in patients with substance abuse. Additionally, spot blood sugar, ECG, BP and other investigations were done in these patients.

Prof U Kaul said, "the increasing number of patients with various kinds of substance abuse, and increasing number of sudden cardiac deaths of youth in Kashmir is a matter of great concern. Thus my foundation decided to conduct a free heart check-up in patients with substance abuse at IMHANS Srinagar. Most of the commonly used illicit substances cause heart problems, especially when taken regularly. Even smoking poses a greater risk of cardiovascular disease. Infection of the heart or infective endocarditis is linked with Intravenous substance abuse, that includes opioids like fentanyl and heroin."

"IMHANS, Srinagar is doing a wonderful job and I thank Prof Samia Rashid, Principal GMC Srinagar, Prof Muhammad Maqbool Dar, (HoD), Psychiatry, Prof. Arshad Hussain, Prof Yasir H Rather, IMHANS Srinagar and others for their support to this social cause" Prof Kaul added.

Prof Muhammad Maqbool Dar, HoD Psychiatry stated, "We are immensely thankful for the initiative started by Professor Koul- founder director of GauriKaul Foundation which is a novel idea where people who use drugs were screened for cardiac ailments, they were provided free screening for tests like ECG, random sugar and other investigations. We are looking forward to take this initiative further in a well established association for better health measures which will in turn improve the quality of life of people who are involved into substance use".

On the occasion, Prof Yasir Rather said, "currently we are witnessing increasing rates of Heroin use with predominantly IV use. Heroin use is been seen in adolescents and early adulthood here in Kashmir. IV Heroin use puts them at high risk for developing cardiac issues like endocarditis and also overdose deaths. So all the stakeholders need to work collaboratively and take preventive timely measures to control this epidemic before we lose our younger generations who are our future. I thank Prof U Kaul and Dr. ZubairSaleem for initiating this collaborative process and I hope that this is the beginning of the academic relationship between GauriKaul Foundation and IMHANS, Srinagar".

Dr. ZubairSaleem, Geriatric Consultant and project coordinator said, "Substance abuse has a serious effect on cardiovascular system and includes high blood pressure, irregular heart rate, heart failure and blood clot in the heart leading to heart attack. These camps enabled us to detect any cardiovascular problems well in time and the patients are educated about the serious side effects of these illicit substances, and wherever needed appropriate treatment is prescribed."

Ajaz Rashid, social entrepreneur and CEO GauriKaul Foundation said, "Drug abuse is mostly associated with devastating social impact upon family life, physical and mental health. These type of camps focuses on the adverse effect of drug abuse on cardiovascular health of the patients. We always encourage public-private partnerships for the best interest of patients. I thank whole team of IMHANS Srinagar for their support and encouragement".

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