The recent statistical data has firmly indicated that the epidemic trend of cardiovascular disease in Thai population is continued rising increasingly every year. Potentially risk factors to develop cardiovascular diseases include:
- Hypertension (high blood pressure);
- Being obese or overweight;
- Physical inactivity;
- The consumption of high fat-food that is strongly associated with the development of dyslipidemia and atherosclerosis; and
- Other unhealthy lifestyles habits e.g. cigarette smoking and alcohol consumption.
More importantly, cardiovascular disease has become more complex and challenging, resulting in an elevated disease severity with life-threatening complications. With years of expertise in comprehensive cardiovascular care, Bangkok Heart Hospital has realized that the importance of early detection and effective treatments including non-surgical and surgical approaches must be clearly addressed in order to create disease awareness among people who are at greater risks to develop such conditions in the future.
Dr. Pradub Sukhum, Senior Hospital Director of Bangkok Heart Hospital reveals that the number of patients diagnosed with cardiovascular disease has continuously increased, especially in Bangkok with the incidence up to 40%. Interestingly, this trend seems to be continued in the future due to the lifestyle-related activities. Recent clinical researches have additionally suggested that cardiovascular disease seems to be more complicated and difficult to manage successfully.
Complex cardiovascular disease often involves accurate and timely diagnosis supported by cutting-edge technology and highly experienced and well-trained cardiologists and cardiac surgeons as well as multidisciplinary team specialized in cardiac care.
Due to the advancements of surgical techniques, minimally invasive heart surgery has emerged and brought superior advantages, compared to an open heart surgery which is the conventional approach. Minimally invasive heart surgery includes robot-assisted heart surgery, video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery or surgery through a small incision in the chest (direct less invasive access heart surgery). In all types of minimally invasive procedures, cardiac surgeons reach the heart through small incisions between the ribs of chest, rather than having an open cut in the chest which is required in open heart surgery. The benefits of minimally invasive heart surgery might include smaller incisions, less pain, lowered postoperative complications and faster recovery, resulting in a shorter hospital stay and a quick return to daily life and activities. More importantly, combined with early and accurate diagnosis, minimally invasive heart surgery, if performed in time, has rescued patients diagnosed with aortic aneurysms and heart valve disease with significantly improved survival rates.
Dr. Taweesak Chotivatanapong, cardiothoracic surgeon of Bangkok Heart Hospital indicates that heart valve disease has been commonly found in patients aged over 40. Heart valve disease may present at birth (congenital). It can also occur in adults due to several causes and conditions such as infections (rheumatic heart disease), degenerative valve disease, irregular immune responses, calcium deposits on the valve, valve flaps bulging back (regurgitation), valve flaps becoming thick, stiff or fuse together (valve stenosis) and myocardial infarction which occurs when blood flow decreases or stops to a part of the heart, causing damage to the heart muscle as well as other heart conditions that lead to improper valve functions and reduced blood flow through the valves. In heart valve disease, one or more of the four valves in the heart do not function properly, either to close or to open. As a result, this condition causes the disruption of the blood flow through the heart to the body. If left untreated, it might lead to fatal complications such as cardiac sudden death. Although some patients with heart valve disease might not exhibit any symptoms for many years, common signs and symptoms of heart valve disease may include:
- Shortness of breath, particularly after activities or exertion;
- Tiring easily or fatigue;
- Frequent fainting; and
- Irregular heartbeat or abnormal sound of the heart.
Among four valves, mitral valve and aortic valve (left side of the heart) are the most common heart valve conditions. These common valve diseases are usually found in the elderly, rather than children. After diagnosis, treatments will be provided accordingly. There are two treatment options; valve replacement and valve repair. A minimally invasive aortic valve replacement is a surgery to replace a poorly working valve with artificial valves, either mechanical or biological valves. Advantages of less invasive procedure include smaller incisions, more accurate and safety with reduced complications, leading to a faster recovery time.
Supported by cutting-edge technology, hospital networking in national scale and world-class standard, Bangkok Heart Hospital is ultimately committed to provide comprehensive heart care to all patients including accurate diagnosis, effective and timely treatments as well as full recovery programs. More importantly, in order to achieve the best possible treatment outcomes, our vital factor regardless of surgery types is highly experienced and well-trained interventional cardiologist and cardiothoracic surgeons as well as multidisciplinary team specialized in cardiac care. In addition, we have conducted clinical researches and training involving in highly complicated heart conditions. By using patient-centric approach, patients can rest assured that they always receive appropriate treatments with the best possible outcomes