Bhubaneswar: People with cardiovascular disease are at higher risk of developing complications in the event of getting infected with Covid-19, cautioned renowned Cardiologist Dr Mahendra Prasad Tripathy.
“People suffering from cardiovascular disease are at higher chances of developing complications like permanent thrombosis, pulmonary embolism when infected with Covid-19 because the latter causes coagulation cascade and accelerates coagulation system,” said Dr Tripathy answering a question at a presser on sensitization of public on home isolation at the Geeta Govinda Sadan here today.
Speaking on precautions a patient suffering from heart diseases should take in the event of him/her getting infected with Covid-19, Dr Tripathy said, “Symptoms like chest pain, feeling breathless, irregular heartbeats need to be carefully observed. These three things are important because, in the event of COVID infection, there can be three-four problems which their heart could suffer-1. They can suffer from a heart attack due to permanent thrombosis, 2. They can suffer from sudden cardiac death due to irregular heart beating or 3. Their heart muscle function can become weak as a result of Myocarditis. These three things can happen either due to breathing difficulty or could be due to palpitation and falling down due to head reeling. Attention should be paid to these symptoms.”
Dr Tripathy said that those patients who are fitted with pacemakers and are stable won’t have any problem in the event of being mild or moderate COVID infection.
He, however, cautioned that those who have severe Covid, there are chances that they can develop Myocarditis leading to irregular heartbeat and patients who are fitted with higher model pacemakers like CRT-D or CRT-P, their heart muscle function could further weaken due to Myocarditis and there is a possibility their heartbeats becoming irregular.
So particularly, those patients who have been fitted with CRT-D or CRT-P devices in the event of feeling breathlessness or observing irregular heartbeats or falling down after head reeling should immediately consult their doctor, he added.
“Because of the Covid pandemic routine procedures like coronary angiogram and angioplasty in my opinion should be postponed. But urgent procedures like ST-Elevation Myocardial Infarction (STEMI) where the patient is suffering from an acute heart attack and the patient is unstable in such cases primary angioplasty or rescue angioplasty is advisable but precaution has to be taken like using PPE kit by all staff where the procedure will be undertaken and existing norms are to be followed and the patient on shifting should be kept in an isolated Covid ICU,” said Dr Tripathy.
Answering a question on the issue of whether patients with heart disease can remain in home isolation in the event of being infected with Covid, Dr Tripathy said, “In my opinion patients who have stable heart disease i.e. 1. Blood pressure well-controlled 2. those who have undergone PTC or bypass surgery and one or two have elapsed since then and had routine check-ups and have no issues can definitely stay at home and get themselves treated.”