The novel Coronavirus has affected millions of people and continues to mount the number of fatalities around the world. Primarily considered dangerous for its impacts on the lungs, a recent study stated that COVID-19 can cause heart injury, even in individuals without underlying heart issues.
COVID-19, as well as other respiratory diseases like the flu and SARS, can trigger or worsen existing cardiovascular illnesses and cause new heart problems in otherwise healthy people. There are numerous reasons why viruses like the influenza infection or COVID, can turn out to be deadly. Three common reasons are coinfection with another germ; respiratory failure when the lungs are damaged by the disease; and a “cytokine storm” brought about by a mind-boggling immune system reaction to the disease.
The dangers are a lot higher for individuals with preexisting heart conditions. Without a vaccine for the disease, just aggressive, steady care can be given like maintenance of BP, treatment of heart failure with drugs, boosting of renal function and respiratory status, which can require ventilators.
Heart failure is a specific worry in patients with COVID-19. It was discovered that 24 percent of COVID-19 patients were encountering intense heart failure when initially diagnosed with the virus. COVID-19, and other diseases that cause extreme irritation all through the body, increases the risk of rupturing the fatty plaque built-up, prompting heart failures and stroke. Flu and other infections have been linked with an increased risk of plaque ruptures inside the first week after the disease was diagnosed. It is still not sure if the heart failure was brought about by COVID-19 or if it had worsened the undiagnosed heart failure. Likewise, COVID drugs also have the potential to disrupt the effectiveness of heart disease drugs. Hydroxychloroquine is a treatment alternative that meddles with the medication used to manage heart rhythm. It could likewise cause heart damage and deteriorate cardiomyopathy. Remdesivir, an antiviral and the main COVID-19 treatment approved by the FDA, can cause low BP and heart rhythm disorders.
Some of the drugs used to treat COVID-19 may create potential cardiovascular difficulties. It is important for healthcare staff to know about these complications while attending to a COVID-19 patient. Healthcare providers can take the following step to manage the cardiac risks presented by COVID-19.
- Make arrangements for rapid recognition and isolation of cardiovascular patients with COVID-19 symptoms from other patients.
- Patients with basic cardiovascular disease are at higher risk of contracting COVID-19 and have a more awful outlook.
- Inform every single cardiovascular patient of the potential increased risk and encourage extra precautions.
- It’s significant for individuals with cardiovascular disease to stay current with vaccination, particularly for flu and pneumonia.
Normally thought to be a danger to the lungs, COVID-19 likewise presents a significant danger to heart health. In spite of the fact that individuals with the existing heart problems are at greater risk, a small percent of individuals with no previous heart issues also experienced heart failures from COVID-19
Prevention of Coronavirus for heart patients
Being at risk doesn’t mean you’re bound to get the disease — or that you will develop a serious one just in case you do get it. All things said and done, prevention is the best cure. To decrease the chances of getting COVID-19, follow guidelines of the WHO, and your nearby, state and government authorities. This means following the best practices –
- Wash hands frequently for 120 seconds. If you don’t have immediate access to a sink, wash your hands with a sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol content.
- Minimize unnecessarily touching the face
- Disinfect places you often come in contact with like doorknobs, light switches, keyboards etc.
- Stay at home, as much as possible
- Practice social distancing
- Always keep an adequate supply of your medications
Call emergency services if the treatment is needed.
A few people who experience heart problems may be hesitant to go to a center or ER during a pandemic. They shouldn’t overlook the symptoms of cardiovascular emergencies. Heart attacks, dissections, heart failure and arrhythmias are still happening. Also, early treatment for heart issues can spare your life. If you have any concerning heart symptoms reach out to your doctor immediately. The symptoms include:
- Pain and discomfort in Chest
- Breathing trouble
- Loss of taste and smell
- Sore throat
- Muscle pain
Dr. Nagamalesh | Senior Consultant – Cardiology – Adult, Heart Transplant | M S Ramaiah Narayana Heart Centre, M S Ramaiah Nagar, Bangalore