Saturday July 20, 2019

Three Indians Suffer from Brain Stroke Every Minute

The SNVICON also saw the latest technologies being deployed for treatment of stroke. A new web device was also launched

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FILE - Dr. William Burke goes over a PET brain scan, Aug. 14, 2018, at Banner Alzheimers Institute in Phoenix. VOA

Every 20 seconds, one Indian suffers a brain stroke, or three every minute, and the numbers are increasing alarmingly due to changing lifestyles.

At this rate, around 1.54 million Indians are affected by strokes every year and the worse is 90 per cent of stroke patients failed to reach hospital on time.

The lifetime risk of stroke after the age of 55 is 1 in 5 for women and 1 in 6 for men.

These revelations came at the ongoing 3-day Fourth Congress of Society of Neuro Vascular Intervention (SNVICON) Mumbai 2019, with international participation, here on Saturday.

Prominent speakers said the message was simple but alarming – that in India, the numbers of brain strokes are increasing and it would not be wrong to say they are “life-style related”.

Two top Bollywood actors – Jackie Shroff and Sanjay Dutt – came out in support of India’s neurological fraternity to spread the message and awareness that “stroke is beatable”.

Breach Candy Hospital’s Senior Consultant Neurosurgeon and Interventional Neurosurgeon Dr Anil P. Karapurkar said that like a healthy heart, a healthy brain is important, for which precautions need to be taken.

“In case of a heart attack, it is either you are gone or you recover. In case of a brain stroke, you may be gone, you may recover and come to normal, or you become dependent for life,” Karapurkar warned.

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A radiologist examines the brain X-rays of a patient. In a small study, patients with brain tumors were given genetically modified poliovirus, which helped their bodies attack the cancer. VOA

He explained that in case of a heart attack, there are half a dozen basic symptoms such as chest pain, breathlessness, pain in left shoulder and upper abdomen, but in case of strokes, symptoms may vary depending on which side of the brain is affected.

“Stroke is a sudden loss of function of a part of the body. It can happen out of the blue. The simple rule to follow in case of a stroke is – ‘BE FAST’ – Balance, Eyes, Face, Arms, Speech, Time,” he advised.

If a person suffers from problems in balancing, hoarseness in voice, sudden loss of vision, drops an object, giddiness, the first thing is to rush him to hospital without wasting time.

Karapurkar cautioned that treatment for brain strokes cannot start at home and a CT Scan or a MRI Scan is necessary, and since 2015, doctors follow a protocol of CT plus angio or MRI plus angio to tackle such cases.

The neurological fraternity is now contemplating launching a massive outreach programme with family doctors and general practitioners to create more awareness about how to deal with brain stroke emergencies.

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Some of the other prominent speakers included medicos P. S. Ramani, Dileep R. Yavagal, Orlando Diaz, Abhidha Shah, Sukhdeep Khawar, Philippe Mercier and Nitin N. Dange.

The SNVICON also saw the latest technologies being deployed for treatment of stroke. A new web device was also launched.

Some of the major subjects covered are neurovascular anatomy, understanding of cerebral artery and 3D anatomy to understand a person’s condition and treatment better, 3D spine vascular anatomy as a booming field with more to come. (IANS)

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More Indians Getting Fatter but Fewer Undernourished

Meanwhile, there was a drop in the number of undernourished Indians from 253.9 million in 2004-06 to 217 million in 2010-12

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The number of obese adults has gone up in India from 24.1 million in 2012 to 32.8 million in 2016. Pixabay

More Indians are getting fatter but fewer are undernourished as the nation goes from lessening the impact of hunger to developing the new health issue of obesity, according to the Food and Agriculture Organisation.

The number of obese adults has gone up in India from 24.1 million in 2012 to 32.8 million in 2016, according to The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World 2019 report released on Monday.

Meanwhile, there was a drop in the number of undernourished Indians from 253.9 million in 2004-06 to 217 million in 2010-12, and 194.4 million in 2016-18, according to FAO reports.

The number of Indian children under five years who were overweight was 2.4 million last year, while 46 million were stunted, according to the report.

Indians, Fatter, Undernourished
More Indians are getting fatter but fewer are undernourished as the nation goes from lessening the impact of hunger to developing the new health issue of obesity. Pixabay

Globally the number of obese adults has gone up from 563.7 million in 2012 to 672.3 million in 2016, the report said.

FAO Director-General Jose Graziano da Silva said at the news conference releasing the report that obesity was a growing problem worldwide, becoming almost an epidemic especially among children. The globalcosts related with the problems associated with obesity is about $2 trillion, almost as much as the price tobacco exacts in health and other costs, he said.

He said countries will have to control the obesity problem through taxation of sugar, fat and salt, providing healthier foods, and ensuring that consumers get the right information about food products.

Children should be given fresh food and healthy breakfasts instead of cereals with high sugar content, he added.

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The report said that an increase in the unemployment rate in India has possibly increased food insecurity, which is lack of consistent access to food with people being forced to reduce at times the amount they consume.

Food insecurity has increased in Southern Asia “from less than 11 per cent in 2017 to more than 14 per cent in 2018”, the report said. “This possibly reflects an increase in the unemployment rate in India between 2017 and 2018”.

“In the Indian Himalayas, economic slowdown coupled with natural resource depletion and climate change negatively impacted on food production and employment opportunities. This resulted in increased threats to food security due to lower purchasing power,” it added.

The number of undernourished people around the world has come down from 947 million (14.5 per cent of the global population) in 2005 to 821.6 million (10.8 per cent) last year. But it has been rising slowly since 2010, when it was down to 785.4 million (10.6 per cent), mainly because of the situation in Africa. (IANS)