Kolkata, Nov 25 IBNS | 2 years ago

The Queen of Heart campaign, India's largest awareness drive on women's heart health, recently launched The Queen of Heart Express, a unique initiative in India that will connect the largest network of cities through a bus cruise for the first time for Heart Diseases in Women cause.

Dr. Anjan Lal Gutta, DM Cardiologist, Peerless Hospital, flagged off the Express in Kolkata. Many eminent cardiologists like Dr. Sunip Banerjee, Dr. D Kumar and Dr. Tapas Roy were also present to grace the event.

Queen of Heart Express conducted theatrical street play performances with themes focusing on heart diseases in Indian women, its atypical manifestations, and prevalence in Kolkata. Free counseling was provided to the citizens of Kolkata.

Flagging off the Queen of Heart Express, Dr. Anjan Lal Dutta, DM Cardiologist, said, "It's not just that heart diseases are on an alarming rise amongst women, the fact that it is considered more of a men's disease is making large section of our society to overlook the symptoms in time.

"This calls for steps to address the urgent need for such large-scale initiatives, which could not only connect with people from all walks of life but also engage them through a unique awareness drive."

Dr. Tapas Roy, DM Cardiologist, said, "Changing lifestyles of modern women and negligence towards preventive measures are important reasons behind the rise of CVD. Hence, there is a need to spread awareness amongst the masses and make them aware that heart disease is not just a man's disease."

With a recent WHO factsheet revealing that every four seconds a woman dies of causes attributable to heart disease, and American Heart Association suggesting that almost two-thirds (64pc ) of women who die suddenly of coronary heart disease have no previous symptoms, the Queen of Heart campaign has spun the wheel of awareness around women heart health in the country at a decisive moment in time.

The Queen of Heart Express was flagged off by Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit on the eve of World Heart Day.

The Express intends to cover a distance of 20,000 km through India, thereby reaching out to more people in far flung areas across country and touching more than 2 lack people.

After being flagged off from Delhi, the Queen of Heart Express reached Jaipur, covered Ajmer, Kota, Jodhpur and Udaipur.

The bus then stepped into Gujarat, the first stop being Ahmedadbad, then moving on to Rajkot, Surat and Baroda. Next the express forayed into Maharashtra, starting with Mumbai, then Pune and Mirag Sangli , also covering Panaji, Goa.

It then reached Karnataka starting with Mangalore then Mysore and finally the capital, Bangalore.

It ventured towards the south with Tamil Nadu, starting with Chennai to Coimbatore, then Andhra Pradesh starting with Vijaywada, Secuderabad and Hyderabad. After covering Madhya Pradesh successfully the Queen of heart express has entered the City of Joy on Nov 17.

The entire campaign is designed to amend the conventional mindset of common people and sometimes even that of healthcare professionals, that 'heart disease is a men's disease'.

According to experts this is one of the major reasons to overlook its symptoms, which are often atypical, and a key contributory factor in making heart disease one of the most misdiagnosed and undertreated disease among women.

According to recently conducted survey "Visualizing the Extent of heart Disease in INDIAN women", VEDNA intending to map the trends of cardiovascular diseases (CVD) in Indian women, in last five years 54pc of cardiologists observed a 16-20pc of overall growth rate in cardiovascular diseases among women, which quite high as compared of men.

More surprisingly, a whopping 41pc of the doctors, who participated in survey, claimed an alarming 10-15pc growth rate in cardiovascular diseases among the age group of 20-40 years, the category of women which was earlier considered 'protected' from heart ailments.

The Queen of Heart campaign, an initiative of Biocon, supported by Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Indian Public Health Association, Help Age India, FICCI Ladies Organization, and Heal Foundation, is focused on spreading awareness, busting myths, and on making a case for sustained interventions to deal with the burgeoning incidence of heart disease in Indian women.

(Posted on 25-11-2013)