How does cardiovascular disease increase your risk of severe illness?

According to the detailed reports published by China, it has been already found that more than 80% of the COVID-19 patients suffer from symptoms like dry cough, body aches along with fever and all these symptoms can be managed at home. But what about the remaining 20%?

The remaining 20% of the COVID-19 patients are going to develop more severe symptoms like pneumonia and they might need hospitalization in such cases. And if a person with pre-existing heart disease comes in contact with COVID-19 then he or she will have increased chances of heart attack or developing any type of congestive heart failure. 

But why does COVID-19 affect the heart and is it just an aftereffect of the severe illness that people have to go through while suffering from COVID-19? Let’s find out through this blog post. 

Inflammation of the heart muscles 

Many of the COVID-19 patients who went through any type of heart attack are indeed suffering from a special type of inflammation of the heart muscle which is called myocarditis in the medical world. When an electrocardiogram was done for such patients then there were several changes found that were a direct sign of a chronic heart attack

Along with this, blood tests were also done for such patients and in those blood tests, an increased level of troponin was found and this indicates towards damaging of the heart muscles. In such a situation, the heart muscle becomes weak and the person might have to deal with dangerous heart rhythms that can be life-threatening. 

It’s true that it has not yet been proved that the myocarditis is a direct result of the virus or not and this is one of the main reasons why doctors are not able to treat such patients in the right manner. So, the best way to avoid a chronic heart attack is to take precautionary measures against COVID-19. 

Increased risk of illness in COVID-19 patients with heart diseases

It has been found that almost 10% of the COVID-19 patients with pre-existing heart disease will die while on the other side, only 1%  of COVID-19 patients with no such type of disease will die. The increased risk of death or what is called the mortality rate is also high in people with high blood pressure.

This is true because the COVID-19 directly attaches itself to the ACE2 receptors that are mostly found in both heart and lung tissues. All those people who take ARBs and ACE inhibitors produce an increased amount of such receptors and this increases susceptibility to infection.

ARBs and ACE inhibitors- good or not?

In most cases of hypertension, ARBs and ACE inhibitors are the most prescribed form of medicine and these medicines have been proposed as one of those possible factors in the elevated incidence of COVID-19 in all the people who are dealing with high BP. 

But it has been found that ACE2 is helpful in dealing with a viral lung infection in mice and there are many studies going to prove that ACE2 is helpful against COVID-19 as well. 

So, as of now, there is not enough evidence available to prove whether ARBs and ACE inhibitors are harmful or helpful. So the best approach used by the medical practitioners is to not stop the people who are already consuming such medicines and neither suggest it to any new patient. 

If you are already dealing with any type of heart-related disease then COVID-19 can prove to be fatal for you. This is why you should follow all the mentioned guidelines to stay away from COVID-19 infection. 

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