Heart Valve Disease Awareness Day
Hey everyone! February is flying by. We are already in the third week. Today’s Awareness Day will focus on Heart Valve Disease. Every year on February 22 we recognize this disease.
What is Heart Valve Disease? “Heart valve disease (valve disease) is a type of heart disease that involves damage to one or more of the heart’s four valves that causes them to not open or close properly and disrupts blood flow” (Alliance for Aging Research). Some versions of the disease are not serious. However, there are some that can lead to death.
A heart’s valve is important in controlling blood flow. When one doesn’t close completely, the blood will flow backward. A process called regurgitation or a “leaky valve” “Without treatment, this can lead to serious complications including arrhythmias, congestive heart failure, stroke, other heart diseases, and even death. “These complications can significantly impact the quality of life, make everyday activities difficult, and lead to disability and loss of independence” (Alliance for Aging Research). If treated early enough though, the success of treatment is higher.
The amount of Americans affected by this disease is crazy. As many as 11 million! However, according to a 2017 survey, a vast majority of adults are not aware of this disease.
By recognizing this day, we can help make people aware and educate the public. Those who are aware of the disease can recognize the symptoms and risks if leaving untreated. Early detection can lead to quicker treatment and thus save lives. “While heart valve disease can be disabling and deadly, available treatments can save lives, making education and awareness particularly important” (Alliance for Aging Research). Over a hundred of organizations, non-profits, hospitals, and more are involved in spreading awareness. The campaign has reached millions
How can you help? You can spread awareness of this disease through your social media. The more awareness you bring, the more others can detect the symptoms early or be prepared. Another way you can help is by taking the Listen to Your Heart Pledge. You can take the pledge here: https://valvediseaseday.org/take-the-pledge-today/
(Photo Credit: Alliance for Aging Research)
(Photo Credit: "Heart Valves by Sam Penrice, University of Dundee" by dundeetilt is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)