Auckland, June 14, 2018
A routine cardiovascular risk assessment was able to highlight the need for intervention for a patient attending one of Procare’s affiliated Medical Centres.
People with diabetes like ‘Mr X’ attend medical centres every three months for assessment of blood pressure, lipid profile and Hba1c (3 month average blood sugar) levels. During these appointments, an ongoing prescription for medications is prepared for them.
Cardiovascular Risk Assessment
Medical centres also have a yearly task of completing a cardiovascular risk assessment for patients like ‘Mr X’ who have long term conditions.
This assessment calculates an estimate of health risk that can indicate the need for further intervention or intensification of treatment.
People with diabetes have a greater risk of damage to the blood vessels and this can bring greater possibility for heart and brain events (heart attack or stroke), along with possible damage to eyes, kidneys and nerves. Because of the seriousness of the potential impact of these health conditions this yearly check is important.
The check needs two recent blood pressures, a blood test with lipids (cholesterol) and Hba1c levels, a foot check and a report from eye screening along with other patient information like smoking status, medical conditions and medications issued. Information on the patients exercise level can also be added.
In January 2018, Mr X’s calculation was completed, showing areas of concern.
The Hba1c had increased greatly and the need for regular sugar lowering prescriptions was given to the patient.
Education around food and ways to increase physical activity was also given.
Decreasing high GI (Glycaemic Index) foods including less carbohydrates, eating less high GI foods (for example containing less sugar, flour, rice and potatoes) and reducing calories overall can make a big difference to glucose levels.
Regular physical activity with greater effort and variety also has significant benefits for health and blood sugar levels even if weight loss does not happen.
As gaining muscle mass reduces insulin resistance and glucose levels and so decreases the potential harm to health.
Benefits of lifestyle change
Mr X was able to change his lifestyle once he realised the benefit to making the changes, he has obtained a dog to encourage regular exercise.
He is taking the sugar lowing medications regularly now that he understands the benefit of well controlled glucose levels.
His estimated risk level is now 7% as of June 2018, reduced from 10% in January.
A 30% reduction in risk for serious medical complications is a good result for Mr X and the staff at the medical centre.
Blood Pressure check is a part of routine examination of patients suffering from cardiovascular diseases (Picture Supplied)