India's First Arrhythmia Support Network: Bridging the unmet gap
INDIA’S FIRST ARRHYTHMIA SUPPORT NETWORK: BRIDGING THE UNMET GAP
Arrhythmia support network is India’s first heart rhythm problem support network. Arrhythmia means: meaning not in normal rhythm. These problems range from benign to serious life threatening ones.
IN INDIA AT PRESENT-
• Majority of curable arrhythmic patients unaware of treatment or do not have assessable treatment
• Majority of atrial fibrillation (AF) patients landing into disabling strokes
• Nearly sure & sudden death if you are unfortunate to have ventricular arrhythmia leading to sudden cardiac arrest.
EDUCATION IS THE GREATEST WEAPON FOR CHANGE
India at present has enormous burden of heart rhythm problem and a paucity of heart rhythm specialists known as cardiac electrophysiologist. Thousands die everyday suddenly – a condition known as sudden cardiac arrest. Thousands have stroke everyday due to undiagnosed or untreated atrial fibrillation. Still, there are hardly any specialized clinics for atrial fibrillation & ventricular arrhythmias and facilities for catheter ablation even in majority of tertiary care centres & teaching hospitals across the country. Majority of tertiary care hospitals across India also lack an electrophysiology department. Thus, to meet this gap & great public health significance of cardiac rhythm problems like atrial fibrillation & sudden cardiac arrest a support network for general public was much needed.
MOST OF HEART RHYTHM PROBLEMS ARE CURABLE -
KILL YOUR ARRYTHMIA BEFORE IT KILLS YOU
Ironically most of heart rhythm problems unlike diabetes, hypertension, and coronary artery disease are curable without the need of prolonged medication. Cardiac electrophysiology is the branch of cardiology dealing with heart rhythm problems and is a curative branch of medicine. Electro physiologists are heart rhythm problem specialists who can cure arrhythmia with minimally invasive techniques like radiofrequency ablation and let a patient live a normal fearless life. Most common arrhythmias like paroxysmal supraventricular tachycardia (PSVT), atrioventricular reentry tachycardia (AVNRT), WPW syndrome, focal atrial tachycardia, and atrial flutters, even ventricular arrhythmias like fascicular ventricular tachycardia, bundle branch reentry, and focal ventricular tachycardia have high success. Even patients with Brady arrhythmias like complete heart block on pacemaker have nearly normal life expectancy. With devices like CRT around 60 % will improvement in heart failure symptoms.
INDIA ‘S FIRST ARRYTHMIA SUPPORT NETWORK :
Is first of its kind social initiative to help arrhythmia patients know about their heart rhythm problems & get proper treatment.
Arrhythmia Club: Anyone can become a member, post an ECG and get an opinion. We will also provide valuable information about your medical condition. Lot of physicians & doctors also have sometimes problem in ECG diagnosis, which can diagnose hundreds of medical conditions with minimal cost.
Sudden cardiac arrest prevention network: Sudden cardiac arrest means sudden stoppage of heart effective function in previously apparently normal person.
• It has about 7 % survival rates in advanced economies.
• In India because of lack of awareness and free availability of public defibrillator devices more than 99% of Indians who experience sustained ventricular fibrillation face certain death. Reviving a sudden cardiac arrest victim is like snatching life from jaws of death. It requires cardiopulmonary resuscitation and shock therapy for fibrillatory rhythms in initial few minutes.
• In India because of lack of cardiopulmonary resuscitation skills and automatic external defibrillators presently > 99 % of victims face certain death.
• There is urgent need to train general public & install automatic external defibrillators at public places
We have initiated special ventricular arrhythmia clinic & sudden cardiac arrest prevention workshops. Presently ventricular arrhythmia ablation is offered at few centres in India only.
Atrial Fibrillation Support network:
• Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common arrhythmia.
• AF is the most powerful single risk factor for suffering a deadly or debilitating stroke.
• It increases an individual's risk five-fold and being responsible for at least 20% of all ischemic strokes & also related to heart failure, sudden death, cardiovascular morbidity and vascular dementia.
• Life after a stroke with disabilities can be worse than death causing huge financial and emotional burden to families affected and country as a whole
• Strokes can be easily prevented by proper anticoagulation.
• In India there are very few atrial fibrillation specialists who can perform catheter ablation for AF if refractory to medical therapy.
• AF support network provides valuable information about the disease & treatment. Associated anticoagulation & stroke helpline will deal with emergencies pertaining to anticoagulation & stroke.
Dr Rohit Walia
Founder & Chairman
Arrhythmia Support Network
MD, DNB, DM (Cardiology)
Post Doctoral Fellowship – Electrophysiology & Devices
Post Doctoral Fellowship- Advanced Electrophysiology