Monday, June 12, 2000,
Chandigarh, India

C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Free heart diseases’ detection camp
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, June 11 — Every 34 seconds someone dies from heart and blood vessel diseases. Keeping in view the high mortality rate, eminent cardiologists of the region organised a free heart diseases detection and treatment camp to educate patients about the treatment plan and the prevention aspect of it. More than 250 patients were examined and given advice during the camp organised by Malhotra Heart Institute and Medical Research Centre, New Delhi, at Hotel Shivalikview today.

As many as 160 echocardiographics were done, of these 75 were detected to be having coronary artery disease. Nearly 200 blood sugar level tests were done to check the diabetic patients.

Patients were asked not to ignore their heart problems and go for early treatment as it is a matter of life and death. For the purposes of investigation, patients were divided into three categories. Free ECG, echocardiography and blood tests of patients, who are potential candidates for developing heart diseases, were done to check the status of the disease and plan treatment accordingly. In case of second category of patients, who had earlier undergone some intervention like balooning, surgery or stenting, besides the tests, advice was given regarding their diet, working schedule and medical treatment. Thirdly, the patients who had developed complications following earlier procedures were also examined thoroughly and given tips as to how to improve the health of the heart.

With a view to prevent heart diseases, patients were asked to give up smoking, avoid stress/strain apart from the dietary regimen. They were also advised to go for brisk walks (2-3 km in half an hour) daily, eat a diet that’s low in fat, cholestrol and salt, keep a check on your weight, blood pressure and blood sugar.

Dr Virendar Sarwal, a senior cardiac surgeon, explained them about different forms of treatment that are available today and their success rates. He advocated immediate treatment in case the patient comes across any abnormal signs and not wait for the heart attack to happen. These symptoms could be uncomfortable heavy feeling, pain or squeezing in the centre of your chest lasting over 15 minutes; pain that goes to shoulders, neck or arms; discomfort in the chest along with sweating, nausea or shortness of breath.

Later, in the symposium on “Interventional cardiology and cardiac surgery”, the local physicians were informed about the latest techniques and their pros and cons. Dr Sarwal spoke about newer trends in heart surgery. He categorically pointed out that all newer techniques were not suitable for all patients and in some cases, it is better to stick to the conventional methods particularly in case of high-risk patients. He discouraged the use of smaller techniques and said that patients should be given optimal blood supply rather than compromise on time and money.

Dr Rahul Malhotra, NRI cardiologist from the USA who has set up the institute, emphasised on the need to do angioplasty during a heart attack to save the muscle and prevent further heart attacks. Highlighting its advantages over the conventional theraphy he pointed out that in the Western countries, timely procedure has delayed the process of heart blockage by 15 years. Immediate diagnosis and treatment will decrease death mortality by 50 per cent and also reduce the patients stay in the hospital. Talking about medication plan, he advised patients to have aspirin as soon as they notice some warning signs. This will help prevent heart attack.

Dr Mohan Bhargava in his talk on “Current concepts in unstable angina” spoke about the management of unstable chest pain and emphasised on the need to avoid delays in case of critically ill patients. He advised them to go in for angiography.

Dr Malhotra said that more such camps would be organised under their community heart care services programmes to educate the masses about how to prevent an attack and follow regular medication.


57 patients visit health camp
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, June 11 — As many as 57 patients, including 39 females and 18 males, with symptoms of reproductice tract infections/sexually transmitted diseases visited the family Health awareness camp organised by State AIDS Control Society, UT, in collaboration with Yuvsatta at the creche of Sector 25 today.

One to one counselling was provided to these patients by trained counsellors of the Indian Red Cross Society. Nearly 250 persons who attended the camp were made aware of the routes of transmission of RTIs/STDs/HIV/AIDS and precautions thereof.

Booklets and pamphlets were also distributed at the camp site. Mr B.B Bahl, of the Chandigarh Territorial Congress Committee, who inaugurated the camp called upon the NGOs to work for creating awareness about family welfare, education and maintenance of hygienic conditions among weaker sections of the society.

Later, Mr Bahl visited the Sector 25 labour colony and heard the grievances of the residents. He assured them that steps would be soon taken to finalise their rehabilitation at some alternate site.


Arterial blood gas machine faulty
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, June 11 — The Arterial Blood Gas machine (ABG) in the Respiratory Intensive Care Unit (RICU), PGI, which has been out of order for the past few months has added to the woes of the doctors and attendants.

This computerised machine is used to measure the metabolic parameters of blood, level of various gases such as oxygen and carbon dioxide, besides the pH factor which indicates the content of acidosis and alkalosis in the body. Doctors attending on patients in RICU maintain that the equipment is very crucial for the management of critically ill patients since the process is speedier and the results are very accurate.

Sources reveal that this machine, which originally belongs to the Department of Experimental Medicine, was transferred to the Respiratory Care Unit two years back since it was not being put to sufficient use there. It was just being used for hypertension work. The authorities felt that the shifting of the machine to RICU will help take the extra load of medical wards and thus lighten the load on the machine in the ICU which is being used round the clock for surgical and trauma patients.

Dr S.K. Jindal, Head of Pulmonary Medicine, admitted that the machine was lying out of order since the electrodes, which are used to measure the level of gases are to be replaced. `` The electrodes have dried up, but the same are not easily available’’, he added. The requirement for the same has been sent, but procedural delays are responsible for the machine being still out of order.

The doctors and attendants of patients in RICU have to now take the samples to the main ICU for investigations and then bring them back. This not only accounts for wastage of time, but also sometimes creates hurdles in monitoring the critically ill patients on ventilators. At times, the blood samples of such patients have to be tested twice a day to assess the ventilator support required by him.


Prevention main way to control AIDS”
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, June 11 — A lecture on `` Growing Challenge of AIDS’’ was organised by the Chandigarh AIDS Hotline under the aegis of the Servants of the People Society at Lajpat Rai Bhawan today as part of the family Health Awareness Fortnight.

The key speaker, Dr Bhushan Kumar, Professor and Head, Department of Dermataology, PGI and Head of Information Education and Communication( IEC) Committee of State AIDS Control, UT pointed out that the deadly disease of AIDSwas spreading rapidly and the number is growing every year.

He emphasised that preventionwas the main method to control AIDS and that could be achieved by modifying human behaviour. Update and accurate scientific knowledge about sexuality and prevention, needed to be given to students in schools and colleges.

Dr N.N Wig, renowned Psychiatrist who presided over the function, described various psychological stages through which a individual passed through when he knew that he was a victim of life-threatening diseases like cancer or AIDS. These were stages of denial, anger, depression and acceptance.

He emphaised that the stigma associated with AIDS must be reduced.


Four school sites to be auctioned today
Tribune News Service

PANCHKULA, June 11—Auction of four schools sites in the city will be held tomorrow at the office of the Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA), Sector 6, as per directions of the Supreme Court.

Reserve prices for the same were earlier prepared by XENs concerned and finalised by the Superintending Engineer after assessment of the construction.

Though the decision to auction four schools sites which include Nav Bal Niketan in Sector 12-A, Vijay Model School, Sector 17, Gyandeep Model School, Sector 18, and New India School, Sector 15, has parents and children worried on the question of recognition by the school boards they are affiliated to and their future in the school, officials of HUDA contend that the preliminaries have already been settled.

The schools will continue to function like before and only their ownership will change hands if the individuals running the schools are not unwilling to bid during the auction.

After the allotment of the school sites, some parties interested in school sites had alleged that the exercise had been unfair and had moved court. The High Court upheld their claim following which the allottees appealed to the Supreme Court which found that though some schools had been given sites on the basis of their reputation, there were others which needed to go under the hammer and had ordered the auction.

The other schools out of the preview of auction were asked to pay the market rate prevailing in 1992 while the construction done by the rest has been assessed to arrive at the reserve price of these school sites.

The Hindu Shiksha Samiti has expressed concern over the auction of the school sites. It contends that this will lead to commercialisation of education and poor students will not be able to avail education.

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