Tue, Feb 27, 2024

CKM Syndrome: New Heart Disease Threat - Are You at Risk?

" New Cardiovascular Syndrome Identified: 1 in 3 Adults at Risk "

Health experts are revolutionizing the way we understand and manage cardiovascular disease (CVD) with a breakthrough approach that considers the interconnectedness of CVD, kidney disease, and metabolic disorders. The American Heart Association (AHA) has introduced a paradigm shift with the creation of Cardiovascular-Kidney-Metabolic (CKM) syndrome, which sheds light on the significant overlap of these conditions and their collective impact on individuals.

CKM syndrome is a comprehensive term that encapsulates the intricate relationship between cardiovascular disease, kidney dysfunction, and metabolic imbalances. It recognizes that many individuals with or at risk for cardiovascular disease may also grapple with CKM syndrome.

The AHA has developed a four-stage system to help individuals comprehend their risk of developing CKM syndrome and navigate a path to better health:

Stage 0: Aspiration for Optimal Health

  • In this stage, individuals have no cardiovascular, kidney, or metabolic risk factors.
  • Emphasis is on adopting a healthy lifestyle, including diet, exercise, and abstinence from smoking.
  • Regular check-ups are recommended every three to five years to monitor blood pressure, cholesterol, triglycerides, and blood sugar.

Stage 1: Acknowledging Early Signs

  • Individuals in this stage may exhibit excess body fat, especially around the abdominal area, or have prediabetes.
  • Lifestyle interventions, such as healthy eating and exercise, are encouraged.
  • Targeting at least a 5% reduction in body weight is a goal.
  • Monitoring of blood pressure, triglycerides, cholesterol, and blood sugar every two to three years is advised.

Stage 2: Addressing Metabolic Risk and Kidney Disease

  • Stage 2 encompasses individuals with Type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, high triglycerides, or kidney disease.
  • This stage poses a higher risk for worsening kidney and heart problems.
  • The focus here is to manage risk factors effectively, which may include medications to control blood pressure, blood sugar, and cholesterol.
  • The use of SGLT2 inhibitors and GLP-1 receptor agonists is considered in certain cases.
  • Screening aligns with AHA/ACC guidelines, including yearly assessments of various health markers.

Stage 3: Tackling Early Cardiovascular Disease

  • Individuals in this stage experience early cardiovascular disease without symptoms.
  • The objective is to intensify efforts to prevent progression to symptomatic cardiovascular disease and kidney failure.
  • Medication adjustments and intensified lifestyle changes are part of the strategy.
  • Coronary artery calcium (CAC) measurements may be utilized to assess artery narrowing.
  • This stage underlines the importance of taking preventive action to curb heart failure.

Stage 4: Managing Symptomatic Cardiovascular Disease

  • The final stage is for individuals with symptomatic cardiovascular disease and may be divided into those with or without kidney failure.
  • Subcategories encompass individuals who may have experienced heart attacks, strokes, or heart failure.
  • Individualized treatment for cardiovascular disease, accounting for CKM syndrome conditions, is the focus.

Predicting Risks

Understanding your risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) is essential to preventing it. But how do you know how likely you are to develop CVD in the next five years?

Emerging quantitative risk assessments that combine multiple risk factors are changing the game. By quantifying an individual's actual risk, healthcare providers can tailor personalized lifestyle and treatment strategies to manage and reduce that risk effectively.

This paradigm shift underscores the importance of proactively addressing cardiovascular, kidney, and metabolic health, paving the way for a holistic and preventive approach to healthcare.

The American Heart Association's initiative to develop new risk assessment tools and promote preventive care is poised to transform the landscape of cardiovascular health and offer individuals the tools they need to take control of their well-being.

What does this mean for you?

If you're concerned about your risk of CVD, talk to your doctor about getting a quantitative risk assessment. This tool can help you understand your individual risk and develop a personalized plan to protect your heart health.

Here are some tips to get started:

  • Eat healthy diet
  • Excersice regurlarly
  • Maintain healthy weight
  • Manage strees
  • Don't smoke 
  • Go regular checkups

You can live a longer, healthier life if you take actions to lower your risk of CVD.

 

 

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