Mid-week Medical: Cardiovascular Disease (CVD)

Disclaimer : The information provided on this page is for general purposes only.  The information should not be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.  Always seek the advice of a doctor or other qualified health provider if you have questions regarding a medical condition.

If you’ve missed our Chief Medical Officer on his weekly slot on Wednesday afternoon on FM100, don’t worry because we’ve got the highlights for you right here.

What is Cardiovascular Disease (CVD)?

Cardiovascular disease is a class of diseases that involve the heart or blood vessels and are the leading cause of death globally.


CVD involving the heart:

  • cardiomyopathy – diseases of the heart muscle
  • hypertensive heart disease – secondary to high blood pressure
  • heart failure
  • cardiac dysrhythmias
  • inflammatory heart disease – endocarditis, myocarditis.
  • valvular heart disease
  • others

CVD involving the blood vessels:

  • coronary artery disease
  • peripheral artery disease
  • cerebrovascular disease
  • renal artery stenosis
  • aorta aneurysm.

Coronary artery disease, stroke and peripheral artery disease involve artherosclerosis. Artherosclerosis is the build up of fats, cholesterol and other substances in or on the artery walls (plaques) which can restrict blood flow.

This may be caused by:

  • high blood pressure – 13% (Percentage of CVD deaths)
  • smoking – 9%
  • diabetes – 6%
  • lack of exercise – 6%
  • obesity – 5%
  • high blood cholesterol
  • poor diet
  • excessive alcohol consumption.

It is estimated that 90% of CVD deaths are preventable.

Risk factors:

  • tripling of risk with each decade of life – 82% who die of CVD are older than 65.
  • risk of stroke doubles every decade after age 55
  • men are at greater risk than women – CVD diseases are 2 to 50 times more common in middle-aged men than women
  • family history of CVD.
  • exposure to second hand smoke – people who quit by age 30 have the same risk as never smokers
  • physical inactivity – fourth leading risk factor for mortality worldwide
  • excessive alcohol consumption – there is a direct relationship between high levels of alcohol consumption and risk of CVD
  • unhealthy diet
  • high blood cholesterol (Hyperlipidemia)


  • healthy diet
  • tobacco cessation and avoidance of second-hand smoke
  • limit alcohol consumption
  • lower blood pressure – treat HPT
  • decrease body fat if overweight or obese
  • increase daily activity.
  • reduce sugar consumption
  • decrease psychosocial stress