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Cardiovascular Disease

What is Cardiovascular Disease?

It is a collective term for diseases of the heart and blood vessels. The term commonly includes diseases such as coronary heart disease, heart failure, cardiomyopathy, congenital heart disease, peripheral vascular disease and stroke. Many of these conditions can be life-threatening.

How can physiotherapy help me if I have a type of cardiovascular disease?

Physiotherapy-led cardiac rehabilitation (CR) can reduce the risk of death due to heart problems, can increase overall good health and quality of life, reduce time spent in hospital due to cardiac issues and lessen the number of hospital visits due to heart problems.

What are the common causes of cardiovascular disease?

  • High blood pressure

  • High total blood cholesterol

  • Smoking

  • Diabetes

  • Polycystic ovary syndrome

  • Excess weight and physical inactivity

  • Stress

  • Family history

  • Ethnic background

  • Ageing and menopause

  • Depression and feeling alone

How do I know I have cardiovascular disease?

There are different types of cardiovascular disease. Symptoms will vary, depending on the specific type of disease a patient has. However, typical symptoms of an underlying cardiovascular issue include:

  • Chest pain

  • Pain or discomfort in the arms, the left shoulder, elbows, jaw, or back

  • Shortness of breath, also known as dyspnoea

  • Fatigue

  • Light-headed or faint

  • Cold sweat

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