Cardiovascular risk factors on the rise in Asia: Study

Tokyo, July 7 (IANS) Cardiovascular risk factors like hypertension, high cholesterol and diabetes appear to be on the rise in Asia, particularly Japan, says researchers.

Using data from earlier studies and examining a health programme launched by the Japanese government, the researchers found many risk factors in the Japanese population remain unchanged or even worsened over more than a decade.

In Japan and China, there is an increasing incidence of hypertension and is completely different than the US where rates of hypertension did not change. Many risk factors in the Japanese population remain unchanged or even worsened over more than a decade.

“Cardiovascular disease deaths in Japan have increased and the prevalence of risk factors is expected to increase as the Japanese population continues to age,” said guest editor Masafumi Kitakaze in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

On the other hand, there has been an overall decline in coronary artery disease-related mortality in the US and Europe. This decline has been attributed to reductions in risk factors and the promotion of treatments.

“Data collection on patients, not only in Japan but in Asia and around the world, is key to understanding the status of cardiovascular disease and determining the future direction of care,” Kitakaze said.

By combining data collection with clinical trials, the cardiovascular community can continue to develop new treatments and improve outcomes for patients.

“Focusing attention and research efforts on these parameters for varied cardiovascular disease will help us better understand how to improve treatment for our patients across the globe,” said Valentin Fuster, editor-in-chief of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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