Those with chronic diseases should be more careful against coronavirus, which continues to spread rapidly in the world and in our country. Postponing the treatment of patients with cardiovascular problems during the pandemic process due to the worry of getting a virus can cause fatal consequences. Professor of Cardiovascular Surgery Department of Memorial Kayseri Hospital. Dr. Faruk Cingöz gave information about the effects of coronavirus on the heart and vascular system.
The first host of the virus is the lungs
It has been determined that the first host point of the mutated Covid-19 is the lungs. Because the presence and abundance of receptors in the lungs with which the virus adapts are known. Lungs are affected in almost all patients, and symptoms of pneumonia and pleurisy occur. In patients with severe lung damage due to virus-borne disease, respiratory failure deepens and the patient is intubated to breathe with an auxiliary breathing device.
Coronavirus can also settle in the heart
In the process, it has been revealed that the lungs are not the target organ but the host organ. The receptors where the virus enters and attaches to the body are found not only in the lung, but also in the heart, inner wall of vessels, small intestines, kidneys and nerve cells. The virus causes problems by settling in these organs and causing damage. In fact, the target organ of the coronavirus is the heart. As it shows its fatal effect by directly settling in the heart, the toxic residues that are formed by excessive mauling and tiring of the body cause functional weakness by suppressing the heart. When the virus acts directly, inflammation of the heart muscle (myocarditis) occurs.
The virus can cause heart failure
Due to the effect of the virus, the heart muscle swells and the body cannot produce effective blood pressure. As a result, heart failure develops. Heart failure has been detected in 7-12% of hospitalized patients. This unusual swelling of the heart muscles unfortunately causes heart rhythm disturbances together with the disturbances in the neural network of the heart, resulting in sudden deaths. Coronavirus affects the vascular system as well as the heart. It thickens the vessel walls (vasculitis), disrupts the slipperiness of the inner vessel surface (intimitis), increases intravascular coagulation, that is, thrombosis. It triggers the risk of heart attack by making the same effect on the heart vessels. In 19 out of 100 patients who were hospitalized with the diagnosis of Covid-10, the cardiovascular system is directly affected and the mortality rate is high in this group.
Heart surgery can be performed for those who have had Covid-19
In patients who have had a heart attack and subsequently caught coronavirus, open heart surgeries can be performed after the PCR test turns negative due to the persistence of chest pain and the increase of heart destruction products. Patients stay in intensive care for a long time in the postoperative period and regain their health after effective and meticulous treatment. However, the thought "I had open heart surgery, if I get Covid-19, I will lose my life immediately" is not the right approach. It is certain that heart patients, especially those who have open heart surgery, will be more affected by the harmful effects of the coronavirus than healthy people. However, it should not be forgotten that the current treatments of these patients are under some kind of protection when they are meticulously and regularly.
Important warnings for those with heart problems
People with heart problems should pay extra attention to mask, distance and cleaning measures.
In this process, when heart-related complaints are neglected, bigger problems can be experienced. 'It is extremely wrong not to apply to health institutions with the concern that the virus may be transmitted. It should be remembered that all security measures are taken for the health and safety of patients in hospitals.
Patients should regularly use their medicines given by specialist physicians. During the pandemic process, patients should not believe in false information as some drugs are harmful, and they should get information about the drugs they use from specialist physicians who follow them.
Patients with heart failure should have the flu and pneumonia vaccines.
Cardiac patients should talk to their doctor about the Covid-19 vaccine and should be included in the vaccination program if appropriate.