Drugs to help people with heart risks

LIFE saving drugs for people at risk of heart disease are being prescribed in a bid to improve services for people in west Suffolk.West Suffolk Primary Care Trust has pinpointed patients on their list who need to be given pre-emptive care as well as prompt life saving treatment.

LIFE saving drugs for people at risk of heart disease are being prescribed in a bid to improve services for people in west Suffolk.

West Suffolk Primary Care Trust has pinpointed patients on their list who need to be given pre-emptive care as well as prompt life saving treatment.

It is the PCT's part in a national move to try and reduce mortality rates for patients with Coronary Heart Disease.

Like Ipswich PCT, GP's in West Suffolk will now be prescribing drugs called statins, which helps to stop heart disease before it becomes life threatening.


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The number of people with CHD in west Suffolk who have been prescribed statins has risen from 55% to 89% over the past year.

Statins are a group of drugs which prevent heart attacks by reducing cholesterol levels in the blood. Anyone who has had a heart attack should take statins to prevent a recurrence.

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Other improvements have also been made to treat people who have heart disease.

Around one in four heart attacks and strokes may be prevented by aspirin, which reduces the chance of blood clots developing. Nearly everyone with heart disease in west Suffolk is taking aspirin daily – 98% - up from 68% 12 months ago. The prescribing of beta-blockers, which help to lower blood pressure, has also gone up from 52% to 90%.

Dr Rosie Frankenberg, Director of Public Health for Suffolk West PCT. " "It is of vital importance that people with coronary heart disease should take preventative medicines, as doing so could save their life.

"CHD is the biggest killer in the country, with more than 110,000 people in England dying from the disease every year.

"Most people are aware that stopping smoking, exercise and a healthy low-fat diet with plenty of fruit and vegetables will protect against heart disease. "Statins, beta-blockers and aspirins are a further important weapon in the fight against the disease."

Suffolk West PCT has also invested £48,000 in defibrillators and ECG machines for the 26 GP practices and six community health centres in its catchment area.

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