Pre-existing Heart Conditions

What pre-existing health conditions can lead to a higher risk for COVID-19 complications? Dr. Sandhya Murthy, Attending Cardiologist in Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant at Montefiore, describes the conditions that make a patient more vulnerable to severe illness and what precautions those with pre-existing health conditions should take, including heart-healthy habits like exercise and a low-sodium diet.

Dr. Sandhya Murthy, Attending Cardiologist in Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant at Montefiore explains what pre-existing health conditions can lead to a higher risk for COVID-19 complications.
Transcript

STAY STRONG

What pre-existing heart conditions cause a higher risk for COVID-19 complications?

It's important to note that the risk of catching the virus is the same for everyone. That being said, there's certain conditions that we have to known to actually cause people to be sicker and require prolonged ICU care. Generally, older patients over 70, those with a history of hypertension, diabetes, and congestive heart failure, tend to require more intensive care unit time, and generally are sicker from the disease than those that don't have those preexisting conditions.

How can a patient with pre-existing heart conditions stay healthy during the era of COVID-19?

Particularly those with preexisting health conditions should maintain all the standard COVID-19 precautions that we prescribe to everyone, like hand-washing for at least 20 seconds, maintaining social distance of at least six feet, and wearing a mask when in public. In addition to this, you should really try to maintain the heart healthy lifestyle prescribed to you by your doctor. For example, low salt, fluid restriction if you're worried about congestive heart failure, and also try to maintain exercise during these times. Most importantly, make sure that you take all the medicines prescribed to you by your doctor.

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