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Increased Risk Of Cardiovascular Disease For People With A Loved One With Cancer

April 07, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 96

A recent study has found an increased risk for people who have a partner with cancer. Scientists postulate that it is because of increased stress levels which are known to have many adverse effects on the body.

Previous studies have already uncovered a link to mental illness and depression amongst people who have a loved one with cancer. As well, other previous studies have reported on the effects and toll this takes on a person's nervous system, blood pressure and inflammation levels when dealing with chronic stressors such as serious illness. These risks are known to increase the risk of a person developing coronary heart disease or suffering a stroke.

With this in mind, researchers in Malmö, Sweden at the Centre for Primary Healthcare Research began to investigate the types of specific risks for cardiovascular disease and stroke when the spouse of a person has been diagnosed with cancer. Their study discovered that these people had an increased risk of more than 13 to 29%. These results were based on information taken from the National Swedish cancer registry and something called the Swedish inpatient registry.

The scientist believe that one possible explanation for this increase in risk levels could be because spouses share both lifestyle as well as risk factors like alcohol and tobacco consumption. They also tend to have remarkably similar habits in diet and exercise. This explanation did not seem to hold water, however, when they took into account that risk for cardiovascular disease increased only slightly by about 3-5% prior to the person's spouse becoming ill with cancer. They were therefore able to correlate the increased risk to the negative stress to which the cancer patient's spouse was exposed.

Cardiovascular disease involves more than just the heart, it also involves all the arteries and veins leading to and from the heart. Its medical name is atherosclerosis but it was once referred to as "hardening of the arteries".

It is the biggest cause of death in the world but deaths from this disease have begun to decline in the past two decades. In 2008, cardiovascular disease killed more than 17 million worldwide. It kills more women than breast cancer each year and is now being seen in young people at an alarming rate.

Cardiovascular disease is a silent killer. By the time it has been diagnosed, it has usually been present for many years and has caused a great deal of damage to the heart. The best way to treat it is to prevent it entirely. Modifying risk factors by eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly and avoiding tobacco use are good measures to prevent this disease.

Once it has been diagnosed cardiovascular disease can usually be managed quite effectively with changes to the patient's diet. The implementation of other lifestyle interventions, such as training in stress management and an exercise regimen will also help a patient dramatically reduce their risk of heart attack or stroke from the disease.

If you're concerned about cardiovascular disease and want to know how you can prevent it I would like to share with you some tips on how to do that with moderate lifestyle changes. Learn how to make some positive changes in your life and prevent heart disease.

Sari Crossman has been crafting high-quality articles for the internet since 2007. She lives in Canada where she owns and operates an article content business called Eiji Media. She specializes in the health, personal finance and technology niches. Visit her at:

Source: EzineArticles
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