CHRISTIAN MEDICAL COLLEGE VELLORE

Not to be ministered unto but to minister

Vision Statement: The Christian Medical College, Vellore, seeks to be a witness to the healing ministry of Christ, through excellence in education, service and research

EVERY HEARTBEAT MATTERS 

Save a heart today!

Celebrating World Heart Day 

29 September, 2019

Heart disease kills more people than anything else in the world today.
Lakhs of Indians die of heart diseases and related conditions every year. Many of these deaths can be prevented by adopting healthy lifestyles and behaviour.
CMC doctors did the first open-heart surgery in India in 1962. Since then we have saved 18,000 hearts!
Our Departments of Cardiology and Cardio-Thoracic Surgery care for around 7,000 patients per year. Many of our patients can’t afford to pay for their operations, and our Person-to-Person fund helps meet the cost.

Help save a heart today –
donate to CMC!

Racing to recovery!

You may be having a heart attack if you feel

• Sharp chest pain toward the
left side of the body, the left arm or the back

• Dizziness, sweating, breathless or fainting.

• Burning in the stomach

If these persist, please contact your doctor immediately.

A heart attack doesn’t need to be the end. CMC’s Cardiac Rehabilitation team helps survivors recover, enjoy healthy, happy lives and even become marathon runners.

Click on the pictures of the runners to read more about the transforming stories of our patients –  heart heroes like Rani – who found new life after a heart attack.

A healthy heart is a happy heart! 

 Eat healthy

 Exercise & be active

 Stop smoking and drinking 

Heart Attack to Half-Marathon
A healthy heart is a happy heart
There’s life after a heart attack
CMC’s Cardiac Rehabilitation team brings together doctors from Cardiology and PMR, cardio-technicians, physiotherapists and nurses. 
Their passion is saving hearts! They believe that heart attack survivors can keep their hearts in good shape through structured exercise and lifestyle change. 
 “After a heart attack, patients are scared to do strenuous exercise. They slow down to protect their heart,” the team explains. “They may climb stairs slowly or avoid them completely. They may stop playing a favorite sport. But it doesn’t have to be this way. The heart is a organ made of muscles, similar to muscles in our hands and legs. Heart muscles can undergo positive changes with structured exercises.”

“That’s why even after a heart attack the survivor can be a marathon champion!”

The Cardiac-Rehab team provides customised exercises program as early as one week after a heart attack. Patients undergo supervised training for 3 – 5 months. Each patient is closely monitored by the team. By the end of the programme, their endurance and confidence increases. As they get fitter, their heart rates also reduce, and this means less stress on the heart. When they are able to run 5 -10 kms, they can join the self-supported Running Club.  
The Running Club members have successfully completed a half-marathon of 21 kms! They also attempt challenges like running up the steep hills around Vellore. Some of the members have registered to run the Chennai Marathon in 2020! The Running Club members are an inspiration to all of us – after surviving a heart attack, they have completely transformed their lives and health!
All of us can learn from the Running Club that taking up regular structured exercise can keep the heart in good shape! A healthy lifestyle brings down the chances of having a heart attack. Exercise can also help control their weight, reduce stress and fight other serious diseases like cancer.
 

Please note: If you are a heart attack survivor, talk to your doctor about the most suitable forms of rehabilitation. You can start with walking or other gentle exercise and build up intensity levels gradually. Stop and see the doctor if you notice any symptoms. 

Heart attack to half-marathon!

Sathyamurthy, 49, is a business man in Vellore. He is a Marathon runner. He recently completed a half-marathon in two and a half hours! “No one believes that only six months ago I suffered from a heart attack,” he says and tell us his life-changing story. “On the 22nd of April 2019, I felt an unusual pain in my jaw and my left arm. It did not bother me initially but the next day the pain worsened. My drinking and smoking habits put me in a high-risk group so my friends urged me to get admitted in CMC. They thought I might be having a heart attack.  I walked down to CMC Hospital and got admitted in the Cardiac Emergency Unit. The doctors did an operation and put a stent into my heart. My friends and family took great care of me. They did not allow me to do difficult work which might hurt my heart. My family even thought of shifting our home to the ground floor so I need not climb up the stairs. After my operation, I joined cardiac rehabilitation program. The doctors asked me to start jogging and running.
After a heart attack, would I be able to run? I was very scared of overworking my weak heart.
The team encouraged and motivated me. Even though I doubted myself, they never gave up on me. They pushed me to do more. I slowly gained confidence and started to run a little more each day. I love my rehab sessions because the team has become like my family. When I open the door in CMC, I feel like I’m coming home! I have a new life and a heart full of gratitude!” The Cardiac-Rehab team is also amazed at Sathyamurthy’s progress. They are proud about how far he has come in his journey after the heart attack. He has given up smoking and drinking. With regular exercise and healthier food habits, he has lost 10kgs in the last six months. He is punctual for all his rehab sessions and is an active member of the Running Club. He has registered to run the Chennai Marathon in 2020. From heart attack to half-marathon, he is a wonderful example of how a survivor can become a strong sportsperson!

There’s life after a heart attack!

Srinivasan, 37, is a carpenter in Vellore. One day, while eating breakfast, he felt a gripping pain in his chest. “Could it be a heart attack?” Srinivasan panicked, as his friend rushed him to CMC Hospital. In the Cardiac Emergency, his worst fears were confirmed. He was having a heart attack and was instantly wheeled into the operation theatre for surgery. Four days later, he regained consciousness. He immediately thought about his family, his wife and two teenage children. “Why did this happen to me? I don’t have any bad habits,” he cried. Srinivasan felt depressed and wanted to go home. But the doctor advised him to join the Cardiac-Rehab programme. “You can get through this difficult time,” the Cardiac-Rehab team encouraged him.  In two weeks, they motivated him to start jogging. With regular exercise and treatment, Srinivasan slowly returned to his cheerful self. He overcame his fear of another heart attack. He became an active member of the Cardiac-Rehab Running Club. Every Sunday, the club members train together in a sports ground. Last week, they ran up steep slopes to the top of the Palamati hills, and Srinivasan was right in front, leading the pack!
As we celebrate World Heart Day this week, Srinivasan shares his message for others with heart problems, one year after his own heart attack:
 “Don’t be afraid. Keep your courage up. There is Life after a heart attack!”



A healthy heart is a happy heart!

Bhaskaran, 45, had an unusual pain in his right arm. He took time out of his stressful schedule as a Housing Society Secretary to have a checkup. The local clinic told him it may be muscle pain and there was nothing to worry about. However, the pain persisted for a few days, so Bhaskaran drove to CMC’s Cardiac Emergency Unit.

An angiogram revealed a large block in his arteries, so the doctors performed an angioplasty, saving his life. His joint family looked after his wife and two school-going children while he was in the ICU.

Two weeks after the operation, he was introduced to the cardiac rehabilitation program.   “You can train and get your heart into good shape, Bhaskaran,”  the team encouraged him.  “Soon you will be running marathons,” and just like that, Bhaskaran was the first member of the Cardiac-Rehab Running Club. After finishing the 3 months program, he began jogging daily at a local college ground.  Soon he was able to run 10 km at a stretch.

“Now I am able to run as fast as my teenage son,” says Bhaskaran proudly. “My wife is my biggest support. She makes sure I never miss a run.”  

The Running Club is a big part of his life. He has inspired other heart attack survivors to join the Running Club.

Racing towards recovery

Rani, 58, is a widow from Vellore. She lives with her 3 sons, daughters-in-law and 7 grandchildren. Last year, she had severe chest pain for a few days. She ignored the pain and kept working at home. One day the pain was unbearable, she felt dizzy and started sweating. Her son rushed her to the Cardiac Emergency at CMC. She was very scared because her sister had died of a heart attack. The doctors operated and saved Rani’s life. While she was admitted in the ward, she met the Cardiac-Rehab team. “Akka, you will walk out of the hospital on your own feet,” they encouraged her. She had never seen a treadmill before, but soon she was walking and jogging on it. “The nurses were afraid that my sari would get caught in the machine. They asked me to wear pants! So next time I left home wearing track-pants and tied my sari on top of that,” she says smiling. After completing the Cardiac-Rehab programme, Rani was able to run 5km at a stretch. She joined the Running Club. She practices every single day, waking up at 5am to jog around the sports field.
Her neighbours used to tease her, “Is this the age to be running around?” they asked. But seeing her determination and persistence, some of them were impressed.
“Teach us to run like you,” they said admiringly. “Sure,” she replied, “just follow me.”
Her eldest son is her biggest supporter. When the running club planned a run to the top of Palamathi hills just outside Vellore, she decided it was too far away for her to go. But her son made sure she was with the Club on Sunday, and though it was a struggle to run up the steep slopes, she made it to the top! “When people ask how a lady like me can be running, I tell them anyone can do it. If you have 2 legs, you also can be a runner,” Rani smiles confidently.