BEIRUT: A conference organized by Ferrer Internacional brought together world-class cardiologists, internists, and primary care doctors Wednesday to discuss strategies for the prevention of cardiovascular disease.
Ferrer is an international pharmaceutical company headquartered in Barcelona.
One of the event's motives was to generate awareness that will keep medical professionals abreast of the problems affecting the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular disease and mainly focused on the incorporation of “Polypill” use into clinical practice. The other motive was to launch and create awareness around the polypill which can be used in 3 medical cases.
A polypill is a medication that combines multiple active pharmaceutical ingredients.
A specialist in Internal Medicine at the Reina Sofia Hospital in Córdoba and member of the Spanish Society of Arteriosclerosis, Prof. Pablo Perez, spoke about the combination of the Polypill which consists of low-dose aspirin, a statin (which lowers cholesterol) and an antihypertensive (for high blood pressure) which are all considered as integral parts of a comprehensive cardiovascular disease prevention strategy.
“In fact, patients with a history of myocardial infarction or stroke are recommended to take these three preventive medications. The pills used separately are already a standard treatment given to any patient with myocardial infarction,” said Perez.
Cardiologist Dr. Nicolas Moussalem spoke about cardiovascular diseases using local examples based on cases in Lebanon, "the problem in Lebanon is that not a lot of attention is given to cholesterol, and because of how expensive the treatment can be some people tend to dismiss it."
Cardiovascular diseases are the main cause of death worldwide, and they are responsible for half of all deaths in Lebanon. Thus, controlling cardiovascular risk factors is essential for patients. Despite the established efficacy of cardiovascular risk medications, lack of adherence by patients in taking their medication reduces effectiveness and is the primary reason for a lowered clinical benefit contributing significantly to the worsening of diseases and deaths among world populations.
Perez also explained about the benefits of the polypill which has shown improvement in medication adherence, better control of risk factors such as systolic blood pressure and lowering bad cholesterol ( LDL-C,) compared with standard care among patients with cardiovascular disease or at high risk of their first heart crisis, noting, “better medication adherence may be associated with a reduction in major cardiovascular events and cost savings.”
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