Hospital da Luz Cardiologist Alerts to Aortic Stenosis
Pedro Araújo Gonçalves, Hospital da Luz Lisboa cardiologist, participated in the TV show “Diário da Manhã, at TVI 24 channel, on January 29, on the subject of a European campaign to alert the population to aortic stenosis. This is a cardiac disease relatively unknown, but affecting one in 15 individuals over 70 and with potentially fatal consequences, if not diagnosed early enough.
Aortic stenosis is “an obstruction of the aortic valve, through which the heart pumps blood for the whole body”, explained Pedro Araújo Gonçalves. When there is obstruction, the valve must be replaced – a procedure now possible through catheterization –, otherwise the heart will not be able to accomplish its function. The cardiologist is also a member of the direction board of the Portuguese Association of Cardiovascular Intervention, which joined a European campaign to divulge the disease, under the theme “Hearts for Tomorrow”. Pedro Araújo Gonçalves explained that one of the symptoms – strong chest pain in effort – is relatively easy to identify and associate to a coronary problem. “The other symptoms are harder to perceive and identify, like fatigue and fainting”, for they are vague and may correspond to other pathologies. Therefore, it is important for the population, particularly the elderly, to be alert to these symptoms.