Result of the big flu waves: number of heart attacks increased significantly

Result of the big flu waves: number of heart attacks increased significantly

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Medical emergencies: The flu wave leads to a sharp increase in cardiac emergency patients
The violent flu epidemic has caused the number of patients with a heart attack to increase dramatically in some places. According to doctors, the heart risk could be reduced by a flu shot.

Flu wave ensures numerous hospital stays
The current flu wave has not only ensured that countless people with symptoms such as cough, sore throat and fever are in bed, but also brought some patients to the hospital with far more dramatic consequences. The number of people who have had flu symptoms in the Hannover Medical School (MHH) since the beginning of the year has increased by more than a third. Heart attack patients increased by the same amount during this period.

Vaccine does not adequately cover current flu
"In our central emergency room, we have seen an increase of 38 percent in patients with flu symptoms since the beginning of the year," said Professor Dr. Tobias Welte, director of the clinic for pneumology, according to a message from the clinic.

The comparative period is the beginning of 2016. In addition, there has been a dramatic increase in deteriorations in obstructive respiratory diseases such as asthma or COPD and in severe pneumonia due to influenza diseases.

According to Professor Welte, two main reasons are responsible for this: firstly, the willingness to vaccinate has decreased significantly, and secondly, the flu vaccine used has only insufficiently covered this flu.

Number of heart attack patients rose sharply
As the message says, as a result of the flu wave, the number of patients with a heart attack rose sharply in the first weeks of 2017.

"The number increased from 56 heart attack patients in May and June 2016 to 75 in January and February 2017," said Professor Dr. Johann Bauersachs, director of the Clinic for Cardiology and Angiology, "that of severe cases of acute heart failure even by 50 percent."

Professor Dr. Axel Haverich, Director of the Clinic for Cardiac, Thoracic, Transplant and Vascular Surgery, can also confirm this trend: "In the past two months, we have had to provide more patients with a bypass."

Both chief physicians emphasized: "The flu vaccination clearly reduces the number of heart attacks in older or high-risk patients, unfortunately it is not sufficiently perceived."

Vaccination especially for people from risk groups
Even if it does not offer 100 percent protection, it is recommended by the Standing Vaccination Commission (STIKO) especially for high-risk groups (pregnant women, people aged 60 and over and people with chronic diseases). The recommendation primarily affects medical and nursing staff.

The Robert Koch Institute (RKI) wrote about the effectiveness of the vaccine of the current season: “Even if less than half of those vaccinated are protected against an illness with influenza, vaccination can cause a great deal due to the frequency of influenza diseases Number of diseases can be prevented. "

Multiplication of diseases
In addition to the flu wave, other viral infections also play a role this winter, which can also be felt in the MHH. "The number of sick days among our doctors and nursing staff has also been significantly higher in recent months," says Professor Bauersachs.

"The annually recurring virus epidemics, influenza or other pathogens, lead to a multiplication of illnesses, which burden the surgeries, but also the hospitals far beyond the normal measure," said Professor Welte.

Therefore, there are increasing waiting times. "Our health system lacks structures to respond to the temporary increase in the number of patients." (Ad)

Author and source information

Video: Flu increasing your risk of a heart attack? (June 2022).