Kirkintilloch East MP Stuart McDonald has called for greater awareness and improved treatment of heart valve disease during a heart check-up in Parliament recently.
Mr McDonald was delighted to hear about the charity Heart Valve Voice behind the initiative which is highlighting heart valve disease in the UK. He had his heart checked at the awareness, hosted by the charity which involved a heart specialist listening to his heart using a stethoscope.
A recent survey revealed 94 per cent of the over 60s in the UK do not know what aortic stenosis is, and 72 per cent of over 60s reported that they rarely, or never, have their hearts listened to by a doctor. This is despite annual mortality of severe aortic stenosis being considerably higher than most cancers and heart valve disease affecting approximately one million people over 65 years of age in the UK.
If left untreated, heart valve disease is irreversible and can progress to heart failure and ultimately death.
Mr McDonald said: “It was fascinating to learn more about heart valve disease in Parliament. This disease affects a high proportion of the UK population, yet it’s worrying that there are such low levels of awareness and concern across the country. I welcome the work of Heart Valve Voice in raising awareness and seeking to improve diagnosis and treatment of heart valve disease and I will do everything I can to work with them to support their aims in Cumbernauld, Kilsyth and Kirkintilloch.”