World Heart Day

The World Heart Federation celebrates World Heart Day Annually On 29 September. World Heart Day was founded in 2000 by the World Heart Foundation to inform and educate people around the globe concerning the dangers of heart disease and stroke which are the world’s leading causes of death.

The heart is a muscular organ in most animals, which pumps blood through the blood vessels of the circulatory system. Blood provides the body with oxygen and nutrients, as well as assists in the removal of metabolic wastes. In humans, the heart is located between the lungs, in the middle compartment of the chest. In humans, other mammals, and birds, the heart is divided into four chambers: upper left and right atria; and lower left and right ventricles. Commonly the right atrium and ventricle are referred together as the right heart and their left counterparts as the left heart. Fish, in contrast, have two chambers, an atrium and a ventricle, while reptiles have three chambers. In a healthy heart blood flows one way through the heart due to heart valves, which prevent backflow. The heart is enclosed in a protective sac, the pericardium, which also contains a small amount of fluid. The wall of the heart is made up of three layers: epicardium, myocardium, and endocardium.

The heart pumps blood with a rhythm determined by a group of pacemaking cells in the sinoatrial node. These generate a current that causes contraction of the heart, traveling through the atrioventricular node and along the conduction system of the heart. The heart receives blood low in oxygen from the systemic circulation, which enters the right atrium from the superior and inferior venae cavae and passes to the right ventricle. From here it is pumped into the pulmonary circulation, through the lungs where it receives oxygen and gives off carbon dioxide. Oxygenated blood then returns to the left atrium, passes through the left ventricle and is pumped out through the aorta to the systemic circulation−where the oxygen is used and metabolized to carbon dioxide.The heart beats at a resting rate close to 72 beats per minute. Exercise temporarily increases the rate, but lowers resting heart rate in the long term, and is good for heart health.

Cardiovascular diseases (CVD) are the most common cause of death globally as of 2008, accounting for 30% of deaths. Of these more than three quarters are a result of coronary artery disease and stroke. Risk factors include: smoking, being overweight, little exercise, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and poorly controlled diabetes, among others. Cardiovascular diseases frequently do not have symptoms or may cause chest pain or shortness of breath. Diagnosis of heart disease is often done by the taking of a medical history, listening to the heart-sounds with a stethoscope, ECG, and ultrasound. Specialists who focus on diseases of the heart are called cardiologists, although many specialties of medicine may be involved in treatment.

Each year 17.3 million people die of cardiovascular disease, 80% in the developing world. The World Heart Federation exists to prevent and control these diseases through awareness campaigns and action, promoting the exchange of information, ideas and science among those involved in cardiovascular care, advocating for disease prevention and control by promoting healthy diets, physical activity and tobacco free living at an individual, community and policy maker level.

The World Heart Federation is a nongovernmental organization based in Geneva, Switzerland which Was formed In 1978 after the International Society of Cardiology merged with the International Cardiology Federation (which had been founded in 1970) to form the International Society and Federation of Cardiology. This body changed its name in 1998 to the World Heart Federation. The WHF is committed to uniting its members and leads the global fight against heart disease and stroke, with a focus on low-and middle-income countries. The World Heart Federation is the world’s only global body dedicated to leading the fight against heart disease and stroke via a united community of almost 200 member organizations that bring together the strength of medical societies and heart foundations, from more than 100 countries covering the regions of Asia-Pacific, Europe, East Mediterranean, the Americas and Africa.

The World Heart federation hosts the World Congress of Cardiology. A preliminary and somewhat informal international meeting of cardiologists was held in Prague in 1933, but the advent of Nazism and World War II prevented further international cooperation in the field until 1946, when a Cardiological Congress took place in Mexico City. The first true World Congress was held in 1950 The first World Congress of Cardiology was convened in Paris in September 1950 under the aegis of the International Society of Cardiology, which had itself been founded four years previously. Subsequent congresses were held at four-year intervals until 2006; since then, they have been held at two-year intervals.

 

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