PCPs key in addressing obesity, circulatory diseases

PCPs can provide patients with help managing obesity and other lifestyle risk factors associated with circulatory-related diseases.

PCPs key in addressing obesity, other preventable risk factors
PCPs key in addressing obesity, other preventable risk factors

HealthDay News – Primary-care practitioners are increasingly called upon to manage circulatory and circulatory-related diseases among their patients, according to an article from Medical Economics.

“According to the 2010 National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey, 35% of patient visits for circulatory-related problems were to PCPs, compared with only 19% to cardiologists,” wrote Jeffrey Bendix, MA. “It's PCPs who must find ways to help patients make the lifestyle alterations necessary for coping with these diseases—or better yet, avoid getting them in the first place.”

The five leading causes of death among Americans in 2011, (heart disease, chronic lower respiratory diseases, stroke, diabetes, and nephrosis) have known causes that are largely preventable.

There are some significant ways that PCPs can aid patients in tackling these lifestyle factors. Early prevention is key, and encouraging healthier lifestyles at a younger age can prevent circulatory diseases later in life. PCPs can discuss weight even in pediatric and adolescent visits.

Although it may be uncomfortable to discuss these issues, persistent PCPs can help patients identify barriers to improving these habits. Clinicians can aid patients in setting attainable goals and offer medications and counseling to tackle risk factors such as obesity, lack of exercise, and hypertension.

References

  1. Bendix, J. Circulatory disorders: The role of primary care physicians. Medical Economics. (April 2014). Retrieved from: http://medicaleconomics.modernmedicine.com/medical-economics/news/circulatory-disorders-role-primary-care-physicians  
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