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How can a diabetic prevent heart complication?

Q: My father, 68 years old, is diabetic and has high blood pressure. How can he avoid developing a heart ailment? Also, what is the first aid that can be given at home for heart attack/angina pain?

A:For diabetics keeping blood cholesterol and BP low is even more important than controlling blood sugar. Most diabetics need to take statins to keep LDL-C below 80 mg%. Many will need ACE Inhibitors & other drugs to keep BP below 130/80 mmHg (lower if there is protein leakage in urine). Apart from this he should exercise regularly (brisk walking) to keep ideal body weight & get rid of a protruding tummy. Blood clotting is more common in diabetics and so they should take aspirin (75 mg or more) if they do not have any gastric/peptic ulcer problems. First aid at home for heart attack/angina at home is a tablet of disprin to chew and a tablet of sorbitrate 5 mg underneath the tongue, proper telephone numbers to call in an ambulance and contact a doctor, medical records (including previous ECG) ready to be carried with the patient.

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