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Celebrating a rejuvenated heart

By Sudha Menon

PUNE, AUG. 13. Independence Day this year will bring a special kind of independence for 12-year-old Pallavi Patil who underwent treatment for a heart ailment and hundreds of others who have undergone by-pass surgery to get a fresh lease of life.

In a unique effort to bring home the fact that having a heart attack does not mean the end of a normal life, the Cardiological Society of Pune will organise a `Dream Run/Walk' on August 15, in which over a 100 patients who have undergone by-pass surgery will participate.

`Fit for any activity'

"Patients who undergo a major cardiac episode lose confidence in themselves and in their ability to lead a normal life. With this dream run the effort is to prove to them that post-treatment, a rejuvenated heart is perfectly capable of undertaking any activity that normal people do'', says Dr. Shirish Hiremath, the Director, Cath Lab, the Ruby Hall clinic and the man behind this event. "What these patients have to bear in mind, is that exercise is not just desirable but a vital part of their post-treatment life, '' he adds.

The dream run will start from the College of Agriculture here where the participants will arrive with their medical records and pass through populated areas of the city before culminating at the Fergusson College where eminent cardiologists will answer queries from the patients and their families.

According to the Cardiological Society, a variety of factors including stress and a faulty lifestyle are leading to an increasing incidence of heart disease, especially among youngsters.

At least six to seven percent of the city's population suffers from heart ailments with doctors at various hospitals performing 125 angioplasties in the city last month.

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