Cardiovascular diseases, which include those that affect the heart and the circulatory system (arteries and veins) are a very serious problem: figures from the World Health Organisation show that they caused about 18 million deaths in 2019, which is 32% of the world total deaths. These mortality figures are in addition to its chronic nature, which directly impact patients' quality of life and generates dependence, the risk of complications, and very high health and socioeconomic costs. All of this makes them the main problem facing public health today.
There are many diseases that affect cardiovascular health. The most common are high blood pressure, arteriosclerosis, angina, myocardial infarction, heart failure, and cerebrovascular accident or stroke. Some of these diseases do not present symptoms and sudden death can be their first manifestation. It follows that prevention is a key factor, as the experts point out. And the fact is that, while cardiovascular health problems do have risk factors such as age, sex or genetic predisposition, healthy life habits and prevention tools aimed at healthy youngsters and the risk population are very useful for reducing the effects.
Awareness-raising and publicity about cardiovascular health, together with boosting scientific research, will be the goals of the 31st edition of La Marató de TV3 and Catalunya Radio, which will roll out its campaign throughout this year and will culminate in the programme on 18 December. Catalonia has a sound network of research groups in cardiovascular disease; thanks to the funds raised they will be able to achieve breakthroughs in the prevention, treatment and prognosis of these diseases with the goal of increasing life expectancy and quality of life for the people who are affected.