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You may be studying this course because you – or a member of your family or a friend – have been personally affected by cardiovascular diseases in some way. You may be professionally involved in looking after people with one of these diseases. Perhaps you are interested in health issues in general. Whatever your motivation or underlying reasons for studying this course, you will gain valuable insights into the extent of cardiovascular diseases and their treatment in the early twenty-first century. What you learn about avoiding or delaying cardiovascular diseases may also be incorporated into your own lifestyle for a healthier future for you and your family.

This course provides an introductory overview of some of the diseases of the heart and circulation (the cardiovascular system) and their medical management. This should help you get used to medical terminology and provide an introduction to the anatomy and physiology of the cardiovascular system.

Learning outcomes

After studying this course, you should be able to:

  • describe, in general terms, the different types of cardiovascular diseases, making clear the difference between the terms cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) and coronary heart disease (CHD)
  • identify different areas of the body likely to be affected by cardiovascular diseases
  • locate information on the internet, and understand and interpret data on disease occurrence
  • recognise the importance of historical and geographical factors in the changing profile of cardiovascular disease incidence worldwide
  • identify and list a number of risk factors that contribute to the development of cardiovascular diseases.

Course Curriculum

1. What are cardiovascular diseases?
A simple introduction 00:30:00
Broad defintions of cardiovascular diseases 00:30:00
The global picture of cardiovascular diseases 00:30:00
Decline of cardiovascular diseases in Western society? 00:30:00
Economic impact of cardiovascular diseases 00:30:00
2. Studying cardiovascular diseases
Using medical terminology 00:30:00
3. Risk factors
Lifestyle choices 01:30:00
Diabetes as a risk factor 01:00:00
4. Prevention is better than cure
Prevention strategies 00:00:00
The National Service Framework 01:30:00
Obesity and cardiovascular diseases 01:30:00
How individuals can prevent 01:30:00
5. Signs
Early warning signs 01:30:00
6. When things go wrong
When things go wrong 00:30:00
Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) 01:30:00
7. Treatment of cardiovascular diseases
Immediate treatment of cardiovascular diseases 01:00:00
8. Long-term treatment, and living with cardiovascular diseases
Secondary prevention using drugs 01:30:00
Issues with medications 01:00:00
When surgery is required 01:30:00
Test your knowledge – CVD 01:30:00
Acknowledgements – Understanding CVD 01:30:00
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