Chronic diseases are the major causes of morbidity and mortality across the globe in developed and developing countries, and in countries transitioning from former socialist status.
Chronic diseases – including heart disease, cancer, stroke, diabetes, and respiratory diseases – share major risk factors beyond genetics and social inequalities including tobacco use, unhealthy diet, physical inactivity, and lack of access to preventive care.
Coronary artery disease, one type of heart disease, is the leading cause of heart attacks. The most common cause of coronary artery disease is atherosclerosis, a condition that occurs when plaque builds up in the arteries that supply blood to the heart.
Coronary artery disease (CAD) is the single most common cause of death in the developed world, responsible for about 1 in every 5 deaths, says NCBI.
Calgary student and scientist Zeel Patel (Image credit: CTV News)
The key to preventing cardiovascular disease, also called coronary artery disease (CAD), is managing your risk factors, such as high blood pressure, high total cholesterol, or high blood glucose. But how do you know which risk factors you have? The best way to find out is through screening tests during regular doctor visits.
Earlier photos of Zeel Patel (Image source: Twitter)
A 16 years old Calgary resident named Zeel Patel has invented a new artery-disease screening test for clogged arteries that is many times faster and cheaper than what’s available now. The build-up of plaque in the arteries can lead to heart attacks, stroke, or death.
Patel says his invention is able to detect the signs of atherosclerosis instantly, unlike current tests that have to be sent to a lab. And because the materials used are cheap, the test would cost only about $7—much lower than current test costs. It’s so simple, it could even be used at home.
He explains the process of the test, “What my chemical reaction is actually based off of is that it uses potassium phosphate and adds it potassium iodide, which targets the lipid peroxide, so molecules on the surface of the biomarker… and it produces a triiodide ion”. (Source: CTV News)