Malaysian Doctor Warns of Shorter Lifespans for Men Due to Late Medical Care

Dr. Wan warns that Malaysian men's reluctance to seek timely medical attention leads to shorter lifespans, often due to delayed treatment of severe health issues like heart disease. Heart failure, a major health problem, affects about 2% of adults and over 10% of those over 70, with a high risk of death in the first year after diagnosis.

Israel Ojoko
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Malaysian Doctor Warns of Shorter Lifespans for Men Due to Late Medical Care

Malaysian Doctor Warns of Shorter Lifespans for Men Due to Late Medical Care

Dr. Wan, a Malaysian doctor, has sounded the alarm about a concerning trend affecting men's health and longevity in the country. According to Dr. Wan, men in Malaysia tend to have shorter lifespans compared to women, largely due to their reluctance to seek timely medical attention. Many men, he notes, only visit the hospital after experiencing severe health issues like heart disease or stroke, often delaying treatment until their conditions have significantly worsened.

Why this matters: This trend has significant implications for public health and healthcare systems, as it may lead to increased healthcare costs and a higher burden on medical resources. Moreover, it highlights the need for greater awareness and education about the importance of preventive care and early intervention in men's health.

Heart failure, a syndrome caused by the heart's inability to pump blood effectively, is one of the major health problems that men often ignore until it reaches a critical stage. Also known as congestive heart failure (CHF), this condition can be caused by various factors, including coronary artery disease, heart attack, high blood pressure, atrial fibrillation, valvular heart disease, excessive alcohol consumption, infection, and cardiomyopathy. Diagnosis typically involves symptoms, physical findings, echocardiography, blood tests, and chest x-rays to determine the underlying cause.

The impact of heart failure on public health is significant, affecting about 2% of adults and more than 10% of those over the age of 70. In 2015 alone, an estimated 40 million people worldwide suffered from this condition. The risk of death in the first year after diagnosis is alarmingly high at about 35%, while the risk in the second year is slightly lower at less than 10% for those who survive the initial year. These mortality rates are comparable to those of some cancers, underscoring the severity of the issue.

Treatment for heart failure depends on the severity and specific case, and may include lifestyle changes, medications, and implanted devices. However, the key to improving outcomes and extending lifespans lies in early detection and intervention. Dr. Wan emphasizes that men must prioritize their health and seek medical attention promptly when experiencing symptoms, rather than waiting until their condition becomes life-threatening.

The issue of men's health and shorter lifespans is not limited to heart failure alone. The National Health and Morbidity Survey (NHMS) 2022 reveals that adolescent males in Malaysia have a higher prevalence of obesity at 17.1%, compared to 11.4% for females. This disparity in obesity rates between genders is a cause for concern, as it can lead to various health complications later in life.

Prof. Dr. Sharifa Ezat Wan Puteh, a health economics and public health specialist from Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM), attributes this trend to societal factors, stating,"Research shows that boys have a greater prevalence for obesity among children aged 5-19 in most high and upper-middle-income countries worldwide. This usually starts with excessive feeding since small and a typical family pattern of excess food consumption."

Dr. Azizan Abdul Aziz, president of the Malaysian Medical Association (MMA), offers another perspective, suggesting that"Adolescent girls may have a lower prevalence of obesity due to an earlier female pubertal growth spurt. Boys and girls are the same in their height gain or velocity prior to the onset of puberty, but girls grow faster once they reach puberty, which can happen as early as the age of eight."

As Malaysia grapples with the challenges of obesity and its long-term health implications, Dr. Wan's warning serves as a wake-up call for men to prioritize their well-being. By seeking timely medical care and adoptinghealthier lifestyles, men can take proactive steps to improve their health outcomes and extend their lifespans. The medical community and society as a whole must work together to raise awareness about the importance of early intervention and preventive care, ensuring that men receive the support they need to lead longer, healthier lives.

Key Takeaways

  • Men in Malaysia have shorter lifespans due to delayed medical attention.
  • Heart failure is a major health issue, often ignored until critical stage.
  • Early detection and intervention are key to improving heart failure outcomes.
  • Obesity rates are higher among adolescent males in Malaysia, a concern for future health.
  • Men must prioritize health, seek timely care, and adopt healthier lifestyles.