200,000 people living with a heart or circulatory disease in Kent

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For most people, the focus of February is likely to be Valentine’s Day but it is also the British Heart Foundation’s designated Heart Month and a key time to raise awareness about the risks associated with heart problems.

In the UK, 7.6 million people are living with a heart or circulatory disease and an ageing and growing population and improved survival rates from heart and circulatory events could see these numbers rise still further.


In Kent, 200,000 people are living with a heart or circulatory disease causing almost 4,500 deaths each year in the county. Many of these deaths could be preventable if more people know the signs and symptoms to look out for in order to access the right treatment if and when they need it:

- Heart palpitations – the feeling that your heart is fluttering, skipping a beat or beating too fast. This can signal many heart and blood vessel related conditions.
- Shortness of breath.
- Discomfort or pain in your chest, upper back and arms – also known as angina, this is often triggered by exercise but can occur at any time. These symptoms can also signal a heart attack.
- Weakness, dizziness and fainting.


Understanding heart conditions isn’t easy as there are lots of different types. Unfortunately, for many people suffering from these conditions, they go undetected. For others, they have been diagnosed but are still awaiting further cardiac or heart tests and a review with a Consultant Cardiologist.

Having quick access to specialist cardiology services close to home is important. KIMS Hospital in Maidstone, offers fast access to a dedicated unit for cardiology run by a team of Cardiac Nurses, Physiologists and Radiographers alongside Consultant Cardiologists.

Their state-of-the-art interventional cardiology suite offers access to the only private specialist Catheterisation Labs in Kent, which is used to perform minimally invasive procedures such as angioplasty (stent insertions) and ablation, as well as pacemaker implants, electrophysiology, and more.


Furthermore, KIMS Hospital’s unique Rapid Cardiac Assessment Service offers patients with symptoms a triage with a Cardiac Nurse, followed by a tailored set of heart tests to obtain a detailed insight into a patient’s cardiovascular health, and a face-to-face consultation with a Cardiologist without the need for a referral from either a GP or another specialist.

If you’re concerned about your health or a loved one’s, it’s important to seek professional advice.

Find out more about KIMS Hospital’s cardiology services here or call 01622 538186.


Some of the statistics in this article have been obtained courtesy of:

- BHF UK CVD Factsheet, January 2024, https://www.bhf.org.uk/statistics, accessed February 2024
- Kent-bhf-statistics, April 2023,
https://www.bhf.org.uk/statistics, accessed February 2024

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