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Year : 2022  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 76-82

Environmental risk factors for cardiovascular diseases using geographic information systems in an urban slum, Bengaluru

1 Department of Community Health, St. John's Medical College, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India
2 Division of Epidemiology and Community Health, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Deepa Srinivasan
Department of Community Health, St. John's Medical College, Sarjapur Road, John Nagar, Bengaluru - 560 034, Karnataka
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jncd.jncd_10_22

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Background: Cardiovascular disease (CVD), a growing epidemic, is influenced by various environmental factors, and the potential connection is not studied adequately. Objective: Hence, our study was aimed at assessing the environmental risk factors for CVD and assessing perceptions about the same among the adults residing in an urban slum, Bengaluru. Methods: A cross-sectional descriptive study was conducted using a validated environmental assessment tool – Environmental Profile of Community Health. It consists of two parts: (i) an assessment of the physical environment for CVD-risk behaviors and (ii) a questionnaire to collect residents' perceptions of their community's environmental risks for CVD. Results: The community had two environmental risk factors for CVD-tobacco stores and fast-food restaurants. The community had ten convenience stores, all of which sold tobacco products. Vegetables and fruits were available, and the community also had a park for recreation. We interviewed a total of four study participants with a mean age of 38.5 ± 5.4 years. All participants reported that they have seen people smoke outside public places and inside residences. They felt that society disapproved of women and children smoking while men were excluded. Study participants have reported seeing tobacco and junk food advertisements. Tobacco was easily accessible and available to all ages. Conclusions: The urban community was not CVD-friendly. Awareness regarding risk factors for CVD was good. Adequate urban planning, policy-level advocacy, and tailor-made lifestyle changes for patients are the key to preventing CVD.

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