Identifying Kounis Syndrome among adults

Kounis Disease, also called Kounis Syndrome, is a rare but serious acute coronary syndrome that occurs when the coronary arteries are either damaged or narrowed by a blood clot. It can lead to acute coronary disease, heart attack, and other cardiac problems. It was first identified by a Greek doctor by name of Kounis in 1953. In India, the occurrence of cases reported with Kounis syndrome is less than 1% among all heart-related diseases. It can be caused by a variety of things, such as genetic mutation, viral infection, bacterial infection, allergic reactions to chemicals, food products, insect bites, or medication side effects.

Kounis syndrome usually occurs in people between the ages of 40 and 70 with a history of acute coronary disease, atopy, hypertension, smoking, diabetes, or hyperlipidemia.  It can also affect people without cardiovascular risk factors or pre-existing coronary artery disease (CAD) with chest pain or angina-equivalent symptoms accompanied by symptoms of systemic allergic reactions.

Symptoms and Signs of Kounis Syndrome:

The symptoms of Kounis Syndrome are similar to those of other heart diseases, so it is difficult to diagnose it correctly without doing tests such as X-rays and ECG tests. The clot blocks blood flow to the heart muscle, causing chest pain and heart attack symptoms. However, some of the characteristics that are associated with this condition are angina-like chest pains, rashes, irritation, fever, shortness of breath, nausea, vomiting, and severe pain in the left arm or left side of the chest when pressing on it with their fingers or hands. 

Diagnosis and Treatment:

Kounis syndrome is a form of acute coronary disease and can be fatal if it goes unreported and untreated. An immediate diagnosis is essential to initiate treatment early including urgent management of both anaphylaxis and cardiac infarction. The common tests to diagnose this condition are EKG, chest x-ray, echocardiography, and angiography; it can also identify if the condition has made the occurrence of myocardial ischemia or infarction.

The treatment for Kounis Syndrome depends on the severity of the symptoms and whether it has been diagnosed before or after a heart attack. If it has been diagnosed before a heart attack, then surgery may be needed to open up narrowed arteries. However, very rare incidences have come up where surgeries are recommended to treat Kounis. If it has been diagnosed after a heart attack, then medication may be prescribed to help prevent another one from happening again. Treatment for Kounis syndrome includes antibiotics as well as anticoagulant drugs. Medications for this condition prescribed by the Doctor include IV fluids normal saline, dual anti-platelets, statin, and low molecular weight heparin. He or she should be under supervision for at least 24 hours before transferring into the ward and discharged.

A person with this syndrome is at a greater risk for coronary blockage in the future. Thus, cardiologists suggest people with this condition go through a health check every once in a while in order to avoid the recurrence of the disease or any other cardiovascular diseases. 



Views expressed above are the author’s own.


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