'The Bus of Health' calls again for the 8,400 people included in the project to study their evolution

The project has helped prevent future arterial diseases to 71.7% of people with risk factors

'The Health Bus' will once again cite the 8,402 people visited in the first phase of the medical project, from 2015 to 2018, to carry out cardiovascular and renal disease prevention tests. This second phase of the study, which will take place from 2019 to 2021, will allow us to see the evolution of these people. In addition, more tests for early diagnosis of vascular diseases, such as the determination of pulse wave velocity, to determine arterial stiffness, have been included.

71.7% of the 8,402 people who have undergone the preventive tests carried out by 'The Bus of Health' from January 2015 to December 2018 had some type of atheromatous disease, that is, the decrease in caliber of the arteries by the accumulation of fat plates.

The president of the Diputación de Lleida, Rosa Maria Perelló, has highlighted the importance of this project to turn Lleida into a pioneer territory in health policies and has stressed the importance that in this second phase the desired objectives can be achieved taking into account that the Health is the main concern of people.

"Have a technology like the 'Bus of Health’ has made it possible to bring it closer to the whole territory and to carry out these tests for early detection of cardiovascular and renal diseases, which are aimed at people with risk factors ", said the president of the Lleida Provincial Council during the press conference of the presentation of the results obtained so far in 'The Bus of Health'.

The Deputation of Lleida and Renal Jaume Arnó Foundation, jointly with the Department of Health of the Generalitat of Catalonia and the Unit of Diagnosis and Treatment of Arterothrombotic Diseases (UDETMA) of the Biomedical Research Institute of Lleida (IRBLleida), launched 'The Bus of Health' in January 2015. The project has an approximate contribution of €425,000 a year by the Deputation of Lleida.

During these four years, the bus has moved through 28 municipalities in the counties of Lleida to make an early diagnosis to a target population between 45 and 70 years, randomly selected to meet one or more of one of the cardiovascular risk factors (hypertension, smoking, obesity, dyslipidemia...)

In total, 8,402 people have gone through the medicalized bus, 4,265 gifts and 4,137 men.

The data has determined the following results:

Of the 8,402 people, unknown pathology has been found to:

  • 71.1% (atheromatous disease with more presence in the case of men)
  • 15.7% kidney disease
  • 34.2% new diagnosis of hypertension
  • 1.7% diabetes and 33% prediabetes
  • 25% elevated cholesterol
  • 1.5% (17 patients) with aneurysm of the abdominal aorta (which have the aorta more dilated than normal and has weaker walls with the consequent risk of rupture).

It should be noted that, of all the people precociously diagnosed, 123 had to be referred to a hospital specialist for severe arterial disease, which means that in most cases these tests have been preventive. Specifically, 106 people have been referred to the Neurology Service of the Arnau University Hospital of Vilanova de Lleida (HUAV) and 17 people to the Vascular Surgery Service of the HUAV.

With the incorporation of new diagnostic tests in September 2015 (spirometry, transcranial ultrasound) it has been discovered that:

  • 13% present altered spirometry (measurement of respiratory capacity).
  • 4.2% show an atrial arrhythmia.
  • 26% show a degree of cardiovascular risk (due to the performance of the glycosylation tests AGEs).

It has also been found that 60% of people who have gone through 'The Bus of Health' are smokers and / or ex-smokers.

The coordinator of the project, Dr. Marcelino Bermúdez, has highlighted the importance of the second phase, which he described as "ambitious from the scientific point of view" because it involves "an analysis of all the factors that directly or indirectly they can affect the state of health".

For its part, the director of IRBLleida, Elvira Fernández, recalled that this study is based on early detection of diseases that are unknown to the patient and his doctor, and not just one, but diverse. Atheromatosis, kidney disease, diabetes, respiratory disease, that is, it covers a number of chronic diseases that, on the other hand, are typical of the current society that is aging. It has also identified poverty and sedentary lifestyle as important current risk factors.

The coordinator of the project to Primary Care of Lleida, Cristina Farràs, added that in the project they introduce nurse collaborators in almost all health centers in order to follow up on those patients who were diagnosed with some disease and were referred to your centers to do the follow-ups.

The director of the Renal Jaume Arnó Foundation, Ignacio Gracia, has said that the results are extraordinary. He was especially grateful for the support of the Provincial Council in this project and thanked that there are projects of this kind that put health care at the forefront.

Finally, the manager of the Lleida Health Region and Alto Pirineu i Aran Health Region, Divina Farreny, stressed that the determinants of health are outside the health system by 80 percent, and therefore the commitment of the Provincial Council , as facilitator of this fund, allows to achieve results that will help to have a more complete health system.