Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is an inherited condition in which the myocardium, the muscular walls of the heart, thickens. This makes it hard for the heart to pump blood to the rest of the body. The disease, which is caused by a genetic mutation, can be challenging to diagnose early because it causes little to no symptoms. This puts undiagnosed hypertrophic cardiomyopathy patients at a higher risk of suffering from severe complications such as cardiac arrest or sudden heart failure.
Patients who are suspected of having hypertrophic cardiomyopathy should undergo advanced cardiac imaging tests, such as electrocardiogram (ECG), echocardiogram, and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan. These tests, which are now widely available at many of Southeast Asia’s advanced cardiology centres, determine the extent of the condition and how it affects the heart’s function by far. Many Southeast Asian hospitals now also offer advanced genetic testing for HCM.
The availability of such advanced diagnostic equipment as well as other state-of-the-art medical technologies in Southeast Asia has played a major role in the region’s rise to medical tourism fame. The industry has grown significantly over the past several years and has long surpassed the $10 billion revenue mark. Much of this success is owed to the collective efforts of Singapore, Thailand, and Malaysia in improving their respective healthcare systems by relentlessly investing heavily in their medical infrastructure.
Aside from getting access to Western standards of healthcare, another huge advantage that cardiac patients can get from travelling to Southeast Asia for treatment is the lower overall treatment cost in the region. Various cost comparisons show that medical tourists in Asia pay just a fraction of the medical cost in the US or Europe.