February is American Heart Month, and Lake Regional Health System will celebrate with a cardiovascular screening for the general public on Saturday, Feb. 15. The screening will take place from 7:30 to 10 a.m. in the hospital’s third floor conference rooms. Registration is requested at lakeregional.com/loveyourheart.
Participants will receive free screenings for pulmonary function, body mass index, body fat analysis and blood pressure. Also available will be $17 Pocket EKGs, $5 lipid (cholesterol) profiles and $5 fasting blood sugar tests.
“Heart disease is the leading cause of death in America,” said Lake Regional Cardiologist Muthu Krishnan, M.D., FACC. “Screenings can provide early warning signs of heart disease, and the earlier heart disease is treated, the better.”
EKGs measure how well the heart is functioning and can indicate whether the heart has sustained previous damage, such as a silent heart attack. Nearly one-third of all heart attacks are “silent.” Someone who suffers a silent heart attack might feel something is wrong but not realize they’ve had a heart attack until an EKG reveals the damage.
If an individual has suffered a mild heart attack, that person is more likely to experience another attack and sustain more damage to the heart muscle.
“Both men and women should begin regular screenings for heart disease no later than age 45,” Dr. Krishnan said. “However, individuals who have a family history of heart disease or stroke should begin screenings at age 35 or earlier.”
Fasting is necessary 12 to 14 hours in advance of lipid and blood sugar tests. Water and prescribed medications may be consumed during the fast.