Who would not want to prevent their own heart attack? Research has shown that 80% of heart attacks are preventable by making healthy lifestyle changes. Hopefully you are going for regular physical exams and discussing your risk factors for heart disease with your healthcare provider. But how well are our doctors doing at preventing future heart attacks?
A study published in the May 2009 issue of the International Journal of Clinical Practice suggests that our doctors need to focus more attention on preventing disease rather than just treating disease. This study evaluated over 13,000 adults and found that only 19% of people who developed heart disease had it picked up during a routine screening. That means that 81% of the people who developed heart disease only had it diagnosed when they became symptomatic.
The moral of this story:
1) Get regular physical exams
2) “Know your numbers” (blood pressure, cholesterol, weight, waist circumference)
3) Discuss your risk factors (initiate the discussion with you healthcare provider and find out what you can do to decrease your risk of a heart attack)
“Take Charge: A Woman’s Guide to a Healthier Heart” is a new book discussing heart disease and stroke risk factors and heart healthy lifestyle habits that can help you prevent heart disease. For more info visit http://www.heart-strong.com