How can I find out my risk for
heart disease or stroke?
Keith Miller is
In the next 10 years, you will either have a heart attack, or you won’t. You will either have a stroke, or you won’t. The risk is either 0%, or 100%.
The bad news:
If you don’t identify your risk early, you won’t know if a heart attack or stroke is impending until the day it happens.
The good news:
While God only knows what the next 10 years hold for your health, you have the power to identify your risk. And as a Bryan Heart cardiologist, I’m here to tell you how.
Identify Your Risk for Heart Attack or Stroke
Using only a few, easily obtained pieces of information about your health, you can find out whether you’re on the right track or need some serious lifestyle intervention. You can help determine whether a little improvement in your diet and exercise program is enough, or whether you may benefit from a medication to lower your blood pressure or your cholesterol level.
If you are in your:
50s or 60s
Age alone becomes a very important risk factor for heart disease. Even if you’re seemingly healthy you may be at risk.
You aren’t off the hook, and depending on other risk factors blood pressure or cholesterol lowering medications may help you.
Taking a Dose of My Own Medicine
I recently did my own cardiovascular health assessment.
Here are my stats:
- 52-year-old white male with:
- Total cholesterol of 255 mg/dL
- HDL cholesterol of 71 mg/dL
- LDL cholesterol of 168 mg/dL
- Systolic blood pressure of 110 mmHg
- Non-diabetic without hypertension
My 10-year risk of having a heart attack or stroke was 3.2%. Not too bad!
I was a little disappointed that my LDL cholesterol was 168 mg/dL which is definitely higher than I would like. A little improvement in my diet and exercise should do the trick to fix this.
If that 10-year risk number had been 5% or more, with other risk factors like family history, I might have considered going on a cholesterol medicine.
What can be Measured can be Managed
The point is, heart attack and stroke risk can be measured. And what can be measured can be managed. Lifestyle changes and blood pressure or cholesterol treatment have been shown to reduce the risk of heart attack, stroke and death from cardiovascular disease in people with elevated risk.
The question is, are you one of those people? Don’t wait to find out!
Find Out Your Risk & Take Action if Needed
Take your cardiovascular risk estimator. It only take a few minutes.
If you don’t know your cholesterol numbers or you haven’t had your blood pressure checked in a while, talk to your doctor or consider taking part in a Health Screening offered by Bryan Health.
The next Health Screening where you can find out your cholesterol levels, A1c and other important health information is:
Thursday, November 21, 7-9 a.m.
Bryan LifePointe Campus, 7501 S. 27th St.
Learn More and Register
Other Free Risk Assessments:
Offered by Bryan Health
Find out your heart age, risk for heart disease and steps you can take to improve your heart health.
If you are at risk, you can choose to have a free consultation with a nurse to discuss ways to improve your heart health.
My Life Check
Offered by the American Heart Association
Get a heart health score with recommendations to make improvements and track your progress.
Take My Life Check