Men over the age of 45 and woman over the age of 55 with one additional heart disease risk factor are at increased threat. The risk factors include high blood pressure, high total cholesterol, high LDL (“Bad”) cholesterol, low HDL (“Good”) cholesterol, Diabetes, overweight or obesity, family history of heart disease, sleep apnea, current or former use of tobacco, and lack of regular exercise, all increased the risk of future heart attack and stroke. Patients with these risk factors should consider evaluation for early detection of atherosclerotic heart disease.
The use of non-invasive atherosclerosis imaging test for at risk patient population using a variety of modalities has allowed detection and early treatment of heart disease. While chest pain or shortness of breath can be signs of heart disease, many individuals with disease having no symptoms. Depending on an individual’s symptoms and risk factors a variety of detection options are available.
Noninvasive screening test allow cardiologist to look inside her arteries for blockages that cause heart attack or stroke. These images are acquired from outside the body in a short period of time and can potentially be lifesaving.
If test identified and heart disease risk factors exist, preventative measures can be taken to prevent future buildup of plaque in the arteries supplying the heart and brain. Dietary changes, increased physical activity and fitness, and if necessary, medications may significantly reduce your heart disease risk of future heart attack or stroke. The earlier such plaques are detected, the more benefit one will drive from preventative measures. Our focus and goal is to shift from treatment of disease that has already occurred to prevention of the first event.