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Friday, October 30, 2009

Heart Disease Awareness

Have you noticed all the pink lately? Have you been swamped with breast cancer awareness on TV, the newspaper, even T-shirts? I've been thinking that the American Heart Association should have hired the same advertising agency. It seems we just aren't getting the message out about heart disease nearly as well as the breast cancer people and heart disease kills more people. Way more people. Lung cancer kills more Americans than breast cancer. That's not to say that breast cancer is unimportant. Thanks to the efforts of countless people, breast cancer deaths are on the decline due to early detection and treatment.

Let's take a moment to review some of the warning signs of a heart attack while remembering that for some, there will be no warning signs, only sudden death.
1. Chest pain or tightness, especially during exercise or exertion.
2. Shortness of breath
3. Pain in the shoulder, radiating down the arm or in the neck.
4. Nausea or sweatiness
Women often experience different symptoms than men. In fact, many report having no pain at all. Symptoms for women in addtion to those above are:
1. Unusual fatigue
2. Sleep disturbances
3. Anxiety
4. Weakness or dizziness

Let's also review some factors that can lead to heart disease.
1. Smoking
2. Excessive weight, especially around the waist
3. Diabetes
4. Family history
5. High blood pressure
6. High cholesterol

I hope I have given you some food for thought as we head into the weekend. I hope you will share this information with your loved ones. Let's raise awareness of heart disease and prevention.