Life Saving Screenings

Heart Screening Helps Shari

Last Year during Heart Month, February, Shari felt completely healthy. However, she decided to participate in the health screening at the hospital. The results showed a problem. After additional testing was done by her doctor, she was immediately admitted to the hospital for two days and two nights to start thinning her blood. Her heart was beating irregularly because of a p-wave problem that can lead to atrial fibrillation (AF). AF increases the heartbeats and heart attacks and strokes.

She would like to tell those folks that don’t want to get pre-screening, that their quality of life will improve by preventing strokes and heartaches by participating in preventative care screenings. In retrospect, the only thing that she realized was that she was a little more tired than usual. To correct Afib, doctors will try to get her heart to beat regularly. If the medication prescribed doesn’t help, then her heart could be shocked. From the screening, she also learned that her valves were operating properly and that she didn’t have any plaque. Shari has a family member that experienced a stroke that has left her unable to speak. As a step to prevent future problems she is happy to be on the path to having her heart beat right again.

She now feels more aware of her heart. She is so grateful for the knowledge that her heart needs to be fixed, and for the care that she received from Chris Peterson. If you are above 50 or have a history of heart problems in your family, please consider a screening that could save your life, and everyone please wear red tomorrow and each Friday in February for Heart Health Month.

Why getting screened may save your life-

Everyone can have the same story as Shari if they get regular screenings. According to the American Heart Association screenings should start at the age of 20. The frequency of screenings depends on an individual’s risk. If someone has been diagnosed with a cardiovascular condition it would be important that they get screened more frequently.

What types of screenings do I need?

  • Fasting Lipoprotein Test-Everyone should have a fasting lipoprotein profile taken every four to six years. This is a blood test that measures total cholesterol, LDL (bad) cholesterol, HDL (good) cholesterol and triglycerides.
  • Blood Pressure– Every time you go in to your doctor for a regular visit to your doctor you should be getting your blood pressure taken. If your visits are very infrequent you should be getting your blood pressure checked at least once every two years.
  • Weight/ Body Mass Index/BMI– During every healthcare visit it is important that this be checked. Especially if you are in an unhealthy BMI it is important that everyone take measures to manage and get their BMI to a healthy level.
  • Waist Circumference- If your BMI is greater than or equal to 25 kg/m2 it would be important to analyze your cardiovascular risk. This measurement allows your doctor to better understand your risk.
  • Blood Glucose Test- Starting at age 45 people need to be tested every 3 years. The higher the level the higher the chance a person has to develop insulin resistance, prediabetes or type 2 diabetes. When these conditions are left untreated they can often lead to heart disease or even stroke.
  • Discuss smoking, physical activity, and diet- Every visit with the doctor there should be a discussion about any unhealthy habits that are going. Doctors will discuss possible options to help you improve your overall health.


We will be holding a Heart Screening Clinic on February 28th Click on the link to call and schedule your appointment.

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Prepared by Tim Lucas
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