According to the CDC, heart disease accounts for 1 in every 4 deaths in the U.S. making it the leading cause of death for both men and women in the nation. Preventative medicine can help you catch health issues before they become life threatening. RMC’s Early Detection Connection series aims to provide screenings to our community to help keep you out of emergent care and improve your health awareness.
So now, you have booked an appointment for Heart Day. We are so excited to see you there! Make sure you are fasting for 12 hours prior to your appointment, and arrive 15 minutes before your scheduled time. Here is an overview of the tests that you will complete during your visit:
An EKG, or an electrocardiogram test, normally takes around 3 minutes to complete. While lying down, electrodes will be placed on your chest, arms, and legs. The machine will read the electric signals that travel through your heart, and will display the results on a computer monitor and/or printed out on paper.
Please note that the EKG only records the electricity in your body but does not send any into your body so there is little to no risk of having an EKG done.
A lipid profile can also be known as a lipid panel, cholesterol panel, or lipid test. This test measures the lipids in your blood to measure total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL), very low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (VLDL), High-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL) , and triglycerides.
These different types of lipids can show if you are at risk of cardiovascular disease or other cholesterol related issues.
Blood Pressure Screening
You most likely have had your blood pressure taken at a routine doctor’s visit. An inflatable cuff is wrapped around your arm, then a healthcare professional will inflate the cuff to tighten around your arm, and measure your blood pressure.
If you are above 40 years in age or at risk for high blood pressure. (If you have diabetes, smoke, are overweight, or have kidney failure.) You should get your blood pressure checked every year.
Complete Metabolic Profile
This blood test measures 14 different substances in your blood. Glucose, calcium, sodium, albumin, ALP (alkaline phosphatase) ALT (alanine transaminase), and AST (aspartate aminotransferase). Like the lipid profile, abnormal levels of these substances can be an indicator of major health issues.
A c-protein or C-Reactive Protein Test is the last of the blood tests on our list. A high c-protein level can mean inflammation somewhere in your body. While it does not show where in the body the inflammation is occurring, it is still an extremely useful tool for doctors to see a more complete picture of your overall health. Increased c-protein is normally found in patients after a trauma like a heart attack or in a response to a bacterial infection.
Along with all of these tests, you’ll also receive a Heart Day t-shirt courtesy of RMC Foundation.
This Heart Day, know that as you take control of your health with early prevention, our team at RMC will be with you every step of the way!