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According to HEART UK, coronary heart disease is the number one killer in the United Kingdom. Statistics show that 160,000 people die every year from heart and circulatory disease. Not only this, but 42,000 people die prematurely from cardiovascular diseases, and 73,000 die from coronary heart disease. These are startling statistics, and it is important to take the necessary steps to ensure you do not become another number. In this post, we are going to take a look at heart screenings – what they are and why they are important.
There are a number of different risk factors that could increase your likelihood of developing any type of heart disease. This include:
* Physical inactivity
* High blood pressure
* High blood cholesterol
* Tobacco smoking
* Family history of the disease
What Is A Heart Screening?
All types of screening examinations are designed to find a disease before symptoms begin to show. This is for the purpose of detecting a disease at the earliest, and consequently, most treatable stage. Medical practitioners all over the world recommended screenings, and they are proven to reduce the number of deaths associated with the disease in question.
If you have a heart screening, there are a number of different things that may be evaluated. This includes the following:
* Blood pressure levels. Your doctor will measure the force of blood against the artery walls both when the heart is at rest and when it is beating.
* The amount of C-reactive protection in the blood. This is measured using a test entitled high-sensitivity C-reactive protein assay. When there is swelling or inflammation somewhere in the body, C-reactive protein appears in bigger amounts.
* Blood glucose levels. This is the quantity of sugar that is in the blood.
* Low-density lipoproteins (LDL). This is the amount of cholesterol that the blood carries. A build-up in the arteries can occur when there are high levels of LDL.
Your doctor may require further tests depending on the results from the former. This includes the likes of: coronary catheter angiography, myocardial perfusion imaging, coronary CT angiography, cardiac CT for calcium scoring, echocardiography, exercise cardiac stress test, and electrocardiography.
Who Needs To Have A Heart Screening?
There are a number of different circumstances that may mean your doctor recommends a heart screening. If you are displaying any unexplained symptoms, such as shortness of breath or chest pain, your doctor may order a heart test.
However, as mentioned, these tests are often carried out when there are no symptoms at all. Cardiac screening is recommended for healthy people, especially if your physical exam or personal history points to the risk of a heart problem. For instance, athletes can be at risk of a heart problem linked with a particular exercise.
Because of this, a doctor may recommend that an electrocardiogram be carried out before the person takes part in competitive sport. This is a test that checks if chest pain is caused by angina or a heart attack, and checks your heart rhythm and electrical system.
Hopefully, you now have a better understanding regarding what a heart screening is and why you need one. Athletes, in particular, are advised to have regular screening, and you may be called in for a heart test if there is a history of heart disease in your family.
If your doctor suggests a heart screening, don’t ignore their request. The sooner you can catch any problems, the better. At an appointment with a London Cardiovascular Clinic, you can obtain heart screenings, so please do not hesitate to book an appointment if this is something you would like to benefit from.