Do you know your blood pressure?
Fri, 1/11/2013 2:02 PM
There are benefits to monitoring your blood pressure from home.
Checking your blood pressure at home is an important part of managing high blood pressure (hypertension). The American Heart Association and other organizations recommend anyone who has high blood pressure monitor his or her blood pressure at home. Here are a few of the benefits to home monitoring from the staff at Mayo Clinic.
Home monitoring can:
Because blood pressure monitors are available without a prescription, home monitoring is an easy step you can take to improve your condition. Before you get started, it's important to know the right technique and to find a good home blood pressure monitor.
Why do I need to monitor my blood pressure at home?
Monitoring your blood pressure at home offers several benefits. It can:
Not everyone can track blood pressure at home. If you have an irregular heartbeat, home blood pressure monitors might not give you an accurate reading. In some cases, the type of monitor you use could depend on your physical condition. If you're overweight or very muscular, you'll need to find a monitor with a larger arm cuff. If you have hearing loss, a monitor with a digital display may be more suitable.
For your convenience, Methodist Healthcare offers several options of home blood pressure monitoring devices to choose on the Home Medical Equipment Online Store. These lightweight blood pressure monitors fit comfortably on the wrist and feature a 60-reading memory storage. The monitors are able to compute the average of the last 3 readings taken.
This information is not intended to replace the medical advice of your doctor or health care provider. Please consult your health care provider for advice about a specific medical condition.
Would you recognize a heart attack?
Thu, 4/28/2011 1:11 PM
Would you recognize a heart attack? Symptoms of a heart attack are not the same for everyone. Most people think the only symptom of having a heart attack is extreme chest pain and the feeling of impending doom. Actually that is not typically the case. The most common symptom is shortness of breath but people present with different symptoms all the time. The majority of symptoms are listed below according to specific populations. These are the most frequent symptoms for each category but are certainly not the only ones each may present with a heart attack.
If you experience a sudden onset of any of these symptoms that do not resolve with rest and think you might be having a heart attack, what would you do? Drive yourself to the doctor or hospital? Call a family member or friend to drive you? No. You need to CALL 911 IMMEDIATELY!!
This will ensure you are given priority. If you are actively having a heart attack, we will have the cardiologist contacted and the Cardiac Catheterization Lab waiting. We certainly want to provide the best care possible and minimize any chance of disability or death.
Keri Morris, R.N., BSN is a Chest Pain & Stroke Coordinator at Methodist Le Bonheur Germantown Hospital. All opinions expressed here are those of their authors and not of their employer. Information provided here is for medical education only. It is not intended as and does not substitute for medical advice. Call 888.777.5959 for more information.
Reducing Risk of Heart Attack
Wed, 2/09/2011 10:57 AM
Smoking by itself increases the risk of coronary heart disease.
When it acts with the other factors, it greatly increases your risk from those factors, too. Smoking decreases your tolerance for physical activity and increases the tendency for blood to clot. It decreases HDL (good) cholesterol. Your risks increase greatly if you smoke and have a family history of heart disease. Smoking also creates a higher risk for peripheral artery disease and aortic aneurysm. It increases the risk of recurrent coronary heart disease after bypass surgery, too.
Many people find support groups and hotlines helpful when quitting smoking. Knowing that someone out there understands and shares your struggle can help you stay committed to being smoke-free. These organizations may offer personalized help or listings of classes and support groups in your community:
For more information on heart disease or heart treatment in Memphis, contact the Cardiovascular Institute at 888.777.5959.
Jennifer Hutzel is a Registered Nurse at the Methodist North Chest Pain Center. All opinions expressed here are those of their authors and not of their employer. Information provided here is for medical education only. It is not intended as and does not substitute for medical advice. Call 888.777.5959 for more information.
Heart Disease Prevention
Fri, 11/05/2010 10:24 AM
Weight gain and and an inactive lifestyle can influence heart diseases. These also increase the risk of high blood pressure, diabetes and increased blood cholesterol levels, which increases the risk of heart disease. Knowing how to maintain or lose weight and also to maintain cardiac (heart) fitness is important.
Tips on Calories:
Tips on Physical Activity:
Dr. Santhosh K.G. Koshy, DM, FACC, FSCAI is the Director of Interventional Cardiology and Director of UT services at Methodist Healthcare and the University of Tennessee Health Sciences Center in Memphis, Tenn. All opinions expressed here are those of their authors and not of their employer. Information provided here is for medical education only. It is not intended as and does not substitute for medical advice. Call 888.777.5959 for more information.
How to Survive a Heart Attack
Mon, 10/25/2010 4:01 PM
Fast action is the best weapon against heart attack! Artery opening treatments can stop a heart attack in its tracks. They can prevent or limit heart damage–but they need to be able to be performed as soon as possible after the symptoms begin.
Know the Early Symptoms of Heart Attacks
Early warning signs are present in nearly 50% of all heart attacks. Symptoms are usually present 24 hours before the attack but can occur 2-3 weeks beforehand. Symptoms are typically intermittent lasting from a few minutes to a few hours, followed by a pain-free period before the acute attack.
Non-specific signs include:
Specific signs of a heart attack:
Some heart attacks are sudden and intense—like the "movie heart attack," where no one doubts what's happening. But most heart attacks start slowly, with mild pain or discomfort. Often people affected aren't sure what's wrong and wait too long before getting help.
Immediately call 9-1-1 or your emergency response number so an ambulance (ideally with advanced life support) can be sent for you. As with men, women's most common heart attack symptom is chest pain or discomfort. But women are somewhat more likely than men to experience some of the other common symptoms, particularly shortness of breath, nausea/vomiting, and back or jaw pain.
Calling 9-1-1 is almost always the fastest way to get lifesaving treatment. Emergency medical services (EMS) staff can begin treatment when they arrive—up to an hour sooner than if someone gets to the hospital by car. EMS staff are also trained to revive someone whose heart has stopped. Patients with chest pain who arrive by ambulance usually receive faster treatment at the hospital, too. It is best to call EMS for rapid transport to the emergency room.
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