JRMC U: Heart Health


Join Jamestown Regional Medical Center (JRMC) on Wednesday, February 20th at noon for a free educational forum on heart health.  This forum is part of the “JRMC U” education series and will be hosted by the JRMC Cardiac Rehab department.

Outpatient cardiac rehab demonstrates a 25% reduction in long-term, all-cause and cardiovascular mortality rates. At JRMC Cardiac Rehab, they focus on making positive lifestyle changes in diet, exercise and smoking cessation that will enable individuals to better manage their heart conditions. In honor of American Heart Month, JRMC Cardiac Rehab would like to educate individuals on achieving optimal outcomes for preventing and controlling heart disease. A free, light lunch will be provided. Please RSVP to (701)952-4796 as space is limited.


The ‘Low-Down’ On Lipids

High cholesterol and lipid levels significantly increase a person’s risk of developing chest pain, heart attack and stroke. The World Health Organization estimates that 20% of all strokes and over 50% of all heart attacks can be linked to high cholesterol. Unfortunately, this is a problem that many people do not take very seriously. After all, high cholesterol does not cause any symptoms until it is too late.

Debra Geier, MD, Sanford Health


Fats in the blood come in several different varieties. The details are sometimes difficult to keep straight. Let’s review:

Cholesterol is a fat-like substance circulating in the blood. Some cholesterol comes from the foods you eat, however much of it is produced in the liver. Cholesterol comes in several different forms. Usually, the focus is primarily on LDL and HDL.

LDL is also referred to as “bad cholesterol”. An easy way to remember this is to think of “L” as standing for lousy. LDL is generally the main treatment target.

HDL is “good cholesterol”. “H” stands for healthy. HDL helps bind bad cholesterol so it can be filtered out of the body. Higher is better!

Triglycerides are another type of fat in the blood. Although high levels do increase cardiovascular risk, triglycerides are generally considered a secondary target after LDL.

Ask your doctor…
Although this may seem simplistic, it is the true answer. When speaking of cholesterol, and more specifically of LDL, there is no normal range. What your value should be depends on your individual risk factors for heart disease. Major risk factors include cigarette smoking, hypertension, family history, age and low HDL. However, what if you are diabetic, or have peripheral vascular disease, HDL>60, or prior heart attack? One size does not fit all.

This also depends on each individual’s risk profile, however most agree that everyone with high cholesterol should start with a little “TLC”. I’m not talking about tender loving care. Actually, there is nothing tender or loving about it. It takes hard work and dedicated changes. TLC refers to therapeutic lifestyle change. These changes include diet, exercise, weight loss, reducing stress and quitting smoking to name a few. Even if your cholesterol numbers don’t budge these are healthy steps to take. Get motivated and get moving!

There are several prescription medication options for treatment of high cholesterol if therapeutic lifestyle change is not enough. Statins are the most powerful drugs for lowering LDL cholesterol and are the most effective drug for prevention of coronary heart disease, heart attack, stroke and death. Not everyone can tolerate statins however. Other options include Zetia, bile acid sequestrants, niacin and fibrates. Your doctor can decide if these medications are right for you.

A wide array of nutritional supplements are available and marketed for their cholesterol-lowering effect. Although most are probably not harmful, the benefit of these supplements has not been demonstrated or proven.

The treatment of high cholesterol is a lifelong process which starts with knowing your numbers. Don’t put off testing or treatment for another year. Make 2012 a New Year for a New You!!

Heart Health at Any Age

Go Red For Women
More women die of cardiovascular disease than from the next four causes of death combined, including all forms of cancer. But 80 percent of cardiac events in women could be prevented if women made the right choices for their hearts involving diet, exercise and abstinence from smoking. Make it your mission to learn all you can about heart attacks and stroke — don’t become a statistic. CALL 9-1-1

Heart Attack
A heart attack occurs when the blood flow to a part of the heart is blocked, usually by a blood clot. If this clot cuts off the blood flow completely, the part of the heart muscle supplied by that artery begins to die.

Signs of a Heart Attack:

  1. Uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain in the center of your chest. It lasts more than a few minutes, or goes away and comes back.
  2. Pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach.
  3. Shortness of breath with or without chest discomfort.
  4. Other signs such as breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness.
  5. 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.

If you have any of these signs, don’t wait more than five minutes before calling for help. Call 9-1-1…Get to a hospital right away.

Stroke is the No. 3 cause of death in America. It’s also a major cause of severe, long-term disability. Stroke and TIA (transient ischemic attack) happen when a blood vessel feeding the brain gets clogged or bursts. The signs of a TIA are like a stroke, but usually last only a few minutes. If you have any of these signs, don’t wait more than five minutes before calling for help.

Call 9-1-1 to get help fast if you have any of these, but remember that not all of these warning signs occur in every stroke.

Signs of Stroke and TIAs

  1. Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body
  2. Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding
  3. Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes
  4. Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination
  5. Sudden severe headache with no known cause

Also, check the time so you’ll know when the first symptoms appeared. It’s very important to take immediate action. Research from the American Heart Association has shown that if given within three hours of the start of symptoms, a clot-busting drug can reduce long-term disability for the most common type of stroke.

Go Red For Women

In your 20’s http://www.goredforwomen.org/HeartHealthyInYour20s.aspx

In your 30’s http://www.goredforwomen.org/HeartHealthyInYour30s.aspx

In your 40’s http://www.goredforwomen.org/HeartHealthyInYour40s.aspx

In your 50’s http://www.goredforwomen.org/HeartHealthyInYour50s.aspx

In your 60+ http://www.goredforwomen.org/HeartHealthyInYour60s.aspx


For more information go to http://www.goredforwomen.org/index.aspx

American Heart Association