Protect your heart
To protect your heart, it’s important to make your heart health a priority and understand the risk factors of the disease.
- Family history. If you have a parent who has or had heart disease, you’re more likely to be at risk.
- High blood pressure. When you have high blood pressure, your heart has to work harder and your risk for heart disease increases.
- High cholesterol. Your risk for heart disease increases when your blood cholesterol level goes up.
- Obesity. Even when you don’t have other risk factors, being overweight or obese raises your risk of heart disease, particularly if you have fat around your midsection (stomach area).
- Metabolic syndrome. Having a combination of three or more of these symptoms — a large waistline, insulin resistance, low levels of “good” cholesterol, and elevated triglyceride levels — raises the risk for heart disease.
- Diabetes. People with diabetes are at an increased risk of heart disease.
- Smoking. People who smoke are two to four times more likely to develop heart disease.
- Depression. Depression isn’t an independent risk factor but it’s associated with higher risk.
Heart attack symptoms vary
Keep in mind that although the stereotypical portrayal of a heart attack is one with intense chest-clutching, desperate gasping for air followed by a person dropping motionless to the ground, not all heart attacks are like that.
Chest pain, including pressure, tightness or squeezing, happens during some heart attacks, but signs may also include fatigue, shortness of breath, and pale or clammy skin. Even if these symptoms come and go, they could still be signs of a heart attack.
Heart disease is preventable if you are proactive. Do as much as you can to lower your risk and keep your heart healthy for years to come.
If you would like more information on heart health or to schedule an appointment, visit umphysicians.org/heart or call the location nearest you.
Fairview Southdale Hospital
6405 France Ave. S., W200 and W300, Edina, MN 55435
University of Minnesota Medical Center
516 Delaware St. SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455
Fairview Ridges Hospital
305 E. Nicollet Blvd., Suite 372, Burnsville, MN 55337
Fairview Lakes Medical Center
5200 Fairview Blvd., Level 2, Wyoming, MN 55092
Fairview Maple Grove Medical Center
14500 99th Ave. N., Maple Grove, MN 55369
Fairview Northland Medical Center
919 Northland Dr., Princeton, MN 55371