Heart Disease

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    Dialysis patients are much more likely than the general population to develop heart and blood vessel disease. This increased risk is related to kidney disease and other health problems like diabetes and high blood pressure. For this reason, it’s very important for dialysis patients to take measures to help prevent heart and blood vessel problems. If heart and blood vessel problems occur, patients need to follow their treatment plan carefully to avoid complications like heart attacks and strokes.
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    A , Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease), answered
    Having congestive heart failure will likely result in taking a number of medications, and at times it means having a device like an implantable defibrillator. There are a wide a range of treatments for congestive heart failure, from medications to implantable device to artificial pumps and even heart transplant. Which treatment is right for you depends on the severity of your heart failure and its associated symptoms.
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    There are two different surgical approaches that can be utilized for tricuspid valve repair surgery: traditional or minimally invasive.

    During traditional tricuspid valve surgery, the surgeon makes a 6- to 8-inch long incision down the center of the sternum (breastbone) to open the chest, providing direct access to the heart. In minimally invasive surgery, the cardiothoracic surgeon makes a 2- to 4-inch, J-shaped incision that opens part of the chest. This potentially can reduce hospital stay, and help speed up recovery time.

    Minimally invasive surgery is not appropriate for all people, but the cardiothoracic surgeon will recommend the surgical approach that is safest based on the person's individual symptoms and circumstances.

    This content originally appeared online in "The Patient Guide to Heart, Lung, and Esophageal Surgery" from the Society of Thoracic Surgery.
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    A Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease), answered on behalf of
    How do tests screen for heart disease?
    There are tests that look at the major vascular areas of the heart. In this video, Michael Isaac, MD, Cardiologist at Medical City Dallas Hosptial explains which areas of the heart are being evaluated to determine risk of heart disease.
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    A , OBGYN (Obstetrics & Gynecology), answered
    Moore_WhatDoCRPTestLevelsIndicate_022014.mov
    There are specific guidelines for results of the C-reactive protein (CRP) test, which reflects inflammation related to heart disease risk. Watch women's health specialist Donnica Moore, MD, discuss what the test levels indicate with regard to risk.
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    A Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease), answered on behalf of
    Are the Risks of TAVR Higher for Elderly People?
    TAVR is an intensive procedure and may present greater risks to some patients compared to others. Learn more about the risk in elderly patients with Jeffrey Levisman, MD, in interventional cardiology at MountainView Hospital.
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    A , Family Medicine, answered
    There are many common risk factors for aortic dissection. One important risk factor is poorly controlled high blood pressure. Diabetes, smoking and elevated cholesterol also increase the risk for aortic dissection. Also, certain conditions such as Marfan syndrome and a bicuspid aortic valve increase the risk as well.
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    A Internal Medicine, answered on behalf of
    How can added sugar in my diet affect my heart?
    Eating a lot of sugar won't directly harm your heart, but it may help lead to conditions that raise your risk of a heart attack. Learn the sugar-heart attack link in this video with Alvin Haynes, MD, of Regional Medical Center of San Jose.
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    A Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease), answered on behalf of
    With risk factors of cardiovascular disease, such as diet, sedentary lifestyle, stress, body mass index (BMI), etc., there are many studies that conclude that the more healthy habits we developed earlier in life, the more likely we will be able to maintain these habits, and the more likely we will benefit with a longer, healthier life, free from disease. A recent study published in "Circulation" hits this point -- 55 year olds who had prolonged, moderately elevated non-high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol levels (≥ 160) when they were young adults were much more likely than their peers to have coronary heart disease by the time they were 70, in an analysis based on the Framingham Offspring Cohort. In essence, having decades of exposure to what many would consider mild to moderately elevated cholesterol levels is associated with a significantly elevated risk of cardiovascular disease. Some state that the way we think about smoking in terms of “pack-years,” we should be thinking about “lipid-years” of exposure to high cholesterol.

    Young adults need to remember that the foundation for cardiovascular disease is being laid in our 20s, 30s and 40s, and risk factor modification at that age may be really important.
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    The mitral valve is in the heart. It is the opening that allows blood to move from one part (chamber) of the heart to the next during the normal pumping process. Mitral valve disease is a problem with this valve. It can lead to poor blood flow between heart chambers. This can have effects on the rest of the body.
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