avoid

Can I prevent a heart attack?



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I'm David Rutland I'm a cardiologist I'm

the director of the division of

cardiovascular medicine at UAMS now in

terms of what to do about preventing a

heart attack is we think very very hard

in terms of what risk factors a patient

may have or a potential cardiac patient

may have and we know that the older you

get the more likely you are to develop

coronary disease both men and women can

develop coronary disease and they

develop it in about the same number in

in equal numbers it's just that women

live longer than men and they develop

coronary disease usually about a decade

after men develop coronary disease so an

older person is more likely to have

coronary disease more likely to have a

myocardial infarct a heart attack and a

man is more likely to have a heart

attack than a woman for the same age but

women catch up it's just that they're 10

years behind the other thing that's

important is family history and it's

really a first Andrew degree relative so

if someone's mom or dad or their brother

or sister her child had a heart attack

or developed angina in an early age that

makes the patient more susceptible to

develop coronary artery disease now it's

got to be premature coronary disease in

a first-degree relative so that would be

a male before the age of 55 or a female

before the age of 65 in all honesty if

your grandfather or a cousin or

or an uncle had premature coronary

disease that doesn't place you at that

much of a risk it really has to be a

first-degree relative

well you can't do anything about your

age you can't do anything about your

gender you can't do anything about your

family history but there are risk

factors that you can do a lot about

first of all if you're smoking you got

to stop smoking if you're chewing

tobacco you got to stop chewing tobacco

high blood pressure is another we know

the higher the blood pressure is the

longer the blood pressure is elevated

the greater the risk there is for

coronary artery disease in addition to

high blood pressure being a risk factor

for coronary disease an elevated

cholesterol level also can be a risk

factor and that's very very important to

get that under control we know that

having diabetes is a risk factor for

developing coronary artery disease and

it's very very important to get your

diabetes under control now in general

exercise probably is beneficial the data

may not be quite as strong but there's

some data to suggest that the more

exercise someone is engaging in they are

less likely to have a cardiac event we

know now people that have a normal

weight probably have an enhanced life

span probably fewer cardiac events all

of the data is a little a little softer

with that but clearly the right body

weight is going to be very helpful in

terms of both for cholesterol level and

the blood pressure in the cardiovascular

area at UAMS we can take care of

everything