Making sure you’re on the right track to maintaining a healthy heart is as simple as knowing five little numbers: blood pressure, blood sugar, body mass index, cholesterol and waist size. By regularly monitoring these five things, you can quickly see when something is abnormal so you can follow up with your doctor.
High blood pressure can lead to a host of health problems—most notably cardiovascular disease. By getting your blood pressure taken every few months, you’ll have a better idea of your baseline blood pressure in case you have a spike.
Having your blood sugar measured after an 8-hour fasting period is a great indicator of your risk for diabetes. If you already have diabetes, measuring your blood sugar periodically will help you know how well your treatment plan is working.
Body Mass Index (BMI)
This is an easy number you can find out by yourself at home. To determine your BMI, divide your weight in pounds by your height in inches squared. Then multiply by 703.
Getting your cholesterol checked is important in determining your risk factors for cardiovascular disease. Share your results with your healthcare provider so he or she can help get your cholesterol back on track if it’s high, or keep an eye on it if it’s higher than normal.
This may be a number you’re all too aware of if you’ve tried to squeeze into an old pair of jeans. A large waist circumference or excess abdominal fat is associated with higher risks of cardiovascular disease and diabetes.
Heart disease is the leading cause of death in men and women, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Knowing your risk of heart disease and heart attacks, and taking action now, can help ensure you live a longer, healthier life. Riverview Health Heart & Vascular offers preventative screenings that you can schedule or prequalify for without a doctor’s order. Take care of your heart through one of the following tests and be sure to share your results with your physician.
This screening is performed using a CT scanner to determine the amount of hardened plaque inside your coronary arteries. Plaque build-up inside your coronary arteries can lead to a heart attack if the flow of oxygen-rich blood to your heart is reduced or blocked.
To pre-qualify and schedule a heart scan, call 317.776.7247, and dial option 1. Payment is due at time of scheduling.
With a baseline EKG screening, the electrical activity of your heart is recorded on paper and read by your healthcare team. The pattern of your heart signals can tell your doctor whether your heart is normal, under stress, or experiencing strain or damage. At Riverview Health, a computerized system stores your baseline EKG keeping it readily available for your healthcare team.
No appointment is necessary for this test. Simply make your purchase from our selection of Direct Access Laboratory tests and take your receipt to Riverview Health Outpatient Laboratory located at Riverview Health. Park and enter through the Emergency Center (entrance #1).
• Carotid Artery Screening—This test screens for possible narrowing and blockages of the carotid arteries, which are the main arteries in the neck that supply blood to the brain. If these arteries are blocked, you could be at a higher risk of stroke.
• Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Screening—This non-invasive ultrasound test screens for an aneurysm—a bulge or weakness—in the aorta, the major blood vessel that extends from the heart into the abdomen.
• Ankle Brachial Index Test—This procedure tests for peripheral artery disease by screening for blockages and plaque buildup in the legs, which is linked to cardiovascular disease. Deposits of plaque in the large arteries of the legs can block the blood supply to the legs, resulting in pain when walking.
To pre-qualify and schedule a Vascular Screening Package, call 317.776.7247, and dial option 1. Patients must be at least 30 years old. Payment is due at time of scheduling.
To qualify for this test, you must have a history of smoking, be at least 50 years old, and complete a screening questionnaire to determine your risk factors. If you’re eligible for this screening, you must provide your primary care physician’s name and contact information so he or she may receive the results. This screening uses a CT scan to identify early signs of lung cancer. The exam takes only a few minutes and doesn’t require any medications or needles. Board certified radiologists provide results of the exam to your physician.
To see if you qualify for the exam, call 317.770.2626.