Live a longer, heart-healthy life
As Men’s Health Week draws to a close, Cabrini interventional cardiologist Dr David McGaw says that management of good heart health starts much earlier than you might think.
“Heart disease begins as a silent process,” he says.
“All men over 20 years should be assessed for cardiac risk at least every five years. This would usually begin with their general practitioner to review their risk factors and importantly check their cholesterol.”
Dr McGaw says risk factors include high blood pressure, diabetes, smoking, a family history, obesity and high cholesterol.
Men with high risk of developing heart disease will benefit from early intervention of their risk factors, which will reduce cardiac events, and therefore maintain their quality of life and prolong life expectancy.
Symptoms of trouble from blocked heart arteries include angina pain that is often in the chest, but may just be in the arms, shoulders, throat, jaw or back. It is typically worse with exertion and settles with rest.
Men who have developed such symptoms should seek attention urgently as they may herald a heart attack. New symptoms or symptoms that are becoming more severe or occurring at rest are particularly concerning. If there is a delay to seeing their GP then patients should present to the Emergency Department of a Hospital for further assessment.
“Men are at risk of ignoring the early warnings that they experience,” Dr McGaw says.
“Don’t make that mistake!”
Dr David McGaw is an interventional cardiologist specialising in ischaemic heart disease, with expertise in structural heart disease interventions.
To learn more about the broad range of Cabrini Cardiac services visit www.cabrini.com.au/cardiac