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U.S. Preventive Medicine Experts Available to Discuss Role of Prevention in Avoiding Heart Attacks
Date:6/14/2008

DALLAS, June 14 /PRNewswire/ -- Most deaths caused by heart attacks can be avoided by making prevention a number one goal, according to medical experts at U.S. Preventive Medicine, the leader in disease prevention.

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"It's always shocking to hear when someone dies of a heart attack, whether that person is a high profile celebrity, a family member or the neighbor down the street. But it's a death that shouldn't happen in the first place," says Dr. Sami Beg, Associate Medical Director at U.S. Preventive Medicine.

Heart attacks occur when the blood supply to a part of the heart is disrupted, according to Dr. Beg. A decrease in oxygen damages the heart tissue and sometimes kills it. More common in old age, others can also be impacted especially if they have a family history of heart problems or a personal history of prior heart disease or stroke. Other factors such as smoking, being overweight or obese, having high cholesterol, high blood pressure or diabetes, all increase the risk of a heart attack.

"One out of every five deaths in the United States occurs because of heart attacks and many individuals who are stricken with heart attacks often seem healthy," says Dr. Beg. "That's why it is critically important that no matter how we look or feel, we invest the time and effort into preventive measures. Furthermore, we need to take care of all the other risk factors which may be causing medical problems on the inside which we may not be aware of."

For example, smokers are two to four times more likely to develop heart disease than non-smokers. Similarly, those who are overweight or obese have a higher risk, according to Dr. Beg.

"Hearing or reading about a heart attack should not scare people but make them think about implementing strategies now so they can prevent complications later on," says Dr. Beg. "Stopping smoking and maintaining healthy weight levels are the best way to prevent a heart attack. Also, by exercising regularly and eating a healthy diet, we can lower high cholesterol and high blood pressure, prevent and control diabetes, and over the long run greatly reduce our chances of having a heart attack. It isn't rocket science but just a matter of getting into the right routine,"

"If someone smokes or has some extra pounds, the sudden and unfortunate death of someone caused by a heart attack should serve as a wake-up call," says Dr. Beg.

Dr. Beg also recommends that everyone learn to recognize the signs of a heart attack. Pain or discomfort in the chest, jaw, neck, back, shoulder or the arms is a warning sign. Other signs include feeling weak or light-headed and having shortness of breath. According to experts, about half of deaths from heart attack occur before the emergency services arrive or the patient reaches a hospital.

About U.S. Preventive Medicine

U.S. Preventive Medicine(R), a privately owned company, with offices in Dallas, TX, Jacksonville, FL and New York, NY, is building the first personalized medicine business in the United States and internationally focused on prevention. The company offers employers, government agencies and consumers proprietary products that include The Prevention Plan(TM), a groundbreaking personalized health management program delivered online to individuals; The Prevention Plan CM(TM), field-based chronic disease management programs customized for employers and government agencies to reduce healthcare costs; and The Center for Preventive Medicine(R), which offers high-tech diagnostic screenings delivered to consumers in partnership with hospitals, health systems and other providers. For more information, please visit http://www.USPreventiveMedicine.com.


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SOURCE U.S. Preventive Medicine
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