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Heart Health

Understanding your heart valve disease diagnosis

Your heart’s ability to pump oxygen-rich blood throughout the body depends on a number of complex functions. The heart’s four valves allow blood to flow through your heart in the right direction. When they don’t open or close properly, the flow of blood throughout your body is disrupted. Heart valve disease is diagnosed when one or more …

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So, you were diagnosed with a heart condition. Now what?

If you’ve received a diagnosis related to the heart or blood vessels, it’s normal to be frightened and a little confused. The information out there on heart conditions can be overwhelming. “Heart disease can be confusing at first,” said Michael Mack, MD, heart surgeon and the chair of Baylor Scott & White Health’s cardiovascular governing …

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How to know when it’s time to see a cardiologist

There are many people whose first trip to see a cardiologist is taken in the back of an ambulance. That is unfortunate because today, cardiologists can help those at risk prevent serious heart and vascular events—like heart attack, stroke or even heart failure—hopefully keeping you from ever having to take that ride. While it is …

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7 simple healthy habits to lower your blood pressure

Did you know that nearly half of all adults in the US have high blood pressure? As a practicing interventional cardiologist, I see patients with high blood pressure, or hypertension, every day and can verify this statistic. The good news I give to those who do have high blood pressure is this—they have the ability …

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Which AFib treatment is right for you?

A diagnosis of atrial fibrillation (AFib) can be scary. But it’s a condition that affects millions of Americans and—thanks to advances in the field of electrophysiology—is manageable in the vast majority of cases. In fact, the question typically now is no longer, ‘can anything be done to manage it?’ But rather, ‘what is the best …

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What to expect during a cardiac ablation procedure

Cardiac ablation is a preferred treatment option for many arrhythmias—or abnormal heart rhythms—and is particularly effective for the most common type of arrhythmia, atrial fibrillation (AFib). According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 12 million people in the US are projected to be living with AFib by 2030. What is a …

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How doctors test for and diagnose heart disease

Heart disease is the #1 cause of death in both men and women in the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, every 36 seconds, an American dies from cardiovascular disease. But there’s good news—lifestyle modifications, like diet and exercise, can make a world of a difference in reducing your risk for …

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From heart attack to half-marathon in only six months

At 53, Thom Harris didn’t see it coming. Not the heart attack. And not the half-marathon that would follow only six months later. On May 1, Thom, in good physical shape and healthy according to his bloodwork, was cleaning his boat when he felt a pain between his shoulder blades. He popped an aspirin and …

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5 foods that are good for your heart health

If you’ve resolved to eat healthier and take better care of your heart, this is for you. Many of my clients know they need to improve their diet, but most have difficulty deciding where or how to get started. For instance, it’s no mystery that fruits and vegetables are good for us. However, choosing which …

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