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Heart Health

4 healthy habits to help you thrive with atrial fibrillation (AFib)

As an electrophysiologist, I see people with heart rhythm problems or irregular heartbeats, also known as arrhythmias. The most common type of arrhythmia I treat is atrial fibrillation, also referred to AFib. If you’ve been diagnosed with AFib, first, know that you are not alone. AFib affects millions of Americans. Most people with AFib have …

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What to know about COVID-19 and your risk of myocarditis

The thought of having COVID-19 strikes fear into the hearts of many—understandably so, given the deaths and long-term health problems that it has caused for some. But COVID-19 may inflict more than just fear upon hearts. It may also cause heart problems, specifically something called myocarditis, which has gotten a considerable amount of attention in …

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Stroke prevention: Why medications and lifestyle both matter

The most common conditions that contribute to stroke risk are high blood pressure, high cholesterol and Type 2 diabetes—the same culprits that can raise your risk of heart disease. So, it makes sense that managing these chronic conditions is key to stroke prevention. But because these diseases are often “silent,” not everyone is motivated to …

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Family history of stroke? Here’s how to lower your risk

Your brown eyes, your curly hair, your love of a good story. You get a lot from your family. But unfortunately, many people also get a higher risk of stroke. Family history of stroke—meaning that you have a first-degree relative who has experienced either an ischemic (clotting) or hemorrhagic (bleeding) stroke or an aneurysm—can increase …

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What it means to be a Comprehensive Stroke Center (and why it matters)

Most people know that if they’re experiencing stroke symptoms, time matters. But not everyone knows that where you go matters, too. There are four levels of care for stroke centers. Let’s talk about the kind of care provided at each in the event of a stroke emergency. What is a Comprehensive Stroke Center? According to …

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Heart disease runs in my family. What does that mean for me?

Recently, a man visited his doctor with complaints of chest pain and shortness of breath. “Does heart disease run in your family?” his doctor asked. “Doc,” the man replied, “No one runs in my family!” We may have a good chuckle about that one. But it’s true that a common question your doctors will ask …

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Role reversal: Chief Nursing Officer thankful for second chance at life after sudden stroke

As Chief Nursing Officer for Baylor Scott & White – College Station Region, Amber Reed, MBA, BSN, RN, OCN, NEA-BC, isn’t used to being the one whose life is on the line. She shares her story now as both a word of caution for others to take care themselves and as a token of gratitude …

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How to reduce your risk of having a second stroke

In addition to potentially leaving you with long-term neurological deficits, having a stroke also increases the risk of having another one—significantly. One in four people who have a stroke experience a second stroke, according to the American Stroke Association. To avoid that second stroke and protect brain cells, stroke prevention is key. But to prevent …

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How controlling AFib can help you prevent a stroke

It accounts for more than a quarter of all ischemic, or clot-related strokes. It increases your risk of having such a stroke fivefold. And, maybe most shockingly, for many people, having a stroke is the first time they learn they may be experiencing it. It’s a cardiac condition called atrial fibrillation, commonly referred to as …

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3 subtle stroke symptoms you should never ignore

BE FAST is more than just an acronym to help you identify symptoms of stroke—it’s also a major clue to the type of symptoms you should never ignore. The mnemonic BE FAST stands for Balance, Eyes, Face, Arms, Speech, Time. Although there are some common stroke symptoms that could have other causes, it’s the sudden …

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