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First 2014 Health Talk Lecture at MBSH: “Silent Killers”

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

First 2014 Health Talk Lecture at MBSH: “Silent Killers”

Missouri Baptist Sullivan Hospital’s first “Let’s Talk Health Over Lunch” for the year took place on Tuesday, February 11.  With February being American Heart Month, the most appropriate topic to discuss was “Silent Killers” presented by Dr. Musa Modad, Internal Medicine physician and Mike Whitaker, Cardiac Rehab Manager.

Heart disease is a major problem with about 715,000 Americans having a heart attack each year.  About 600,000 people die from heart disease in the United States each year, which is about 1 of every 4 deaths.  Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women.

Mr. Whitaker began the program explaining the anatomy and function of the heart.  He shared what a heart attack is, causes of one and damage resulting from one.  Causes include atherosclerosis (fatty buildup) in the coronary arteries, blood clots and spasms.  When blockage occurs in the arteries, not enough blood or oxygen reaches the heart muscle causing heart muscle to die.  A symptom of heart disease includes Angina.  Angina can be tightness, squeezing or aching in the chest, pain or discomfort in the neck, jaw upper back or arms, indigestion, shortness of breath or dizziness.  One main point Mike expressed was to never ignore chest pain.  Keep a record of the angina and inform your doctor.

Dr. Modad expanded on the topic of “Silent Killers” by going over risk factors for heart disease.  Specific risk factors he talked about included: heredity, age, race, smoking, high blood pressure, high cholesterol & triglyceride levels, obesity, stress, lack of exercise, diabetes and gender.  Some on the list like heredity, age and race, are not controllable where others like smoking, high blood pressure & cholesterol, obesity and exercise, can be helped by life-style changes.  If possible, implementing a better diet and increasing one’s exercise is a preference over medication.  Physicians work to improve the quality of life of their patients by monitoring the results of various medical tests available.  With this information, the doctor can give sound advise to their patients in order to reduce the risk factors and problem causing behaviors. 

At the conclusion of the presentation, Dr. Modad and Mike Whitaker fielded many questions asked by those attending.  Everyone was encouraged to take charge of their own health by choosing a healthy life-style and take advantage of the many health screens available today to make wise health choices.