Community Health Network

Ranked among the nation's most integrated healthcare systems, Community Health Network is Central Indiana's leader in providing convenient access to exceptional healthcare services, where and when patients need them—in hospitals, health pavilions, workplaces, schools and homes.

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Heart facts you should know

Heart attack risk assessment

It's essential that you measure your risk of heart disease and make a plan for how to prevent it in the near future. Use these links from the American Heart Association to help you assess your risk of having a heart attack or dying from coronary heart disease in the next 10 years.

Warning signs of a heart attack

If you experience any of these warning signs, go immediately to the nearest emergency room.

  • Uncomfortable pressure, fullness, squeezing or pain in the center of the chest for more than two minutes.
  • Chest pain that spreads to the shoulders, neck, or arms.
  • Dizziness, fainting, sweating, nausea or shortness of breath may also occur.

Warning signs of a stroke

If you experience any of these warning signs, go immediately to the nearest emergency room.

  • Sudden numbness or weakness in the face, arm, or leg on one side of the body.
  • Loss of the ability to speak or difficulty speaking.
  • Unexplained dizziness, unsteadiness, or falling especially if associated with any of the above symptoms.

What to do if you experience chest pain and take nitroglycerine

Nitroglycerine is a prescription drug to be used as directed by your physician. This is only a guideline, not intended to replace your doctor's instructions. If you get chest pain, stop and rest. If the pain does not go away within a few minutes, sit or lie down and place one nitroglycerine tablet under your tongue and let it dissolve. After 3-5 minutes if the pain is not relieved take a second nitro tablet in the same manner. If your pain persists 3-5 minutes later you should be prepared to seek help and take a third nitroglycerine tablet. If you are still having pain call your doctor or go to the emergency room right away. Do not attempt to drive yourself.

Facts about high blood pressure

  • Your physician will check your blood pressure regularly. If you suspect you may have high blood pressure, schedule an appointment with your physician and discuss your concerns with him or her.
  • High blood pressure killed 37,520 Americans in 1993 and contributed to the deaths of thousands more through stroke, heart attack and heart failure.
  • About 50 million Americans age six and older have high blood pressure.
  • The cause of 90 to 95 percent of cases of high blood pressure is not known; however, high blood pressure can normally be detected and is usually controllable.
  • Among those people with high blood pressure, about 35% do not know they have it.
  • Men are at greater risk for high blood pressure than women until age 55. From age 55 to 74 the risks for men and women are about equal; after that, women are at greater risk than men.
  • Recent studies show that because of high blood pressure, death rates among African-Americans were higher than that of Anglo-Americans.
  • High blood pressure has been reported to be two to three times more common in women taking oral contraceptive pills for five years or longer than in women not taking oral contraceptives.
  • African-Americans, Puerto Ricans, Cubans and Mexican-Americans are more likely to suffer from high blood pressure than Anglo-Americans.
  • Recent surveys showed an estimated 2.2 million Americans age 15 and over had disabilities resulting from high blood pressure.
  • About 176,000 males and 208,000 females diagnosed with high blood pressure were discharged from hospitals in 1993.

More information

For more information on heart disease, please call Community Howard Regional Health's Cardiovascular Services at 765-453-8333.

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