By Forrest Hershberger
Sidney Sun-Telegraph 

Wear Red Friday Recognizes Heart Health Issues


February 7, 2018

Visitors to Sidney Regional Medical Center Friday saw red – a bright reminder of the dangers of cardiovascular disease. Throughout the building, SRMC staff members wore red shirts, many with printed hearts on them.

The American Heart Association (AHA) lists cardiovascular disease as the leading cause of death in the world. In the U.S., heart disease is the leading cause of death with stroke as the fifth leading cause of death.

The term "heart disease" refers to several types of heart conditions. The most common type in the United States is coronary heart disease (also called coronary artery disease), which occurs when plaque builds up in the arteries that supply blood to the heart. Coronary heart disease can cause heart attack, angina, heart failure, and arrhythmias.

The AHA says one million people who will have a heart attack or die from coronary heart disease this year. The same report shows there are 16.5 million Americans age 20 and older who are living with coronary heart disease. There are an estimated 356,000 cardiac arrests that occur outside a hospital each year. There is a reported 38 percent increase in the number of high blood pressure deaths between 2005 and 2015.

"With the aging of the population and increased life expectancy, the prevalence of high blood pressure is expected to continue to increase," says epidemiologist Dr. Paul Muntner on the AHA website.

Dr. Muntner is co-chair of the group that wrote the AHA's Heart Disease and Stroke Statistics - 2018 update.

The death rate from high blood pressure increased by almost 11 percent from 2005 to 2015. The actual number of deaths rose by almost 38 percent - nearly 79,000 - in the 10-year period. Guidelines published in November redefined high blood pressure, also known as hypertension, as a reading of 130 on top and 80 on the bottom. The standard was changed from 140 over 90. The percentage of U.S. adults with high blood pressure jumped from 32 percent under the previous definition to almost 46 percent in the updated definition.

At Sidney Regional Medical Center, patients who are treated for cardiac issues are typically prescribed cardiac rehabilitation. Cardiac rehab is ordered for a patient after they have a qualifying event such as a heart attack, stent placement, bypass surgery or valve replacement, according to Kelly Price, RN BS, cardiac rehab and cardiology specialty clinic at SRMC.

Price has been in critical care /cardiac nursing for 35 years.

 In the program, patients exercise three days a week while wearing a cardiac monitor. They utilize different equipment ( i.e. treadmill, stationary bike, Nustep, eliptical and upper body ergometer) based on their ability and level of fitness.

 "We provide individualized education on nutrition, medications, and life style changes. We are able to report any significant changes in blood pressure, heart rhythm or symptoms to their cardiologist and assist patients as directed by their provider," Price said.

 Patients typically come to cardiac rehab for 18-36 sessions based on the individual's insurance benefits. 

 Prices says Cardiac Rehab is a very rewarding area of nursing. Patients develop good exercise habits and take personal ownership about making positive choices. Most importantly they build the confidence to exercise independently because they "know what their heart does during exercise."

 SRMC has a Nationally certified Cardiac rehab program.


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