Strong Men Make Health a Priority

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Delaying a conversation about your blood pressure and cholesterol is easy. But facing the consequences − such as heart attack or stroke − isn’t. While Americans of all backgrounds can be at risk for heart disease, African American men, especially those who live in the southeast region of the United States, are at the highest risk for heart disease according to the CDC. Additionally, more than 40 percent of African Americans have high blood pressure, a leading cause of heart disease and stroke.

To help address the health disparity that exists in African American men and heart disease, the CDC has launched a Healthy is Strong initiative to encourage African-American men to have a conversation with their healthcare professional about heart disease. Beginning with a prompt to communicate early, often and honestly, the program provides the following tips to help you get the most out of a medical appointment:

  • GIVE INFORMATION – don’t wait to be asked. You are the owner of your health history. Tell your healthcare professional about your health, including a list of medications that you take.
  • GET INFORMATION – Ask questions of your healthcare professional when at the office, and ask for information to take home with you. Remember to write a list of your questions and use it to jog your memory during your visit. 
  • BE HONEST – Honesty is always the best policy. Communicate honestly with your healthcare provider in order to receive the best care possible.
  • FOLLOW-UP – After you leave the office, call if you have questions. Always remember to make a follow-up appointment if your healthcare professional recommends one.

If you’ve been diagnosed with risk factors for heart disease and stroke, such as high blood pressure or high cholesterol, consider asking your healthcare professional these questions during your next office visit.

ABOUT BLOOD PRESSURE
What Do I Need to Know? How Can I Protect My Future?
What is my blood pressure and what do the numbers mean? Why is managing my blood pressure important?
What should my blood pressure be? Is there a healthy eating or exercise plan that I should follow to help lower my blood pressure?
How often should my blood pressure be checked? What else can I do to help lower my blood pressure?
What may be causing my high blood pressure? Should I monitor my blood pressure at home?
What are the symptoms of high blood pressure? How do I discuss my condition with my family?
Why is smoking bad for my high blood pressure?
ABOUT CHOLESTEROL
What Do I Need to Know? How Can I Protect My Future?
What is my cholesterol and what do the numbers mean? Why is managing my cholesterol important?
Can you explain good cholesterol versus bad cholesterol? Is there a healthy eating or exercise plan that I should follow to help lower my cholesterol?
What may be causing my high cholesterol? What else can I do to help lower my cholesterol?
How often should my cholesterol be checked? How do I discuss my condition with my family?
What are the symptoms of high cholesterol?
How do diet and exercise impact my cholesterol?
How does smoking contribute to high cholesterol?
ABOUT MANAGING MEDICATIONS
What Do I Need to Know? How Can I Protect My Future?
What are my options to control high blood pressure, high cholesterol? Why is taking medication important?

 

Do I need to take medication? I take [insert name of medication]. Is it OK to take blood pressure or cholesterol medication as well?
How long should I stay on my medication? How long until I know if the medication is working and how long should I take it?
What are the possible side effects of taking medication? Are generic medications as good as brand name drugs? Is it safe to buy my medications through the mail?
Do I have to take my medication every day or is it OK to skip some days?

Finding a physician is easy….just call the Catawba Valley Medical Center Physician Referral Line at 828-326-2876. The attendant can help you find a family physician near your home or business and also help you with a referral to one of the many specialists affiliated with Catawba Valley Medical Center. Click here to find out more about the physicians associated with CVMC in the Catawba Valley Medical Group.

 

 

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