Non-Invasive AngioScreen Assesses Risk for Heart Disease, Stroke
HILLSDALE, Mich.—Hillsdale Hospital is now offering AngioScreen, a non-invasive vascular screening to provide patients with information about their circulation, risk of heart disease and risk of stroke. The screening includes seven tests that can identify potential areas of concern that a patient should discuss with their doctor: abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) scan, carotid artery ultrasound for peak systolic velocity, the ankle-brachial index for blockages in leg arteries, blood pressure, heart rate, heart rhythm and body mass index (BMI).
“This service can be a life line for patients who have no symptoms, but discover they have an issue that could go unnoticed until a serious health event like heart attack or stroke occurs,” Chief Communications Officer Rachel Lott said. “These tests are not routinely ordered by physicians unless symptoms are present, so AngioScreen allows patients to be proactive.”
An abdominal aortic aneurysm is an expansion of the abdominal aorta, the main blood vessel that carries blood from the heart to the rest of the body. As the aneurysm expands, the wall may rupture, often resulting in sudden death. The majority of people with AAAs have no symptoms, so early screening through ultrasound can be life-saving.
A carotid artery ultrasound shows blood flow in the neck arteries that go to the front of brain, measured as peak systolic velocity. Narrowing of these arteries by the buildup of cholesterol called plaque increases the risk of stroke.
The ankle-brachial index test identifies blockages in the arteries that go to the legs. Such blockage is called Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD). A person with PAD is two to four times more likely to have a heart attack compared to the general population. More than ten million Americans have PAD, but 90 percent do not know they have it.
The screening also tests for a rapid and irregular heartbeat known as atrial fibrillation (AFib), which can cause a stroke. More than ten million Americans have AFib. Medication can lower the stroke risk of AFib by more than 75 percent. Blood pressure, heart rate and BMI measures are also included in an AngioScreen.
“According to the American Heart Association, nearly 2,400 Americans die of cardiovascular disease each day, an average of one death every 36 seconds,” Lott said. “More than 400 Americans die of stroke each day, an average of one death every 3.5 minutes. AngioScreen helps to decrease that number through prevention, arming patients with information to share with their doctor and act upon.”
Immediately following the AngioScreen, individuals will receive a consultation with educational materials, in addition to a color ultrasound picture printout showing an image of their carotid arteries. Appointments are available on Thursdays from 12:30-4:30 pm at Hillsdale Hospital. Patients can book an AngioScreen online at hillsdalehospital.com/angio or call (517) 639-7300. The screenings are $75 and are not billed to insurance. AngioScreen is, however, a qualified preventive care expense for Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) or Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs). Patients can pay online when scheduling or at their appointment. For more information, call (517) 639-7300 or visit hillsdalehospital.com/angio.