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Sudden cardiac arrest (SCA), a condition where the heart enters into a life-threatening rhythm, claims the lives of more than 350,000 Americans every year. The Snider Community Heart Watch is working to make Fairfield County a heart-safe community by increasing access to automated external defibrillators (AEDs), which are used to return the heart to a normal rhythm after SCA. When someone suffers from SCA, the chance of survival is less than 7 percent. However, with CPR and the use of an AED within three minutes of the heart stopping, the chance of survival is increased up to 70 percent.
“Many communities are not adequately prepared to respond to a cardiac arrest using an AED—our community is no exception,” said Dr. Douglas Pope, FMC hospitalist and president of the Medical Staff. “The primary barrier to having more AEDs has been price, as a few years ago they could cost several thousand dollars.” To help decrease the cost of AEDs, the Snider Community Heart Watch has started the Public Access AED Program, through which AEDs can be purchased at well below retail price. So far, more than 70 AED units have been placed in our community.
The Snider Community Heart Watch, a task force of FMC physicians, nurses, other employees and community members, wants AEDs available in the public places throughout the community. “Communities that have implemented a public access AED program with community-wide CPR training have been shown to raise survival rates to nearly 50 percent,” said Bob Williams, supervisor of the cardiac cath lab at FMC. “We would like to see AEDs located in as many public places as possible, including schools, athletic centers, shopping areas, businesses, places of worship and all law enforcement vehicles.”
For pricing or purchasing information, contact Jeff Solenbarger at (740) 687-8065.
For more information about the AEDs and education, contact Jennifer Dicken at (740) 687-8345.
Offered by the Snider Community Heart Watch, along with the Gordon B. Snider Cardiovascular Institute, Community CPR Day provides participants free cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) training. For individuals who suffer a cardiac arrest outside of the hospital, the chance of survival is less than 10 percent. Brain damage can occur in four minutes and for every minute you wait for treatment of cardiac arrest, the chance of survival goes down by 10 percent.
Starting CPR before emergency personnel arrives may increase the chance of survival. The community needs to be able to rely on each other to provide CPR in the event of an emergency. Participants in Community CPR Day will be certified in adult, child and infant CPR with the American Safety and Health Institute as community providers upon successful completion of practical skills and written exam. In addition to certification, a second type of CPR training will be offered that day known as HOPE (Hands On Practical Experience).
HOPE is a simplified form of CPR using only compressions and no breaths. The HOPE program was created in early 2012 for FMC’s Community CPR Day. To date, more than 3,500 people have been HOPE trained. The more people trained means odds of having someone near when a person suffers cardiac arrest.
In 2012, Fairfield Medical Center offered CPR training to participating schools in Fairfield County. Close to 2,000 students were trained in hands only CPR. Fairfield Medical Center is the first organization that has offered this training publicly with hopes that the training course will be modeled nationally.
The 2013 CPR Day will be held on Saturday, May 18 from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Fairfield Medical Center and Pickerington Central High School.
Registration for CPR Day is required. Simply fill out this CPR Day registration form and return it to the Fairfield Medical Center marketing department via fax, (740) 687-8795 or by mailing it to:
Fairfield Medical Center
Attn: Marketing Dept.
401 North Ewing Street
Lancaster, Ohio 43130
Please call, (740) 689-6893 with questions.
Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women in the U.S. While there are a few factors that increase the risk for heart disease that are out of your control, there are many things that contribute to heart disease that can be controlled to maintain a healthy heart.
Genetics or Family History - If you have a family member who had heart disease at an early age (before the age of 60), your risk for heart disease increases. If you have a family history, you need to pay special attention to your blood pressure, body weight and cholesterol levels.
Age - The risk for heart disease increases for men after the age of 45 and for women after the age of 55. If you are above these ages, ask your doctor about taking a low-dose aspirin (81 mg) every day to help prevent a heart attack.
Gender - Men have a greater risk factor of a heart attack than woman do and they have them earlier in life.
Smoking or Tobacco Use - The chemicals in tobacco make the heart work harder. Smoking and using tobacco also damages the arteries in your heart and the rest of your body. Fatty deposits stick to these damaged arteries and cause blockages. Smoking and using tobacco is the worst thing that you can do for your heart. Find a way to quit. Call (740) 687-8261 for help.
High Blood Pressure - When your blood pressure is high, there is extra pressure on your artery walls damaging the lining of the arteries. You can control blood pressure by taking your prescribed medicine, eating less salt or sodium, exercising regularly and learning to manage stress. A normal blood pressure reading is less than or equal to 120/70. If your blood pressure is above 130/80, ask your doctor about medicine and/or exercise to lower your blood pressure.
Being Overweight - Being overweight makes your heart work harder. People who are overweight are more likely to have high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes. Measure your waistline. Men with a waistline of more than 40 inches, and women with a waistline of more than 35 inches, are risk for heart disease. For more information on healthy weight loss, call (740) 687-8078.
Diabetes or High Blood Sugar - When your blood sugar is too high, it damages the arteries and increases your chances of having heart disease and heart attack. Diabetes is diagnosed when your fasting blood sugar is greater than 100 mg/dL. If you have high blood sugar or diabetes, be sure to follow a diabetic diet, exercise regularly, keep a healthy body weight and take your medicine. For more information on diabetes, call (740) 687-8492.
High Cholesterol - Cholesterol is a fat that travels through the body in the blood. If there is too much cholesterol in the blood, the extra amount builds up in the arteries. To lower your cholesterol, eat less saturated fat and hydrogenated oils (trans fat).
These are “bad fats” and cause your LDL level to be high. Avoid fried and fatty foods such as French fries, packaged cookies and fatty meats. Triglycerides are also bad. This level is increased by sugary foods and alcohol. Diabetics tend to have higher triglycerides.
There are “good fats” called HDL that help protect your heart and body from the build up of plaque. Eat foods that are high in healthy good fats such as almonds, walnuts and baked fish. Look for food labeled “high in omega-3 fatty acids". Eat foods that are high in fiber such as whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables.
Recommended cholesterol labs are as follows:
Total Cholesterol - Less than 200 mg/dL
LDL - Less than 100 mg/dL
HDL - Greater than 40 mg/dL for men; greater than 50mg/dL for women (The higher the better!)
HDL - Greater than 70 mg/dL if have known heart disease
Triglycerides - Less than 150 mg/dL
Your doctor may prescribe medicine to help control cholesterol.
A Sedentary Lifestyle - Lack of regular exercise can cause heart disease. Exercise strengthens the heart, keeps the arteries healthy, lowers blood pressure, relieves stress, lowers cholesterol and helps diabetics control blood sugar. Experts recommend exercising for at least 30 minutes four to six times a week. The best exercise for the heart is aerobic exercise such brisk walking, biking or running. If you have a history of heart disease, heart attack, angioplasty, a stent and/or bypass surgery, ask your doctor about cardiac rehabilitation. You may call (740) 687-8174 for more information or to inquire about our Healthy Living Program.
Stress - When you are under stress, your body makes chemicals that can cause heart disease. Too much stress can raise blood pressure and blood sugar. There are healthy ways to manage stress such as exercise, meditation and relaxation. Consider taking a stress management class. Ask your doctor for more information.
Alcohol - Drinking alcohol in excess increases the risk of high blood pressure, obesity and stroke. Too much alcohol can raise fat levels in the blood (triglycerides).
For more information, call (740) 687-8261.
Recognizing early symptoms can help prevent a heart attack. Heart attack symptoms may occur hours or even weeks before the actual heart attack.
Early Symptoms of a heart attack include:
• Chest pain, pressure, squeezing or discomfort
• Jaw pain
• Pain that travels down one or both arms
• Feeling of fullness
• Shortness of breath
• Back pain
• Feeling of impending doom
• Upper abdominal pressure or discomfort
• Light headaches, fainting, sweating, nausea or shortness of breath without chest discomfort
Early heart attack care (EHAC) is a campaign intended to educate everyone about the early symptoms of a heart attack in order to prevent the heart attack from ever occurring. Preventing the heart attack prevents heart damage. EHAC is also a plea to the public to be responsible, not only for themselves, but for those around who may be experiencing early heart attack symptoms and to help them obtain immediate treatment. This is a public education program that concentrates on the benefits of receiving early treatment and activating emergency medical services.
EHAC is important in saving your heart. If you or someone you know is experiencing these symptoms, take an aspirin and call 911.
A healthy person has open and smooth arteries that allow blood to flow to all areas of the body especially the heart. Heart disease is when one or more of these arteries are damaged or blocked. This causes a decrease in blood flowing to the heart.
Blockages in your arteries are often made of fatty deposits called plaque. These blocked arteries can oftentimes be treated. If the blockage is severe, you may need coronary artery bypass surgery.
When the heart is not getting a good blood supply, you may feel symptoms such as chest pressure and/or shortness of breath. It is very important that you report your symptoms to your doctor right away or call 911.