The Cardiovascular Health (CVH) Program's mission is to provide leadership in the state of Alabama to prevent death and disability from heart disease and stroke, eliminate disparities in health and health care, and work with its many partners to fully implement a plan focusing on policy and system changes in the worksite, healthcare, and community settings.
Blood Clot Awareness Month
March is Blood Clot Awareness Month! A blood clot can do deadly damage if it flows into a vital organ. That's why it is important to recognize the warning signs and get medical help right away. Warning signs of a clot in a leg include: swelling, pain or tenderness from an unknown cause, skin that's warm to the touch, and redness or red streaking. Warning signs of a clot in a lung include: unexplained shortness of breath, chest pain that gets worse with a deep breath, fast hear rate, and lightheadedness or fainting. Visit heart.org/vte for more information.
Blood Pressure Treatment Algorithm
A new resource for physicians is now available through a joint effort of the American Heart Association (AHA) and the American Medical Association (AMA) to help treat patients with high blood pressure under the new blood pressure guidelines mentioned below.
Blood Pressure Self-Monitoring
The CVH Program has teamed up with the Montgomery YMCA to offer blood pressure self-monitoring. Here is a flyer and a handout about the program. For information on how to take your blood pressure, please view this infographic.
New AHA Blood Pressure Guidelines
The AHA recently released new blood pressure guidelines that redefine high blood pressure. Here are some AHA resources to help you keep track of your blood pressure under these new guidelines.
- 2017 Guideline for the Prevention, Detection, Evaluation and Management of High Blood Pressure in Adults
- Blood Pressure Log
- What Can I Do To Improve My Blood Pressure?
- Check. Change. Control.
- Blood Pressure Measurement Instructions
Presentation on New Blood Pressure Guidelines
Dr. Suzanne Oparil, MD, FACC, FAHA, FASH, FAPS, gave a presentation on the new blood pressure guidelines at a recent meeting of the Alabama Cardiovascular Health Network.
Diabetes, Cardiovascular, and Obesity Conference Presentations
The following are presentations that were given during the recent Diabetes, Cardiovascular, and Obesity Conference:
- The Church As A Health Place
- Collaborating To Improve Health
- Partners In Prevention
- Diabetes Prevention: Reaching The Entire Village
- DSME and You: Partners in the Community
- Phytochemicals & Heart Healthy Eating
- Mediterranean Diet - Protection Against Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus
- Foods to Reduce Heart Disease
- Providence Hospital Diabetes Prevention Program
Know Your Numbers
Untreated hypertension can cause serious health consequences or death. Prevention is key. Learn more about high blood pressure, the "silent killer."
Diabetes and Heart Disease
People with diabetes face a greater chance of having heart problems such as a heart attack or stroke. But those with diabetes can take steps at reducing their chances of getting heart disease. Here are some resources produced by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):
- Taking Care of Your Diabetes Means Taking Care of Your Heart
- Healthy Eating and Cooking
- Being Physically Active
- Smoking and Diabetes
- Diabetes and You: All Medicines Matter
- Coping with Emotional Issues
- Heart Attack Signs and Symptoms
- Stroke Signs and Symptoms
Protect Your Heart
Heart disease is the leading cause of death for men and women in the United States, but it can often be prevented by identifying risk factors and making healthy lifestyle choices. Help your Medicare patients reduce their risk for heart disease and stroke:
- How to Help Prevent Heart Disease - At Any Age
- Recommend appropriate preventive services, including cardiovascular disease screening tests and intensive behavioral therapy for cardiovascular disease
- Get tools and resources through HHS Million Hearts®, a national initiative to prevent a million heart attacks and strokes by 2017
Visit the Preventive Services website to learn more about Medicare-covered services.
High Blood Pressure: Make Control Your Goal
Million Hearts has made available some useful resources for both patients and providers about maintaining high blood pressure. A two-page handout entitled "High Blood Pressure: How to Make Control Your Goal" is geared towards patients and provides a general outline of how to manage the condition. Million Hearts also compiled a toolkit for practitioners, patients, and their families about maintaining healthy blood pressure levels.
2016 Blood Pressure Control for Better Health
About 70 million American adults have high blood pressure - that's 1 out of every 3 adults per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Only about half (52%) of those with high blood pressure have their condition under control. Nearly 1 out of 3 American adults have blood pressure numbers that are higher than normal, but not yet in the high blood pressure range. High blood pressure costs the nation $46 billion each year which includes the cost of health care services, medications to treat high blood pressure and missed days of work. ADPH created the 2016 Blood Pressure Control for Better Health program to provide practical steps for blood pressure control. The two-hour program is specifically designed for nurses, social workers, clinicians, public health and pharmacists.
CDC, Million Hearts Release Resources for Heart Disease Prevention
The CDC has released resources concerning healthy living habits for heart disease prevention. By living a healthy lifestyle, you can help keep your blood pressure normal and lower your risk for heart disease and heart attack. The Million Hearts program has also made available information concerning prevention of heart disease and stroke. Review these resources today and learn more about how you can protect your heart!
High blood pressure and hypertension affects thousands of Alabamians. Here are some resources to help you reach those patients who suffer from these conditions.
- Hypertension Control Change Package for Clinicians
- Self-Measured Blood Pressure Monitoring Action Steps for Clinicians
- Hypertension in Alabama, 2011-2013
- Cardiac rehabilitation program referral
- "Life After a Heart Attack" patient discharge worksheet
Blood Pressure Task Force
Visit the Blood Pressure Task Force for information developed to assist clinicians in the identification, treatment, and management of hypertension utilizing scientific evidence-based approaches.
High blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, and smoking continue to put more people at risk for heart disease and stroke. To address these risk factors, CVH is focusing on the ABCS of cardiovascular disease prevention.
A = Aspirin Use
Ask your provider about taking:
- One baby aspirin (81 mg) everyday, or
- One regular aspirin (325 mg) every other day.
B = Blood Pressure
- Normal blood pressure should be at or below 120/80.
- Reduce your sodium consumption.
C = Cholesterol
Ask your provider about how often to check your cholesterol.
- Normal total cholesterol levels should be below 200.
- LDL (bad cholesterol) should be below 100.
S = Smoking Cessation
Research shows using a quitline with medication increases abstinence rates. Ask your provider about quitting, or call 1-800-QUIT-NOW or visit the Alabama Quitline for more details.
Stroke is an emergency. If you are among the millions of Americans who are not yet familiar with the symptoms of stroke, here is a quick and easy way to remember how to recognize a stroke when it happens to someone you know. Remember the word FAST.
F = Facial Weakness
Can the person smile? Have their mouths or eyes drooped?
A = Arm Weakness
Can the person raise both arms? Is one arm slightly lower?
S = Speech/Sight Difficulty
Can the person speak or see clearly and understand what you say?
T = Time to Act
Time loss is brain lost. Call 9-1-1.
Visit About Us for more information relating to the Cardiovascular Health Program.
Page last updated: March 14, 2018