Heart health system aims to combat major killer of Arkansans

LITTLE ROCK (KATV) -- Heart disease hits peopleeveryday around the nation and Arkansans know that all too well because our statehas the fifth-highest death rate from heart disease.

The Arkansas Heart Hospitalhas put together a list of tests that they believe will help show current orforecast future heart issues.

The list includes bloodand heart tests to evaluate the strength of a person's heart health.

"You know it doesn'treally matter what kind of shape you're in, you can still, something can bewrong, and you can save yourself an emergency situation," said Connie Plack ofBenton.

We watched as Plack went throughthe tests to get a more in-depth look at how her heart is functioning. She toldus she works out five days a week, but recent chest pains made her worry, soshe came in to see if it's a larger issue than expected.

"It does make meconcerned about genetics, and I think that's what I kind of think mine all boilsdown to is just genetics," she continued.

Keep the Beat is acardiac screening process that is made up of nine components, which cometogether to factor up a risk profile.

"It helps toidentify people who either really need to either adopt a lifestyle change ormedication change to minimize the degree or risk of having a fatal heartattack," said Dr. William A. Rollefson.

Dr. Rollefson, who is a interventionalcardiologist, said new technology can't completely take the possibility of aheart attack away, but early detection of heart disease can minimize thechances of it happening by as much as half.

"My colleagues fromcollege, med school, are all coming to see me wondering if they have heartdisease because dad had a heart attack. This is what we do to detect thecalcification of the arteries and assess their cardiac risk," Dr. Rollefsoncontinued.

This entire consultationcosts $99.95 and takes about an hour.

Men must be 40 years old,and women 45, with results coming at the end of the tests.

If you would like toschedule an appointment you can call the Arkansas Heart Hospital at (501)219-7283.

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