Your Heart Matters
Heart disease is the number one cause of death in the United States. But 80% is preventable. Read on to learn more about how MDVIP and your doctor work to help prevent and manage heart disease.
Heart disease is serious business. It kills more people each year than all cancers combined. Yet Americans are more worried about cancer and many are focused solely on their cholesterol numbers as an indicator of their risk for a heart attack, according to a national survey conducted by MDVIP and Ipsos.
Despite the wealth of information available about heart disease, 62 percent of Americans surveyed failed the Heart Attack IQ quiz, proving that many misconceptions about the disease still exist. The MDVIP survey reveals many Americans are uncertain, if not ill-informed, about what causes a heart attack and what increases a person’s risk for having one.
Heart IQ Quiz
How MDVIP and Your Doctor Work to Lower Your Heart Disease Risk
Your heart circulates blood through your body, provides oxygen and nutrients to keep you and your other organs going and pumps out waste materials and carbon dioxide. But it makes so much more possible — a strong heart helps us climb stairs and scale mountains. It allows us to run distances and walk to the mailbox. A strong heart can lead to a long life.
That’s why it’s so important to take care of your heart, and why MDVIP and your doctor work hard to help you keep your heart beating.
When it comes to things that prevent a long life, most of us worry about something other than heart disease. Study after study demonstrates how little most of us understand about heart disease. We’re generally more afraid of cancer, even though heart disease causes far more deaths.
When MDVIP surveyed women and men about heart disease, most said the leading cause of death was something other than heart disease. Women, for example, were worried more about breast cancer, even though heart disease kills seven times as many women as breast cancer. In fact, the 650,000 killed by heart disease each year account for 1 in 4 deaths.
Here’s the good part: 80 percent of heart disease cases are preventable.
Preventing Heart Disease
How do you prevent a disease that’s so common, widespread and pernicious? Prevention starts by partnering with your primary care doctor. MDVIP-affiliated physicians have time to really look at your risk factors for heart disease and go beyond the basics.
For example, most primary care doctors use a few simple tools to measure heart disease risk: Family history, weight and height, blood pressure and a simple cholesterol test (see chart on next page). And while this information can help a doctor determine some risk, it’s often not enough: Half of patients who have a heart attack have normal cholesterol levels.
At MDVIP, we believe that’s unacceptable. It’s why the MDVIP Wellness Program includes tests that better illuminate your heart disease risk. This advance testing finds 40 percent more people at risk for heart disease than standard cholesterol tests. Your MDVIP-affiliated doctor can also test you for chronic inflammation, which is a major contributor to heart disease. Most primary care doctors do not test for inflammation as part of routine heart disease prevention.
But screening and testing are just a part of prevention. Lifestyle modifications and medications can help lower your risk substantially. That’s where partnering with your MDVIP-affiliated physician comes in.
With the right partnership, you can better identify your risk for heart disease and work to reduce it. For two decades, MDVIP affiliates and their patients have made steady gains against heart disease, progress documented in 10 peer-reviewed, published studies.
We believe, for example, efforts around managing heart disease risk explain why members seek emergency care and are hospitalized less often than patients in traditional primary care. These outcomes are made possible by MDVIP’s unique primary care model, which gives physicians more tools to better identify disease risk and more time to help their patients reduce that risk. When it comes to MDVIP, your heart matters.