The CVC HeartBeat: All the latest information about heart health and wellness from the experts at the University of Michigan Frankel Cardiovascular Center, nationally ranked for heart care by U.S. News & World Report. To make an appointment, call us at 1-888-287-1082.
A stroke at age 37 is rare for most any one, but as an active adult who had adventures like scuba diving and skydiving, it just didn’t make sense to me. I knew my body.
The day it happened, I woke up with a headache. After going for a 3 mile run later that day I noticed my pupils were unequal. I should have gone to the hospital right away but I didn’t. I just didn’t think I could have a stroke. But I did.
It would take a year before my doctors could explain why I had a stroke so young: fibromuscular dysplasia. The diagnosis would inspire me to start a movement around a rare vascular disease that affects women in the prime of their lives.
The two most common symptoms of fibromuscular dysplasia are headaches and high blood pressure. Think about how many people are walking around with those symptoms that could have FMD but they are treated as every day symptoms that millions of Americans have.
It’s why FMD has been called the rare disease that isn’t. FMD has always been considered a rare disease, and is still classified as a rare disease. But because it manifests so differently it’s likely underdiagnosed. Some research suggests as many 5 million Americans have FMD. Continue reading →
For many, this time of year means spring travel is on the agenda. Those with varicose veins — both men and women — should know that they are at a slightly higher risk for deep vein thrombosis (DVT) or pulmonary embolism (PE) during a long flight or ride.
Even if you don’t have varicose veins, do you know the risks of DVT during travel? Here are tips for anyone flying or traveling for long periods of time (4 or more hours):
March is National Nutrition Month, so what better time to take stock of what you’re eating — and not eating. Finding out the nutritional value and calories of your favorites foods, along with healthier alternatives and delicious, healthy recipes, has never been easier. These smartphone nutrition apps are designed to help you make healthy food choices, which leads to improved heart health.
Calorie Counter by FatSecret
Features: Gives nutritional content of thousands of foods, allows entry of weight and exercise regimens. Features a food diary, weight chart, and barcode scanner for nutrition labels. (Doesn’t do the math for you or create charts or spreadsheets.)
Deep vein thrombosis, or DVT, occurs when a blood clot forms in the large veins of the legs or pelvic region. If the clot breaks loose and travels to the lungs, a pulmonary embolism (PE) may result.
An estimated 900,000 people are affected by deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism each year, so identifying a person’s risk factors is important in preventing DVT. If you’re at risk, in most cases you can modify and reduce that risk.
Who’s at risk?
Risk factors for DVT and PE include:
Active cancer and cancer treatments
Recent trauma, surgery or hospitalization
Family history or personal history of DVT or PE
Pregnancy and the period around delivery
Oral contraceptives and hormone replacement therapies
Chronic medical conditions
Inherited and acquired blood clotting abnormalities
The University of Michigan Frankel Cardiovascular Center is home to one of the worlds largest and most experienced left ventricular assist device (LVAD) programs. In fact, U-M’s LVAD program has successfully implanted more than 580 long-term devices. The program is one of only a few worldwide with access to many investigational and FDA-approved LVADs.
Jerome Wilson meets with Dr. Todd Koelling.
For most LVAD patients, the procedure provides an opportunity to return to normalcy and to enjoy a better overall quality of life. One such patient is Jerome Wilson, whose heart failure journey began 20 years ago when he found himself unable to walk up a flight of stairs without feeling tired. He was referred to the Frankel Cardiovascular Center a few years ago, where he met Todd Koelling, M.D., a cardiologist who is also the medical director of the Heart Failure and Heart Transplantation Management Program. Dr. Koelling co-manages Jerome’s care with his primary care physician in Lansing. Together they had prescribed medications and a defibrillator to help treat Jerome’s heart failure.
Early last year, Jerome’s condition had deteriorated to the point where a left ventricular assist device might be his best option for improving not only his quality of life, but also his chances for survival. Last May, Francis D. Pagani, M.D., Ph.D., a cardiac surgeon and director of the Center for Circulatory Support, implanted Jerome’s LVAD and he returned home just 13 days after his procedure. Continue reading →