More adults than ever have inferior vena cava filters, cage-like devices implanted in their chest to protect them from stroke or deadly blood clots. News reports that questioned the safety of IVC filters made by CR Bard may have patients wondering: what kind of IVC filter they have, and if, and when, it should be removed.
IVC filters are inserted into the inferior vena cava to capture large blood clots and prevent them from reaching the lungs. The inferior vena cava is the main vessel that returns blood from the lower body back to the heart and lungs. Doctors may recommend an IVC filter if they’re worried about the risk of dangerous blood clots among their patients with risk factors, such as: Continue reading →
Stroke is now the 4th leading cause of death and the leading cause of disability in America with more than 800,000 people suffering a stroke every year. Because I’m a stroke neurologist, many people ask me how to prevent stroke.
Best stroke prevention
The best advice is:
Maintain good blood pressure (probably the most powerful way to prevent stroke)
Control other vascular conditions such as diabetes and high cholesterol
Avoid second-hand smoke
Don’t consume too much alcohol
In some types of stroke, family history plays a role; unfortunately, that is one influence that patients cannot control. Continue reading →
Corpus Christi, Texas is 1,500 miles from Ann Arbor, Michigan, yet there is a strong connection between the two cities that I am so honored to be a part of.
When people ask me what my job is, I’ll say, “I work for the University of Michigan.” I usually get a funny look and then explain that I manage a stroke research study being conducted by the U-M. The study is called Brain Attack Surveillance in Corpus Christi (BASIC) and was started over 13 years ago by stroke neurologist Dr. Lewis Morgenstern.
What makes the BASIC study so unique is that it is the only research project in the country that is studying Mexican Americans and stroke. Being born and raised in South Texas, it gives me an even stronger sense of pride to be a part of this critical research.
We have partnered with local hospitals to collect vital information about stroke in a community that is over 60 percent Mexican American. For those stroke patients who participate in an interactive interview, our field office research staff have the opportunity to connect with them on a one-to-one basis. The real heroes of this story are the patients. Their contribution to this knowledge base is beyond measure. It’s so very rewarding to hear patients and families thanking us for the work we’re doing!
Eating healthy food is one way to help prevent stroke
Making changes in your lifestyle today can help reduce your chances of experiencing future health issues, such as stroke. For example, “Blood pressure is one of the biggest modifiable risk factors in connection with stroke,” says Dr. Eric Adelman, assistant professor of neurology at the University of Michigan. And there are other lifestyle changes that can help in preventing stroke and improve your overall health:
Manage diabetes. Keep your blood sugar levels within a target range.
Take aspirin or a blood thinner if recommended by your doctor.
Take your medicine exactly as prescribed.
Do not smoke or allow others to smoke around you.
Limit alcohol to two drinks a day for men and one drink a day for women.
Maintain a healthy weight.
Raise your heart rate by getting at least 30 minutes of exercise (walking, swimming, cycling, etc.) on most days of the week.
Eat a balanced diet rich in fruits and vegetables and low in cholesterol, saturated fats and salt.
The University of Michigan Samuel and Jean Frankel Cardiovascular Center is the top-ranked heart and heart surgery program among Michigan hospitals. To learn more, visit the Heart and Vascular page on UofMHealth.org.
NOTICE: Except where otherwise noted, all articles are published under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 license. You are free to copy, distribute, adapt, transmit, or make commercial use of this work as long as you attribute the University of Michigan Health System as the original creator and include a link to this article.