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Rabu, 12 Februari 2014

BELAJAR TENTANG MENGENAL DASAR PENYAKIT JANTUNG



No one sets out to hurt their heart. But some habits can add up over time, taking their toll.

You can't control things like your family history, or aging. But you have more power than you may think.
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"There’s a lot of reason to believe you can trump your family history or promote a healthier, longer life if you focus as early as possible on the risk factors you can control,” says cardiologist Donald Lloyd-Jones, MD, ScM, of Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine.

Here are the top 5 habits to change, for your heart's sake:
1. Sit Too Much

You may have heard that "sitting is the new smoking." It's true: Spending a lot of time seated is bad for you. Inactive people are nearly twice as likely to develop heart disease as those who are more active, according to the surgeon general.

Lack of exercise can harm your heart in many ways. For example, it can lead you to develop high blood pressure and unhealthy cholesterol levels.


But it's not just about working out. It's about moving more throughout your day.

The fix: A little more movement can make a big difference. Get up from your chair more often at work. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise on most days of the week.
2. Ignore Heart Symptoms

Trying to convince yourself that the discomfort in your chest is just heartburn? It might be, but it could also be a warning sign that you have a heart condition or are having a heart attack.

"Don’t miss an opportunity to protect yourself," says cardiologist Mark Urman, MD, of Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute in Los Angeles.

The fix: If you have any of the following symptoms, call 911 right away. Prompt treatment could save your life.
Chest pain or discomfort
Unexplained shortness of breath
Discomfort in one or both arms, or in the back, shoulders, neck, or jaw
Unusual tiredness
3. Put Off Your Check-Up

You can delay doing a lot of things, but when you put off seeing your doctor, your heart may pay the price.

The fix: Make an appointment. A visit to the doctor will let you know if you have high blood pressure, cholesterol, or blood sugar. Left untreated, each of these conditions can damage your heart.

Even if you don’t have a family history of heart disease, you should make an appointment to get these levels tested at least every 5 years, says Lloyd-Jones.
4. Carry a 'Spare Tire'

Being overweight puts extra strain on your ticker and increases the odds you’ll develop heart disease.

“If you store extra weight in your midsection, that in particular raises your risk,” Urman says.

The fix: Talk with your doctor about losing weight, and talk with a nutritionist about maintaining a healthy diet.

Shedding a few pounds can go a long way. Even just a 5% to 10% drop in your weight can lower your heart disease risk.
5. Light Up

If you smoke a pack of cigarettes a day, you have more than twice the risk of a heart attack than a person who has never smoked.

“Many of the chemicals in cigarette smoke get into the bloodstream and damage the inner lining of the arteries,” says Lloyd-Jones. Bad cholesterol collects on the artery walls, boosting the risk of heart attack, he explains.

The fix: Quit. No matter how long you’ve smoked, quitting can help reverse damage to the heart and blood vessels, and can dramatically cut your risk of heart disease and heart attack.

That new symptom is troubling: the inexplicable swelling in your calf or the blood in your urine. Could it be serious or even life-threatening?

"Your body flashes signals -- symptoms and signs -- that warn you of potential problems," say Neil Shulman, MD, Jack Birge, MD, and Joon Ahn, MD. The three Georgia-based doctors are the authors of the book Your Body's Red Light Warning Signals.

Fortunately, many symptoms turn out not to be serious. For example, the majority of headaches stem from stress, eyestrain, lack of sleep, dehydration, caffeine withdrawal, and other mundane causes.

But a sudden, agonizing "thunderclap" headache -- the worst of your life -- could mean bleeding in the brain. Being able to recognize this serious symptom and calling 911 may save your life.

Here are six important flashing signals.

1. Paralysis of the arms or legs, tingling, numbness, confusion, dizziness, double vision, slurred speech, trouble finding words, or weakness, especially on one side of the face or body.

These are signs of stroke -- or a "brain attack" -- in which arteries that supply oxygen to the brain become blocked or rupture, causing brain tissue to die.

Symptoms depend on which area of the brain is involved. If a large blood vessel is blocked, a wide area may be affected, so a person may have paralysis on one side of the body and lose other functions, such as speech and understanding. If a smaller vessel is blocked, paralysis may remain limited to an arm or leg, or even the face.

If you have symptoms, call 911 right away and get to an emergency room that offers clot-busting therapy for strokes due to blocked vessels. Such treatment, which dissolves clots in blocked vessels, needs to be given within the first 3 hours after symptoms begin, but newer treatments may work within a longer time frame, says Birge, who is medical director at the Tanner Medical Center in Carrollton, Ga.

Timing is urgent; fast treatment can potentially stop brain tissue death before permanent brain injury happens. "There is a time clock ticking as to when you might totally recover," Birge tells WebMD.

2. Chest pain or discomfort; pain in the arm, jaw, or neck; breaking out in a cold sweat; extreme weakness; nausea; vomiting; feeling faint; or being short of breath.

These are signs of heart attack. If you get some of these symptoms, call 911 immediately and go to the emergency room by ambulance. Shulman and Birge also recommend that patients chew one regular, full-strength aspirin (unless they're allergic to aspirin) to help prevent damage to the heart muscle during a heart attack.

Not everyone who has a heart attack feels chest pain or pressure or a sense of indigestion. Some people, especially women, the elderly, and people with diabetes, get "painless" heart attacks, the doctors say. Being aware of "painless" heart attack signs is crucial: symptoms may include weakness, sudden dizziness, a pounding heart, shortness of breath, heavy sweating, a feeling of impending doom, nausea, and vomiting.

Both doctors say it's important to learn heart attack signs and understand them in context. "Everybody has jaw pain. You don't immediately run and say, 'I've got a heart attack,'" Shulman tells WebMD. He is an associate professor of internal medicine at Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta. "But if you're also sweating and you have some of these other symptoms -- shortness of breath and so forth -- then that's going to tip you off that there's something much more serious happening."

3. Tenderness and pain in the back of your lower leg, chest pain, shortness of breath, or coughing up blood.

These are symptoms of a potentially dangerous blood clot in your leg, especially if they come after you've been sitting for a long time, such as on an airplane or during a long car trip. These signs can also surface if you've been bedridden after surgery.

"Anybody is susceptible," Birge says. He adds that such blood clots are more common than most people and doctors realize.

Blood is more likely to pool in your legs when you're sitting or lying down for long periods of time, as opposed to standing and walking. If a blood clot forms in your leg as a result, your calf can feel swollen, painful, and tender to the touch. If you get sudden chest pain or shortness of breath, a piece of the blood clot may have broken off and traveled through the bloodstream to your lungs. This condition can be life-threatening, so get to an emergency room without delay if you have any of these symptoms.

4. Blood in the urine without accompanying pain.

Anytime you see blood in your urine, call your doctor promptly, even if you have no pain.

Kidney stones or a bladder or prostate infection are common causes of blood in the urine. But these problems are usually painful or uncomfortable, which sends people to the doctor promptly.

In contrast, when people see blood in their urine but feel no pain, some take a "wait and see" approach, especially if they just have one episode. "But you can't have this attitude," Shulman says. Lack of pain doesn't necessarily mean lack of seriousness.

Cancer of the kidney, ureter, bladder, or prostate can cause bleeding into the urinary tract; when these cancers are small enough to be curable, they may not cause pain. So don't dismiss this important sign because, according to Shulman and Birge, "blood in the urine may be the only clue for an early diagnosis."

5. Asthma symptoms that don't improve or get worse.

Asthma attacks are marked by wheezing or difficulty breathing. When an attack doesn't improve or worsens, a patient should get emergency care.

If an asthma attack is left untreated, it can lead to severe chest muscle fatigue and death, say Shulman and Birge. Some people with persistent asthma hesitate to go to the emergency room because they've gone so many times before, or they need someone to drive them because they're too short of breath. So instead of seeking care, "They try to hang in there," Birge says, even if they need higher doses of inhalants or have decreasing lung function measurements when using a device to measure how well they move air out of their lungs.

Because asthma makes breathing difficult, the muscles for breathing may tire and the volume of air exchanged by the lungs will decrease. As a result, a person's oxygen level drops while blood levels of carbon dioxide rise. As Birge and Shulman explain in their book, "A carbon dioxide buildup in the blood has a sedating effect on the brain, which may cause you to feel even drowsier. You may lose the motivation or energy to breathe."

"A person with asthma who seems to be relaxing more, who seems to not be struggling for breath anymore -- even though they've been at it for 6 or 8 hours -- may actually be worse. It could be a sign of respiratory fatigue," Birge says. Eventually, the person could stop breathing.

"They're really in a big danger zone," Shulman adds. Patients believe they're getting better when they're actually getting worse, he says. "They become sedated and seem to be peaceful when actually, they're dying."

One of the most important considerations is how long an attack lasts, according to both doctors. "If you've been having labored respirations with the asthma not relenting after a period of several hours, even though you may be apparently doing OK, don't let it go any longer," Birge says. "Get on to the emergency room."

6. Depression and suicidal thoughts.

Few people would put up with crushing chest pain or extreme shortness of breath, but many endure depression, even though, at its extreme, it can be life-threatening.

"Depression can be a very, very serious problem because people can commit suicide," Shulman says. "Some people will not seek care when they are depressed because they think that they'll be perceived as being crazy or not strong or not manly, and they have to understand that there is a chemical imbalance going on in their brain. It is a disease just like any other disease."

Symptoms of depression include sadness, fatigue, apathy, anxiety, changes in sleep habits, and loss of appetite. Depression can be treated with medications and psychotherapy.

If you have suicidal thoughts, you can speak to someone right away by calling national phone numbers such as 800-273-TALK or 800-SUICIDE.
Speak Up When You Think Something Is Wrong

Doctors are human: They can miss important diagnoses, including heart attacks. A patient's awareness and vigilance can make a difference, Shulman says.

"My feeling is, as a doctor, I want a patient who's informed. I'd rather have a patient who's informed who's helping me so I won't make a mistake," Shulman says. "And I can be honest and say, 'I'm human. Don't be intimidated by me because I have a white coat on. Don't be intimidated by me because I'm using big words.'"

If patients can recognize potentially serious symptoms, they'll have more power when they go to the doctor or the emergency room, he adds. "You have enough to say, 'Well, have you ruled out this problem?'"

One of the most dangerous aspects of hypertension is that you may not know that you have it. In fact, nearly one-third of people who have high blood pressure don't know it. The only way to know if your blood pressure is high is through regular checkups. This is especially important if you have a close relative who has high blood pressure.

If your blood pressure is extremely high, there may be certain symptoms to look out for, including:
Did You Know?

Under the Affordable Care Act, many health insurance plans will cover preventive care services, including blood pressure and cholesterol screenings, at no cost to you. Learn more.

Health Insurance Center
Severe headache
Fatigue or confusion
Vision problems
Chest pain
Difficulty breathing
Irregular heartbeat
Blood in the urine
Pounding in your chest, neck, or ears

If you have any of these symptoms, see a doctor immediately. You could be having a hypertensive crisis that could lead to a heart attack or stroke.

Untreated hypertension can lead to serious diseases, including stroke, heart disease, kidney failure and eye problems.





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