Save yourself from heartache - - Jackson, MS

Save yourself from heartache

JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

How many of us understand this logic. "I'm at the age where I've got to start taking care of myself. I have kids. You know, when you're young, you don't think about your heart," Eric Melton said.

It's somewhat of an "Aha" moment for the 39 year Melton as he stares at the big 4-0 straight in the face.

"If you are healthy, you're not thinking about your heart," said Melton.

But now, Melton thinks it's time to take advantage of a heart healthy test at St. Dominic Hospital.

Melton starts with a finger stick from R. N. Terry Sensing, who is the coordinator of the Healthy Heart Program.

Among other things, she's checking cholesterol and blood sugar, then she quickly proceeds with an EKG and a check for peripheral artery disease.

"That's where we check the lower leg for good circulation," said Sensing. 

You can actually hear the doppler as it checks for blockages in Melton's leg arteries. 

Melton also gets a weight and height check to determine his body mass index. Then the final test is a C-T scan to calculate a calcium score.

"We're looking at all the arteries in your heart and we're wanting to make sure there's no plaque starting to build up," Sensing tells Melton. 

All of these tests are offered for a discounted price of $99, but the return could be huge. Sensing says it's all about preventing heart attack and stroke.

"We pick up a lot of coronary disease with these tests," said Sensing. "We've had several people who had to go and have a heart cath or open heart surgery. We've actually found an aneurysm on a couple of people. We're preventing heart attacks and strokes when you get these types of screenings."

Fortunately, for Melton, he has none of those results.

"Nothing was uncomfortable. They were very informative. Very accommodating," said Melton.

To learn more about the St. Dominic Heart Healthy Program or to schedule an appointment, call 601-200-8000. 

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