The Heart Alert
The Heart Alert is a health tool to help everyone understand the risk factors that contribute to heart disease, the signs and symptoms of a heart attack and what to do if they're having a heart attack.
CardioScore is one of the most sophisticated noninvasive tests now available to determine your risk of heart disease. Performed in our Radiology Department, this quick and painless test detects calcification in the coronary arteries, which is a sign of potential coronary artery disease.
Coronary artery disease is the No. 1 killer of men and women in the United States, claiming more lives than all forms of cancer combined. Early detection could save many of the estimated 250,000 people who die each year from this disease.
CardioScore uses computerized tomography (CT) scanning in our Radiology Department to scan the heart and detect calcified plaque in or on the arteries that could result in blockages. We then use a complicated formula that includes the area, concentration, volume and density of calcium detected to determine a person's risk of a heart attack.
CardioScore is recommended for men over the age of 45 and women over the age of 55. If there are additional risk factors such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol levels, diabetes, a history of smoking, relatives with heart disease or a sedentary lifestyle, a person may consider having the test 10 years earlier.
While it is a valuable tool in indicating the risk of a heart attack, this test is not foolproof. Noncalcified plaque in the vessels is not detected with the CardioScore exam.
No physician referral is needed for CardioScore, and insurance typically does not pay for the test. For more information, you may request an appointment, or call 515-239-2131.