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Saint Thomas Heart

Heart Health Screenings

  For information about heart
and stroke screenings near you
Call 615-656-0023


Saint Thomas Heart offers various cardiovascular screenings throughout Middle Tennessee to detect heart disease in patients at the earliest stage possible.   Screenings are designed to arm patients with valuable information to make better, more informed decisions about their overall heart health.

Cardiovascular screenings offered by Saint Thomas Heart include Abdominal Aortic – Aneurysm Screening, Peripheral Arterial Disease Screening, Stroke or Carotid Artery Screening and Cardiac Calcium Scoring.

To learn more about the cardiovascular screenings in your area call 800.345.5016.


Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Screening

What is an Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm?
An Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (AAA) is a "ballooning" of the abdominal aortic wall. AAA is often caused by plaque buildup in the abdominal aorta.
Who is at high risk for AAA?
Persons at higher risk for AAA are male smokers or past smokers, age 55 or over.

Why get tested?

The majority of patients with an aneurysm have no symptoms. The first sign of an abdominal aneurysm is often a rupture of the abdominal aortic artery, which often leads to death. More than 15,000 Americans per year die from a ruptured abdominal aortic artery. Most patients do not survive long enough to reach the hospital.

Peripheral Arterial Disease Screening

What is Peripheral Arterial Disease?
Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD) is a condition where the arteries of your legs become narrowed with plaque or cholesterol buildup that restricts the flow of blood. PAD not only includes blockage of the leg, arm, and neck vessels, but also aneurysm of the aorta.

Who is at high risk for PAD?
Persons at high risk for PAD include: smokers, family history of PAD, elevated cholesterol, diabetes, age and high blood pressure.  Other non-traditional risk factors include psoriasis, gout, and rheumatoid arthritis.

Why get tested?
Having plaque in the legs often indicates there is plaque in other areas of the body, including arteries that lead to the heart and brain. At any time plaque can rupture and clots can form cutting off blood supply, which can lead to a heart attack or stroke.  Treatment options for those affected can includes medical therapy.  Walking has also been proven to increase blood flow.  Medications, such as certain types of blood thinners, are prescribed as well.  Stents can sometimes be used to open blocked arteries, and surgery is performed on patients who are not ideal candidates for stenting.


Stroke or Carotid Artery Screening

What is Carotid Artery Disease?
Carotid Artery Disease (CAD) is a condition where the carotid arteries in your neck become narrowed with plaque buildup, called atherosclerosis. At any time this plaque can rupture, forming blood clots restricting blood supply to the brain and leading to a stroke. A blockage in your carotid arteries is the leading cause of a stroke.

Who is at high risk for CAD?
If you have established coronary artery disease or peripheral vascular disease, then your risk of a stroke increases. Age and family history are risk factors for stroke that you cannot control, but if you have modifiable risk factors, such as high blood pressure, diabetes, tobacco use, physical inactivity and high cholesterol, then with aggressive management of these risk factors the risk of a stroke can be lessened.

Why get tested?
Currently 5 million Americans are affected by a stroke. Through ultrasound technology, the carotid arteries can be visualized to determine your risk. Early detection of carotid artery disease can be lifesaving.


Cardiac Calcium Scoring

What is Cardiac Calcium Scoring?
Cardiac Calcium Scoring is a screening for coronary artery disease that could be associated with heart attack risk.

Who should get tested?
Post menopausal females and men 50 years of age and older. Your doctor may recommend you scan at an earlier age if you have significant risk factors such as a very early family history of heart attack or artery blockage.

Why get tested?
CT coronary artery calcium scoring is one of the least complicated tests in medicine. It requires  only a few seconds of your time, no IV, minimal radiation exposure and is able to assess the degree of risk of heart attack.  


For more information about Saint Thomas Heart and cardiac screenings available to you, please call 800.345.5016.