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Posts for tag: Heart Screenings

By Grand Rapids Cardiology
June 04, 2019
Category: Cardiology
Tags: Heart Screenings  

Learn more about cardiac screenings and why students should get screened every year.

Chances are you’ve heard at least one story on the news about a child or teen collapsing or dying of sudden cardiac arrest while playing heart screeningssports. This is a scary situation, and one that shouldn’t be taken lightly. After all, sudden cardiac arrest is the number one cause of death in student athletes. Many students and active adults may have some type of cardiovascular condition and not even know it. It’s time to gain peace of mind about your heart by visiting our Grand Rapids, MI, cardiologist Dr. Ronald VanderLaan for a heart screening.

While anyone can turn to us for a heart screening, children and teens, athletes and those between the ages of 12-40 who are physically active should visit their heart doctor for annual heart screenings in Grand Rapids, MI, to check their heart rate, blood pressure and the overall health of their heart. This simple screening, which only takes about 15-30 minutes to complete, could just end up saving your life or the life of your child.

The Purpose of Student Heart Screenings

The goal of this screening is for our heart doctor to detect any abnormalities or heart conditions that could cause potential issues for the student, especially while being physically active. During the heart screening, we will perform an electrocardiogram (ECG), a test that measures the electrical activity of the heart to pinpoint potential problems such as a congenital heart defect, enlargement of the heart or an arrhythmia.

During an ECG, electrodes are placed on the patient’s chest, legs and arms. These electrodes pick up the electrical currents from the heart. During an in-office ECG, you will most likely lie down while this is performed. An ECG can be completed in about 5-10 minutes, and is completely non-invasive and painless. There are also no complications associated with this screening tool.

After your ECG, our cardiologist will sit down with you to discuss any findings from your screening and review whether you need any further evaluation or if everything is healthy.

If a patient is dealing with dizziness, a rapid or irregular heartbeat, fainting, trouble breathing, or chest pain they should also schedule an appointment with their cardiologist.

If it’s time to schedule your child’s heart screening before another school year it’s time to call Grand Rapids Cardiology today. Our cardiology team here in Grand Rapids, MI, wants to make sure that patients of all ages get the care they deserve for a heart-healthy life.

By Grand Rapids Cardiology
August 28, 2018
Category: Cardiology

Student Heart CheckupDo you know what the most common cause of death in the US is? You may think it's cancer, stroke or motor vehicle accident, but you're wrong. Sudden Cardiac Arrest, or SCA, tops the list say researchers from the Cleveland Clinic, and it can happen in very young people. At Grand Rapids Cardiology, your heart doctor, Dr. Ronald VanderLaan, screen students for undetected heart issues. The aim is peace of mind and saving of lives.

The importance of student heart screening

It's a growing trend, helping to avoid the tragedies of young lives cut short by structural or electrical abnormalities within heart tissue. Valve problems, underdeveloped chambers, holes the septum (dividing wall within the heart) and poorly functioning electrical systems can abruptly and permanently halt a heart beat, cease blood flow and deprive the brain of essential oxygen.

However, simple screening at Grand Rapids Cardiology uncovers these problems. Dr. VanderLaan offers simple cardiac testing at Grand Rapids Cardiology. For a minimal fee ($35), patients 12 through 40 may be examined for cardiac defects. The screenings are particularly important for people who play school sports or anticipate doing so.

A screening at Grand Rapids Cardiology includes vital signs, weight, and medical history. Your health care provider will note your family history, too, particularly if close relatives have suffered cardiovascular disease or SCA before the age of 50.

Additionally, patients should mention experiencing symptoms such as:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Rapid heartbeat (tachycardia)
  • Fainting
  • Episodes of extreme fatigue

Students receive an electrocardiogram (EKG) to detect any electrical problems within the heart, and as deemed necessary, an echocardiogram to investigate the size and structure of the heart as it functions in real time. An echocardiogram reveals issues with the chambers, septum and valves in the heart.

Both EKG and echocardiogram are simple, non-invasive tests which can be comfortably and quickly performed right in the cardiologist's office. Results are interpreted without delay; so you know if the heart is healthy or if further investigation is required.

Book your screening

Student heart screening is so easy and so worth it. Please contact Grand Rapids Cardiology today to arrange it. Make sure that young heart is healthy! Phone (616) 717-5141.