Health Risk Assessment
Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States and is a major cause of disability. The chance of developing coronary heart disease can be reduced by taking steps to prevent and control factors that put people at greater risk. I chose to do a heart disease assessment on my friend who will remain anonymous. Knowing your risk profile will enable you to take control of your health and provide you with an important defense against cardiovascular disease.
The Bronson Healthcare health risk assessment was the tool selection that I chose. I chose to do a risk assessment on heart disease because I had the perfect volunteer for it. I chose to do it on a forty five year old African American female. I started off by asking her if she was post menopausal because a woman's risk for coronary artery disease increases after menopause. Studies have shown that the majority of heart attacks in women occur in the 10 years after menopause. She is also African American which puts her at risk for heart disease. Heart disease risk is also high among Mexican Americans, American Indians, native Hawaiians and some Asian Americans. She is 5’6 and weighs 165 lbs. Obesity is a risk factor for heart disease and one that is modifiable.
As part of the risk assessment I asked about her lifestyle if she smoked or if she consumed alcoholic beverages. She stated that she was a smoker for 15 years and just recently quit, she smoked about a pack a day. As for drinking she stated that she drinks about 2-3 drinks per week which mostly consists of a glass of red wine. Cigarette smokers are 2-4 times more likely to develop coronary heart disease than nonsmokers. As for her lifestyle habits she stated that she does exercise about 1-3 times a week which consists of 45 min walks and stretching. By exercising for as little as 30 minutes a day you can reduce your risk of heart disease. In fact, studies show that for every hour of walking, you may increase your life expectancy by two hours. We talked about things that cause stress in her life and she stated job stress, family related stress and pretty much normal everyday stress. Evidence suggests a relationship between the risk of cardiovascular disease and environmental and psychosocial factors. These factors include job stress, social isolation, personality traits and family-related stress. High blood pressure occurs earlier within the African American population and is usually less controlled. Her blood pressure was checked less than a year ago and it was 145/98. High blood pressure can permanently damage your heart, brain, eyes and kidneys before you feel anything. We then talked about her cholesterol levels, which were assessed less than a year ago. Her total cholesterol level was 160 her HDL cholesterol was 55 and her LDL cholesterol was less than 100. Having high cholesterol may lead to serious health problems including coronary heart disease, heart attack and stroke.
As for the medication regimen she stated that she is not on any medication. Medications may be needed to help prevent or control coronary heart disease symptoms and to reduce the risk of a first or repeat heart attack. With or without medications, lifestyle changes and wise choices are important to improve your heart health. She stated that high blood pressure and high cholesterol run in her family. Her bother is 50 and has hypertension and her sister that is 40 as high cholesterol. Her mother passed away from a heart attack but said she also had hypertension. Genetic factors likely play some role in high blood pressure, heart disease, and other vascular conditions. However, it is also likely that people with a family history of heart disease share common environments and risk factors that increase their risk.
I talked to her about having any leg pain in her calf. Many people dismiss leg pain as a normal sign of aging. You may think its arthritis, sciatica