Healthy Life Workshop March 6

The Harrison Community Hospital Cafe will be the site of the next installment of Healthy Life Workshops when Dr. Ramana Murty offers a slide presentation and discussion on cardiovascular disease on March 6 from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Murty, who has been practicing cardiology since 1980, is board certified in cardiovascular disease, interventional cardiology and nuclear cardiology.

A question and answer period will follow the program.

Cardiovascular disease is a disease of the heart and circulatory systems (blood vessels and arteries). Several medical conditions and poor lifestyle choices contribute substantially to circulatory diseases, including diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, inactivity, overweight/obesity, poor diet, alcohol abuse, tobacco products and stress. To a lesser degree, genetics also can play a role.

These can lead to atherosclerosis (narrowing and hardening of the arteries, the large blood vessels); heart attack; cerebrovascular disease/stroke; peripheral arterial disease; cardiomyopathy (disease of the cardiac muscle); cardiac dysrhythmias (irregular heartbeat); valvular disease; and heart failure, according to a news release.

Nearly 600,000 people in the United States die each year of heart disease – about one in four deaths.

Stroke claims 128,000 lives. While stroke is the No. 4 killer in this country, a much higher number of survivors are often left with lifelong, disabling injuries, according to the news release.

Diabetes dramatically increases risk for cardiovascular diseases as does being a woman, and African Americans suffer a higher rate of strokes. Current statistics also show an alarming increase in stroke in those much younger than in the past.

In a study, the Greater Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky Stroke Study, conducted by Dr. Brett Kissela and colleagues of the University of Cincinnati, the rate of first stroke among patients aged 20 to 54 jumped from 12.9 percent in 1993-94 to 18.6 percent in 2005. This is mainly attributed to hypertension, diabetes, coronary heart disease and smoking. Stroke is no longer just a disease of the elderly, according to the news release.

These free, educational Healthy Life Workshops are held the first Thursday of each month and feature physicians, nurses, dieticians and other health care professionals covering a wide range of topics such as diabetes, arthritis and other health issues affecting the greater population.

Light refreshments are served, and reservations are not necessary.