Health Watch – Early Warning: Heart Screening

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This week on Health Watch, we’re talking about early warnings that could lead to earlier treatment and better outcomes. Doctors at UT Southwestern Medical Center have found that an additional, non-invasive imaging screening could identify more people at risk for heart disease.

Doctors used CT scans to find calcium deposits and blockages that can lead to hardening of the arteries. Higher calcium scores mean a higher risk for heart disease. Dr. James de Lemos, a UT Southwestern cardiologist, said this scan identified 27 percent more patients who needed treatment to prevent heart disease than the current screening procedures. One out of seven people who had the calcium scan needed to lower their cholesterol levels to prevent heart disease — and those people might not have been identified according to current screening procedures.

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UT Southwestern’s clinical services in heart, lung and vascular.


June 2008

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