Preventative health screenings help save lives

FARGO, N.D. (KVRR) — In the early days of the pandemic, health officials say many people skipped out on routine health care services.

“We did see a decline in people wanting to come in for these types of appointments,” said Sanford Health Lead Exercise Physiologist Alexa Reynolds. “Recently, we have had an increase. I think people are feeling safer to come into the hospital knowing all the precautions we’re taking.”

A husband and wife from Fargo are getting screened together to hold each other accountable in seeking preventative care.

Cherish and Ryan Hoffman were in Tuesday morning for a heart and vascular screening at Sanford Health.

They say their results are giving them some peace of mind.

“I don’t have any plaque or risk of varicose veins, and I don’t have an aneurysm, which is great. She did an ultrasound on my abdomen. They found my abs from 1990, so that was awesome,” laughed Ryan.

Although they live a health-conscious lifestyle, Cherish and Ryan are in the age group that allows preventative screenings to catch any health issues early on.

“Heart disease can start as early as in your 40s, so why not catch it before then?” added Reynolds.

Catching it through a simple screening could end up saving your life by helping you make changes now to reduce or prevent problems later.

“I think it was easier than I thought it was going to be,” Cherish said. “We talked about diet, we talked about exercise, and then cholesterol, blood pressure.”

“With all of those pieces, we plug them into what’s called a Framingham score, which allows me to assess her 10-year-risk for developing heart disease. It is very important that we catch things early on because it can lead to a heart attack. Some of our patients end up getting stents or open heart surgery, and hopefully we’re catching them before that damage occurs,” Reynolds explained.

Ryan added, “We’re blessed with one body and so we’re thankful for the health that we’ve got and so, as we get older, we want to make sure we’re taking care of ourselves.”

According to Sanford Health’s website, most causes of cardiovascular disease can be managed and reduced. During a heart screen, you and your doctor will discuss how to control your unique heart disease risk factors. A vascular screening checks to make sure your veins and arteries are working properly.

Click here to learn more about heart screenings. Click here for more information on vascular screenings.

Categories: Health, Local News, Minnesota News, North Dakota News