Heart Care & Treatment | Sturdy Memorial Hospital | Attleboro, MA

Heart Care & Treatment

doctor listening to patients heartCardiology Services

Our cardiologists are board certified in cardiovascular disease and treat diseases of the heart and blood vessels. If your primary care physician feels that you might have a significant heart or related condition, you may be referred to a cardiologist. Symptoms like shortness of breath, chest pains, or dizzy spells often require special testing. Cardiologists are involved in the treatment of heart attacks, heart failure, and aim to help those with heart disease get back to their normal and healthy lifestyles.

Cardiology services performed on site at Sturdy Cardiology Associates include:

  • Stress testing
  • Echocardiography
  • Stress echocardiography
  • Carotid studies

Heart Disease

Heart disease is the term that describes conditions affecting the heart or blood vessels. The most common cause of heart disease is atherosclerosis, which is the narrowing or blockage of the blood vessels due to plaque buildup. The obstruction of oxygen-rich blood to the heart can cause a heart attack; similarly, lack of blood to the brain can cause a stroke. Both are life-threatening medical emergencies.

We want to encourage our patients to maintain healthy lifestyles, which involves proper nutrition, physical activity, and managing diabetes, to reduce heart attack risk. Most importantly, knowing the warning signs of a heart attack and seeking immediate medical attention, even if you're not sure you or someone else is having a heart attack, could help save a life. The following are heart attack signs and symptoms:

  • Chest discomfort in the center of the chest, which can feel like pressure, pain, fullness, or squeezing, that lasts for more than a few minutes or goes away and comes back
  • Pain or discomfort in other areas of the upper body, including one or both arms, back, neck, jaw, or stomach
  • Shortness of breath along with, or before the onset of, chest discomfort
  • Other signs such as a cold sweat, nausea, or light-headedness

Risk Factors & Lowering Risk

While heart disease is a pervasive and deadly threat, the good news is that 80% of heart attacks can be prevented through education of your risks and lifestyle changes. One of the first steps is educating yourself on your numbers, those related to your blood pressure, cholesterol and blood glucose (sugar) levels. High blood pressure causes your heart to work harder and can cause the coronary arteries to become narrowed. High cholesterol can cause plaque to develop in your arteries while high blood glucose levels can damage nerves and blood vessels. Once you know your numbers, you can understand your risk for developing heart disease and work together with your medical team on ways to reduce it.