What is Your Cardiac Calcium Score?

What is your score?

Heart attacks seem to come on suddenly for a reason. For nearly half of all Americans, a heart attack is their first symptom of heart disease! To help people identify heart disease before an attack, the Dallas Medical Center has created a Cardiac Calcium Score.

According to its website, “Early identification of heart disease can help prevent a heart attack, and a cardiac calcium screening can help identify the early stages of heart disease. This noninvasive test only takes a few minutes…and it could save your life.”

The Cardiac Calcium Score uses a CT scanner to examine your heart and main arteries to see if any calcium deposits are formed. These calcium deposits start off as plaque, which is a build-up of substances that can narrow arteries or close off blood flow to the heart, that has begun to harden and become calcified. The procedure takes approximately 15 to 20 minutes to complete, with only five minutes of lying down on the CT scanner. The actual procedure involves no needles — it literally takes place in the second of a single heartbeat.

You do not need a physician referral if you are a male between the ages of 40- and 65-years-old, or a female between the ages of 45- and 70-years-old with at least one of the following risk factors: diabetes, a current smoker, obesity, family history of heart disease, a blood pressure greater than 140/90 or an LDL cholesterol level greater than 160. Without these requirements, you need to get a referral from your physician.

The Dallas Medical Center is the only community hospital in Farmers Branch, which cares for patients in many different areas, including cardiology, clinics, emergency services, gastroenterology and colorectal surgery, hematology, physical medicine and rehab, primary care, substance abuse, vascular, weight loss/bariatrics and wound care. It has more than 400 physicians and more than 600 employees on staff, 155 beds and a laboratory and full service imaging center.

Make an appointment today to check your Cardiac Calcium Score by calling 972-888-4088. For just a small $60 cash, credit card or check payment (no insurance claims will be filed), you can have the peace of mind knowing that you are taking care of your health. The best-case scenario is that you learn everything is fine; worst case, you know what to do to help your heart — either way, you’ll benefit tremendously!

Sydni Ellis grew up in the great state of Texas, where she learned to love chips and salsa and hot weather. She has a master’s degree in Journalism from the University of North Texas, and she currently works in the College Communications, Marketing and Outreach office at Richland College. Some of her passions include writing, traveling and re-reading the Harry Potter Series every chance she gets. In the spirit of spontaneity, Sydni lives her life with a pen in one hand and her video camera in the other; ready to capture the next great story.

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