Tag Archives: Stroke

Keep Your Heart in Tip Top Shape | Fullerton, CA

It is always important to take care of your health by getting regular check-ups. And sometimes, this will include going in to check on our heart’s health. After all, the heart is keeping our blood pumping through our system, so if something goes awry, we know why. To do this, you will need an Echocardiogram.

What is an Echocardiogram?

An Echocardiogram (ECHO) is a special non-invasive office ultrasound examination that determines the health of the heart by evaluating both its anatomy and function.

Who should have an Echocardiogram? Individuals of any age who have any of the following:

  • Hypertension (high blood pressure)
  • Heart murmur or other abnormal heart examination finding
  • Mitral valve prolapse (MVP)
  • Irregular heart rhythm or palpitations
  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Ankle swelling
  • Dizziness or fainting
  • History of diet pill use
  • History of congenital heart defects

What information does Echocardiography provide? An ECHO examination of the heart will measure the following:

  • The four heart chambers that receive circulating blood (atriums) and then pump the blood (ventricles) to the lungs and body. Both the size of the chambers and the thickness of the chamber walls are measured. (Note: High blood pressure can cause wall thickening and subsequent weakening of the heart muscle.)
  • Pumping function of the heart muscle, while in motion
  • Heart valve structure including prolapse (MVP) or leaking
  • Pressure within the heart and lungs in patients with a history of diet pill use
  • Detects blood clots, masses or infections of the heart
  • Detects inflammation or fluid accumulation around the heart

If you would like more information on Echocardiograms, contact Dr. Gordon C. Gunn MD in Fullerton, CA at 714-912-2211 to schedule an appointment today. Or visit www.gordongunnmd.com for additional information regarding women’s health. 

Dr. Gordon Gunn proudly serves Buena Park, La Mirada, Yorba Linda, Diamond Bar, Walnut and all surrounding areas.

Are You at Risk of a Stroke? | Fullerton, CA

According to recent survey, 425,000 women suffer from stroke each year. The problem is, most women are unaware of the risk factors and symptoms of stroke, making the occurrence of a stroke a likelihood. In order to familiarize yourself with strokes in general, let’s take a moment to break down what a stroke is and how you could possibly prevent it. After all, awareness of the issue is the key to prevention.

So, how do I know if you’re at risk? Here is a basic list of health issues that could eventually lead to a stroke:

  • High blood pressure
  • Family history
  • Smoking
  • Diabetes
  • High cholesterol
  • Lack of exercise
  • Being overweight

If you believe you may be prone to strokes, there is a quick acronym to remember when you may feel symptoms arise – because they may come FAST:

F – Face drooping when smiling

A – Arm weakness or difficulty raising

S – Slurred speech

T – Time to call 9-1-1

The good thing is, there are ways you can reduce the risk with small lifestyle changes. Things like watching your diet and quitting tobacco products will definitely increase your chances for overall health issues. Exercising and making an effort to keep yourself healthy will not only help you lose weight, but will also reduce your chances of diabetes and high cholesterol.

If you want to start reducing your risk for stroke, ask about the Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention Program to gain an understanding of your risk, increase your awareness for heart disease, and be empowered with healthy solutions.

If you would like more information on stroke prevention, contact Dr. Gordon C. Gunn MD in Fullerton, CA at 714-912-2211 to schedule an appointment today. Or visit www.gordongunnmd.com for additional information regarding women’s health. 

Dr. Gordon Gunn proudly serves Buena Park, La Mirada, Yorba Linda, Diamond Bar, Walnut and all surrounding Orange County areas.

Is Hormone Therapy Bad for Me? | Fullerton, CA

The history of hormone replacement in women has seen many swings in popularity over the past few decades. In 1991, the National Institutes of Health (N.I.H.) launched the Women’s Health Initiative (WHI), designed to test the effects of hormone therapy on heart disease, bone fractures, breast cancer and colon cancer. One group of women who had undergone a hysterectomy received oral estrogen (Premarin) alone [estrogen replacement therapy or ERT]. A second group received a combination of Premarin and progesterone (PremPro) [combination hormone replacement therapy or HRT]. A third group received a placebo, which contained no hormone. In 2002, the study was stopped because the Provera group was associated with a slight increase in the incidence of breast cancer, heart attack, stroke and blood clots.

In April 2011, the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) published a follow-up study of the women in the WHI who took estrogen alone. The finding: a statistically significant reduction in breast cancer over time. Among the women with a prior hysterectomy treated with estrogen alone and followed for 11 years, there was NO increased risk of heart attack, stroke, blood clots, hip fracture, colon cancer or mortality.

After a decade of fear and confusion regarding the risks and benefits of estrogen replacement therapy, medical studies have now clearly established its safety and its health benefits. In March 2012, the North American Menopause Society released a statement that supports these findings, stating that combination hormone therapy (both estrogen and progesterone) initiated around the time of menopause is safe.

If you would like more information on hormone therapy, contact Dr. Gordon C. Gunn MD in Fullerton, CA at 714-912-2211 to schedule an appointment today. Or visit www.gordongunnmd.com for additional information regarding women’s health. 

Dr. Gordon Gunn proudly serves Buena Park, La Mirada, Yorba Linda, Diamond Bar, Walnut and all surrounding Orange County areas.

American Stroke Month

mom and teen daughter

The month of May marks American Stroke Month, a time to raise stroke awareness. Strokes do not discriminate, they can affect people of all ages and backgrounds. According the American Stroke Association, someone has a stroke every 40 seconds, in the United States alone.

Those statistics are alarming and we shouldn’t stand idly by while this disease ruins and takes the lives of our loved ones. While it’s true that stroke threatens millions of lives, it is preventable, treatable and beatable. The following list is a few things that everyone should know:

  • Stroke Risk increases with age, however, young adults, children and even unborn babies can suffer from a stroke. You are three times more at risk to suffer from a stroke if one of your parents had an ischemic stroke before the age of 65.
  • High Blood Pressure Is Stoke’s Number One Target, however, keeping your blood pressure under control reduces your risk and prevent stroke. Three out of four people who suffer their first stroke have high blood pressure.
  • Stroke Can Be Largely Treatable. There are blood clot-busting drugs and medical devices have made stroke largely treatable. However, every second counts, nearly 2 million brain cells die each minute a stroke goes untreated. The faster you’re treated, the more likely you’ll be able to recover without any permanent disability.
  • People Often Save Others From Stroke. By learning the signs and symptoms, you too can save someone from suffering from a stroke. F.A.S.T. is a simple way to remember sudden signs of stroke; F.A.S.T. is an acronym used to detect the strokes. F.A.S.T. stands for Face dropping, Arm Weakness, Speech difficulties and Time to call 9-1-1. When you can spot the signs, you’ll know that you need to call for help right away.

American Stroke Month wants to help others by increasing their knowledge of strokes, so that they may be able to save a friend, family member or their own life one day. Make it a mission to help build a healthier life for you and the ones you love to prevent against stroke and cardiovascular diseases.

Make yourself a priority and ask Dr. Gordon Gunn, MD about his Lifestyle Longevity Program by contacting his office in Fullerton, CA at 714-912-2211 or visit www.gordongunnmd.com for additional information.

Dr. Gordon Gunn proudly serves Buena Park, La Mirada, Yorba Linda, Diamond Bar, Walnut and all surrounding areas.

 

Heart Attack and Stroke Prevention Tips | Heart Health Fullerton, CA

happy woman

Every year, millions of Americans suffer from a heart attack, and nearly half of those heart attacks are fatal. As for strokes, they are the leading cause of disability and the third leading cause of death in men and women. It’s very important to know what steps you can take to prevent heart attack and stroke from occurring, it’s time to take control and get heart healthy. The following include tips you should take to heart to prevent heart attack and stroke:

  • Don’t Smoke– If you’re already a smoker, you should stop or find programs to help you quit. As you should already know, smoking is very unhealthy. Nicotine actually narrows and restricts blood vessels.
  • Exercise- You should exercise daily, or at least walk two miles a day. You don’t need to walk those two miles all at once, exercise doesn’t just burn calories. Exercise also activates genes that are very beneficial to your health.
  • Reduce Stress- Stress contributes to heart disease, and if it is severe enough it can cause a heart attack or even sudden death. Try to reduce stress by getting enough sleep, exercising regularly, volunteering and laughing. Also, try to avoid stressful situations and people that make you anxious or angry.
  • Watch Your Cholesterol- Having high levels of LDL (“Bad”) cholesterol increases your risk of heart disease. Cholesterol levels can be improved with exercise and healthy eating habits.
  • Eat Heart-Healthy- Eating a healthy well balanced diet can reduce your risk of getting heart disease. Make sure to eat your fruits, vegetables and whole grains.

Take care of yourself by getting heart healthy today! For more information about heart health, contact Dr. Gordon C. Gunn, MD in Fullerton, CA at 714-912-2211 or visit www.gordongunnmd.com to learn more.

Dr. Gordon Gunn also proudly serves Buena Park, La Mirada, Yorba Linda, Diamond Bar, Walnut and all surrounding areas.

What Every Women Needs to Know About Heart Attacks | Fullerton, CA

overactive bladder, fullertonThere’s always been a debate about women and heart disease: Are their symptoms different from those of men? Ask any woman that has had a heart attack and they will tell you no. Symptoms in women who are having a heart attack are generally not that different than those experienced by men, say cardiologists.  In a heart attack, men feel heaviness in their chests, shortness of breath, nausea or other general discomfort — just the same as women do.

There’s definitely some confusion out there about the differences between men and women and heart attacks but women are more similar to men than different when it comes to their hearts. When it comes to a heart attack the most common symptom for women experiencing a heart attack is still chest pain.

It has long been believed that the story that women’s symptoms are different is a myth. Where the real difference is is how women communicate and report on heart disease. If a heart attack is not at the top of your list when it comes to the symptoms, many women generally pass off symptoms as indigestion. Women need to start realizing that this is their health and the threat is real.

How real is it, you may be thinking?  On average, every 4 minutes someone dies of a stroke or heart disease and stroke & heart disease are equal opportunity killers. The scariest fact is that the death rate from cardiovascular disease in women is on the rise. The reasons are not entirely clear, but there are suggestions that there may be a difference in the care some women receive. Women may not be treated by a cardiovascular specialist when they experience symptoms.

It’s not unusual for women to put everything before themselves and their health.  It’s deeply concerning that many women would rather complete the last five items on their to-do list than go to an emergency room when they need one the most.  In fact, it was during a recent study that it was brought to light again how women prioritize. When surveyed on their priorities the results were suprizing:

  1. Children
  2. Their homes
  3. Their workplace relationships
  4. Pets!
  5. Husbands

Women didn’t even place themselves on the list! These results make the point that while women may have symptoms that are similar to those of men, those symptoms may not be taken seriously, especially by themselves.

Contact Dr. Gordon C. Gunn, M.D., a specialist in female urology and womens health. Don’t continue to suffer and make yourself a priority, call his office today for an appointment at 714-912-2211 or visit his website at www.gordongunnmd.com.

Dr. Gordon Gunn also proudly serves Buena Park, La Mirada, Yorba Linda, Diamond Bar, Walnut and surrounding areas.

Heart Attacks & Strokes in Women | Fullerton, CA

Grandparent and daughterUpdated Information That Could Save Your Life

Consider this:

50% of American women die as a result of a heart attack or stroke. Heart attacks and strokes are preventable, according to new medical evidence. Many women underestimate their personal risk level. By participating in the Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention Program you will gain an understanding of your risk, increase your awareness for heart disease, and be empowered with healthy solutions.

Be proactive! Prevent disease!

What Determines Your Risk of Having Heart Attack or Stroke?

  • Heredity: Family history is an important indicator of your future risks, especially if your father had a heart attack before the age of 45 or your mother before the age of 55.
  • Personal:  Factors that contribute to an elevated LDL, an elevated CRP-HS, and the amount of atherosclerotic plaque within your arteries (determined by vascular ultrasound)include:

-Aging, existing heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, smoking, metabolic syndrome, obesity, stress, excessive alcohol, sedentary lifestyle, and poor nutrition.

-Menopause (estrogen deficiency) raises LDL and lowers HDL. Estrogen replacement is preventative.

-Low thyroid function will increase cholesterol levels.

  • Presence of Atherosclerotic plaque within your coronary or carotid arteries, regardless of your hereditary or personal risk profile. Plaque is a disease of the arteries and can rupture at any stage and cause a potential heart attack or stroke.

Good News! All risk factors, except age, can be reduced with lifestyle changes and proper medical care.

What Causes a Heart Attack or Stroke?

  • Over 90% of heart attacks and strokes are due to plaque within the walls of arteries supplying blood and oxygen to the vital organs of the body.
  • Atherosclerosis (“hardening of the arteries”) occurs when the immune system tries to heal the inflammation within the arterial wall. LDL or ‘bad’ cholesterol is deposited within the inflamed lining. The body’s defense mechanisms attempt to reverse the process. However, during the ‘healing’ process LDL cholesterol continues to be deposited forming a plaque with a thin cap (like a cholesterol blister).
  • When the surface capsule of the cholesterol plaque ruptures, releasing cholesterol core material directly into the blood stream, a significant and sudden event occurs: a blood clot is formed causing a potentially fatal blockage of blood flow and oxygen supply.
  • If plaque rupture occurs in the coronary arteries of the heart, the result is a heart attack. If a plaque rupture occurs in the carotid arteries supplying the brain, a stroke occurs. The size and location of the resulting clot determines the severity of the attack and frequently results in death.
  • It is important to understand that plaque rupture can occur with only mild disease and not just with advanced blockage (stenosis). The presence of any amount of plaque is a diagnosis of disease. This explains the frequently heard story of the friend or neighbor that suffered a fatal heart attack the day after a normal EKG Stress Test.
  • Contact Dr. Gordon Gunn today at (714) 912-2211 to schedule an appointment.

    Dr. Gordon Gunn also proudly serves Buena Park, La Mirada, Yorba Linda, Diamond Bar, Walnut, and surrounding areas.

Am I at Risk for Stroke? | Fullerton, CA

iStock_000014233903XSmallAccording to recent survey, 425,000 women suffer from stroke each year. Most women are unaware of the risk factors and symptoms of stroke. Dr. Gordon Gunn in Fullerton, CA encourages women’s wellness and health and wants women to be informed of the health issues they face.

How do I know that I’m at risk?

  • High blood pressure
  • Family history
  • Smoking
  • Diabetes
  • High cholesterol
  • Lack of exercise
  • Being overweight

To reduce your risk of stroke you will need to make some lifestyle changes such as quitting smoking. Exercising and eating a healthier diet can help you lose weight and reduce your chances of diabetes and high cholesterol.

If you want to start reducing your risk for stroke, contact Dr. Gordon Gunn and ask about the Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention Program. By participating in the Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention Program you will gain an understanding of your risk, increase your awareness for heart disease, and be empowered with healthy solutions.

Contact Dr. Gordon Gunn today at (714) 912-2211 to schedule an appointment.

Dr. Gordon Gunn also proudly serves Buena Park, La Mirada, Yorba Linda, Diamond Bar, Walnut, and surrounding areas.