While those words may sound intimidating, Cardiology Health Care of South Florida is here to help remove the fear factor. Dr. Diego and his staff take the time to identify and understand each patient’s condition and history, and to employ the most effective tools against the disease.

Arteries and veins are the highways of blood flowing in the body, and any obstruction is a serious concern. If you are experiencing arrhythmia (irregular heartbeat), your heart may be beating too fast (tachycardia) or too slow (bradycardia). In either case, the heart may not be able to pump a sufficient quantity of blood, which can cause fatigue or shortness of breath, among other problems.

Dr. Diego will check for a heart murmur and perform a physical exam. He may also order an MRI, electrocardiography, or blood tests to help diagnose the underlying problem.

Sixty-seven million Americans– about one of every three adults– have hypertension. Those over the age of 65 are especially prone to this disorder, with about seven out of 10 women over 65 having the disease.

Hypertension is diagnosed in our clinic by taking a blood-pressure reading. 120/80 is considered the optimal reading; 130/90 is ‘normal-high’. Blood pressure is always measured in two numbers. The first number, the systolic pressure, is the pressure in the arteries when they are filled with blood. The second number, the diastolic, is the pressure in the arteries when the heart is resting between beats.

If you are diagnosed with hypertension, there are treatment options to help get those numbers under control. The most common way is to manage your diet and the amount of exercise you get.

At Cardiology Healthcare we recommend 30 to 60 minutes per day of moderate exercise. This can be any activity, just as long as it keeps you moving– walking, gardening, swimming, golf, tennis, or running after the grandchildren! If you are just beginning an exercise regimen, talk with Dr. Diego about a safe starting level.

Another popular therapy is dietary. It is best to restrict your intake of red meat and high-fat dairy products; and try to consume more vegetables and fruit. Limit your consumption of alcohol to two drinks a day for men; one drink per day for women. If you smoke, stop. There are various aids to help you quit smoking, but the most important weapon is resolve– that is, a commitment to your own health.

There are medications you can take to control your blood pressure, and Dr. Diego may give you a prescription for one of them. Because there are side-effects associated with many medications, it’s important to talk with the doctor about any reaction you may have.

The Following Candidates are most Likely to Develop High Blood Pressure:

  • Those whose family members have high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, or diabetes
  • Smokers
  • African Americans
  • Those who get little or no exercise
  • Pregnant women
  • Women taking birth control pills
  • Those with a diet high in fat
  • People over 35 years old
  • Overweight individuals

If you belong to one or more of the above categories, make an appointment with our Miami clinic. Dr. Diego can test you for hypertension, and explain how you can reduce your risk– or be treated for hypertension if you already have the condition.