HEART HEALTH: Results of Breen's heart screening - KTIV News 4 Sioux City IA: News, Weather and Sports

HEART HEALTH: Results of Breen's heart screening

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SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KTIV) -

How healthy is your heart? There's a whole host of tests that will tell you. Two weeks ago, KTIV's Matt Breen spent a morning being poked, and prodded, to find out.

The tests started with the standard EKG to measure the electrical activity in Matt's heart. Dr. Ramin Artang, Mercy Cardiology says, "Overall, pretty normal. But not 100% normal." Matt has something called a "right bundle branch block" meaning one part of my EKG is slightly wider.

How much wider? Dr. Ramin Artang, Mercy Cardiology says, "I mean we're talking about milliseconds, maybe 20, or 30, or 40 milliseconds.. wider than its supposed to be. That's very, very tiny."

Small enough that Matt passes this test.

Next? The screening of Matt's carotid arteries, which carry blood to, and from, his head... specifically to his brain and face. Dr. Artang is looking for thin, smooth arterial walls. Dr. Ramin Artang, Mercy Cardiology says, "There was no thickening of the vessel wall. There were no blockages. There were no early aging signs, as we call it."

Matt's bracial arteries, in his arms and ankles, also check out. Dr. Ramin Artang, Mercy Cardiology says, "The pressures are pretty equal between the ankles and your heart, and your arms."

Next, Dr. Artang focuses on Matt's aorta, which is one of the body's biggest vessels supplying blood to the brain and the arms. Dr. Ramin Artang, Mercy Cardiology says, "Aorta was beautiful. It was nice and thin. It was not wide, and it was not tortuous. "

Lastly, Matt's cholesterol is measured. One vial of blood measures half-a-dozen things, including cholesterol. Dr. Ramin Artang, Mercy Cardiology says, "The levels were impressively good." Most impressive? Matt's HDL... the good kind of cholesterol. Dr. Ramin Artang, Mercy Cardiology says, "Your HDL level is really high, which is a good thing."

So, when you take all the tests together, the news is very good. Dr. Ramin Artang, Mercy Cardiology says, "If you continue whatever you are doing, you're going to live a very long time."

There's also a score assigned to Matt's risk for having a stroke, or a heart attack, in the next ten years. Based on the tests, his chance of those things happening over the next decade is just 1%.

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