Since vascular diseases often can be treated effectively following early detection, St. Rose Health Center is now offering three screenings to test for these conditions.
The cardiovascular-screening program started recently in St. Rose’s Radiology Department on the facility’s first floor.
Shannon Deines, radiology operations manager, noted that the screenings are non-invasive and pain free.
“We encourage anyone with concerns about vascular disease to give us a call for an appointment,” Deines said. “Each test takes less than 30 minutes and the cost is very affordable.”
One of the screens entails checking for peripheral arterial disease (PAD); the test helps determine the risk of blockages in the leg arteries.
“Those who are wondering about PAD may want to answer a few questions,” Deines noted. “For example: do you have cramping, aching or fatigue in your legs when you walk? Do you have poorly healing ulcers on your feet or toes? And do you smoke, or have hypertension, diabetes or high cholesterol?”
Another new test at St. Rose is a stroke scan that uses ultrasound to look inside the carotid arteries in the neck. This can detect early signs of plaque build-up.
And the third screening involves a scan for an abdominal aortic aneurysm, which is a ballooning of the arterial wall that may cause the artery to burst.
A doctor’s referral is not necessary and the fee for each screening is $30. However, if someone chooses to have all three at the same time, the total cost is $75. Cash and checks are accepted.
Deines also noted that $15 atrial fibrillation screens for cardiac arrhythmias are available at Hays Medical Center, co-owner of St. Rose.
“When the screening results are available, we mail them to the patient,” Deines said. “The patient can then share the results with their doctors if they want to.
“If any concerns are detected,” she elaborated, “we will recommend they follow up with their doctor for further testing. This type of proactive health care can go a long way to preventing or alleviating more serious conditions in the future.”
Dr. Mohammed Janif, a HaysMed cardiologist who sees patients in Great Bend, also encourages people with concerns about these conditions to make a screening appointment.
“Early identification of PAD reduces the long-term risk of losing a limb,” Dr. Janif said. “The scan for carotid artery disease can reduce the long-term risk of stroke.
“In addition,” he noted, “an aneurysm that ruptures can have fatal results. Early identification and surveillance help tremendously. It is so important to be screened for these conditions because in the long run it will probably save your life.”
Dr. Mauricio Anaya, HaysMed cardiologist who sees patients at St. Rose, couldn’t agree more. “For example, a patient with peripheral vascular disease (blockage in leg arteries) is a high risk for myocardial infarction (heart attack), which usually is the most common cause of death in this population,” Dr. Anaya said. “The legs are windows to the heart.”
Dr. Anaya also noted that the United States Preventive Services Task Force recommends a screening for abdominal aneurysm in men 65-75 years of age who have ever smoked.
“In many countries, the recommendation also applies to females,” Dr. Anaya added. “It is a silent killer. But with early detection, it often can be treated with an outpatient, minimally invasive procedure.”
Drs. Anaya and Janif also noted that smokers, and people with high blood pressure, diabetes or a family history of these conditions should take advantage of the screenings at St. Rose.
The phone number for radiology is 620-786-6117.
St. Rose specializes in primary care, prevention and wellness. Services include St. Rose Family Medicine, Convenient Care Walk-in Clinic, Great Bend Internists, imaging, infusion clinic, WellnessWorks, one-day surgical procedures, Golden Belt Home Health & Hospice and a comprehensive Specialty Clinic. St. Rose is co-owned by Hays Medical Center and Centura Health.