- How to Make the Best Decisions With Your Health Care Provider -
(BLACK PR WIRE) – The heart is one of the most complex organs in our body, affecting many other parts of our body and our health. Having a healthy heart is a key to having a healthy body; heart health and a healthy life go hand-in-hand. This makes having reliable, accurate information about your heart health so important.
Reliable information is even more important when you or your loved ones are facing questions about issues or conditions affecting the heart, including heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, or other related diseases. This is especially important for African American and Hispanic communities; heart disease is more prevalent among African Americansi and Hispanicsii — as are some of the factors that increase the risk of developing it, including high blood pressure, overweight and obesity, and diabetes. But there is a resource to provide you with the information that you need to talk to your health care provider and make informed decisions about your treatment.
The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) encourages you to start exploring the facts. On our Treatment Options page, you can find easy-to-understand summaries and answers to your questions to help you compare the evidence on your treatment options. Here you will find information on different treatment options for high blood pressure, atrial fibrillation or “A-fib,” stable coronary heart disease, and other heart and vascular diseases.
Learn how to work with your health care provider toward better heart health in three easy steps:
1. Explore: Visit www.ahrq.gov/treatmentoptions or our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/yourtreatmentoptions to engage with us about heart health.
2. Compare: Learn about the benefits, risks, and side effects of different treatment options. Think about your treatment goals and what matters most for your quality of life.
3. Prepare: Write a list of questions and concerns to take to your next medical appointment. This will help you and your health care provider decide which treatments will work best for your heart or related condition.
Caring for your heart is one of the most important things you can do for your health and the health of your family. To learn more about protecting your heart health, visit www.ahrq.gov/treatmentoptions and select “Heart Conditions.” To order free print copies of treatment summaries on many health conditions call 1-800-358-9295.
The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) produces evidence to make health care safer, higher quality, more accessible, equitable, and affordable, and to work with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and other partners to make sure that the evidence is understood and used. AHRQ’s Effective Health Care Program works with researchers, research centers, and academic organizations to compare treatments for common health conditions and translate findings into plain language for patients, consumers, and clinicians.
i National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. (2012). Who Is at Risk for High Blood Pressure? [Fact sheet]. Retrieved from http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/hbp/atrisk.html
ii Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2013). Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death among US Hispanics [Factsheet]. Retrieved from http://www.cdc.gov/Features/millionheartshispanic