Prevention, early detection highlighted during American Heart Month

DEERFIELD BEACH, Fla. – Just a few months ago, 74-year-old Ricardo Perez was getting ready to undergo elective knee surgery.

Because of his age and a previous stroke, doctors put him through a stress test.

“And during that they noted, ‘Uh oh, we have a problem here,’” Perez said.

In order to understand the extent of the problem with his heart, Perez underwent a cardiac catheterization at Broward Health North.

“He needed a coronary angiogram, so we put a catheter into the artery and sent it up to the heart-injected dye and either confirm or rule out any major obstruction, any major blockages in his arteries, which he in fact had despite being relatively asymptotic,” said Dr. Andre Landau, an interventional cardiologist.

Perez ultimately needed multi-vessel bypass surgery.

“And he made a very good recovery from that, and now I believe he’s almost ready within the next few months to get his knee replaced,” Landau said.

Three weeks post-surgery, Perez is back to light activity.

“I think each day I’m better,” he said.

While there are medications to control risk factors like high blood pressure and diabetes, doctors say people need to do more on their own in the way of diet and weight management to avoid problems in the first place.

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