Numbers You Need to Know

St. Alexius Medical Center is committed to your overall health and well-being. One of the ways we demonstrate this commitment is by offering free or low-cost screenings throughout the Bismarck/Mandan area and surrounding communities. However, when it comes to taking care of your health, do you know the numbers that can save your life?

Each year, nearly 1 in 3 deaths in the United States is caused by cardiovascular disease. St. Alexius has screened thousands of people, whom have been identified with a life-threatening condition, and assisted in increasing community awareness about vascular disease.

Vascular screenings help to detect the buildup of plaque and consist of three separate tests:

  • Carotid ultrasound: scans for plaque buildup in the arteries of the neck which can lead to stroke.
  • Abdominal aortic aneurysm screening: scans for enlargements in the abdominal aorta which can rupture and be life-threatening.
  • Peripheral artery screening: screens for plaque buildup in the legs which can cause discomfort.

Early detection through regular health screenings is important to ensure that the necessary steps are taken to reduce your risk of becoming a victim to cardiovascular disease and other health conditions. The wellness screening consists of height, weight, body mass index, waist circumference, blood pressure and cholesterol and blood sugar. Bone density heel screening is also performed to see if you are at risk for developing osteoporosis.

If you are age 50 or older, you have a family history of heart disease, stroke, hypertension or diabetes, or you are overweight, inactive or smoke, get screened.

Numbers you need to know:

1.  Blood Pressure: For adults age 18 and over, a systolic pressure less than 120 and a diastolic pressure less than 80 are normal.
2.  Fasting Blood Glucose: A normal fasting blood sugar is less than 100 mg/dL.
3.  Cholesterol: A total cholesterol level less than 200 mg/ dL is desirable. An optimal LDL level is less than 100 mg/dL, however; you should talk to your health care provider about what your LDL should be as this depends on how many risk factors you have for heart disease. An HDL level greater than 60 mg/dL and a triglyceride level less than 150 mg/dL lowers your risk for heart disease.
4.  Waist Size: A waist size over 35 inches in women and over 40 inches in men, greatly increases the risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol.
5.  Weight and Body Mass Index: Body mass index (BMI) is a measure of your weight relative to your height. A normal BMI is 18.5 – 24.9. BMI numbers 25 and higher are associated with higher blood pressure, cholesterol, and an increased risk of cardiovascular disease.

Healthy Heart Screenings

“Wear Red” vascular screening
Friday, February 7
9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
St. Alexius Technology & Education Center
Cost: FREE
Call 530-7749 for an appointment.

“Know Your Number” wellness screening
Wednesday, February 26
1:00 to 4:00 p.m.
Mandan Clinic - North
Cost: $20.00
Call 530-5550 for an appointment.

For more information on St. Alexius’ vascular and wellness screenings,
please call 701-530-7700.