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Heart Health

  • By: Nicholas L. Lockwood & Stephen M. Yoshimura
  • In: Encyclopedia of Health Communication
  • Edited by: Teresa L. Thompson
  • Subject:Public Health Education & Health Promotion, Health Psychology, Health Communication

Heart health is marked by the absence of cardiovascular conditions that interfere with an individual's quality of life and require little, if any, medical attention. Measures of heart health typically include physiological and biological characteristics such as blood pressure, heart rate, total cholesterol levels, and the degree of atherosclerosis, or artery blockage. The social interactions one has with medical providers and social network members play an important role in the prevention, development, management, and recovery of heart health.

Cardiovascular disease is a general term used to describe numerous heart ailments, including myocardial ischemia (i.e., arrhythmia), cardiac arrest, heart failure, myocardial infarction (i.e., a heart attack), and congenital heart defects. Cardiovascular disease is currently a leading cause of morbidity and the most common cause of mortality in ...

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