Oakland County, Michigan/Health/Information/Heart Disease and African Americans

Heart Disease and African Americans

What is Heart Disease?

Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States. Heart disease refers to blood vessels narrowed or blocked by plaque that can lead to a heart attack, chest pain, or stroke. Heart disease is reversible.

Forty eight percent of African American women and 44% of African American men have some form of heart disease.

What are the symptoms of heart disease?

  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Pain, numbness, weakness or coldness in legs or arms
  • Pain in the neck, jaw, throat, upper abdomen or back

How is Heart Disease treated?

Treatment for heart disease includes changes in lifestyle and/or medication. Healthy lifestyle behaviors include:

  • Healthy eating
  • Exercise
  • Managing weight
  • Quitting smoking

Talk to your doctor about the best way to treat heart disease.

Are you at risk?

Anyone, including children, can develop heart disease. The following increases your risk of heart disease:

  • Smoking
  • Eating an unhealthy diet
  • Not getting enough exercise
  • High cholesterol
  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes
Talk to you doctor about preventing or treating these medical conditions.

We would like to thank House Democratic Leader Tim Greimel for providing staff resources and connecting OCHD to community members in the development of this campaign.  Also many thanks to Kenny Anderson and his family for championing this work in the Pontiac community.

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