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Kick off American Heart Month with the SCWHE

  • Category: Foundation
  • Posted On:
  • Written By: Baxter Regional Medical Center

Heart disease is the number one killer of American women (and men), but it's a disease that in most cases can be prevented. Help the Schliemann Center for Women’s Health Education (SCWHE) kick off American Heart Month and “go red” on Friday, February 6. It's National Wear Red Day®, and the Schliemann Center is encouraging our community to Go Red for Women!

The American Heart Association's Go Red for Women campaign promotes awareness of heart disease, its risk factors and symptoms. Heart disease takes the life of 1 in 3 women each year and kills more than all forms of cancer combined. This means we're losing women at the rate of one per minute! But we can change that because 80 percent of cardiac events can be prevented with education and lifestyle changes. Go Red For Women is about much more than wearing red on National Wear Red Day. It's about making a change.

  • Get Your Numbers: Ask your doctor to check your blood pressure, cholesterol and glucose.
  • Own Your Lifestyle: Stop smoking, lose weight, be physically active and eat healthy.
  • Raise Your Voice: Advocate for more women-related research and education.
  • Educate Your Family: Make healthy food choices for you and your family. Teach your kids the importance of staying active.
  • Donate: Show your support with a donation of time or money, locally or nationally.

Also in celebration of American Heart Month, the SCWHE is hosting "Girls' Night Out: Heart to Heart" featuring cardiovascular surgeon Dr. Louis Elkins on Thursday, February 12 from 6 to 8 p.m. in the BRMC Lagerborg Dining Room. This is a free event, and dinner will be provided. Space is limited, and reservations are required. Call the SCWHE today at (870) 508-2345, email Jaren Beavers, SCWHE Coordinator, at, or click here to register online.

It's important for women to know the risk factors for heart disease. Some risk factors you can control include:

  • High blood pressure. This silent killer increases your risk for heart attack or stroke.
  • Smoking. According to the American Heart Association, smoking makes you two to four times more likely to develop coronary heart disease.
  • High cholesterol. The higher your cholesterol the greater your risk of coronary heart disease.
  • Physical inactivity. Lack of physical exercise increases your risk of heart disease.
  • Obesity or overweight. Excess body fat, especially around your waist, increases your risk of heart attack and stroke.
  • Diabetes. Having diabetes, especially with uncontrolled blood sugar, increases your risk of heart attack and stroke.

Women also need to recognize the symptoms that accompany heart attacks. Those for women are often different from those experienced by men. While men are more likely to experience chest pain, symptoms that most often precede a heart attack in women include weakness, shortness of breath and unusual fatigue.

Some of the common heart attack symptoms in women are as follows:

  • Shortness of breath, not accompanied by chest pain
  • Sweating
  • Tightness in chest
  • Sudden dizziness or loss of consciousness
  • Feeling of heartburn or indigestion
  • Stomach or abdominal pain
  • Flu-like symptoms, cold sweats and nausea
  • Unexplained weakness and fatigue
  • Loss of appetite, general discomfort and a feeling of anxiety
  • Pain in neck, lower jaw, shoulder and upper back
  • Sense of impending doom

For more information about women's heart health, download the Go Red For Women Heart Health Guide and The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI)'s Healthy Heart Handbook for Women or visit

Help us spread the word! Download the SCWHE Heart Month flyer.

National Wear Red Day is a registered trademark of HHS and AHA.