10 Myths About Heart Disease

Myth: Heart Disease only affects people who are middle age and older
Fact: Heart disease can affect us at any age. At Chambersburg Hospital, we recently treated a 32-year- old who had a complete blockage of an artery.

Myth: Heart Disease only affects men
Fact: More women die of heart attacks than men. This is usually because women have different symptoms when they experience a heart attack, and they are hard to recognize. It’s important to remember that chest pain is not the only symptom of a heart attack.

Symptoms include:

  • Heartburn
  • Nausea
  • Shortness of breath
  • Dizziness
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Arm discomfort/heaviness
  • Easily fatigued

Myth: “I only had two eggs today, so I didn’t exceed my daily cholesterol intake.”
Fact: The recommended amount of daily cholesterol is about the equivalent of 1.24 eggs. This amount is for the whole day, not just for one meal. So, if you had breakfast today with two eggs, bacon, and hash browns, you have probably exceeded your cholesterol intake for the entire week.

Myth: Stress can kill you.
Fact: Stress doesn’t kill you, but life balance is important.

Myth: Red wine is good for my heart
Fact: Red wine can increase good cholesterol and antioxidant activity. However, only about 2 - 7 glasses per week are recommended.

Myth: Taking an aspirin each day prevents a heart attack
Fact: This is true for high-risk patients who have already had a heart attack or stroke.

Myth: Cholesterol medicine will mess up my liver
Fact: Cholesterol medicines are useful for lowering the amount of cholesterol in your blood. These can affect your liver, so it’s important for your doctor to
monitor your liver function.

Myth: Exercise helps me lose weight, but it won’t help me live longer
Fact: Regular exercise does, indeed, help people live longer.

Myth: If I keep coughing during a heart attack, I can increase my chances of surviving it
Fact: The best way to survive a heart attack is to get to the closest Emergency Department immediately.

Myth: You can die of a broken heart
Fact: Although blockages are the most common culprit for stopping the heart, it is true that emotions can affect your heart. In some cases, a severe emotional reaction can cause the brain to send an impulse that could affect the heart. This damages the heart muscle. 



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