Baltimore Hebrew Congregation brotherhood hosted personable and informative guest speaker, Dr. Benjamin "Ben" DuBois at its recent breakfast meeting May 4.
Dr. DuBois is currently the director of the Coronary Care Unit at Sinai Hospital and a partner at Woodholme Cardiovascular Associates.
An excellent cardiologist, Dr. DuBois practices both clinical and interventional cardiology, performing over 125 angioplasties and 300 caths a year. He has been in practice since 1985.
The topic of his interesting discussion was "Coronary Heart Disease and You."
One of the most frequent causes of heart disease is atherosclerosis, thickening and hardening of artery walls that occurs over the course of a lifetime. The risk for atherosclerotic disease increases with the aging process, partially because other risk factors such as blood pressure, cholesterol and body weight also increase with age.
A heart attack is a very common form of heart disease, which is a treatable, but incurable, chronic condition.
A heart attack is one of the events that can occur due to atherosclerosis, which can develop in any of the major arteries and the aorta, a large vessel that carries blood away from the heart. Plaques gradually constrict these arteries. A sudden rupture of minor plaques causes heart attacks to occur.
What leads to coronary disease? A few factors are genetics, family history and health issues.
Half of all men and one-third of all women will develop heart disease during their lifetimes.
The symptoms of a heart attack are varied, and include chest pain that is severe and lasts longer than twenty minutes, labored and/or difficulty breathing, fatigue, weakness, fainting, dizziness, heart palpitations, leg pain radiating from the legs, arms or jaw, and nausea or lack of appetite.
It is crucial that anyone who feels they may be having a heart attack goes to the emergency room immediately, as life-saving medication may be necessary to remove blood clots.
Another suggestion is to go to a hospital with a Cath Lab on site.
Also discussed were "stents." If you survive a heart attack, and are treated with a stent or bypass surgery, these procedures restore blood flow through blocked arteries.
It should be noted that some people with mild heart failure may experience no symptoms at all.
Do see a cardiologist for any confirmation regarding the suspicion of heart disease.
Thank you Dr. DuBois for your very interesting cardiac update. Brotherhood members were very interested in hearing your discussion regarding heart attacks.
Thank you also Bob Berenhaus, brotherhood member, for requesting his top notch cardiologist Dr.DuBois, to discuss cardiology with the brotherhood.
Catering this morning was done by the brotherhood catering crew. Breakfast included lox, cream cheese, veggies, bagels, scrambled eggs, pastries and coffee.
The great catering crew includes Aaron Bloom, Joe Bocuzzi, Richard Fishbein, Buddy Frank, Art Kalisch, Marshall Klein, Larry Kobren and Alan Platt.
Sid Bravmann is brotherhood program coordinator.
Dan Mayer, who has been the dedicated brotherhood president the past two years, concludes his tenure this June.