‘Go Red’ for heart disease: Events planned in Florence area

February 2, 2018

FLORENCE, S.C. – What are you wearing Friday?

The American Heart Association suggests something red.

Friday is the association’s “Go Red for Women” Day in honor of women who suffer from heart disease. It’s part of American Heart Month.

Why Go Red? As the No. 1 killer of women – claiming the lives of one in three women – cardiovascular diseases make people consider that a woman they know and love might be affected at any age. While cardiovascular diseases kill nearly one woman every 80 seconds, 80 percent of these cases can be prevented with education and action.

Heart disease is South Carolina’s leading killer for women among all racial and ethnic groups. Historically, heart disease was considered a disease only affecting men. Now, through research and education, it is known that heart disease is the number one killer of women older than 25.

“Heart attacks have beginnings,” said Amanda Butler, the associate vice president with the McLeod Heart & Vascular Institute. “Symptoms can begin about two weeks prior to a major event and may include chest discomfort, shortness of breath and/or arm pain and weakness. We are teaming up with the American Heart Association to educate women about these windows of opportunity to prevent death and minimize heart damage.”

The American Heart Association wants people to consider making an official Go Red Commitment – an online pledge for women to join and take action in the fight against women’s heart disease and stroke. By committing to prioritize physical activity, healthy eating, regularly monitoring blood pressure or donating to Go Red For Women, you are taking critical steps with other women to eradicate heart disease and stroke.

To make a Go Red Commitment, visit GoRedForWomen.org/Commit, select a personal commitment, submit your commitment and share on your social channels.

In recognition of Go Red Day, McLeod Health is hosting several free educational events Friday in the Pee Dee, including Healthy Red Heart Luncheons at noon in Florence, Hartsville, Dillon and Cheraw.

In Florence at the McLeod Medical Plaza, the guest speaker on “Women & Heart Disease” will be Dr. Brian Wall with McLeod Cardiology Associates.

At the Hartsville Country Club, the guest speaker will be Dr. Alan Blaker with McLeod Cardiology Associates.

In Dillon at McLeod Medical Center Dillon, McLeod Cardiothoracic Surgeon Dr. Robert Messier will be the guest speaker.

In Cheraw, Dr. Eva Rzucidlo with McLeod Vascular Associates will speak at Northeastern Technical College.

Carolinas Hospital System in Florence will raise awareness for American Heart Month today by giving out more than 150 red carnations to all female patients and distributing information about women and heart disease.

Also in celebration of “Go Red,” The Women’s Center will be give out red beanie caps to all babies throughout the month of February.

At 5:30 p.m. on Feb. 22, Carolinas Hospital System will hold “Healthy Woman Ladies Night In” promoting heart health awareness among women. Attendees can meet the hospital’s cardiac specialists and ask questions aboutn how to maintain heart health through a healthy lifestyle and stress relief. Women also can enjoy chair massages, manicures, yoga demonstrations, wine tastings and light hors d’oeuvres. To register, visit CarolinasHealthyWoman.com.

From 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Feb. 24, Carolinas Hospital System will hold “Target Heart Health” at the Target store in west Florence. The hospital will offer free health screenings and information about heart health.