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Cardiac Risk Assessment

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Common Questions

1. Are some people more at risk for a heart attack than others?
Yes. Those who are overweight, smoke cigarettes, have high blood pressure (hypertension) or diabetes, have abnormal cardiac risk test results, and those with a family history of heart disease are at greater risk.

2. Are there home test kits for determining if I am at risk for a heart attack?
No. Your overall cardiac risk is based on a number of factors, including your personal health history as well as the results of any or all of the tests mentioned previously. An assessment requires interpretation by a trained medical professional. However, there are resources available to help you better understand your risk. For example, the American Heart Association offers a heart attack assessment online tool. And there are home tests available to measure your cholesterol. (For more on home cholesterol testing, see the Mayo Clinic article Are home cholesterol test kits accurate?)

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