Advanced Cardiovascular Screening

Although many people in the Kansas City area know Rock Creek as a premier wellness center for age management and medical weight loss, we’re health care providers at our core. That’s why we provide Advanced Cardiovascular Screening services for our clients.

Heart disease continues to be the leading cause of death for both men and women in the United States. Peripheral vascular disease, including Cerebral Vascular Accidents such as strokes, is the third leading cause of death.

To put it into perspective, one American dies every 40 seconds of cardiovascular disease (CVD) which causes one in every three deaths in the US. Over 630,000 Americans will have a heart attack for the first time and 280,000 will have a recurrent heart attack this year.

While these numbers are staggering in an age of modern medicine, the medical community has largely been reactive only with a record number of stent placement procedures and coronary artery bypass surgeries being performed each year.

Here at Rock Creek Wellness, we believe most people who develop CVD could have prevented it in the first place with appropriate and timely cardiovascular screenings. *We believe that lab testing and imaging procedures as well as lifestyle modifications through dietary changes, exercise and weight loss can make a significant difference.

*Individual results may vary.

Cardiovascular Screening Blood Test

At Rock Creek Wellness, we strive to prevent CVD by offering advanced blood testing to identify cardiovascular risk with emerging biomarkers of disease. We evaluate the following lipoprotein and inflammatory risk factors:

Risk Factor Relative Risk Impact on Cardio Vascular Disease
Apo B
A high Apo B number indicates increased risk for heart disease.
HDL Subclasses
The largest HDL subclass particles are associated with the cardioprotective function of HDL. Higher levels translate to lower cardiac risk.
LDL Subclasses
Small LDL subclass particles cause plaque build-up to progress much faster because they enter the artery wall more easily than large LDL particles.
High levels of lipoprotein(a) contribute to atherosclerosis and is not helped by statin drugs.
This is a marker for vascular inflammation. High levels indicate increased risk for heart disease and stroke particularly if blood pressure and CRP are also elevated.
Useful in evaluating those at moderate risk for heart disease and determining if more intensive treatment is warranted.
An amino acid inflammatory marker that if elevated has shown a correlation with increased cardiac risk. May be controlled by B-vitamin supplementation.

Histopathology of Stable versus Vulnerable/Ruptured Atherosclerotic Plaque

Legend: Stable plaques (left) have low concentrations of Lp-PLA2, relatively few inflammatory cells, and thick fibrous caps, commonly seen with significant coronary stenoses. In contrast, ruptured plaques (right) are characterized by high local concentrations of Lp-PLA2, abundant inflammatory cells, and a thin fibrous cap.(adapted from Corson et al. AJC. (2008) 101[suppl]:41F-50F.)

We also include myeloperoxidase (MPO), ApoE genotype analysis, and Quest Diagnostic’s Omega-3 and -6 fatty acids testing as part of our standard baseline lab for Premier Care wellness center patients.  Specific Genetic cardiovascular markers can also be done, depending on individual risk factors family and history.

Cardiovascular Imaging

An echocardiogram is becoming a ubiquitous test at the Mayo Clinic. A wellness center exam is not considered complete until a patient has an echocardiogram. Why is that? Cardiovascular disease is responsible for over 45 percent of all deaths worldwide.

Most people will die of heart failure and most heart failure is asymptomatic and silent for sometimes years. Many patients who die have heart dysfunction that is caused by an underlying disease that is both treatable and preventable.

If we could catch this heart dysfunction in its earliest stages over 70 percent of the cases are reversible. But how do we find it early? Cardiovascular screening is the answer.

Echocardiogram imaging of the heart and surrounding vessels is the best and most non-invasive type of cardiovascular screening.The echocardiogram rates higher than an EKG, stress test, PET scan, nuclear scan or a Cat Scan with calcium scoring.

At our wellness center, we also provide screening of both carotid arteries and a screen for abdominal aortic aneurysms. If necessary, peripheral vascular screening looking at ankle-brachial indexes can also be done.

We are pleased to be associated with Premier Imaging, an amazing ACR-Accredited facility that employs only the finest radiologists to read and interpret patients’ reports. Using only the highest quality, state-of-the-art imaging equipment and the most highly skilled, certified technicians, Premier Imaging is firmly a leader in the Midwest who has made it easy to confidently refer our patients to. We offer a cash price screening package of these tests to established patients bundled for a very affordable rate of $275.

It’s no secret that cardiovascular disease (CVD) has been the most common cause of death in the United States for more than 100 years. In fact, these days, this disease affects more than 81 million Americans. In order to detect early changes in heart health, you would need a specific type of test known as a Max Pulse Cardiovascular Assessment. This test takes only three minutes to complete but will provide you with a great idea of what your risk level is for having CVD.

While many people get a bit nervous when it comes to tests that assess their heart, the Max Pulse is an easy, painless, and non-invasive option that can measure the pulse waveform and heart rate to give your doctor a better idea of the following cardiovascular and autonomic nervous system factors:

  • Heart Rate Variability (HRV)
  • Wave Type
  • Eccentric Constriction (EC)
  • Atherosclerotic progress
  • Differential Pulse Wave Index (DPI)
  • Arterial Elasticity (AE)
  • Mean heart rate
  • Remaining blood volume (RBV)
  • Stress score
  • Stress levels

What Contributes to Heart Disease?

There are a number of different factors that can contribute to a person being diagnosed with heart disease. The following are some of the most common:

  • Age – The older you get, the more damaged and narrow your arteries can become, weakening your heart muscle.
  • Sex – Men are known to be at a higher risk of developing heart disease. On the other hand, women’s risk does increase after menopause.
  • Family history – If your relatives have suffered from heart disease, you could be at a great risk of developing it yourself.
  • Hormone imbalance – Often having an imbalance of hormones can lead to CVD as they can cause issues within every area of your body, even the heart.
  • Smoking – Nicotine constricts your blood vessels and carbon monoxide will damage the inner lining of your vessels as well.

How Can Rock Creek Wellness Help?

If you want to know whether or not you are at risk of developing heart disease, Rock Creek Wellness can help you. We offer the Max Pulse Cardiovascular Assessment in order to give our patients a better idea of the shape their heart is in. Contact us today to make an appointment with a member of our talented and caring wellness center staff.

Just get your results back? Check out our Cardiovascular Assessment Result Interpretation Guide here!