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Gear up for the Smart Heart Expo

News 12 This Morning at 6 o'clock / Friday, February 17, 2011

AUGUSTA, Ga. --- All week long News 12 has shared stories of heart attack survivors. Tomorrow is your chance to find out about your heart health and educate yourself, and it won't cost you a dime. The University Health Smart Heart Expo is an event that doctors say you need to make a part of your weekend plans. The results you will receive are instant, and the knowledge you gain about your health could help save your life.

Over 15,000 needles, 18,000 pairs of gloves, and an endless supply of alcohol swabs are ready for the Smart Heart Expo at the Savannah Rapids Pavilion. "Some people come in every year, and they have astronomically high blood pressure. They're shocked, they had no idea," said Erica Cline with University Hospital.

Free blood pressure and cholesterol screenings for everyone is the goal, but organizers are pushing for more heart education too. "We're offering things specific classes for women, for people with heart disease , for the person who just had a stroke, classes on lifestyle changes you need to make," explained Samantha Stough, one of the organizers of the Smart Heart Expo.

One of the tests they'll have at the expo is a blood glucose test where they test your glucose levels on the spot by pricking your finger. You can find out immediately if you are at risk for diabetes.

The results are instant and you can make better decision based on them. To give you better insight into your heart they'll have blood pressure screenings and and a full check of your cholesterol. "Which test your total cholesterol number as well as your HDL, LDL and triglyceride numbers," added Cline.

You'll get feedback from doctors about your results and its knowledge you can bring with you on your next visit. "Its one of those things you always put off," said Stough. "Think it's not gonna happen to you or I'm too young for that, but the education we're offering will help them make educated decisions."

Last year over 1,000 people attended. This year they've moved to a bigger venue to accommodate everything. The Savannah Rapids Pavilion is located at 3300 Evans To Locks Rd., Martinez, GA 30907.
The event kicks off tomorrow at 9 a.m. and will wrap up around 2 p.m. University Hospital will also offer a free consultation at their Heart Attack Stroke Prevention Center for people who want to discuss their results further with a doctor. You can find information on how to set that up at the Smart Heart Expo tomorrow.

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