ANCHOR LEAD: A SURGICAL SOCIETY SAYS EVERYONE SHOULD BE SCREENED FOR CERTAIN BLOOD VESSEL DISEASES, ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS
Everyone should undergo routine screening for blood vessel problems in the neck, the abdomen, the heart, and the legs, the Society for Vascular Surgery recommends. This is the first time the society, which specializes in blood vessel problems, has issued such guidelines. Julie Freischlag, chief of surgery at Johns Hopkins, explains why.
FREISCHLAG: We have done routine screening studies across the country looking for vascular disease and what we have found is when you have these health fairs, only the healthy people show up, so the percentage found of these diseases has been pretty low, probably two to four percent. Cause healthy people tend to go to health fairs. Sick people are either too sick to go or either know they’re sick and don’t want to know. So we actually have identified risk factors, such as cigarette smoking, high blood pressure, family history, which is really positive. If you have a family history of vascular disease it certainly means that you’re at risk. :31
Screening is quick, painless, and is usually covered by insurance. I’m Elizabeth Tracey reporting.