New guidelines are being published on how primary care physicians can help their patients reduce the risk of developing heart disease.
Omaha cardiologist Dr. Shikhar Saxena says the recommendations target ways to reduce many common risk factors.
Dr. Saxena says, “I think the new guidelines will allow a simpler, easier regimen to follow for patients and allow them to prevent heart attacks and prevent strokes from occurring.”
Saxena, a professor of cardiology at the University of Nebraska Medical Center, says the changes may require doctors to spend more time with their patients to individualize therapy.
“It may but I think that’s what our role is in medicine,” he says. “It’s to have a good dialogue with our patients and to give them all the tools that they need to live a healthier life.”
One part of the guidelines is focused on cholesterol management, another targets obesity.
Other elements stress a heart-healthy diet, limiting salt, and engaging in physical activity as keys for preventing heart attacks, strokes and other cardiovascular diseases.