According to the American Stroke Association, stroke is the fourth leading cause of death and the leading cause of disability in the United States. Regardless of age or race, strokes can happen to anyone at any time. However, there is good news; up to 80% of strokes are preventable. The problem is that preventative testing can be costly and difficult to access.
A few years ago, Mint Medical partnered with Washington Hospital for a screening event called Stroke Awareness Day. Since this disease is preventable, it was a way to partner with other organizations, get out into the community, and provide a free service to those in need of more information on how they could help prevent stroke. This successful event would not have been possible without the help of several sponsors who donated their time and services to create an event that did more than help people learn about this condition—it helped them realize what measures they could take to reduce their risk of suffering from it.
This event is held once a year, and met with a good response from the community, achieving a turnout of approximately 150 people. Along with educating the entire group, the cardiovascular screening uncovers disease in 5 to 10% of asymptomatic patients.
“We were invited to participate in the Washington Hospital and Fremont bank-sponsored screening clinics series many years ago because of our experience managing and developing accredited vascular ultrasound labs. It seemed like a perfect fit for us to get involved.”
Brad Hummel, Managing Partner, Mint Medical
At this screening event, each participant experiences the following:
- cholesterol screening
- diabetes screening
- blood pressure measurements
- consultation with nurses, dieticians, and physical trainers who are educated about these issues
- ultrasound screening done by expert technicians from Mint Medical
- consultation with a cardiovascular MD specialist
Ultrasound is the most accurate and least expensive way to diagnose a narrowing in the carotid ( neck ) artery which is responsible for many strokes in asymptomatic patients; this test takes five minutes to perform with zero risk and provides immediate results that are over 90% accurate.
“Ultrasound is a great tool to quickly identify what may be happening with a patient. We can use ultrasound to look inside a carotid artery, checking for disease that can cause a stroke. It’s a painless non-invasive test that’s quick and easy to do. At this event, we performed many carotid artery ultrasounds and made sure that these patients’ arteries were clear of obstruction that causes stroke. And in those patients in whom we did find disease, we immediately gave that information to the doctor on site.”
CC Todd-Edwards, BBA, BS, RVT, RDCS | Director of Clinical Operations, Mint Medical
There are over 800,000 people who live with stroke in the United States, and that number is expected to grow to more than one million by 2023. Although treatments are available to reduce the risk of stroke and alleviate its devastating effects, stroke is far too common an occurrence. It is a disease that can be prevented in many cases but only through early detection with studies like carotid ultrasound followed by appropriate intervention.
With screening programs like the one at Fremont Hospital, stroke risks in our community can be controlled and even decreased.
Other disease screenings that Mint Medical can perform include:
- Medicare and CDC approved Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (AAA) screening consisting of a one-time belly ultrasound for men 65-75 who have ever smoked (at least 100 cigs in their lifetime.) Left undetected, an AAA can rupture, leading to death.
- Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD) screening noninvasively looks for blockage in the blood vessels in the legs that can restrict blood flow and cause pain when walking and even lead to limb loss
If you are interested in partnering with Mint Medical in a Stroke Screening Event, like the one described above, or AAA, Carotid, or PAD Screening, please reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 510.977.8444.