Imagine a sewer line clogged with debris and it will conjure up a pretty good picture of what cholesterol does to an artery.
And since blocked arteries can be devastating, Jill Doerfler, M.D., encourages everyone to get their numbers checked on a regular basis.
“Anyone can do this without a doctor’s appointment,” said Dr. Doerfler, part of the St. Rose Family Medicine team. “You can come to our blood screenings in a convenient setting and for an extremely affordable price.”
The next St. Rose Health Center blood screening is set for 6:30 to 10 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 26 at the facility. Others are scheduled for the same time on Oct. 24, Nov. 21 and Dec. 19.
“This is a great opportunity to come in without an appointment,” Dr. Doerfler commented. “The $25 blood profile gives us cholesterol numbers and other vital information. Since high cholesterol doesn’t have symptoms, I hope people will get their numbers checked.
“Those who come to this month’s screening can look at it as a way to observe National Cholesterol Education Month,” Dr. Doerfler added. “It’s nice to have a special month to remind us of the connection between diet and cholesterol. We need to be reminded now and then.”
Cholesterol is a waxy, fatty substance. If too much builds up on arterial walls and forms blockages, the result can be heart disease and/or stroke. Good cholesterol is called HDL and the bad is called LDL. The goal is to lower the bad number.
“Some people take statin drugs, which for many is a big help,” Dr. Doerfler said. “However, if you eat a healthy diet, you may not need the drug or can get by with a lower dose.”
Other ways to lower cholesterol include exercising regularly, maintaining a healthy weight and not smoking.
“It is also important for those with a family history of heart disease and stroke to consider a blood test,” Dr. Doerfler suggested. “In addition, we are living more sedentary lifestyles and cannot eat like the cavemen did. They ate anything but their life expectancy was about 20 years. We are living longer and need to take care of ourselves.
“A bottom line is to stay away from fast foods,” she added. “We need more fruits and vegetables, and fewer drive-through windows and rib-eye steaks.”
In addition to the blood profile, St. Rose offers a prostate blood test for $16 and one for diabetes at $7.50 at its monthly screenings.
St. Rose specializes in primary care, prevention and wellness. Services include St. Rose Family Medicine, Convenient Care Walk-in Clinic, Great Bend Internists, imaging, infusion clinic, WellnessWorks, one-day surgical procedures, Golden Belt Home Health & Hospice and a comprehensive Specialty Clinic. St. Rose is co-owned by Hays Medical Center and Centura Health.