MONROE COUNTY, FL – Monroe County Fire Rescue offers free blood pressure and glucose screening for the community. The program’s goal is to help reduce heart disease and diabetes by conducting regular check-ups at Monroe County Fire Stations and now at assigned locations throughout the community.
All Monroe County residents are encouraged to take advantage of the free screenings, which can provide telltale signs and symptoms of these life-threatening conditions before they become significantly problematic.
In the Florida Keys, cardiovascular disease and strokes are the second leading cause of death, just behind cancer. Heart attacks and strokes are influenced by several contributing factors such as gender, genetic predisposition, alcohol intake, smoking and, most significantly, high blood pressure or hypertension.
High blood pressure occurs when the force of blood pushing against the walls of the arteries is consistently too high. Uncontrolled high blood pressure causes heart enlargement and leads to more serious complications over time, like congestive heart failure, strokes and heart attacks.
Hypertension is known as “the silent killer” because there often are no obvious symptoms indicating something is wrong. This is why it is so important to check your blood pressure regularly. Symptoms may be present as headaches, visual disturbances, nosebleeds or shortness of breath, all of which should be discussed with a physician.
Diabetes is a disease that occurs when the pancreas stops producing or does not produce enough insulin. If left untreated, diabetes can lead to complications, including heart disease, strokes, blindness, erectile dysfunction and kidney or nerve damage. Type 2 diabetes may be controlled by eating healthy food and living an active lifestyle, and by regularly checking blood glucose levels.