Cardiovascular Risk Factors and Screening Modalities in Firefighters
Within the field of primary care, preventative medicine represents a novel approach to medical care that promotes health and well-being while simultaneously attempting to prevent disease, disability and death. Cardiovascular disease is one of the leading causes of medical morbidity and mortality in the United States. Certain lifestyle factors have been linked to increased risk of cardiovascular disease and, as such, are topics of focus for the prevention of cardiovascular disease. Various studies show that firefighters have an increased risk for premature cardiovascular disease compared to the general public. Risk assessment remains a paramount focus for the family physician so screening modalities are needed that accurately depict each patient’s risk without performing unnecessary testing. Specific testing modalities that should be considered are coronary artery calcium scoring, carotid artery ultrasound and EKG assessment.