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According to the American Heart Association, heart disease is the No. 1 killer in America, causing 1 in every 4 deaths each year. Heart disease includes a wide range of conditions that affect your heart, including blood vessel diseases, such as coronary artery disease; heart rhythm problems; and problems with the heart valves or heart muscle itself. Heart disease can be improved — or prevented — by making certain lifestyle changes, including quitting smoking, controlling your blood pressure and cholesterol, and staying at a healthy weight and getting regular exercise. In an ongoing effort to raise awareness and promote prevention of heart disease, each February is recognized as American Heart Month.
On this week's Mayo Clinic Radio program, Dr. Stephen Kopecky, a Mayo Clinic cardiologist, will discuss heart disease and the cholesterol lowering medications known as statins. Also on the program, Dr. Margaret Long, a Mayo Clinic gynecologist, will explain birth control options, including a mobile medical app that's been approved by the Food and Drug Administration as a form of birth control. And Dr. Tobias Kohler, a Mayo Clinic urologist, will share a warning: Beware of bogus treatments for erectile dysfunction.
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