VALDOSTA, GA (WALB) - Friday, over 100 south Georgians came to SGMC's cardiovascular institute to get a free ultrasound screening of their arteries.
"What we're doing is an ultrasound of the carotid arteries," said Cardiothoracic Surgeon Dr. Randall Brown. "The extra-cranial carotid arteries are a significant risk factor for stroke."
Dr. Brown says the screening is a simple yet effective way to help people discover if they may need to have further screening done.
"What we're looking for with the machine is the velocity of the blood and looking for a cross-sectional area of the artery to gauge the level of stenosis," Dr. Brown explained as he stood next to a patient as the patient received an ultrasound.
He says seeing over a hundred people take advantage of the free screenings is great, but he says there should be more. "Anybody with a family history of cardiovascular disease certainly is a good candidate for the screening programs," Dr. Brown emphasized.
While the screenings may reveal a lot, they are not a diagnosis.
"Screening tests are not diagnostic tests," Dr. Brown pointed out. "They just indicate a high risk and the need for further follow up from your physician."
Even so, he says with south Georgia being a high risk area for cardiovascular disease these screenings are extremely important.
For more information about the screenings or to schedule an appointment to have your arteries screened, click here.