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Your Heart Health Can Be Seen Through Your Eyes

Pixabay.com tpsdave

February is Heart Month.

Heart disease is the second leading cause of death in Wisconsin. While many know of heart disease an expert says many may not be aware that a comprehensive eye exam can play an important role in detecting heart-related conditions.

Wisconsin Optometric Association President and optometrist Dr. Amber Dentz says the eyes are a way to see overall health as well..

"We can detect heart conditions through a comprehensive eye exam. We do recommend annual eye exams with a dilation of the eyes. We can detect things like high pressure, future heart attacks or potential if there are blocked arteries. We can detect high cholesterol and diabetes by looking at the inside of the eye..."

Dr. Dentz says the eye is the only place on the body that blood vessels can be seen without having to look through skin or tissue.

She says she sees these types of complications in her own practice...

"Particularly high blood pressure and diabetes if it's uncontrolled or the patient may not know they have it. I can see it, especially in some practices I can see it on a weekly basis, or certainly on a monthly basis..."

The longer a cardiovascular disease, such as high blood pressure, progresses before it is diagnosed, the higher the likelihood the patient could experience serious vision and other health complications, including stroke, heart attack, congestive heart failure and permanent loss of sight.

Dr. Dentz says get the annual exam, take your medications and get exercise can improve not only your eye health, but overall health as well.

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