Heart Health
Kaiser Permanente of Georgia
Cardiologists Khalid Shash, M.D., Utpal Pandya, M.D. (chief of cardiology), and Ali Rahimi, M.D. Cardiologists Khalid Shash, M.D., Utpal Pandya, M.D. (chief of cardiology), and Ali Rahimi, M.D.

Helping Heart Patients Thrive

February is Heart Month, but Kaiser Permanente of Georgia's team of board-certified cardiologists spends each day helping patients with heart conditions thrive.

With labs equipped with state-of-the-art tools for stress testing, imaging and heart monitoring, Kaiser Permanente offers a full line of cardiovascular care at several metro Atlanta locations. Outpatient vascular procedures are also performed on-site.

The latest addition to Kaiser Permanente's cardiology services is the Heart Failure Clinic at its Southwood Medical Center. In a single appointment, patients with severely weakened hearts meet one-on-one with a cardiologist, clinical pharmacist and nutritionist to discuss their heart health. As a proactive measure, patients are also screened for depression. The goal is to provide a coordinated approach to care and allow patients to partner with their health care team to create a comprehensive treatment plan.

Roughly 5.7 million people in the United States are living with heart failure, which occurs when the heart cannot pump enough blood to other organs. Coronary heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes are the leading causes of heart failure. Risk factors include smoking, excess weight, a sedentary lifestyle and a diet high in fat, cholesterol and sodium.

To keep your heart healthy, Kaiser Permanente's cardiology team offers the following tips:

Get your heart pumping—Exercise for 150 minutes each week or 30 minutes on most days. Brisk walking, cycling and swimming are especially good for the heart. If you have a heart condition, check with your doctor before starting a new exercise regimen.

Maintain a healthy weight—Lowering your weight by just 10 percent can make difference in your heart's health.

De-stress your life—Stress, anger, anxiety and depression may keep your blood pressure high and increase your risk for heart attack, stroke and other illnesses.

Monitor your cholesterol and blood pressure—Too much cholesterol can block your blood vessels and cause chest pain, a heart attack or a stroke. High blood pressure (hypertension) is a leading cause of heart disease, and some people do not experience symptoms.

Kaiser Permanente of Georgia is the state’s largest not-for-profit health plan with 28 medical offices in the metro Atlanta area.

Kaiser Permanente of Georgia