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Strong Women, Strong Hearts event Feb. 4 is free and focuses on women and heart disease

Alicia Taylor, RN, left, and Patricia Richardson, RN, discuss plans for Strong Women, Strong Hearts.

Alicia Taylor, RN, left, and Patricia Richardson, RN, discuss plans for Strong Women, Strong Hearts.

When it comes to matters of the heart, women tend to put their own needs aside to care for the needs of their loved ones.  That’s great for the loved ones, but it could prove deadly for the woman whose own heart needs tending and mending.

To emphasize the need for women to be heart-healthy and -wise, the cardiovascular nursing staff at Upstate University Hospital has planned a free, public event, “Strong Women, Strong Hearts,” a day of education, entertainment and indulgence Saturday, Feb. 4, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at HealthLink OASIS Learning Center, 6333 Rt. 298 in East Syracuse (next to DoubleTree Hotel off Carrier Circle).

“Heart disease is still the number one killer of women,” said Alicia Taylor, RN, a cardiovascular nurse at Upstate, who along with Patricia Richardson, RN, spearheaded the first annual program. “Strong Women, Strong Hearts” gives women the opportunity to take time for themselves to learn more about heart disease and its prevention in an environment that is fun, undemanding and a little indulgent.”

“Strong Women, Strong Hearts” offers a full gamut of events, including presentations by Upstate cardiologist Luna Bhatta, MD, who will discuss women and heart disease; Lorraine Langdon, RN, BSN, CCRN-CSC, Upstate’s congestive heart failure coordinator, who will speak about uncontrolled hypertension in women and its effects on the heart; and a 46-year-old survivor of a heart attack.

Attendees will learn what questions to ask their doctor about heart disease, the opportunities available to them to quit smoking, and about insurance options if uninsured or underinsured. A pharmacy representative and a nutritionist will be available for questions. CPR demonstrations will be offered, and attendees will be invited to join in on demonstrations of Zumba, Tai Chi, yoga, and belly dancing. Reiki therapy sessions are available by appointment only.

The event also includes free blood pressure and BMI (body mass index) screenings, and heart-healthy foods.  A silent auction featuring a Stickley clock, Adirondack furniture and other items will also be featured. There will be booths with jewelry, furniture and spa treatments as well.

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