Heart Screening Through the Years

multi-generational families sitting on the grass at a park

Taking preventative measures now — no matter your age — has the power to significantly reduce the risk of heart disease. If you are concerned about your heart or are at risk based on screening results, talk to your primary care physician about seeing an RWJBarnabas Health cardiologist.

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Plan for a Healthy Heart at All Stages of Life

Ages Birth to 17

Checkups

  • Visits at ages 1, 2, 4, 6, 9, 12, 15 and 18 months.
  • Annual visits from ages 2 to 17, including a visit at age 30 months; screen for healthy weight.

Screening Tests

  • Obesity: Monitor starting at age 6.
  • Blood Pressure: Check annually age 3+.

Ages 18 to 39

Wellness Check

  • Check blood pressure.
  • Screen for healthy weight.
  • Assess overall health.

Screening Tests

  • Cholesterol: Check every 5 years.
  • Obesity: Monitor periodically throughout adulthood.
  • Blood Pressure: Check every 3 to 5 years (annual if risk factors).
  • Diabetes: Discuss with your provider; screen individuals ages 35 to 70 who are overweight.

Ages 40 to 49

Wellness Check

  • Check blood pressure.
  • Screen for healthy weight.
  • Assess overall health.

Screening Tests

  • Calcium Score: Depending on risk for heart disease (your MD will make this determination). If no risk, can consider this test in the next decade.
  • Cholesterol: Check every two years.
  • Obesity: Monitor periodically throughout adulthood.
  • Blood Pressure: Check annually.
  • Diabetes: Discuss with your provider; screen individuals ages 35–70 who are overweight.

Ages 50 to 74

Wellness Check

  • Check blood pressure.
  • Screen for healthy weight.
  • Assess overall health.

Screening Tests

  • Cholesterol: Check every one to two years.
  • Obesity: Monitor periodically throughout adulthood.
  • Blood Pressure: Check annually.
  • Diabetes: Discuss with your provider; screen individuals ages 35–70 who are overweight.

Ages 75 and Older

Wellness Check

  • Check blood pressure.
  • Screen for healthy weight.
  • Assess overall health.

Screening Tests

  • Cholesterol: Check yearly.
  • Obesity: Monitor periodically throughout adulthood.
  • Blood Pressure: Check annually.

Additional Heart Diagnostics

These recommendations can change depending on your risk for heart disease, including family history, but additional heart diagnostic tests can include:

  • Electrocardiogram (EKG/ECG). An EKG measures the electrical activity of your heartbeat. It records this electrical activity as short, wavy lines that dip up and down on graph paper. The size and the shape of these dips can reveal a number of things about your heart.
  • Stress test. Exercise stress tests and pharmacological stress tess can help your doctor find out how well your heart handles its workload. As your body works harder during the test, it requires more fuel and your heart has to pump more blood. The test can show if there’s a lack of blood supply through the arteries that go to the heart.
  • Calcium scoring.A coronary calcium scoring test is a simple, fast and safe imaging exam that uses computerized tomography (CT) to detect calcium in the coronary arteries, allowing the detection of early plaque formation all the way to heavy plaque burden.
  • Fractional flow reserve – computed tomography (FFR-CT). FFR-CT is a type of non-invasive procedure (no incisions required/small puncture/low to moderate sedation) which uses HeartFlow Analysis, to provide your doctor with a 3D model of your coronary arteries (arteries that supply blood to your heart) as a way to identify any potential blockages.

Download Heart Screening PDF

For a referral call 888-724-7123 or request an appointment.

Patient Stories

  • “The nurses and everyone at both RWJUH Rahway and NBI were fantastic."

    Linda
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  • "The cardiac rehab center at Robert Wood Johnson Univeristy Hospital Hamilton changed my life."

    Pat
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  • “Dr. Torre literally saved my life; I was on the brink of a catastrophe.”

    Ken
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