WVU Hospitals offers program to prevent and reverse heart disease

Dean Ornish open house Feb. 26

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – West Virginia University Hospitals is hosting an open house for the Dr. Dean Ornish Program for Reversing Heart Disease from 5:00 p.m. to 7:15 p.m. Feb. 26 at WVU Hospitals Cafeteria (fourth floor).

The Ornish program includes a low-fat diet, stress management, moderate aerobic exercise and group support. By modifying their lifestyles, people are able to slow, stop or even reverse many of the symptoms of coronary artery disease. Ornish program participants can sometimes avoid the need for procedures such as angioplasty and coronary bypass surgery.

“We are so pleased to be able to introduce people in the community to the benefits of the Ornish program,” said Dave Harshbarger, Ornish program director at WVUH. “It’s so meaningful to us to be able to offer a program that works – and it works well – in preventing and reversing heart disease.”
Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women in the United States.

“More healthful eating habits, better exercise regimens – these are all part of building better behavior patterns. Even for people with documented heart disease, it’s not too late,” Harshbarger says.
Ornish-friendly appetizers will be served at the open house.  For more information or to RSVP, call 304-293-2520.
The Ornish approach has been shown to reduce chest pain and blockages in coronary arteries while improving blood flow through the heart muscle. Participants also experience a greater sense of well-being and satisfaction with life.
 Participants in the program at WVU Hospitals have experienced weight loss, decrease in body fat and lowered cholesterol levels. Studies have shown a drop in perceived stress as well.

Candidates for the Ornish program include:

  •  People contemplating bypass surgery or angioplasty but seeking an alternative 
  •  People who have previously undergone a heart procedure who want to minimize the chances of repeating it
  •  People diagnosed with coronary artery disease
  •  People with risk factors for heart disease such as family history or high cholesterol levels

For information on the Ornish program at WVUH see www.hsc.wvu.edu/wellness/ornish.




For more information:
Andrea Brunais, HSC News Service, 304-293-7087
DH/ab: 1-28-09

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