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Lee Health is starting to reschedule appointments, surgeries, and procedures that were delayed during the pandemic. You can be confident that we will provide the most exceptional care in the safest environment. Learn More

Lower your Risk for Cardiac Disease - Family Medicine

Smoking, obesity, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure—these are some of the main risk factors for the deadliest disease in America. “The risk factors for heart disease are numerous, and most of them are preventable,” said Dr. Salvatore Lacagnina, an internal medicine physician with Lee Health. Many believe the misconception that heart disease is genetic. “Most of it is really related to lifestyle. Changing your behavior and changing your lifestyle will actually help to treat, reverse, and even prevent cardiovascular disease,” said Dr. Lacagnina. Things like diabetes, lack of exercise and diets that are high in sodium, saturated fat, sugar, and processed foods can increase your risk for developing heart disease. “I really focus on people who are young, who have risk factors, and helping them to understand that you are headed down the wrong road, but there’s really a lot that we can do about it,” he said. Studies show heart disease can actually start as young as 18 or 20 years of age. “There really is an epidemic of cardiovascular disease and weight and diabetes, all of these metabolic syndromes function together and when you treat one of them you’re really treating all of them,” Dr. Lacagnina said. And if addressed early, treatments don’t have to include medication. “You can do a lot without medicines, procedures, and surgeries, for people that don’t already have the disease,” he said. Making healthy changes early on to your diet, physical activity and monitoring your blood pressure and cholesterol can help you lower your risk for heart disease and extend your quality of life. View More Health Matters video segments at Lee Health in Fort Myers, FL is the largest network of health care facilities in Southwest Florida and is highly respected for its expertise, innovation and quality of care. For more than 100 years, we’ve been providing our community with personalized preventative health services and primary care to highly specialized care services and robotic assisted surgeries. Lee Health - Caring People. Inspiring Care. Visit