Forms & Information

Ask An Expert

Ask an Expert: Best bets to help you quit smoking for good

Q: “I’ve tried to quit smoking several times, but it never sticks. With Oregon’s new smoking ban in effect, I’m ready to be done with it. Are there any new drugs or programs that can improve my results? What is the most effective, proven way to quit for good?”

Answer from Meera Jain, M.D., co-medical director, Providence Tobacco Cessation and Prevention Program:

Ask an Expert: C-reactive Protein (CRP) Testing

I read in the news recently about a blood test involving C-reactive protein that can predict your risk of heart disease.  How does this test differ from cholesterol screening?  Should I ask my doctor to give me this test when I go for my next physical?

Ask an Expert: Headache Pain Relievers

What pain medicines are safe to use for headaches? With all the recent recalls and new safety warnings, I’m worried that I may be risking a stroke or heart attack every time I take something to get rid of a headache.

Ask an Expert: How do I get started on an exercise program if I’ve been a couch potato all winter and spring?

Q: The weather has been so bad, I’ve basically been a couch potato. Now that the weather’s improving, I want to get out this weekend and get active. How should I begin an exercise program?

Ask An Expert: Taking Estrogen for menopausal symptoms

Q: Ever since a hysterectomy, I've taken estrogen to help with menopausal symptoms and to prevent heart disease – my mother died of a heart attack. But I heard about a study that said estrogen doesn't really protect against cardiovascular problems. What's going on?

Ask an Expert: Women's heart attack symptoms and what to do

Q: A friend forwarded an email to me about what to do if you're alone and you think you're having a heart attack. It says that coughing hard will squeeze the heart and keep the blood flowing until you can get help. It also says that women may experience strange symptoms, like a pain in the jaw, instead of chest pain. Is any of this true? Answer provided by Suzanne M. Hall, M.D., FACC, medical director of Providence Women and Heart Disease Program at Providence Heart and Vascular Institute, and cardiologist with Columbia Cardiology Associates.

Forms Instructions

Heart Disease: A Woman's Concern

One in every three American women develops heart disease. Heart disease is the leading cause of death in women.

Heart to Heart Patient Education Guide

In this guide, you will find important information that will help you better understand what to expect while you are at the hospital and what to expect when you return home following open heart surgery and/or a heart attack.

Preventing Cardiac Risk: Cholesterol in the blood

Cholesterol is a waxy substance that can be found in all parts of your body. It aids in the production of cell membranes, some hormones, and vitamin D. The cholesterol in your blood comes from two sources: the foods you eat and your liver. However, your liver makes all of the cholesterol your body needs.

Proprietary Health Article

Ask an Expert: Shape up this summer with expert exercise advice

Everyone gets motivated to get more active when the summer sun comes out. Before you get started, make sure you’re setting yourself up for success and preventing injury by considering these tips from our experts.

Frequently Asked Questions: What women need to know about heart disease

More women than men die of heart disease. Surprised? Many people are. Because their symptoms often go unrecognized, women are less likely to survive heart attacks than men. Heart disease kills more than 500,000 women a year — with one life lost every minute, that’s a number we’re determined to reduce.

How can I lower my risk of heart disease?

One in three U.S. women will develop heart disease. That's why we think it's so important for both men and women to learn the basics about prevention. While there are a few risk factors that are genetic and cannot be changed, many behaviors that raise the risk of heart disease can be changed.

Mars, venus and cardiovascular disease

Both genders are at risk for cardiovascular disease, but for women, the condition can be even deadlier. – By James Beckerman, M.D., cardiologist

Preventing Cardiac Risk: Lifestyle changes

Lifestyle changes that will help you reduce your chance of heart attack or stroke.

Providence Stop-Smoking Resources

If you smoke, one of the most important steps you can take to improve your health is to quit smoking. Providence Health & Services supports you in this effort. The resources below can help you stop smoking for good.

Reducing Cardiac Risk: Calculating calories and fat grams

To determine the number of calories and fat grams you need to consume each day in order to lose or gain weight, consult your physician or a registered dietitian. To maintain your current weight, follow the formula below.

Reducing Cardiac Risk: Components of food

If you are trying to make heart-healthy changes to your lifestyle and diet, it is helpful to know some basics about nutrition – starting with the components of food.

Reducing Cardiac Risk: Designing an exercise program

Regular, aerobic physical activity increases a person’s capacity for exercise and plays a role in prevention of cardiovascular diseases. Aerobic exercise may also help to lower blood pressure.

Reducing Cardiac Risk: Determining your Body Mass Index

Determining how much you should weigh is not a simple matter of looking at an insurance height-weight chart, but includes considering the amount of bone, muscle, and fat in your body's composition. The amount of fat is the critical measurement.

Reducing Cardiac Risk: Risks of physical inactivity

What health risks are associated with physical inactivity? Lack of physical activity has clearly been shown to be a risk factor for cardiovascular disease. 

Reducing Cardiac Risk: Smoking and cardiovascular disease

Facts about smoking and cardiovascular disease:

Smoking: You CAN kick the habit – and we can help

You already know that smoking is unhealthy. The word has been out since the first Surgeon General’s Report in 1964. One out of four smokers will die from their tobacco addiction. More than 420,000 will die this year. It is the single most preventable cause of death or illness in our country.

Tips for heart-healthy eating

Following are common questions about the relationship of nutrition to heart health, answered by Valerie Edwards, MS, RD, LD, outpatient nutrition therapist, Providence Nutrition Services.

What Should I Know About Combined-Hormone Birth Control: Can the Pill, the Patch or the Ring be bad for my heart?

For women under 35 with no serious risk factors for heart disease: The low-dose birth control pill and birth control ring do not appear to increase the risk of heart disease. However, women who use the birth control patch may be exposed to more estrogen and this may increase the risk of blood clots, heart attack and stroke. Women who use high-dose birth control pills (more than 50 micrograms of estrogen) are at greater risk of heart disease.

Recommended Resource

Aetna InteliHealth: Tobacco Cessation

Aetna’s InteliHealth resource on tobacco cessation including the basics and resources for quitting.

American Cancer Society: Guide to Quitting Smoking

The American Cancer Society’s guide to quitting smoking including questions people need to know about quitting and the steps to do so.

American Heart Association Website

The American Heart Association website is a patient and care provider resource with information about heart disease, heart attack and stroke.

American Lung Association

The American Lung Association website is a patient and care provider resource with information about respiratory illnesses from asthma to emphysema. Includes causes, warning signs and symptoms, research and patient care treatment resources.

CardioSource: American College of Cardiology

American College of Cardiology website that includes resources for care providers.

Health Central: MyHeartCentral.com

HealthCentral's mission is to empower millions of people to improve and take control of their health and well-being. Our 35+ sites provide clinical resources and real-life support to those with life-changing conditions. Our wellness resources and tools help people to live healthier, more fulfilled lives. We are honored to serve more than 16.4 million visitors each month.

Healthfinder.gov: Smoking Cessation

U.S. Department of Health & Human Services resource page on Smoking Cessation including a quick guide to healthy living and tools to quit.

Medline Plus: Quitting Smoking

U.S. National Library of Medicine Medline Plus topic tool on quitting smoking. Provides a guide, overview, research and resources.

Medline Plus: Smoking

U.S. National Library of Medicine Medline Plus topic tool on what smoking is and does to the body.

Mended Hearts

Mended Hearts, a national nonprofit organization affiliated with the American Heart Association, has been offering the gift of hope to heart disease patients, their families and caregivers for more than 50 years. 

National Cancer Institute Prevention and Cessation of Cigarette Smoking: Control of Tobacco Use

National Cancer Institute’s overview of Prevention and steps for how to get into a cessation program.

National Cancer Institute Smoking Quitline

National Cancer Institute’s page on free resources available to help someone quit smoking, including the national Quit Line.

Quitnet

Quitnet is an online community dedicated to quitting smoking. It includes a community room, resources, tools and support for people who want to quit online.

Smart CHOICES for Health

Smart CHOICES for Health is a unique book that takes a powerful, non-dieting approach to weight management. Through reflections and hands-on activities, you’ll develop new skills for eating healthier, being more active and dealing with the emotional issues that surround weight and food.

Stay Young at Heart

Stay Young at Heart includes heart-healthy recipes listed by type of meal.