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Cardiovascular disease (heart disease)

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is a general term that describes a disease of the heart or blood vessels. Main types of CVD include:

  • coronary heart disease
  • stroke
  • peripheral arterial disease
  • aortic disease

Risk factors for CVD for example include:

  • high blood pressure
  • smoking
  • high blood cholesterol
  • diabetes
  • family history
  • being overweight.

Middlesbrough’s Joint Strategic Needs Assessment provides a local profile of cardiovascular disease.

NHS health checks

If you're aged 40 – 74 and live in Middlesbrough you could be eligible for a free Healthy Heart Check.

As we get older our risk of developing heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, kidney disease, stroke, and certain types of dementia increases, but the good news is they can often be prevented. Free NHS Health Checks are available to Middlesbrough residents aged 40 – 74 who haven't already been diagnosed with one of the above conditions. 

Healthy Heart Checks are available in most GP surgeries (registered patients only). You can have a free check once every five years.

The check will take about 20-30 minutes, during which time:

  • you'll be asked some simple questions about your family history, and any medication you're taking
  • your height, weight, gender, ethnicity and age will be recorded
  • your blood pressure will be taken
  • a simple blood test will check your cholesterol level

You'll also receive the following free information and support:

  • your individual assessment results and your overall risk of developing cardiovascular disease
  • referral to services to help you to manage lifestyle changes, such as weight management and stop smoking services (if required)
  • referral for management of cardiovascular risk (as appropriate)

Having your free NHS Healthy Heart Check will help you to be better prepared for the future. By identifying risks early and taking steps to reduce them, you can improve your chance of maintaining or improving your health as you get older. Find out more about NHS Health Checks at NHS Choices.