Joplin heart patients urges others not to ignore signs of high cholesterol

JOPLIN Mo. – A Joplin woman who was rushed to a catheterization lab tells others not to ignore signs of high cholesterol.

Marilyn Alley is a former elementary school principal and wants to share her story about living with coronary artery disease (CAD).

Alley had seen a cardiologist for a leaky heart valve, but she ignored other signs of heart trouble. She was tired, lacked energy and was more out of breath than usual.

After some time, Alley contacted Freeman Interventional Cardiologist Dr. John Cox, who performed an EKG before rushing her to the catheterization lab to clear a clogged artery.

Alley believes she was lucky she didn’t have a heart attack.

Freeman experts say coronary artery disease is the most common type of heart disease, killing more than 360 thousand people in 2019. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 18.2 million adults age 20 and older have CAD.

Freeman Interventional Cardiologist Dr. John Cox says that many people come in needing heart work due to lifestyle choices such as; poor diet, little exercise, or tobacco use.



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