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Dare to C.A.R.E.

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Dare to C.A.R.E. is a free heart and vascular disease education and screening program provided as a cooperative effort through Dominican Hospital and Dominican Hospital Foundation.

If caught early, vascular disease can be treated to prevent serious problems such as heart attack or stroke, amputations, or even death.

How Does Dare To C.A.R.E. Work?

The Dare to C.A.R.E. program focuses on abnormalities that cause the following conditions:

  • Abdominal aortic aneurysms: the third leading cause of sudden death in men over 60. Most people do not experience symptoms. People who do experience symptoms describe them as a pulsing feeling in the abdomen, unexplained pain in the lower back, tenderness in the chest, nausea, and a feeling of a constantly full stomach.
  • Carotid artery disease: responsible for at least 300,000 strokes a year. Common symptoms usually happen suddenly and can include weakness or numbness of the face or extremities, difficulty in speaking or understanding, trouble with vision, dizziness or trouble walking, and headaches
  • Extremity artery disease: affecting more than 10 million Americans. Symptoms can include pain or tiredness in the legs, buttock pain, burning or tingling in the feet, sores or breaks in the skin of the legs and feet, loss of hair on the feet or toes, changes in skin color, decrease in skin temperature, and impotence.
  • Renal artery stenosis: affecting more than 5 million Americans. Warning signs may include uncontrolled high blood pressure, sudden kidney failure or problems with kidney function, congestive heart failure, and pulmonary edema.

Because plaque builds up over time, the risk of vascular disease increases with age. You are eligible for this screening if you meeting the following criteria.

  • Over age 60
  • Over age 50 with risk factors including: smoking, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, family history of heart disease, lack of physical activity, and obesity
  • Over age 40 with diabetes

What To Expect During Your Screening

At the appointment, the vascular technologist will conduct a painless 15-minute, noninvasive ultrasound of your neck, abdomen, and legs.

After the screening, your results will be shared with you as well as sent to your doctor. If the ultrasound uncovers disease, you and your primary care physician will discuss a treatment plan that works best for you.

Learn More About Our Dare To C.A.R.E. Program

Due to COVID-19, the D.A.R.E. to Care clinic is currently closed until further notice. If you or someone you know is at high risk for vascular disease due to risk factors including smoking, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, family history of heart disease, lack of physical activity, or obesity, please contact your primary care provider about screening.

The Dare to C.A.R.E. clinic is located at 3150 Mission Drive (first floor), Santa Cruz, CA 95065. Appointments required.

The equipment was generously funded by the Dominican Hospital Foundation.