HONESDALE, PA — The Wayne County Commissioners were full of health-related questions as they recognized Nadine Greco, cardiac rehab coordinator at Wayne Memorial Hospital, at the weekly …
HONESDALE, PA — The Wayne County Commissioners were full of health-related questions as they recognized Nadine Greco, cardiac rehab coordinator at Wayne Memorial Hospital, at the weekly commissioners’ business meeting.
Greco has been helping people struggling with cardiac problems since 1992. She said that during that time, she has seen that patients who complete the 36-week rehab program and then continue to exercise regularly and maintain a healthy diet substantially lower their risk of cardiac-related mortality.
“Exercise is medicine,” Greco said. “I can’t stress it enough.”
While the program shows signs of success, Greco noted that the longer she works in the program, the younger the people with cardiac diseases tend to be.
“We’re still seeing young people in their 40s and their 50s… I never saw that when I first came here in 1992,” Greco said, attributing the problem to fast-food restaurants, smoking and diabetes.
Commissioner Joe Adams asked her about how many people she’s seen in the program over the years; Greco didn’t have an exact number but said it was in the hundreds. She mentioned that heart disease was the leading cause of death in Wayne County, a trend that is mirrored in state and nationwide statistics.
People struggling with sleeping and sleep apnea should get checked out by a doctor for heart disease, Greco said, calling sleeping issues a major warning sign. Other symptoms are less obvious, such as indigestion, shortness of breath, or jaw pain and neck pain. Greco recommended going to the doctor more often in general, getting a physical once or twice a year.
“People only go to the doctor when they need an antibiotic,” she said. “[A physical] should be the reason you’re going to the doctor… it could save your life.”