Press Release

For Immediate Release
Feb 10, 2016
Contact : Donna Sellmann, Public Relations Manager  

Southern Ocean Medical Center Cardiologist William Reed, D.O. Provides Tips for Heart Health Month


Brick, NJ - There are many factors that can put you at risk for having a heart attack, but the good news is that you can take steps to greatly reduce your chances of developing this life-threatening event.

Some risk factors can’t be controlled. For example, your gender, family history and age contribute to risk, and you can’t change them. However, you can control many other major factors to lower your risk and lead a healthier lifestyle.

William E. Reed, DO., a cardiologist with Meridian Medical Group at Southern Ocean Medical Center, provides the following tips:

  • Stop smoking. Smokers are 2 to 4 times more likely to develop heart disease than nonsmokers, according to the American Heart Association.
  • Control high blood pressure. If you have blood pressure higher than recommended, work with your physician to lower it.
  • Control high cholesterol. If you have high cholesterol, particularly if you have high LDL ("bad") cholesterol, work with your doctor to lower it. Even a 10% reduction in your total cholesterol may lower your risk for heart disease.
  • Lose extra weight.
  • Get physically active . Being inactive can raise your risk. Inactivity is just as dangerous as smoking, high blood pressure, or high cholesterol. Check with your doctor before beginning a new exercise routine.
  • Control diabetes. If you have diabetes, keep it under control. About two-thirds of people with this condition die from cardiovascular disease, not diabetes.
  • Limit alcohol use and stress.

“While it is important to take control of factors that can help reduce the risk of heart disease, it is also equally important to recognize the signs and symptoms of a heart attack,” says Dr. Reed. “While some heart attacks are sudden and intense, most heart attacks start slowly, with mild pain or discomfort.”

Some signs of a heart attack include:

  • Chest discomfort (pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain)
  • Pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw, or shoulders
  • Discomfort or pain between the shoulder blades
  • Shortness of breath
  • Sweating
  • Nausea
  • Indigestion or gas-like pain
  • Dizziness
  • Unexplained weakness or fatigue

Dr. Reed advises that if you or someone you’re with has chest discomfort, especially with other symptoms, call 9-1-1 and get to a hospital right away.

About Southern Ocean Medical Center
Southern Ocean Medical Center in Manahawkin is a member of the Meridian Health family, a leading not-for-profit health care organization in New Jersey, comprising Jersey Shore University Medical Center and K. Hovnanian Children’s Hospital in Neptune, Ocean Medical Center in Brick, Riverview Medical Center in Red Bank, Bayshore Community Hospital in Holmdel, Raritan Bay Medical Center in Old Bridge and Perth Amboy. Southern Ocean Medical Center is home to a wide range of clinical services and programs specializing in cardiovascular and stroke care, maternity and women's health, orthopedics and joint health, bariatric surgery, and wellness and prevention programs. Part of Meridian Cancer Care, Southern Ocean Medical Center provides comprehensive cancer services, including radiation oncology, surgery, and clinical trials, and is connected to specialized programs and services throughout Meridian Health. For more information, visit or call 1-800-DOCTORS.