African-American adults are more likely to be diagnosed with coronary heart disease, and they are more likely to die from heart disease, according to the Office on Minority Health.
And even though black Americans are 40 percent more likely to have to have high blood pressure, they are 10 percent less likely than whites to have their blood pressure under control.
Talk about walking around with a target on your back.
But heart disease can be deadly for anyone. Bobby Z knows all about it.
Nearly a year ago on Feb. 19, Z, a longtime drummer for Prince, suffered a near-fatal heart attack caused by three clogged arteries.
Doctors were able to open his blockages with three stents, which has allowed Z to make a full recovery.
“Life is completely different now,” Z said. “Every moment has a new appreciation.”
Z now celebrates life – quite literally.
This year, on Sunday, Feb. 19, Prince’s band The Revolution – which hasn’t played together since 2003 – is reuniting for a rare performance at First Avenue in Minneapolis to note the one-year anniversary of Z surviving that heart attack and to raise funds for the American Heart Association.
Band members expected to join Bobby Z at the performance, billed as a “Benefit 2 Celebrate Life,” include Wendy Melvoin, Lisa Coleman, Mark Brown and Dr. Fin.
“I am still overwhelmed by all the thoughts and prayers I received from all over the world. This concert is for the fans,” Z said in a statement. “I am so honored and thrilled that The Revolution will join me in this celebration of my recovery. This will be an intimate show with music and stories.”
Officials from the American Heart Association will also hand out literature with information about heart disease, preventive measures and how to find medical care.
Ticket information is available at www.first-avenue.com.
Anne L. Taylor, MD, a professor of medicine at New York Presbyterian Hospital and vice dean of academic affairs at Columbia University’s College of Physicians and Surgeons, told WebMD magazine that it is critical to treat risk factors successfully to prevent heart failure and other heart disease.
But black Americans are less likely to visit a doctor for routine screenings and are less likely to be referred to specialists, Taylor said.
“African-Americans with heart failure are more likely to be taken care of in a primary care practice,” Taylor told WebMD, “even though the data would suggest that the best care – the care that decreases hospitalizations and improves mortality rates – happens in cardiologists’ offices.”