The five-county region of Luzerne, Lackawanna, Columbia, Sullivan and Wyoming counties has the highest incidence of heart disease death in Pennsylvania, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
These counties are the only ones in the state falling into the CDC’s most distressing category, showing 455 to 651 of every 100,000 deaths in people over age 35 are a direct result of heart disease.
Dr. Thomas Isaacson, chief of cardiology at Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center’s Richard and Marion Pearsall Heart Hospital in Plains Township, said this area has a high rate of heart disease due to a number of risk factors here, especially smoking.
“We know smoking has a big impact on this,” Isaacson said. “We have a high prevalence of smoking in our communities.