Women at a Greater Risk of Heart Attack

by Dr. Enozia Vakil on  October 24, 2012 at 12:30 PM Health In Focus
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Myocardial infarction, commonly known as heart attack, is one of the most deadly cardiovascular diseases, claiming millions of lives worldwide, every year.
Women at a Greater Risk of Heart Attack
Women at a Greater Risk of Heart Attack

A recent study confirmed that women are twice as more likely to suffer intra-hospital mortality due to heart attacks than men. One in every 9 women develop cardiovascular disease after the age of 45, researchers say. Cardiovascular ailments particularly affect women going through menopause, and make them less likely to recover from the illness.

The assumption that only men are affected by cardiovascular disorders is purely a myth. Women in their pre-menopausal period do have a plus point that helps protect them from heart disorders. The hormone estrogen is known to be responsible for helping women protect the heart; however, on reaching menopause, the lack of estrogen makes women more susceptible to heart attacks. In India, heart disease kills twice as many women as all the cancers combined.

The major reason for women being affected by cardiovascular ailments is their lifestyle. Furthermore, women are more likely to overlook the symptoms of heart attacks like heartburn, sudden chest pains and breathing difficulties as minor issues. This is dangerous, considering the fact that women, having smaller arteries than men, show less severe symptoms when affected by a heart attack. Another reason why heart attacks often go undetected in women is due to their high tolerance of pain. Women tend to ignore symptoms, leading to a delay in diagnosis and therefore treatment.

Women in the menopausal stage need to be extra careful and watch out for symptoms, even if they are mild. Routine check-ups need to be done to diagnose the condition at an early stage.

Reference:

http://www.medpagetoday.com/Cardiology/MyocardialInfarction/35441

Source: Medindia

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