Women often don't have the same kind of chest pains that men generally experience during a heart attack. They may also have a range of other symptoms, not all of them easy for the typical sufferer to identify and so in many cases, they tend to just ignore the warning signs.
In hopes of shortening women's time to treatment, Pamela Stewart Fahs, professor and Decker Chair in Rural Nursing at Binghamton University's Decker School of Nursing, is collaborating with Melanie Kalman, associate professor and director of research, and Margaret Wells, assistant professor, in the College of Nursing at SUNY Upstate Medical University, on a project called "Matters of â€ŠYour Heart." The goal is to develop an effective program to educate women about heart attack symptoms and also to teach about the early warning signs that a heart attack might be on the way.
Stewart Fahs, Kalman and Wells conducted the first phase of their project under an intramural research grant from SUNY Upstate. Their first task was to develop a questionnaire to measure a woman's knowledge of heart attack symptoms and warning signs. They then created a pilot version of an educational presentation.