SPECIAL | feature
Women can be at greater risk for heart disease than men.
Causes of heart disease can be different for women than men.
THE FOLLOWING CONDITIONS LEAD TO A GREATER RISK OF HEART DISEASE:
Cigarette smoking —Women have 3x higher risk of heart attack due to cigarette smoking compared to men Diabetes mellitus —Women living with diabetes are 3x more likely to die from heart disease compared to men
Certain pregnancy complications — ex. Premature birth, diabetes or hypertension during pregnancy, preeclampsia
Earlier menopause —Average age of menopause 50-52
COMMON CAUSES OF HEART DISEASE:
Polycystic ovary syndrome
• Coronary artery disease • Valvular heart disease • Arrhythmia (irregular heart beat) WOMEN ARE MORE LIKELY THAN MEN TO HAVE: • Spontaneous coronary artery dissection (SCAD) • Coronary vasospasm • Microvascular dysfunction (small-vessel disease) • Takotsubo (stress-induced) cardiomyopathy (disease of the heart muscle) • Peripartum cardiomyopathy (weakened heart during or after pregnancy) Some health providers may be less aware of the differences between women and men.
Systemic inflammatory and autoimmune disorders —ex. Rheumatoid arthritis, lupus
Garcia, M. et al. (2016). Circ Res, 118(8), 1273-1293. Yusuf, S. et al. (2004). Lancet, 364(9438): 937-52.
There is a lot we can all do to help reduce the risk . Heart disease is largely preventable .
Be active, keep moving
Eat a variety of healthy foods
Live free from commercial tobacco and vaping
Get regular check ups (test for blood sugars, blood pressure and cholesterol)
Hu, F. B., et al (2000). New England Journal of Medicine, 343(8), 530-537 Yusuf, S. et al (2004). Lancet, 364(9438):937-52
To take care of others, you need to first take care of yourself . Start the conversation with the women in your life.
QUESTIONS? Visit WearRedCanada.ca or your healthcare provider. WearRedCanada.ca | #HerHeartMatters | @CWHHAlliance
July–August 2022 | THE P.E.O. RECORD
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