Heart disease is a monster killer in this country. So much so that every single minute, a woman dies from heart disease somewhere in the United States. Those numbers are alarming and outrageous. Especially considering there are many preventative measures that can be taken to thwart this terrible and deadly disease. As the number one killer of women, one in three deaths per year are caused by heart disease.
Women, due to their biological makeup, experience a very unique set of circumstances with this disease compared to men. There are specific risk factors that women generally suffer from at a greater rate. Things like gestational diabetes, preeclampsia, migraine headaches, early onset menopause and autoimmune conditions. Despite it being the leading cause of death amongst women, so many still aren’t aware of how pervasive and ubiquitous it is. Dr. Holly Andersen and Jennifer Haythe are providing additional facts about the disease they hope will shed necessary light on it.
Leading Cause Of Death Among Women
Women are at a greater risk of developing heart disease than men. Over 45 percent of women are currently not aware that it is the leading cause of death amongst women in the U.S. Women, who often experience a myriad of symptoms that they may relate to stress, are less likely to call 911 when they are experiencing heart attack symptoms. Another aspect that confuses some is that the symptoms women experience when suffering from a heart attack are completely different than what men experience.
For instance, over 40 percent of women say they didn’t even experience chest pain when they had a heart attack. Instead they experienced nausea, palpitations, shortness of breath, jaw discomfort and incredible fatigue. Heart health is also rarely assessed in younger women. While over 70 percent of women do get annual checkups, less than 40 percent have their heart health accessed.
The heart is typically something that younger women don’t even think about as they assume heart attacks and heart disease only affect those over a certain age. Depending on lifestyle choices, hereditary markers, and stress levels, heart disease can become an issue much earlier than they may think.
During pregnancy, women suffer from hypertension more often than any other acquired medical condition. Congenital heart disease is a preexisting condition that is the most common. Many women don’t get the same type of care, treatment or medicine in the aftermath of a heart attack. This lessens likelihood of survival as every single second counts during a heart attack. Women are also less likely to be referred to a cardiovascular health rehabilitation facility after a heart attack.
Heart Disease Statistics
The information and statistics are staggering. Heart disease is a major issue in this country and so many aren’t even aware of its insane prevalence. Just last year, the heart disease death rates increased for the first time since 1993. The rates of death in young women who suffer from heart disease have been increasing since 2000.
One aspect that we must account for is the decline in healthy dietary choices many make. Bad cholesterol readings are through the roof as diets aren’t as healthful and heart healthy as they could be. This is why it’s imperative to understand the differences between bad and good cholesterol. Heart disease will only become more deadly and debilitating if we don’t have the information to combat it.