Are women dying needlessly from heart issues?

Pinterest LinkedIn Tumblr +


The fact that heart disease is less common in women than in men is often misinterpreted as a sign that women are free of heart disease. A published 2020 report analyzing the National Family Health Survey shows an overall prevalence of undiagnosed high blood pressure in 18.69% of women aged 15-49 in India. It was 17.09% in rural areas as against 21.73% in urban areas.

Dr. P. Vinod Kumar MD, DM, Senior Consultant Cardiologist and Clinical Lead, Department of Cardiology, Prashant Superspeciality Hospital, Kolathur feels that most of the blame for this misconception lies with the women themselves. “I have seen in many patients and their caregivers, even women with multiple heart risk factors that reduce their symptoms which is clearly related to heart disease. In my practice, the incidence of heart attack in women is 10% of the total cases and they usually appear much later and there is also a tendency to self-medicate, presumably as a gastric symptom. This situation can only be reversed by creating awareness about the early detection of symptoms related to heart disease and the need to periodically examine it to treat risk factors that require primarily self-care and self-care. ”

Dr. Ganesh Kumar, Head of the Department of Cardiology, Senior Consultant Interventional Cardiologist, Dr. LH Hiranandani Hospital, Mumbai, adds, It is more common in large joint families and even in affluent classes where the decision maker is the head of the joint family. Another reason I feel is that the symptoms of heart disease in women may not be classic chest pain (angina), shortness of breath, etc., but they have more common and non-specific symptoms and these symptoms are not easily reduced. Experienced doctor. One needs to have a high index of suspicion for Cardiovascular Disease (CVD) among women and appropriate risk profiling to rule out CVD. ”

What makes women prone to heart problems?

It is an amazing fact that many women die of heart disease every year yet the causes of heart disease and related risks in women are often overlooked. Dr. Naveen Bhamri, Director and HOD – Interventional Cardiology, Max Super Specialty Hospital, Shalimar Bug explained the possible causes. “High cholesterol, blood pressure and obesity are major concerns for CVD but stress, lack of physical activity and low levels of estrogen after menopause are other major factors that make women more prone to CVD. Interestingly, these factors are ignored. Yes and take the back seat because women are busy taking care of the health of the rest of the family. Also, women tend to develop symptoms later in life because they are often protected by high levels of estrogen until menopause. Now is the right time to prioritize women’s heart health. ”

HighBpFotoJet (25)

Women with high blood pressure and / or high blood sugar during pregnancy are more likely to develop high blood pressure and diabetes mellitus later in life than women with abnormal pregnancies. Such women are more prone to heart disease later in life. In most of these cases, blood pressure and blood sugar return to normal after delivery. So they don’t always come back for regular check-ups. These women need to be closely monitored at least once a year to identify the onset of these risk factors at an early stage, said Dr. Sarita Sekhar, Associate Professor, Interventional Cardiologist, Amrita Hospital, Kochi.

Most women in urban areas, though conscious, are multitasking, taking care of their careers and families in the same way that they have forgotten to take care of themselves. “As a result, we will miss the opportunity to diagnose these risk factors early enough to avoid complications, such as high blood pressure or high blood sugar,” Dr Sarita added.

Symptoms of cardiovascular disease that should be seen for women

In women as well as men, heart disease can cause chest pain, discomfort with or without radiation to the left arm from the lower jaw to the navel. Normal chest pain due to blockage of blood vessels in the heart increases with exertion and is relieved through rest. But atypical presentation is common in women. Unusual presentations include blurred chest discomfort, discomfort in the shoulder blades, excessive fatigue, shortness of breath, and so on. Whenever a woman presents any one of these symptoms to a physician, it is the physician’s responsibility to evaluate the various risk factors already mentioned and determine which extended assessment the patient needs.

Health mistakes that make women at risk of heart disease

Shivani Kandwal, Dietitian and Nutritionist, founder of Nutrivibus, explains the most common mistakes.

Not paying attention to nutrition
Eating healthy is one of the most important things you can do to keep your body healthy. Eating unhealthily can also lead to weight gain which can increase the risk of heart disease. Choose foods from each food group, including fruits and vegetables, whole grains, nuts and legumes, lean sources of protein. At the same time, you should avoid foods high in salt, added sugars and trans fats.

Smoking does nothing good for your health, it only accelerates the build up of cholesterol in the walls, increases the risk of heart attack and stroke, and lowers HDL which is good cholesterol. So it is better to give up a habit that does you no good.

Sedentary lifestyle
Let me clear out loud, women need to do real exercise, not just walk around the house and run errands. Physical activity is important in preventing heart disease. So make sure you take at least 30 minutes to do any type of exercise every day.

We all have stress in our lives but what we can do is manage it in a thoughtful way, women need to prioritize their mental health and increase my time to reduce stress and optimize their heart health.

Not doing regular health checks
Most women do not know about their heart condition until they receive an emergency medical treatment. Regular health check-ups are very important for proper diagnosis and timely treatment of the underlying disease.




About Author

Leave A Reply