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Heart disease is no longer considered a "man's disease." Women can suffer the same devastating effects of heart disease as men, but may experience signs and symptoms of a heart attack that vary from those of a man's. Diagnosis and treatment can also be very different between genders. It is important for women to know how heart disease can affect their health and how the warning signs of a heart attack can be different from a man's.
Typical Heart Attack Warning Signs
To be proactive in their own heart health, women should know the warning signs of Heart Disease. According to the CDC, about 47% of sudden cardiac deaths occur outside a hospital, suggesting that many people with heart disease don't act on early warning signs.
Women Specific Warning Signs
While the most common heart attack warning sign for men is chest pain or discomfort, women are more likely to experience some of the other warning signs, particularly:
Many of the above signs are mistakenly attributed to stress.
Effects on Women
Women are far more likely to die from a heart attack than men. When compared to men, women are less likely to leave the hospital alive following their first heart attack and even fewer survive the first year following their heart attack. Also, women are also more likely than men to suffer a recurrent heart attack and eventually enter into heart failure.
Important Facts about Women and Cardiovascular Disease
(American Heart Association, Heart Disease and Stroke Statistics- 2007 Update)
The American Heart Association lists 7 easy steps to living a heart healthy lifestyle.
Changing your diet is one of the most important aspects in creating a heart healthy lifestyle. Visit the Go Red for Women Campaign's website for some delicious heart healthy recipes and lifestyle tips.
Be sure talk your doctor before making any major lifestyle changes.
Last Updated: 6/1/2011