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One in 14 men having a heart attack drive themselves to hospital

d to the hospital by their family doctor in an average of five hours from the onset of initial symptoms.

  • People who referred themselves took an average of 1.7 hours from experiencing initial symptoms to arriving at the casualty department.
  • Only 63 per cent of women and 60 per cent of men travelled by ambulance. Many said they were too embarrassed to go in an ambulance or that they should be used for more urgent cases.
  • Seven per cent of men and one per cent of women drove themselves to the hospital and a further four per cent of men and three per cent of women used public transport. 33 per cent of women and 29 per cent of men were driven to the hospital.
  • "It is essential that people are warned of the dangers of driving when they are obviously unwell and encouraged to call an ambulance immediately if they suspect they are having a heart attack" concludes Dr O'Donnell.

    "And it's also time to challenge the image of the typical male heart attack victim.

    "We are particularly concerned that women face much longer delays, both in the time it takes them to get to the hospital and in receiving treatment and being admitted when they arrive.

    "Women need to be much more aware of the risks they face from heart attacks and the importance of seeking prompt treatment."

    The team's previous paper, published in the Journal of Advanced Nursing in September 2005, also identified the need for greater awareness by healthcare staff of the risks women face.

    It reported that it took 54 minutes longer for women to be admitted to coronary care units than men. Women also waited longer to be assessed and treated with aspirin and to receive reperfusion therapy, which restores blood flow to the heart.

    Approximately 120 nurses working across the six coronary care units in Dublin, Southern Ireland, took part in the study, completing a 25-item questionnaire for each patient adm
    '"/>

    Source:Blackwell Publishing Ltd.


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