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Arterial vascular disease underdiagnosed, undertreated in older US women
Date:11/21/2007

Though arterial vascular disease is widespread and often deadly among older American women, doctors too often fail to spot and treat it, according to a new report by a team of vascular surgeons from the Columbia University Medical Center and Weill Cornell Medical College campuses of NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital.

Much of that is due to the fact that for years, cardiovascular research has focused almost exclusively on males, so in many cases we simply dont understand the true prevalence or level of threat women face from vascular disease, says the study co-author, Dr. Ageliki G. Vouyouka, assistant professor of surgery in the Department of Vascular Surgery at Weill Cornell Medical College, and a vascular surgeon at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital. Obviously, we need more trials focused on the vulnerability of women to these crippling and even lethal conditions.

She and co-author Dr. K. Craig Kentthe Greenberg-Starr Professor of Surgery at Weill Cornell Medical College, professor of surgery at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, and chief of vascular surgery at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospitalpublished their review, titled Arterial Vascular Disease in Women, in a recent issue of the Journal of Vascular Surgery.

Arterial vascular disease is an umbrella term for diseases involving the gradual closure of arteries throughout the body, including carotid stenosis (blockage of the arteries that supply blood to the brain), aortic aneurysmal disease (plaque and blockages in the aortic artery leading from the heart to the lower body), and lower-extremity arterial occlusive disease, which involves poor blood flow within the legs.

For decades, these forms of vascular disease were thought primarily as mens diseases.

Thats because the risk of vascular trouble increases greatly for women after menopause, Dr. Kent explains. In years past when lifespans were shorter, women simply didnt live long enough to develop seriou
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Contact: Belinda Mager
bem9048@nyp.org
212-305-5587
New York- Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center
Source:Eurekalert

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