Dr. Annabelle Volgman, medical director of the Rush Heart Center for Women in Chicago, said there's still a long way to go in making sure women understand their heart disease risk.
"Fifty-four percent of women know about the risk, but that means 46 percent of women still don't know it's the No. 1 killer," Volgman said. "And although there's been a decline in death rates from heart disease in women, we are seeing more young women 35 to 54 years old having strokes."
A newly approved drug, Pradaxa (dabigatran) is a good alternative to Coumadin (warfarin) for treating atrial fibrillation.
"I find women are more reluctant than men to take drugs. So I always say, "It's Prada with a 'xa,'" Volgman said.
The American Heart Association has more on preventing heart disease in women.
SOURCES: Lori Mosca, M.D., M.P.H., Ph.D., chair, guidelines writing committee, and director, preventive cardiology, New York-Presbyterian Hospital, New York City; Annabelle Volgman, M.D., medical director, Rush Heart Center for Women, Chicago; Feb. 15, 2011, Circulation, online
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