Navigation Links
Heart Disease Gender Gap Narrows
Date:10/26/2009

Middle-aged women have more heart attacks than in past, but are more likely to survive, studies show

MONDAY, Oct. 26 (HealthDay News) -- Hearts attacks have increased among middle-aged American women in the past two decades, but their chance of survival has improved, two new studies show.

"We found that men still have a higher prevalence than women, but what has happened is that the gap has narrowed," said Dr. Amytis Towfighi, assistant professor of clinical neurology at the University of Southern California, lead author of one of two reports in the Oct. 26 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine. "For women it has increased, for men it has decreased."

Her study used data from two national surveys conducted from 1988 to 1994 and 1999 to 2004. While 2.5 percent of the men and 0.7 percent of the women reported a history of heart attacks in the earlier survey, 2.2 percent of men and 1 percent of women reported heart attacks in the more recent survey.

The narrowing of the male-female difference is easily explained, Towfighi stated. "Very basically, the risk factors are being better controlled in men than in women."

In men, levels of "bad" LDL cholesterol remained the same between the two surveys, while levels of "good" HDL cholesterol improved. Blood pressure levels improved, and fewer men smoked.

The improvements for women were marginal, with LDL cholesterol levels about the same. The only risk factor that improved in women was HDL cholesterol. Diabetes and obesity increased in men and women, the study found.

"We don't know exactly what is going on in terms of risk factors being better controlled. Women aren't checked as often," Towfighi acknowledged.

Societal changes may play a role, she said.

With more women in the work force, she said, their rising rates of obesity and diabetes can be attributed to job demands that limit their ability to exercise and follow dietary rules.

It is no longer assumed that female hormones protect against heart disease, she said. Doctors are paying more attention to heart risk factors in women because "there is a red flag about women not being absolutely protected against heart disease in midlife, as we had thought, and we are aware that more effort must be made to reduce their risk," Towfighi said.

The second study used information from a different data bank listing death rate trends from 1994 to 2006. It found a marked reduction in hospital deaths from heart attacks in all patients, especially among women. For women under 55, the risk of dying dropped by 53 percent, which was the greatest improvement noted. The least reduction, 33 percent, was seen in men under 55.

A detailed examination of cardiac risk factors showed that "women experienced less worsening than men," said Dr. Viola Vaccarino, professor of medicine and director of the Emory Program in Cardiovascular Outcomes Research and Epidemiology, lead author of the report.

But changing attitudes about women and heart disease may also have had an effect, she said.

"Perhaps physicians are paying more attention to the detection and treatment of women with heart disease," Vaccarino said. "It could be the same thing happening in the general public, with women getting more knowledgeable about this."

"Basically, both studies show that there still is a gap between men and women," said Dr. Nieca Goldberg, clinical associate professor of medicine at NYU Langone Medical Center and a spokeswoman for the American Heart Association. "They both show the importance of continuing to pay attention to women's risk of cardiovascular disease and treatment of their heart attacks."

The studies offer some good news for women, Goldberg said. "I'd like to think that's because we have increased the awareness of women themselves. But these two important studies show the need to continue research about reducing women's risk of cardiovascular disease."

More information

To find out who is at risk for coronary artery disease, visit the U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.



SOURCES: Amytis Towfighi, M.D., assistant professor of clinical neurology, University of Southern California, Los Angeles; Viola Vaccarino, M.D., Ph.D., professor, medicine, director, Emory Program in Cardiovascular Outcomes Research and Epidemiology, Atlanta; Nieca Goldberg, M.D., clinical associate professor of medicine, NYU Langone Medical Center, New York City; Oct 26, 2009 Archives of Internal Medicine


'/>"/>
Copyright©2009 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Drug for cluster headaches may cause heart problems
2. Use of certain lipid measures not more effective in predicting coronary heart disease
3. Restricting Blood Flow May Help Heart Bypass Patients
4. Urban Smog Tough on Young Adults Hearts
5. Stanford study highlights cost-effective method of lowering heart disease risks
6. Vitamin Es lack of heart benefit linked to dosage
7. Drug That Lowers Resting Heart Rate Being Tested
8. Heart Attack Boosts Diabetes Risk
9. Embryonic Stem Cells Repair Human Heart
10. U of M study: Early treatment can reverse heart damage
11. Embryonic Human Stem Cells May Help Repair Heart Muscle, Lab Study Shows
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/24/2017)... Prior Lake MN (PRWEB) , ... February 24, ... ... the launch of its newly designed TaskMate Go. Core benefits and advantages built ... grain finish and a stylish, functional look and feel. Ability to gain the ...
(Date:2/24/2017)... ... February 24, 2017 , ... Dr. Ronald E. ... announced the appointment of Peter A. Bell, DO, MBA, HPF, FACOEP-dist., FACEP, as ... beginning April 10. Dr. Bell comes to Liberty from the Ohio University Heritage ...
(Date:2/24/2017)... , ... February 24, 2017 , ... The narrative in ... Erik Schanssema ’s true account of his paramedic experiences. Schanssema describes the tragedies ... and his attempts to overcome them. , Schanssema, initially unsure of the career ...
(Date:2/24/2017)... ... February 24, 2017 , ... Indiana Fiber Network (IFN) President and CEO ... year. Dyer started as the Chairman of the Management Committee when IFN was ... corporation including the recruitment of investor/owners and development of the business plan. He ...
(Date:2/23/2017)... Austin, TX (PRWEB) , ... February 23, 2017 ... ... has announced an official 2017 partnership with The Jensie Gran Fondo of Marin. ... UVA and UVB rays with Thinksport’s broad-spectrum, mineral-based sunscreen. , “We are thrilled ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/24/2017)...  This report analyzes the worldwide markets for Chiral ... Products: Intermediates, Analytical, and Others. The End Use ... Agrochemicals. The report provides separate comprehensive analytics for the ... , and Rest of World. Annual estimates and ... Also, a six-year historic analysis is provided for these ...
(Date:2/24/2017)... Research and Markets has announced the addition ... 2016" report to their offering. ... The latest research Urinary Incontinence Drugs Price ... in the global Urinary Incontinence market. The research answers the ... drugs marketed for Urinary Incontinence and their clinical attributes? How are ...
(Date:2/23/2017)... , Feb. 23, 2017  Cogentix Medical, Inc. (NASDAQ: ... markets innovative proprietary products for the urology market, will ... year ended December 31, 2016 before the market open ... Company will host a conference call and webcast to ... March 9, 2017 at 11:00 a.m. Eastern Time (10:00 ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: