Doctor reveals why heart attacks are commonly seen in women | Health

A heart attack occurs when blood flow, which carries oxygen to the heart muscle, is reduced or obstructed due to severe blockage or narrowing of the arteries supplying the heart, and known signs of cardiac arrest can include chest pain, shortness of breath, break out in a cold sweat, nausea, upper body pain, or dizziness. Most heart patients, including men and women, would experience chest pain during a stroke, but health experts have revealed that in women, we see atypical heart attack symptoms, which can be shortness of breath, vomiting or nausea, and just sweating or pain that is not in the center of the chest, but may be on the left side or in the hands.

In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Dr. Bipeenchandra Bhamre, Consultant Cardiac Surgeon at Sir HN Reliance Foundation Hospital and Research Center in Mumbai, shared: “It is generally assumed that heart attacks and myocardial infarction are male problems. Are you aware that a large number of women also suffer from heart attacks? Woman tries to avoid being examined for the fact that “I’m a woman and I’m not going to have a heart attack”. Heart problems are not just limited to men. Now even women tend to get heart attacks and this has become a common occurrence.”

He highlighted that women tend to come with advanced disease mainly because they are unaware of heart problems and their prognosis is poor, leading to a high risk of mortality and morbidity. He said: “In modern society, women’s stress levels are more like they have to work in the office, while also taking care of their families – that’s double stress. While maintaining the balance between work and family, women suffer both physically and psychologically. Furthermore, the protective hormone in women, estrogen, disappears after menopause.”

He listed some reasons why heart attacks are commonly seen in women. These include:

· Several studies have confirmed that after menopause, women experience a similar risk of heart disease compared to men due to low levels of the female hormone estrogen during menopause.

· Also, factors such as race, increasing age and a family history of heart disease cannot be changed and invite a heart attack.

· Smoking can cause heart attacks or strokes in women as well as men.

· Hypertension can be another worrying risk factor. Yes, you heard right! It’s a silent disease and if not treated at the right time, it will make the heart work harder, harden the arteries (atherosclerosis) and increase the risk of heart attack, stroke and even kidney failure. Pregnancy can trigger high blood pressure and it goes away after giving birth. This is called pregnancy-induced hypertension. High cholesterol levels increase the risk of heart disease.

· Obesity is associated with heart disease, especially among women. Diabetes is more common in women who are overweight, less physically active and can lead to a heart attack.

· Many women tend to have a cardiac symptom. They try to ignore the symptoms for many reasons. mostly heart symptoms are burning sensation in upper abdomen, chest pain, left shoulder or back pain after walking. There will be dizziness, stomach pain and sweating. They may not have that typical chest pain symptom and may overlook the other symptoms, dismissing them as heartburn.

The bottom line is that many risk factors that contribute to heart attacks can be controlled. Quitting smoking, losing weight, exercising, controlling cholesterol and blood pressure, managing diabetes, and reducing stress can help men and women avoid heart attacks. A woman must remember to take care of herself as well along with her family.

Doctor reveals why heart attacks are commonly seen in women | Health

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