Experts Discuss Women’s Heart Health on Recent Webinar
It’s important for women to be aware of factors that can lower or prevent the risk of heart disease.
In the past, studies had typically excluded women from heart disease research due to the false belief that their heart health was similar to men’s. But the truth is that women tend to have symptoms and risk factors that differ from those of men.
Experts spoke on this topic during a Schneps Media webinar, “Women’s Heart Health 101,” on Feb. 12. The panelists were Dr. Stacey E. Rosen, of Katz Institute for Women’s Health, and Britt Burner, Esq., of Burner Law Group, P.C.
“It’s something you’ve all seen, they call it the ‘Hollywood heart attack’. It’s a man—he clutches his chest, an ambulance comes and everyone in the emergency room is frantic,” Rosen said. “Well, a woman may get something different.”
Rosen, who is one of the leading experts in the field of cardiovascular disease in women’s health, noted that women may experience different symptoms of a heart attack than men will. Some of these symptoms include upper abdominal pain, fainting, indigestion and extreme fatigue.
According to Rosen, women will, on average, develop heart disease 10 years later than men. Women also have unique risk factors for heart disease that stem from pregnancy and menstrual-related causes. Adding to this, statistics show that fewer women survive their first heart attack when compared to men.
“It’s really been eye opening to me on how women should be treated different from men in the medical field, and what Katz is doing to get us there,” Burner said.
Burner, a charter member of the advisory council at Katz Institute for Women’s Health, made note that genetics can play a part in heart disease despite an individual being in good shape.
Women with a history of gestational diabetes, pregnancy induced hypertension and immune diseases such as lupus or rheumatoid arthritis can have higher risks for heart disease.
Although 90% of women have at least one risk factor for heart disease, 80% of these risk factors are preventable. Some preventable risk factors include cigarette smoking, vaping, poor dieting and lack of exercise.
Rosen suggested that more women should advocate for their own heart health by regularly checking in with their doctors in order to create a customized approach based on age, risk factors and other concerns.
Watch the replay of the webinar here: