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The growing plaques may block the delivery of nutrients to the artery walls, causing them to lose their elasticity. This in turn may lead to high blood pressure, which also increases the risk of coronary heart disease. …show more content…
If you are black or Asian you are more at risk of heart disease, although different underlying risk factors are at play for each group. If you are Asian you have a higher risk of developing diabetes, which is a risk factor for heart disease. If you are black you are more at risk of high blood pressure, a separate risk factor for heart disease.

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If you have diabetes you are three times more like to develop coronary heart disease. You are also more likely to have silent ischemia because diabetes can affect the nerves which send pain messages.Sex And Heart Attack Mortality Rates Essay

The build up of cholesterol is a major contributor to atherosclerosis which in turn is a major cause of heart disease. Cholesterol is a waxy, fatty substance made by your liver. It is also present in some foods such as animal fats, eggs and shellfish. Your body needs some cholesterol to produce hormones, to produce the bile needed to digest fat. Cholesterol travels around your bloodstream in special proteins called lipoproteins. There are two types of lipoproteins. Low density lipoproteins or LDL also known as ‘bad cholesterol’ which carries cholesterol to your body’s cells. High density lipoproteins or HDL also known as ‘good cholesterol’ which helps clear excess cholesterol

Cardiovascular disease continues to be the leading cause of death among women in the United States, accounting for ≈1 of every 3 female deaths. Sex-specific data focused on cardiovascular disease have been increasing steadily, yet is not routinely collected nor translated into practice. This comprehensive review focuses on novel and unique aspects of cardiovascular health in women and sex differences as they relate to clinical practice in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of cardiovascular disease. This review also provides current approaches to the evaluation and treatment of acute coronary syndromes that are more prevalent in women, including myocardial infarction associated with nonobstructive coronary arteries, spontaneous coronary artery dissection, and stress-induced cardiomyopathy (Takotsubo Syndrome). Other cardiovascular disease entities with higher prevalence or unique considerations in women, such as heart failure with preserved ejection fraction, peripheral arterial disease, and abdominal aortic aneurysms, are also briefly reviewed. Finally, recommendations for cardiac rehabilitation are addressed.Sex And Heart Attack Mortality Rates Essay

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) remains the leading cause of death in women and, according to the most recently released United States statistics, accounted for 398 086 female deaths in 2013.1 For the past 3 decades, dramatic declines in heart disease mortality for both men and women have been observed, especially in the >65 years age group. However, recent data suggest stagnation in the improvements in incidence and mortality of coronary heart disease, specifically among younger women (<55 years).2 It is imperative that we understand the mechanisms that contribute to worsening risk factor profiles in young women to reduce future atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD) morbidity and mortality. Increased recognition of the prevalence of traditional ASCVD risk factors, and their differential impact in women, as well as emerging, nontraditional risk factors unique to or more common in women, contribute to new understanding of mechanisms leading to these worsening outcomes for women (Figure 1). Finally, diagnosis of acute coronary syndromes (ACS) is often challenging in women, especially young women, and it is important to recognize differences in the signs and symptoms at presentation to improve patient management and outcomes.Sex And Heart Attack Mortality Rates Essay

Figure 1.
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Figure 1. Traditional and nontraditional atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD) risk factors in women. Increasing among women and more impactful traditional ASCVD risk factors include diabetes mellitus, hypertension, dyslipidemia, smoking, obesity, and physical inactivity. Emerging, nontraditional ASCVD risk factors include preterm delivery, hypertensive pregnancy disorders, gestational diabetes mellitus, breast cancer treatments, autoimmune diseases, and depression.

Awareness of CVD as the primary cause of mortality in women has been slowly increasing. In 1997, only 30% of American women surveyed were aware that CVD was the leading cause of death in women; this increased to 54% in 2009 and has subsequently plateaued when last surveyed in 2012.3 Women are less likely to receive preventive treatment or guidance, such as lipid-lowering therapy, aspirin (ASA), and therapeutic lifestyle changes, than are men at similar ASCVD risk.4,5 When medications are prescribed, treatment is less likely to be aggressive or to achieve optimal effects, for example, women with hypertension are less likely to have their blood pressure (BP) at goal, and hyperlipidemic women, especially those with coexisting diabetes mellitus (DM), are less likely to be treated with statins to lower low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol.6–8 Also, cardiac rehabilitation (CR) is underused,9–11 with women being 55% less likely to participate in CR than men,9 the reasons for which are multifactorial, but partly as a result of lack of referral by their treating physician.Sex And Heart Attack Mortality Rates Essay

Coronary artery disease (CAD) can be defined as vascular disease limited to the epicardial coronary arteries and should not be confused with ischemic heart disease (IHD), which includes ischemic disease originating in the coronary arteries, the microcirculation, or from an imbalance in myocardial oxygen supply and demand. Particularly in women, use of the terminology IHD has advantages over CAD because of the lower prevalence of anatomically obstructive CAD, yet greater rates of myocardial ischemia and associated mortality in females, compared with similarly aged males.13–17 The Women’s Ischemia Syndrome Evaluation (WISE) and other related studies have implicated abnormal coronary reactivity,18 microvascular dysfunction,19 and plaque erosion/distal microembolization20,21 as causative to female-specific IHD pathophysiology. Women with IHD have a persistent suboptimal treatment pattern, higher mortality, and poorer CVD outcomes compared with men.22–25 In an environment where cardiologists have traditionally been trained to equate IHD with angiographically defined obstructive CAD, failure to recognize those unique aspects of IHD in women has contributed to less aggressive lifestyle and medical preventive interventions in women relative to men and may contribute to the observed sex-based mortality gap. Thus, a paradigm shift beyond solely an anatomic description of obstructive CAD is needed to translate into earlier IHD risk detection and treatment for women.Sex And Heart Attack Mortality Rates Essay

Biological variances among women and men are called sex differences and are frequently reproducible in animal models. Sex differences in the cardiovascular system are as a result of differences in gene expression from the sex chromosomes, which may be further modified by sex differences in hormones, resulting in sex-unique gene expression and function. These differences result in variations in prevalence and presentation of cardiovascular conditions, including those associated with autonomic regulation, hypertension, DM, and vascular and cardiac remodeling. In contrast, gender differences are unique to the human and arise from sociocultural practices (behaviors, environment, lifestyle, nutrition). To facilitate quality improvement in sex- and gender-specific care, this review will examine the latest clinical perspectives on CVD in women, focusing on novel and unique aspects of cardiovascular health in women and sex and gender differences as they relate to clinical practice in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of CVD. This review will also provide current approaches to the evaluation and treatment of ACS and other CVD entities that have greater prevalence or unique considerations in women.Sex And Heart Attack Mortality Rates Essay

Heart disease is a leading cause of death, but it’s not inevitable. While you can’t change some risk factors — such as family history, sex or age — there are plenty of ways you can reduce your risk of heart disease.

Get started with these seven tips for boosting your heart health:

1. Don’t smoke or use tobacco

One of the best things you can do for your heart is to stop smoking or using smokeless tobacco. Even if you’re not a smoker, be sure to avoid secondhand smoke.

Chemicals in tobacco can damage your heart and blood vessels. Cigarette smoke reduces the oxygen in your blood, which increases your blood pressure and heart rate because your heart has to work harder to supply enough oxygen to your body and brain.Sex And Heart Attack Mortality Rates Essay

There’s good news though. Your risk of heart disease starts to drop in as little as a day after quitting. After a year without cigarettes, your risk of heart disease drops to about half that of a smoker. No matter how long or how much you smoked, you’ll start reaping rewards as soon as you quit.

2. Get moving: Aim for at least 30 to 60 minutes of activity daily

Regular, daily physical activity can lower your risk of heart disease. Physical activity helps you control your weight and reduce your chances of developing other conditions that may put a strain on your heart, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol and type 2 diabetes.Sex And Heart Attack Mortality Rates Essay

If you haven’t been active for a while, you may need to slowly work your way up to these goals, but in general, you should aim for at least:

  • 150 minutes a week of moderate aerobic exercise, such as walking at a brisk pace
  • 75 minutes a week of vigorous aerobic activity, such as running
  • Two or more strength training sessions a week

Even shorter bouts of activity offer heart benefits, so if you can’t meet those guidelines, don’t give up. Just five minutes of moving can help, and activities such as gardening, housekeeping, taking the stairs and walking the dog all count toward your total. You don’t have to exercise strenuously to achieve benefits, but you can see bigger benefits by increasing the intensity, duration and frequency of your workouts.

3. Eat a heart-healthy diet

A healthy diet can help protect your heart, improve your blood pressure and cholesterol, and reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes. A heart-healthy eating plan includes:Sex And Heart Attack Mortality Rates Essay

  • Vegetables and fruits
  • Beans or other legumes
  • Lean meats and fish
  • Low-fat or fat-free dairy foods
  • Whole grains
  • Healthy fats, such as olive oil

Two examples of heart-healthy food plans include the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) eating plan and the Mediterranean diet.

Limit intake of the following:

  • Salt
  • Sugar
  • Processed carbohydrates
  • Alcohol
  • Saturated fat (found in red meat and full-fat dairy products) and trans fat (found in fried fast food, chips, baked goods)

4. Maintain a healthy weight

Being overweight — especially around your middle — increases your risk of heart disease. Excess weight can lead to conditions that increase your chances of developing heart disease — including high blood pressure, high cholesterol and type 2 diabetes.Sex And Heart Attack Mortality Rates Essay

One way to see if your weight is healthy is to calculate your body mass index (BMI), which uses your height and weight to determine whether you have a healthy or unhealthy percentage of body fat. A BMI of 25 or higher is considered overweight and is generally associated with higher cholesterol, higher blood pressure, and an increased risk of heart disease and stroke.

Waist circumference also can be a useful tool to measure how much abdominal fat you have. Your risk of heart disease is higher if your waist measurement is greater than:

  • 40 inches (101.6 centimeters, or cm) for men
  • 35 inches (88.9 cm) for women

Even a small weight loss can be beneficial. Reducing your weight by just 3% to 5% can help decrease certain fats in your blood (triglycerides), lower your blood sugar (glucose) and reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes. Losing even more helps lower your blood pressure and blood cholesterol level.Sex And Heart Attack Mortality Rates Essay

5. Get good quality sleep

A lack of sleep can do more than leave you yawning; it can harm your health. People who don’t get enough sleep have a higher risk of obesity, high blood pressure, heart attack, diabetes and depression.

Most adults need at least seven hours of sleep each night. Make sleep a priority in your life. Set a sleep schedule and stick to it by going to bed and waking up at the same times each day. Keep your bedroom dark and quiet, so it’s easier to sleep.

If you feel like you’ve been getting enough sleep but you’re still tired throughout the day, ask your doctor if you need to be evaluated for obstructive sleep apnea, a condition that can increase your risk of heart disease. Signs of obstructive sleep apnea include loud snoring, stopping breathing for short times during sleep and waking up gasping for air. Treatments for obstructive sleep apnea may include losing weight if you’re overweight or using a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) device that keeps your airway open while you sleep.

6. Manage stress

Some people cope with stress in unhealthy ways — such as overeating, drinking or smoking. Finding alternative ways to manage stress — such as physical activity, relaxation exercises or meditation — can help improve your health.Sex And Heart Attack Mortality Rates Essay

7. Get regular health screenings

High blood pressure and high cholesterol can damage your heart and blood vessels. But without testing for them, you probably won’t know whether you have these conditions. Regular screening can tell you what your numbers are and whether you need to take action.

  • Blood pressure. Regular blood pressure screenings usually start in childhood. Starting at age 18, your blood pressure should be measured at least once every two years to screen for high blood pressure as a risk factor for heart disease and stroke.

    If you’re between 18 and 39 and have risk factors for high blood pressure, you’ll likely be screened once a year. People age 40 and older also are given a blood pressure test annually.

  • Cholesterol levels. Adults generally have their cholesterol measured at least once every four to six years. Cholesterol screening usually starts at age 20, though earlier testing may be recommended if you have other risk factors, such as a family history of early-onset heart disease.Sex And Heart Attack Mortality Rates Essay
  • Type 2 diabetes screening. Diabetes is a risk factor for heart disease. If you have risk factors for diabetes, such as being overweight or having a family history of diabetes, your doctor may recommend early screening. If your weight is normal and you don’t have other risk factors for type 2 diabetes, screening is recommended beginning at age 45, with retesting every three years.

If you have a condition such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure or diabetes, your doctor may prescribe medications and recommend lifestyle changes. Make sure to take your medications as your doctor prescribes and follow a healthy-lifestyle plan. Sex And Heart Attack Mortality Rates Essay

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