Death Rate in Women vs Men After a Heart Attack
Death Rate in Women vs Men After a Heart Attack

Before and during this deadly coronavirus ( COVID-19 ) pandemic, cardiovascular diseases, and heart disease remains the leading cause of death in the United States. According to new reports, women are particularly unsafe. As published in an article on USA Today on 30/11/2020.

The ratio of heart failure in women

According to a research report published in the AMA (American Heart Association) journal Circulation on Monday. The researchers found that women face 20% more risk than men in developing heart failure in just five years after a severe heart attack.

The researchers of the Canadian VIGOUR Center collected and analyzed the data of 45000 patients at the University of Alberta. These patients were hospitalized for their first heart attack from 2002 to 2016 in Canada and Alberta.

Researchers followed the patients for more than 6 years and 30% of them were women.

Types of Heart Attack in women

There are many kinds of heart attacks but in this research, they have  focused on two types of heart attacks, which are:

  1. STMI (segment elevation myocardial infarction) is a more dangerous, severe, and life-threatening heart attack condition 
  2. Non-STMI is the most common heart attack in patients 

Both types of heart attack are dangerous because the death rate for both types during hospitalization and after, in women is higher than in men.

Deaths due to heart failure remained higher for both types of heart attacks in women as compared to men.

Less aggressive care

According to Dr. Leslie Cho. who is working at Heart, Vascular and Thoracic Institute at the Cleveland Clinic as a cardiologist said. We all know that women have less aggressive care, unfortunately. We are trying to give our best, but the gap still exists.

This study has proved an unfortunate finding that a high rate of women dying because of a heart attack

How to overcome disparities 

According to Dr. Eugenia Gianos, director of Lenox Hill Hospital, based in New York City. we can overcome disparities in deaths because of heart failure and disease by taking some steps such as

  • Both parties ( patients and doctors ) should do their part from prevention to diagnosis to rehabilitation.
  • Women should take the necessary steps to present heart problems because they are less likely to take care of themselves.
  • Women should see the doctor to check cholesterol, glucose levels, and blood pressure regularly.
  • Women should take time for heart-healthy exercises. Women are responsible for family care and they put the health of their family before their own. 
  • Clinicians should look for early risk factors of cardio diseases, as most women do not have symptoms of heart disease in the early stages.

Age for Heart Attack in women

According to a study by AHA, women were more likely to get their first attack on average 10 years older age than men, which was 72 years in women and 61 years of age in men.

The high estrogen levels in older women protect them by increasing blood pressure, heart flexibility, the flexibility of blood vessels, and arteries. This estrogen wane in older women is because of menopause, which gives them protective cardiovascular benefits. The American Academy of Cardiology says :

Solutions to prevent heart failure in older women

According to Dr. Gianos, doctors and clinicians often wait until a woman become in menopause to treat risk factors for cardiovascular disease.

This ratio gap also exists when diagnosing a heart attack condition – women are slow to seek care during a heart attack compared to men, mistaking it for acid reflux, which is a less threatening condition.

Common Heart Attack Symptoms in Women

The most common heart attack symptom in women is chest pain, according to AHA. There could be other symptoms such as.

  • Nausea
  • Shortness of breath
  • Vomiting
  • Jaw pain
  • Back pain 

Some doctors and clinicians could be at fault for misdiagnosing the symptoms. Women are less frequently visit a hospital or a cardiovascular specialist or cardiologist as compared to men. Which is about 72% versus 84%.


 Gianos exclaimed, a woman coming to the hospital may not fit the profile of a man clutching his chest which the doctors and physicians have learned about in medical school.