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Stopping heart problems in girls

Stopping heart problems in girls


Dr. Kathy Glatter (1) (1)Coronary heart illness is the main reason behind dying in the USA, and it impacts girls in another way than males. Under, Kathy Glatter, MD, a heart specialist and electrophysiologist with Dignity Health Woodland Clinic, shares the varieties of coronary heart illnesses that generally have an effect on girls, the danger elements to be careful for, and the steps you possibly can take to decrease your danger.

Frequent coronary heart illnesses affecting girls

In line with the CDC, coronary artery illness, or CAD, is the commonest type of coronary heart illness impacting girls. CAD is attributable to plaque buildup, which happens when extra ldl cholesterol accumulates within the artery partitions which provide blood to the center. If left untreated, CAD can result in a coronary heart assault.

Coronary heart failure is one other critical situation that impacts girls greater than males and happens when the center can’t pump sufficient blood and oxygen to help the remainder of the physique. One other frequent illness of the center that may have an effect on girls is coronary heart arrhythmia, which occurs when the center beats too slowly, too shortly, or in an irregular method. Some of the frequent types of arrhythmias is atrial fibrillation (AFib or AF), which is an irregular heartbeat. When left untreated, sufferers with AFib have a tremendously elevated danger of a stroke.

Danger elements

Hypertension, generally often called hypertension, poses a big danger for coronary heart illness, significantly amongst girls. It’s essential to acknowledge that girls with hypertension are sometimes underdiagnosed and undertreated. This disparity is especially pronounced for Black girls. Untreated hypertension in girls contributes to stroke, coronary heart assault, kidney failure, congestive coronary heart failure, and doubtlessly dementia.

“A number of different medical circumstances and way of life habits can put girls at larger danger of coronary heart illness,” says Dr. Glatter. “These can embrace excessive LDL ldl cholesterol, smoking, diabetes, overconsumption of alcohol, a sedentary way of life, and having extra weight.”

After menopause, girls are additionally at a better danger of growing heart problems because of a lower in estrogen, a hormone that helps shield the center. 

Coronary heart assault signs may be totally different in girls

“The commonest signal of a coronary heart assault in each women and men is chest ache or strain. Nonetheless for some girls, no chest ache is current however as a substitute they are going to expertise profound fatigue, nausea, flu-like signs, and/or shortness of breath,” says Dr. Glatter. “Girls usually tend to decrease or ignore their signs, resulting in a later analysis of coronary heart illness.”

Chest ache can really feel like a strain or ache and may unfold to the left shoulder and journey down the arm, elbow, wrist and/or hand. Dr. Glatter explains that the next signs may be extra delicate and generally go unnoticed:

  • Ache within the jaw, neck or again
  • Shortness of breath
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Profuse sweating
  • Dizziness or lightheadedness
  • Lack of consciousness
  • Anxiousness or a way of impending doom

If you’re experiencing signs of a coronary heart assault, particularly in the event that they last more than a couple of minutes, name 9-1-1 instantly.


Way of life adjustments and wholesome habits play a key function in stopping coronary heart illness and cardiac occasions. It’s essential to take care of a nutritious eating regimen excessive in fiber and low in saturated fat, trans fats, and ldl cholesterol, which trigger plaque buildup in arteries. You also needs to attempt to keep away from extra sodium and sugar in your eating regimen. In line with the CDC, limiting alcohol consumption also can decrease the danger of growing coronary heart illness in girls, who ought to devour not more than 1 alcoholic drink per day. 

In line with Dr. Glatter, common bodily exercise and sustaining a wholesome weight are additionally beneficial for avoiding coronary heart illness and different cardiovascular dangers in girls. 

Key takeaways

As a result of coronary heart circumstances can develop with restricted or no signs, girls who’ve a number of of those danger elements ought to you should definitely focus on their danger with their physician. In search of early medical consideration can assist stop coronary heart illness and decrease your danger of a cardiovascular occasion.

If you’re, or assume it’s possible you’ll be in danger for growing coronary heart illness, schedule an appointment along with your main care doctor. Our “Find a Doctor” instrument can assist you discover a Dignity Well being doctor close to you.

Meet Kathy Glatter, MD



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