Heart Disease In Women
Women have some unique risk factors for certain diseases, so it is important to get regular medical care. Your primary care doctor can ensure you get the preventive care you need and recommend the right tests if you develop any symptoms or signs of a heart attack. It is especially important to let your healthcare provider know about any chest pain, shortness of breath, or other symptoms of heart problems.
A myocardial infarction, more commonly called a heart attack, occurs when the heart muscle is injured due to a lack of oxygen. In some cases, the lack of oxygen occurs because cholesterol, white blood cells, and fat build up in the coronary arteries. This buildup causes a blockage and makes it difficult for blood to nourish the heart muscle.
Although chest pain is a common symptom of a heart attack, many women experience symptoms unrelated to the chest. Some of the signs of a heart attack in women include sweating, dizziness, fatigue, upper back pain, shoulder pain, shortness of breath, nausea, lightheadedness, neck pain, and vomiting. These symptoms are often very subtle, especially if you have blockages in your small arteries instead of major arteries. Some women confuse these symptoms for panic attack symptoms.
If you have any of the risk factors for heart attack, it is important to get regular medical care. Depression tends to affect women’s heart health more than men’s, so tell your doctor if you are experiencing any symptoms of the disease. If you have high blood pressure, high triglycerides, high blood sugar, or a lot of fat around your abdomen, you may also have an elevated risk of having a heart attack. If you experience any of the signs of heart attack in women, seek emergency medical attention immediately.
About one in four American women die of heart disease, so you must be aware of the symptoms and risk factors. Many women develop the disease due to a blockage of the coronary arteries. Women also have a greater risk of developing stress-induced cardiomyopathy, also known as broken heart syndrome. This condition develops when emotional stress causes the heart muscle to fail. You can control some of your risk factors for heart disease, so talk to your doctor about the best way to reduce your risk.
Congestive Heart Failure
Heart failure occurs when the heart cannot pump as much blood as it should. The amount of pressure in the heart increases, and your other organs do not get the nutrients they need. Because blood moves through the heart more slowly, the extra pressure can cause the heart muscle to stiffen. The heart’s chambers may also stretch to accommodate the extra blood. Congestive heart failure is when fluid builds up in the limbs, lungs, and other areas of the body as a result of heart failure.
The symptoms of congestive heart failure include difficulty breathing, shortness of breath, water retention, fatigue, weakness, dizziness, irregular heartbeat, and cough. If you experience any of these signs of a heart attack, tell your doctor right away. The sooner you find out what is causing your symptoms, the sooner you can work with your doctor to find a treatment that works for you.
We use an evidence-based approach to helping you reduce the risk of heart disease, heart attack, and other heart problems. When you visit your practice, you will have access to information about lifestyle changes you can make to reduce your risk. Schedule an appointment with our online patient portal, or call us to discuss your healthcare needs.