Women Face Distinct Heart & Brain Risks

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-23-2009
Women Face Distinct Heart & Brain Risks
3
Wed, 05-12-2010 - 8:12pm
Women are complicated, and our symptoms of heart attack and stroke are no different. About a third of women who have had heart attacks report experiencing no chest pain, long regarded as a hallmark symptom — yet women often have symptoms of a heart attack (including chest pain, pounding or racing heartbeat, nausea and shortness of breath) when what is really occurring is a stroke.



In short, women need to know their unique risk factors and symptoms of these vital health concerns. Here are some resources to help:



• Women, Heart Disease and Stroke from the American Heart Association

• Heart Attack Symptoms: An Action Plan for Women from the Women's Heart Foundation

• Stroke - Frequently Asked Questions from the National Women's Health Information Center (womenshealth.gov)

• Gender and Alzheimer's Disease from Everyday Health



Despite the different symptoms, however, prevention of heart attack, stroke and possibly even Alzheimer's Disease is virtually the same: Eat a heart-healthy diet and exercise regularly.



In keeping with the belief that what’s good for your heart is good for your brain, physical activities and regular exercise can help improve both the health of your heart and blood vessels in the brain. They keep blood flowing to the brain, nourishing existing brain cells and even creating new ones. Long-term physical activity, including exercise, appears to offer one of the best protective effects against the risk of dementia or a delay in the onset of symptoms. Moderate daily activity also can substantially reduce the risk of developing cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, midlife obesity and metabolic syndrome.




bunsofclay


Community Leader of Women's Health



   



iVillage Member
Registered: 08-24-2009
Thu, 07-07-2011 - 5:31pm

A tragic event in my family prompted me to look up this thread and give it a bump. My mother-in-law passed away a few days ago after suffering a massive heart attack. Like many women, she had only mild symptoms — slight nausea and a little shortness of breath when exerting herself — and thought she had a virus.


The American Heart Association link in the earlier message is out of date. Here is a current link: http://www.goredforwomen.org/about_heart_disease_and_stroke.aspx




Avatar for cmkarla
Administrator
Registered: 01-03-2001
Mon, 07-11-2011 - 8:51am
Maureen, we are so sorry to hear of your loss. Thank you for reaching out to other women in the wake of your terrible news. You may help save a life. {{hugs}}

Karla
Community ModeratoriVillage.com

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-24-2009
Mon, 07-18-2011 - 2:08pm
cmkarla wrote:
Maureen, we are so sorry to hear of your loss. Thank you for reaching out to other women in the wake of your terrible news. You may help save a life. {{hugs}}