Mon. Mar 1st, 2021

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The quiet enemy: why women’s heart attack sneaks up on us

3 min read

Irina The Day
cardiologist

Irina Day — physician, cardiologist usupovskiy hospital told us, what’s the quickest way to identify the enemy and neutralize.

Times have changed: women now work alongside men, they also smoke and drink alcohol. In women of childbearing age often present additional risk factor is contraceptives. The use of combined oral contraceptives containing more than 50 micrograms of estrogen, 1.6 times increases the risk of arterial thrombosis — conditions, which includes myocardial infarction and ischemic stroke.

For women only

Some of the options heart disease is characteristic only for women and do not occur in men. The most famous of them is syndrome X. It is most often develops in women before menopause. The fact that during physical activity the heart muscle need more oxygen. For this heart, the blood vessels dilate, but the syndrome X this is not happening. The major arteries that feed the heart, remain constant.

Another dangerous condition — cardiomyopathy Takotsubo, it is called syndrome “broken heart”, and for good reason! Because this condition often develops on the background of stress, as a result of massive release of noradrenaline and adrenaline. The symptoms of this disease are very easily confused with myocardial infarction. However, this condition provided that the patient survives the acute stage of the disease is reversible, and in most cases full recovery is possible and recovery of cardiac function.

Girls left, boys to the right

Women have their own peculiarities of ischemic heart disease. For some women, nothing hurts at the same time, and to identify the problem only from the doctor. And localization, and the nature of the pain also often is unusual and confuses the doctors.

There is even such a phenomenon — the “female” electrocardiogram, when the film suddenly logs the changes typical of ischemic heart disease, but the disease of the patient. This fact sometimes makes difficult the diagnosis of myocardial infarction in women even the most experienced cardiologists.

How to protect yourself

So, in your hands, of course, not all, but many. What to do to reduce the risk of heart attack?

  • Quit Smoking. Quitting Smoking greatly reduces the risk of damage to the endothelium — the inner lining of the vessels — and, consequently, the risk of coronary heart disease.
  • Less alcohol. According to international clinical guidelines the amount of alcohol is safe for healthy adult women is not more than 14 g of ethanol, which corresponds to about 120 ml of dry wine or 300 ml of beer.
  • Choose safe OK. If you use combined oral contraceptives, discuss in detail with your gynecologist the best tool. For today the most safe in respect of the risk development of arterial thrombosis are preparations containing not more than 30 µg of estrogen and synthetic progestogen levonorgestrel.
  • To observe the regime of work and rest. Sleep: daily sleep for 8 hours is an excellent means of preventing the emotional stress.
  • Meditate. Additional means in dealing with stress can be a meditative practice, a practice of awareness (mindfulness), yoga.
  • Take time daily dosed physical stress: in addition to the traditional trips to the fitness club, do not despise these simple ways to increase physical activity, intensive walking, Cycling, exercising at home. During training, observe the rule of optimum heart rate: your pulse should not exceed the maximum age, which is calculated by the formula: 220 — your age.
  • Stick to a healthy balanced diet, today most optimal power design is recognized as probably familiar to you is the Mediterranean diet.

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