For most women, life is measured by ages, stages and seasons. From adolescence to adulthood, into the workforce for some, motherhood for others and for many women – both – as the milestones of a woman’s life changes, so do her unique risks for developing cardiovascular disease.
As we continue to settle into our next normal, we’re asking women to keep the rhythm going and Be the Beat.
Wherever you are in an effort to reclaim your healthy rhythm – keep the beat going – turn up the tempo, add a new step, set a new goal. Small actions build up to big changes over time.
Heart Disease and Stroke in Women
Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in women, claiming more lives than all cancers combined. The reality is currently, more than 44% of women ages 20 and older are living with some form of cardiovascular disease. In addition, Women account for more than 57% of total stroke deaths but also account for more than 4 million survivors over the age of 20.
Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of maternal death in the U.S. or more simply put, heart disease is the No. 1 killer of new moms. It can pose a threat to women’s heart health during pregnancy and later in life, making it important that women understand how to care for themselves and their baby.
There are many factors that impact a woman’s cardiovascular health during pregnancy, but the four key risk factors are race/ethnicity, age, hypertension and obesity. Black and American Indian/Alaska Native women continue to be at significantly higher risk .
High blood pressure that develops during pregnancy is associated with a 67% higher risk of later cardiovascular disease. Preeclampsia is associated with a 75% higher risk of later death from cardiovascular disease. The odds of cardiovascular disease in women who have gestational diabetes is 68% higher compared with those who do not.
Women and CPR
About 70% or nearly 3 in 4 cardiac arrests that happen outside of the hospital happen in homes. If you are called on to perform CPR it will likely be for someone you love.
A woman is less likely to receive CPR from a bystander than a man, and men have 23% higher odds of surviving a sudden cardiac arrest than women. Too many women die from cardiac arrest – partly because people are afraid to touch them.
Women are more likely than men to be diagnosed with depression . The mental well-being of women has been significantly impacted by the pandemic and more women have reported that their workload increased in the past few years
What’s good for your mind and body is good for your heart. How you eat, move and manage stress impacts your well-being, physically and mentally and decreases your risk of cardiovascular disease. Your support can help women and moms thrive.
Underrepresentation in Research
There are significant biological differences between men and women, and clinical trials have not always adequately enrolled women or analyzed sec-specific differences in the data In fact, as of 2020, only 38% of cardiovascular clinical research trial participants are women
The American Heart Association is working to change this fact through Research Goes Red, a joint initiative between Go Red for Women and Verily’s Project Baseline designed to engage more women in cardiovascular research by leveraging cutting edge technology to make it easier than ever for women to participate – often
without ever having to leave home.