Younger Women More Likely to Ignore Early MI Warning Signs

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Early MI Warning Signs
Early MI Warning Signs

(HealthDay News) — Younger women may ignore early warning signs of an acute myocardial infarction (AMI), a new study reveals. The finding could help explain why younger women have higher rates of death from AMI than men in their age group. The study was published online February 24 in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes.

Yale researchers interviewed women aged 30–55 who survived an AMI. The study authors found that many of the women didn't pay attention to early warning signs such as pain and dizziness.

The interviews revealed that wide variations in the type of initial AMI symptoms, and factors such as work and family, sometimes influenced the women's decisions to seek emergency medical care. Not all of the women received an immediate or complete assessment of their symptoms or a formal diagnosis of AMI, according to the study. And some women said they did not take steps to prevent heart disease.

The findings show the need to better educate women about the early symptoms of AMI, and to change the way women and medical teams respond to such symptoms, study senior author Leslie Curry, PhD, MPH, a senior research scientist at the Yale Global Health Leadership Institute in New Haven, Conn., noted in a university news release. More than 15,000 women younger than 55 die from heart disease in the United States each year, making it a leading cause of death in that age group, the researchers noted.

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