Factors That Increase Women's Heart Disease Risk
Those beyond your control:
Those you can take action against:
- Family history of early heart disease
- Being 55 or older
For Women with Heart Disease:
- Smoking-about 22.6 million women smoke
- High blood pressure-about 25 percent of women have hypertension, the condition's medical name; uncontrolled high blood pressure can lead to heart failure, which affects about 2.5 million women
- High blood cholesterol-about 55.5 million women have high total cholesterol
- Overweight/obesity-about 62 percent of women are overweight, including about 33 percent who are obese
- Physical inactivity-more women than men are physically inactive, with more than 25 percent of women engaging in no leisure-time physical activity and more than 60 percent of women do not meet the recommended amount of at least 30 minutes a day of moderately intense physical activity, such as brisk walking
- Diabetes-nearly 6 million women have been diagnosed with diabetes and another 2.8 million are undiagnosed
To learn more about heart disease and how to lower your risk:
- About 6.7 million American women have heart disease.
- Heart disease has no quick fix-even if a special procedure, such as an angioplasty, is performed, heart disease will worsen unless treated with lifestyle changes and medication.
- About 35 percent of women who have had a heart attack will have another within 6 years.
- About half of women who have a heart attack will be disabled with heart failure within 6 years. Heart failure is a life-threatening condition in which the heart cannot pump enough blood to supply the body's needs.
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
Office on Women's Health, DHHS
National Women's Health Information Center
American Heart Association
WomenHeart: the National Coalition for Women with Heart Disease
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