89% of women are “at high cardiovascular risk”

89% of women are “at high cardiovascular risk”
89% of women are “at high cardiovascular risk”

As part of the International Day of Action for Women’s Health, which was held yesterday, the Agir pour le coeur des femmes association published the figures from its National Observatory of Women’s Health 2024. The data are from medical records resulting from screenings of the Women’s Heart Bus – a traveling medical bus which meets women for cardiovascular and gynecological screening. In all, more than 8,000 women pushed the doordoor of the bus for the last three years.

What are the cardiovascular risk factors in women?

According to these data, 89% of women have at least two cardiovascular risk factors, and are “ at high cardiovascular risk » according to the association. Among these factors, we find in particular smoking, diabetes, hypertension, sedentary lifestyle, consumption ofalcoholalcohol, family history, obesity and overweight, and triglycerides present in too large quantities in the blood. In addition to one of these factors, 46% of them have two gynecological risk factors, such as contraceptioncontraception contraindicated, lack of gynecological follow-up, late pregnancies, etc. In addition, age and menopause are risk factors: “ Before the menopausemenopauseTHE hormoneshormones feminine, like estrogenestrogenprotect women against cardiovascular illnessescardiovascular illnessesreducing the ‘bad’ cholesterolcholesterol and increase ‘good’ cholesterol, thus preserving blood vessels. But this protection decreases with hormonal contraception, then disappears with menopause. », Explains the French Federation of Cardiology (FFC). In addition, 67% of women have psychosocial risk factors, such as chronic stress. “ Twice as many women as men suffer from a depressive episode and they are more frequently in a disadvantaged socio-economic situation. These risk factors are as important ashigh blood pressurehigh blood pressure and the diabetesdiabetes », specifies Agir pour le Coeur des femmes.

The French Cardiology Federation wants to inform women, men and health professionals via a video campaign on the specific care and monitoring that women need. © French Cardiology Federation

“A lack of consideration of female specificities by medicine”

Despite this cardiovascular risk, only 1 in 5 women benefit from follow-up by a specialist, and 79% have none. Among postmenopausal women, a particularly high-risk period, 74% of them do not have cardiovascular monitoring. About the gynecologygynecology, only 44% of postmenopausal women benefit from appropriate monitoring. Acting for the hearts of women denounces “ the lack of consideration of female specificities by medicine “. This tends to “ generate major support defects. THE symptomssymptoms are less well identified, the treatments are more suited to men… Added to this is the apprehension of performing cardiac massage on a woman for fear of touching her breasts… », adds the association.

Cardiac accident: women treated 36 minutes later than men

The FFC notes that women tend to minimize their symptoms and delay treatment: “ In the major French register interested in myocardial infarctionmyocardial infarction (FAST-MI register), we observe a median delay before the first call following the painpain chest of 120 minutes for women and 84 minutes for men “. This shows a gender gap for the first chest assessment and an underestimation of the probability of a heart attack by women themselves. And while cardiac rehabilitation is essential for recovery after a accidentaccident heart disease, women are again unfavorably affected. The explanation put forward by the FFC: “ Women often prioritize their family and professional obligations to the detriment of their health. They wish to resume their daily activities while a period of rehabilitation in a center, supervised by a multidisciplinary team, would allow them to benefit from all the practical advice to return to a life as normal as possible and with a minimized risk of relapserelapse “.

The French Cardiology Federation calls for catching up on the impact of cardiovascular diseases in women. To achieve this, she wants to inform women but also men via a video campaign broadcast until June 23 and increase awareness among health professionals about the specific care and monitoring that women need.

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