Heart disease is the number one killer and leading cause of disability of women in the United States. Nearly twice as many women in the U.S. die of heart disease, stroke and other cardiovascular diseases as from all forms of cancer, including breast cancer. Women need to know their numbers and risk factors for heart disease, working to reduce them. They should be able to recognize the warning signs of a heart attack.
“Women may experience different heart disease symptoms than men,” says Dr. Donna Adams, a multi-boarded and fellowship-trained interventional cardiologist on staff at Methodist Medical Center of Oak Ridge. “Although women can still experience textbook symptoms such as chest pain or pressure, shortness of breath, nausea, and sweating, they also are more likely to suffer from neck, shoulder, and jaw pain, extreme fatigue, or nausea and vomiting without chest pain.”
“I would advise women simply to listen to their bodies and be proactive about their heart health by being aware of their weight, body mass index, blood pressure, and cholesterol,” Dr. Adams says. “If a problem occurs, we’re here to help.”
Heart Health Speakers Available
Speakers specially trained as "Heart Truth Champions" are available to educate your women's organization about the important issue of women's heart health. The speakers are health advocates and volunteers who want to make a difference in the fight against heart disease. They have been trained and armed with information to share the truth about the risk of heart disease and stroke with other women. Covenant Health is heading up the local effort through its partnership with the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) which funds the program. To request a speaker, call Covenant Health at 865-541-4500. For more information about The Heart Truth, visit http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/educational/hearttruth/
Wear Red Day
Show your support for the fight against heart disease by wearing red the first Friday in February. The date has been designated National Wear Red Day and people across the country will wear red to increase public understanding of heart disease, especially for women.