Heart disease is commonly assumed to be a male-dominated health issue. However, in the United States, it is the most significant cause of mortality for women. According to Medline Plus, it causes around one out of four female fatalities each year. The easiest way to confirm heart disease is to run a cardiac enzyme test which is quick and highly sensitive.
Heart disease is linked to a variety of illnesses that affect your heart and blood arteries. These are some of them:
- coronary artery disease; coronary (blockages in the blood vessels around the heart)
- artery disease of the limbs (blockages in the blood vessels in arms or legs)
- issues with the beat of your heart (arrhythmia)
- issues with the muscles or valves of your heart (valvular heart disease)
- heart failure due to congestive heart failure (problem with the pumping or relaxation functions of the heart muscle). This can be confirmed with the heart enzyme test.
- vasospasm of the coronary arteries (sudden contractions of an artery wall)
- microvascular disease of the coronary arteries (problems with the small blood vessels that branch off from the coronary arteries)
Early symptoms of cardiac disease in women.
Many women are unaware that they have heart disease until a significant medical emergency, such as a heart attack. If you do have early signs of heart disease, you may notice the following:
- chest pain or discomfort that can be severe or dull and heavy (angina)
- pain in the neck, jaw, or throat
- pain in the upper abdomen
- pain in the upper back
- odd exhaustion
- shortness of breath
- overall weakness
- skin color changes, such as grey skin
These symptoms might arise when you’re resting or going about your everyday activities. These symptoms might potentially be signs of a heart attack and it’s better to confirm the possibility with a rapid heart enzyme blood test in Watauga.
Symptoms of a heart attack in women
Because of their symptoms, women may not pay as much attention to a heart attack as men do. Compared to males, women are more prone to develop atypical heart attack symptoms. In addition,
As heart disease worsens, other symptoms may appear. Depending on your heart disease type, your symptoms may vary.
Symptoms of heart disease in women that may develop later include:
- swollen legs, feet, or ankles
- weight gain
- sleeping issues
- sensation as though your heart is pounding (heart palpitations);
Women’s heart disease risk factors
Some kinds of heart disease are congenital, meaning they develop due to problems with the heart’s formation.
Heart disease risk may be influenced by genetic factors as well. There are, however, several disorders that might increase your chance of getting heart disease. These are some of them:
- hypertension (high blood pressure)
- diabetes or high blood pressure during pregnancy
- menopause or early menopause
- autoimmune problems
- calcifications of the breast arteries
Diagnosing heart disease in women
A doctor will initially inquire about your personal and family medical history to identify heart disease. They’ll then ask about your symptoms, including when they began and how serious they are. They’ll also inquire about your habits, such as smoking or exercising.
A doctor can use blood tests to determine your risk of heart disease. A lipid profile, which measures cholesterol and triglycerides, is the most prevalent.
Your doctor may order further blood tests based on your symptoms and medical history, such as tests to look for:
- inflammation levels
- sodium and potassium levels
- blood cell counts
- kidney health
- Thyroid function
- Liver function
- Cardiac enzyme test
- Your doctor may order other tests. Consider the following scenario:
- An electrocardiogram (ECG) is a test that may determine the heart’s electrical activity. This allows a doctor to examine your heart rhythm and check for signs of a heart attack.
- A stress test can determine how effectively your heart responds to physical exertion. Throughout this exam, you’ll exercise while wearing equipment that measures your heart’s electrical impulses and blood pressure. It can tell you whether you have blockages in your arteries that restrict blood flow to your heart when you exercise.
- A CT scan is used to determine how much calcium is present in your coronary arteries.
- An ultrasound of your neck’s carotid arteries can detect stroke risk.
- The blood pressure ratio in your legs to your arms is the ankle-brachial
- Coronary computed tomography angiography is a specialist CT scan that examines the blood arteries around the heart for blockages.
- A continuous EKG or ambulatory arrhythmia monitor, where you wear a device that continuously monitors your heart’s electrical impulses, may also be recommended by your doctor. Depending on your symptoms, you may use this device for a few days or a few weeks.
In general, heart disease therapy is like men’s treatment. Treatment options can vary depending on the type of heart disease you have. However, they could include:
- Cholesterol-lowering drugs
- Angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors
- Angiotensin II receptor blockers
- Anticoagulants and antiplatelet medicines