Women’s Risk

Women's Risk of Heart Disease

Learn How to Reduce Your Risk

Yes, it's true that men have a greater risk of heart attack than women do. But heart disease is still the leading cause of death for American women, according to the American Heart Association.

One woman dies every minute from cardiovascular disease. That's 460,000 deaths a year, according to the American Heart Association.

What Women Need to Know

When it comes to strokes, women have an even greater risk than men. About 60,000 more women than men have strokes each year. Women account for about 60 percent of stroke deaths. And black women have a greater risk of heart disease and stroke than white women.

Many women are often more aware and concerned about cancer. But nearly twice as many American women die of heart disease, stroke and other cardiovascular diseases than from all forms of cancer, including breast cancer, according to the American Heart Association.

Learn the basic warning signs or a heart attack and the warning signs of a stroke.

A Woman's Heart Attack

Just like a man, a woman's most common heart attack symptom is chest pain or discomfort.

But it's important to know that women are somewhat more likely than men to also have other common symptoms. For example, they may experience shortness of breath, nausea, vomiting, back pain or jaw pain.

Are You at Risk?

There are some important risk factors for heart disease and stroke that every woman should know, according to the American Heart Association.

  • As women age, their risk of heart disease and stroke rises.
  • You are more likely to develop heart disease or stroke if their close blood relatives have cardio-vascular disease.
  • Women who have had a heart attack or stroke are at high risk of having a second one.

So, you can't control your age or whether Mom has heart disease. But there some very important ways you can reduce your risk.

  • Choose a lifestyle that involves a healthy diet and exercise.
  • Quit Smoking now!
  • Make sure you don't have high cholesterol.
  • Prevent high blood pressure.