Women’s Heart Health

When it comes to the diagnosis and treatment of heart disease in women, one of the biggest challenges is that it’s still perceived as a man’s disease. In 2016, more women died of cardiovascular disease than accidents, diabetes, and cancer combined. Many people believe breast cancer is the leading cause of death in women in the United States, but according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), it’s actually heart disease. Today, 1 in 3 women live with some form of heart disease. 

Unfortunately, women’s heart disease is often under-treated, under-recognized and under-diagnosed. At Banner Health, we acknowledge the unique aspects and risk factors associated with women’s heart health and offer services and treatment options tailored to our female patients’ needs.

Heart Disease Risk Factors for Women

While many risk factors for heart disease can affect both men and women – like high blood pressure or high cholesterol – other risk factors can be different for or unique to women:

  • Menopause – low estrogen can increase a woman’s risk 
  • Complications with Pregnancy 
  • Chemotherapy drugs – like those used to treat breast cancer
  • Stress and depression
  • Diabetes – women with diabetes have a high risk of developing heart disease than men with diabetes
  • Smoking

If you have experienced any of these risk factors and are concerned about your heart health, the heart specialists at Banner Health are here for you. Schedule a visit with us today.

Heart Attack Symptoms in Women 

Women may not experience the “classic” symptoms of a heart attack. This can sometimes delay diagnosis and treatment. Women should be aware of their unique symptoms and not be afraid to tell your doctor if they think they are having a heart attack. Symptoms may include:

  • Pain or discomfort in one or both arms
  • Shortness of breath
  • Fever and nausea or vomiting
  • Dizziness
  • Pain in the chest or abdomen

If you think you may be experiencing a heart attack, call 911 immediately.

Learn more about heart attack symptoms, treatment and prevention

Women’s Heart Center

At Banner Health’s Women’s Heart Center we focus on prevention strategies, diagnostic tools, and therapies developed with women in mind. We’re dedicated to improving the heart health of women within our communities and the nation.