Women, Stress, and Heart Disease

Women, Stress, and Heart Disease

Women, Stress, and Heart Disease

Women, Stress, and Heart Disease

Synopsis

The issue of women's health has long been neglected. This applies to many medical areas, but it has become most evident in the field of cardiology. For a long time, cardiology has been a medical specialty which seemed to be created for men, by men--particularly in research, but also in intensive clinical care units where male patients have been most visible and dominating. Furthermore, the clinical cardiologists--their doctors--have been predominantly male. It is easy to understand that most women think they will die from cancer rather than from heart disease, but this is not true. Heart disease is the leading cause of death for women as it is for men. Female patients are frequently encountered in the cardiology department, but they are older and seem to get less visibility and attention than the male patients. Research on risk factors for heart disease has also been almost entirely focused on men. This is true for psychosocial/behavioral aspects of cardiovascular risk.

Aiming to fill this gap, this volume contains contributions from outstanding international and national researchers from different fields such as sociology, psychology, epidemiology, cardiology, clinical medicine, and physiology. These professionals gathered together for an interdisciplinary seminar on women, stress, and heart disease held at the Swedish Society of Medicine. Based on the seminar, this book provides a solid foundation for empirically based scientific conclusions on this important subject.

Excerpt

This volume reflects the attempt to describe and discuss an area that has not attracted much attention until very recently. Although we are beginning to become aware of the importance of heart disease in women, the specific origins of and risk factors for heart disease in women are rarely considered in great detail. This is particularly true for behavioral and psychosocial factors. Therefore, we felt that the proceedings of the international conference on "Women, Stress, and Heart Disease" held in Stockholm at the Swedish Society of Medicine in September 1994 should be extended to a more comprehensive review of behavioral risk factors and diagnostic and prognostic factors, which are of particular interest for female heart disease. The speakers at the conference have devoted much time and energy after the conference to complete and update their knowledge and evidence on clinical aspects, on hormonal aspects, and physiological aspects of female heart disease. In this context, it is important to note that even if, for simplicity, we often use the general term heart disease, we are always referring to the most common of the female heart diseases, coronary heart disease.

Under the term heart disease we may include the underlying coronary artery atherosclerosis as well as the metabolic and hemodynamic characteristics of the coronary disease process. We also include the various clinical manifestations of stable and unstable angina pectoris and acute myocardial infarction. As described in the first chapter, the Framingham study reported angina pectoris to be more common as a first manifestation of coronary heart disease in women than in men. From the Framingham study, it was . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.