The Heart of Women

Which are the symptoms and which prevention ?


The feminine cardio-vascular disease, being though very much ignored in what concerns the symptoms, and especially the women themselves, has become the priority of public health in Europe because of its link to the mortality rate. This general ignorance is the origin for the belated taking care of it for different reasons.

–      An other chest pain or none at all, specially among diabetic women

–       Less significant angina pectoris

–       Often belated diagnosis for hospitalization and for cardiac surgery

–       Belated appearance of the first cardio-vascular incident

On the other hand, women are minimizing all these alert signals, which are often located at another place than with men (epigastric or heartburn shoulder or abdominal pain – 15% against 7% for men) Women often don’t think of a cardio-vascular disease and also the GPs.

However, breast pain of a woman, as of a man stays the most frequent symptom which needs urgent medical counselling, especially in presence of cardio-vascular factors of risk.

Breast pain can show up in other forms like :

–       Transpiring

–       Nausea or vomiting

–       Feeling uneasy and chest tightness

–       Thoracic Palpitations, accelerated pulse

–       Loss of appetite and sudden tiredness

–       Or breathing difficulty

These are a group of symptoms, which are often falsely linked to anguish or arthrosis, which are the reason for late arrival of urgencies. And also: Women are considered as being less at risk, even when there are severe troubles appearing. They also have less access to examinations, to treatment, and they receive lower doses of treatments, even when the pathology diagnosed as being in acute phase or chronic.

Up to today, clinical research is mostly made for the masculine heart and there don’t exist specific treatments (except for HTA) for the feminine heart, even when a woman’s pathology of the molecules seems to be different.


To be able to face this epidemic an early screening has to be proposed to every woman who is showing risk factors. As well as those over 45 have to be tested under effort, who want to take up again a sportive activity, even when the results of this test seems to be less clear among women than among men. It would also be helpful to give order for a cardiac ultrasound scan, an MRI scanner for stress or a coronary scan, even more so to systematize the screening of arterial high blood pressure concerning the 3 major feminine hormones.

Women, being subject to personal family pression, are hesitating too often to follow re-education training after an invention for an cardio-vascular accident. In vew of this knowledge, the most pragmatic prevention is therefore to guide the women to a healthier life, which is associated to :

–      Physical activity

–      No tobacco consumption

–      Little alcohol consumption (2 units per day)

–      Low salt diet

Among the important recommendations there are:

–       A smoker over 35 years has to stop taking any contraceptives

–       To maintain a HbA ≤ 7% when having diabetes

–       And to get prescription for anxiolytics or antidepressants for depressed women, because a depression is favouring cardio-vascular risks

Also, there are certain preventive treatments, like the daily doses of aspirin in case of an myocardial infarct of a woman under 65, are no longer recommended today. Relative recommendations for a substitute treatment for menopause are tested with new evaluations, namely concerning primary cardio-vascular prevention.

As underlined by American scientific directives, it is more than urgent that specific studies are being done of the heart of women, pharmacologically and epidemiologically.

Priority has to be given to public health