Unmarried women "more likely to die of heart disease"
Unmarried women carry of higher risk of dying from heart disease, concludes a study published in the journal BMC Medicine.
For the study, researchers analyzed data from the UK’s Million Women Study, a national health study involving 1.3 million women. The women completed a health questionnaire at baseline and three years later. Of the women surveyed for hospital admissions and death from heart disease, 734,626 with a mean age of 60 were included in the study.
During follow-up, 30,747 women developed heart disease and 2,148 women died from the disease. Researchers found that women who were married or living with a partner had the same risk of developing heart disease as unmarried women. But women who were married were 28 percent less likely to die from heart disease compared to women who were unmarried.
Researchers say this might be because women with spouses have someone to encourage them to respond to symptoms and seek medical attention, as well as provide emotional support. However, medication adherence has not been proven to be better among married women.
Researchers say there are some limitations to the study, including the diverse definition of being unpartnered. It could be that women who are widowed or divorced rather than never married is what places unmarried at a higher risk of heart disease.
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