Women with Diabetes May Have Higher Heart Risk Than Men
Anyone with diabetes has a higher chance of developing heart disease, but, according to the American Heart Association (AHA), that may be particularly true for women.
In a statement published in the journal Circulation, the AHA said women with type 2 diabetes may need to to take more forceful action than men to avoid heart attacks and strokes.
Overall, adults with diabetes are around two to four times more likely to have heart disease, mainly because diabetes patients are at greater risk for high blood pressure, high cholesterol and obesity.
But recent studies have shown that that cardiovascular risk may vary by gender. They suggest that women with type 2 diabetes are more likely to have heart attacks earlier in life than men and are more likely to die after a first heart attack.
Some of the disparity can be attributed to differences in how cardiovascular problems are handled. Women are less likely than men to use cholesterol-lowering drugs, blood pressure-lowering medications and aspirin. They are also less likely to have their blood pressure under control than men and less likely to undergo procedures to open blocked arteries, such as angioplasty.
Type 2 diabetes affects men and women at roughly equal rates in America–around 12.6 million women and 13 million men aged 20 and older have the condition.