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Survey Says Women Underestimate Their Risk of Heart Disease

A survey of 1,031 people issued by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) found that many men and women still underestimate women’s vulnerability to heart disease and overestimate their risk for breast cancer.

Heart disease is the number one killer of women, causing more than 500,000 deaths each year, yet women continue to fear breast cancer the most. In fact, since 1984, heart disease has killed more women than men each year, possibly due to lack of preventive care and detection in women. In the survey, 38% of women reported that they might not recognize the unique warning signs of heart attacks in women, which include nausea and dizziness. Of women aged 50 and older, less than half reported discussing their risk for heart attack with their doctors.

Sources:

Washington Post - December 15, 1998

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