Abstract This study set out to critically review studies discussing cardiovascular diseases in women and the implications relating to improvements of their health outcomes. This study evaluated different studies using specific inclusion criteria, mostly covering studies in the UK and on CVD risks relating to women past their menopausal age…
Interventions in improving health outcomes relate include hormone replacement therapy, the use of low-dose aspirin, and lifestyle changes including exercise and diet changes in order to reduce BMI, waist circumference and overall reduce the risks for CVD among these women. In critically evaluating these studies, more large-population randomized controlled trials are needed in order to compare therapies and interventions in the management of CV risks among menopausal women. Through these studies, the best and most appropriate interventions can be applied in order to improve the health outcomes for all women. Cardiovascular disease in women: Implications for improving health outcome Chapter 1: INTRODUCTION Cardiovascular diseases are considered the major cause of mortality among men and women, not just in the UK, but in the larger global community as well (World Heart Federation Organization, 2012). Based on 2004 statistics alone, for Europe, these cardiovascular diseases represents about 55% of total female deaths, mostly for diseases like coronary artery disease and stroke (WHO, 2004). Despite these significant figures, however, the issue of heart disease among women is often underestimated especially due to the view of women not susceptible to ischaemic heart disease. What is not actually understood is that women approaching fertile age have lower risks for heart diseases, however, as they reach menopausal age, they are as vulnerable to heart diseases as the rest of the population. They therefore become at risk also for untreated issues including myocardial infarction, heart failure, as well as sudden cardiac death (Stramba-Badiale, et.al., 2006). Moreover, the symptoms relating to ischaemic heart diseases for women may be different from the usually observed symptoms for men and at times may cause the under-diagnosis of the disease. In the UK, cardiovascular disease is a major health problem and it is actually the leading cause of death in the country as well as the world (NHS, 2013). About 1.6 million men and one millions women have chronic heart disease in the UK. CVDs have also been the cause for yearly deaths numbering 88,000 individuals in the UK, or about 224 people daily, or one person dying from CVD every 6 minutes. Majority of deaths from heart disease are attributed to heart attacks. On a yearly basis, the UK has about 124,000 heart attacks in a year (NHS, 2013). About 152,000 strokes have been reported in the UK on an annual basis, and have been responsible for more than 43,000 yearly deaths (NHS, 2013). The NHS (2013) has also discovered that about one in five men and one in eight women often die from coronary heart diseases. CHD affects more men as compared to women, however, starting at the age of 50, the possibility of developing CHD is more or less similar for both genders. The European Society of Cardiology launched the Women at heart program in order to evaluate research initiatives on cardiovascular diseases for women. A Policy Conference on Cardiovascular Diseases was an initial program developed for this program (Stramba-Badiale, et.al., 2006). Its goal was to gather opinions on experts from member countries in order to evaluate European conditions in terms of cardiovascular disease management, to determine gaps in the management of cardiovascular diseases among women, and to secure strategies in order to manage such gaps. Cardiovascular dise ...
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Acknowledgements I was unable to complete this study without the support of a number of persons. In this regard, I would like to acknowledge and thank the Health Care Studies (Nursing) Hong Kong Programme Leader Dr.____________ and the supervisor of the dissertation in health care studies Ms.
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