Older women with clogged arteries need better treatment


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Researchers say older women may need better treatment for clogged arteries.Dimitrie Tanaskovic/Stocksey
  • Atherosclerosis is a condition in which arteries narrow due to the sticky buildup of plaque deposits.
  • Researchers say women over the age of 55 with the disease have a higher risk of cardiovascular events such as heart attack than men in the same age group.
  • Experts say maintaining healthy blood pressure and cholesterol levels and not smoking can improve cardiovascular health in women of all ages.

Postmenopausal women with blocked arteries have a higher risk of heart attack than men of the same age.

This is according to a study presented at the recently presented European Society of Cardiology Scientific Meeting. European Heart Journal – Cardiovascular imaging.

Researchers said in their study they found that postmenopausal women were at a higher risk of developing plaques than men of the same age.

“This study suggests that the constant burden of atherosclerosis puts postmenopausal women at higher risk than men of that age,” said study authors Leiden University Medical in the Netherlands. Dr. Sophie van Rosendahl, Research Fellow at the Center, said: Press statement.

“Since atherosclerotic plaque volume has emerged as a target for determining treatment intensity to prevent heart attacks, the results may have implications for treatment,” she added. “Our results indicate that postmenopausal women may need higher doses of statins or the addition of another lipid-lowering drug. To confirm these findings. , needs further research.”

About 25,000 people from six countries in North America, Europe and Asia participated in the study.

An imaging technique called coronary computed tomography angiography (CCTA) was used to obtain 3D images of the arteries of the heart.

Atherosclerosis is a condition in which arteries narrow due to the build-up of sticky deposits of plaque.

In the US, about half A percentage of people between the ages of 45 and 84 have atherosclerosis and are unaware of it. Atherosclerosis-related heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States.

Researchers investigated whether the presence of atherosclerosis has the same prognostic importance in men and women of the same age.

They reported a 12-year delay in the onset of coronary atherosclerosis in women.

Plaque presence was found to similarly predict significant adverse cardiovascular events in men and women younger than 55 years.

However, women in the postmenopausal group aged 55 years and older had a higher risk of adverse cardiovascular events than men in the same age group.

Among postmenopausal women, women with moderate or high plaque burden had a 2.21- to 6.11-fold higher risk of serious adverse cardiovascular events.

“In this study, we observed an increased risk in women compared to men, especially in postmenopausal women. This means that the same amount of plaque can have a big impact on blood flow,” van Rosendael said.

“Our findings suggest that despite a similar atherosclerotic burden, the accelerated progression of postmenopausal atherosclerosis is known to occur in women compared to men. We have associated it with a significant increase in the relative risk of pneumonia, which may affect the intensity of medical care,” she added.

Dr. Abha Kandelwal, a clinical associate professor of cardiovascular medicine at Stanford University in California, who was not involved in the study, said the findings were not surprising.

“Clinically, we know that a variety of changes occur before and after menopause, some of which have a significant impact on the metabolic state of the heart in women. , cholesterol and weight are often affected, so I always ask my patients to be re-evaluated at that time,” she said. medical news today.

“Especially during menopause, women experience many changes not only in their cardio-metabolic changes, but also in their emotions, which can lead to increased rates of depression and disturbed sleep. , has been shown to affect cardiac outcomes if left untreated,” added Khandelwal.

Experts say there are many steps women can take to protect their cardiovascular health, even before menopause.

“At any age in life, each patient should work with their physician to maximize a healthy lifestyle, screen for atherosclerosis and sticky plaque build-up, and be screened for atherosclerosis and other atherosclerotic conditions such as hypertension. There is an opportunity to screen for risk factors that cause arteriosclerosis, such as blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, smoking, family history, vasculitis and inflammation of blood vessels, and certain autoimmune diseases, to prevent and aggressively treat these. please.” Said in California medical news today.

“Therefore, there are absolutely preventative options that women can identify, treat early, and prevent from becoming a problem with their doctors. It’s certainly an important process to start with,” she added.



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