Women are known more for their “heart”: a lover’s warm heart, a mother’s love, a wife’s loving care of her husband, a daughter’s love and care for her parents. But today a woman’s heart may also carry a lethal bullet for her.
Did you know that nearly twice as many women in the United States die of heart disease and stroke as from all forms of cancer, including breast cancer ? Heart disease is America ‘s number one killer.
Here’s some more startling statistics:
- Seventy million people in the USA alone have heart disease .
- 1.5 million heart attacks occur in the United States each year with 500,000 deaths.
- More than 233,000 women die annually from cardiovascular disease.
- Sudden death is more common among women with heart attack.
- The National Registry of Myocardial Infarctions (New England Journal Med., 22 Jul 1999) reports that women have a worse outcome than men after having a heart attack. Data showed that women under the age of 50 had twice the mortality of men after having heart attack. Variances likely reflect increased severity of the disease in younger women.
- From 1983 to 1993, heart attack deaths fell about 30% overall but have not fallen nearly as much for women.
- 60% of women erroneously listed cancer as the leading cause of death among women. Deaths from all cancers in the USA are half as common as deaths from cardiovascular disease.
- Studies show the most common time for a heart attack to occur is Monday morning. Saturday morning ranks second. Another common time is during the early morning hours, when blood platelets are stickier.
- What’s more astounding is that 50 percent of men and 64 percent of women who die from heart disease experience no previous symptoms of it
These statistics are staggering and like affairs of the “heart”, health problems of the “heart” can be very complex and are often unexpected.
Many ask, ” What is a heart attack?” Simply, a heart attack is damage to the heart muscle due to loss of blood supply, usually caused by a complete blockage of an artery that supplies blood to the heart muscle.
Several risk factors have been isolated and they are:
- Tobacco smoke
- High blood cholesterol
- High blood pressure
- Physical inactivity
- Obesity or overweight
- Use of estrogens
- Excessive alcohol use
Some of the isolated risk factors we have no control over:
- Increasing age
- Sex (gender)
- Family History
- Previous heart attack or stroke or TIA (transient ischemic attack)
Watch for the following warning signs and seek immediate medical attention. Calling 911 is your best bet. If you call your doctor, he most likely will tell you to call 911 immediately!
- Chest discomfort. Most heart attacks involve discomfort in the center of the chest that lasts more than a few minutes, or that goes away and comes back. It can feel like uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain.
- Discomfort in other areas of the upper body. Symptoms can include pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach.
- Shortness of breath. May occur with or without chest discomfort.
- Other signs: These may include breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness
Looking on the preventative side, what can you do to maintain a healthy heart for yourself and your loved ones?
There are many steps you can take. You probably already know what many of them are from reading the list above like stop smoking, eat a healthy diet with lots of fresh organic fruit and vegetables, get plenty of regular exercise, keep your weight under control along with your blood pressure and blood cholesterol.
You can talk with your health care provider about your risks for heart disease, appropriate screening tests and a personal program tailored to you.
Bypass heart surgery is one treatment for heart disease, but at times, it can be ineffective, and costly, not to mention risky. During bypass surgery, about 5 percent of patients have cardiac arrests or strokes and about 1-2 percent actually die.
An alternative step you can take to improve circulation and blood flow is chelation therapy.
In 1997 alone, there were 800,000 people who received chelation therapy. Today, while controversial, chelation therapy has become so popular that the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine and the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute are conducting the first large-scale, $30 million dollar clinical trial to study chelation’s effectiveness against heart disease.
While its use has not been conclusively demonstrated to treat cardiovascular disease, some researchers believe chelation therapy is a safer, less expensive, less invasive alternative that has shown positive results in improving circulation and blood flow.
Chelation therapy is administered by infusion of an amino acid called calcium EDTA that is scientifically proven to remove metals from the body. Some researchers believe that as chelation removes toxic metals from the body, oxidative stress diminishes and cholesterol levels lower, allowing blood to flow more freely through your arteries. The delivery process for chelation can be just 30 minutes for each treatment.
Patients seeking to improve circulation and prevent the need for surgery may benefit from an evaluation and course of chelation therapy.
In honor of American Heart Month, LifeWorks Wellness Center is offering a free health consultation during the month of February 2006 to determine whether chelation therapy might be suitable and effective for you. To schedule your free consultation call (727) 466-6789 or toll free (877) 543-3975.
For more information on chelation therapy, visit www.lifeworkswellnesscenter.com .