According to a 2018 study published in the journal Circulation, young women are suffering heart attacks at a higher rate now than 20 years ago. The study showed that the heart attack rate for women under the age of 55 has been steadily increasing since 1995. By 2014, those women accounted for 31% of hospital admissions for heart attacks. In contrast, the rate of hospitalization for young men with heart attacks decreased. The study also showed that young women who had heart attacks were more likely to have high blood pressure or diabetes.
Implicit Bias in Healthcare
One of the factors that may result in more heart attacks among young women is the overall implicit bias in healthcare. Men who present with conditions such as high blood pressure are taken more seriously than women with the same condition. The study found that women with heart attacks were less likely to be given medication than men to prevent future attacks. Women are also less likely to get medication that helps with cholesterol levels or clotting.
Misdiagnosis of Heart Attack
Heart attack symptoms present differently in women than they do in men which can lead to misdiagnosis of a heart attack when a woman comes to a hospital. Women tend to experience more symptoms in addition to chest pain that can be misinterpreted as other conditions. In addition, women tend to explain their chest pain differently than men, and the symptom can be misinterpreted by doctors. It is important for doctors to recognize that women react differently to heart attacks and how to identify a heart attack when it is happening.
In addition, when it comes to younger people, doctors may be less likely to identify symptoms as a heart attack. It is expected that a person must be older in order to experience a heart attack. Medical professionals may look for other explanations for heart attack symptoms in a younger patient. Doctors should take the time to properly evaluate a patient before disregarding symptoms.
Contact a Trusted Attorney
If you’ve been injured as the result of a misdiagnosed heart attack, you should consult with a trusted attorney. At Bonina & Bonina, P.C., we have over 50 years of experience helping New Yorkers injured by medical malpractice. Contact us online or call us at 1-888-MEDLAW1 to schedule your free consultation. Home and hospital visits are available. Se habla español.