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Heart Disease is the No. 1 Killer of Women in the U.S!

Last Updated: October 17, 2019

Heart Disease is the No. 1 Killer of Women in the U.S!

February is American Heart Month making it the perfect time to discuss the importance of heart disease and how it is the number one killer of women in the U.S.

Statistics show that 1 in 3 women die each year from heart disease, killing around one woman every minute! Furthermore, it is estimated 43 million women in the U.S. are affected by heart disease, making it more deadly than all forms of cancer combined. Just to put that in perspective, 1 in 31 American women die from breast cancer each year while 1 in 3 dies of heart disease.

Over the past decade, millions of women have joined the Go Red for Women campaign to help improve the healthcare industry and spread awareness of heart disease. Here are 8 encouraging accomplishments regarding the groundbreaking movement of the campaign.

Top 8 Accomplishments

1. Lives are being saved.

  • 34 percent fewer women now die from heart disease.
  • More than 627,000 women’s lives have been saved.

2. Overall heart health has improved.

  • Nearly 90 percent of participants made healthy lifestyle changes.
  • Women are exercising more and eating healthier diets.

3. Awareness of heart disease has increased.

  • 23 percent increase in awareness that heart disease is the #1 killer of women.

4. Diversity challenges have been identified and targeted.

  • Heart disease rates vary by ethnicity, with unique challenges for each.
  • Targeted efforts are reaching African American and Hispanic women.

5. Grassroots movement has grown substantially.

  • Enrollment has grown from 395,000 to 1,751,512.
  • Women completing Go Red Heart Check-ups has increased from 127,227 to 1,960,704.

6. Advocacy efforts have been successful.

  • Congress passed the Heart for Women Act in 2012, requiring the FDA to report clinical trials based on gender.
  • An increase in funding from the Center for Disease Control to provide screenings for low-income women.

7. Gender-specific guidelines have been developed for prevention and treatment.

  • Physicians are recognizing that women’s heart symptoms and treatment are different from men’s.
  • The “Get with the Guidelines” program has helped hospitals provide improved heart treatment for both genders.

8. Medical research has become gender-specific.

  • Women have been under represented in clinical studies, but the FDA now requires results reported by gender.
  • Increases gender-based research has revealed important differences in women’s symptoms and response to medications.

Heart Disease Infographic