While you can find heart attack symptoms effortlessly as a result of a quick Google search, Dr Nighat warned it’s important to differentiate between the signs in women and men. Women’s “vascular system is slightly different” because of hormones, pregnancy and different physical build to men, explained the doctor.
“They might have other symptoms where they just feel really tired, fatigued, and achy, or shoulder blade pain, or feeling lightheaded and dizziness.
“Those are all symptoms that could indicate that a cardiovascular event is either going to happen or about to happen.”
“And that’s what we miss in women.”
Fortunately, awareness of this symptom disparity could help women identify the warning signs promptly.
Another study, led by scientists at Imperial College London, also found that nearly 12,000 women in the UK have missed out on appropriate care, with some even dying as a result.
The researchers found that five percent of women who had a heart attack were wrongly classified as not at high risk of death.
This research looked at data from 420,000 patients across Europe between 2005 and 2017.
Dr Nighat added: “It’s so shocking. The gender bias and sexism that is happening in research is horrific.”