Toronto-based study aims to bridge knowledge gap in women’s cardiovascular health – CBC

‘There wasn’t the awareness that women would actually suffer … as much as men’: cardiologist

May 16, 2023

For 58-year-old Ellen Valter, volunteering in a heart study at Toronto’s Mount Sinai Hospital is a way for her to contribute to science in an area that lacks comprehensive information for women.

“I have found that it’s difficult to find information about health effects for women my age and older in various afflictions that advancing years seem to bring with them,” she told The Current.

Cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of death globally, affecting both men and women. However, women have historically been underrepresented in cardiovascular disease research, and experts say this knowledge gap puts women at risk.

“I think up until recently … because men experience things like heart attack a little bit earlier than women, there was initially a perception that heart disease was a man’s disease,” said Dr. Susanna Mak, a cardiologist and the study’s principal investigator.

This study seeks the involvement of post-menopausal women like Valter to bridge that knowledge gap in women’s cardiovascular health.

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