On Call With Dr. Dave: my interview about women & heart disease

by Carolyn Thomas   ♥   @HeartSisters   

You can tell from watching this interview how much fun it was to chat with Dr. David D’Agate about women’s heart disease. Dr. Dave is a preventive cardiologist in Long Island, New York,  board-certified in internal medicine, cardiovascular disease, and nuclear cardiology – and probably best described by this personal testimonial from one of his heart patients: “extremely knowledgeable, kind and funny.”  My favourite kind of physician.         . .           .          . Continue reading “On Call With Dr. Dave: my interview about women & heart disease”

The familiar self, the unfamiliar self and the recovery of self

by Carolyn Thomas     @HeartSisters   

As Bruce Springsteen once sang, “You get used to anything. Sooner or later it just becomes your life.”(1)  Bruce was right. Since being diagnosed with heart disease in 2008, I’ve observed a bizarre and surprising change in my ability to adjust to ongoing cardiac symptoms. My symptoms have not changed. But at some point, I just got better at adjusting to them.

In fact, I suspect that the chest pain which just feels “normal” to me by now would make most other people head straight to the Emergency Department.      .       .      Continue reading “The familiar self, the unfamiliar self and the recovery of self”

Walking the tightrope: women cardiologists in an old boys’ club

by Carolyn Thomas     @HeartSisters   

You know there’s trouble when the Women In Cardiology Leadership Council reports this year that their group (part of the American College of Cardiology) is “very frustrated and concerned about the lack of growth in the numbers of women pursuing a career in cardiology.”(1) 

And no wonder! Fewer than 13 per cent of cardiologists are women, despite what’s been called “a robust pipeline of female med students and internal medicine residents” who could choose this field.(2)  And I’d bet my next squirt of nitro spray that a man implanted your stent  – because only about 5 per cent of all interventional cardiologists (the ones specifically trained for this procedure) are women.

Female cardiologists are not only the minority in their profession, but “discrimination against women is entrenched in the culture of cardiology”; in fact, female cardiologists are more likely than males (96% vs 8%) to experience discrimination related to gender.(3)       .         .            .         .    Continue reading “Walking the tightrope: women cardiologists in an old boys’ club”

Two kinds of heart patients, and the third kind that aren’t patients – yet!

by Carolyn Thomas       @HeartSisters

The shocking 2019 American Heart Association National Survey results released in September reported that women’s awareness of heart disease has actually declined during the past decade. As my regular readers already know, I felt sick when I read this. Barely half of the women surveyed, for example, could recognize “chest pain” as a possible sign of heart attack. It took a wee lie-down before I was able to re-evaluate my own awareness-raising efforts here on Heart Sisters.  At first blush, it appeared to me that I’m aiming to reach two specific kinds of women.    .     .  Continue reading “Two kinds of heart patients, and the third kind that aren’t patients – yet!”

When a red dress just isn’t enough to raise awareness

by Carolyn Thomas       @HeartSisters

A decade of lost ground  is how the official commentary from the American Heart Association bluntly described the stunningly awful results of its own 2019 National Survey on women’s heart disease awareness reported last month. I wrote about my own stunned reaction to this survey in Women’s Heart Disease: an Awareness Campaign Fail?

The results were astonishing.  They suggested that women not only had a low awareness of even the most basic facts about heart disease – the #1 killer of women worldwide – but awareness levels were significantly lower than an AHA awareness survey had found 10 years earlier.    .        .    .    .   Continue reading “When a red dress just isn’t enough to raise awareness”