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Acute myocardial infarction in young women: current perspectives

Authors Chandrasekhar J, Gill A, Mehran R

Received 7 September 2017

Accepted for publication 14 December 2017

Published 7 June 2018 Volume 2018:10 Pages 267—284


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Elie Al-Chaer

Jaya Chandrasekhar,1 Amrita Gill,1,2 Roxana Mehran1

1Department of Cardiology, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, NY, 2Saint Louis University, St Louis, MO, USA

Abstract: Acute myocardial infarction (AMI) is the leading cause of death in women worldwide. Every year, in the USA alone, more than 30,000 young women <55 years of age are hospitalized with AMI. In recent decades, the incidence of AMI is increasing in younger women in the context of increasing metabolic syndrome, diabetes mellitus, and non-traditional risk factors such as stress, anxiety, and depression. Although women are classically considered to present with atypical chest pain, several observational data confirm that men and women experience similar rates of chest pain, with some differences in intensity, duration, radiation, and the choice of descriptors. Women also experience more number of symptoms and more prodromal symptoms compared with men. Suboptimal awareness, sociocultural and financial reasons result in pre-hospital delays in women and lower rates of access to care with resulting undertreatment with guideline-directed therapies. Causes of AMI in young women include plaque-related MI, microvascular dysfunction or vasospasm, and spontaneous coronary artery dissection. Compared with men, women have greater in-hospital, early and late mortality, as a result of baseline comorbidities. Post-AMI women have lower referral to cardiac rehabilitation with more dropouts, lower levels of physical activity, and poorer improvements in health status compared with men, with higher inflammatory levels at 1-year from index presentation. Future strategies should focus on primary and secondary prevention, adherence, and post-AMI health-related quality of life. This review discusses the current evidence in the epidemiology, diagnosis, and treatment of AMI in young women.

Keywords: acute myocardial infarction, young women, sex differences, women’s health

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