Study supports disparity in care and clinical management of heart failure in women

Women had significantly worse interstitial pulmonary edema outcomes in the emergency room.

A total of 4461 participants were included in the analysis. Photo: Shutterstock.

A study based on epidemiological data from the Puerto Rico Cardiovascular Surveillance Study evaluated hospitalizations associated with cardiovascular diseases in the country in 21 hospital institutions, evaluating clinical care for this type of prevalent condition, which among the data it produced, maintains that Hispanic Puerto Rican women with heart failure (HF) presented higher hospital lethality compared to with men.

The study was based on antecedents that indicate that women receive limited attention regarding the management of cardiovascular conditions compared to men, since they maintain that health professionals tend to be less “aggressive” when treating women and before the lack of data and the limited studies that evaluate the possible disparities that could exist between medical care by gender versus cardiovascular conditions on the Island, such as Heart Failure.

Heart failure is a condition in which the heart can no longer pump oxygen-rich blood to the rest of the body efficiently.

The study, published in the American College of Cardiologyfurther evaluated data from hospitalized patients with a primary diagnosis of heart failure between 2007 and 2011. A total of 4461 participants were included in the analysis.

Among the most notable results, it states that women were significantly less likely to be prescribed angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (ACEi) or angiotensin receptor blockers and beta-blockers.

Similarly, although men and women may present HF symptoms similarly, women had significantly worse findings suggestive of heart failure and had higher in-hospital mortality compared with men.

For this reason, the study concludes that Hispanic Puerto Rican women with HF had higher rates of in-hospital mortality than men and that this could be attributed to significant differences in symptom management in this patient population.

Our data show that Hispanic Puerto Rican women received less medication during hospitalization and at discharge, compared to their male counterparts. In addition, men and women appear to have similar heart failure symptoms, but women had significantly worse ER outcomes for interstitial pulmonary edema, part of the study’s conclusion supports.

Access the study here.

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