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Gender Disparities In Heart Attack Treatment: Women More Likely To Die

One-third (33.5%) of female heart attack patients receive surgery or angioplasty compared to nearly half (45.6%) of men, and among heart attack patients receiving an intervention such as coronary bypass surgery or angioplasty, women had a 30% higher death rate compared to men, reports HealthGrades.

The findings are based on an analysis of more than 5 million Medicare patient records from 2007 to 2009 and focused on 16 of the most common procedures and diagnoses among women.

The most noticeable disparities were in cardiovascular care. Heart disease is the #1 killer of women in America, surpassing all forms of cancer combined, the company said in a press release.

After adjusting for age and comorbidities, women had a higher risk of mortality than men for angioplasty (20.6%), resection/replacement of abdominal aorta (34.5%), coronary bypass surgery 35.2% and valve replacement surgery (44.5%).

The company also compared how hospitals performed based on its HealthGrades Women’s Health in American Hospitals report, in which it identified 170 of the nation’s 5,000 hospitals that excelled in treating women.

Compared to those treated at poor-performing hospitals, female patients at Women’s Health Excellence Award hospitals had a 40.56% lower risk-adjusted mortality across nine cardiac, pulmonary and vascular-based diagnoses and procedures and a 16.13% lower risk-adjusted rate of complications across five orthopedic procedures.

An additional 41,025 women over the age of 65 could have potentially survived their hospitalization and 8,558 could have avoided a major complication if all hospitals had performed at the highest level described in HealthGrades’ report.

*This blog post was originally published at ACP Internist*


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