House Call: Menopause and Heart Disease
It is important for women to know that their risk of developing heart disease increases during and after menopause.
According to the North American Menopause Society, cardiovascular disease remains the leading cause of death for women age 65 and older and is the second leading cause of death among women ages 45 to 64 in the United States and Canada.
Women often experience atypical signs and symptoms of heart disease such as nausea, vomiting, sweating, extreme fatigue or weakness, a feeling of indigestion and/or pain in the neck, jaw or back.
Women should know the risk factors of heart disease which include family history, smoking, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, physical inactivity, obesity and diabetes.
It is important for women who are postmenopausal or going through menopause to get routine cholesterol, diabetes and blood pressure screenings, and to discuss any symptoms or risk factors they have for heart disease with their doctors. Our community is fortunate, as the Women’s Heart Health Initiative is teaming up local primary care physicians, obstetrics and gynecology specialists and cardiologists to increase heart disease awareness, and educate women on signs, risk factors and ways to prevent the disease.
Dr. Michelle Grewal is an obstetrics and gynecology specialist at Physicians for Women of Greensboro and a member of the Cone Health medical staff. Dr. Grewal received her medical degree at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine, and completed her residency in obstetrics and gynecology at the University of California Los Angeles. Dr. Grewal is one of the participating physicians in the Women’s Heart Health Initiative.