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Published:Wednesday | May 2, 2012 | 12:00 AM

Go Red for Women and heart disease

The American Heart Association started an initiative to increase awareness surrounding the incidence of heart disease in women. This worldwide campaign is called 'Go Red for Women' and has been adopted by the World Heart Federation, of which The Heart Foundation of Jamaica is a member.

Go Red for Women is a global campaign which aims to give women a personal and urgent wake-up call about the risk of heart disease.

From April 30 to May 4, The Heart Foundation of Jamaica will be celebrating 'Go Red for Women' with a week of activities geared towards increasing awareness of what is mistakenly conceived to be a 'male disease'.

Knowing about the most common risk factors, signs and symptoms is the first step in fighting this disease and saving women's lives.

Warning signs of heart diseasefor women

Chest pressure, pain or discomfort that comes and goes;

Pain localised to areas such as the arm, shoulder, jaw, stomach or back;

Shortness of breath in the absence of pain;

Nausea or passing out.

Before menopause, a woman's risk of coronary heart disease is lower than a man's. After menopause, this risk increases significantly. There has, however, been an increasing prevalence of heart disease in women before the age of menopause.

Source: Heart Foundation of Jamaica