Diabetes Increases Risk of Heart Failure in Women

Does Diabetes Increase Risk of Heart Failure in Women?

A new study has found that diabetes increases risk of heart failure in women more than in men.
According to new study, women with diabetes have higher risks of developing heart failure than their male counterparts. Diabetes is one of the leading causes of death globally. Recent research has shown that people with diabetes have a higher risk of developing heart failure. Before now, researchers are unaware of the role gender plays in diabetics developing heart failure.
For the study to establish that diabetes increases risk of heart failure in women, researchers compared roughly 12 million men and women. They discovered that women with type 1 diabetes had a 47 percent higher risk of heart failure compared with men with type 1 diabetes. Also, women with type 2 diabetes had a 9 percent higher risk of getting heart failure than men with type 2 diabetes. This result is from a study published in May 2019 in Diabetologia
The lead researcher at the George Institute for Global Health in Newton, Australia, Toshiaki Ohkuma, PhD, said:
“The increased risk of heart failure succeeding a diabetes diagnosis is considerably higher in women than men, which highlights the importance of intensive prevention and treatment of diabetes in women.”
READ ALSO: Symptoms Of Type 1 And Type 2 Diabetes
It is yet unclear what could be the cause for the difference, but scientists where able to come up with some theories.
The pre-diabetes period which is marked by period when blood sugar levels are high but you may not have diabetes symptoms yet, may be longer in women by as much as two years, which may be connected to greater risk of heart failure.
Symptoms of heart attacks in women are not well diagnosed and often go without treatment, which may also lead to a bigger chance of heart failure among women.
An endocrinologist, Robert Busch MD, said the symptoms of heart attack in women are less known than the symptoms in men. This is probably because many women experience silent heart attacks. Since the first attack is untreated, the second heart attack is often more deadly than the first.
READ ALSO: Heart Attacks More Severe in Morning than Night, Study Finds
According to the researchers of the study that diabetes increases risk of heart failure in women, gender differences in managing diabetes could strengthen these links. This is because factually women have had poorer control of blood sugar than men.
“More research needs to be conducted to understand the mechanisms supporting the excess risk of heart failure caused by diabetes, particularly type 1 in women.

Preventing Diabetes

Doctors are well aware of the relationship between heart failure and diabetes and, according to Dr. Busch, “Given this close relationship, we try to make sure to treat diabetes while protecting and caring for the heart.”
Steps you can take to cut down your chances of developing heart failure includes:
  • Monitor your blood sugar and take all diabetes medications as prescribed. Consult your doctor regularly to check if your prescription needs updating.
  • Monitor your blood pressure. For people with diabetes, a systolic pressure of 130 to 140 and diastolic pressure of around 90 are ideal.
  • Watch your cholesterol. Endeavor to regularly monitor your LDL cholesterol (bad cholesterol) levels. Your doctor may prescribe statin drugs to help lower your chances of developing heart disease.
  • Maintain a healthy diet and regular exercise routine. Avoid high-fat and high-carb foods. See your doctor before beginning any new exercise programs to ensure your heart is not affected by physical stress.

 

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