Ladies, there may come a time in the not-too-distant future when you’re going to have to argue with a doctor. And let me be clear about this confrontation. It’s a literal fight for your life.
Oh, and men, if you have any ladies in your life that you care about, you need to hear this as well. Because you might need to speak up too.
New research finds women are getting the shaft when it comes to treatment for a heart attack. In fact, they’re on the losing end of just about EVERY possible metric for cardiac care during and after a suspected heart attack.
Compared to men, when women show up at the hospital, they’re less likely to be:
- seen promptly
- triaged urgently
- tested thoroughly
- admitted for observation
This mix of delays and poor decisions in the emergency room can lead to serious complications and even death. So today, I want to let you in on what to say and do when it matters most so you, or your loved ones, don’t end up on that frightening list.
Do THIS at the FIRST SIGN of a heart attack
At the very first sign of a potential heart attack, pick up the phone and call 911. Don’t mess around. Don’t “wait for it to pass.” And certainly, don’t start calling around to friends and family to see what they think.
Call 911 because the best way to get prompt attention in a hospital is to arrive in the back of an ambulance.
But even then, you may need to start throwing some elbows around in the ER. Because the new study finds men who arrive via ambulance get faster treatment than women. In fact, on average, women wait for an infuriating (and potentially deadly) extra 11 minutes.
That’s precious time when you need it most. And it goes against the guidelines, which say you’re supposed to get an electrocardiogram (EKG) within 10 minutes of arriving in the ER with heart attack symptoms.
The new study looked at women under 55 years old who suffer heart attacks at a surprising rate. But we’ve seen the same thing before… repeatedly… with older women, too.
DEMAND the care you deserve in the ER
ER docs still seem to think a heart attack is a “man’s problem.” Women who come in with similar symptoms are often dismissed as simply suffering from digestive problems… stress… anxiety… or just about anything else.
That’s why, despite being scared and possibly in pain, you need to stand up for yourself in the ER, ladies. Demand that EKG if you have to. And men, if it’s your loved one battling the distressing symptoms of a heart attack, be the squeaky wheel and INSIST she has the testing done immediately.
You can also ask for a troponin test. It looks for a protein released into the blood when the heart is damaged, and it’s another good indicator of a potential heart attack.
Ladies, I know it’s not fair you have to do all this for yourself. After all, YOU are the patient. But the reality is you’re going to have to be ready to take matters into your own hands and advocate for yourself if necessary.
And one more thing. Everyone knows about the chest pain that often marks a heart attack, of course. But women can experience other unusual symptoms, too. And sometimes, there’s no chest pain at all.
Learn how to spot those other symptoms – and what to do about them – right here.