Cardiovascular disease: socioeconomic disadvantage affects women more than men

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The finding is based on data from 22 million people from North America, Europe, Asia and Australasia.

Tailored interventions may be needed to reduce socioeconomic inequalities in cardiovascular disease (CVD) outcomes in women.

That’s according to the authors of a major new international study which reports that women from low socioeconomic backgrounds are significantly more likely to suffer from coronary heart disease (CHD) than disadvantaged men.

Researchers from the George Institute for Global Health reviewed 116 studies to assess effects of levels of education, income, job type and postcode on the risk of cardiovascular disease. As expected, they found that lower socioeconomic status was associated with increased risk of CVD in women. For CHD, there was a significantly greater excess risk (24 per cent) associated with lower educational attainment in women compared with men.

Dr Sanne Peters, Research Fellow at the Institute, said the finding demonstrates the need for sex-specific research to discover why disproportionally more women than men are suffering from CVD in disadvantaged communities.

“This is beyond just closing the gender gap. We also need to ensure that everyone has the best possible health outcomes and treatment. It should not be dependent on your level of education or where you happen to live,” he said.

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