Heart Truth: Heart Disease Continues to Decline in Women
Heart disease deaths in American women continue to decline according to newly analyzed data announced by National, Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.
Akinso: Heart disease deaths in American women continue to decline according to newly analyzed data announced by National, Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. NHLBI experts examined the preliminary data for 2005, and the data shows that women are living longer, having healthier lives, and dying of heart disease at much later ages than in the past years. Dr. Patrice Desvigne-Nickens, program director with the Heart Failure and Arrhythmia's Branch at the NHLBI's Division of Cardiovascular Diseases, discusses the state of heart disease in women.
Nickens: Heart disease is the number 1 killer of American women. In fact heart disease kills one in four American women and accounts for more deaths than all deaths in cancer combined.
Akinso: In New York City, the Heart Truth campaign, a heart health awareness campaign for women, rolled out the red carpet for the 6th annual Red Dress Collection Fashion Show. The awareness campaign is led by its official national ambassador First Lady Laura Bush and the NHLBI.
Nickens: Our First Lady Laura Bush has been an ambassador for the Heart Truth campaign and she's really been a wonderful spokesperson, describing some of the symptoms of a heart attack and making sure that women are aware, no what to do to take action, and convey that information in a way that's convincing and empowers women to know their risk and take action. It's really simple only five steps, don't smoke, exercise, eat correctly, maintain an ideal weight, and know your numbers; high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes are treatable diseases but their silent. You must know your numbers. So you must see a physician and if necessary take action.
Akinso: More than 20 celebrated women united with America's top designers on the runway to showcase the annual collection of one-of-a-kind Red Dresses and raise awareness of heart disease. Dr. Nickens says the Heart Truth's Red Dress reminds women of the need to protect their heart health, and inspires to take action.
Nickens: The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute partners with the Fashion industry, several top designers and celebrities showcase up to 20 red dresses that were designed for just for the show. The significance of the red dress is that it is a symbol to alert women of the importance of heart disease.
Akinso: Dr. Nickens says just by leading a healthy lifestyle such as following a heart healthy eating plan, getting regular physical activity, maintaining a healthy weight, and not smoking, Americans can lower their risk by as much as 82 percent. For more information about the event and downloadable pictures visit www.hearttruth.gov. This is Wally Akinso at the National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland.
About This Audio Report
Reporter: Wally Akinso
Sound Bite: Dr. Patrice Desvigne-Nickens
Topic: Heart Disease