Stress and Hearts, Men and Women

hb20130405By Staff Reports

(Victor Valley)– From the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, I’m Ira Dreyfuss with HHS HealthBeat.

Researchers say men and women react differently to stress, and the differences can affect their hearts.

At Duke University School of Medicine, researcher Zainab Samad saw this in data on 254 men and 56 women with a history of reduced blood flow to the heart muscle, called ischemic heart disease. They were told to do something that would cause stress, such as describing a time when they were angry.

“Women exhibited greater decrease in positive emotions and a greater increase in negative emotions; men had greater blood pressure and heart rate responses.”

She says the women also showed more signs of ischemia and of blood cell issues that could lead to clots.

The study in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology was supported by the National Institutes of Health.

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HHS HealthBeat is a production of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. I’m Ira Dreyfuss.

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