The Link Between Family History and Heart Diseases

The Link Between Family History and Heart Diseases

The Link Between Family History and Heart Diseases

A new research study that looks into the relationship between heart disease and family history has just been published in Circulation: Cardiovascular Genetics, a medical journal of the American Heart Association.

One of the highlights of the study was finding out that women have a higher stroke risk and risk of heart attack if their mother has had a stroke. The study looked at a group of over 2,200 patients and the female patients with heart problems were found to be more likely to have mothers who had had a stroke as opposed to fathers who had.

The results of the study indicate that the inheritability of various arterial vascular diseases is sex specific, particularly in cerebral and coronary arteries. The Oxford Vascular Study had patients included in it that had experienced unstable angina, a heart attack, a transient ischemic attack or a stroke. This is the first time that a study has investigated the connection between heart and stroke disease in a relative by using the patients sex and the relatives sex as guidelines.

When the same group of patients was studied previously, researchers determined that if a mother had a heart attack before the age of 65 then the daughter was at increased risk of the same thing happening. The stroke history of mothers also connected to the daughters risk in other research.

It is important to understand risk factors that are gender specific because although women have a lower risk of having a heart attack they are at greater risk than men of dying of one.


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