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Why doctors miss heart disease in female patients

Heart disease is clearly an issue for both men and women. All types of cancer combined don't take as many lives every year.

However, it may especially be a problem for women. Fewer men die annually from heart disease. Plus, some studies have found -- perhaps contributing to the high death rates -- that doctors are six times as likely to miss the issue and send women home from the ER when they need treatment.

Why does this happen? There are a few reasons. One is simply that the symptoms for men and women tend to be different. Women often have indigestion, nausea, fatigue, and trouble breathing. Men, however, have severe chest pains. Doctors may not realize the two are the same issue.

Women may also not realize the problem, as experts note they may also think they should have chest pains if they're having a heart attack, and they might wait longer to go to the ER than men.

However, delays aren't only caused by those who are suffering from heart disease. A study carried out by the University of Michigan discovered that the average wait time for women -- before emergency heart surgery -- is 13 minutes longer than it is for men. Every minute counts during a heart attack, but this stat indicates that many doctors don't even realize they're treating heart attacks for far longer with female patients.

Have you lost a loved one because the doctors didn't see the signs and failed to diagnose a heart attack? This happens more often than many people realize, and it's important to know if you have a right to compensation.

Source: Prevention, "7 Diseases Doctors Miss," Alexis Jetter, accessed April 11, 2017

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