Behind the Blue Examines Women's Heart Health With Dr. Gretchen Wells, Gail Cohen

February is American Heart Health Month, and this past Feb. 3 marked the 14th annual National Wear Red Day for Women. It’s a day designed to call our attention to recognizing heart disease as the No. 1 killer of women in this country, and to raise awareness of women’s overall heart health.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, heart disease is the leading cause of death for women in the United States, and in 2013 was responsible for about one in four female deaths. It’s generally thought of as a “man’s disease,” but heart disease affects genders equally in the U.S., and only 54 percent of women recognize that it is their No. 1 killer. Perhaps most alarming, 64 percent of women who die suddenly of coronary heart disease experience no previous symptoms.

On this episode of Behind the Blue, we talk with Dr. Gretchen Wells, director of the Women’s Heart Program at the UK Gill Heart Institute, and Gail Cohen, a patient who experienced firsthand the dangers of undetected heart disease. We discuss the differences regarding heart health between men and women, the impact of heart disease in Kentucky, and how collaboration across UK’s campus reaps benefits for new and advanced methods of detecting and treating heart disease, as well as preventive steps people can take to improve heart health.

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