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Health Team

Study: Women may face harder recovery after a heart attack

Posted February 27, 2015

A new study found that younger women do not recover as well as men after a heart attack.

Sharon Bond, 51, said the world was turned upside down four years ago when she had a heart attack.

Doctors told Bond that her heart muscles had grown too thick and she needed open heart surgery.

She said she was stressed in the months that followed, worried she would have another heart attack.

"The recovery process was really hard for me," she said.

A new study finds that stress may be the reason young and middle aged women have a worse recovery than men after a heart attack.

Dr. Nieca Goldberg said when people are stressed, anxious, or depressed, they find it difficult to start an exercise program or change their diet.

"Those are two very important things that you have to do to prevent a recurring heart attack," Goldberg said.

Goldberg suggested that women work with their doctors to have a discussion about their stress level.

"It's a traumatic experience," Bond said. "Just seek out a psychologist and have someone to talk to."

Bond said she is now doing all she can to protect her heart. She has lost 30 pounds since her heart attack by eating healthy and exercising.

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