According to the results of a new study, young women who suffer from depression are twice more at risk to heart attack or to die prematurely.
Dr. Amit Shah of Emory University (Atlanta), said: "Women in the age group under 55 years are more likely to suffer depression, so this may be one of the" hidden "risk factors that may help explain why women die at a disproportionately higher rate than men after a heart attack." A group of researchers evaluated symptoms of depression in 3237 people with known or suspected heart disease.
Over the next three years, the researchers found: women age 55 and younger are twice as likely to suffer a heart attack, die or require operations if they were moderately or severely depressed. Each increase of one point in the symptoms of depression in young women was associated with a seven percent increase in heart disease. In men and older women, symptoms of depression did not predict cardiac problems.
Women aged 55 and younger are 2.17 times more likely to suffer from a heart attack, die of heart disease or require artery surgery if they had moderate or severe depression, compared with those who were not depressed.
Younger women were 2.45 times more likely to die from any cause during the observation period if they had moderate or severe depression.
Professor Shah says: "the great depression Itself is a reason to take action, but knowing that it is associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease and death, people should seek help. Providers should ask more questions. They need to know that young women are particularly vulnerable to depression and it can increase the risk of heart disease".