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5 Chronic Diseases That Are More Common in Women Than Men

Mar 02, 2024
5 Chronic Diseases That Are More Common in Women Than Men
As a woman, it can sometimes feel difficult to squeeze in time to take care of your own health in the midst of a jam-packed schedule. But, women are much more likely to deal with chronic disease than men. Find out why here.

Women in society today are doing more than ever. More and more women are taking over executive office positions, and the population on college campuses is predominantly female. In addition, women tend to be primary caregivers for both their children and any ailing parents. 

Unfortunately, in the midst of all this busyness, women are much more likely to struggle with at least one chronic disease, if not multiple. In fact, studies suggest that women are almost 10% more at risk for chronic disease than men are. 

One of the best things you can do for your health as a woman is educate yourself on how to prevent or reduce your risk for chronic illnesses. That’s why our team at HealthStone Primary Care Partners in Hollywood, Florida, wants to review the chronic diseases that are more commonly seen in women.

In this blog, we review five specific chronic diseases that affect women more than men.

1. Cardiovascular disease

While usually thought of as affecting mostly men, women actually have a much higher mortality rate than men when it comes to cardiovascular disease. Recent studies have shown that women are much more likely to pass away within one year of having a heart attack than men, and women are much less likely to receive prompt care in response to any type of heart issue.

In addition, postmenopausal women are at a much higher risk for cardiovascular problems due to increased blood pressure, elevated glucose levels, and a slowed metabolism, all of which can put you at risk for a heart attack and other heart issues.

2. Osteoporosis

Both men and women can develop osteoporosis; however, it’s much more likely to occur in women who are postmenopausal. This is because the loss of estrogen after menopause starts to take a toll on your bone health and density, putting you at a much higher risk of bone fractures.

3. Rheumatoid arthritis

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disorder that happens when your body’s immune system gets confused and starts attacking healthy cells. RA primarily affects your joints, but it can also affect other areas. 

While RA develops in both men and women, women are three times as likely to have the condition. Research tells us that women tend to get it around the time of menopause due to fluctuating hormones. 

4. Lupus

Lupus is another autoimmune disorder that attacks healthy cells in your body. When you have lupus, your immune system can't differentiate viruses, bacteria, and germs from healthy cells and tissues. 

This lifelong condition is seen in women much more than men, and it can put you at a higher risk for developing other chronic conditions such as cardiovascular disease and osteoporosis.

5. Migraine headaches

A migraine is a neurological disorder that causes debilitating headaches along with other symptoms such as nausea and sensitivity to light and sound. Migraine headaches are often considered a condition that primarily affects women, and research backs that up. 

In fact, 70% of people who suffer from migraine headaches are women. These painful headaches are often associated with fluctuating hormones, which is why they’re probably so much more prevalent in women.

If you do have any of these chronic diseases, make sure to come in to see our team for expert primary care and chronic disease management. To schedule an appointment, call our office at 954-466-0850 or book online.