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Korean Circ J. 2018 Sep;48(9):792-812. English. Review. https://doi.org/10.4070/kcj.2018.0249
Regitz-Zagrosek V .
CHARITÉ Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Institute of Gender in Medicine and CCR, and DZHK (partner site Berlin), Berlin, Germany. vera.regitz-zagrosek@charite.de
Abstract

Biological sex (being female or male) significantly influences the course of disease. This simple fact must be considered in all cardiovascular diagnosis and therapy. However, major gaps in knowledge about and awareness of cardiovascular disease in women still impede the implementation of sex-specific strategies. Among the gaps are a lack of understanding of the pathophysiology of women-biased coronary artery disease syndromes (spasms, dissections, Takotsubo syndrome), sex differences in cardiomyopathies and heart failure, a higher prevalence of cardiomyopathies with sarcomeric mutations in men, a higher prevalence of heart failure with preserved ejection fraction in women, and sex-specific disease mechanisms, as well as sex differences in sudden cardiac arrest and long QT syndrome. Basic research strategies must do more to include female-specific aspects of disease such as the genetic imbalance of 2 versus one X chromosome and the effects of sex hormones. Drug therapy in women also needs more attention. Furthermore, pregnancy-associated cardiovascular disease must be considered a potential risk factor in women, including pregnancy-related coronary artery dissection, preeclampsia, and peripartum cardiomyopathy. Finally, the sociocultural dimension of gender should be included in research efforts. The organization of gender medicine must be established as a cross-sectional discipline but also as a centered structure with its own research resources, methods, and questions.

Copyright © 2019. Korean Association of Medical Journal Editors.