Women’s Health

The women’s heart program is a comprehensive diagnostic and therapeutic clinic for women with documented or suspected heart disease.  We will see any woman but specifically are interested in the following patients:

  • Women with undifferentiated chest pain who may have microvascular coronary dysfunction or CAD and require work-up and treatment
  • Women with chest pain and/or ACS with documented normal coronary arteries (on catheterization or CT-coronary angiogram) where there is suspicion for microvascular coronary dysfunction (formerly called Syndrome X)
  • Women with multiple visits to the Emergency Room for chest pain with still no definitive diagnosis
  • Women with cardiac disease and other comorbidities such as osteoporosis and menopausal symptoms
  • Women who are post-partum and need to be followed long-term for a diagnosis made during pregnancy (pre-eclampsia, coronary dissection, peri-partum cardiomyopathy, etc.)

Research

Understanding inequities in health-related experiences among mid-life women and men following a heart attack

Following a heart attack people are encouraged to change lifestyle habits, particularly exercise, diet and smoking, to reduce their risk for a future heart attack. Programs are in place to assist people to make these changes, and doctors and nurses in hospitals,
clinics, and offices educate people on how to change their habits. Yet, men and women in their middle years who have been hospitalized for a first heart attack are often not successful in accessing such programs and making these lifestyle changes. In this study, we propose to acquire an understanding of what influences men and women to make such changes, following hospitalization for a first heart attack, from their perspectives as well as those of their caregivers and health professionals. We also plan to determine if making such changes is different for men and women. The results of this research will inform changes to programs and health professional practices so that men and women who have experienced a heart attack will be supported in ways that are meaningful to them in their efforts to change lifestyle habits in order to reduce the risk for a future heart attack.

Sex Differences and Determinants of Health Status Post Acute Myocardial Infarction in Younger Adults

Although cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of mortality, the significance of sex difference in the epidemiology of this disease has only recently received attention. Despite under representation of women in clinical trials, the weight of the evidence suggests important clinical differences between men and women with respect to prevalence, presentation, diagnosis, treatment and
outcomes. However, little is known about why CVD affects women and men differently. An emerging area of interest is the observed higher mortality in younger women following acute myocardial infarction (AMI), percutaneous coronary interventions and coronary artery bypass surgery, compared to younger men. Research in this area suggests this age-sex interaction persists even after adjustment for conventional risk factors. Health status and depression have been shown to be independently associated with mortality, but information on sex differences in these factors is lacking. Our research will, therefore, explore the relevance of non-traditional risk factors (health status, psychosocial factors) in young women and men with AMI.

New UBC professorship focuses on women’s cardiovascular health

Contact

Women’s heart program contact number is 604-875-5487 or fax for referrals is 604-875-5504.

Additional information on the Women’s heart program can be found on www.drtarasedlak.com. Please contact Dr. Tara Sedlak for clinical questions.

Additional information on the women’s cardiovascular health research can be found by contacting Dr. Karin Humphries.

Karin H Humphries, MBA, DSc
Associate Professor, Medicine
UBC-Heart and Stroke Foundation Professor in Women’s Cardiovascular Health
Providence Health Care Research Institute
1081 Burrard Street
Vancouver, BC V6Z 1Y6

Phone: 604-806-8994
Fax: 604-806-9678
E-mail: karin.humphries@ubc.ca

Tara Sedlak, MD
Cardiologist, Vancouver General Hospital
Medical Director, Leslie Diamond Women’s Heart Health Clinic
Clinical Assistant Professor, University of British Columbia
2775 Laurel Street, Level 9, Vancouver, BC, V5Z 1M9
Phone: 604-875-5487
Fax: 604-875-5504
E-mail: Tara.Sedlak@vch.ca

Quick Links

a place of mind, The University of British Columbia

St. Paul`s Hospital
Room 478 Burrard Building
1081 Burrard Street
Vancouver, BC, V6Z 1Y6
UBC Cardiology and Vancouver Acute
Gordon & Leslie Diamond Health Care Centre
2775 Laurel St, 9th Floor
Vancouver, BC, V5Z 1M9

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