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Work stress increases heart attack risk for women


Most women know that heart attack and heart disease is the number one killer for their gender. But most women probably don’t realize that women with high job strain are 67% more likely to experience a heart attack and 38% more likely to have a cardiovascular event than women who enjoy their work stress-free.

Does not include fear of job loss

The research team was led by Dr. Michelle A. Albert of Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School. Job insecurity and fear of job loss was considered a different category from high job strain. They did not find any correlation between job insecurity and long-term cardiovascular disease risk.

Identify and minimize early

“Elevated job strain, a form of psychological stress, has long term cardiovascular health effects in women and could suggest the need for health care providers to incorporate assessment of and identification of useful interventions that minimize the effects of job strain,” said Dr. Albert.

Employers need to get involved

Additionally, employers should recognize that stress may negatively impact the health of their female work force and put interventions in place to help them. The cost of lost productivity, the cost of an actual medical event and the cost to replace the employee even temporarily represents significant lost income.

This study surveyed over 22,000 female health professionals in the US over 10 years. The data was self-reported and included job characteristics as well as personal health information. Based on the data, researchers found that higher job strain correlated to increased risk of cardiovascular disease.

Source: MedicalNewsToday, PLoS ONE

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