Blood vessels of women age before those of men

Women’s blood vessels appear to age faster than men’s according to a new study conducted by researchers at the Smidt Heart Institute. Among other things, this study could explain why, with regard to different heart diseases, women heal at different times than men.

The study, published in JAMA Cardiology, shows in particular that the blood arteries, both the larger ones and the smaller ones, seem to age faster, which confirms a different physiology also with regard to the blood system of women than men. Researcher Susan Channing, senior author of the study, together with colleagues analyzed data from 145 blood pressure measurements collected over a period of 43 years from a total of 32,833 patients aged between 5 and 98 years, so a fairly large and diverse database.

Comparing the data of women with those of men, the researchers found that the evolution of the vascular function of females is “very different” from that of males. For example, women showed levels of increased blood pressure earlier in life than men. This means that if the same danger thresholds for hypertension are used for both males and females, a 30-year-old woman with hypertension is still at a higher risk of cardiovascular disease than a man of the same age and with the same level of hypertension.

These are concepts that should make us rethink the methods that are used today to treat the various heart diseases and in general make us rethink female cardiovascular health. Specifically, as Christine Albert, President of the Department of Cardiology at the aforementioned institute, explains, different aspects of today’s cardiovascular therapies must be adapted specifically for women.

Moreover, the results obtained from studies conducted on men cannot be applied directly to women.

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