7 Medical Conditions That Affect Women More Than Men

You knew that there were some sickness that affect more females than humen; breast and osteoporosis, for example, are two cancers we hear about year in and year out.

But what about the other ones? What about the multitude of conditions that mamas, sisters, daughters, and grandmothers tend to develop more frequently than dads, friends, sons, and grandpas? Women are prone to everything from Carpal tunnel syndrome to multiple sclerosis to stroke, and its about day we knew what to look out for.

We spoke to Dr. Nieca Goldberg, Director of the Joan H. Tisch Center for Womens Health at New York Universitys Langone Medical Center, about ailments that principally target femaleswhat they are, why women get them, and what we can do about them.

Thyroid Disease

Odds are youve considered a woman with a smiley face-shaped scar at the base of her neck, a.k.a. the hallmark of thyroid surgery. You may even have one yourself, since, according to the American Thyroid Association, about 12 or 13 percent of women will be affected by a thyroid ailment at some phase in their own lives. “Women are seven times more likely to develop thyroid issues than humen, ” says Dr. Goldberg, “and women should understand that the therapy is very important because the thyroid is responsible for governing metabolism.”

Conditions like hypothyroidism( tirednes, weight gain, etc .) and hyperthyroidism( tirednes, weight loss, etc .) come with a host of symptoms that can be easily dismissed or mistaken for other conditions, constructing thyroid illnes easy to overlook. Theres good news, though, says Dr. Goldberg: “Because theres more awareness, more women are being screened.” And that means treatment is more accessible than ever, as well.

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American Thyroid Association


“Heart disease is the leading killer of women, ” says Dr. Goldberg, “and only 1 in 5 girls realise she is at risk.” One chief determining factor is hypertension, a.k.a. high blood pressure, and before age 55, men are likelier to have it. “But as girls get older, ” she says, “their blood pressure goes up because their blood vessels arent as flexible.” By age 65, girls overtake men. Ten years later, the gulf is sizable: About 4 of 5 U.S. women are hypertensive, versus 2 of 3 humen.

While genetics play a role in your odds of developing the condition, your physical wellbeing is a big determinant. “There are things that improve blood vessel flexible, such as feeing right and exercising, ” says Dr. Goldberg. The key is to start early: “Studies that say that women who go into menopause resulting a healthy lifestylewho maintain it through menopausego to the hospital less.”

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American Heart Association


Until age 75, more humen have strokes than females. Between 75 and 85, girls catch up. Then, after age 85, far more females have strokes, making it the fourth-leading cause of death among American females, outrankingdiabetes and even Alzheimers Disease. And that’s not all: Across all ages, women who survive cerebrovascular accidents are likelier to have recurrent strokes and become disabled after an event.

A big part of the difference in deaths is simple life expectancy; older people are more likely to suffer a stroke, and American girls outlive humen by five years on average, to age 81. That means, all told, 425,000 U.S. females will have a stroke this year, versus 380,000 humen.

The silver lining in all this? Stroke deaths are declining overall. According to the American Heart Association, “From 2001 to 2011, the relative rate of stroke demise fell by 35.1% and the actual number of stroke demises declined by 21.2%. ” And that’s a positive development for everybody.

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National Stroke Association

Alzheimer’s Disease

Alzheimer’s Disease is a double whammy for women. Not merely have studies received that our health deteriorations faster, but our chances of developing AD are much higher than menalmost 2 to 1. In fact, in 2013, Alzheimers killed around 59,000 women compared to about 26,000 humen.

While some of it has to do with life expectancyolder people develop Alzheimers more, and women live longermedical experts are still trying to piece together the gender divergence. “Right now we know that there is abnormal buildup of proteins[ in women ], ” says Dr. Goldberg.Hormonal interactions and lifestyle changes are also being explored, but little is to be able to declared definitively.

What is known, however, is that a healthy lifestyle could help ward off Alzheimers, and as a result, dementia: “There are emerging examines that show that people who are physically active help improve their brain function. Its important to eat less processed foods for overall health, toofruit, vegetables, and whole grains.” Good ol diet and exert does it again.

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Alzheimers Association


Mysterious, awful headaches that can set a person out of commission for days at a time, migraines affect three women for every one human, and up to a one-quarter of all women, period. Hormonal changes are known to be involved, though the exact cause of the ache hasnt been pinpointed yet. “Different people with migraines have different triggers, ” says Dr. Goldberg. “It could be perfume, altered in humidity,[ or even] food, like red wine.”

Take heart, though: “Sometimes girls are more likely to get their migraines around their menstrual periods, ” says Dr. Goldberg. “So, as women get older and run through menopause, some women who tend to get migraines dont tend to get them frequently.” Three cheers for menopause!

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The Migraine Trust

Autoimmune Diseases

“Autoimmune Diseases” is an umbrella word for a group of over 100 chronic illnesses including rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, and Graves Disease, in which the body essentially turns on itself. About 75 percent of people affected are girls, though for some sickness, like lupus, the numbers are more like 90 percentage. And while many autoimmune illness have a genetic component, “We dont really understand the reason why girls are disproportionately affected, ” says Dr. Goldberg.

Beyond the often debilitating symptoms links with each respective condition, autoimmune diseases have another nefarious side effect: “Those inflammatory conditions also increase a women risk for heart disease.”

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