Heart Disease in Women

Women's Heart HealthHeart disease is the leading cause of death for women in the United States. Traditional risk factors for heart disease becoming more prevalent in women include: diabetes, smoking, obesity, physical inactivity, hypertension and high cholesterol. There are other emerging risk factors that may increase your risk for heart disease at younger age, such as pregnancy complications (preterm delivery, hypertensive disorders of pregnancy, gestational diabetes), autoimmune disease, history of cancer treatment and depression. Fortunately, women’s long-term cardiovascular health can be greatly improved when these conditions and risks are identified and treated early.

RWJBarnabas Health’s Heart Disease in Women Program is able to offer these services by combining an unparalleled level of expertise comprised of a full range of diagnostic, treatment and support services.

Requesting an Appointment

Prior to scheduling an appointment with one of our cardiovascular specialists, you may need a referral from your primary care or obstetrical physician. In some cases, you may make a self-referral. For a self-referral, please contact us or make an appointment online.

Request an Appointment

Conditions Treated

Our program is able to treat a variety of cardiac conditions. These include but are not limited to:

Procedures Offered

Your doctor will decide the specific procedure based on several factors, including the type of heart condition you have and how severe it is; your age, medical history and lifestyle; and results of tests performed during your initial evaluation. Consult with your cardiologist for more information.

Meet the Team

Meet the Team Instrumental to our program’s success is our passionate, experienced, and integrated multidisciplinary team comprised of cardiovascular specialists skilled in all aspects of health care. To learn more about our team members, please visit our Heart Disease in Women Team page.

Meet Our Team

Access to the Latest Medical and Clinical Research

RWJBarnabas Health Heart, Vascular and Thoracic team prides itself in providing patients with the opportunity to have access to the latest technology and medical advancements via participation in some of the most renowned clinical studies offered. Clinical studies help bridge research and patient care by evaluating therapies, drugs and diagnostic tools to drive discoveries into clinical practice. To learn more about our clinical trials, please visit our Clinical Trials page.

Women and Hearth Health Brochure

Download our brochure

Improving Heart Health

There are several lifestyle changes you can make to improve your heart health. Our cardiology team can help you create a suitable plan after assessing your condition and risk factors. You may want to consider some of the following options:

  • Weight management – Rather than losing weight, you should focus on managing weight. It’s true that obesity is a major risk factor for heart disease, but ideal weight levels differ from person to person based on body type and medical history. Ask a doctor what your ideal weight goals would be for a healthier heart.

  • Exercise – Physical activity is great for your health overall. Most cardiologists recommend a minimum 30 minutes of moderate physical activity four to five days a week. If you don’t have time for a full 30 minutes, separating it into to 10 or 15 minute bursts can also work.
  • Lower cholesterol and blood pressure – Cutting out cholesterol and fats goes a long way in keeping your heart and arteries healthy. Try to reduce consumption of dairy products and red meats. You may also want to start checking sodium levels on nutrition labels. High sodium intake increases blood pressure. The American heart Association recommends no more than 2.300 milligrams of sodium per day.
  • Healthy diet alternatives – Cholesterol is not all bad. LDL cholesterol (“good” cholesterol) can help reduce your risk of heart disease. High fiber foods such as whole-grain bread are full of LDL cholesterol. Foods high in omega-3’s, such as salmon, are another good choice. Three cups of vegetables and 2 cups of vegetables per day are also recommended to lower blood pressure.
  • Stop smoking – The dangers of smoking are common knowledge these days. In addition to lung disease, smoking can also raise your blood pressure and shrink the coronary arteries. Smoking can also make the lining of blood vessels stickier, making it easier for blood clots to form. If you have numerous heart disease risk factors, you should seriously consider joining a smoking cessation program.