The reports, issued by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), revealed that in the last 20 years, the diagnosis and treatment of CHD has often excluded or underrepresented both women and minorities, and as a result, the tests and therapies used to treat women with CHD are based on studies conducted predominately in middle-aged men.
"Coronary heart disease is the number-one killer of women, claiming the lives of 250,000 women each year. Yet as a result of the disparity in research, when a woman goes to the doctor for preventive, diagnostic, or therapeutic management of coronary heart disease, her physician must make recommendations on inadequate evidence-based data," said Nanette K. Wenger, M.D., professor of medicine in the division of cardiology at Emory University Medical School.
"These reports are a wake-up call to the medical research community that a revised methodology for clinical research is needed. Studies must be conducted to investigate everyone's unique health needs, including women and minorities. But the only way this can be done is to first include those who have been excluded, and then report results for women and men separately. Even in studies where women have been included, sex-specific data reporting is requisite," said Wenger, vice chair of the Society for Women's Health Research board of directors.
The reports, Results of Systematic Review of Research on Diagnosis and Treatment of Coronary Heart Disease in Women and Diagnosis and Treatment of Coronary Heart Disease in Women: Systematic Reviews of Evidence on Selected Topics, concluded that even though funding agencies appear to h
Contact: Amy Hoskins
Society for Women's Health Research