Women & Heart Disease

Image of a women grabbing her chest in pain

Symptoms of Heart Disease

While women may experience the classic heart disease symptoms men experience, women are more likely to experience back pain and indigestion, making it harder to diagnose or detect a heart attack. Small vessel disease, which can lead to a heart attack, is also more common in women. This condition may lead to a common symptom of chest pain (angina) but show no major plaque buildup in the major coronary arteries. As a result, women with this condition may not be aware they are at risk of a heart attack.

Cardiovascular disease is the number one cause of death for women in the United States and causes 1-in-3 deaths each year.1

Unique Risk Factors of Heart Disease in Women

Recent studies have shown there are some risk factors of heart disease that uniquely affect women, including increased levels of testosterone prior to menopause, elevated hypertension during menopause, and autoimmune diseases that are more common in women such as rheumatoid arthritis.

Signs and symptoms of heart disease in women include: pain in the chest, neck, arms, or jaw; back pain; stomach pain; shortness of breath; cold sweats; nausea; dizziness; fatigue, heart palpitations; and indigestion. Both men and women can lower their risk of heart disease by staying physically active, eating a heart-healthy diet and not smoking. If you have any concerns about your heart health, please consult with your physician.


Impella® Assists the Heart’s Pumping Function

Impella, the world’s smallest heart pump, is approved by the U.S. FDA for use in patients who have cardiomyopathy, including peripartum cardiomyopathy or myocarditis in the setting of cardiogenic shock, a form of acute heart failure in which the heart suddenly cannot pump enough blood to meet the body’s needs.

Stories of Recovery


Laura Hernandez

After three days of Impella support, Laura’s heart had a full recovery and she returned home.


Jessica Grib

Following a C-section, Jessica developed post-partum cardiomyopathy and went into cardiogenic shock. Impella helped her return home to her new baby.

Image of Impella patient Erin Hanussak with her family

Erin Hanussak

While on Impella 5.0® support, Erin’s native heart recovered and she returned home to her family.


Mother of seven Jara Herron is back to business after spontaneous coronary artery disease scare

Ten days after delivering her daughter, Jara began experiencing severe weakness and difficulty breathing. Paramedics rushed her to St. John Medical Center in Tulsa, Oklahoma, for life-saving care that included Impella.

Is Impella Right for Me?

Answer a few questions to see if you may be a candidate.


  1. Facts About Heart Disease in Women. Go Red for Women, American Heart Association: https://www.goredforwomen.org/en/about-heart-disease-in-women/facts