I wonder if anyone has any experience or knows of any research that looks at the differences between diagnosis, treatment and how males/females have been affected by AF?
Do women generally experience AF differently?
Are they not taken as seriously as men by the medical profession?
Does anxiety play a bigger role in women than in men and is that maybe because they feel they are not taken seriously?
Before i get inundated with indignant men - I also know and respect that men suffer just as badly from anxiety as women but that is not what I am asking.
I have seen and talked to many women dismissed as ‘over sensitive’, ‘over- reactive’, hysterical’ or ‘over anxious’ and not given tests for heart disease simply because they are women and didn’t ‘fit’ the ‘criteria’ written for a specific condition however - recent research on CVD has shown that women often present with entirely different symptoms to men and as all the research and treatments were based on a male experience, many more women died from CVD than should have done because they experienced different symptoms or treatments which worked for men, didn’t for women.
I ask because I note that over the years some of our male sufferers seem to be much more ‘fact’ based and that some of our female members have subsequently felt quite dismissed by some comments and have left the forum because of it so I believe there maybe a blind gender bias out there and if it happens on such a helpful, open forum as this where the majority of people are well meaning and wanting to support others yet still causing offence, then it must be happening everywhere.
If you are a woman who has felt dismissed on this forum or by the medics in any way I would be very interested in hearing your experience. Do you think gender perception plays a role and if so what has led you to believe this?
I know Bob has mentioned this in passing before and said that he thought that women tend to put their ‘face’ on, dress up before going tot he doctor so therefore look well whereas men may not. Could that be a factor in how AF is regarded?
I was very struck by a lady who posted on another thread recently who had family to look after so just felt she had to ‘get on with it’ as she prioritised their welfare over her own - a trait again more associated with the female of the species.
I would be very interested in your thoughts which I hope will be kind and respectful of the genuine and serious nature of this enquiry.
Best wishes - CD.