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Sex and coronary heart disease: the relative probability of dying in hospital [Brief report]

Currie, Craig John and Peters, J. R. 1997. Sex and coronary heart disease: the relative probability of dying in hospital [Brief report]. Heart 77 (4) , pp. 371-372. 10.1136/hrt.77.4.371

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We have recently undertaken a study of diabetic patients that examines the influence of sex on the probability of presenting with coronary heart disease (CHD) related events. This work has been presented in a preliminary form,' and contrasts with the findings of previous work.23 The relation between sex and heart disease is complicated by other factors-for example, in 1993 Petticrew et al showed that women were being discriminated against since they were less likely than men to undergo cardiac surgery.4 Women also appeared to receive treatment such as thrombolysis less frequently than men.5 6 In preparing our analysis of diabetic patients for full publication, it was pointed out by an informal but independent reviewer that one of the assumptions underlying the work, and critical to its validity, was mistaken. The assumption we had made was that women and men had equal probability of being admitted to hospital alive for treatment of cardiac events such as acute myocardial infarction, and therefore that both had equal probability of dying at home or outside hospital. Anecdotal reasons given for this possible source of bias include the hypothesis that general practitioners are less likely to identify chest pain in women as resulting from myocardial infarction (essentially discrimination), and that women themselves were less likely than men to identify cardiac symptoms.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Medicine
Subjects: R Medicine > R Medicine (General)
Publisher: BMJ Publishing Group
ISSN: 1355-6037
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 08:03

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