Transitions Across a Lifetime: Unique Cardiovascular Physiology of Women and Relationship to Cardiovascular Disease Risk

  • Juliana M. Kling
  • Virginia M. Miller
  • Sharon L. Mulvagh


Mortality from cardiovascular disease for women exceeds that of men. This health disparity reflects differences in economic, environmental and psychosocial factors but more importantly the lack of basic knowledge in differences of cardiovascular physiology between men and women that drives surveillance and treatment guidelines for women. Sex differences in disease frequency and presentation are due to sex chromosomes, as well as activational and organizational effects of the sex steroid hormones. This chapter addresses how two conditions unique to women, pregnancy and menopause, affect cardiovascular function and therefore, types, frequency, and expression of cardiovascular pathologies in women.


Cardiovascular disease Estrogen Hormone Menopause Pregnancy 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Juliana M. Kling
    • 1
  • Virginia M. Miller
    • 2
  • Sharon L. Mulvagh
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of General Internal MedicineMayo ClinicScottsdaleUSA
  2. 2.Departments of Surgery and Physiology and Biomedical EngineeringMayo ClinicRochesterUSA
  3. 3.Division of Cardiology, General Internal MedicineMayo ClinicRochesterUSA

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