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Invited Commentary
August 2014

The Case for Sex- and Gender-Specific Medicine

Author Affiliations
  • 1Barbra Streisand Women’s Heart Center, Cedars Sinai Heart Institute, Los Angeles, California
  • 2Institute for Gender in Medicine, Charite University Medicine, Berlin, Germany
  • 3German Cardiovascular Research Center (DZHK), Berlin, Germany
JAMA Intern Med. 2014;174(8):1348-1349. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2014.320

There are numerous differences in cardiovascular disease (CVD) between men and women. Women have a higher prevalence of coronary microvascular dysfunction, heart failure with preserved ejection fraction, Tako-Tsubo syndrome (also known as stress-induced cardiomyopathy), and post–myocardial infarction depression than men. Women also have a greater sensitivity to QT-prolonging medications and higher heart failure mortality with digoxin than men.1,2 A mounting literature further documents important sex differences in pharmacology, including response to β-blockers and angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors.3

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