• Women's Heart Health

  • Women and Heart Disease

    Cold sweats, unusual tiredness, anxiety and loss of appetite might sound like symptoms of hormone changes or getting older but could actually be signs of heart disease, the leading cause of death for women.

    Most people often think of heart disease as a man’s disease, but heart attacks affect more women than men and they are often more severe in women. Because women experience heart disease differently than men, at Avista Adventist Hospital, we believe treatment should be different as well.

    Avista’s Approach to Women’s Heart Health

    Our cardiology specialists are experts in providing female-focused heart care. We understand the unique signs and symptoms for women, which is why we provide women of all ages with prevention, early detection and treatment. Plus, we offer women the expertise of a female cardiologist – one of only a few in Denver.

    Our cardiologists offer women a wide range of diagnostics, customized treatments, non-invasive procedures and endovascular interventions – such as stents, balloons and laser technology - to treat blockages of the arteries.

    Our board-certified Cardiologist specializing in Women’s Heart Care

    CHPG Heart and Vascular – Church Ranch
    : 303-925-4055
    Fax: 303-925-4056

    7233 Church Ranch Blvd.
    Westminster, CO 80021

    Meet Monica Gressianu, MD

    Monica Gressianu, MD & Kimberly Riemer, NPWomen seeking leading-edge heart care will find both a specialist and an advocate in Monica Gressianu, MD. Board certified in Cardiology and Echocardiography, Dr. Gressianu is keenly aware of how heart disease affects women differently than men, and how often signs of heart attack are ignored in women as a result. 

    Helping women get the facts—and care—is the heart of her healing mission, “Our body shapes, our physiologies, our hormones—all of these are factors in experiencing atypical heart symptoms. We respond differently to many therapies; and, during menopause, our entire body and physiology changes. Our risk of heart disease rises. And, unfortunately, at a time when they need it most, many women don’t seek out physicians who can help. “Listening is something I do very well. I want to know the symptoms my patient is having, but I also want to know about her life and what she might be going through. My approach is very non-judgmental, and if a woman wants to do more than conventional care, I’m open to that because we are partners in the care plan. I’m also a big believer in prevention and building confidence in self-care. Helping patients understand the need for exercise, providing advice on nutrition and supplements, managing high blood pressure and cholesterol—those steps can help prevent catastrophic events.”

    Prior to joining CHPG Heart and Vascular – Church Ranch, Dr. Gressianu was in private practice in New Jersey, where she was the frequent recipient of patient care awards. She is a native of Romania and earned her medical degree at the Institute of Medicine and Pharmacy of Bucharest. Later, she relocated to the United States and completed her internal medicine residency and cardiology fellowship at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey in Newark, NJ.

  • Risks Signs Heart Attack

    Women’s Risk Factors:

    • Smoking 
    • High cholesterol 
    • High blood pressure
    • Lack of physical activity
    • Overweight
    • Poor diet
    • Stress
    • Family history
    • Menopause and estrogen loss
    • Birth control pills
    • Excessive alcohol consumption

    Warning Signs of Heart Attack in Women

    Women’s symptoms of heart disease are often more subtle than men’s and may be overlooked as a result. Although women may experience the traditional heart attack symptoms of chest pain or a sharp pain that spreads to the shoulder, neck or arms; it’s also extremely common for women to report symptoms that could be mistaken for the flu such as:

    • Light-headedness or fainting
    • Sweating
    • Indigestion, nausea or vomiting
    • Shortness of breath
    • Deep back pain between the shoulder blades
    • Anxiety
    • Sleep disturbances
    • Weakness or fatigue

    If you experience these symptoms, it is important to call 911 or your doctor, especially if these are new symptoms or if they have become more frequent or severe. 

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