Follow me down the rabbit hole for a second:
I’ve long wondered if this - that women don’t recognize the symptoms of a heart attack in themselves, and consequently don’t get the fast care that is vital for heart attack survival - is the reason heart disease is the #1 killer in women. Women statistically take better care of themselves health-wise, than men do. Women see doctors more frequently and are more likely to follow those doctors’ recommendations closely. Why would both men and women have the same most common cause of death?
Heart attack symptoms in men are well known. We all know what it means when a guy on TV clutches his chest or left arm and falls over. This scene is often followed by a rush to the emergency room in an ambulance, and a shirtless guy being shocked back to sinus rhythm with the electric paddles. “CLEAR!” Right? Everyone knows that’s what a heart attack looks like. Because of TV.
Except you can’t show a topless woman on TV - and you can’t defibrillate a woman in a bra. So victims of heart attacks on TV are *always* male. Did you know that a woman having a heart attack is more likely to have back or jaw pain than chest or left arm pain? I didn’t - because I’ve never seen a woman having a heart attack. I’ve been trained in CPR and Advanced First Aid by the Red Cross over 15 times in my life, the videos and booklets always have a guy and say the same thing about clutching his chest and/or bicep.
And people laugh when I tell them women are still invisible in this world.
I had never given this too much thought, but this is really fascinating.