The critical importance of preventive medicine for all people has long
been recognized, as documented in the writings of Hippocrates and Osler.1 Moreover, in preventive health, it is clear that sex
matters, as the 2001 Institute of Medicine report concluded after reviewing
the basis for biological differences in health.2
The goal of preventing cardiovascular disease is similar in men and
women. However, the strategies and recommendations to achieve this goal differ,
as exemplified in the 2004 American Heart Association Guidelines for Cardiovascular
Disease Prevention in Women.3 Although it is
increasingly well known and appreciated that heart disease is the leading
cause of death in both women and men, it is also true that researchers are
increasingly discovering sex differences in how cardiovascular disease may
be prevented and treated.
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