Connecting the Links to Woman with Cardiovascular Disease

Tuesday, 14 July 2009: 4:05 PM

Maria C. Henderson-Everhardus, RN, MS, ANP
Nursing, St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital, Houston, TX
Judith McFarlane, DrPH
College of Nursing, Texas Woman's University, Houston, TX
Lene Symes, PhD, RN
College of Nursing, Texas Woman's University - Houston Center, Houston, TX

Learning Objective 1: Identify tools to screen woman for abuse, depression and post traumatic stress. Woman who have been abused have a high incidence of having depression.

Learning Objective 2: Advocate for policy change, to entrust clinic, office and hospital nurses to perform depression and post-traumatic stress screening in conjunction with cardiovascular risk screening.

Many nights, Ellen and many woman like her, awaken from nightmares, perspiring and chest pain, only to attribute these symptoms of menopause or extreme axiety. An estimated 2.4 million Americans are hospitalized each year with cardiovascular symptoms. Woman have a higher mortality and morbidity rate than compared to men, yet have increased rates of depression. The purpose of this study was to evaluate if there was a relationship between mental health, as measured by symptoms of depression and post-traumatic stress, and biological measures of inflammatory protein levels in woman who were hospitalized with acute coronary symptoms. In a prospective observational cohort, repeated measures study, 45 adult females were evaluated at hospitalization, 3month, 6month and 12 month intervals. The findings of the study showed that women with cardiovascular disease who were abused had more symptoms of depression p=0.004 and post traumatic stress disorder p=0.003. In conclusion, nurses are the key to being patient advocates and implementing abuse, depression, PTSD screening with all patients who present with cardiovascular disease.