EMS delays for cardiac care more likely in women

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - In a year-long study conducted in Dallas County, Texas, women who called 911 for suspected heart-related symptoms had a 52 percent greater likelihood of experiencing delays in emergency medical services (EMS) compared with their male counterparts, even after adjusting for a number of factors.

Delays in EMS care “could lead to harm for a patient with serious heart disease,” Dr. Thomas W. Concannon, who led the study, noted in a statement issued by the American Heart Association.

The data stem from an analysis of 5,887 calls made to 911 from January 1 to December 31, 2004, by people with suspected cardiac symptoms, half of whom were women. The area studied is covered by 98 EMS stations and 29 hospitals.

There were no serious delays in elapsed time from the 911 call to paramedics’ arrival at the scene. Delays began after EMS crews arrived on scene and continued during transport to the hospital.

The average time that EMS spent at the scene was 19.9 minutes, and the average transport time from the scene to the hospital was 10.3 minutes. The median time in EMS care was 34 minutes. Delay in EMS care was defined as greater than 15 minutes beyond median elapsed time; thus, anyone in EMS care for 49 minutes or longer was considered to be delayed.

According to Concannon and colleagues, women arrived at the hospital on average just over 2.3 minutes later than men, “not long enough to be clinically meaningful.”

However, approximately 11 percent of callers, or 647 patients, were delayed 15 minutes or more, which could cause harm, Concannon noted. And, compared with men, women were more than twice as likely to be in the delayed EMS care group.

“We looked at the influence of several patient- and neighborhood-level factors on delays in EMS and the patient’s gender stood out,” noted Concannon, who is assistant professor of medicine at the Institute for Clinical Research and Health Policy Studies at Tufts Medical Center in Boston. “We need to find out why women are delayed and reduce or eliminate the disparity,” he added.

The study is published in the medical journal Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes. In an editorial published with the study, Dr. Joseph P. Ornato, chairman of the Department of Emergency Medicine at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, say possible factors leading to the delay in EMS care for women include a longer time to perform an on-site electrocardiogram (EKG), and gender differences in accepting EMS care and transport or in choice of destination hospital.

The issue of possible existence of gender delay in EMS care is an important one that “deserves follow-up study for a definitive answer,” Ornato wrote.

SOURCE: Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes, January 13, 2009.


Related Posts:

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Many women may not be fully aware of the potential consequences of waiting until later in life to have a baby, a UK study suggests. The study, of 724 women who were either pregnant or having trouble getting pregnant, found that nearly all were aware that age affects the chances of

Full Post: Some women unaware of risks of delaying motherhood

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Older men and younger women fare worse with stomach, or “gastric” cancer than patients in other gender and age groups, research shows. Dr. Sung-Soo Park, from Korea University College of Medicine, Seoul, and co-researchers hypothesized that the difference in disease outcomes is related to sex hormones and suggest that further studies

Full Post: Gender and age impact stomach cancer prognosis

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Some women have the misfortune to suffer numerous miscarriages and are known to have risky pregnancies, but women who suffer even one miscarriage seem to be more likely to have complications in their next pregnancy, Scottish researchers report. “Our work, based on the analysis of pregnancy records of more than 32,000

Full Post: Miscarriage may spell trouble in next pregnancy

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Women younger than age 65 with diabetes tend to have worse cardiovascular risk profiles than diabetic men of the same age, leading to higher death rates following a heart attack, research shows. “The female advantage with fewer cardiovascular events than in men at younger ages is attenuated once a woman has

Full Post: Diabetic women more likely to die after heart attack

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Cancer news stories and public service announcements that call attention to the fact that African Americans are often diagnosed with cancer at later stages and have lower survival rates than whites may discourage African Americans from getting screened for cancer, new research shows. “We have typically assumed that one of the

Full Post: Negative messages keep blacks from cancer tests

Site Navigation

Most Read



  • kinwrite.com@gmail.com