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Heart attack deaths to increase

30 November 2011 - 1:47pm

Women are at greater risk than men of being killed by a second or third heart attack in Australia, according to new research.

A report by Deloitte Access Economics and commissioned by pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca found that the number of Australians dying from repeat heart attacks is expected to increase by 40 per cent over the next decade, with women affected more than men.

Report author Lynne Pezzullo told the Canberra Times that the risk of death from repeat heart attack was currently almost 21 per cent for women, but was expected to increase to 24 per cent
in the future - partly due to their higher life expectancy.

"It's very much that women are living longer and it’s the number of baby boomer women who over the next 10 years are going to enter in the high-risk age groups," she said.

"While women are at a lower risk of having a heart attack than men, they’re also more likely to die from either the initial event or the repeat event."

The study also predicts that repeat heart attacks will claim the lives of more than 7,500 Australians each year by 2020 - placing an increased demand on up to 9,000 hospital beds.