Dr. Richard Fogoros:
Dr. Rich, let’s talk about women who smoke, are on birth control and their increased chances risk of contracting heart disease over their lifetime. Talk to me about that.
Well, you know, in a typical non-smoking woman, the risk of heart disease is pretty low until age 55 or menopause, then it goes up rapidly. But one way of getting heart disease very early is to smoke. Smoking is bad in men and women but it’s particularly bad for some reason that no one understands, in women. It increases the risk of heart disease more in women than in men.
Now that risk is greatly multiplied if you have a family history of heart disease and especially if you take birth control pills.