After I was having shortness of breath and chest pain, a Louisville doctor diagnosed me with anxiety. Two days later, I had a heart attack. Does this count as misdiagnosis?

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KY Women: Are You Suffering Anxiety, or a Misdiagnosed Heart Attack?

Yes, and it’s especially likely if you’re female. Medical research from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services suggests that women who present clear signs of cardiac distress are far less likely to be correctly diagnosed–or treated as aggressively–than men.


Women who go to the emergency room suffering from symptoms of coronary heart disease often leave with a prescription to treat stress or anxiety, even though they exhibited shortness of breath and chest tightness. Strangely, men who have the same symptoms are more likely to receive a cardiac-related diagnosis, delaying necessary treatment and shortening lifespans in female sufferers.


Here are just a few staggering facts on women and heart disease:


  • According to the National Coalition for Women with Heart Disease, women receive just 33 percent of all angioplasties, stents and bypass surgeries, 28 percent of defibrillator implants and 36 percent of open-heart surgeries.
  • Despite the fact that more women die of heart disease each year than men, only a quarter of subjects in cardiac studies are female.
  • The American Heart Association estimates that 75 percent of men will survive their first heart attack, but only 62 percent of women do.


If someone you love suffered a serious injury or early death due to a misdiagnosis, the trusted Louisville medical malpractice attorneys at Gray and White can help. We can investigate the cause of the error and hold hospitals and staff accountable for causing your relative’s distress. Call us today at 800.634.8767 or fill out the contact form on the top of this page to find out your legal options in your FREE, one-on-one consultation.