Only one in ten women in the UK aged 50 and above discuss their risk of heart disease when they visit their GP, according to a survey conducted by the British Heart Foundation.
The survey, which involved more than 40,000 UK women, also showed that most are unaware of the symptoms of a heart attack.
A second poll involving 2,829 women revealed that fewer than 50% would dial 999 if they suffered from symptoms of heart attack, such as chest pain.
In addition, 11% reported that they would just go to bed, while 7% said that they would ignore the symptoms and carry on as normal.
British Heart Foundation associate medical director Dr Mike Knapton said the results show serious gaps in the way women are thinking about heart health, and highlight the common myth that heart disease is a middle-aged male health problem.
“It’s vital that us GPs ‘think heart’ for our female patients,” Knapton added.