Gender differences in the presentation and management of acute coronary syndromes: a national sample of 1365 admissions

Background Gender differences in presentation and management of acute coronary syndromes (ACS) are well established internationally. This study investigated differences in a national Irish sample. Design Cross-sectional survey. Methods All centres (n= 39) admitting cardiac patients to intensive/coronary care provided information on 25 consecutive acute myocardial infarction patients and other ACS patients admitted concurrently (n= 1365 episodes). Patient data was analyzed in terms of those with prior ACS/revascularization, and those without. Results Men with prior established ACS/revascularization were twice as likely to have received revascularization procedures (coronary artery bypass graft or percutaneous coronary intervention) prior to admission when controlling for age, total cholesterol and insurance status [odds ratio (OR) 1.97, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.18–3.29, P = 0.011]. No gender differences were seen in acute-phase reperfusion (OR 0.96, 95% CI 0.76–1.24, P >0.05) or antiplatelet therapy (OR 0.99, 95% CI 0.69–1.41, P > 0.05). For patients with prior ACS/revascularization, men were twice as likely to receive statins on discharge after adjustment for age and total cholesterol (OR 1.94, 95% CI 1.02–3.71, P= 0.045). Conclusions Women were treated differently to men. Fewer women with a positive history of ACS received revascularization prior to current admission and fewer women were prescribed lipid-lowering medications on discharge. Acute phase hospital treatment was not gender determined. These findings have implications for secondary prevention in Ireland.