More black women get heart disease

Canaan Mdletshe

Canaan Mdletshe

The University of Zululand says that coronary artery disease in black urban women is increasing and nearing the incidence reported among white urban women.

The university attributed this to the urbanisation of black women.

It said urbanisation was continuing to play a significant role in changing the pattern of health-risk factors relating to coronary artery disease (CAD).

Marius Coetsee, professor of the human movement sciences department of the university, said that though CAD had not been a major cause of death in the black population in the past, the situation was changing.

"According to our research project, during which a comparison of modifiable coronary artery disease risk factors was made between urban black and white females, white females still have a significantly higher risk of CAD than Westernised black females, but the gap is closing fast," he said.

Coetsee said the major risk factors tested were physical inactivity, cigarette smoking, hypertension, hypercholesterolemia and obesity.

The subjects for the study, recruited when they joined a fitness centre, were 62 urban black women paired for age with 62 urban white women.