Risk Factors Outside Your Control


First step

Know your family tree. Write down health information for as many relatives as you can. Pay particular attention to siblings, parents and grandparents. Include known chronic conditions as well as cause and age of death. 

Second step

Know and understand how your personal medical history can affect your risk for heart disease. Pregnancy complications like gestational diabetes, pre-eclampsia and preterm delivery all put a woman at greater risk for heart disease later in life.

Undergoing chemotherapy and/or radiation therapy for breast cancer also increases a woman’s risk, as do certain inflammatory conditions like rheumatoid arthritis and lupus.

Take the Next Step

If you think you’re at risk for cardiovascular disease, take our online heart health assessment. Or to find a cardiology specialist near you, use our Find a Doctor tool.