Will the facts are surprising. If not shocking. More women die of heart disease than all the cancers combined. More women than men now die of heart disease. Only 13%. Of women recognize heart disease as their number one threat. These facts matter a lot whether you're a woman or man who loves his mother his wife his daughter or friend. Casey Breyer had her first part episode in high school she spent the next six years trying to get correctly diagnosed. The -- Lewis is a 43 year old wife and mother of three she is also an avid jogger and dancer. And now triple bypass survivor. And surely is a fifty year old cardiac survivor. After two years of -- of therapy. She just completed her fourth half marathon. Real women with real heart disease but alive to tell their stories and -- need to listen. First of all thank each and every one of you for being here we also have a delightful doctor -- going to bring him in the second but we've got to hear these stories on. I'm thinking if you -- year in high school. And you wake up in the night. -- middle of the night as dead asleep. Woke up with my heart going superfast. -- got my mom because that's fifteen hand. And then she put her finger on my polls. I said man that that feels real fast and she turned on a light switch and she could see my hair moving with my heart beat it was beating so fast and so hard. And we got to the hospital and I was going to my heart was going to -- in 65 beats him in an effort. But no reason and that that we knew of at least you were a regular fifteen year old you don't play sports to -- regularly I did have played soccer for like. Seven years hand -- regular regular teenager and until all of a sudden loss on. So briefly take us through those six years of trying to get diagnosed properly -- so. After that first night in the hospital. They sent me to a cardiologist. Who said this was probably a fluke let's just see what happens and a month later. And back in the hospital with my heart going 260 again. NAFTA to give me a shot to kind of stop it just for a brief second can get a chance to reboot itself then. That takes a lot out of you so we're really hoping to avoid another one of those and then I was sent to a specialist called in electro physiologist to manages. Matters of electricity in your heart which is kind of what my problem is related to. And I was put on medication that worked pretty well but not. Perfectly. For about six years. And I finally got really tired of still having attacks and being on medication and feeling sluggish and sick. Mean not that you were in college at that point author of high school right and then I graduated and went to college. And when I moved down to New Orleans -- from from Hattiesburg -- -- down here to go to two lane. And had a really just had enough and sought a second opinion which is by far the most important thing that I did for my own health and thus far in my life. Get that second opinion strike always trust your -- Okay misperception. I look at you first volume of twenty years old. And I cannot believe you are -- three your 43. Kind of take it back where. You had a problem. Well I'm 43 and on last year at the age of forty -- in the -- and triple bypass. And elegance by not being on any medication didn't have high blood pressure. I didn't have diabetes I didn't have high cholesterol. I was an avid jogger. No symptoms. Now the Simpsons actually we're very gradual my natural Emma solar hyper person. In over a period of time I just got to beef up I became very sluggish. To the point that I just really couldn't lift my head off of the -- -- so I knew something was going on at that point. As always -- tried to exercise and Wendy -- got a burning sensation very shocked burning sensation in my left collarbone. Like most people kinda shrug -- off. And I can't exercise a day out try again tomorrow same thing happened and I kept doing that over a period time. And then that burning sensation -- begin to move up my neck midweek. And cutting -- my attention at that point and I was still getting more more sluggish. And individually. As the like getting like multiple bumps inside my heart and so I knew I was in trouble at that point. And I even when you had the burning sensation in the shoulder you were not connecting it to heart knowing him. No I didn't he just felt crummy and people would say -- three injured running marathons and you're tired. Yes basically that's kinda what happened. It's -- really about two months to get a correct diagnosis. And basically. A lot of people going about my physical appearance. On people's outlook the epitome of a healthy person on -- Somewhat youthful looking but. I just had a difficult time getting a diagnosis basically had to go to six cardiologists. One internists and two emergency room visits and Morgan actually get a correct diagnosis. What the statement. OK -- to talk to me you're fifty years old. Actually I'm 55 if you thought you could do. All take -- back to your life what. I have heart disease in my family. Father had a heart disease my grandfather and my husband has heart disease. When I turned fifty. I started feeling extremely time and -- and I wonder if this can be hard. Emotionally it's not. And actually had a busy schedule honestly care of -- mother we decided to take care of her in her home and she aged. And I was doing that from Thursday to Sunday driving for hours to do it every week in. And working nine hours a day science of course thought well of course I'm tired yes -- look at Honda and and it when he turned fifty. He'd get the perk where I work getting full fiscal with the stress tests and a lot. Although now it's probably a good time and passion and passion go ahead and take commitment that says. I meant arrangements to have mine physical and before rocket asked for -- stress test tees it. Something came up -- on your EKG is probably nothing but he said I am gonna suggest we need to stress test. Any scheduled -- within a couple of days and when I arrived from a stress tests wasn't able to happen because. My blood pressure was so high that then we're afraid to give me the stress tests. And I live on the North Shore and I work here in new violence -- pointless -- -- ambulance. And that it wanted to go home. And they did another very cagey and -- on my -- to see you know cardiologist right way and a civil Puget Hines won on the North Shore. So the idea and I facts on the information taking him and -- think and well you know maybe they'll do one of those counts in school -- or something else they can do you. In that I've got to. Trying to get two on Monday. I mean -- -- -- then I -- -- -- things did not commit don't have time to be sick. And Nassau winning incident cardiologist and he said you know this is death you definitely had a block at some point there. There's no doubt about it. And I again ask him isn't something Jessica. Nagging need to sliding down and we need to have to stand -- a lot scheduling into -- -- I think it was on Thursday that. -- and had the injured -- -- -- cardiologist doesn't place pants he's not in conventional party not to smoke coming out just at the time. He performed the procedure and was in the process of telling me I had three blockages. And outside discussed I have heart disease and my family and on that what's certain things main. And when he tells me one of the blockages -- in my -- it was 85%. I need that if a Berlin wasn't successful I was probably looking at a open heart. And I immediately. And -- and to -- My husband said that they came out and said that I was in distress the parent you know economy down explained to him that I have three blockages. They placed Tupelo planes and one time he spent. In. Blockages that was in 2000. And states. And I'm here today and you're doing half marathon. I am doing half there. On these are incredible women at first and I thank you very much for being so open about your situations. We are going to come back and we're going to talk about with a doctor about. I think the shock is that your ages you're young your athletic. Why does this happen why don't more women know that this is happening stay with this I'm Angela on WL. I think we all have an image of somebody having a heart attack usually -- say middle aged or older man. Grasping his heart dropping to the floor. And I think what we're hearing and now understanding. Is that that is not always the case that more women are now dying of heart disease than men. And the classic grabbing of the -- dropping to the floor. Did not affect any of the three women who we just heard from an incredible stories young athletic women. Some with some history in their family but not. You would look at them and think not a candidate for heart disease much less a heart attack. We are now joined by. I'm very brave men sitting here doctor Robert Madden who was chairman of the board the American Heart Association. And a cardiologist from west Jefferson park clinic. And I appreciate very much you joining us. Thank you for the opportunity and is this unusual these stories we're hearing. No unfortunately these stories are not unusual. I think that what has changed is that we've become more educated not just the ladies who are speaking to you but physicians themselves. Since go red for women has been initiated over the last ten years. Guidelines have actually changed and the research has shown that there are some differences. And I think its impact pulled that they're researches. The researchers and the money injuries have gone to educate the position as well as the patient. Breast cancer is an absolutely horrific disease and we all know someone. If not many people who have had but it was interesting to -- just told a figure that one in 33 women will get breast cancer or died of breast cancer. But one in three women will die of heart disease again numbers but they're made up of real people. I know the go red for women has spent ten years doing really a glorious job of trying to educate us. But I also got this information may be the good doctor can help explain. That part of the work of go red for women has been to identify issues one of them nearly half of the African American women. Ages twenty and older. Almost 49%. Have cardiovascular disease. That blew my mind. Absolutely and I think that goes. To risk factors. When we talk about the new technologies. About stint in the -- bypass surgery and that's. Technology that's useful but late in the process. It is. Ongoing. Lifestyle. Change that we must. Intervene with. And people who have a propensity to hypertension. Elevated cholesterol levels elevated blood pressure levels. Hum. Who may need to work on exercising more eating less and some of the lifestyle changes that we know are helpful. If we can actually introduced introduce that to all segments of the society and not leave any out that they would make the most impact. And not just wait until technology can save us from so. It says Hispanic women are likely to develop heart disease ten years earlier than Caucasian and again the same thing lifestyle. -- think lifestyle is part of it. When you start delving into the statistics you see lots of things and as you know statistics change and then based on how they're collected by. What we see a propensity toward is that in the Hispanic population. Many would say that there is an increase. Number of patients with diabetes. And we know that diabetes few rules. Cardiovascular disease and so would that. High number of patients with diabetes. -- will tend to manifest cardiovascular disease at an earlier age. I wanna go back to our great women here. Here you are a teenager. I could probably not even saying the words heart disease. Within the struggle that you have for six years. Still not being. Really not analyzed correctly to the point where you say I'm gonna get another opinion right I mean that to me is unfortunate. How. I would -- I would agree it when I finally saw the second opinion. I had I know I was a very good candidate and presumably had been a very good candidate for corrective procedure. That took all of an hour when and when it was finally time to have a dime it was it was out patient. I was on the road home I mean as stayed overnight and and then. It near a hospital and even in the hospital it was nothing. And it brought nothing but you know the grand scheme of things that could've been done six years before six years earlier and I might have had much different. Teenage you know period of my life. Where I didn't feel. Old frankly and and sluggish and I gained sixty pounds actress diagnosed because there's too afraid to get up -- -- think -- on my heart was just gonna you know go off the rails at any moment. After my procedure I lost ninety. Felt like it was probably really get time to start really appreciating the heart the functions. Almost every day almost exactly like Asian descent. And I kind of felt like I was reclaiming a part of -- NFL had kind of. -- lost and I look at you and Stiller very young could be a model a half an unbelievable. And again I'd I think. Your story is the one you are athletic your mother here just worker mark Morgan and the pain that you felt not realizing that once the symptom. Yes well. I guess because of money in because of me being physical and athletic I certainly didn't think about heart disease. Actually not until. You know I got the multiple fronts and Jeff and I start to -- researches at that point. And I feel that I know that women typically have atypical symptoms since it let me make myself a little more familiar. And so at that time and -- to experience some things like and breaking out in the so. So then I did not say I am having some heart issues his one -- first visit by hand to the emergency room. My daughter was -- as I actually could not stand up or call out to her. But I can't call myself being prepared him a cell phone fits in case something happens of -- common at that time I'd call her downstairs. To come and sit with me she say you you you break out into a sweat. And I didn't wanna -- her but I knew I just told us that the OK and that part is probably the most frustrating of course studio went because it took almost a two month period. I familiarize myself with the symptoms I went to the doctor's office I'd get on the EKG testing. I'll still sent home until nothing was wrong with the I did. A stress test in the -- -- abnormality in. OK so I didn't nuclear test which should have shown. -- -- black -- worries but I was still sit home in saint come back for your results. Next week but I never -- to that week and I went to the emergency room that we get. A doctor should have reviews and in the office and -- she has three blocked arteries I need to have going straight to the emergency room that didn't happen not from happening. Ride and fortunately that can happen with I guess patient load lots of excuses for that but the technology is helping us. The problem can be balanced the -- and what that means is that the circulation that her heart muscle needs. Can be blocked in a pattern that actually. Reduces the flow. Uniformly. And actually you can have someone with three vessel heart disease. That looks totally normal that you do in the comparison between one at rest. And one that is that stress. Either by exercising or by an injection that actually speeds -- the heart and the blood flow so you can have that problem. Ladies are unique in -- in most cases with the breast tissue right there or relying the heart and the injection. Can also. Be mistaken. For breast tissue uptake and an artifact. Especially where miss Lewis had her blockage in the front of the heart and in some of the branches off the front so. There are some technical problems with stress testing -- you should still go on the patient's symptoms and add all this information. And to make a decision about the acuity care. We'll stay with this we're talking about heart disease and the number one killer of women in America. We'll be right back we're going to join the newsroom now and chain. Heart disease will kill one in three women unbelievable statistic. Meeting three incredible women who have all had. Equally incredible experiences Sharon is the only one who had really a big family history of heart disease. And yet you're still young woman Europe a super care giver to your mother. And you say driving for hours to get -- every. Every week and you expect for five days from Allison in 2008. To 2009. Via both years. And and it's a lot and I we bring that up because a lot of women do that. And the issue of not taking care of yourself. Yeah I did sort of push the button I think and I need I was. Having symptoms and I mean I didn't have time to be sick. Analysts hoping. In all honesty that it would just go away. And one of them symptoms I had was I I didn't have any pain in my chest. But it was when I was at rest and I kept thinking well it can't be my heart because if it was I would be having policy in the middle of physical activity. Now I'm having you know arrest so you know -- day it's something Nelson tired and stressed. And little did -- and after everything was over was -- one of the worst kinds of paying leaking game is when your heart is at rest. -- Well we are discussing stable and you know which usually represents a plaque which is limiting flow. And usually only noticed. When we exert ourselves. And needs a blood supplies beyond what we can supply with that obstructed artery. Com which he's describing now is. Pain at rest and it could come from multiple reasons. The circulation is impaired and can be impaired from ID clocked closing all ordering. Abruptly and decreasing the supply to zero. Or spasm -- and arteries on top of the partial plaque. Or plaque -- itself and closing their arteries so. Once you've gone from stable -- which just means a limited -- applied to complete absence of -- down an artery because of an abrupt change. Then that pain at -- needs to be addressed because time is muscle. Getting there quickly it's a considerable amount of damage and usually we were talking about getting to the hospital and getting them -- re opened. In about ninety minutes that's -- guideline that we. Nine minutes feel the pain get. Call definitely yes that's that I'm hearing in an effort from both of our other women that. In essence she didn't you were being taken seriously. Yes definitely an experience when that as a -- earlier to almost two months. To get diagnosed and I felt that the doctors didn't take me as seriously being a young woman. -- six cardiologists. Album was frankly -- he gave me about five minutes in his office it did -- the scope you know to tell me to breathe in the front. Reason of banking on his way out of the door I'm looking at the Beck and his -- -- his. Ankles though. I never met him at the grocery stores in there pretty. Dark fantasy weekend. I can't -- and those. Does not enough experience also was. With with that internist I just -- it was going from dock inducted just trying to get occurring diagnosis. And I had been to a cardiologist earlier that morning -- that brought me to her. That -- appointment and she frankly is that is why I see you went to a cardiologist this morning. She diagnosed me with. And so and other docked at the San indigestion. -- anxiety united agreed to that message because of all the ongoing threats and apparently to having an -- Abbott says that's not -- Problem. You know what we're really talking about is almost discrimination. Right against women this was very interesting and some of the research. Women comprise only 24%. Of participants in all heart related studies what is that. 24%. -- half the population were dying more now than men. We need to get that stepped up. Women are less likely than men to receive aggressive diagnosis and treatment for that. I'll defend early. In that many women are. Consider. Especially doing childbearing age to be thinking about themselves and the possibility of having a child. And many will not get into any study that's gonna give you medication that's brandy that you have to sign a piece of paper for. It's -- it would not quite sure what this'll do we think we now. And once that has been set that trend has been set from twenty to thirty to forty years of age. And then they're usually not including the that is later and I think that we do need to once. Post the proposal. And or surgical leave postmenopausal you may want to focus harder on getting. Those ladies in trials. And that has been done tactic it's been in those ten years that we've been going rate for women that we started to do this and to develop the guidelines that have made a difference. There is some good news stay with -- were gonna continue to talk about heart disease and women right activists. -- let's talk symptoms were talking heart disease with doctor Matheny. We've heard from these women you know as you said you were resting and you felt the pain that you didn't say -- that's. And then yours was in the children what else should women look for. I think that when you come to the hospital it's important to realize that they're gonna talk to you about pain in the gonna focus on that for awhile and not only will they rescuers -- located but the intensity. Scale of one to ten. But I -- think that if you treat everybody with chest pain and don't get other factors involved. Documented and you've missed the boat and then you would be. Unnecessarily. -- -- -- -- But if you don't include shortness of breath because the heart sits right between belongs hooked up to blood vessels that are carrying oxygen back and forth. And when that heart stops starts to fail. Often the circulation to the long fail and so those patients are often short of breath. And -- so if you're having chest pain. With shortness of breath just can't get a full breath even you feel as if you want to you on. Just take a big Opel there and you're still short of breath and this persists. That's some major indication that there's something. Significant going -- In addition not only is the pain there at the heart are steps -- -- in the middle of the chest often can radiate to the jaw. -- to the arm. And in women it's seems to happen more often that is to the upper back. So anywhere in the torso and upper back. Or even the lower sternum in front -- gastric regional where they would say you would have heartburn. Those areas seem to happen more frequently with ladies not to chest pain. But the referred pain and the associated symptoms seem to happen now again I'll be clear. We are more well liked and -- different the chest pain is common. But often you'll look for these associated symptoms which clue you in and make it a bit more. Serious that this is probably coming from the heart. I actually admire what you women have done. After. You've gotten over these things and you've just continued to live big time. And participate in and be athletic etc. lesson learned about taking care of your heart of Houston now are really one of my heart. But that had to have been a little frightening the first Chinese AMOCO for this five K -- -- half marathon. And strangling. But the -- did it. I was lucky enough to be given a six week prescriptions for cardiac rehab which of course I didn't have time please. And -- the quickly after the video on the first visit and left crying the first dying on the way home. When I was monitors and click on the machines I realized I can only exercise for eight minutes. A went to cardiac rehab for a full power I exercised -- any minute just after the procedure. I spent the rest of the time in the back of the -- with my feet up trying to get our -- -- that's how badly my heart was an option. And I continued to -- cardiac rehab for six weeks for six months I would for two years. I graduated I was in a bad statement but I enjoyed some much what I learned from the people there in rehab -- relating with heart disease. That idea assignment from my first half marathon I'm still on -- And completed it and mean I was on my land the deepest thoughts on. And your back in America -- yes and well at -- they previously was already. A Jack an exercise and so when I went team cardiac rehab. And that the the person -- that I wanna get back into the lights now on Amazon before. Without me trying it on my -- home. And so. About a month you know he pushed me states that he push me each time -- it do a little lord do little more afraid because I didn't feel. If my heart with -- advocates but once I saw that I could do it. That I in Jack keen on I mean it jogging on treadmills of people I think you should act that I didn't do what -- do what I used to do. And Stacy kept pushing me he was a wanna suggest that participate in it -- -- thirteen Crescent City classic so is seven months post bypass surgery. -- dissipated. And then. And long and I have chills thinking about that and same thing with the US man when I got. -- healthier and started started back exercising. A lot of party in machines and in gem like and elliptical or treadmill. Have the heart rate monitor options and I would do that at first because my heart rate this is my issue. But that is. I was -- and hunters also calls the machine to shut off if you go past a certain point. I'm and so for the first about six months of trying to be healthy human and I went in they would be -- and it shut off in their eyes -- at -- agenda at two -- on around you know either. -- twenty somethings and shutting down the -- you know. So you have to have finally used to -- I've kind of found elements are found arisen that worked my first to Ryan was the saints -- football five K. Last year I'm finishing on the fifty -- at the superdome and weeping like a child in Canada I am and my mom and my brother cheering me on and is a big deals that have done a couple races after that I'm just enjoying being able to. Your great each and every one. Get ready coming up shortly will announce the code word in the 1000 dollar nationwide holiday cash contest on WWL. I wanna think Casey in the Tosh and sharing so much for sharing your story. And I want to thank doctor Robert the -- at the American Heart Association here and degree cardiologist and nice man. There's a heart walk on Saturday 9 AM LaSalle park next to separate stadium. Go there they're gonna give you lots of good information and you have fun as these women have thanked you on merge with your life.