Brooke had two young children aged two and five and no family history or risk factors for heart disease when she had a Spontaneous Coronary Artery Dissection (SCAD), an uncommon emergency heart condition that occurs when a tear forms in one of the blood vessels in the heart.
SCAD is the leading cause of heart attacks in new mums and women under 50. For many decades very little was known about SCAD heart attacks which were often missed and far too often diagnosed post mortem. Unbeknown to Brooke, it was only through earlier SCAD survivors like Katherine Leon and Laura Haywood-Cory in the U.S. and then Pamela Byles in Perth who reached out to heart research teams and agitated for research into this uncommon condition, that the story changed for so many like her across the world.
While this research may have been patient initiated, it is only through the generosity of SCAD Heart Attack survivors and their families in joining research studies, that medical researchers have been able to identify the optimal diagnosis and treatment to save SCAD patients and improve their long-term health outcomes. This research has led directly to Journal Articles and Conferences which have educated medical professionals such as Brooke’s Cardiologist and specialists worldwide. Hundreds of Australian women are now part of SCAD Medical Research Studies, supporting medical researchers to help beat SCAD and save lives.
*For more information about SCAD Research Inc, a not-for profit health charity raising awareness and funds for research into SCAD, visit their official website.