Index: Health / Subcategory: Physical Health

Women's Health

Date Updated: 10/02/2012

In terms of general health status, men are more likely than women to report being in excellent or very good health. Women are more likely to report being limited in their activities than men. Nationally, 71.4% of all women are considered overweight. (Women's Health USA 2010 - pdf)

In the case of specific health issues, adult women over 65 experience higher rates of arthritis, asthma and hypertension than men.

A range of mental health problems, including depression, disproportionately affect women. Women are also more than twice as likely as men to have an unmet need for mental health treatment or counseling. (Women's Health USA 2010 - pdf)

Income and education are important factors that contribute to women's health and access to health care. In every family structure, women are more likely than men to live in poverty. Minority status also negatively impacts women's health status. For more details, see the Additional Information section of this measure page.

What this chart shows: Percentage of Deaths in Females by Leading Causes of Death in the United States, 2009

Data Source: Centers for Disease Control & Prevention [pdf]

See data table

What the above data tell us:

In the United States, heart disease and cancer are the leading causes of death in women. According to the Centers for Disease Control, heart disease mortality has exhibited a downward trend since 1950, whereas cancer mortality only began declining in the early 1990s. (Centers for Disease Control, 2009 [pdf])

What this chart shows: Mortality Rates* per 100,000 Residents for the Leading Causes of Death in Women in Colorado & Larimer County, 2011

*Age-Adjusted Rate

Data Source: Colorado Department of Health and Environment

See data table

What the above data tell us:

The leading causes of death in women in Larimer County and Colorado are very similar to those of the United States, however they are ranked in a slightly different order (see both charts above). The number one cause of death for women in Colorado and Larimer County is cancer, whereas the number one cause of death for women in the United States is heart disease.

The female mortality rates in Larimer County for heart disease and stroke in 2011 were higher when compared to Colorado.

What this chart shows: Breast Cancer Incidence Rate* (per 100,000) in Colorado & Larimer County, 2000-2009

*Age-Adjusted Rate

Data Source: Colorado Department of Health and Environment

See data table

What the above data tell us:

The overall trend in both Colorado and Larimer County has been a decline in the incidence of breast cancer. Care should be taken in comparing the incidence rate in Larimer County with Colorado because the Larimer County numbers are relatively small.

Over 200,000 new breast cancer cases are diagnosed each year in the United States. In the U.S. today, there are more than 2.5 million breast cancer survivors, and every woman is at risk. See the American Cancer Society for the latest national estimates of new breast cancer cases and deaths, as well as information on factors that influence survival, known risk factors for the disease, prevention details, early detection and treatment methods, and research currently being conducted on breast cancer.

What this chart shows: Breast Cancer Mortality Rate* (per 100,000) - Colorado & Larimer County, 2002-2011

*Age-Adjusted Rate

Data Source: Colorado Department of Health and Environment

See data table

What the above data tell us:

Over the last decade, Larimer County has met or exceeded the Healthy People 2010/2020 objectives for breast cancer mortality in eight of the ten years represented in the graph above. Over the last seven years, the breast cancer mortality rate in Colorado has remained steadily below the Healthy People objective. See Additional Information for an explanation of the Healthy People 2010/2020 program.

While breast cancer deaths have been declining nationally over the past two decades, breast cancer cannot yet be prevented. There are ways, however, for women to protect their health. Early detection is an important factor in the successful treatment of breast cancer. For more prevention information, visit Breast Cancer.org.

Additional Information:

Healthy People 2010 was a national health promotion and disease prevention initiative establishing national objectives to improve the health of all Americans, to eliminate disparities, and to increase the years and quality of life.

New guidelines and objectives have been established for the next ten years, through 2020.

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Minority Women-

Although women who are minorities experience many of the same health problems as white women, as a group, they are in poorer health, they use fewer health services, and they continue to suffer disproportionately from premature death, disease, and disabilities. Many also face tremendous social, economic, cultural, and other barriers to achieving optimal health (womenshealth.gov).

Uninsured Women-

According to The Commonwealth Fund, about 1 of every 5 U.S. women aged 19-64 years (19 million) was uninsured in 2010. Another 17 million were insured but with out-of-pocket costs so high they were effectively uninsured. Because of high cost, 43% of women in the U.S. went without recommended care, did not see a doctor when sick, or failed to fill needed prescriptions.

Women in Poverty-

See the National Organization for Women Foundation - Women's Health and Poverty Fact Sheet.

Women and Smoking-

According to a 2010 Centers for Disease Control survey, about 1 in 6 American women aged 18 years and older smoke cigarettes and the less education a woman has, the higher the likelihood she will smoke. In general, women smoke less than men. However smoking is becoming more popular among younger women, as approximately 20% of women aged 25-44 are smokers.

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Related Information on COMPASS -

Other Resources -

Industry Standards or Targets:

Healthy People 2010:

Healthy People 2020:

Data Tables:

Ten Leading Causes of Death in Females-United States, 2009

Number

% of All Deaths

Heart Disease

292,188 24.0%

Cancer

270,865 22.2%

Stroke (Cerebrovascular Disease)

76,769 6.3%

Chronic Lower Respiratory Disease

72,234 5.9%

Alzheimer's Disease

55,103 4.5%

Accidents (Unintentional Injuries)

42,999 3.5%

Diabetes

33,651 2.8%

Influenza and Pneumonia

28,564 2.3%

Kidney Disease

25,005 2.0%

Septicemia

19,268 1.6%

See chart

Mortality Rate (per 100,000) for the Leading Causes of Death in Females, 2011 (Age-Adjusted Rate)

Colorado

Larimer County

Number

Rate

Number

Rate

Cancer

3,387 125.1 203 115.9

Heart Disease

2,937 106.4 201 109.0

Chronic Lower Respiratory Disease

1,101 41.7 58 31.5

Stroke (Cerebrovascular Disease)

948 34.9 70 37.1

Alzheimer's Disease

885 31.8 55 29.5

Unintentional Injuries

944 35.1 41 24.7

Diabetes

333 12.4 17 10.2

Influenza and Pneumonia

313 11.3 16 87

Kidney Disease

223 8.1 13 7.0

Intentional Injuries

258 9.8

13

7.2

See chart

Breast Cancer Incidence Rate per 100,000 (Age-Adjusted Rate)

Year

Colorado

Larimer County

Number

Rate

Number

Rate

2000

2,789

135.5

167

141.9

2001

2,837

133.8

178

145.1

2002

2,824

129.4

175

135.8

2003

2,863

127.1

176

132.8

2004

2,671

115.3

164

121.4

2005

2,930

123.5

168

119.7

2006

2,938

120.8

163

112.0

2007

3,076

123.3

194

131.1

2008

3,220

124.8

203

130.1

2009

3,441

129.8

196

128.2

See chart

Breast Cancer Mortality Rate per 100,000 (Age-Adjusted Rate)

Colorado

Larimer County

Healthy People 2010 Objective

Number

Rate

Number

Rate

2002

493 22.9 25 19.6 22.3

2003

506 23.0 26 20.0 22.3

2004

507 22.4 37 27.2 22.3

2005

514 22.0 25 17.3 22.3

2006

491 20.7 23 15.9 22.3

2007

455 18.5 26 17.2 22.3

2008

484 18.9 26 16.8 22.3

2009

508 19.5 31 20.3 22.3

2010

527

19.9

45 27.0 22.3

2011

546 19.6 30 17.3 20.6

See chart