Angina And Heart Attacks
Angina is a syndrome caused by the supply of oxygen-rich blood to the heart becoming restricted.
People with angina can experience similar symptoms to a heart attack, but they usually happen during exercise and pass within a few minutes.
However, occasionally, people with angina can have a heart attack. It’s important to recognise the difference between the symptoms of angina and those of a heart attack. The best way to do this is to remember that the symptoms of angina can be controlled with medicine, but symptoms of a heart attack cannot.
If you have angina, you may have been prescribed medicine that improves your symptoms within 5 minutes. If the first dose does not work, a second dose can be taken after 5 minutes, and a third dose after a further 5 minutes.
If the pain persists, despite taking 3 doses of glyceryl trinitrate over 15 minutes, call 999 and ask for an ambulance.
Page last reviewed: 28 November 2019 Next review due: 28 November 2022
World Heart Day 202: Silent Attacks Account For 45% Of Heart Attacks In Men Say Doctors
- Silent heart attacks appear to be common as they account for about 45% of heart attacks, say doctors.
- According to the American Heart Association , silent heart attacks account for at least 1,70,000 of the estimated 8,05,000 annual heart attacks, globally.
- Indigestion, a case of the flu, strained muscle in chest or upper back, discomfort in the chest or in the jaw or in upper back or arms are some of the early warning signs of silent heart attacks.
Why Choose The Hospitals Of Providence For Your Early Heart Attack Care
The Hospitals of Providence has EHAC teams who genuinely care about you and your loved ones. Our hospitals are located across El Paso to provide accessible care to the communities in this city and nearby areas. At the same time, we have received multiple recognitions for the compassionate care and patient-centered cardiovascular services we offer.
Some of the accreditations and recognitions we received in recent years are as follows:
For Sierra Campus
- Chest Pain Reaccreditation by the Society of Cardiovascular Care
- ACC HeartCARE Center Designation by the American College of Cardiology
- Grade A rating for patient safety in the Leapfrog Groups Fall 2019 Safety Score
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A Time Bomb Is Ticking Away Beneath The Apparently Healthy Lifestyle Of Young Indian Males A Survey Shows Why They Need To Wake Up Before It’s Too Late
The young male heart is under attack. It’s not just that Indian men lead the global list in under-40 heart attacks. The INDIA TODAY-Saffolalife Study 2011 on 46,000 urban Indians shows that 78 per cent of men between 30 and 34 run the risk of a heart attack. And their hearts are ageing faster than their real age. Consider the young Delhi executive who discovered his ‘heart age’ by chance. He was looking for lonely hearts on Internet dating sites one lazy Sunday afternoon. An idle Google search for ‘heart’ returned 2,130,000,000 entries. And a wacky quiz, “How young is your heart?” caught his fancy. But as he navigated a 10-minute journey through multiple-choice questions on his vital signs, his heart sank. The quiz predicted that at 31, he had the heart of a 38-year-old.
He is not alone. “I get a lot of young men with very advanced heart disease that you would typically find in elderly patients,” says Dr Devi Prasad Shetty, chairman, Narayana Hrudayalaya, Bangalore. The 30s is when the body reaches its aerobic prime, endurance peaks and one can still laugh at botoxed faces. But what should be the best of times is becoming the worst of times for men. To begin with, men are hard-wired to suffer heart disease more than women. In 2010, UK scientists uncovered special Y chromosome genes, inherited from fathers, that make men prone to heart attacks. Men also lack the hormonal protection of oestrogen that younger women get.
Your biological age is the same as your heart age
What To Do If You Experience Heart Attack Symptoms
Unlike the classic crushing chest pain, these symptoms dont guarantee that your heart is in immediate danger. But they could indicate that trouble could be brewing down the road, so make an appointment to see your doctor as soon as you can.
If youre fortunate enough to have symptoms, listen to your body and get them checked out, Park says.
If your doctor suspects that a heart attack could be looming, he might recommend an EKG, a test measures the hearts electrical activity and shows if your heart is damaged. He might also call for a coronary angiogram, which detects blockages in your arteries.
And if you experience any classic symptoms that signal youre having a heart attack right now, call 911 ASAP. These include chest pressure or tightness, shortness of breath, lightheadedness, breaking out into a cold sweat, or discomfort in the arms, neck, or jaw.
Of course, the best way to prevent a heart attack is to improve overall health by lowering high blood pressure, maintaining a normal body weight, and abstaining from smoking.
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How Men And Women Experience Heart Attack
Women and men can experience the signs and symptoms of a heart attack differently.
Men may experience:
- shortness of breath
Although chest pain is thought to be the most common symptom of heart attack and it is common in men only about half of all women who have a heart attack actually report chest pain.
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Although men and women can experience chest pressure that feels like an elephant sitting across the chest, women can experience a heart attack without chest pressure, said Nieca Goldberg, M.D., medical director for the Joan H. Tisch Center for Women’s Health at NYUs Langone Medical Center and an American Heart Association volunteer. Instead they may experience shortness of breath, pressure or pain in the lower chest or upper abdomen, dizziness, lightheadedness or fainting, upper back pressure or extreme fatigue.
Even when the signs are subtle, the consequences can be deadly, especially if the victim doesnt get help right away.
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Heart Attack Warning Signs For Men
The classic symptom of chest pain may not be present in every heart attack, but it remains the most common warning sign, especially among men.
The pain is often described as a heavy weight on the chest. It tends to be located in the center of the chest, but it can be felt from armpit to armpit.
Other heart attack symptoms that are common among men include:
- shortness of breath, which sometimes develops before any other symptoms, and may be present when sitting still or moving around
- a sudden cold sweat
- symptoms that come on quickly
Chest Tightness As Well As Pains Elsewhere In The Body Are Among The Most Common Heart Attack Symptoms In Men
Heart attack symptoms in men vary, from cold sweats to chest pain to lightheadedness.
Up until around age 55, men are much more likely than women to experience a heart attack. The gap gets smaller with advancing age, but men are still at a higher risk than women of suffering a heart attack. For that reason alone, its important that you recognize the common heart attack symptoms in men.
Below, we look at five heart attack symptoms in men:
- Aches and pains in the upper body, including both arms
- Shortness of breath
- Cold sweats and dizziness
- Anxiety accompanied by a racing pulse.
These heart problems in men require treatment see the section below titled What to Do Once You Notice Heart Attack Symptoms.
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Heart Attack Treatment: Time Is Muscle
People who experience some of these subtle signs are oftenhesitant to head to the hospital. After all, nausea or neck pain can haveother, not-so-serious causes. And a feeling that something just isnt right?Thats frustratingly vague and hard to explain to a doctor.
But if theres even a chance you are having a heart attack, its better to act fast and early thanlate.
A heart attack occurs when blood flow to the heart is blocked, damaging the heart muscle. Without urgent treatment, heart tissue will begin to die. Time is muscle, Dr. Abdallah says. The sooner your doctor starts treatment, the better the outcome.
Doctors can give medications and perform procedures to remove blockages and restore blood flow to the heart. And such therapy has gotten better and more effective over the years, he adds. Treating heart attacks has been one of the great interventions in the history of medicine.
Do Women Fare Better Or Worse Than Men After A Heart Attack
Younger women under age 45 have a better outcome than men of a similar age. Scientists believe this is because of estrogen’s heart-protective effects. However, after menopause ends the protective benefits of estrogen, women fare worse than men. More specifically:
- Women between the ages of 45 and 65 who’ve had a heart attack are more likely to die within a year of the event compared with men of this same age.
- Women over age 65 are more likely to die within weeks of their heart attack than men over age 65.
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Waiting For An Ambulance
If you have had a heart attack, it’s important that you rest while you wait for an ambulance, to avoid unnecessary strain on your heart.
If aspirin is available and you are not allergic to it, slowly chew and then swallow an adult-size tablet while you wait for the ambulance.
Aspirin helps to thin your blood and improve blood flow to your heart.
Early Symptoms Don’t Really Sound Like The Hollywood Heart Attack Experience Is That Typical
There are two main ways that people present with heart attacks, Dr. Xu says:
- Sudden A person may or may not have any symptoms previously, but all at once a plaque deposit ruptures, triggering a chain of events and a sudden heart attack.
- Gradual The other presentation happens slowly as coronary disease progresses. In this situation, an artery is getting narrower over time. When the artery is narrowed down to more than 70 percent, a person will start to have warning symptoms ahead of time, especially with physical exertion.
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Symptoms Of Heart Attack For A Man
A heart attack is a medical emergency, with similar symptoms in males and females. However, certain symptoms may be more common, depending on a persons sex.
This article explores the symptoms of a heart attack for males and females, risk factors, and ways to prevent them.
A heart attack occurs when the blood supply to the heart becomes blocked. Several symptoms may indicate a heart attack. These are:
- Chest discomfort or pain: A person may experience pressure, squeezing, fullness, or pain in the center of their chest. This may come and go or persist for more than a few minutes.
- Pain or discomfort in other body parts: A person may also experience pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the stomach, jaw, back, or neck.
- Shortness of breath: A person may feel a shortness of breath with or without chest pain.
Some other heart attack symptoms may include:
looks at the differences between males and females in depression levels and rates of complications following a heart attack.
They found females were more likely to develop depressive symptoms and were more likely to experience complications.
Some of the more common complications that people may experience after a heart attack include:
In My Own Words: Heart Health For Myself And My Family
Sandra Driggers is a nurse at Mayo Clinic in Florida who works in the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine. This is her heart health story.
I struggled with my weight for most of my life. I never really gave a lot of thought to being healthy , or about how my weight and lifestyle played a role in my future health.But a little over 16 years ago, I had a heart attack.
Back then, at age 39, I never once thought about my risk for heart disease or a heart attack. I always thought heart issues were an older persons issue, and more of a mans concern. Definitely not a problem for a woman, especially not a young mom like myself.
It was 2005, and my sons were 6 and 12 at the time. Days were busy because I homeschooled them, did housework and generally, tried to do everything for everyone. Eventually, I started to notice I was having pain in my left arm anytime I would get stressed or exert myself in any way.
I kept telling myself that I had pulled a muscle. In the back of my mind, though, I was scared of the possibility that it could be something else. I wondered if it could be my heart. But, again, I was a young woman, so I convinced myself that those things do not happen to us.
Even as I would sit in my bathroom with an automated blood pressure cuff taking my pressure over and over again, watching it go higher, I’d tell myself that I was much too young for anything to happen to me.
For over a decade, I maintained. But old habits are hard to break.
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Signs Of A Heart Attack In Women That Get Missed
Researchers have learned that symptoms of heart attack can be very different, especially for men and women. The most common signs of a heart attack are the same for both, as the table below shows. But there are many symptoms women are more likely to have that are less expected:
Although having crushing chest pain is not unusual for women experiencing a heart attack, more often than not they have a combination of less-recognized symptoms such as:
Women tend to attribute those types of symptoms to non-life threatening conditions that are not heart related, such as acid reflux, the flu or even stress and anxiety.
Rather than getting medical care, women are more likely to wait it out, hoping symptoms go away, with heart-damaging and life-threatening consequences.
Heart Attack Symptoms In Men Vs Women
All heart attacks are not created equally, and that is especially true when it comes to the difference in symptoms between men and women. Knowing how to identify heart attack symptoms is critical to getting treatment quicker and saving valuable heart muscle. Dr. Tara Jarreau of Louisiana Cardiology Associates offers the following advice on recognizing heart attack symptoms.
Studies have shown there is a distinct disparity between men and women when it comes to the heart. For example, women have smaller hearts and smaller arteries than men do. This could be why the symptoms of a heart attack are different for women than men.
Common symptoms of a heart attack for both men and women include:
- Chest pain. For men, it can feel like uncomfortable pressure or squeezing of the chest. For women, the pain could be radiating or non-radiating. Research shows that almost half of women said they did not experience chest pain at anytime during a heart attack.
- Jaw or shoulder pain
- Weakness and shortness of breath
Unique symptoms for women include:
- Fatigue, often the first and most unrecognized symptom
- Back pain between the shoulder blades
- Unique symptoms for men include:
- Pain in one or both arms
- Back or stomach pain
- Abdominal discomfort that may feel like indigestion
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What Are The Symptoms Of A Heart Attack
Heart attacks can have a number of symptoms, some of which are more common than others. The symptoms you have are also influenced by your sex, as with men and women being more likely to have different heart attack symptoms.
Common heart attack symptoms
Symptoms most often described by people having a heart attack:
- Chest pain . This symptom can be mild and feel like discomfort or heaviness, or it can be severe and feel like crushing pain. It may start in your chest and spread to other areas like your left arm , shoulder, neck, jaw, back or down toward your waist.
- Shortness of breath or trouble breathing.
- Nausea or stomach discomfort. Heart attacks can often be mistaken for indigestion.
- Heart palpitations.
- Feeling lightheaded, dizzy or passing out.
Heart attack symptoms in women
Medical research in recent years has shown that women may have the above symptoms, but also have a higher chance of experiencing symptoms different from those listed above.Women are less likely to describe the following:
- Chest pain, especially in the center of the chest.
- Discomfort that feels like indigestion.
Women are more likely to describe the following:
- Shortness of breath, fatigue and insomnia that started before the heart attack.
- Pain in the back, shoulders, neck, arms or abdomen.
- Nausea and vomiting.
Catch The Signs Early
Dont wait to get help if you experience any of these heart attack warning signs. Some heart attacks are sudden and intense. But most start slowly, with mild pain or discomfort. Pay attention to your body and call 911 if you experience:
- Chest discomfort. Most heart attacks involve discomfort in the center of the chest that lasts more than a few minutes or it may go away and then return. It can feel like uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain.
- Discomfort in other areas of the upper body. Symptoms can include pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach.
- Shortness of breath. This can occur with or without chest discomfort.
- Other signs. Other possible signs include breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness.
Download the common heart attack warning signs infographic |
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