Connections Between Shoulder Pain And Heart Attack
Discomfort from a heart attack can cause chest pain or even shoulder pain. So if you are experiencing shoulder or arm pain on the left side, you may be having a heart attack. However, Heart attack is not the only cause of these types of pain. So it is important to be aware of different body pains that can be indications of heart attacks.
Strong Indicators of a Heart Attack
Weak Indicators of a Heart Attack
Burning, squeezing, tightness, pressure or pain sensation
Knifelike or sharp pain felt when coughing or sneezing
Gradual increase of pain over a few minutes
Pain concentrated on one point.
Pain in the diffuse area, including middle of chest
Pain occurring distinctly on one side of the body
Pain extending to back, jaw, neck, and left arm
Abrupt stubbing pain that lasts for a very short moment
Pressure or pain accompanied by other symptoms like sudden nausea, cold sweat, problems breathing
Pain lasting for days or hours without any other symptoms
Pressure or pain that is felt during emotional stress or physical exertion or when you are resting
Pain caused by pressing the chest or body movement
Symptoms Of A Heart Attack
Symptoms of a heart attack can include:
- chest pain a sensation of pressure, tightness or squeezing in the centre of your chest
- pain in other parts of the body it can feel as if the pain is travelling from your chest to your arms , jaw, neck, back and tummy
- feeling lightheaded or dizzy
- feeling sick or being sick
- an overwhelming sense of anxiety
- coughing or wheezing
Although the chest pain is often severe, some people may only experience minor pain, similar to indigestion. In some cases, there may not be any chest pain at all, especially in women, older people, and people who have diabetes.
It’s the overall pattern of symptoms that helps to determine whether you are having a heart attack.
Heart Attack Warning Signs And Symptoms: Chest Head Jaw And Tooth Pain
Chest discomfort, manifest as pain, fullness, and/or squeezing sensation of the chest
Chest pain is the hallmark symptom of a heart attack, although it can take many different forms. In other cases, chest pain may not occur at all. The characteristic chest pain of a heart attack has been described as a sense of pressure, squeezing, fullness, or pain that starts in the center of the chest. The pain or discomfort typically lasts more than a few minutes, or it may go away and then return. It can spread down the arms, to the back, or to the head and neck. Both women and men report chest pain as a primary symptom of heart attack, but women more often than men are likely to have some of the other symptoms, such as nausea, jaw pain, or shortness of breath, that are described below.
Jaw pain, toothache, headache
The pain of a heart attack can spread down both arms, to the jaw or head, or to the back. Some people report tooth pain or headache as a symptom of a heart attack. It is possible to have these types of pain without chest pain during a heart attack.
Shortness of breath
Feeling short of breath or like you are gasping for air is a common symptom of a heart attack. Shortness of breath, or difficulty breathing, is medically known as dyspnea. Shortness of breath may occur before or during the chest pain of a heart attack, and in some cases, it may be associated with other heart attack symptoms without any chest pain.
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Can You Recognize A Heart Attack Or Stroke
What To Do When Every Moment Counts
How would you react to a medical emergency? When it comes to life-threatening conditions like heart attack or stroke, every minute counts. Get to know the signs and symptoms of these health threats. If you think you or someone else might be having a heart attack or stroke, get medical help right away. Acting fast could save your life or someone elses.
Heart disease and stroke are 2 of the top killers among both women and men in the U.S. Nationwide, someone dies from a heart attack about every 90 seconds, and stroke kills someone about every 4 minutes, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Quick medical help could prevent many of these deaths. Fast action can also limit permanent damage to the body.
Heart attack and stroke are caused by interruptions to the normal flow of blood to the heart or brain2 organs that are essential to life. Without access to oxygen-rich blood and nutrients, heart or brain cells begin to malfunction and die. This cell death can set off a series of harmful effects throughout the body. The changes ultimately lead to the familiar symptoms of a heart or brain emergency.
You might know the most common symptoms of heart attack: sustained, crushing chest pain and difficulty breathing. A heart attack might also cause cold sweats, a racing heart, pain down the left arm, jaw stiffness, or shoulder pain.
Do Not Fool Around With Potential Heart Attacks
Once upon a time, heart attacks were usually fatal. Doctors didnt know how to treat them and by the time something had been figured out, it was often too late. Now, science not only knows how to deal with heart attacks, it has provided you with the tools for early detection. If you are at high risk of a heart attack and you start getting pain in your left shoulderdont dismiss itgo have it checked out. That trip to the doctor may save your life.
Shortness Of Breath Nausea And Lightheadedness
Shortness of breath can occur with or without a chest pain during a heart attack. Most people dont realize this can happen before or after a heart attack as wellespecially for women..
Research has found that shortness of breath is the third most reported symptom before a heart attack among women and the top symptom during a heart attack.
Signs Your Neck Discomfort Is Probably Not Related To Your Heart
The pain occurs only when you move your neck or in certain positions.
It occurs only after a certain weightlifting exercise.
Its clearly associated with sleep position or a particular pillow.
The area of discomfort is sore or tender to the touch.
Its accompanied by tingling or a numb sensation going down the arm.
Ongoing neck pain without an explanation or that does not respond to modifications, such as a more comfortable pillow or ceasing a suspected offending exercise, needs a medical evaluation even if there are no other symptoms with it.
Dr. Krishnan is with Pacific Heart & Vascular, where you can view his videos on heart disease and healthy living. He has numerous publications and often speaks at local and regional events.
Lorra Garrick has been covering medical, fitness and cybersecurity topics for many years, having written thousands of articles for print magazines and websites, including as a ghostwriter. Shes also a former ACE-certified personal trainer.
Why Are Arm Pain And Heart Attack Connected
Most often a heart attack occurs when a obstructs blood flow into your heart muscle . This commonly causes a cramping or squeezing pain in the center or right side of your chest. Heart attack symptoms are extremely variable, but sometimes the pain in your chest extends to one or both shoulders and arms.
In addition to shoulder and , you may also have , aching or discomfort in other areas of your upper body, such as your neck, jaw or back, without any chest pain. This happens more commonly in women than in men.
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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Chest Pain: How A Doctor Decides It Could Be A Heart Attack
Posted October 26, 2015
Patients with chest pain come to my clinic with a nervous expression and a million-dollar question, “Doctor, is it my heart?”
Such concern is valid. But understanding how medical providers think about chest pain may allay some fear.
If you come to a clinic with chest pain, your provider will have questions about the major factors for heart disease. I will ask if you:
- have diabetes
- assess your age and gender
- check to see if you have a family history of heart disease.
How To Tell Your Neck Pain Might Be Caused By A Heart Problem
A good tipoff is the presence of certain additional symptoms.
While many different disorders can cause anterior neck pain, neck pain associated with difficulty breathing, chest pain, feeling flushed or sweating, or palpitations should raise suspicion for acute cardiac pathology, explains Sendhil Krishnan, MD, a board-certified adult general cardiologist with advanced subspecialty training in interventional cardiology.
Dr. Krishnan adds, The reason for the association of neck and jaw pain with cardiac problems has to do with cranial nerve X , also known as the vagus nerve.
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Would You Recognise A Gradual
We think of an attack as a big bang, but the symptoms can build over hours or days and even doctors can misinterpret them
In spring 2018, Tim Walker was working on a PhD in microbiology. Over the course of a week, he started feeling a little breathless during his morning commutes to University College London and had what felt like muscle aches around his upper back and shoulders. He put the symptoms down to a nasty virus. I was 31, he says. Why on earth would I suspect that I was having a heart attack?
As the days passed, his symptoms grew more pronounced. Eventually, he woke on a Saturday morning to the most intense pain Ive ever experienced an otherworldly, constant stabbing pressure in the collarbone area, neck and jaw, on both sides. He started coughing and vomiting, but there were no chest pains. Im not a religious man, but I remember praying at one point. After no more than 10 minutes, the symptoms went away, just as suddenly as they had appeared. He assumed it was a really nasty bug. Later, he became feverish and decided to take a few days off uni to get my strength back.
While Walkers age was an additional red herring , the slow onset of these easily misinterpreted symptoms is surprisingly common yet little known. A recent US study published in the European Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing found that, while 57% of patients reported an abrupt symptom onset, the other 43% experienced gradual symptom onset.
Less Likely To Be A Heart Attack
Sensation of pain, or of pressure, tightness, squeezing, or burning
Sharp or knifelike pain brought on by breathing or coughing
Gradual onset of pain over the course of a few minutes
Sudden stabbing pain that lasts only a few seconds
Pain in diffuse area, including a constant pain in middle of chest
Pain clearly on one side of the body or the other
Pain that extends to the left arm, neck, jaw, or back
Pain that is localized to one small spot
Pain or pressure accompanied by other signs, such as difficulty breathing, a cold sweat, or sudden nausea
Pain that lasts for many hours or days without any other symptoms
Pain or pressure that appears during or after physical exertion or emotional stress or while you are at rest
Pain reproduced by pressing on the chest or with body motion
Heart Attack Warning Signs You Should Not Ignore
February 8, 2017Heart
Heart attacks are the number one cause of death for both men and women in the United States. Every year, approximately 735,000 Americans experience a heart attack or myocardial infarction. Ventricular fibrillation is a leading cause of death of heart attack sufferers, and this typically occurs before victims can make it to an emergency room. For those who can get treatment in time, the prognosis is excellent, as most modern treatments yield a survival rate of more than 90 percent. The remaining percentage of those who do eventually die are those who have suffered significant damage to the heart muscle during the heart attack or those who experience damage later.
Heart Attack Warning Signs And Symptoms: Digestive Problems
Nausea or feeling sick on your stomach is a less common but possible symptom of a heart attack. Sometimes belching or burping can accompany nausea, and some patients have described a feeling like indigestion associated with a heart attack. Women are more likely than men to report these less typical symptoms of heart attack, and some patients have described feeling as though they are developing the flu.
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What To Do When A Heart Attack Occurs
If you believe a person is having a heart attack, have them sitting, keep them calm, loosen any tight clothing they may be wearing, have the person take any chest pain medications like nitroglycerin. If pain does not improve within three minutes of taking the medication, call emergency right away. Always call 911 immediately if a person is unconscious.
DO NOT leave the person, have them convince you not to call 911, wait to see if symptoms go away, give the person anything by mouth unless it is a prescribed medication.
Should I Still Call 999 Or Go To Hospital If I’m Worried About My Health
Whether or not you have coronavirus symptoms, it’s essential to dial 999 if you have symptoms that could be a heart attack, or if your heart symptoms get worse.
We are hearing that fewer people are being seen in hospital with heart attacks in recent weeks, which suggests that people are not seeking help when they should do. If you have any of the symptoms described above, you should call 999.
Don’t delay because you think hospitals are too busy – the NHS still has systems in place to treat people for heart attacks. If you delay, you are more likely to suffer serious heart damage and more likely to need intensive care and to spend longer in hospital.
Also Check: How To Calculate Target Heart Rate Zone
Pain You Cant Put A Finger On
Aches and pains that wonât go away could be a symptom of depression or anxiety.
Kelly Gregory, Hendersonville, TN.
Pam R. Taub, MD, associate professor of medicine, University of California San Diego.
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute: âWhat Are the Signs and Symptoms of Coronary Heart Disease?â
Gretchen E. Tietjen, MD, chairwoman of neurology and director, Headache Treatment and Research Program, University of Toledo Medical Center, Toledo, OH.
New York State Department of Health: âTypes of Strokes.â
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke: âLow Back Pain Fact Sheet.â
American Family Physician: âAcute Appendicitis: Review and Update.â
American Academy of Family Physicians: âAbdominal Pain, Short Term,â âDeep Vein Thrombosis.â
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases: âDiabetic Neuropathies: The Nerve Damage of Diabetes.â
Deborah Wexler, MD, MPH, associate professor of medicine, Harvard Medical School co-clinical director, Massachusetts General Hospital Diabetes Center associate program director for clinical research, internal medicine residency program, Mass General, Boston.
Mental Health America: âDepression.â
Trivedi, M. The Primary Care Companion to the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, published online 2004.
Christine Penguino, Atlanta.
Causes Of Left Arm Pain
The causes of left arm pain can vary. The most well known of these is a heart attack. In this case, the arm pain may be accompanied by pain or a tightening sensation in your chest, pain in your back, neck, shoulder or jaw, nausea, shortness of breath, dizziness or fatigue. Left arm pain can also be caused by angina. This has similar symptoms but they only last for a few minutes. Pain may also be the result of having tense muscles due to stress. Similarly, an injury or a problem affecting your bones, joints or soft tissue can cause arm pain, as can poor blood circulation and sleeping with an incorrect posture.
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Arm Back Neck Jaw Or Stomach Pain Or Discomfort
Heart attack pain may not be confined to the chest area. Pain or discomfort in your arm, back, neck, jaw, or stomach can also be heart attack-related.
But many people do not associate pain in these areas with having a heart attack which may prevent them from getting immediate medical attention.
Some head-to-toe signs of a heart attack include:
- Jaw, neck, or back pain
- Arm or shoulder pain or discomfort
- Shortness of breath
If you feel sudden discomfort in these areas, call 9-1-1.