Heart Attack Warning Signs
Chest pain. It’s the classic symptom that means “heart attack” to most people. But many heart attack sufferers do not experience chest pain. And it’s these “silent” heart attacks that may be the most deadly.
Age and Gender Are Factors
Studies show that certain groups are less likely to experience chest pain with a heart attack. These include women, non-Caucasians of either sex and people who have had a stroke. And individuals who experienced chest pain with a previous heart attack may not have it the next time.
Unfortunately, many people are not as familiar with other heart attack warning signs. They tend to delay getting to a hospital—or don’t go at all—because they may think that their symptoms aren’t serious. This contributes to the higher death rate of heart attacks without chest pain.
A heart attack can cause a range of warning signs, such as:
- shortness of breath
- nausea or vomiting
- pain down one or both arms
- back, neck, jaw or stomach pain
- breaking out in a cold sweat
- severe headache—especially in older adults
When a patient needs help, the Rapid Response Team brings the critical care unit to them until it can get the patient to the critical care unit.
- dizziness or fainting
- anxiety or weakness.
If you think you may be having a heart attack, seek help immediately. But don’t drive to the ER. Call 911 for an ambulance so that the emergency medical team can begin treating you on the way to the hospital.
Always err on the side of caution. Hesitating out of fear of embarrassment may have serious health consequences. Let the doctors decide if it’s a false alarm.