Heart attacks are prevalent in the United States. Every 40 seconds, someone suffers from one. However, many may not know that heart disease is also the top cause of death for women.
Studies show that heart attack symptoms differ in women compared to men. They even start appearing a month before an episode. Knowing these symptoms is crucial for receiving proper care in an emergency.
Women suffer from artery blockage in the primary and smaller arteries. The symptoms of this blockage include pain in the jaw, neck, arms, and abdomen.
Chest pain was identified as the main symptom of a heart attack. Most women tend to feel sharp chest pain at the moment of the heart attack. However, they can also have cardiac arrest without this characteristic symptom.
Shortness of breath may occur at any time. Its main characteristic is that any small activity triggers this symptom, even the ones that would not be strenuous otherwise. If it’s severe enough, it may also cause dizziness.
Women have reported symptoms that could be confused with indigestion or heartburn. These symptoms include nausea, vomiting, cold sweat, and dizziness.
Other heart attack symptoms in women feel less life-threatening. However, these additional symptoms can signal a heart attack combined with the abovementioned ones. Other symptoms in women may include:
- Swelling of feet, legs, ankles, or abdomen
Early Signs of a Heart Attack in Women
As the top reason for death in women, it’s essential to be aware of every heart attack symptom. Especially the ones that may be confused with less threatening health issues. To reduce the chances of heart disease or cardiac arrest, seek medical attention for any symptoms and keep up with regular checkups.