Heart attack symptoms affect both men and women, but with slightly different symptoms. However, if you have a family history of heart issues, if you smoke excessively, if you have high blood pressure, high cholesterol or if you are overweight, then for men and women your chances of having a heart attack is higher. We are often so busy in our daily lives taking care of our families and workplace tasks that we don’t take the time to care for our own health.
There are many different types of examinations that can confirm the help you may need. The most popular is the ECG interpretation, or electrocardiogram, which measures the electrical activity of the heart, as well as the heart’s rhythm and strength.
A heart attack is when blood cells carrying oxygen to the heart muscles become blocked. Heart attacks are called a coronary heart disease (CHD) where plaque builds up inside the coronary arteries. This condition is called “atherosclerosis.” Often, the plaque can rupture inside the artery forming a blood clot. If these heart conditions are not treated swiftly, the affected heart muscle arteries will begin to cease from functioning creating scar tissues.
The following symptoms for men and women should be examined by a doctor as soon as possible to increase your life expectancy. Men experience heart issues earlier in life than women do. The basic symptoms of a heart problem in men include the following:
*Chest pain/pressure that makes your chest feel very heavy
*Left shoulder, back, arm, neck, jaw, or stomach pain and discomfort
*Consistent indigestion of the abdomen
*Extreme shortness of breath
*A cold sweat suddenly happens
Women who experience a heart attack may not experience chest pains, but they do experience at least one or a few of the following symptoms for a long period of time:
*Severe fatigue that lasts for days
*Feeling lightly faint which women shake off as nothing
*Shortness of breath
*Days of indigestion which we call gas
*Constant pain in the shoulder, the back, the jaw, the arm, the chest, or even the throat
There is a heart issue called the “silent” heart attack. This is a heart attack but without the common symptoms. It is estimated that more than 200,000 U.S. citizens experience a silent heart attack each year. Silent heart attacks occur more commonly in individuals with diabetes, hypertension, high blood pressure, and other diseases or they have a family trait for heart attacks.
The symptoms that occur in a silent heart attack are often conditions that we disregard or attribute to other things. Silent heart attack symptoms can include:
*Slight discomfort in the arms, chest, or jawbone area that is arrested after rest for a moment
*Tiring easily but eases after we rest
*Heartburn that comes and goes
We previously mentioned the medical tests performed by your doctor for heart attacks symptoms, which is an ECG. Additionally, there is an Echocardiogram which is an ultrasound that shows pictures of the heart’s chambers, valves, walls, and blood vessels. There is also the commonly used stress test that is performed on a treadmill. An ECG is only used for heart disease testing, especially when you tell a doctor that you are experiencing chest pain, arm pain, or rapid heartbeats.
From experience, I can tell you that an ECG contains sensors or electrode pads (10 sensors) that are strategically placed over the front of the body. My sensors have been placed on my arms, legs, the chest, and breast areas. How do I know? Because I have often come home to find them still affixed. An ECG test is painless. There are two types of ECG tests: resting ECG and exercise/stress ECG.
A resting ECG is when you are asked to lie down on the office exam table where electrode pads feed circulatory and heartbeat information to a graph machine for the doctor to interpret. An exercise/stress ECG is given under a physical stress exam. When the heart is elevated, it is often easier to detect changes in our heart rhythm.
You can see this in Bob Harper’s case, where he had a heart attack and he is a fitness guru. Bob is doing fine now and you can recover from a heart attack. Your new best friends following a heart attack recovery are dietary, exercise, and positive mental changes. Also, follow the instructions of your healthcare team who is monitoring you after you have joined the club of being a heart attack survivor.