Answered by: Dr Ramzdhan
Doctor, is it true women have different symptoms than men when it comes to heart attack? What should a woman look out for to suspect for heart attack?
"Hi there! Thank you for your question. Historically heart disease may often be thought of as a problem for mainly men but heart disease is actually the most common cause of death for both women and men. The difficulty is that although most of the symptoms are the same, there are some symptoms that are more common and experienced more in women. Fortunately, women can take steps to understand their unique symptoms of heart disease and to begin to reduce their risk of heart disease.
The examples heart attack symptoms for women are :
1. Pain, pressure or discomfort in the chest. This is most common heart attack symptom in women but unlike in men it is not always severe or even the most prominent symptom. There are occasions that women may have a heart attack without chest pain.
2. Neck, jaw, shoulder, upper back or abdominal discomfort
3. Shortness of breath
4. Pain in one or both arms
5. Nausea or vomiting
7. Lightheadedness or dizziness
8. Unusual fatigue
Women are more likely than men to have heart attack symptoms other than chest pain. These symptoms can be more subtle than the obvious crushing chest pain often associated with heart attacks. Women often describe the chest pain as tightness or pressure rather than a typical crushing pain. This happens because women tend to have blockages not only in their main arteries but also in the smaller arteries that supply blood to the heart (coronary microvascular disease). Women’s symptoms may occur more often when women are resting, or even when they’re asleep. Mental stress also may trigger heart attack symptoms in women. Women tend to present to the hospital late because their symptoms are usually unrelated to hearth attack, causing the heart to already be damaged. So I suggest if you are experiencing the symptoms above or feel like you are having a heart attack, ask someone to take you to the hospital immediately.