Heart Attack Symptoms in Womenby Larry Weinrauch, M.D. Health Professional
Heart attack symptoms are different for men and women. Dr. Weinrauch explains the warning signs women need to watch out for. Pass this along to someone you love.
Heart attack warning signs for women.
Very few pre-menopausal women have heart attacks, unless they smoke, have diabetes, or are on birth control pills for a long period of time. Smoking seems to be the biggest risk factor:
Nausea and vomiting that won't stop
Breathlessness (but not sighing) with exertion or especially if it wakes you up at night
Chest discomfort that starts behind the breast bone and radiates to either shoulder or arm, neck, or to the lower (but not upper) jaw
Discomfort in the lower jaw especially if it occurs only with exertion or will not go away
Discomfort in the upper back especially if it occurs only with exertion or will not go away
Discomfort in the chest or back that occurs when doing usual chores after a large meal
Sudden onset of weakness that won't go away
Sudden racing heart sensation with a very fast pulse
Sudden loss of consciousness
Physical inability to perform usual household chores
Who is most at risk with these symptoms?
The more of these factors that apply to you, the greater your risk:
Menstruation has stopped
Family history of arteriosclerotic heart disease before age 60
High blood pressure (even treated)
Diabetes (even mild, even treated)
High cholesterol (even treated)