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Know the Signs

Knowing and recognizing heart attack warning signs can save a life. When it comes to your heart, every minute matters.

A heart attack can occur at any time- and they are not always sudden and intense. The Society of Chest Pain Centers reports that 50% of sudden cardiac deaths occur outside of a hospital, suggesting that many people do not act on early warning signs. Knowing and recognizing heart attack warning signs can save a life. When it comes to your heart, every minute matters.

Many heart attacks start slowly with only mild pain or discomfort. Some people do not experience chest pain but instead have other signs. Signs of a heart attack include:

  • Chest discomfort
    • Uncomfortable pressure, heaviness
    • Squeezing, tightness
    • Possible burning
    • Discomfort lasts more than two minutes, may come and go
  • Discomfort in other areas of the upper body
    • One or both arms
    • Back
    • Neck, jaw
    • Stomach
  • Other signs (with or without chest discomfort)
    • Shortness of breath
    • Cold sweat
    • Nausea, vomiting
    • Light-headedness
    • Extreme weakness/fatigue

If you or someone you love is experiencing any sign or symptoms of a heart attack, call 9-1-1 immediately and go directly to the emergency room.

Click here to take our online heart risk assessment to determine if you are at risk for a heart attack.

Click here to download our infographic and learn more about the signs and symptoms of a heart attack.

Are You Having A Heart Attack?

Heart attacks can happen anywhere, anytime. Recognizing the symptoms can save a live.

In the movies, signs of a heart attack seem straightforward and dramatic. In real life, heart attack symptoms can happen anywhere on your body- not just in your chest. They can vary in intensity and are often different for men and women. It’s important to know what to watch for. If you experience these symptoms and think you are having a heart attack, seek immediate emergency medical help by dialing 911.

  • Chest: pressure, aching, burning sensation, shortness of breath, fullness, squeezing or rapid heart rate
  • Arms: heaviness, weakness, aching, numbness, pinching, pain, prickling or discomfort
  • Back: pain, usually between the shoulder blades
  • Shoulders, neck and jaw: aching, pain, prickling or discomfort
  • Abdomen: nausea, pain or indigestion
  • Head: dizziness, anxiety, memory loss, trouble concentrating,  lightheadedness or confusion
  • All over: unusual fatigue, sweating, weakness, flu-like symptoms, feeling overheated or sleep disturbances

Click here to download our infographic and learn more about the signs and symptoms of a heart attack.

Click here to take our online heart risk assessment to determine if you at risk for a heart attack.

If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 911.

Minutes Matter

When a heart attack occurs, acting fast can minimize damage to the body’s most important muscle.

According to the National Heart, Blood and Lung Institute, of the people who die from heart attacks each year, nearly half die within an hour of the first symptoms- before they reach the hospital.  Recognizing the symptoms and seeking emergency medical care immediately can minimize damage to the body’s most important muscle- and could save your life.

Time is muscle

The less time that passes between the start of heart attack symptoms and the restoration of blood flow via a surgical procedure, the less damage your heart is likely to sustain.

To put time on your side, learn what a heart attack feels like and what to do if you think you are experiencing one. Symptoms such as chest discomfort, shortness of breath and nausea are common in both men and women, while most people older than 85 do not experience chest pain during a heart attack. Learn more about the different warning signs for men and women by visitng the His and Her tab.  

Think you’re having a heart attack?

Note the time of your first symptom and call 911 within five minutes. By traveling to the ER in an ambulance instead of driving yourself or riding with a friend or family member, emergency responders are able to begin lifesaving treatment immediately

Even if the episode proves to be a false alarm, you’ll gain fresh appreciation for your heart and invaluable experience in handling a cardiac emergency.

Click here to take our online heart risk assessment to determine if you at risk for a heart attack.

Click here to download our infographic and learn more about the signs and symptoms of a heart attack..

If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 911.

His and Hers Heart Attack Symptoms

Basic symptoms of heart attack include chest tightness or pressure and/or pain in the chest, neck, jaw, arms or back. While heart attacks can occur in both men and women, often the warning signs can look different. According to the National Institute for Health, major symptoms prior to a heart attack can include:

  • For Women:
    • Unusual fatigue
    • Sleep disturbance
    • Shortness of breath
    • Indigestion
    • Anxiety
  • For Men:
    • Shortness of breath
    • Weakness
    • Unusual fatigue
    • Cold sweat
    • Dizziness
  • Other heart attack warning signs both men and women may experience include:
    • Arm, back, neck, jaw or abdominal discomfort
    • Feelings of faintness
    • Nausea
    • Shortness of breath, even if your chest feels fine
    • Sudden perspiration

Never ignore any possible symptoms of a heart attack. If you believe that you are having a heart attack, call 911. A false alarm investigated is better than a heart attack ignored.

Click here to take our online heart risk assessment to determine if you at risk for a heart attack.

Click here to download our infographic and learn more about the signs and symptoms of a heart attack.

If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 911.