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Knowing the signs and symptoms of heart disease can be the difference between going for a run, or taking an unexpected trip to the hospital. The difficulty is that the signs and symptoms are often mistaken for other ailments. Knowing when these symptoms could be the sign of a heart emergency is vitally important to getting prompt medical attention. It is equally important to keep in mind that men and women often present different symptoms.
For some, indigestion is an unfortunate everyday occurrence. But for others who may not have a history of indigestion, this can be a sign that a heart attack is approaching. According to research by the National Institutes of Health, this can be especially true for women. Look for indigestion to be combined with jaw, chest or back pain, anxiety or excessive sweating.
Waking up after sleeping awkwardly, and the neck pain that follows, is the worst. But, if you experience neck or jaw pain not related to an injury, or stomach pain that you can't pinpoint, it could be your body's way of telling you that your heart needs attention. These symptoms may be combined with generalized weakness or lack of energy.
Migraine headaches can be a warning sign of a heart attack. Women, in particular, who experience a migraine accompanied by flashes of light, blind spots or tingling in the hand or face should consult their doctor immediately as this can be a warning sign that a heart attack is approaching.
Everyone feels fatigue from time to time, and more often than not this is just a symptom of life. But if the fatigue just doesn't feel right, that can be a warning sign for heart trouble. Often times, the fatigue doesn't feel like anything you may have experienced before. There can be a generalized weakness associated with the fatigue, combined with other symptoms like shortness of breath. If you're concerned, don't ignore the symptoms.
As humans, we always try to tough it out. But if you're feeling weaker than normal, it may be worth giving the doctor a call.
Most heart attacks involve discomfort in the center of the chest that lasts more than a few minutes, or that goes away and comes back. It can feel like uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain.
Symptoms can include pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach.
Other signs may include breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness.