Although it is often believed that heart disease is a problem for men, but heart disease is the leading cause of death in both men and women across the world.
One challenge is that some symptoms of heart disease in women may be different from those in men.
Fortunately, women can take steps to understand their unique symptoms of heart disease and start reducing their risk of heart disease.
Heart Attack Symptoms for Women:
The most common symptom of heart attack in women is a specific type of pain, pressure or discomfort in the chest. But that’s not always serious or even the most important symptom, especially in women. And sometimes women may have the problem without chest pain.
Women more often than men have symptoms of a heart attack that has nothing to do with chest pain, such as:
- Neck, shoulder, jaw, upper back or abdominal discomfort
- Shortness of breath
- Nausea or vomiting
- Pain in one or both arms
- Unusual fatigue
- Lightheadedness or dizziness
These symptoms can be more subtle than the obvious overwhelming chest pains often associated with heart attacks. Women may describe chest pain as pressure or oppression. This may be due to the fact that women have a blockage, not only in their main arteries but also in the small arteries that supply the heart, a disease called small vessel heart disease or coronary microvascular disease.
Women’s symptoms can occur more often when women are resting, or even when they are sleeping. Mental stress can also trigger heart attack symptoms in women.
Women usually go to emergency rooms after heart damage because their symptoms are not associated with a heart attack and women can minimize their symptoms. If these symptoms occur or you suspect a heart attack, seek medical help immediately. Do not go in emergencies unless you have other options.
Heart Disease in Women Facts:
- Heart disease is the leading cause of death in women.
- The symptoms of a heart attack may be different in women than in men.
- Younger women with heart disease die earlier than men of the same age with heart disease. It is particularly important that women and their physicians are aware of the early detection of primary prevention risks.
- Although only 13% of women interviewed by the American Heart Association (AHA) were the number one killer, they considered heart disease to be the biggest health risk. Awareness can be an obstacle to timely assessment and treatment.
- Cardiovascular disease (CVD) can be prevented and reversed depending on lifestyle changes.
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