Heart attack is a fatal event caused by interruption of blood flow to the heart. Knowing a woman's specific symptoms of a heart attack can help a person get medical help quickly, which can save their life
Women are less likely than men to survive their first heart attack. This may be due to the fact that the symptoms are different between the sexes. Women are more likely to have a "silent" heart attack or abnormal symptoms.
Additionally, female biology creates unique risk factors for heart attack because certain diseases that increase risk, such as polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), are not present in male biology.
Heart attack symptoms in women
Chest pain is a common symptom of a heart attack.
Many people expect a sudden heart attack. But research shows that women experience symptoms for several weeks before a heart attack.
According to a 2003 study of 515 women with a heart attack, 80 percent of women had at least one symptom at least 4 weeks before a heart attack.
Symptoms can be persistent or they can come and go and can even interfere with sleep.
A woman experiencing any of these symptoms should seek help immediately, as a heart attack can be fatal, whether the symptoms are mild or severe.
Eight symptoms of a heart attack:
The most common symptom of a heart attack in both men and women is chest pain or discomfort.
It can be described as:
However, women can have a heart attack without chest discomfort.
In a 2003 study, 29.7 percent of the women surveyed experienced chest discomfort in the weeks leading up to the attack. Additionally, 57 percent had chest pain during a heart attack.
Abnormal fatigue is often reported in the weeks leading up to a heart attack. Fatigue is also experienced before the event.
Even simple activities that don't require a lot of effort can cause feelings of exhaustion.
Feeling weak or agitated is a common heart attack symptom in women.
In addition to this weakness or tremor:
Shortness of breath or heavy breathing, especially when accompanied by fatigue or chest pain, can indicate heart problems.
Some women may experience shortness of breath while sleeping and the symptom may be relieved when they sit upright.
Excessive sweating without a common cause is another common heart attack symptom in women.
Cold and flatulence can also be indicative of heart problems.
It is generally nonspecific and is not attributed to a specific muscle or joint in the upper body.
Pain begins in one area and gradually spreads to others, or it may appear suddenly.
Difficulty falling asleep and waking up abnormally can be problems before a heart attack.
In a 2003 study, nearly half of women reported trouble sleeping a few weeks before a heart attack.
These interruptions can include:
Some women experience abdominal pain or pressure before a heart attack.
Other digestive problems associated with a heart attack include:
Risk factors for heart attack in women:
Age: People 55 and older have a higher risk of having a heart attack. Premenopausal hormones provide some protection against heart disease.
Family history: A male relative who has had a heart attack at age 55 or a female relative who is 65 years old has a family history of heart attack and is at risk.
Health Status: Signs like high blood pressure and high cholesterol increase the risk of heart attack in both men and women.
Medical conditions: people with diseases like diabetes, esophagitis, autoimmune disorders are more likely to have a heart attack. Diseases such as endometriosis, polycystic ovary syndrome, or a history of preeclampsia during pregnancy also increase the risk.
Lifestyle Choices: Tobacco or stimulant medications, for example cocaine or amphetamines, a sedentary lifestyle, or high levels of stress, increase the risk of heart attack.
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