These Symptoms Often Precede Heart Attacks
Life doesn’t imitate a movie, so people don’t necessarily clutch their chest suddenly and fall dramatically to the ground with a heart attack. Symptoms often begin slowly, with mild pain, discomfort and perhaps flu‐like symptoms.
Signs may be apparent months or even years before an attack. Cardiologist Jonathan Goldstein notes, "The heart, together with the arteries that feed it, is one big muscle, and when it starts to fail the symptoms can show up in many parts of the body."
Researchers believe the following symptoms, if they persist, may signal a problem. If you notice ongoing warning signs – especially if two or more are present – schedule a visit to your doctor.
NECK PAIN: If pain begins in the neck and radiates out in a line rather than remaining fixed, and persists despite treatment with ice, heat or massage, it may not be a simple muscle strain.
JAW AND EAR PAIN: Ongoing jaw pain that radiates down to the shoulder also should be checked, especially if it’s on the left side.
DIZZINESS, FAINTNESS, SHORTNESS OF BREATH: If you feel dizzy, faint or can’t catch your breath while pursuing everyday activities, you may be experiencing a precursor to an attack.
INDIGESTION, NAUSEA, HEARTBURN: Severe indigestion, nausea and related problems such as heartburn or vomiting can signal an impending heart attack.
SEXUAL PROBLEMS: Erectile dysfunction can have many causes, but is often found in men with cardiovascular disease.
Like this article? Like us on Facebook , too. Or follow us on Twitter .
And be sure to stay in the local loop by subscribing to our newsletter
—every morning we’ll deliver Carlsbad news, announcements, blogs and
calendar events right to your inbox.