Signs of Heart Attacks in Men vs. Women
By Virgin Islands Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine
May 26, 2021
Category: Cardiology
Tags: Heart Attack  

A heart attack can happen when the flow of blood to the heart is blocked. Some signs of a heart attack include chest pain or tightness and fatigue. Men and women can experience different symptoms of a heart attack. That can make it difficult to recognize the signs of a heart attack if you are not familiar with them. Dr. Ahmet Sayan, the skilled doctor at Virgin Islands Orthopaedics and Medical Specialists in St. Croix, and St. Thomas, can develop an individualized plan to help you reduce your risk for heart disease and heart attacks.

Reducing Your Risk for Heart Disease

Individuals with any type of heart disease, also called cardiovascular disease, have an increased risk of experiencing a heart attack. Examples of heart disease include coronary artery disease, congestive heart failure, cardiac arrest, and arrhythmia. Cardiovascular problems can also lead to a stroke.

There are many different ways to reduce your risk of developing heart disease or suffering from a heart attack. The knowledgeable doctors at our offices in St. Croix, and St. Thomas, can assess your risk and recommend specific steps you can take to reduce it. Reducing your risk for heart problems can include:

  • Making dietary changes (e.g., eating leaner meats)
  • Exercising regularly (e.g., walking 30 minutes per day)
  • Quitting smoking (smoking increases your risk for heart disease)
  • Monitoring and managing blood pressure and cholesterol levels
  • Maintaining a healthy weight
  • Limiting consumption of alcohol
  • Managing and reducing stress

Heart Attack Symptoms in Men

Heart disease is the number one cause of death among men in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Taking steps to reduce your risk for heart disease can help prevent heart attacks, but it is still important to recognize the signs of one. Symptoms of a heart attack in men include:

  • Shortness of breath not due to physical exertion
  • Squeezing pain or pressure in the chest
  • Pain or discomfort in the upper body (back, neck, or jaw)
  • Pain in one or both arms
  • Nausea or vomiting

Heart Attack Symptoms in Women

The CDC reports that heart disease is also the leading cause of death among women in the U.S. Women experience many of the same symptoms as men, but are also likely to develop additional symptoms. Signs of a heart attack in women include:

  • Shortness of breath not due to physical exertion
  • Pain in the lower chest/upper abdomen
  • Pain or discomfort in the upper body (jaw, neck, or back)
  • Pain in one or both arms
  • Nausea, vomiting, or indigestion
  • Breaking out in a cold sweat
  • Lightheadedness or fainting

It is essential that you recognize the signs of a heart attack in men versus women since the symptoms are not always the same. Schedule a cardiovascular screening with Dr. Sayan by calling Virgin Islands Orthopaedics and Medical Specialists in St. Croix, or St. Thomas, at (340) 692-5000, or (340) 714-2845.

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