Heart disease remains the leading cause of death for men and women worldwide. Contrary to what you can see in the movies, it is difficult to ignore the symptoms of a heart attack. “Two-thirds of women will have symptoms of a non-Hollywood heart attack,” says K. Noelle Berry Merz, MD, director of the Barbra Streisand Women’s Heart Center at Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute in Los Angeles.
Chest tightness and pain in the upper body are more obvious, but heart attack has many symptoms that can be confused with other diseases (nausea, heartburn, fatigue, etc.). Recognizing the symptoms of a heart attack and getting immediate help can be the difference between life and death. Here are the most common symptoms to watch out for.
According to the American Heart Association, the first symptom of a heart attack is “uncomfortable pressure, tightness, fullness, or pain in the center of the chest.” This discomfort can appear in waves that last for more than a few minutes at a time.