Heart Attack Signs: Understanding Them in Real Time
According to the American Heart Association, the signs and symptoms of a heart attack can vary from one individual to another. Some patients may experience sudden and intense symptoms and are immediately aware that a heart attack is occurring. However, the AHA states that the majority of symptoms begin slowly, and often patients are not certain what may be wrong. The American Heart Association lists the following symptoms as possible signs of a heart attack:
Mild pain or discomfort in the chest. The patient may experience a feeling of uncomfortable pressure or squeezing coming from the center of the chest.
Pain or discomfort in other areas of the body including the jaw, one or both arms, shoulder, back, neck or stomach.
Shortness of breath may occur with or without chest pain.
Cold sweats, lightheadedness, or nausea can also be possible signs of a heart attack.
The American Heart Association recommends that you call for emergency help immediately if you believe you are someone you know is having a heart attack. Since emergency medical staff has been trained to begin treatment on a heart attack victim immediately, it is preferable for the patient to be transported to the hospital via ambulance rather than by car.
Specific tests can confirm whether or not the patient has suffered a heart attack. The AMA says your doctor will give you a complete physical examination, review your medical history, and give you an electrocardiogram to determine how much, if any, damage has been done to the heart.