Heart attack symptoms may present differently in women
2/1/2017 4:29 PM
Ischemia refers to an inadequate blood supply to an organ or part of the body. When the coronary artery that supplies blood to the heart becomes narrowed or blocked, ischemia sets in. This is when heart attack symptoms begin.
Heart attack symptoms often present differently in men and women. In men, the most common symptoms are chest pain and tightness, extreme sweating and shortness of breath. In women, chest pain is not ideally the number one signal of a heart attack. Women are more likely to experience neck and jaw pain. Men can experience these symptoms as well, but it is less common.
Additionally, the average heart attack age differs among genders. For men, the risk for a heart attack climbs after age 45. A woman’s risk doesn’t catch up to a man’s until after age 55.
Heart attack symptoms should never be ignored. It is imperative for a patient to receive intervention within 90 minutes of the onset of symptoms. At Central Texas Medical Center, the cardiac catheterization labs are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. This allows local patients to be treated for heart attack symptoms as soon as possible.
Visit ctmc.org to learn more about cardiac services at CTMC, and call (512) 575-2098 to schedule a $90 heart scan during the month of February. A physician order is required.
About the Author
Roger DeHoyos, RN, BSN, is the director of Central Texas Medical Center's Cardiac Cath Lab and Cardiac Rehabilitation Program.