While each kind of heart issue requires a different treatment, they might have similar warning signs. For this reason, if you are experiencing any of the symtpoms below, you need to visit a cardiologist to ensure your cardiovascular disease is diagnosed correctly.
This is a kind of arrhythmia. Arrhythmia is a problem with the rhythm or rate of the heartbeat.
Most people who have atrial fibrillation experience at least one of the following symptoms:
- Fatigue or weakness
- Feeling faint
- A sudden fluttering, pounding, flip-flopping or racing feeling in your heart (palpitations)
- Trouble breathing during everyday activities (shortness of breath)
- Discomfort in their chests including pressure and pain
Some people who have atrial fibrillation may have no symptoms at all or only experience brief episodes of the symptoms above.
Coronary artery disease
Individuals who have coronary artery disease, commonly experience chest pain (angina). The severity of angina varies. The pain may worsen or occur more frequently as the plaque continues building in the arteries.
According to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, when a man suffers angina, it often feels like a squeezing or pressure in his chest. The feeling might extend to his arms. With men, angina generally worsens with physical activity and goes away at rest. Men usually suffer angina pains triggered by mental stress. A woman may also expereince these symptoms, but women tend to describe other symptoms as well.
Women’s additional symptoms include a sharp, burning chest pain. They are also more likely to experience pain in their jaws, throats, abdomens, necks or backs. Women may experience angina while resting or sleeping. Women with coronary microvascular disease tend to experience angina during their routine activities instead of while exercising.
Other symptoms associated with coronary artery disease:
- Shortness of breath
- A fast heartbeat
The difference between a heart attack and a cardiac arrest
While some believe that a cardiac arrest and heart attack are the same condition, this is not the case. According to the American Heart Association, a heart attack is a circulatory problem whereas; a cardiac arrest is an electrical problem in the heart.
Recognizing a heart attack
The initial symptoms of a heart attack could start as a mild discomfort progressing to significant pain. Heart attack symptoms usually last 30 minutes or more and cannot be relieved by oral medications or rest.
Symptoms of a heart attack include:
- Discomfort that radiates to your jaw, back, throat or arm
- Indigestion, fullness or the feeling of choking (may resemble heartburn)
- Heaviness, pressure, discomfort or pain in your arm, chest or underneath your breastbone
- Nausea, sweating, dizziness or vomiting
- Irregular or rapid heartbeats
- Shortness of breath, anxiety, extreme weakness
If you believe you are experiencing a heart attack, call 911 immediately. You can lessen the damage done to your heart by receiving treatment promptly. A heart attack can lead to heart failure.
Some people who suffer a heart attack do not have any symptoms. This type of heart attack is referred to as ‘silent’ myocardial infarction (MI). A ‘silent’ myocardial infarction occurs more frequently in people who have diabetes.
Signs of Heart Failure
If you suffer heart failure, possible symptoms include:
- Rapid weight gain (as much as 2 to 3 pounds daily)
- Swelling of your feet and/or ankles
- You may also experience swelling in your abdomen, making you feel bloated
- Cough that produces white sputum
- Shortness of breath during activities
- Shortness of breath while resting, especially when lying flat
- Irregular or rapid heartbeats
- Chest pain
If you are experiencing any of the symptoms listed above, you may have cardiovascular disease. You should contact a cardiac specialist at the Arizona Cardiovascular Treatment center today. One of our heart doctors can order the tests necessary to determine if you have cardiac disease. If you do, your heart doctor can prepare a treatment regimen to lessen the damage being done to your heart.