The Heart of the Problem
Apr 02, · Swelling (edema) in your lower legs is another sign of a heart problem. When your heart doesn't work as well, blood flow slows and backs up in the veins in your legs. This causes fluid to build up in your tissues. You may also have swelling in your stomach or notice some weight gain. Next, learn about the most common sign of heart problems that a majority of individuals experience: chest pain. Chest Pain Livestrong. Elongated chest pain is the primary sign of a heart attack. This is not a pain that hits the chest for just a moment. Most heart attacks involve an intense discomfort in the center of the chest that lasts.
Not every case of heart disease what does puesta mean in spanish as dramatic as what you see on television medical dramas. In fact, according to a report from Harvard Health Publishingsome 45 percent of heart attacks are categorized as silent myocardial infarctions SMIsmeaning that "when they occur, their symptoms lack the intensity of a classic heart attack.
But if not every heart disease diagnosis is glaringly obvious, then how are doctors—let alone you —supposed to know if your ticker's a time bomb? Getting a routine checkup is a good place to start, but it also pays to learn these silent signs of a heart attack so you know if and when to seek emergency treatment. Since so many patients mistake this warning sign for something less severe, they often put off seeing a doctor until their condition has worsened past the point of treatment—making it all the more important for individuals to pay attention to this symptom when it occurs.
Though most people associate heart disease with pain on the left side of the chest—where the heart is located—it is actually more common for a person experiencing a heart attack to feel pressure or pain in the center.
Pain anywhere in your upper body could be a symptom of heart disease—not just your chest. According to the Cleveland Clinic, when the heart is having difficulty functioning, it activates nerves that can trigger pain elsewhere in the body. So, if you're dealing with discomfort in your back and you can't explain why, it might be time to get your heart checked out—just to be safe. Women going through menopause aren't the only people who experience hot flashes.
When Canadian researchers surveyed 1, heart attack patients inthey found that approximately 45 percent of men experienced this symptom—both with and without accompanying chest pain. Breaking out in a cold sweat could mean more than just a case of nerves. In the same Canadian study, cold sweats were one of the most common symptoms associated with a silent heart attack. Approximately 47 percent of men experienced this symptom, compared to just 40 percent of women.
While some men having a heart attack—86 percent, to be exact—experience chest pain as a symptom, others feel the agonizing discomfort of myocardial infarction in their shoulder. In the same Canadian study, 41 percent of male heart attack patients said that they experienced pain in either their left arm or shoulder.
Examples might include arm or neck pain. Indeed, in the Canadian study, 19 percent of men noted that they'd experienced neck pain, and 26 percent noted having pain in both arms at some point.
Sleep problems aren't just a risk factor for heart disease—they're also a symptom. The shortness of breath and heart palpitations often associated with heart disease are a frequent precursor to sleep disturbances like sleep apnea, orthopnea, and insomnia in the months leading up to a heart disease diagnosis. The good news? Those sleep disturbances usually subside once their root causes are treated. Feeling confused isn't necessarily a sign that something's amiss with your brain.
According to the American Heart Associationheart failure directly impacts how much sodium is in your blood, and this, in turn, can lead to confusion and impaired thinking. You can once again thank impaired blood flow for this subtle heart attack symptom. Because a heart attack causes the blood vessels throughout the body to narrow, it limits the amount of blood your extremities receive and therefore causes them to go numb. Feeling sick to your stomach?
It could be because that what is an aye aye you ate at lunch was past its prime—or it could be a silent sign your heart isn't working like it's supposed to.
This happens because, during a heart attack, the heart diverts blood away from the digestive system, thereby causing unpleasant gastrointestinal issues. If you're experiencing serious lightheadedness, it could be your heart crying out for help. This occurs because, when your heart isn't working effectively, your major organs— like your brain —are getting less blood and therefore can't function properly.
Usually, you can differentiate dizziness caused by heart disease from less serious lightheadedness thanks to the accompanying symptoms. Unless you're running a 5K or taking an intense spinning classyou shouldn't be gasping for air like your life depends on it. If you find yourself short of breath while sleeping or watching TV, this could be because blood is backing up in your pulmonary veins and leaking into your lungs where it shouldn't be.
Toothaches don't always mean it's time to schedule a trip to the dentist. Rather, for a surprising number of male heart attack victims—13 percent in the Canadian study, to be exact— tooth pain was one of the silent symptoms of their heart problem. Since what is the sign of heart problem are such a common malady, it's easy to brush them off as being stress-related or tied to a lack of sleep.
However, in some instances, that headache may be an indication of a serious heart issue. In the Canadian study, 16 percent of male patients reported experiencing a headache while they were having a heart attack. A general feeling of lethargy how to hard boil one egg frailty could mean that you have the flu —or it could indicate that you're having a heart attack.
In the ER, "some [heart attack] patients report more vague symptoms like generalized weakness, while still others report an ominous sensation that they're going to die," says Gatz. According to the American Heart Association, unexplainable fatigue is one of the most common silent signs of heart disease.
That's because when the heart is unable to pump an adequate amount of blood throughout the body, the circulatory system responds by diverting blood away from less vital organs, like the muscles in your limbs. This, in turn, causes the tiredness that patients with heart disease often experience. All Rights Reserved. Open side menu button. Sometimes you have to read between the lines to find a diagnosis. By Morgan Greenwald September 11, Read This Next. Latest News. It may actually be an early warning sign, too.
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Sep 17, · The most common sign of heart attack in men is chest discomfort that includes squeezing, pressure, or pain. It used to be thought that only chest pain . The "textbook" heart attack involves sudden, crushing chest pain and difficulty breathing, often brought on by exertion. Many heart attacks don't happen that way, though. The signs and symptoms of a heart attack vary greatly from person to person. Heartburn itself can accompany other symptoms of heart . 1 day ago · The Heart of the Problem. April 20, Sign up for desktop notifications (the red bell symbol). Running a website is not only expensive, it also takes a lot of time and effort. No one likes ads, but very few people will donate, hence the reason most of us have ads.
A buildup of fatty plaques in your arteries, or atherosclerosis ath-ur-o-skluh-ROE-sis can damage your blood vessels and heart. Plaque buildup causes narrowed or blocked blood vessels that can lead to a heart attack, chest pain angina or stroke. Coronary artery disease symptoms may be different for men and women.
For instance, men are more likely to have chest pain. Women are more likely to have other signs and symptoms along with chest discomfort, such as shortness of breath, nausea and extreme fatigue. You might not be diagnosed with coronary artery disease until you have a heart attack, angina, stroke or heart failure.
It's important to watch for cardiovascular symptoms and discuss concerns with your doctor. Cardiovascular disease can sometimes be found early with regular evaluations.
Your heart may beat too quickly, too slowly or irregularly. Heart arrhythmia signs and symptoms can include:. Serious heart defects that you're born with congenital heart defects usually are noticed soon after birth. Heart defect signs and symptoms in children could include:.
Less serious congenital heart defects are often not diagnosed until later in childhood or during adulthood. Signs and symptoms of congenital heart defects that usually aren't immediately life-threatening include:. In early stages of cardiomyopathy, you may have no symptoms. As the condition worsens, symptoms may include:.
Endocarditis is an infection that affects the inner lining of your heart chambers and heart valves endocardium. Heart infection signs and symptoms can include:. The heart has four valves — the aortic, mitral, pulmonary and tricuspid valves — that open and close to direct blood flow through your heart.
Many things can damage your heart valves, leading to narrowing stenosis , leaking regurgitation or insufficiency or improper closing prolapse. Depending on which valve isn't working properly, valvular heart disease signs and symptoms generally include:. Heart disease is easier to treat when detected early, so talk to your doctor about your concerns regarding your heart health. If you're concerned about developing heart disease, talk to your doctor about steps you can take to reduce your heart disease risk.
This is especially important if you have a family history of heart disease. If you think you may have heart disease, based on new signs or symptoms you're having, make an appointment to see your doctor.
Heart disease causes depend on your specific type of heart disease. There are many different types of heart disease. To understand the causes of heart disease, it helps to understand how the heart works. A normal heart has two upper and two lower chambers.
The upper chambers, the right and left atria, receive incoming blood. The lower chambers, the more muscular right and left ventricles, pump blood out of your heart. The heart valves, which keep blood flowing in the right direction, are gates at the chamber openings.
Your heart is a pump. It's a muscular organ about the size of your fist, located slightly left of center in your chest. Your heart is divided into the right and the left sides. Four heart valves keep your blood moving the right way by opening only one way and only when they need to.
To work properly, the valves must be formed properly, must open all the way and must close tightly so there's no leakage. The four valves are:. Your heart's electrical wiring keeps it beating. Your heartbeat controls the continuous exchange of oxygen-rich blood with oxygen-poor blood. This exchange keeps you alive. If you have too many cholesterol particles in your blood, cholesterol may accumulate on your artery walls. Eventually, deposits called plaque may form.
The deposits may narrow or block your arteries. The plaque can also burst, causing a blood clot. A buildup of fatty plaques in your arteries atherosclerosis is the most common cause of coronary artery disease. Unhealthy lifestyle habits, such as a poor diet, lack of exercise, being overweight and smoking, can lead to atherosclerosis.
In a healthy person with a normal, healthy heart, it's unlikely for a deadly arrhythmia to develop without some outside trigger, such as an electrical shock or the use of illegal drugs. However, in a heart that's diseased or deformed, the heart's electrical signals may not properly start or travel through the heart, making arrhythmias more likely to develop. Congenital heart defects usually develop while a baby is in the womb. Heart defects can develop as the heart develops, about a month after conception, changing the flow of blood in the heart.
Some medical conditions, medications and genes may play a role in causing heart defects. Heart defects can also develop in adults. As you age, your heart's structure can change, causing a heart defect. The cause of cardiomyopathy, a thickening or enlarging of the heart muscle, may depend on the type:.
A heart infection, such as endocarditis, is caused when germs reach your heart muscle. The most common causes of heart infection include:. Many things can cause diseases of your heart valves. You may be born with valvular disease, or the valves may be damaged by conditions such as:. Certain types of heart disease, such as heart defects, can't be prevented. However, the same lifestyle changes that can improve your heart disease can help you prevent it, including:.
Heart disease care at Mayo Clinic. Mayo Clinic does not endorse companies or products. Advertising revenue supports our not-for-profit mission. Don't delay your care at Mayo Clinic Schedule your appointment now for safe in-person care. This content does not have an English version. This content does not have an Arabic version. Request an appointment. Overview Heart disease describes a range of conditions that affect your heart.
Heart diseases include: Blood vessel disease, such as coronary artery disease Heart rhythm problems arrhythmias Heart defects you're born with congenital heart defects Heart valve disease Disease of the heart muscle Heart infection. Request an Appointment at Mayo Clinic. Chambers and valves of the heart Open pop-up dialog box Close. Chambers and valves of the heart A normal heart has two upper and two lower chambers.
Development of atherosclerosis Open pop-up dialog box Close. Development of atherosclerosis If you have too many cholesterol particles in your blood, cholesterol may accumulate on your artery walls.
More Information Heart disease care at Mayo Clinic Heart disease prevention Omega-3 in fish Red wine, antioxidants and resveratrol Can vitamins help prevent a heart attack?
Fasting diet: Can it improve my heart health? Healthy heart for life: Avoiding heart disease Fact or Fiction? Share on: Facebook Twitter. Show references What is cardiovascular disease? American Heart Association.
Accessed Oct. Heart-healthy living. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Riggin EA. Allscripts EPSi. Mayo Clinic. Ferry AV, et al. Presenting symptoms in men and women diagnosed with myocardial infarction using sex-specific criteria. Journal of the American Heart Association. Symptoms, diagnosis and monitoring of arrhythmia. Overview of congenital cardiovascular anomalies. Merck Manual Professional Version. Congenital heart defects. What is cardiomyopathy?
What is heart inflammation? Heart failure. Accessed Nov. Bonow RO, et al.