Each February, the American Heart Association (AHA) shines a spotlight
on the number one killer of all Americans - heart disease - through a
variety of awareness events.
While heart disease is a risk for all Americans, women are still at a greater
risk. In fact, cardiovascular diseases cause one in three women’s
deaths each year, killing approximately one woman every minute. Over the
last 10 years, AHA has made remarkable progress through its Go Red for
Women Campaign; however, there is still much work to do. Nearly 1,100
women are still dying each day
A large portion of our nursing population consists of women. As we know
the signs and symptoms of a heart attack, sometimes we ignore or overlook
the “non-traditional” signs and symptoms listed below:
Heart Attack Signs in Women
1. Uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain in the center of
your chest. It lasts more than a few minutes, or goes away and comes back.
2. Pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach.
3. Shortness of breath with or without chest discomfort.
4. Other signs such as breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness.
As with men, women’s most common heart attack symptom is
chest pain or discomfort. But women are somewhat more likely than men to experience
some of the other common symptoms, particularly shortness of breath, nausea/vomiting
and back or jaw pain.
If you have any of these signs, don’t wait more than five minutes
before calling for help. Call 9-1-1 and get to a hospital right away.