Recognizing the Signs of a Heart Attack

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ED-92202138Recognizing the warning signs of a possible heart attack* is your first line of defense:

  • Chest discomfort: Most heart attacks involve discomfort in the center of the chest that lasts more than a few minutes, or that goes away and comes back. It can feel like uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain.
  • Discomfort in other areas of the upper body: Symptoms can include pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach.
  • Shortness of breath: This may occur with or without chest discomfort.
  • Other signs of a heart attack may include breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness.

Death from a heart attack can occur within an hour after the onset of symptoms. If you can’t access emergency medical services, have someone drive you to the hospital right away. If you’re the one having symptoms, don’t drive yourself.

Additional information about heart attacks is available through our Online Health Encyclopedia or by visiting the American Heart Association’s website.

*American Heart Association