What You Need to Know - Warning Signs of a Heart Attack

CAD raises your risk for a heart attack. Learn the signs and symptoms of a heart attack and call 911 if you have any of these symptoms:

  • Chest pain or discomfort. This involves uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain in the center or left side of the chest that can be mild or strong. This pain or discomfort often lasts more than a few minutes or goes away and comes back.
  • Upper body discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or upper part of the stomach.
  • Shortness of breath, which may occur with or before chest discomfort.
  • Nausea vomiting, light-headedness or fainting, or breaking out in a cold sweat.

Symptoms may also include sleep problems, being tired and lack of energy.

The symptoms of angina can be similar to the symptoms of a heart attack. Angina pain usually lasts for only a few minutes and goes away with rest.

Chest pain or discomfort that doesn’t go away or changes from its usual pattern (for example, occurs more often or while you’re resting) can be a sign of a heart attack. If you don’t know whether your chest pain is angina or a heart attack, call 911.

Let the people you see regularly know you’re at risk for a heart attack. They can seek emergency care for you if you suddenly faint, collapse or have other severe symptoms.