· Uncomfortable pressure, fullness, squeezing, or pain in the center of the chest. These symptoms can range from mild to severe, and they may come and go.
· Discomfort in other areas, such as the neck, arms, jaw, back, or stomach.
· Shortness of breath, lightheadedness, nausea, or breaking out in a cold sweat.
Women may get chest pain or discomfort, but in many cases, it's not the most obvious symptom. Instead, they're more likely than men to have these symptoms:
· Unusual fatigue
· Nausea or indigestion
· Dizziness or lightheadedness
· Abdominal discomfort that may feel like indigestion
· Discomfort described as pressure/ tightness or an ache in the neck, shoulder, or upper back
In the weeks before an actual heart attack, some women may get these signs as a warning that an artery is blocked. If you develop unexplained fatigue, shortness of breath, or abdominal pressure that feels like indigestion, call your doctor, says Nieca Goldberg, MD, a cardiologist and chief of Women's Cardiac Care at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City. "That's the time to come in for an evaluation."
A stroke is also known as a "brain attack." Arteries to the brain become blocked or rupture, causing brain cells to die. Getting medical treatment within an hour after symptoms begin can reduce disability following a stroke. Strokes can cause permanent brain damage and paralysis.
If you or someone near you has stroke symptoms, call 911 right away and get to an emergency room as soon as possible, preferably within an hour, experts say. Every minute counts; the longer a stroke continues, the greater the potential damage.
Stroke symptoms include:
· Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm, or leg, especially if it occurs on one side of the body
· Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding
· Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes, double vision
· Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination
· Sudden severe headache with no known cause.
If you think someone may be having a stroke, act F.A.S.T.1 and do the following simple test:
F—Face: Ask the person to smile. Does one side of the face droop?
A—Arms: Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?
S—Speech: Ask the person to repeat a simple phrase. Is their speech slurred or strange?
T—Time: If you observe any of these signs, call 9-1-1 immediately.
Note the time when any symptoms first appear. Some treatments for stroke only work if given in the first 3 hours after symptoms appear.