With February being American Heart Month, Sandhills Regional Medical Center wants residents to know the signs of a heart attack.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, more than 900,000 people have a heart attack every year. Out of those 900,000 people, more than 600,000 die from a heart attack.
According to the American Heart Association, not everyone experiences sudden, severe chest pain. Other symptoms, such as sweating or lightheadedness, can signal a heart attack.
The warning signs for a heart attack include chest discomfort, such a pressure or squeezing in the center of left side of the chest, discomfort in other areas of the body such as the jaw, neck, back and one or both arms, shortness of breath with or without chest discomfort, nausea, vomiting, lightheadedness, sudden dizziness, unusual fatigue or breaking out in a cold sweat.
If there are any sudden, new symptoms or changes in the patterns of symptoms that are already there, that can also be a warning sign.
Debbie Wright-Thomasson, cardiologist at Hamlet Cardiology, said that chest pain is the most common signs for both men and women.
“But women are more likely to experience other symptoms such as pain in the jaw or back, shortness of breath, or nausea. The more signs and symptoms you have, the more likely it is that you’re having a heart attack,” said Wright-Thomasson.
If symptoms of a heart attack do occur, call 911 immediately. Even after surviving a heart attack, the heart may still be damaged which can affect the heart’s rhythm, pumping action and blood circulation, according to the CDC.
Also, know the symptoms of a heart attack and have an emergency plan in place in case a heart attack occurs.
— Staff Writer Laura Edington can be reached at 910-997-3111, ext. 18, or by email at email@example.com.