While you may think you know what a classic heart attack looks like (and no, it doesn’t always resemble what we’ve all seen in movies or on television), it’s not that obvious when it comes to recognizing cardiovascular disease.  And new studies now show that men (as opposed to women) may actually exhibit more atypical symptoms indicative of a heart attack.

Heart disease can be a silent, almost-unnoticed intruder in your daily life – until it causes significant troubles such as a heart attack or artery blockage that requires surgical intervention.

You may experience:

    • Fatigue or weakness that can be intermittent or come on quite suddenly
    • Shortness of breath
    • Fluttering in your chest or irregular heartbeat
    • Swollen ankles or feet
    • Dizziness or fainting
    • Chest pain or tightness that occurs during exercise or activity
    • Chest pain that comes on suddenly at rest or with no identifiable cause
    • Nausea unrelated to food consumption or illness
    • Pain in the neck, jaw, upper abdomen or back

Other signs that you may not think are connected to possible heart disease include:

    • Sudden weight gain due to fluid retention from impaired heart function
    • Bleeding gums that are known to cause cardiac inflammation
    • Sexual dysfunction due to reduced blood flow and damaged blood vessels


If you experience any of these emergency symptoms, call 911 immediately – don’t try to diagnose yourself or wait to get to a hospital. Better to err on the side of caution than ignore a life-threatening event!

    • Severe chest pain and/or pressure that comes on suddenly or worsens over a short period of time
    • Pain that radiates down one of your arms
    • Sudden sweating or cool, clammy skin
    • Fainting or severe, sudden dizziness
    • Unexplained weakness
    • Rapid pulse

You don’t need to exhibit all of these signs to be having a heart attack and it’s better to get checked out by medical professionals who are only here to help and not to judge you even if it isn’t a true attack. So if you are reluctant to seek help because you think it’s embarrassing, PLEASE don’t let that get in the way of having a healthy, happy future. Your family and friends will thank you!