A heart attack is a serious medical emergency and symptoms usually come on quickly.
The main signs are usually chest pain and lightheadedness or dizziness, says Britain’s National Health Service.
However, research has shown that there are seven symptoms that can occur a month before a fatal attack. The sun reports.
Writing in the diary TrafficMedical professionals found that less than a third of women report breast discomfort before the attack.
Experts from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences found that 95 percent of the participants had unusual symptoms more than a month before their heart attack and that these disappeared after the event.
The seven most common were:
1. Trouble sleeping (48 percent)
2. Shortness of breath (42 percent)
3. Indigestion (39 percent)
4. Anxiety (35.5 percent)
5. Heavy/weak arms or legs (24.9 percent)
6. Rethinking (23.9 percent)
7. Loss of appetite (21.9 percent)
Speak with The sunone expert said there are a whole host of other symptoms people could be suffering from.
dr Anushka Patchava, deputy chief medical officer at UK-based insurance company Vitality, explained that common symptoms include chest pain, chest tightness and chest heaviness – which could indicate your heart muscle is not getting enough oxygenated blood.
There can also be pain or weakness in our legs and arms – again due to decreased blood flow, the expert said.
She added: “Other symptoms of cardiovascular disease can include shortness of breath and palpitations (when someone can feel their heartbeat).
“This can lead to anxiety, sweating, and dizziness and fainting, as well as fatigue. All signs that the body is not getting enough oxygen.
“With moderate and severe vascular disease, it is also possible for a person to get swollen limbs. Extremities like toes or fingers can turn blue, which could be a possible sign that you’re at risk of a heart attack.
“While chest pain is the most common symptom, other symptoms may also occur, such as shortness of breath, nausea or vomiting, and back or jaw pain.”
When it comes to cardiovascular disease, Dr. Patchava that they can be divided into two parts.
The first, she said, is “cardio,” which refers to medical conditions that affect the heart.
The second, she added, is vascular, which refers to conditions affecting the blood vessels such as arteries or veins.
“Narrowing or blockage of blood vessels, for example due to plaque build-up, a condition called atherosclerosis, can contribute to high blood pressure (hypertension).
“Clogged blood vessels can then lead to a heart attack or stroke if the heart or brain is starved of oxygen, with coronary artery disease being the leading cause of heart attacks,” the expert added.
What are the most important factors?
Cardiovascular disease accounts for a quarter of all deaths in the UK, according to data from the British Heart Foundation (BHF).
That equates to more than 160,000 deaths a year, with nearly eight million Brits also living with the disease.
Regarding the causes of cardiovascular disease (CVD), Dr. Patchava, one of the biggest risks is smoking.
“Others are obesity and drinking too much alcohol. In addition, metabolic factors such as high cholesterol or diabetes can also come into play.
“High stress can lead to high blood pressure, which is a cause of cardiovascular disease and a contributing factor to heart attacks.
“There are many things we can do to manage stress, including physical activity or nurturing mental well-being using techniques like mindfulness and meditation.”
She added that it’s also important to remember the links between mental health problems like depression, which can contribute to an increased risk of heart disease.
“If you have a close relative with heart disease, chances are you have it.
“Same research also shows that people of Black or South Asian descent are at higher risk of heart disease,” she added.
This article originally appeared on The Sun and has been republished with permission
Originally posted as 7 Symptoms Of A Heart Attack That Can Strike Exactly A Month Before