• By Deborah Balzer

Go Red: Understanding Heart Disease in Women

February 5, 2016

woman making a heart shape with her handsHeart disease is the number one killer of women. While both men and women are affected by heart disease, the warning signs and symptoms can be quite different. The American Heart Association has designated Feb. 5, 2016 as National Wear Red Day® to bring attention to this deadly disease and increase women’s awareness about their risk for heart disease and stroke. Dr. Amy Pollak , a  cardiologist at Mayo Clinic on the Florida campus, says 1 in 3 women die each year of heart disease and stroke, and 80 percent of cardiac events can be prevented. She says living a heart-healthy lifestyle and making simple changes can be the cure.

Why Dr. Amy Pollak Wears Red

Heart attack symptoms for women

The most common heart attack symptom in women is some type of pain, pressure or discomfort in the chest. But it's not always severe or even the most prominent symptom, particularly in women. And, sometimes, women may have a heart attack without chest pains. Women are more likely than men to have heart attack symptoms unrelated to chest pain, such as:

  • Neck, jaw, shoulder, upper back or abdominal discomfort
  • Shortness of breath
  • Right arm pain
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Sweating
  • Lightheadedness or dizziness
  • Unusual fatigue

If you have questions, see your health care provider for more information.

Journalists: Broadcast quality video is available in the downloads. [TRT :53]

 

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