Heartburn Or Heart attack? How To Differentiate Them!


heartburnIt can be difficult for an ordinary person to differentiate between the heartburn and heart attack.

Mistaking a heart attack for heartburn can be very dangerous, and therefore, it is important that you try and understand how they typically differ so that you may know when to get immediate help.

Most people have the tendency of thinking that when they have taken a big meal and feel a burning sensation that it is always heartburn. Chest pain can, however, be a result of reduced blood flow to your heart or real heart attack. The symptoms of heart attack and heartburn can really overlap.

Angina ( reduced blood flow, heartburn and heart attack are quite much alike, which make even experience medical practitioners not to always be able to differentiate them from your medical history or through a physical examination. This explains why patients who are taken to the emergency room because of chest pain are immediately run through tests to rule out a heart attack.

If you have chest pain and your are not sure what is causing it, call your doctor to run some tests on you. But, if your chest pain is persistent and you are not sure it is heartburn, call emergency line 911. If you had an episode of unexplained chest pain that disappeared within a few hours and never sought medical attentions, it is vital to let your doctor know.

Heart BurnNote that both a developing heart attack and heartburn can cause symptoms that subside after sometimes. What that means is that the chest pain doesn’t have to last a long time to be a warning sign.

However, there are signs that are very specific to heart attack and that set it apart from the heartburn. For instance, heart attack pain may spread to the jaw, the arm or the throat; this is not likely to happen with heartburn.

Also, while heart attack pain may subside if you sit down and rest, pain that is a result of indigestion persists even when you are resting. Heart attack Pain normally lasts for some minutes for ebbing; it is normally sustained. Heartburn pain, on the other hand, is very brief, and it normally lasts for a few seconds or even goes for hours before diminishing.

To be able to differentiate heart attack from the hurt burn, we are going to look into the signs that specific to severe heart attack. You may have been led to think that a heart attack just comes from nowhere, but that is not the case! There are quite a number of symptoms that one would notice before it strikes.

medical specialistStudies carried out by Harvard; show that only twenty-five percent of heart attack victims have no prior signs of it. However, it is wise to note that the signs you are aware of are far much different from those that actually occur during such attacks.

Once you spot these symptoms, it is advisable to contact a medical specialist for assistance. Here are some of the signs to watch out for that could be vital in saving your life as well as that of someone else’s.

• A Rapid, Beating, Or Irregular Heartbeat

When you experience unexpected and mysterious incidents of fast, abnormal heartbeat as well as rhythm, you can be sure that a heart attack may be just around the corner. On the other hand, if you experience skipped beats or rhythms, you need not worry much as they are less serious though seeking medical attention is still vital.

However, when you experience an abnormal heartbeat that is accompanied by a rise in the number of heart beats each minute, then seeking urgent medical care isn’t a choice anymore. This case is referred to as ventricular tachycardia and supraventricular. People who engage in exercise are more victims to the above condition that often leads to sudden death.

Thus, one should seek professional medical assistance on noticing anything out of the norm. If you are not keen, you are likely to confuse these symptoms with that of one suffering from a panic attack. You will notice the fast thrash of your heart similar to one where you may have been running for quite some distance. And the episodes are likely to come on suddenly.

heart burnNormally, there is no actual cause for such a sudden heartbeat increase and arrhythmia though there is one type of ventricular tachycardia that is as a result of the active exercise by someone suffering from heart disease.

If you happen to experience this, then do not refrain from calling a professional to offer aid where necessary.

• Nauseating, Stomachache, And Indigestion

You may be a victim of nausea, stomach ache, or even indigestion without knowing the possible causes and as usual, you end up thinking that you are suffering from any gastrointestinal problems. Angina which feels like cramping, squeezing or pain is a condition where blood flowing to the heart is either completely cut off or reduced, which results from fatty deposits blocking blood flow through the arteries to the heart.

At the same time, both lack of oxygen and poor circulation of oxygen in the blood may be the causes of indigestion, nausea as well as vomiting. This is more experienced by women who are at their 60’s.This condition is in most cases found in women who will do their best to avoid the emergency room. And the reason behind why we lose around forty-two percent of women every year as compared to the twenty-four percent of men.

medicationsHere you will notice that the pain gets worse when exposed to exertion and improves with rest.

You will find that relying on antinausea medication, antacid or any other indigestion remedies won’t do you any good.

Once you notice that your symptoms are persisting, do seek medical assistance from the doctor. You should also request to be tested for both coronary artery disease and angina. In the case where your advised that the indigestion symptoms are far from relation to the physical exertion, then be on the look out! Getting a checkup once in a while will not do you any harm.

• Severe Fatigue

It is advisable to note that when you experience fatigue that goes up for days, weeks, or even months. As a result to be quite cautious as this could be the onset of a heart attack. Note not to confuse this with the kind of fatigue you may experience from a run on the treadmill.

According to studies from the National Institute of Health, statistics shows that seventy percent of women are said to have experienced tremendous fatigue in the weeks or months prior to having a heart attack. Symptoms or signs to look out for include abrupt fatigue especially on exertion.

womanThis may progress continuously during the day, where most women will feel completely exhausted by afternoon. Another sign is a heavy feeling that is experienced in the legs.

Women should, therefore, be keen to watch out for the above symptoms. If you suffer from any of the above signs, it is advisable to inform your doctor.

• Anxiety Attacks And Restlessness

A decrease in oxygen levels is a result of heart disease leading to insomnia, anxiety, as well as the agitation that can’t be explained by normal circumstances. Normally, people who suffer from heart attack normally start to experience sleep problems and anxiety before the attack.

And that is a bodily sign that something is not just right. It is important to watch out for changes in your sleeping patterns. If you notice something different that you did not have before, it is important that you seek medical attention.

Sleep problem can take the form of unexplained waking in the middle of the night or trouble falling asleep. So, if you are lately having anxiety, you should ask yourself if it is related to recent triggers or events. If your anxiety seem abnormal to life events or rather cannot be explained, or you have unexplained insomnia, you should discuss everything with your doctor.

• Pain In The Neck, Shoulder, Jaw, Or Arm

heartburnEven though chest pain is a common sign of heartburn, it is a well-known indicator of heart attack, especially if the pain mimics typical neck, shoulder, or jaw pain.

What normally happens is that the heart tissue that is damaged sends pain signals to the spinal cord from where it gets to nerves that radiate out from the cervical vertebrae.

This pain can travel to the neck and then to the jaw. The pain can also radiate down the shoulder to the arm and hand. The pain can feel sharp, or dull as you would feel with a pulled muscle.

• Inability To Breath Properly, Feeling Dizzy, Or Unable To Draw A Deep Breath

Contrary to what many think, inability to draw enough breath is not, most of the time due to problems with your lungs. It could be that there is too little oxygen in the circulating blood that is caused by a weakened heart.

heartburnShortness of breath (dyspnea) is often the first sign of severe heart attack. Symptoms to note here include feeling like you have been deprived of oxygen which one is likely to experience during areas of high altitude. Also you may feel a bit light-headed and faintly.

You may even suspect that you are suffering from lung disease or asthma but all these could actually mean you need to be on the lookout instead for any heart failure. If you experience any of the above symptoms, it would be wise for you to seek medical assistance from your doctor.

• Abnormal And Excessive Sweating

You should be keen to note any sweating that is out of the norm especially having not engaged in other activities that you are not used to. Such would be a red alarm for the occurrence of a heart attack. This is familiar to the sign experienced by most women in menopause who suffer from night sweats as well as hot flashes.

Studies from the University of Chicago reveal that the very first sign that a heart attack may be around the corner are excessive sweating in most areas of the body, which include the palms, soles of the feet, the chest and the back.

medical officerSymptoms to look out for include sweating profusely that goes on for a period of more than one week. Such signs may even appear and go over a long period of time.

If you note any of the above symptoms, it is advisable to seek advice from a professional medical officer. Knowing how to tell if you are suffering from heart burn or heart attack can save you from the possible death that comes with severe heart attack.


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