What Is A Silent Heart Attack And How To Tell If A Person Had It

Date January 24, 2018

What is a silent heart attack?

What does it feel like when you experience a heart attack? You may think about severe chest pain and even hitting a ground. Well, it seems to be an exaggerated version of a real heart attack.

A heart attack may show no signs and symptoms, but it still can significantly increase the risk of developing heart failure. Moreover, silent heart attacks represent nearly 45% of all heart attacks according to the Journal of the American Heart Association, and they often go undetected. That’s why it is very important to know more about this condition and its risk factors.

Most of silent heart attacks are diagnosed by routine electrocardiograms. People who had them usually don’t know about it. Some patients recalled that their sensations were mistaken for muscle pain, nausea, or a strong case of the flu.

Risk factors for silent heart attack

There are several factors that increase your risk of developing heart attacks. They include the following:

  • smoking tobacco;
  • family history of heart conditions;
  • age;
  • diabetes;
  • high cholesterol levels;
  • high blood pressure;
  • obesity;
  • sedentary lifestyle.

Having a silent heart attack seriously raises the risk of having another heart attack that could be life-threatening. Different forms of heart attacks may also increase your risk of severe complications, including heart failure.

When to visit your doctor

If you have factors that put you at risk of heart attack, consult with your doctor to evaluate your chances of developing this condition. Your doctor may prescribe specific treatment to reduce your likelihood of getting silent heart attacks.

If you think that you have had a silent heart attack, seek emergency care. There is the only proven way to confirm this condition, and a professional can do it. The imaging tests, such as an echocardiogram and electrocardiogram, can show certain changes that mean you have had a heart attack. Your doctor also will be able to analyze your health story and symptoms to choose the most effective treatment.

Better be safe than sorry.

Source: HealthLine, Mayo Clinic, Harvard Health

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This article is purely for informational purposes. Do not self-medicate, and in all cases consult a certified healthcare professional before using any information presented in the article. The editorial board does not guarantee any results and does not bear any responsibility for harm that may result from using the information stated in the article.