Stork says that when it comes to fatigue, a heart attack tends to be something different than you’ve experienced before. The words “It just doesn’t feel right” are a warning sign as a physician. That doesn’t mean someone is having a heart attack, but the heart attack symptoms we talk about are when women, in particular, listen to their bodies and typically will say, “I haven’t felt this way before.” It’s more than I’m tired, it’s just a generalized weakness associated often with other subtle symptoms like shortness of breath. “In many cases, when I ask patients further, they will say, ‘Well, I have had a little tinge in my chest but I didn’t think that much of it.’ When you put it all together, you need to be concerned,” Stork says. Feeling stressed out, having a headache and being tired might be things that a person experiences on a daily basis, he explains. “But if you’re feeling fatigue and maybe a little more short of breath than normal, and if something just doesn’t feel right, don’t ignore those symptoms.”
5. Generalized weakness
Stork says that as a caregiver, when you notice that the person you’re caring for has dropped from their baseline, that’s the red flag. They may try to minimize it, if they’re stoic, but if you notice a big change, that’s when it’s worth giving the doctor a call.
Overall, Stork says that as a caregiver, it’s not your job to diagnose a heart attack. “I don’t think the concern should be so much, ‘Is this as heart attack?’ as much as the concern should be, is something potentially wrong here to the point where we need to seek further medical attention?”
Silent Killers: 5 Overlooked Heart Attack Symptoms originally appeared on AgingCare.com.