Symptoms of a Heart Attack in Women and Men

Heart attack symptoms can differ for men and women, but the most common symptom for both is chest pain. Women might also have non-chest pain symptoms and less obvious warning signs.

How do I know if I’m having a heart attack?

Symptoms in Women

  • Chest pain, but not always
  • Pain or pressure in the lower chest or upper abdomen
  • Jaw, neck or upper back pain
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Shortness of breath
  • Fainting
  • Indigestion
  • Extreme fatigue

Symptoms in Men

  • Squeezing chest pressure or pain
  • Jaw, neck or back pain
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Shortness of breath

What do I do if I’m having a heart attack?

If you experience any of these signs or symptoms:

  • Dial 911 immediately, follow the operator’s instructions and get to a hospital right away.
  • Don’t drive yourself to the hospital.
  • Try to stay as calm as possible and take deep, slow breaths while you wait for the emergency responders.

Women who think they’re healthy often misread the symptoms of a heart attack because they don’t think it could happen to them. That’s why it’s crucial to learn about heart attack, know your numbers and live heart-healthy.