Heart Disease Risk Factors

Coronary heart disease is America’s No. 1 killer. Stroke is No. 3, and the leading cause of serious, long-term disability. But there are things you can do to improve your health and your chances. And, in both cases, early detection and treatment can make a big difference!

Heart Attack
The American Heart Association says the body likely will send one or more of these warning signals of a heart attack:

  • Uncomfortable pressure, fullness, squeezing or pain in the center of the chest lasting more than a few minutes.
  • Pain spreading to the shoulders, neck or arms.
  • Chest discomfort with lightheadedness, fainting, sweating, nausea or shortness of breath.

The American Heart Association says the warning signs of stroke or “brain attack” are

  • Sudden numbness or weakness of face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body.
  • Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding.
  • Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes.
  • Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination.
  • Sudden, severe headache with no known cause.

Not all of these signs occur in every attack. Sometimes they go away and return. If you notice one or more of these signs in another person, don’t wait. Call your emergency medical services and get the person to a hospital right away! Treatment can be more effective if given quickly. Every minute counts!