Know the Symptoms: Heart Attack and Stroke Warning Signs
Emergency Information Card
Post an Emergency Information Card by your phone if you have land line, or in a visible location in your home. The card will help someone calling 9-1-1 with your address and other critical information. Print your own with this pdf
Carry an emergency information card in your purse or wallet. This will provide vital information for people trying to help or care for you.
- Chest Discomfort
Most heart attacks involve discomfort in the center of the chest that lasts more than a few minutes, or that goes away and comes back. It can feel like uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain.
- Discomfort in Other Areas of the Upper Body
Symptoms can include pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach.
- Shortness of Breath
This feeling may occur with or without chest discomfort.
- Other Signs of Discomfort
These may include breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness.
Women's Heart Attack Symptoms
As with men, women's most common heart attack symptom is chest pain or discomfort. But women are somewhat more likely than men to experience some of the other common symptoms, particularly:
- Pain between or behind shoulder blades
- Chest pain
- Shortness of breath
- Back or jaw pain
If you or someone you are with has chest discomfort, especially with one or more of the other signs, don't wait longer than five minutes before calling 9-1-1 for help.
Stroke Warning Signs
Stroke is a medical emergency. Learn to recognize a stroke, because time lost is brain lost. Warning signs include:
- Sudden numbness or weakness of the 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 these warning signs occur in every stroke. If you or someone with you has one or more stroke symptoms that last more than a few minutes, don't delay! Immediately call 9-1-1 or the EMS number so an ambulance - ideally with advanced life support - can quickly be sent to you.