Know the More Subtle Signs of a Heart Attack

Heart attacks are not always marked by the intense, chest-clutching pain and collapse you typically see on television. In fact, many heart attacks start with only mild discomfort.

According to Regional Heart Center Cardiologist, King White, M.D., important signs of a heart attack include:

  • Chest discomfort-an uncomfortable feeling of pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain in the center of the chest that lasts for more than a few minutes, or that goes away and returns. This is common in most heart attacks.
  • Upper body discomfort-this can include one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach.
  • Shortness of breath-this often comes with chest discomfort but could occur first.
  • Other symptoms-breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea, weakness or light-headedness are possible.

"If you or someone else is showing signs of a heart attack, get medical help fast," urges Dr. White.  "Even if you're not sure it's a heart attack, check it out. Early treatment is the best defense against heart damage."

For more information about heart attacks call CHRISTUS St. Patrick Hospital at (337) 491-7577 or log on to

J. King White, M.D., is a local physician specializing in Cardiology.  He is an active member of the CHRISTUS St. Patrick Hospital Medical Staff.