Heart Disease 101: Warning Signs for Men

February 9, 2017

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), heart disease is the leading cause of death for men in the U.S. One in four men will die from heart disease. We want to change that statistic, and one way we can start to do so is by educating the community on the warning signs of heart disease so we can catch it early.

So what are the primary signs and symptoms of heart disease in men? When should you call the doctor? When should you call 9-1-1?

While women sometimes experience non-traditional and more subtle symptoms like sweating, pressure, nausea or vomiting, and back, neck or jaw pain, men may experience more traditional symptoms like chest pain and breaking out in a cold sweat. The primary signs and symptoms of heart disease are:

  • 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 with or without chest discomfort.
  • Other signs may include breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness.

If you, or someone you know exhibits signs of heart disease, it is important to act quickly. Call 9-1-1 or your emergency response number as soon as you suspect trouble. Remember, every minute matters when it comes to heart disease.  

If you want to learn more, talk to your primary care physician about your risk factors and any preventive care options that are right for you. And remember, you don’t have to be experiencing any warning signs to do so. The CDC reports that about half of the men who die suddenly of coronary heart disease have no previous symptoms.