Cardiologist Questions Chest Pain

What should be my first few steps when experiencing chest pain?

Not all chest pains are heart attacks is what i have been told. So, what should be the first few steps if I or my loved one experiences a chest pain? Are there ways to determine if it is a sign of heart attack or something else? What should i do to ease the pain or prevent worsening of the condition?

5 Answers

Risk factors are very important to consider. Not everyone gets the typical "elephant sitting on my chest with radiation to the left arm", women can have jaw pain or nausea and vomiting or back pain. It is very important to be active and eat healthy. Exertional chest tightness needs to be evaluated by a cardiologist. If you have severe tightness in the chest that lasts more than 15 minutes and you feel something is really wrong, someone has to take you to ER for evaluation. The problem is not everyone has the same symptoms, but most of the time people with a major heart attack know something's not right and just don't dismiss it and go to ER if it is that bad. The only thing you can do for prevention is a healthy lifestyle, compliance to medication and regular exercise and a healthy diet.
This is a broad question. There are many causes of chest pain. Most of them are not serious. But some can be very serious. There is no quick way to know whether chest pains are serious or not. But because they could be serious you should not take any chances. You should discuss your symptoms with your doctor or go to the Emergency Room.
Best answer is to go to ER. Of course it depends on age, risk factors, etc.
Hard question it all depends on risk factors, always a good idea if there are risk factors to seek medical attention, as a rule I would take 81 mg of aspirin daily than to be safe see a DR
This is a loaded question. Safest response is to call 911, because one can never be sure. Presentation can be different in males and females. Difficulty breathing, jaw or arm discomfort, a feeling of gas, will pass out, sweating, severe pressure or a vice-like feeling, palpitations, faster or much slower heart rate. If aspirin is handy, one should take one immediately and call 911.

Sorry, hope I did not scare you. Better safe than sorry.