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Signs and Symptoms

Typically, symptoms of angina are chest pain or pressure, which may extend to the neck, jaw or arm. However, some people experience angina as shortness of breath, upper belly pain, indigestion, lightheadedness, extreme weakness or tiredness, or general discomfort.

Women and diabetics frequently have symptoms that are different from chest pain or pressure symptoms.  

When Should I Call My Doctor or Go to the Emergency Room?

Know what your angina feels like and what is typical for you so you know when to call for help. Do not wait to call 911 if your angina is worse than normal, for example more severe, more frequent or lasting longer. If any of these occur, call your health care professional right away.

Call 911 immediately if your symptoms:

  • are very severe
  • occur while at rest (not exerting yourself) 
  • do not go away 10 minutes after taking nitroglycerin under your tongue

Getting help fast can save your life. Even if you are not sure your chest pain is a heart attack, have it checked out.

  • Last Edited 08/31/2017

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