Heart Attack Symptoms that All Women Should Recognize

Myocardial infarction, more commonly called a heart attack, occurs when the flow of blood to the heart is disrupted. In most cases, blood flow becomes obstructed due to a build-up of fatty deposits in the coronary arteries. Eventually, a deposit or plaque can rupture and form a blood clot. If the blood clot is large enough, it can block circulation through the artery and cause a heart attack. Because a heart attack can quickly cause irreversible damage to the heart muscle, it’s crucial to recognize the signs that emergency care is needed. For emergency care in the Las Vegas area, Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center is available around the clock.


Crushing chest pain is perhaps the most easily recognizable heart attack symptom. However, women often experience discomfort associated with a cardiac event differently than men. When women suffer from chest pain, they’re more likely to experience it as pressure, squeezing, or even a sensation of fullness. Women may experience discomfort elsewhere in the upper body, including the back, neck, jaw, shoulders, arms, and abdomen.


Not all of the symptoms of a heart attack necessarily have to occur simultaneously and abruptly. Fatigue is one possible sign of a heart attack that women may experience days or weeks ahead of the event itself. Women may feel unusually exhausted and short of breath when doing simple, everyday tasks.

Flu-Like Symptoms

Flu-like symptoms can include dizziness and lightheadedness. Nausea, indigestion, cold sweats, and clammy skin can also occur. Women are advised to take these symptoms seriously, especially if they occur along with other possible signs of a cardiac event.

Psychological Distress

It’s often difficult to determine the difference between a panic attack and a heart attack based on symptoms alone. Both can cause feelings of impending doom or extreme anxiety, especially in women. Diagnostic tests at the emergency care department can quickly reveal whether a woman has suffered a heart attack.

The Heart Center at Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center treats more cardiology patients than any other heart hospital in the greater Las Vegas area. Our emergency care, heart health, and stroke care providers are dedicated to upholding the highest standards of healthcare excellence. If you would like to learn more about the services available at our heart hospital, you can call (702) 233-5300 and speak with a registered nurse.