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Heart Disease: Symptoms and Causes

Woman getting her heart listened to. Brookhaven Heart.

Photo by sitthiphong for Shutterstock

Heart disease is something that we all have heard of, and that is for good reason. Coronary heart disease is the leading cause of death for adults in the United States, and has the potential to affect many age groups, not just senior citizens. But, what you may not know is that coronary heart disease and coronary artery disease are actually the same thing; when plaque builds up in the artery walls and narrows the blood’s passageway to the heart, you are at a much higher risk for heart attacks and blood clots. Here are the symptoms and causes of heart disease, and why you need to start prioritizing your heart now to stay ahead of heart disease by scheduling a diagnostic angiogram.

Symptoms of Heart Disease

Heart disease can differ between men and women in terms of symptoms. But make no mistake, if you experience any symptoms, you should not hesitate to make an appointment with your doctor as soon as you can. According to the Mayo Clinic, symptoms in your chest can be anything from pains (which are more common in men), tightness, pressure, and angina (which is more prevalent in women). If you have abnormal shortness of breath, that could also be an indicator of a heart complication. Pay attention to your arms and legs for new or unusual sensations like numbness, weakness, pain, or coldness. Especially keep this in mind if you know for a fact that you have narrowed blood vessels. These symptoms likely sound indicative of a heart attack, and that is one of the main concerns when it comes to heart disease. Pain in your jaw, neck, throat, upper back, or abdomen make up other possible symptoms. Additionally, many women with heart disease are far more likely to experience significant fatigue and nausea than men.

Causes of Heart Disease

There are many potential causes and factors that can increase your risk of heart disease. The top cause of heart disease is usually obesity, which can normally be traced to a poor diet, little physical exercise, excessive drinking, and potentially a smoking habit. However, all of these things individually can put you just as much at risk regardless of your weight; they are all the perfect ways for plaque to begin to build up in your arteries and prevent your heart from getting the vital blood supply it needs. People who suffer from diabetes are unfortunately at a higher risk for developing heart disease, as are those who suffer from high blood pressure and high cholesterol. It is also very important to note that, if family members have a history of the disease, you should stay especially aware of these things. Men have to worry about their increased chance of developing this disease at age 45, and for women it is 55.

Make an Appointment at Brookhaven Heart Today

At Brookhaven Heart, we want our patients to be as informed as possible about diseases like coronary heart disease. Being the leading cause of deaths amongst adults in America is no small matter, and we believe being proactive now can save lives later. Make an appointment with one of our expert cardiologists today, and visit our website for diet and lifestyle changes that will benefit you immensely moving forward. Call us today at 631-654-3278. We have offices in Patchogue, New Hyde Park, and Hicksville.