Women's symptoms may be different
More women than men die of heart disease every year. Women can develop heart disease at any age, but they're particularly at risk after menopause, when levels of estrogen–a hormone that's believed to offer some heart protection—falls off.
In women, CHD may have different symptoms than it does in men. In some cases, a woman may not recognize her symptoms and she may be misdiagnosed because she's less likely to have chest pain, the most common symptom in men. When women have CHD, their symptoms can include:
- A hot or burning sensation in the chest or upper abdomen
- Discomfort in the neck, upper back, or shoulder
- Shortness of breath
- Nausea or vomiting
- Unusual fatigue
If you're a woman, it's important to know the symptoms of heart disease that you may have, and seek help when it's necessary. Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in women. But as with men, getting promptly diagnosed and treated can make all the difference.
Not all people experiencing the symptoms mentioned on this page have CHD. However, if you have these symptoms, talk to your doctor for further evaluation.