Inspite of very fast paced societies and stressful lifestyles, everyone has to be aware of heart disease as it has become the world's number 1 killer. It is especially so in the United States as every year more than 6 million people die due to this disease. That is one-fourth of the total number deaths in the country. Coronary heart disease is responsible for more than half of the deaths caused by heart disease. This afflicts both men and women, and now it is even common to see young people seriously affected by life threatening heart conditions.

A comprehensive health study conducted in the United States showed that 715,000 people have their heart attacks each year for the first time. Among them, 190,000 have already suffered a heart attack priviously. Although heart disease is common to everyone, some ethnic suffices more than heart conditions than others. This is probably due to cultural, lifestyle, diet, and life pattern differences. African Americans are more susceptible. More than 25% of the African American deaths are due to heart disease. Followed by Hispanics and Whites.

Early Action Is Critical

Although heart disease can not be completely prevented, its severity can be minimized and the age at which it occurs can be postponed considerably. Heart attacks can cripple a person for life and can occur at any time. The heart will give warning signs and these signs must be taken very seriously.

A survey taken in the United States shows that more than 47% of those who suffered a heart attack died before they reached a hospital. This clearly shows that most people do not take the early warning signs of heart disease with the seriousness it describes. In this context, it is necessary to know the early warning signs of a heart attack and take action immediately as it is the deciding factor that is going to determine life and death.

The most recognized early warning signs are:

  • Severe and sudden chest pain
  • Severe and increasing discomfort in the chest area
  • Unexplained upper body pain with increasing intensity
  • A lifting feeling in the upper stomach area
  • Discomfort in back, neck, jaw and arms especially the left arm
  • Shortness of breath and difficulty in breathing
  • Nausea and feelings of vomiting
  • Light headedness with profuse cold sweating

When you have some of these symptoms, do not ignore them! Take immediate action and get the emergency room fast. Do not allow the “number 1 killer” to take your life.