Angina is a condition that is characterized by chest pain and general discomfort as a result of your heart not getting enough oxygen in your blood. Those who suffer from angina will experience a feeling of pressure and weight being put on their chest, and the pain can go beyond the chest and shoulders into the neck, back, arms and jaw.
Many people wrongly assume that angina is a disease, when it is in fact a symptom of an underlying problem. For instance, those with angina will usually have coronary heart disease, though there are other conditions that cause the symptom.
You are at risk of experiencing angina if you have high blood pressure, diabetes or metabolic syndrome, if you smoke and if you have unhealthily high levels of cholesterol. Men over the age of 45 and women over the age of 55 are also more likely to begin experiencing these symptoms.
Angina will typically be diagnosed by your healthcare provider, whether it’s a doctor or nurse, if they see that you are experiencing regular chest pain. The professional will then determine whether the angina is unstable or stable. If it is unstable, then you may be offered treatment to make sure you don’t have a heart attack.
So, what should you be looking for when it comes to angina? Take a look at these 10 of the most common symptoms, and if you’re experiencing any of them, be sure to speak to your doctor!
1. Aching and discomfort
The classic symptom of angina is an aching and uncomfortable feeling in the chest, focused of course around the heart. This pain occurs as a result of the heart struggling to do what it’s meant to do, with less oxygen being provided to the essential muscle through your blood.
This aching feeling should be quite painful, but not enough to cause you to keel over or collapse. Most people with this symptom might simply need to sit down for a little while, so as to allow the feeling to subside.
Many people also describe the experience as a pinching feeling, as if somebody is tugging on tendons inside of the chest.