Women too often hesitate to call 911 during a heart attack. This could be for any number of reasons, such as not believing they are really having a heart attack or just not wanting to raise a false alarm. Women must remember to never take a wait and see approach to a heart attack. The longer you wait the more damage a heart attack can cause. Take your symptoms seriously, because they are.
A recent CNN report states that women make other, often critical, mistakes that delay their treatment in these situations. Some women will downplay these symptoms, while others will self-diagnose themselves as having heartburn or other minor health issues.
These delays and mis-judgements can cost you your life. Don’t wait around for symptoms to worsen. Just call 911.
When emergency personnel arrive, clearly and completely describe your symptoms. For example, if your chest pain feels like someone just parked a car on your chest—tell them that exactly. If you have a unusual nausea or shortness of breath, tell them how unusual it is. If you have a family history of heart disease or if you have a history of heart attacks in your family, tell your paramedics about this as well.
All of this information is vital. By giving the paramedics a complete history of your symptoms, they can prepare emergency physicians and other medical personnel to provide you with the best treatment possible. This can save your heart and your life.
To Your Continued Health and Success!
Julia Gray, Licensed Practical Nurse