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Heart Attack Symptoms

February 28, 2014, 6:21 PM by Casey Wonnenberg

Heart Attack Symptoms

Heart disease is the number one killer in America.

But many women in particular have a difficult time knowing the signs of a heart attack.

51-year-old Kimberlee Henle-Jewell has routine appointments with a cardiologist to check out her heart, but a couple years ago the Chester woman didn't think twice about her heart health.

"I just had a little ache here in my neck, like somebody threw a marble at me," Henle-Jewell said.

That pain continued for about half a week.

"I didn't think anything of it because I was busy," Henle-Jewell said.

When she called her doctor to set up an appointment for pain she was having in her knee, she told the nurse about her neck pain.

"She said, 'How do you get rid of it?' I said, 'I would just lay down, and it would go away.' She goes, 'I think you better get to the emergency room,'" Henle-Jewell said.

It turns out Henle-Jewell had suffered a heart attack and had four blocked arteries.

"This is one of her arteries," Sanford Cardiologist Dr. Richard Clark said.

Sanford Cardiologist Dr. Richard Clark says while you often hear of chest pain being the number one sign of a heart attack, women may have different symptoms, including shortness of breath, irregular back pain and even jaw pain. Other symptoms might be breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness.

"Everything certainly sounds good still," Clark said.

Henle-Jewell is now doing much better, but she has a message to other women.

"I thought it would be a big pain or something, but it wasn't. It was just a little ache right here. That's it. Pay attention to your body. You know whatever it is saying," Henle-Jewell said.

Dr. Clark says you can also take steps to try to prevent heart disease, including exercising, eating a sensible diet and not smoking or drinking.

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