A heart attack or a myocardial infarction is when blood vessels that supply blood to the heart are blocked, preventing enough oxygen from reaching the heart. The heart muscle dies or becomes permanently damaged.

Symptoms of a heart attack start occurring slowly, with mild pain or discomfort generally in the chest. The pain may sometimes move from your chest to your arms, shoulder, neck, teeth, jaw, belly area, or back. Some of the other common signs are shortness of breath with or without chest discomfort, cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness, nervousness, anxiety, sweaty skin, paleness or pallor, rise in heart rate. Many of the symptoms of heart attack can be brought on by digestive disturbances or other less serious conditions.

There are usually three characteristics that distinguish chest pain (angina) from heart attack. Angina usually occurs as a result of emotional stress or exercise and goes away after resting for several minutes. Heart attack victims continue to experience pain even after rest which may last anywhere from 30 minutes to several hours. Medication like aspirin will sometimes relieve the pain of angina.

Early detection can prove life saving. Once detected, rush to your doctor and get yourself examined thoroughly. 

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