Angina is a pain or discomfort felt in your chest, which is usually caused by coronary heart disease.Some people feel the pain in their arm, neck, stomach or jaw.
Angina is usually caused by coronary heart disease. When the arteries that supply your heart muscle with blood and oxygen become narrowed, the blood supply to your heart muscle is restricted. This can cause the symptoms of angina.
Angina symptoms are often brought on by physical activity, an emotional upset, cold weather or after a meal. The episodes usually subside after a few minutes.
There are two other causes of angina. Variant angina (also known as Coronary artery spasm or Prinzmetal’s angina) happens when a coronary artery supplying blood and oxygen to your heart goes into spasm.
Cardiac syndrome X (also known as microvascular angina) usually occurs when you’re exerting yourself, for example when you’re physically active, or have had an emotional upset. With cardiac syndrome X, your coronary arteries will appear normal when they’re investigated, and there will be no evidence of the atheroma (fatty build-up in your arteries) that usually causes angina.
Angina often feels like a heaviness or tightness in your chest, and this may spread to your arms, neck, jaw, back or stomach as well. Some people describe a feeling of severe tightness, while others say it’s more of a dull ache. Some people experience shortness of breath too.
If you think your angina has got worse, feels different than it has before, has become more frequent, or has changed in any other way, you should consult a doctor immediately.
If you have not been diagnosed with angina and experience chest pain, call for an ambulance immediately.
If you have already been diagnosed with angina, you may experience angina pain or discomfort that you can manage by taking your glyceryl trinitrate (GTN) spray or tablets, and resting.
However, it could be a heart attack so if you feel:
You can take these steps: