Angina is a type of chest pain, discomfort, or tightness, due to a lack of blood flow to the heart. People that have experienced angina have described it as a feeling of a heavyweight that has been placed on their chest. While angina is relatively common, it can be difficult for doctors to distinguish it from other types of chest pain. If you are experiencing unexplained chest pain, you should seek medical attention.
Symptoms of Angina
Symptoms of Angina include:
- Pressure, squeezing, and burning in the chest
Your symptoms have to be evaluated by a medical physician who will be able to determine whether you have stable angina or unstable angina, which is indicative of a heart attack.
Stable Angina vs. Unstable Angina
Stable angina is manageable with rest or angina medication. It usually develops when your heart is working hard, such as when you’re exercising. You can expect it, and the pain is similar to previous chest pains that you have experienced lasting for a short period of time.
Unstable angina, on the other hand, is classified as a medical emergency. It can occur when you are resting and is unexpected. It is more severe and lasts for up to 30 minutes or longer.
Another type of angina is variant angina (Prinzmetal’s angina), which usually occurs when you are resting, but can be relieved by angina medication.
These factors put you at risk of angina:
- Tobacco use: Chewing tobacco and smoking can damage the arteries to your heart.
- High Blood Pressure: Over a period of time, high blood pressure damages your arteries.