Do You Know The Signs Of A Heart Attack? - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

2/22/08- East Texas

Do You Know The Signs Of A Heart Attack?

Every year thousands of East Texans are rushed to the ER, after suffering a heart attack.

"Given the frequency at which we've seen heart disease and heart attacks in both our community and throughout the country, the fact that so many people are unaware or unwilling to understand what the warning signs are is a little disheartening," said East Texas Medical Center Cardiologist Scott Lieberman.  

According to the CDC, more than 900,000 Americans have a heart attack each year and around 150,000 of those are fatal. Heart disease is our country's number one killer. So why are so few of us aware of the warning signs?

"Obviously there's a level of denial," said Lieberman.  "Most people don't want to think they're sick."

That, plus education, Lieberman said is key.

"First who are the people who are at risk for heart disease? Smokers, diabetics, more typically men, people with strong family histories, elevated cholesterols, hyper-tensions, these are the important risk factors."

It's also important to remember the five warning signs. Pain in your jaw, neck, or back, feeling weak, lightheaded, or faint, having chest pain or discomfort, pain in your arms or shoulders, and shortness of breath. If you should ever suffer one of these symptoms, call 9-1-1 first thing.

If you would like to take a quiz to see what your risk is for heart attack, we have a link set up. Just click on "know more on 7" then look for "signs of a heart attack."

Courtney Lane, Reporting.  clane@kltv.com  

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